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May 27, 2016 / 19 Iyar, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘weather’

Jews Help Alberta, Canada Residents Fleeing from Fort McMurray Wildfire

Monday, May 9th, 2016

Jewish groups are stepping forward to help more than 100,000 residents of the Fort McMurray area in Alberta, Canada, who were forced to flee their homes in the face of a wildfire that continues to burn unabated.

The Global Leaks news site managed to upload some of the nightmare faced by residents on to YouTube.

The fire was first detected about a week ago, and so far has blazed through an area about 621 square miles wide, about the size of Mexico City. It is now about 18 miles from Saskatchewan, a less populated area, and residents there have been warned to close their windows and doors due to the smoke.

The Calgary Jewish Federation has said it will donate $25,000 from its emergency relief fund to help those who were forced to abandon their homes to the fire.

Other Jewish groups in Ontario and Edmonton are also gathering funds to help the now-homeless refugees living in camps in the oil sands and elsewhere.

Israel’s IsraAid humanitarian aid group has a volunteer on site, and is preparing to send a team to Canada as well, according to the organization.

More than 500 firefighters are battling the blaze with air tankers, helicopters and other heavy equipment.

It could be “months” before it is brought under full control, officials said. The fire is expected to be the most expensive natural disaster in Canadian history, with insurance costs alone already running into billions of dollars, according to the BBC.

Some 1,600 homes and other buildings have been lost to the fire so far. The power grid in Fort McMurray is damaged and the water now is undrinkable. Entire neighborhoods are destroyed.

At least 25 percent of Canada’s oil production has been stopped by the fire; the effect on the country’s economy has not yet been calculated.

Hana Levi Julian

Israel’s Cup of Blessings ‘Raineth’ Over With Flash Floods

Monday, February 22nd, 2016

A veritable downpour of blessings rained down from the skies over Israel on Monday, flooding roads, parking lots and various tourist sites.

In the north, the Mount Hermon ski resort was closed to visitors due to the poor weather conditions.

Moving further south, The north-south Highway 90 was shut down in both directions near the Ein Gedi nature reserve, north of the Arugot River, due to flooding.

Around the same area, the Tamar Regional Council district canceled school sessions due to road conditions. Kibbutz Ein Gedi is located within the Tamar region, as is Masada and the Dead Sea hotel strip at Ein Bokek.

Further west, the sparkling new Be’er Sheva “Grand Canyon” Mall also caved to the weather: a section of the roof collapsed under the weight of the downpour.

All the way to the south, less than a mile from the Gaza border, the city of Sderot found some of its cars nearly swimming in the rainwater. Streets were flooded nearly halfway up the hubcaps of some of the cars.

In other towns around the country, some of the parking lots were flooded nearly to the car trunks.

Throughout the Negev, the average amount of rainfall was approximately three centimeters (1.2 inches). Tel Aviv was close – 2.7 centimeters (a bit over an inch), Haifa had nearly 2 centimeters (almost an inch) and Jerusalem saw four centimeters (about an inch and a half.) In the Golan Heights, about 45 centimeters of rain was measured in some areas (nearly 2 inches).

What all this means is that the water level in Israel’s biggest drinking water reservoir – Lake Kinneret, the Sea of Galilee – has risen by another 1.5 centimeters due to the rain. The level is now -212.65 meters below sea level, which is 3.85 meters below the top red line, at which point the lake would be filled to capacity.

The rain is forecast to continue throughout Monday.

Hana Levi Julian

Lake Kinneret Rising Due to Sabbath Rain

Sunday, February 7th, 2016

Israel’s Water Authority announced Sunday that due to the rain this weekend some 60 mm of water was gathered in cisterns in the northern region and a total of 30 mm of water fell in the center of the country.

Since the Sabbath, the water level in Lake Kineret, also known as the Sea of Galilee, rose another two centimeters, nearly one inch.

The Kinneret is Israel’s largest reservoir of drinking water.

The level of the lake now stands at -212.77 cm, which is 23 cm above the lower red line — the mark which is considered dangerously low.

The Kinneret lacks only 3.97 meters more until it is filled to capacity — and rain is predicted for parts of Israel on Sunday.

Hana Levi Julian

Water Level Rising in Lake Kinneret

Wednesday, January 20th, 2016

The water level in Lake Kinneret (Sea of Galilee) rose again last night by three centimeters (a bit over one inch) after heavy rain Tuesday.

Israel’s Water Authority reported the lake now stands at 212.85 meters below sea level.

The level is four meters below the lake’s optimal capacity.

Lake Kinneret is the main source of drinking water for the population in the State of Israel.

Hana Levi Julian

Snow Falling on Mount Hermon, Winter Storm Starting in North

Thursday, December 31st, 2015

The winter season has finally arrived in Israel – for real – and the winter weather is here along with it. Hot chocolate, soup and fresh crusty bread with all the extras are definitely in order for the next few days.

Skiing fans are celebrating the light snow that began falling Thursday morning on Mount Hermon. But bundle up; it’s cold out there! According to reports from the Israel Meteorological Service (IMS), more snow is expected to blanket the mountain peaks by Thursday night.

The Hermon area is closed to visitors due to the winter storm conditions so the celebrations are a little premature. It’s going to take a little bit before the ski resorts can get their places underway.

Children in the Golan Heights likewise can expect to have a reason to pull out their sleds by Friday: the white stuff is predicted to drop upon the region in the Golan as well.

The snowstorm will send a few flurries towards the Galilee region, but that area is more likely to see raindrops than flakes – lots of rain.

Israel’s Water Authority in particular is hoping that the next few days of precipitation will be enough to restore the four centimeter drop in the water level of Lake Kinneret that was found when the basin was measured this week. The lake, also known as the Sea of Galilee, is considered Israel’s largest reservoir for drinking water.

Plunging temperatures, whipping winds and stormy conditions are expected elsewhere around the country starting towards the end of the day on Thursday and continuing to Sunday.

Likewise, the central and southern regions in Israel can expect to see rainfall. Flash flooding warnings have been issued in the Negev and around the Judean desert, particularly in the Dead Sea region.

Hana Levi Julian

The Snowman Cometh

Tuesday, December 29th, 2015

The long-awaited winter storm, first reported by The Jewish Press.com here yesterday, is strengthening and is turning into a more of a monster than first predicted, with snow possible in Jerusalem.

Weather models still are not in agreement on how far south the snow will fall and if it will accumulate, but most models indicate that there will be snow on the ground in the Jerusalem in areas 900 meters high, which includes Neve Daniel in Gush Etzion and Hebron.

Snow is expected in Safed (Tzfat) and other areas in the upper Galilee and possibly in the central Golan Heights. More importantly, there will be rain, and lots of it, with up to four inches in some areas.

The precipitation now is expected to last through Saturday morning.

Very light and occasional rain fell in several areas of Israel Tuesday afternoon, and more will fall on Wednesday, but the serious stuff begins early Thursday morning.

Rain will fall from the north to the northern Negev with isolated thunderstorms, strong winds, and a strong chance of flash floods in the Arava and Dead Sea areas.

The white stuff will cover the Hermon and the upper Golan Heights and spread to higher peaks in the north and central regions.

If any snow accumulates in the Jerusalem area, it won’t be around for very long caucus temperatures are expected to rise on Sunday, although still below the norm for the season.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Lake Kinneret ‘Under the Weather,’ Water Level Dropping

Tuesday, December 29th, 2015

Lake Kinneret is a little ‘under the weather’ these days, according to Israel’s Water Authority.

The northern body of water which is Israel’s main source of drinking water is also known as the Sea of Galilee. It started this year “rainy season” with a head start but now is showing signs of heading into a drought level.

Israel’s Water Authority reported Tuesday that the lake’s water level has dropped four centimeters below the “lower red line,” and stands at 213.04 meters below sea level.

“Kinneret water level declines at the end of December are unusual circumstances, occurring most recently only in 2008,” the Water Authority said in a statement.

On Tuesday morning, a very brief flash of rain swept across the northern Negev – but it had no effect on the level of the lake.

It is hoped that the winter storm expected this coming weekend will bring with it enough precipitation to boost the basin back up to where it should be at this time of year.

The water level in Lake Kinneret really needs to reach above the higher red line in order to avoid a drought alert for the summer months.

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/lake-kinneret-under-the-weather/2015/12/29/

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