Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.9 earthquake hits Vanuatu.

5.6 earthquake hits the Kuril Islands.

5.3 earthquake hits near the coast of central Peru.

5.2 earthquake hits southern Xinjiang, China.

5.0 earthquake hits the Kuril Islands.

5.0 earthquake hits the Solomon Islands.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

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In the Western Pacific Ocean: Tropical Storm 29w (Kammuri), located approximately 340 nm east-southeast of Da Nang, Vietnam, is tracking southwestward at 08 knots.

In the Indian Ocean: Tropical cyclone (tc) 06a (Pawan), located approximately 462 nm south-southeast of Salalah, Oman, is tracking westward at 07 knots.

In the Southern Hemisphere: Tropical cyclone 03s (Ambali), located approximately 560 nm west of Diego Garcia, is tracking south-southwestward at 09 knots.

Tropical cyclone 02s (Two), located approximately 867 nm north-northwest of St Denis, is tracking west-southwestward at 04 knots.

NewsBytes:

Spain – Around a hundred people have been evacuated and dozens more rescued from their homes after severe flooding hit parts of the Murcia region of Spain. The community of San Javier, one of the worst affected areas, registered 126 litres of floodwaters per square metre in less than two hours and led to 40 people being rescued from their homes and stranded vehicles. It is part of the latest “Gota Fria” phenomenon, which literally translates to “cold drop” in English, and refers to severe rainfall during autumn.

Kenya – At least 132 people have been killed in floods and landslides caused by unusually heavy rainfall in Kenya. Around 17,000 were displaced and 11,000 livestock swept away by strong waters. More than half of the country has been affected. The rains have helped alleviate the drought conditions across the country that caused a food shortage and added to inflationary pressures, but have damaged infrastructure and farmland.

Wildlife

Birds are shrinking – Study

Birds are getting smaller. So shows an analysis of migratory birds that died after colliding into buildings in Chicago and were collected as specimens for the Field Museum of Natural History.

David Willard, a Field Museum ornithologist, has measured the Windy City’s dead birds since 1978. Data from his calipers and scales reveal decades-long trends in bird bodies: Their legs, on average, are growing shorter. They have lost weight. Their wings are getting slightly longer.

These changes are present in nearly all of the species he measured, according to a study of 70,716 bird specimens from almost 40 years published Wednesday in the journal Ecology Letters. Morphing birds, Willard and his colleagues say, reflect a changing climate.

The study authors examined precipitation, vegetation and other factors that could contribute to bird size. They determined an increase in summer temperatures is the strongest predictor for smaller birds.

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Global Warming

30 Year Old Climate Change Warning Vindicated

‘It is time to stop waffling so much and say that the evidence is pretty strong that the greenhouse effect is here.’ – Dr. James Hansen

This sounds like a comment that might have been overheard in Madrid this week, where the U.N. is yet again huddling to discuss the climate crisis.

No doubt similar sentiments were expressed among those delegates in recent days but this was the viewpoint offered as many as three decades ago from NASA scientist James Hansen, who was giving congressional testimony.

Dr. Hansen is considered to be among the first climatologists to sound the alarm on man-made global warming in this context, including charting a projection for just how hot conditions could get by 2019.

As 2019 draws to a close, the year is on course to be among the top three warmest years on record. Data issued this week shows that the world continues to increase the amount of heat-trapping carbon dioxide it pumps into the air, led by China and India, but it’s not rising as fast as in the previous couple years.

Disease

Measles – Tonga

In an update on the measles outbreak in Tonga, health officials report as of Monday, 440 cases of confirmed or suspected measles have been identified in Tonga, an additional 46 cases since the last report. All 46 of the cases from the past week have been from the main island of Tongatapu.

Newcastle Disease – Romania

After an absence of more than two years, Newcastle disease has returned to Romania.

Affected by the outbreak of Newcastle disease was a flock of almost 6,900 birds, according to the official report to the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE).

Nature – Images

Interesting Images

Some Wildlife Photography Award Finalists

A hunting Pallas’ cat in the Mongolian grasslands.

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A mother polar bear and her cubs in Wapusk National Park, Manitoba,

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A humpback whale feeding off the coast of Great Bear Rainforest, British Columbia, Canada

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Some well-disguised reindeer in Svalbard, Norway.

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An orangutan being forced to box in a show in Safari World, Bangkok.

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Volcanos

Global Volcanic Activity – New Activity for the week of 27 November – 03 December 2019

White Island | North Island (New Zealand) : On 3 December GeoNet reported that unrest at White Island had continued during the previous week. Explosive gas-and-steam-driven fountaining occurred from the active vent area on the W side of the 1978/90 Crater Complex, near the 2012 lava dome, at the back of the crater lake. Mud and debris were ejected 20-30 m above the vent. The Volcanic Alert Level remained at 2 and the Aviation Colour Code remained at Yellow.

Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.6 earthquake hits the Molucca Sea.

5.6 earthquake hits New Ireland, Papua New Guinea.

5.3 earthquake hits near the east coast of Honshu Japan.

5.2 earthquake hits the Kuril Islands.

5.1 earthquake hits eastern Kazakhstan.

5.0 earthquake hits the Hindu Kush, Afghanistan.

5.0 earthquake hits Tonga.

5.0 earthquake hits Minahasa, Sulawesi, Indonesia.

5.0 earthquake hits the Molucca Sea.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

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In the Western Pacific Ocean: Tropical Storm 29w (Kammuri), located approximately 285 nm west of Manila, Philippines, is tracking west-northwestward at 08 knots.

In the Indian Ocean: Tropical cyclone (tc) 06a (Six), located approximately 864 nm east-southeast of Djibouti (city), is tracking north-northwestward at 09 knots.

Tropical cyclone 07a (Seven), located approximately 606 nm south of Karachi, Pakistan, is tracking westward at 05 knots.

NewsBytes:

Uganda – Landslides triggered by heavy rainfall have claimed lives of four people in eastern Ugandan district of Bududa. A number of houses were also damaged.

Philippines – Typhoon Kammuri barreled across the Philippines with fierce winds and rain Tuesday, leaving at least four people dead, forcing hundreds of thousands of villagers to abandon high-risk communities and prompting officials to shut Manila’s international airport. Kammuri toppled trees and electrical posts, ripped off tin roofs as it blew across island provinces in the southern fringes of the main northern Luzon island before blowing into the South China Sea.

Disease

Monkeypox – England

In 2018, health officials in England reported three monkeypox cases– two imported cases in travelers from Nigeria and one in a healthcare worker. Today, health officials again report a monkeypox case in the country. According to Public Health England (PHE), the patient is believed to have contracted the infection while visiting Nigeria.

Measles – Florida, USA

The Florida Department of Health continues to battle a hepatitis A outbreak that has grew to more than 3,700 cases in two years. During the week ending November 30, officials reported 38 additional outbreak cases, bringing the total since Jan 2018 to 3,711 and 3,163 since the beginning of this year. Fifty-one deaths have been reported.

Samoa – Measles

Samoan officials, in an update today, shows that the measles epidemic has crossed the 4,000 case mark since it began in early September. With an additional 171 measles cases reported in the past day, the outbreak total has now reached 4,052. In addition, the measles related death toll has reached 60.

Uganda – Rift Valley Fever

Uganda health authorities notified the World Health Organization of a fatal Rift Valley fever (RVF) case from Obongi district.

Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

6.1 earthquake hits offshore Tarapaca, Chile.

5.3 earthquake hits the Bougainville region, Papua New Guinea.

5.3 earthquake hits offshore Tarapaca, Chile.

5.0 earthquake hits the Nicobar Islands off India.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

In the Western Pacific Ocean: Typhoon 29w (Kammuri), located approximately 85 nm south of Manila, Philippines, is tracking westward at 16 knots.

In the Indian Ocean: Tropical cyclone (tc) 06a (Six), located approximately 889 nm east-southeast of Djibouti (city), is tracking north-northwestward at 04 knots.

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NewsBytes:

Nepal – A mudslide in Pokhara has claimed lives of four persons and left one other missing. The mudslide occurred at the time the workers were constructing sewage channels alongside the Bhalam-Mauja rural road.

India – The government of the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu says at least 25 people have died in recent floods that inundated low-lying areas and hundreds more have been evacuated to relief camps.

Philippines – Powerful typhoon Kammuri was blowing across the Philippines on Tuesday after slamming ashore overnight in an eastern province, damaging houses and an airport and knocking out power after tens of thousands of people fled for safer ground.

Wildlife

‘Litter Ball’ Found Inside a Dead Sperm Whale

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When workers with a whale strandings agency in Scotland performed a necropsy on a recently beached sperm whale, they found a gruesome surprise: The animal had died with around 220 lbs. (100 kilograms) of trash in its stomach. The young male sperm whale (Physeter macrocephalus) washed ashore on Nov. 28 at Luskentyre beach in Scotland’s Outer Hebrides islands. It died shortly thereafter.

Fishing nets, rope bundles, tubes and an assortment of plastic garbage formed a compact mass — a so-called litter ball — inside the 20-ton whale, “and some of it it looked like it had been there for some time.

While the amount of garbage inside the whale was “horrific,” the animal appeared to be in good health and wasn’t malnourished, according to the post. It’s likely that the trash ball interfered with digestion, but SMASS experts didn’t find any signs that the ingested debris blocked the whale’s intestines.

Australia’s Extinct Species

It’s well established that unsustainable human activity is damaging the health of the planet. The way we use Earth threatens our future and that of many animals and plants. Species extinction is an inevitable end point.

It’s important that the loss of Australian nature be quantified accurately. To date, putting an exact figure on the number of extinct species has been challenging. But in the most comprehensive assessment of its kind, research has confirmed that 100 endemic Australian species living in 1788, such as the Tasman tiger, are now validly listed as extinct.

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Global Warming

UN Chief Warns of ‘Point of No Return’ on Climate Change

U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said Sunday that the world’s efforts to stop climate change have been “utterly inadequate” so far and there is a danger global warming could pass the “point of no return.”

Speaking before the start Monday of a two-week international climate conference in Madrid, the U.N. chief said the impact of rising temperatures — including more extreme weather — is already being felt around the world, with dramatic consequences for humans and other species.

He noted that the world has the scientific knowledge and the technical means to limit global warming, but “what is lacking is political will.”

Wildfires

Wildfires – Australia

More homes are threatened after an out-of-control bushfire burned through to the coast in southern New South Wales as thick smoke from blazes surrounding Sydney continues to blanket the city. The more than 30,000-hectare Currowan bushfire near Batemans Bay on the state’s south coast has already destroyed at least one home. The NSW Rural Fire Service says the blaze is spreading quickly towards coastal areas around Pebbly Beach, Depot Beach and Pretty Beach.

Some 111 bush and grass fires were burning across NSW on Tuesday evening with more than 54 uncontained.