Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

6.9 Earthquake hits Vanuatu.

5.3 Earthquake hits the central east Pacific rise.

5.0 Earthquake hits the South Sandwich Islands.

5.0 Earthquake hits the Babuyan Islands in the Philippines.

Wildlife

Air Drop of Poison Kills Endangered Birds

New Zealand conservation groups slammed the government’s use of a pesticide, which the campaigners say may have virtually wiped out a group of endangered birds.

The Department of Conservation dropped more than 900 tons of toxic sodium fluoroacetate late last year across parts of the South Island, including Kahurangi National Park.

The pesticide, known commercially as 1080, was intended to wipe out invasive pests such as possums, stoats and rats that threaten native species.

Anti-1080 campaigners say the drop “exterminated” part of a rare population of rock wrens, which are the country’s only true alpine birds.

The Department of Conservation claims heavy snowfall could be behind the disappearance of the birds.

Environmentalists called that claim “ludicrous,” pointing out the alpine birds frequently encounter such snowfall.

“The use of 1080 is inhumane and is an indiscriminate poison banned in most of the world,” said NZ First’s outdoor recreation spokesman Richard Prosser.

New Zealand is the world’s leading user of the poison.

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Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

Tropical cyclone (tc) 07p (Niko), located approximately 390 nm southeast of Papeete, Tahiti, is tracking south-southeastward at 08 knots.

NewsBytes:

Australia – Dozens of roads were closed around Brisbane and south-east Queensland from flooding due to heavy rain, which has also caused rock slides. Heavy weather warning have been issued for the Sunshine Coast and the Gold Coast hinterland.

Philippines – About 10,000 people have been affected by flash floods in North Cotabato’s low lying villages Thursday.

Marshall Islands – A king tide Wednesday caused widespread flooding here and on at least four remote outer islands and Marshall Islanders were warned there could be more flooding over the next several days.

Environment

Global Temperature Extremes

The week’s hottest temperature was 117.5 degrees Fahrenheit (47.5 degrees Celsius) at Paynes Find, Western Australia.

The week’s coldest temperature was minus 53.5 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 47.5 degrees Celsius) at Russia’s Far East Siberian city of Seymchan.

Temperatures were tabulated from the more than 10,000 worldwide synoptic weather stations. The United Nations World Meteorological Organization sets the standards for weather observations, and provides a global telecommunications circuit for data distribution.

Volcanos

Roundup of Global Volcanic Activity

Fogo (Cape Verde): Mild explosive activity continues from the vent, at least intermittently, but there is no longer significant lava effusion. According to local observers, the eruption continues to decline overall and might be ending in a near future. Works have started to reopen the road into the caldera to reach Ilheu de Losna and Portela/Bangaeira.

Karymsky (Kamchatka): Another small ash plume was detected by Tokyo VAAC this morning. The volcano’s activity has been characterized by intermittent strombolian to small vulcanian explosions for years. Clear weather over the past days allowed the detection of more emissions than normally (when most events unless very large go unnoticed due to cloud cover).

Kilauea (Hawai’i): The June 27th lava flow remains active, but its advance has been mainly in form small and slow breakouts along its margins, widening it. The most advanced flow front is still 600 m upslope from Highway 130 near the Pāhoa police and fire stations.