Record snowless winter in Japan
NHK -- Jan 16
Wide areas along the Sea of Japan coast are experiencing a winter with record-low amounts of snow.

The Meteorological Agency says snowfall is at its lowest level since 1961, when the earliest available records were kept.

Agency officials say that snowfall in December was only zero to 47 percent of the average in various spots along coastal areas.

They also say the snowless condition have continued until now. The amount of snow was zero to 28 percent of the average so far in January.

The agency explains that westerly winds are blowing over northern Japan, blocking a cold air mass from moving south. It forecasts the snowless situation will continue for one month.

No snow accumulation was recorded on Wednesday morning in the city of Yamagata, northeastern Japan, where snow normally lays about 20 centimeters deep at this time of year.

Organizers of a snow festival in the area scheduled to start in two weeks' time say they are worried if they can hold the event as planned. They asked a Shinto priest to pray for snow on Tuesday.

Hiroki Sato, who serves as the head of the festival organizing committee, said they had no choice but to ask God for help.

News source: NHK
Jul 10
The number of new daily coronavirus infections in Tokyo hit a single-day record of 224 on Thursday, the metropolitan government said. (Japan Today)
Jul 10
Officials of Tokyo's Shinjuku Ward say they will offer 100,000 yen, or about 930 dollars, to residents infected with the coronavirus. (NHK)
Jul 10
A 24-year-old woman in custody after she caused the death of her 3-year-old daughter by leaving her alone at their residence for more than one week barricaded her inside with furniture, police have revealed, reports Fuji News Network (July 9). (tokyoreporter.com)
Jul 10
Japan will tighten its criteria for supporting exports of coal-fired power plants amid criticism that the practice goes against global efforts to curb global warming. (Japan Times)
Jul 10
The tourism industry in Japan came to a screeching halt earlier this year with the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, as pretty much the whole country stayed home for both cherry blossom season and the Golden Week vacation period, two of the spring’s busiest travel periods. (soranews24.com)
Jul 10
The Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic organizing committee will issue ticket refunds to people unable to attend the games due to their one-year postponement, sources close to the matter said Thursday. (Japan Times)
Jul 09
Pounding rain that already caused deadly floods in southern Japan was moving northeast Wednesday, battering large areas of Japan's main island, swelling more rivers, triggering mudslides and destroying houses and roads. At least 58 people have died in several days of flooding. (Japan Today)
Jul 09
Struggling businesses and other clients have left Japanese banks with record outstanding loans for a third straight month. (NHK)
Jul 09
Carlos Ghosn, the former Nissan Motor Co chairman, wired $862,500 last year to a company managed by one of the two men who later helped him escape from Japan, U.S. prosecutors said in a Tuesday court filing. (Japan Today)
Jul 08
In a move that will affect Japanese studying in the U.S., the government there said Monday that international students attending American universities will have to depart the country or transition to another college if their classes are moved entirely online for the fall semester amid the coronavirus pandemic. (Japan Times)