Around 950,000 cubic metres of wood belonging to the state-owned forestry
firm Lesy ČR have been damaged as a result of the windstorm Sabine that
swept through the Czech Republic on Monday and Tuesday. The damage has been
estimated at 250 to 300 million crowns.
The Czech Republic saw winds of up to 180 kilometres per hour in places, however they were not strong enough to be classified as a hurricane force.
The biggest calamity in state-owned forests so far was caused by hurricane Kyrill in 2007, which devastated more than six million cubic metres of timber.
The mountain rescue service in the Jeseníky Mountains in the north-east of the Czech Republic has declared a third-degree avalanche alert on a five point scale. Strong winds and up to thirty centimetres of fresh snow over the past few days are reported to have created a highly unstable layer of snow on many slopes. Skiers have been warned not to take risks or stray from marked trails
Ski resorts around the Czech Republic are witnessing one of the worst snow seasons on record, and according to long-term predictions by Czech climate experts, we can expect even less snow in the future. While the skiing season in the country’s mountains will be considerably shorter, white winters in the low-lying parts of the Czech Republic will soon become a distant memory.
Temperatures in the Czech Republic over the next four weeks should reach up
to 3 degrees Celsius during the day and fall below freezing point at night,
according to a regular monthly forecast issued by the Czech
Hydro-Meteorological Institute. Those values are in line with the long-term
average for the time of year.
In the following week precipitation is expected to be below the long-term average; the following three weeks should see average levels of rain or snow.
Prime Minister Andrej Babiš and his Visegrad Four counterparts met in
Prague on Thursday to discuss energy and climate change with Austrian
Chancellor Sebastian Kurz.
The V4 summit attended by the Austrian chancellor focussed on energy and EU climate change policy, areas where the positions of Austria and the V4 (which includes Slovakia, Poland and Hungary) differ significantly.
Unlike Austria, the V4 countries say achieving carbon neutrality by 2050 is not possible without building more nuclear power plants.Austria does not like the idea that EU money paid to help phase-out coal mining and boost alternate energy sources should be used for nuclear power.
PM Babiš argues that in the interests of “energy security” and ecomomic growth, the Czech Republic must build new nuclear units even if it contravenes European Union law.
The talks also covered EU funding and migration where the heads of government found more common ground.They agreed on the need to fight illegal migration,rejected the idea of obligatory migrant quotas and stressed the importance of defending the EU's outer borders.
Since the talks were held on the anniversary of the death of student martyr Jan Palach, the prime ministers laid flowers at the Palach memorial at the top end of Wenceslas Square where Palach set himself on fire in protest against growing public apathy to the Soviet-led invasion.
Last year was the second warmest in the Czech Republic since 1961,
according to data published on Wednesday by the Czech Hydro-Meteorological
Institute. The daily average temperature in 2019 was 9.5 degrees Celsius,
which was 1.6 degrees Celsius above the long-term average.
The hottest year since 1961 was 2018. The years 2014 and 2015 are tied for third hottest year in almost six decades.
In his traditional Christmas message to the nation, President Miloš Zeman began as usual on a positive note – highlighting the country’s economic successes – before turning to what he views as problematic areas. In a 16-minute televised address otherwise void of religious symbolism, Zeman also branded himself a “climate heretic” and urged Czechs to think for themselves rather than follow “false prophets”.
The head of CzechGlobe, the Global Change Research Institute at the Czech
Academy of Sciences, Michal Marek has described President Zeman’s
statements regarding climate change as “tragic and unacceptable “.
He said that the president had made claims which had been refuted many
times over long ago, and that attempts to play down mankind‘s
responsibility for climate change was extremely irresponsible. He said
Europe had a moral responsibility to lead the way by example.
In his Christmas message to the nation, Zeman said temperatures on Planet Earth had fluctuated for millions of years and he was not convinced that this was due to human activity rather than the forces of Nature. He said Europe should be careful in making commitments with regard to carbon neutrality since the impact of such a policy would be an impoverished continent.
December 24 is expected to be one of the warmest on record since monitoring
began, according to the Czech Hydro-Meteorological Institute.
Afternoon temperatures are expected to reach eight degrees Celsius and more which would place it among the ten warmest days at this time of year since regular meteorological measurements commenced at Prague's Klementinum observatory in 1752.
The warmest December 24th ever recorded was in 2012 when temperatures in Prague reached 12.7 degrees Celsius.
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