Connect with us

Climate Change

Snow problem for Japan’s ice sculpture festival



Yearly, tens of 1000’s of vacationers flock to the snow competition within the northern Japanese metropolis of Sapporo, attracted by some 200 giant, however intricate ice sculptures.

However this 12 months, there’s an issue: no snow. 

With excessive temperatures that festival-goers put right down to local weather change, organizers have been compelled to truck in powder from distant cities for his or her signature sculptures in an unheard-of ice disaster.

“This lack of snow is unprecedented,” mentioned Yumato Sato, an official in command of organizing the snow competition, which usually makes use of 30,000 tonnes of the stuff for sculptures starting from anime characters to well-known racehorses.

“We had to usher in snow from locations we had by no means reached out to earlier than” similar to Niseko, a city about 60 kilometers away from Sapporo well-known for its snowboarding, he mentioned.

Including to the issue was the necessity for pristine snow, excellent for sculpting.

“The snow must be freed from dust, in any other case the sculptures can break up,” he mentioned.

“We barely managed to scrape collectively sufficient snow.”

Report low snowfall in Japan this 12 months has additionally compelled many ski resorts to close their pistes. In accordance with Weathernews, one quarter of the 400 resorts surveyed had been unable to function.

There was a knock-on impact on one of many snow competition’s most important points of interest — a 100-meter-long, 10-meter-high slide — that needed to be gotten smaller.

Learn additionally: Indonesian snow sculpting groups conquer competition in Harbin regardless of temperature shock

‘As soon as earlier than I die’ 

Snowfall in Sapporo has been lower than half the annual common, in line with the Japan Meterological Company’s native observatory. Excessive temperatures melted the snow in mid-December and the mercury is predicted to remain above common.

This posed a significant problem for the 125 native Self-Protection Forces troops who painstakingly assemble the sculptures annually that may be as excessive as 15 meters, in line with commanding officer Colonel Minoru Suzuki.

“Because of report heat climate this 12 months, we did not have a lot snow and the snow contained extra water which made the statues soften simply,” Suzuki instructed AFP.

His troops spent about 100 days planning and constructing a 15-meter tall, 20-metre extensive statue modeled on the palace at Lazienki Park in Warsaw to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Japanese-Polish diplomatic relations in 2019.

“We needed to maintain repairing the statue so we struggled. It was troublesome to connect elements as a result of it was so heat,” he added.

The competition has been operating for 70 years and is a significant vacationer magnet, drawing 2.7 million guests final 12 months.

Sunao Kinoshita, a 75-year-old who had traveled up from close to Osaka, mentioned he “needed to see it as soon as earlier than I die”.

“Northern Japanese cities have been internet hosting snow festivals yearly. It will be a disgrace if such occasions ended” on account of world warming, he mentioned.

An everyday festival-goer from the area additionally laid the blame on world warming. “I used to be apprehensive the local weather was totally different this 12 months,” Ayaka Muto, 31, instructed AFP.

“Often we have now extra snow. I feel it is unusual. I really feel world warming is going on,” added Muto.

‘Critical and a catastrophe’ 

The principle theme of this 12 months’s competition, which runs till February 11, is the ethnic Ainu minority in Hokkaido, as the primary Ainu-themed nationwide museum, nicknamed Upopoy or “singing collectively” within the Ainu language, will open in April.

“We have by no means earlier than had statues with such highly effective Ainu traits,” Sato mentioned.

One statue featured an enormous Blakiston’s fish owl spreading its wings watching over sculptures of the museum and a ship. The owl is taken into account a god in Ainu tradition.

One other statue was based mostly on the Ainu delusion of a thunder god and a forest princess.

And a few have been turning to the character gods of Japan’s native Shinto faith to wish for extra snow.

In mid-January, a ski resort in western Hyogo prefecture invited a Shinto priest to carry a ceremony to ask the gods for snow, as did the organizers of the Yamagata snow competition in northern Japan.

“It isn’t that we do not have sufficient snow. We do not have snow in any respect. It is critical and it is a catastrophe,” Hyogo Governor Toshizo Ido instructed reporters final month.

The Sapporo competition organizers hope they will proceed the famed occasion sooner or later regardless of the warming local weather. 

“This 12 months marked the 71st occasion. It is a competition that we wish to keep on for future generations,” Sato mentioned.

“(However) that is about climate so all we will do is to wish.”

Your premium interval will expire in zero day(s)

shut x


Subscribe to get limitless entry Get 50% off now

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Climate Change

Fossil fuel divestment is the morally right thing to do



We have now seen the protests and heard College President Thomas LeBlanc’s personal phrases – it’s time for GW to divest from fossil fuels.

Whereas divestment is the proper factor to do, it’s extra sophisticated than it sounds and isn’t completely efficient except it’s accompanied by inexperienced insurance policies. It is also tougher than critics have urged as a result of GW holds its fossil gas investments by way of funding funds. The GW group nonetheless doesn’t know which fossil gas corporations the College invests in, how officers outline a fossil gas funding or how the act can influence the College’s funds. However we do know that three % of GW’s investments are in fossil fuels, and morally, we will do higher. 

Jeanna Franchesca Dela Cruz | Cartoonist

Divesting from fossil fuels is barely a small step towards a extra sustainable college and won’t positively influence local weather change. However divestment is greater than an try to cease local weather change – it’s a political assertion that claims the College acknowledges the specter of international warming and cares about college students’ futures past their levels. Most officers is not going to be round to see the planet burn, however college students might witness the worst of local weather change. Divestment would possibly simply be an announcement, however it’s the proper assertion to make.

Two peer faculties, Syracuse and Georgetown universities, have begun to take steps towards divestment. Syracuse discovered that divesting didn’t considerably harm their endowment, and Georgetown determined to divest over a number of years and thru a number of levels to restrict the influence divestment would have on its endowment. Officers may be involved that divestment would hurt the College’s endowment, however different faculties have proven that it might work if it’s a gradual change.

The College can nonetheless take motion to assist the atmosphere even when divestment doesn’t have an important influence. Divestment ought to function a platform for GW to make a bigger inexperienced push and tackle local weather change from a number of sides. The College might reinvest the endowment in the way forward for different fuels and be part of different universities in funding renewable energies. If fossil fuels signify three % of GW’s $1.eight billion endowment – about $54 million – the College might reinvest in sustainable energies, which might enhance GW’s $2 million sustainable funding fund. The College of British Columbia, which started divestment in 2019, established a $35 million sustainable funding fund. Middlebury School introduced they’d divest in 2019 and established a sustainable funding fund in 2014 – arguing that voluntary divestment shouldn’t be sufficient to forestall local weather change. Georgetown may also enhance efforts to spend money on renewable energies following its resolution to divest.

The College has improved sustainability by slicing again carbon emissions, including LEED-certified buildings and lowering water consumption. The Board of Trustees’ upcoming process pressure that scopes out the feasibility of divestment is without doubt one of the first tangible steps the College has taken towards divestment and officers ought to proceed to launch details about the group. Directors ought to launch extra details about the duty pressure and particularly state whether or not they assist the transfer as a substitute of protecting college students at the hours of darkness.

If directors hope to achieve the belief of scholars pushing for divestment, they should take extra tangible steps to advertise sustainability whereas prioritizing transparency. The College’s strategic pillars – the plan to enhance on sure elements of the College over the subsequent 5 years – don’t embody sustainability. Including sustainability because the fifth pillar might sign to college students that directors are prioritizing environmental points. Moreover, the College must be clear concerning the influence of divestment. The duty pressure must be chargeable for producing public statements and studies on the potential influence of divestment, and directors ought to make clear what specific investments make up the three % of the endowment that’s invested in fossil fuels.

Divesting from fossil fuels, and reinvesting in different energies, renewable fuels and environmentally pleasant corporations will make the transfer greater than a political assertion. The College ought to use divestment as a possibility to increase sustainability practices and lead the push towards local weather change.

The editorial board consists of Hatchet employees members and operates individually from the newsroom. This week’s piece was written by opinions editor Kiran Hoeffner-Shah and contributing opinions editor Hannah Thacker primarily based on conversations with The Hatchet’s editorial board, which consists of copy editor Natalie Prieb, managing director Leah Potter, design editor Olivia Columbus, sports activities editor Emily Maise and tradition editor Sidney Lee.

Continue Reading

Climate Change

Coalition’s handling of bushfires causes ‘substantial decline’ in support, ANU poll finds



Australia’s bushfire disaster has prompted a spike in concern concerning the surroundings, a success to the recognition of the Coalition and Scott Morrison and a drop in assist for brand spanking new coal mines, even amongst Coalition voters.

These are the conclusions of a ballot of three,249 Australians carried out by the Australian Nationwide College’s centre for social analysis and strategies, which discovered a “important and substantial decline” within the Coalition’s vote from 40% in October 2019 to 35% in January.

The ballot, launched on Tuesday, confirms the outcomes of the Newspoll and Guardian Important ballot {that a} horror summer season – wherein Morrison selected to vacation in Hawaii through the prolonged bushfire disaster that claimed no less than 33 lives and greater than 2,000 properties – has considerably impacted his recognition.

The lead researcher, professor Nicolas Biddle, stated the ANU ballot confirmed “fairly sturdy disapproval” of the federal authorities’s dealing with of bushfires and “particularly” with Morrison’s efficiency.

In a score of confidence in occasion leaders, Morrison scored a median of three.92 out of 10, a internet destructive rating and a hunch since he rated 5.25 in June 2019. Labor chief Anthony Albanese recorded a “small however important enhance” from 4.87 in June 2019 to five.04.

Confidence within the federal authorities additionally declined, with solely 27% of respondents reporting they had been “assured” or “very assured” in it, down 10.9% since October.

“This is without doubt one of the largest declines in confidence I’ve seen in such a brief time period,” Biddle stated.

State governments loved assist from 40.4% of respondents.

Labor was not the one beneficiary of voters’ transfer away from the Coalition, with lower than half of these altering their vote from the Coalition selecting Labor as a substitute (44%), whereas the remaining opted for the Greens (14%), one other occasion (25%) or didn’t know who they might vote for (17%).

Round half of respondents now checklist the surroundings as probably the most or second-most necessary situation in deciding their vote, up from nearly 42% in October.

The ANU election survey discovered a file variety of voters listed the surroundings or world warming as their high concern, making it a vote-winner for Labor on the 2019 election, though it was outweighed by the economic system, which weighed within the Coalition’s favour.

In accordance with the ballot, the proportion of people that stated world warming or the greenhouse impact would affect them elevated to 72%, whereas those who rated world warming a “very critical risk” has reached 33%.

Folks in non-capital cities had been much less more likely to see world warming and local weather change as a problem or risk and extra supportive of recent coal mines in contrast with folks in capital cities, however the ANU report discovered these variations “are a matter of levels, reasonably than path”.

Three-quarters of respondents reported being not directly affected by bushfires, together with having their vacation plans affected, being uncovered to smoke, feeling anxious or having mates or household threatened by property injury.

Publicity to the bushfires was related to a rise in whether or not an individual thought the surroundings was a serious situation, Biddle stated. “Many Australians modified their views, although, no matter publicity, with females and younger Australians the more than likely to be extra involved concerning the surroundings than beforehand.”

Some 37% of respondents stated the federal government ought to enable the opening of recent coal mines, down from 45.3% in June 2019.

The ballot discovered the best drop in assist for brand spanking new coal mines was amongst those that voted for the Coalition eventually 12 months’s federal election – from 72% assist in June 2019 to 57% in January 2020.

Those that stay in a non-capital metropolis had been much more more likely to have modified their vote from the Coalition, with an estimated likelihood greater than twice as giant as these in capital cities (all else being equal) – 21% in contrast with 10%.

In a warning for the federal government, the ANU report famous the outcomes steered that modifications in attitudes on local weather change and coal “should not restricted to those that wouldn’t have voted for the Coalition within the first place”.

“A disproportionate quantity of the swing did happen exterior of the capital cities, more likely to be key battlegrounds between now and the following election,” it stated.

The Morrison authorities is presently debating coal’s function in Australia’s power combine. Reasonable Liberals together with Dave Sharma and Trent Zimmerman have argued the federal government mustn’t again new coal crops in Australia, whereas the Nationals are exerting stress to maneuver past a feasibility examine for a brand new coal-fired coal plant at Collinsville in Queensland.

Labor MPs have sought to minimize solutions of a breakaway pro-coal group inside the occasion.

The ANU ballot used a nationally consultant pattern and was carried out within the fortnight from 20 January. Utilizing the Life in Australia panel, researchers may observe particular person voters’ modifications in voting intention between surveys.

Continue Reading

Climate Change

2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #7



2020 SkS Weekly Local weather Change & International Warming Digest #7

Posted on 16 February 2020 by John Hartz

Story of the Week… Toon of the Week… Coming Quickly on SkS… Local weather Suggestions Declare Evaluation… Poster of the Week… SkS Week in Evaluation… 

Story of the Week…

Iceberg twice the dimensions of Washington, D.C., breaks off Pine Island glacier in Antarctica

Pine Island Glacier


Story Highlights:

The Pine Island glacier “is one the fastest-retreating glaciers in Antarctica.”
Over the previous Eight years, the Pine Island glacier is dropping about 58 billion tons of ice per 12 months.
This “reveals the dramatic tempo at which local weather is redefining the face of Antarctica.”

International Warming: Pine Island loses 58 billion tons of ice yearly by Doyle Rice, World, USA At this time, Feb 13, 2020

Toon of the Week…

2020 Toon 7 


Coming Quickly on SkS…

Australia’s wildfires: Is that this the ‘new regular’? (Peter Sinclair)
How deniers preserve the consensus hole (John Cook dinner)
SkS New Analysis for Week #7 (Doug Bostrom)
Neighborhood alternative aggregation: A quick introduction (Bruce Lieberman)
‘What’s the very best form of automobile for the local weather?‘ (Sara Peach)
2020 SkS Weekly Local weather Change & International Warming Information Roundup #8 (John Hartz)
2020 SkS Weekly Local weather Change & International Warming Digest #8 (John Hartz) 

Local weather Suggestions Clam Evaluation…

CO2 emissions from human actions have imbalanced the atmospheric carbon funds, considerably contributing to local weather change, opposite to on-line declare

CLAIM: “Lower than 5% of carbon dioxide emissions are produced by man [… they] can’t trigger 30% of right now’s atmospheric carbon dioxide”

SOURCE: A Quick Record Of Details International Warming Alarmists Don’t Need To Face, Opinion by Editorial Board, Points & Insights, Aug 26, 2019


KEY TAKE AWAY: Carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gasoline launched by pure processes in addition to by human actions. The speedy rise in carbon emissions from burning fossil fuels starting throughout the Industrial Revolution upset the pure stability within the international carbon cycle. Human-caused carbon emissions outpaced the flexibility of pure carbon sinks to soak up extra carbon dioxide, leading to an increase in atmospheric concentrations from 280 to about 415 components per million in 2020.

CO2 emissions from human actions have imbalanced the atmospheric carbon funds, considerably contributing to local weather change, opposite to on-line declare, Edited by Katrin Kleemann, Local weather Suggestions, Feb 11, 2020

Poster of the Week…

2020 Poster 7 

SkS Week in Evaluation…  

Continue Reading


LUXORR MEDIA GROUP LUXORR MEDIA, the news and media division of LUXORR INC, is an international multimedia and information news provider reaching all seven continents and available in 10 languages. LUXORR MEDIA provides a trusted focus on a new generation of news and information that matters with a world citizen perspective. LUXORR Global Network operates and via LUXORR MEDIA TV.

Translate »