California lifts some water restrictions after storms and floods

Water conservation restrictions have been relaxed for nearly seven million people in Southern California after the state's 11th atmospheric river this season helped ease drought.

But experts cautioned drought remains a long-term concern for the state.

"Dry conditions could return as soon as next year," local officials said.

BBC reports excess heat in the atmosphere is taking more moisture out of the earth and worsening droughts, though not all droughts are caused by climate change.

Severe weather warning remains for Samoa

There is wind, heavy rain and flood warning for the country.

According to the Met Services, a flood warning is in effect for all major rivers and vulnerable areas.

A broad area of low pressure system with an extensive cloud band and gale winds now lies over the Samoan Islands.

Meanwhile a Tropical Disturbance 08F lies Southeast with slight intensification though this system tends to move further away from Samoa.

This system is expected to maintain its southeast movement within the next 24hours with slight development.

Why rain can make the sunrise and sunset burn more brightly

The colours in sunrises and sunsets are caused by the light from the Sun being scattered through the atmosphere.

Meteorologist Rachel McInerney from the weather bureau (BoM) explains that as sunlight comes through at a lower angle through the atmosphere, the blue colour in the light spectrum gets weaker and weaker.

"Light is made up of different wavelengths ... and as the light of the Sun passes through our atmosphere we get what's called scattering of those light particles," she said.

Meet the storm chaser who gets a thrill from severe weather

"I was the kid that Mum used to yell out to get off the patio and stop sitting outside watching the lightning and the thunderstorms," he told ABC News Breakfast.

The freelance cameraman and passionate storm chaser has spent the last seven years chasing storms in Australia and travelling to the US to volunteer as a driver for tourist groups wanting to experience the same thrills.

Tornados are the big attraction in America and he's seen 63 in just the last few years. He also raced to meet Cyclone Yasi, which tore through Queensland in 2011.

Is there a link between climate change and diabetes?

Now, researchers are looking at whether climate change might be linked to another public health concern: Type 2 diabetes.

Between 1996 and 2009, as outdoor temperatures rose across the United States, so did the prevalence of diabetes, according to a study published in the journal BMJ Open Diabetes Research & Care on Monday.

Yes, this is a real house completely encased in ice

This igloo -- er, house -- is in Webster, New York, just outside of Rochester. The area is one of the snowiest in the country, thanks to freezing winter temperatures and the moisture of the nearby Great Lakes. In the case of this prank of nature, high winds joined in the party and coated the house in layer after layer of ice.

Photographer John Kucko captured the scene, and says the area has had some particularly nasty weather lately.

Fiji on flood alert

A heavy rain warning remains in force for the whole of the Fiji group as an active trough of low pressure is slowly moving over the country.

Media reports said as a result of the heavy rain all roads to Rakiraki are closed.

The town was badly hit by flooding in December when a tropical depression caused disruptions across much of Fiji.


Photo: Supplied (Flooding in Fiji's west, 15 December 2016). 

Pacific Met and Land services to map out future development

This comes as Australian funding for the existing Climate and Ocean Support Program is scheduled to end in June 2017 and many of its activities are transferring to SPC, (South Pacific Community), and SPREP, (Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme).

Tropical depression continues to affect Fiji

Fiji Times Online reports the inclement weather, which has brought heavy rainfall and strong winds in some parts of the country, is being caused by Tropical Depression TD17F, which was located about 310 kilometres north-north-west of Nadi at midday yesterday.

It is moving towards the country at 15km per hour.

Fiji Meteorological Service director Ravind Kumar said the concern for Fiji was the associated strong winds, rain and the likelihood of flooding of low-lying areas.

Weather site hacked

Metconnect, which provides forecasts for most countries, has its link to the Samoa weather service blocked by what claims to be the Turkish cyber army.

However the Samoa Meteorology Division website is accessible