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Climate Change Causes First Tokyo November Snow in 54 Years

Nov 25, 2016 04:00 AM EST
Tokyo' s First Snow Coverage
Tokyo is currently experiencing its first November snowfall since 1962, 40 days in advance of the expected snowfall arrival.
(Photo : Koichi Kamoshida/Getty Images)

Climate change has caused many unusual weather occurrences around the globe. Tokyo for one is currently experiencing its first November snow in 54 years.

In a surprising turn of events, the Japan capital of Tokyo was treated to a snow show beginning in the month of November. This is due to an untimely drop in temperature. Because of the cold front, some public transport systems experienced a delay in the onset of the snow.

The East Japan Railway Company said that the Ome and Chuo lines were temporarily suspended due to sagging of tree branches from snow, while train lines such as Keio and Seibu also experienced a delay, according to Japan Today. The November snowfall also increased the demand for heating; thus, the increase in electricity usage that went up to about 95 percent according to the Tokyo Electric Power Co. Last Thursday morning, Nov. 24, the temperature in Tokyo dropped to near zero.

The first November snow after 54 years occurred more than a month in advance of the expected annual snowfall called the "hatsuyuki." The last time it snowed in Tokyo was in 1962, but in a smaller quantity that did not even accumulate in huge number and are not visible on the ground. But this year's snowfall on a November looks heavier than that of the 1962 occurrence.

Because of that, this current snowfall is said to be the first snow that has accumulated on Tokyo ground on a November since authorities started recording from 1875, according to BBC. The Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) already issued some warning to prepare the residents for snow-related incidents such as icy roads and the collapse of makeshift greenhouses.

Aside from Tokyo, Utsunomiya and Yokohama also experienced an early snowfall since the morning of Nov. 24 just like Tokyo. Due to the drop in temperature and the cold air mass, the snow easily spreads over Tokyo and the nearby region.

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