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The site of a landslide caused by heavy rain in Kanzaki City, Saga Prefecture, Japan, on Sunday. Photo: STR/JIJI Press/AFP via Getty Images

Heavy rains across Japan triggered a mudslide and flooding on Sunday, as almost 2 million people were under evacuation orders, per the BBC.

Details: Rescuers found three of the eight people the mudslide had buried in the central Japanese prefecture of Nagano on Sunday, but three others were presumed dead, AP reports.

  • Mudslides on Friday left at least one person dead in Nagasaki and another person in Hiroshima seriously wounded.

The big picture: A 2020 report from the Japanese government found that the country averaged as many as 1,500 landslides annually over the previous decade, almost a 50% increase from the 10 years preceding it.

  • Researchers have found climate change is "intensifying the risk of heavy rain in Japan and elsewhere, because a warmer atmosphere holds more water," the Guardian notes.
  • A sweeping report published last week by the UN's IPCC concludes: "Human influence on the climate system is now an established fact."

Go deeper: UN report: Effects of climate change even more severe than we thought

Go deeper

Oct 12, 2021 - Science

Weather and climate disasters have cost the U.S. over $100 billion in 2021

Piles of debris is all that's left of a restaurant after heavy rain from remnants of Hurricane Ida came through in Manville, New Jersey, on Sept. 7. Photo: Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Weather and climate disasters in 2021 have killed 538 people in the U.S. and cost over $100 billion, according to a report from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Why it matters: The first nine months of 2021 saw the largest number of billion-dollar disasters in a calendar year so far, with 2021 on pace for second behind 2020, per the report.

38 mins ago - World

Biden's ambassador nominee: "China is not an Olympian power"

Nick Burns testifying before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Photo: Sarah Silbiger/Bloomberg via Getty Images

President Biden's nominee to serve as ambassador to China delivered a stark assessment of the challenges the U.S. faces in confronting Beijing, but stressed that the rising superpower is "not all-powerful" and the West retains "substantial" advantages.

The big picture: Nicholas Burns, a retired career diplomat and former U.S. ambassador to NATO, used his confirmation hearing Wednesday to echo the growing bipartisan consensus that China poses "the greatest threat to the security of our country and the democratic world" in the 21st century.

Scoop: U.S. and Israel to form team to solve consulate dispute

Secretary of State Antony Blinken (left) and Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid (right) meet in Washington. Photo: Andrew Harnik/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

The U.S. and Israel are planning to form a joint team to hold discreet negotiations on the reopening of the U.S. Consulate in Jerusalem, Israeli officials say.

Why it matters: The consulate handled relations with the Palestinians for 25 years before being shut down by then President Donald Trump in 2019. Senior officials in Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett's government see the consulate issue as a political hot potato that could destabilize their unwieldy coalition.