Now that ice is melting faster, with sometimes deadly consequences. In 2014, 16 sherpaswere killed in an avalanche on Mount Everest. Another 22 people were killed in avalanches after an earthquake struck the region in 2015.
We’re seeing deadly avalanches in other parts of the world as well. Already, the National Avalanche Center has counted 16 deaths due to avalanches in the United States this year. Four skiers were killed in an avalanche earlier this month in the French Alps. And a volcanic eruption triggered an avalanche that killed a skier in Japan in January.
The frequency of extreme climate and weather events is already increasing, and many experts say man-made climate change is an important motivating factor.
“Damages from extreme weather and climate events have been increasing, and 2017 was the costliest year on record,” said study lead author Noah Diffenbaugh of Stanford University. “These rising costs are one of many signs that we are not prepared for today’s climate, let alone for another degree of global warming.”
January 2018 was officially the hottest month ever recorded in New Zealand.
Niwa made the announcement on Friday afternoon, as communities on the West Coast were mopping up the mess created by a powerful storm that descended over eroding coasts; as some in Dunedin settled into their homes after a sweeping fire while others in low-lying parts of the city clear up after yet another flood; as it was snowing in Cromwell during the hottest summer in many years, after a month where the mean air temperature was 3C warmer than usual, based on the country’s century-old seven-station record.
Earlier in the week, the news was filled with fan shortages, wildfires and mountains shedding rock because of a lack of snow; at its end, it was 14C in parts of central Otago, multiple areas near Christchurch were on fire, and homes throughout the South Island had been damaged by the sea. An ominous super blood moon part way through the week, whilst unrelated, summed up the vibe: unsettled, bordering on Biblical.
Eight people including two firefighters have been killed in storm-related accidents as hurricane-strength winds tear across northern Europe.
Mother nature topped the most significant risks facing the world for a second year in a row, the survey showed. They include natural disasters and extreme weather events that human-caused climate change may be abetting.