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La Niña climate phenomenon has been accused of increasing the risk of life-threatening diarrhea in children

La Niña climate phenomenon has been accused of increasing the risk of life-threatening diarrhea in children 88

The association of weather with infectious diseases can help in creating an early warning system for outbreaks.

Researchers at the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University conducted a study to find out what causes outbreaks of very dangerous diarrhea for young children. Article about it published In the magazine Nature communications.

In low- and middle-income countries, diarrhea is the second leading cause of death among children under five. Almost three quarters (72%) of deaths occur in babies from birth to two years. Mortality rates are particularly high in Africa.

The frequency of the disease can also be affected by weather changes. Previously, a correlation was recorded between fluctuations in climatic changes caused by the warm El Niño and surges in incidence in Peru, Bangladesh, China and Japan. The authors decided to check whether there is a connection between outbreaks of diarrhea in Africa and the El Niño antipode, the cold current of La Niña. Previously, work on climate and incidence in African countries recorded only association with cholera, which accounts for only a fraction of the dangerous intestinal diseases on the continent.

The so-called Southern Oscillation consists of the phenomena of El Nino and La Nino, causing opposite extreme indicators of water temperature and atmospheric pressure in the equatorial zone of the Pacific Ocean. The periods in which they dominate last for six months, and such changes occur every few years, from three to seven. Between them several years can pass without weather disasters. Both phenomena affect the climatic state of the entire planet, but the most severe consequences appear near the main “theater of action”.

La Niña climate phenomenon has been accused of increasing the risk of life-threatening diarrhea in children 89
La Niña (left) and El Nino sea water temperature / © Clim’Blog

The authors analyzed the relationship between the status of the Southern Oscillation, climatic conditions, and cases of diarrhea in children under the age of five in the Chobe region in northeastern Botswana. They found that La Niña is associated with lower temperatures, increased rainfall and increased floods during the rainy season. In turn, these weather conditions caused by La Niña, with a delay of up to seven months, give a connection with an approximately 30% increase in the incidence of diarrhea in children of this age. all this happens at the beginning of the rainy season – from December to February.

Scientists explain that these results show that forecasts for the phenomena of the Southern Oscillation can be used as a tool for predicting epidemics of intestinal diseases of various etiologies – at least in the countries of southern Africa. Infectious diarrhea is caused by many different pathogens – viruses, bacteria and protozoa, and weather conditions can critically affect their activity, especially those transmitted through water. For example, heavy rains pollute drinking water, bringing pathogens from pastures and from infected dwellings to water storages, and drought provokes the accumulation of animal carriers at water bodies, increasing the entry of microorganisms into surface water resources.

Given the changing climate of these places and the lack of water purification systems, scientists recommend conducting additional research and using their results to deal with possible epidemics. In addition, such relations with climate events are important not only for countries in Africa: for example, similar models are built even in the USA, though not for intestinal infections, but in the flu season. Models are also used to predict the spread in various places of deadly diseases such as the Ebola virus and West Nile virus.

Scientists hope that long-term results can help save many lives. They can form the basis of an early warning system. It will allow officials of local ministries of health to prepare for periods of increased incidence of diarrhea in advance: up to seven months can elapse from the moment the first data is received until the epidemic begins. “Increased stocks of medicines, the preparation of hospital beds and the organization of health workers can significantly improve the ability of medical facilities to cope with the high incidence of diarrhea,” they explain.


Planet Earth

Scientists – It is much colder today than in the last 8,000 years

Scientists - It is much colder today than in the last 8,000 years 90
Ted Scambos / NSIDC

Undisputed temperature reconstructions from around the world show that for much of the Holocene (last 10,000 years), the planet was much warmer than it is today.

Kenneth recently wrote how many new studies of glacier and sea ice sizes show that Iceland is 2-4 ° C colder today than it has been in the past 8,000 years. Only the late 19th century was a little colder.

This post was posted on WUWT and the author provided additional graphics there from other parts of the world showing that the early Holocene was warmer around the world.

First, South America, which shows 100 years ago that it was much warmer from the 1930s to the 1950s than it is today:

Scientists - It is much colder today than in the last 8,000 years 91

Next, we have a 7000-year reconstruction of the Canadian Arctic temperature:

Scientists - It is much colder today than in the last 8,000 years 92

Note that, as many of us already know, the Arctic was much warmer in the early Holocene than it is today.

Finally, let’s take a look at the Swiss Alps, which are 9,000 years old:

Scientists - It is much colder today than in the last 8,000 years 93

Here we see that today it is very cold in the Alps compared to the early Holocene. Old tree trunks found under the glaciers confirm this.

A WUWT reader added that he has “a lot more of this type of graphs, which show very clearly that the whole wolrld has been much warmer for much of the last 10,000 years than it is now.”

And there are really a lot of them!

Medieval warm period, confirmed by hundreds of works

Sebastian Lüning’s remarkable and outstanding Medieval Warm Period reference map, shows hundreds of climatic reconstructions from this period. There we find a lot of research that shows that there is nothing unusual about today’s climate compared to what it was 1000 years ago.

Here are 80 charts from 58 peer-reviewed articles showing the same.


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Planet Earth

Polar vortex: “wild” winter is coming in the US, Northern Europe and East Asia after the 16th of January

Polar vortex: "wild" winter is coming in the US, Northern Europe and East Asia after the 16th of January 94

In the upper atmosphere above the North Pole, experts saw a rapidly swirling vortex of cold air that could bring severe frosts to the United States, Northern Europe and East Asia. Serious cold snap and snowy weather are expected after January the 16th.

Snowfalls and a cold snap hit South Korea since the start of 2021, hitting historic snow maximums and temperatures. In the country, for the first time since 1964, television and newer communications are sending people cold snap warnings:

The situation is similar in Japan, where a new snow storm hit historic highs:

On January 7, the thermometer In Beijing dropped to -20 degrees Celsius, breaking the 1966 record. In other regions of China, the temperature is also not sugar, and you can only move around in special uniforms:

The cold even reached Taiwan, where the temperature in some areas dropped below freezing point, snow poured down and people realized that rice terraces can be used as a ski jump:

Even more snow went to Spain, where on January 6, 2021, a temperature of -34.1 ° C was recorded – the lowest on record. After that, a snow storm hit the country, which has not been seen for 80 years:

The same thing happens in Canada and in the northern states of the United States:

It seems that after a stratospheric warming, the subpolar vortex began to split:

The vortex itself is a standard phenomenon. However, this time experts were surprised at his movement. It is possible that in the near future it will be divided into two parts. 

Scientists associate the strange behavior with the changed climate in the Arctic, which has become warmer. From September to December, the amount of ice cover decreased significantly.

The polar vortex is a low-pressure region located in the stratosphere and filled with cold air. When the jet stream of air that holds the vortex weakens, the low pressure area moves south. 

As the ice shrinks, more moisture will move inland. It will turn to snow, so snowfalls are expected. Snow, in turn, reflects heat, leading to a cold snap.

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Planet Earth

Hospital in Naples was evacuated after a new, huge sinkhole appeared

Hospital in Naples was evacuated after a new, huge sinkhole appeared 95

Eyewitnesses said they heard a loud crash at dawn when a huge hole in the ground formed outside the Ponticelli Ospedale del Mare hospital in eastern Naples.

Early in the morning of January 8, 2021, a sinkhole occurred in the parking lot of a clinic in Naples. The depth of the formed cavity is about 20 meters, the total area of ​​the hole is about 2,000 square meters.

No casualties were found at the scene; firefighters say the sinkhole “affected an area of ​​about 500 square meters” and engulfed several cars parked near the hospital.

As the press writes and as a little can be seen from the videos, rescuers and firefighters were running around the pit together with the governor of the area.  But who should be there in the forefront are Italian geologists, since Naples stands in the very center of the volcanic system known as the Phlegrean Fields.

If the surface collapsed, moreover – the surface reinforced with concrete and reinforced from below with some kind of communications, then we are talking about serious soil deformations caused by the activity of magma.

Italy has been in doubt since the summer of 2020, because swarms were observed there in very atypical places in May, and according to the forecasts of old Italian seismologists, who had witnessed many strong earthquakes, it should have boomed in the August region.

Fortunately, nothing bad happened to Italy and there was no big earthquake. But, since there are swarms, it means that something is being prepared, the magma is gathering strength. 

Following this particular sinkhole event – an obvious sign that a major earthquake in Italy is already very close.

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