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You pray for rain,
you gotta deal with the mud too.
That's a part of it.

- Denzel Washington

A RARE weather phenomenon caused the “extreme” rainfall that left widespread flooding in at least two cities yesterday morning, said weather specialists.

In less than two hours, they measured 35.7 millimeters (mm) of rainfall, said Alfredo Quiblat, Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pag-asa) Mactan senior weather specialist.

In contrast, the normal January rainfall ranges between 100 mm and 110 mm for one month, or a daily average of only 3.2 to 3.5 mm of rainfall. Quiblat attributed the “extreme rainfall amount” to the La Niña phenomenon or the cooling of the surface water of oceans, which disrupts global weather conditions.

Environmentalists called on local officials to make an urgent shift to climate change adaptation measures. Oscar Tabada, Pag-asa Mactan station chief, called yesterday’s phenomenon a “cloudburst.”