Icemageddon in Alaska with 20 degrees

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Icemageddon in Alaska with 20 degrees

Between New Year's Eve and January 1, 2022, anomalous heat of exceptional proportions is expected in various parts of the globe. Alaska is in the throes of an abnormal heat wave, with temperatures in some places reaching 20 degrees at a time of year usually characterized by bitter cold.

On Kodiak Island southwest of Anchorage, 19.4 degrees was recorded last Sunday, the highest temperature ever recorded in Alaska in December. The new record follows a series of outliers recorded in previous days such as 18.3 degrees at Kodiak airport, 16.6 degrees in Cold Bay, and 13.3 degrees on Saturday 25 in Unalaska: it was the day of Warmest Christmas ever recorded in Western Aleutians.

Extreme weather conditions, the so-called Icemageddon »: after the heavy snowfalls, torrential rains arrived that left the region covered with slabs of ice as hard as concrete. Widespread power outages, road and office closures resulted.

The thick ice that formed on the roads made them dangerous for drivers, the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities warned. Ice is extremely difficult to remove once it has stuck to the pavement. Even though the air temperature was warm, as the roads were at sub-zero temperatures, the ice stuck to the surface.

The ice is expected to remain on the roads at least until March or April, Rick Thoman, of the Alaska Center for Climate Assessment and Policy, told the BBC.

Hawaii: seal killed by blunt object

Hawaiian monk seal was found dead on a beach in Hawaii, intentionally struck the animal in the head with a blunt instrument.

This is the third intentional killing of monk seals in 2021 in Hawaii for an endangered species. The species has only about 1,400 specimens and is in the Red List by the IUCN. Most seals live in uninhabited Hawaiian atolls, and only 300 live on Hawaii's eight main islands, including Molokai.

The seal was found last September by a doctor walking her dogs on the beach. The investigations then ascertained that the animal was hit in the head with an object that caused its death. The other two Hawainan monk seals also died unnaturally this year from blunt force trauma.

According to the NOAA, the leading cause of death in the monk seal population is toxoplasmosis, a disease caused by a parasite that is spread into the marine environment through cat feces that have ended up in fishermen's nets.