Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

7.3 Earthquake hits the South Sandwich Islands. The South Sandwich Islands are uninhabited and lie in the Southern Atlantic off the coast of Argentina.

5.9 Earthquake hits the Bougainville region, Papua New Guinea.

5.8 Earthquake hits Tonga.

5.4 Earthquake hits Taiwan.

5.3 Earthquake hits Taiwan.

5.3 Earthquake hits near the east coast of Honshu, Japan.

5.2 Earthquake hits central Peru.

5.2 Earthquake hits near the east coast of Kamchatka, Russia.

5.1 Earthquake hits the Dominican Republic.

5.1 Earthquake hits the Jan Mayen Islands.

Storms and Floods

NewsBytes:

Heavy rain triggers flooding in Lahore, Pakistan.

Lahore flood photo

Severe weather in New Zealand has cut power and disrupted travel. Extreme weather hitting much of the country has cut power to thousands of homes in Taranaki and caused the cancellation of flights and ferries in and out of Wellington. Electricity provider Powerco says strong winds have downed power lines in Taranaki, cutting power to 11,000 homes. Winds of up to 130 kilometres per hour downed trees, which brought down overhead lines. Black ice was causing chaos on roads in the South Island.

The National Disaster Warning Centre in Thailand has warned the people in Chanthaburi and Trat provinces of eastern Thailand to prepare for heavy rains over next few days and to expect flash floods and mudslides from July 17-19, 2013 in the mentioned regions.

Uttarakhand floods – Update. A total of 5,748 people still missing after last month’s floods in northern India have officially been presumed dead, authorities said today.

Disease

Novel Coronavirus – Saudi Arabia – Update

The Ministry of Health (MoH) in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has notified WHO of another laboratory-confirmed case of infection with Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) in the country.

Poliovirus Detected in Israel – Update

Wild poliovirus type 1 (WPV1) has been isolated in 30 sewage samples from 10 sampling sites in Israel. The samples were collected from 3 February 2013 to 30 June 2013. Most positive WPV1 samples were detected from southern Israel. All viruses have been detected in sewage only; no cases of paralytic polio have been reported.

Dutch elm tree disease outbreak in Auckland, New Zealand

More than 200 elm trees, the oldest of which were planted in Kingseat, near Drury, in the 1930s, have been wiped out by the disease in what is the largest outbreak since its discovery in New Zealand in 1989.

Environment

Heatwave in Japan

A severe heatwave that hit Japan a week ago has claimed at least a dozen lives.

On Friday, the day’s highest temperature was 38.3 degrees celsius (101 F) in Kawanehon town in Shizuoka prefecture. More than 40 other spots recorded highs of 35 degrees or more, Japan’s meteorological agency said.

Thousands of people have been taken to hospital suffering from heatstroke or exhaustion, with at least 12 of them dying.

Most of those affected are over 65, but there have also been groups of schoolchildren who were participating in school activities outside.