The measures implemented to combat the spread of coronavirus in the Netherlands and in neighboring countries have had the side effect of reducing air pollution, a study organized by Dutch meteorological agency KNMI reveals. By analyzing satellite measurements from between 2019 and 2020, the KNMI estimates that there has been a significant drop off in the amount air pollution above the Netherlands of anywhere between 20 and 60 percent.
The minimum temperature in Woensdrecht dropped to -6.1 degrees during the night from Monday to Tuesday, making it colder than any night in the entire winter, according to Weeronline. The coldest night of the winter was January 21, when the minimum dropped to -5.4 degrees.
A fossilized bird skull found in the limestone of Sint-Pietersberg near Maastricht 20 years ago, turned out to be the oldest known fossil of a modern bird found so far. The approximately 66.7 million-year-old skull belongs to an ancestor of chickens, ducks and geese.
The Netherlands generated more electricity from sustainable sources than from coal for the first time ever last year, Statistics Netherlands reported on Tuesday. The amount of energy produced also reached record high.
Last year the Netherlands produced 121 billion kWh of electricity, 6 percent more than in 2018. Electricity generated using coal decreased from over 27 billion kWh in 2018 to over 17 billion kWh last year. And energy generated from sustainable sources increased from nearly 19 billion kWh to nearly 22 billion kWh.
A bit of good news among the coronavirus gloom - the weather services in the Netherlands expect a very sunny week with spring-like temperatures. Wednesday may even see maximums climb to 19 degrees in the southeast of the country, according to Weerplaza.
The spring-like period starts on Tuesday, with plenty of sunshine, especially in the south. Weerplaza expects no rain, a moderate southwesterly wind, and maximums ranging between 10 and 15 degrees Celsius. Wednesday will be even milder, with maximums between 12 and 17 degrees, or maybe even up to 19 in the southeast.
Artis in Amsterdam and Ouwehands in Utrecht are all open on Friday with most of their indoor spaces closed. Public feedings, talks and presentations have been largely cancelled to prevent groups from bunching up. At Ouwehands, their indoor exhibits will close to the public beginning on Saturday, a spokesperson told NL Times.
The Limburg Water Board placed huge sandbags in Vlodrop to protect a castle against water overflowing from the Roer river. The Roer usually flows at 100 cubic meters of water per second, but that increased to 120 cubic meters per second on Thursday. The water level already reached its height and is now falling again, NOS reports.
Two Dutch mountain climbers died while on an expedition at the glacier in the Pitztal in Austria. They were found dead in their tent early on Saturday morning. It is believed they died from carbon monoxide poisoning, AD reports.
The Dutch men, aged 50 and 52, were found by other participants in the expedition. They were camping at a height of over 3 thousand meters at the time. The climbers slept in dome tents and had to prepare their own meals. It is believed that a gas stove used for this purpose leaked carbon monoxide into the tent.
Amsterdam's goal of reducing its CO2 emissions by 55 percent by 2030 is achievable, but will take a deal of effort, sustainability alderman Marieke van Doorninck said in a press release on Friday. The municipality plans to achieve this goal with measures like promoting solar panel and wind turbine installations, and getting homes off the natural gas network.
Fifteen European countries and 66 companies have entered into a partnership committed to making all plastic packaging recyclable and suitable for reuse. The European Plastic Pact started when Dutch Environment Minister Stientje van Veldhoven made agreements with Dutch companies and then turned to her European colleagues to do the same. She is presenting the plan in Brussels on Friday, NOS reports.
Those getting tired of the rain and clouds in the Netherlands, can look forward to some sunshine on Saturday, according to the weather forecast by Weeronline. Though the rainy weather will be back on Sunday, with a strong southwesterly wind blowing along the coast.
Last year 18 percent more electricity was generated from renewable sources in the Netherlands than the year before, compared to an 11 percent increase in 2018. Last year's increase can mainly be attributed to more solar power, according to figures released by Statistics Netherlands on Wednesday.
Last year 21.8 billion kilowatt-hours (kWh) of sustainable energy was generated in the Netherlands, compared to 18.5 billion kWh in 2018. Windmills were responsible for the largest share of this at 49 percent, followed by biomass at 26 percent, and solar power at 24 percent.
People from across the Netherlands and several places in Belgium reported seeing a very bright flash of light at around 00:40 a.m. on Tuesday. The flash was caused by a meteor moving through the atmosphere from an easterly direction, according to NOS.
This was the seventh consecutive winter in which temperatures in the Netherlands did not drop to -10 degrees Celsius or lower at the weather station in De Bilt, according to Weeronline. This winter was also the second warmest winter since temperature measurements started in 1901, and included the wettest February on record.
Over 11 thousand people get to celebrate their leap day birthdays in the Netherlands on Saturday. That includes six people who will turn 100 years old, said Statistics Netherlands (CBS).
The country is home to 466 children who were born on the last leap day, and another 475 who were born on February 29, 2012. People born in on leap day 2000 or later make up 2,368 of the country's leap babies.
Rain combined with a cold night mean that the roads in the Netherlands may be icy on Friday morning. Meteorological institute KNMI issued a code yellow warning for the entire country, except the Wadden Islands, advising road users to be careful and adjust their driving behavior accordingly.
February 2020 was the wettest February in Dutch history. An average of 142 millimeters of rain fell across the country, while 55 millimeters is normal for the Netherlands in February, according to Weeronline. The month was also exceptionally mild, going into the books as the second warmest February since temperature measurements started in 1901.
The storm winds that rocked the Netherlands on Saturday also resulted in the most ever wind power generated in the country - an average of 4 gigawatts of wind power was generated, compared to the usual 1.2 gigawatts. Over 30 percent of all electricity generated in the country on Saturday, was generated by wind turbines - a record, RTL Nieuws reports based on figures from energieopwek.nl.
Wednesday started out with showers all across the Netherlands, ranging from possible hail along the coast to snow in the south and east of the country. Meteorological institute KNMI issued a code yellow warning for Noord-Brabant, Limburg, Gelderland and Overijssel, warning motorists against icy roads.
"Chance of slipperiness. All traffic may be hindered. Adjust your driving behavior. Follow weather reports and warnings," KNMI warned.
A massive sandstorm on the Canary Islands on Sunday and Monday resulted in hundreds of flights being canceled, and thousands of tourists being trapped at the airports. One family from Enschede spent hours at the airport on Gran Canaria on Sunday and Monday with five young children, mother Elske Trieschnigg said to Tubantia.
Farmers are willing to take steps towards nature-inclusive agriculture, but only if there are the right financial incentives, according to a study by the Netherlands' environmental assessment agency PBL and the VU University Amsterdam among 950 members of farmers' association LTO, and another 150 farmers not associated with LTO.
The provinces of Noord-Holland, Zuid-Holland and Zeeland can expect strong winds with gusts up to 90 kilometers per hour on Monday afternoon, according to a code yellow weather warning issued by meteorological institute KNMI. The rest of the country can also expect a blustery day, with showers forecast for the afternoon.
Stormy weather prompted officials in Eindhoven to cancel their Carnaval parade this year out of concern for audience safety. The Lampegat Procession, named after Eindhoven's moniker during the festival, will not be rescheduled, organizers said in a statement posted online.
A windy Thursday morning is set to turn into a very blustery afternoon and evening, with meteorological institute KNMI issuing a Code Yellow warning covering the entire country. The strong winds are expected to continue off-and-on throughout the weekend - the third consecutive stormy weekend for the Netherlands as storms Ellen and Francis are looming.