Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

Hurricane Gonzalo is located about 270 mi…435 km NNE of Bermuda and about 900 mi…1450 km SSW of Cape Race Newfoundland with maximum sustained winds…100 mph…160 km/h. Present movement…NNE or 30 degrees at 22 mph…35 km/h.

Hurricane Gonzalo uprooted trees, flattened power lines and smashed into Bermuda’s main hospital late on Friday—the second storm to pummel the tiny British territory in less than a week. The hurricane’s centre crossed over the island during the night and its winds and heavy surf were still whipping at the island early on Saturday as Gonzalo moved northward over the Atlantic. Forecasters warned of a 10-feet (3 meter) storm surge that could cause widespread flooding. A full assessment of damage is unlikely until daylight. A hurricane warning was downgraded to a tropical storm warning.

Hazards affecting land – Surf…large swells generated by gonzalo are still affecting portions of the Virgin Islands…the northern coasts of Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic…portions of the Bahamas…portions of the United States East Coast…and Bermuda. Swells will spread northward into portions of Atlantic Canada today through Sunday.

Hurricane Ana is located about 170 mi…275 km SW of Kailua-Kona Hawaii and about 225 mi…360 km S of Honolulu Hawaii with maximum sustained winds…80 mph…130 km/h. Present movement…NW or 310 degrees at 13 mph…20 km/h.

Hazards affecting land – wind…tropical storm conditions are possible over the main Hawaiian islands from Maui to Niihau today and Sunday.

Tropical Storm Trudy is located about 75 mi…115 km ESE of Acapulco Mexico with maximum sustained winds…60 mph…95 km/h. Present movement…E or 80 degrees at 2 mph…4 km/h.

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Global Warming

Peru’s Glacial Melt-Off Reaches 40 Percent

Glaciers near the southern South American country of Peru have shrunk by 40 percent in the past four decades, which has created a number of high-altitude lakes.

Climate change is the cause for the melt-off, which has spawned nearly 1,000 new high-altitude lakes since 1980, the Peruvian government said Wednesday.

The glaciers in Peru are small compared to those found in the north and south poles, and are at a greater risk of disappearing. In addition, 70 percent of the world’s tropical glaciers are found in Peru, and they are extremely sensitive to the warming temperatures associated with climate change.

In the coming years, 90 percent of the 2,679 glaciers could disappear, the country’s water authority said, updating its report of glacier inventory that was last issued in the 1970s.

Those at greater risk of melting away are smaller than 1-square-kilometre, and spread over 19 snow-capped mountain ranges of the Andes.

Officials said 996 lakes have emerged in the Andes since the last count in 1980, which increases the total to 8,355.

They are the majority source of the country’s drinking water.


Typhoons May Have Caused Fukushima Radiation Surge

Heavy rainfall from passing typhoons this month may be behind a record spike in groundwater radioactivity found in test wells drilled next to Japan’s crippled Fukushima nuclear power plant.

Samples taken next to three reactors that suffered meltdowns following the March 2011 earthquake-tsunami disaster showed an almost fourfold increase in particles such as strontium-90 within a four-day period.

The volume of isotopes such as cobalt-60 and manganese-54 also reached a record high, according to Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO).

This coincided with heavy rainfall from remnants of Typhoon Vongfong, which drenched much of Japan during the same period.

More powerful Typhoon Phanfone had passed over the Fukushima disaster zone during the previous week.

TEPCO said the increase in groundwater from the storms could have mixed with radioactive elements left in the soil after the meltdowns.


Roundup of Global Volcanic Activity

Kilauea (Hawai’i): The June 27th lava flow advancement has slowed, with the leading edge of the flow moving only a few tens of meters (yards) over the past two days. Nevertheless, active breakouts persist around the flow front, as shown in this photo by the continued burning of vegetation along the flow margins. On 15 Oct morning, the flow front was 1.1 km (0.7 miles) from Apaʻa St., as measured along a straight line. (HVO / USGS)

Fuego (Guatemala): Mild to moderate strombolian activity continues with no major changes over the past weeks. Much of the time, cloud cover prevents visual observations, but the observatory reports the usual occasional weak to moderate explosion sounds.