Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.8 Earthquake hits the Santa Cruz Islands.

5.3 Earthquake hits Fiji.

5.1 Earthquake hits the Prince Edward Islands.

5.0 Earthquake hits southern California, USA.

5.0 Earthquake hits Taiwan.

Southern California has been hit by multiple moderate Earthquakes today with the epicenter close to Anza. A mini swarm of four Earthquakes of 2.5, 4.6, 4.7 and 4.7 magnitude were felt within 16 minutes.

Nature – Images

Sinkholes:

A 30 feet wide by 12 feet deep Sinkhole has opened in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

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A sinkhole created by Tropical Storm Agatha in Guatemala City, Guatemala, on May 29, 2010.

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Environment

Tropical Forests Unexpectedly Resilient to Climate Change

Tropical forests are unlikely to die off as a result of the predicted rise in atmospheric greenhouse gases this century, a new study finds. The analysis refutes previous work that predicted the catastrophic loss of the Amazon rainforest as one of the more startling potential outcomes of climate change.

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In the most extensive study of its kind, an international team of scientists simulated the effect of business-as-usual emissions on the amounts of carbon locked up in tropical forests across Amazonia, Central America, Asia and Africa through to 2100. They compared the results from 22 different global climate models teamed with various models of land-surface processes. In all but one simulation, rainforests across the three regions retained their carbon stocks even as atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration increased throughout the century.

The fertilizing effect of carbon dioxide, which boosts plant growth, counteracts the release completely if it is as large as expected due to climate change.

That tropical forests will retain their carbon stocks long term gives a major boost to policies aimed at keeping forests intact, such as the United Nations’ REDD programme on reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation.

But there may be more immediate threats to forests in the next 20 to 30 years from extreme weather events. And those events will only become more common in a warming world.

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2,800 Dead Pigs in Shanghai River, China

A surge in the dumping of dead pigs upstream from Shanghai — with more than 2,800 carcasses floating into the financial hub through Monday — has followed a police campaign to curb the illicit trade in sick pig parts.

The effort to keep infected pork off dinner tables may be fuelling new health fears, as Shanghai residents and local media fret over the possibility of contamination of the city’s water supply, though authorities say no contamination has been detected.

Authorities have been pulling out the swollen and rotting pigs, some with their internal organs visible, since Friday.

China dead pigs

Volcanos

Roundup of Global Volcanic Activity:

Tungurahua (Ecuador): IG reports violent strombolian activity with incandescent blocks being thrown up to 500 m distance onto the upper outer slopes of the crater. Ashfall was reported from the sectors of El Manzano and Choglontus. A strong steam, gas and ash plume, visible on NOAA satellite data, is drifting westwards.

Storms and Floods

Cyclone Tim is forming off northern Queensland – Australia’s eighth cyclone of the season is likely to form in the Gulf of Carpentaria on Wednesday.

Storm in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Heavy storm in Sao Paulo, the largest city in Brazil bringing floods and landslides which killed two including a 14-year-old girl.

The storm also damaged the shopping continental mall in the Jaguare district but nobody was injured.

Brazil flood photo

Severe Cold Across Europe

Hundreds of drivers have been left stranded after snow brought some roads in Sussex, England to a standstill. Tailbacks of up to 15 miles were reported on the A23 between Crawley and Brighton, with some motorists stuck for up to eight hours. Police said snow and ice had caused hazardous conditions and officers were trying to help gritting lorries through to treat roads.

Heavy snow in north-western Europe is causing severe travel disruption, including the cancellation of hundreds of flights via Frankfurt and Paris.

Heavy storm in Ashanti, Ghana

Heavy storm has affected the people in Kodie, Mpobi, Ahenkro, Ahenkro- Kwamang and Ankaase area of Ghana.

The storm has also damaged the Kodie Junior High School.