Saturday, January 15, 2011

Snow in the tropics?!?

Is the "end of the world as we know it" approaching?

I've read earlier today that there's snow in Hawaii!! This US state, which has a typical tropical climate (according to Wikipedia), is one of the 49 states to experience snowfall this year. The only exception, currently, is Florida. It's interesting because snow is not normally seen in tropical parts of the world... well, maybe on mountain tops, just like in the Hawaiian islands.

After a quick search in the Internet, I found out that snow in the tropics is not so rare after all. Bummer. Here are a few links showing the other places where snow falls near the equator:




If snow is indeed possible in Hawaii and in other tropical places, would the Philippines also experience snow sometime in the future? If snow replaces frost in the colder regions of the country, I'm sure that some enterprising Pinoy will develop a real winter wonderland there. That will be a booming business... just look at the winter attractions that are available in the country during the Christmas holidays. On the downside, upland agriculture will be in disarray because of the unfavourable weather conditions. 

When winter becomes a permanent feature of Philippine climate, it would indeed be "the end of the world as we (Pinoys) know it".

The last time I got excited about the possibility of seeing snow in my hometown was when the Mount Pinatubo ash fall reached Calamba, Laguna in the 1990s. Everything on the ground was white and the sky was grey. We siblings started playing in the "snow" until I asked my the parents: if this is snow, why isn't it cold? They knew all along that it was volcanic ash.