Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

6.8 Earthquake hits the Scotia Sea in the far southern Atlantic Ocean.

5.5 Earthquake hits the Volcano islands off Japan.

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

5.4 Earthquake hits off the west coast of northern Sumatra, Indonesia.

5.3 Earthquake hits the Scotia Sea.

5.3 Earthquake hits the Ryukyu Islands off Japan.

5.3 Earthquake hits the Scotia Sea.

5.2 Earthquake hits the Scotia Sea.

5.1 Earthquake hits the Scotia Sea.

5.1 Earthquake hits northern Sumatra, Indonesia.

5.1 Earthquake hits the Scotia Sea.

5.1 Earthquake hits off the coast of southern Peru.

5.0 Earthquake hits Pakistan.

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

5.0 Earthquake hits eastern Honshu, Japan.

5.0 Earthquake hits Taiwan.

Environment

Japan Scales Back Greenhouse Gas Reduction Goals

Japan is slashing its greenhouse gas reduction goals in the wake of the Fukushima nuclear accident, which has caused the country to replace its nuclear power with coal, natural gas and other greenhouse-gas emitting forms of energy.

Instead of reducing greenhouse gases by 25 percent from their 1990 levels, Japan’s goals will aim for a 3 percent rise over those levels, which is a 3.8 percent reduction from 2005 levels. All of the country’s nuclear power plants are currently idle for scheduled maintenance checks, and the new estimates rely on no nuclear power in the future.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms

An area of low pressure is expected to form along a stalled cold front in the central Atlantic by late weekend into early next week. Some tropical or subtropical development is possible as it moves northward but the system will remain at sea and poses no threat to the U.S.

A broad area of low pressure in the eastern Pacific has been designated Invest 98E. Upper winds are only somewhat conducive for development before it moves inland over Mexico late Saturday into Sunday. Regardless of development, locally heavy rainfall is possible across northwestern Mexico this weekend.

NewsBytes:

Floods and landslides triggered by heavy rains have claimed the lives of at least five people and forced 69,000 from their homes in central Vietnam.

Volcanos

Roundup of Global Volcanic Activity:

Etna (Sicily, Italy): Weak explosions continue at the New SE crater, and often produce steam rings. This morning, tremor has started to rise, which could indicate the start of yet another paroxysm.

Klyuchevskoy (Kamchatka): Explosive activity at the summit crater has intensified. The volcano produces a near constant steam and ash plume of fluctuating size. The ash plume reaches about 21,000 ft (6.3 km) altitude drifting east.

Sakurajima (Kyushu, Japan): VAAC Tokyo reports continuous ash emissions and some relatively large explosions with plumes reaching 12,000 ft (3.6 km) altitude last evening.

Bagana (Bougainville Island, Papua New Guinea): An explosion this morning produced an ash plume to 9,000 ft (2.7 km) altitude this morning, VAAC Darwin reported.

Sinabung (Sumatra, Indonesia): Explosions continue to become gradually stronger. Two powerful vulcanian explosions occurred on 14 Nov producing ash plumes rising to about 12,000 ft (3.6 km) and causing small pyroclastic flows. More than 5000 people have been evacuated so far.

Colima (Western Mexico): Activity has increased recently, judging from recent pcitures of the volcano. Abundant rockfalls and lava flows descend the flank of the steep cone. It appears that growth of the lava dome has resumed in speed and overflows the rims of the crater.

Copahue (Chile/Argentina): New ash emissions started yesterday shortly before noon (local time) and have been more or less continuous since then. The low-level ash plume is drifting NW. SERNAGEOMIN mentions that seismic activity has remained above background, with a total of 18684 recorded earthquakes during October, most of them at depths less than 10 km.