The new year arrived in a totally different manner in Spain. Some of the consequences of climate change were clearly reflected in the first days of the year by Filomena. The storm touched Spanish territory on the 6th of January 2021 and affected the whole country until the 11th of the same month. Even after the snow and rain stopped, there were still remnants of its effects. 

Spain was filled with snow, something that had not happened since 1971. As told by specialists, the effects of the storm have been devastating, especially for a country like Spain, which is not well prepared for these situations.

The storm created a big curtain of snow, more than 30cm, in many autonomous communities of Spain. Madrid was one of the most affected. Around 1.25 million kilos of snow fell in the capital and in the perimeter cities. 

At first, the storm was a beautiful situation for the city. People went outside, enjoying the snowy streets. Many of them were even skiing in the improvised resort of Madrid. Streets were full of snow and so were cars, trees, and highways. 

But, after a matter of hours, the city hall called the capital zone a risk-area and recommended remaining inside. Public transport couldn’t continue working properly. The situation in the whole city worsened the connectivity of highways and forced a closure of the Barajas Airport for the whole weekend. Groceries stores were bare.

As days passed, the M-30 remained covered with snow, preventing people from passing by. The city spent around 1400 million euros to restore the damages to the city.

Insurance, cleaning, and tree preservation composed much of the 1400 million euros spent. In fact, one of the most iconic destinations in Madrid, Retiro, had to be closed down because of the danger it presented. 

The city dedicated the next few days to clean and reactivate the economy and connectivity with the rest of the world. Overall, they achieved this goal. However, children had school postponed for an extra week. 

Photo: Gabriel Bouys/AFP/Getty Images

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