Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global
6.4 Earthquake hits the Kuril Islands.
Two 5.6 Earthquakes hit east of North Island, New Zealand.
5.4 Earthquake hits New Britain, Papua New Guinea.
5.2 Earthquake hits Metropolitana, Chile.
5.2 Earthquake hits the central east Pacific rise.
5.1 Earthquake hits Tonga.
5.0 Earthquake hits Lake Baykal, Russia.
Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:
Tropical storm 09w (Chan-Hom), located approximately 506 nm southwest of Iwo To, is tracking westward at 10 knots.
Tropical storm 10w (Linfa), located approximately 277 nm east-southeast of Hong Kong, is tracking northward at 03 knots.
Tropical storm 11w (Nangka), located approximately 496 nm east of Andersen AFB, Guam, is tracking west-northwestward at 14 knots.
Invest 91C and 96E remain areas of disturbed weather in the East Pacific which have the potential for tropical development.
Drought – Chile
The world’s driest desert is expanding south towards Chile’s capital. Santiago, a city of 7 million people 1,000 kilometres (622 miles) from the Atacama desert, is experiencing its driest year since 1966. Similar to California’s situation with the Sierra Nevadas, little to no snow has fallen in the Andes mountains that supply most of Santiago’s water.
“Climatic zones are shifting south,” University of Chile geography professor Francisco Ferrando said. “Santiago is likely to move to a condition of a desert or semi-desert. What is happening is probably associated with global warming and there’s no sign of it slowing.”
Santiago need only look 300 kilometres north to see how bad things can get as its drought continues for an eighth year amid record high global temperatures. Farmers in the once-fertile valleys of the Choapa and Limari rivers that lived for generations on agriculture are ripping up orchards, losing livestock and in some cases abandoning homes as wells dry and waterways slow to a trickle.
Near the origin of the Limari river, Paloma reservoir — Latin America’s largest for irrigation — is all but empty. Sluice gates are shut, the little water that remains doesn’t reach the dam and most of the basin is dry, cracked earth. The image is repeated 30 kilometres away where Cogoti reservoir is empty. Closer to Santiago, the Culimo dam is dry.
Around the river valleys, fields are filled with the stumps of once-productive avocado trees and almond groves. Grapevines are a thatch of dried stems.
Wildfires – British Columbia, Canada
Wildfires in British Columbia, which sent smoke pouring into Washington state, continue to grow, said the BC Wildfire Service.
The fires, located about 20 miles north of Whistler, were started by lightning.
The Boulder Wildfire Complex – which includes the Elaho Wildfire, the Boulder Creek wildfire, and the Nahatlatch wildfire – is burning about 40 miles west of Pemberton. The Boulder Creek fire covers about 12,000 acres. The Elaho wildfire covers about 49,000 acres.
Heat Wave in Europe
A heat wave has soared across Europe. The heat wave set a record in Germany as 104.54 Fahrenheit was measured in Kitzingen, northern Bavaria, on Sunday afternoon. It is the highest level in Germany since measurements began in 1881.
The heatwave caused the deaths of five elderly people, two cyclists and three beachgoers, in the Emilia-Romagna region of Italy.
Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) – Update
Between 4 and 7 July 2015, the National IHR Focal Point of the Republic of Korea notified WHO of 2 additional confirmed case of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV). To date, a total of 186 MERS-CoV cases, including 33 deaths, have been reported.
Roundup of Global Volcanic Activity
Piton de la Fournaise (La Réunion): A new eruption could be underway at the volcano, the Volcano Observatory reported. Today, it recorded a seismic swarm of shallow earthquakes located under the summit of Dolomieu crater that started at noon. The prefecture declared alert phase 1 “probable eruption” and closed public access to the Enclos.
Hakone (Honshu): Following a small explosion in the Owakudani hydrothermal area and increased seismic activity, the alert level of the volcano was raised to 3 (on a scale of 1-5) on 30 June.
Raung (East Java): The effusive-explosive activity at the volcano continued and increased over the past week. Strombolian explosions accompany a lava flow emitted from a vent inside the large summit crater. Some of the explosions were strong enough to produce significant but low-level ash plumes drifting east. Some airlines canceled flights to Surabaya and Bali that would pass near or in the paths of the plumes. The alert level was raised to 3(“Siaga”) on a scale of 1-4 and some nearby villages have been evacuated.
Sinabung (Sumatra, Indonesia): Over the past days, pyroclastic flows have been weaker and less frequent, but the slow extrusion of lava at the summit continues with little change. The volcano remains at highest alert.
Dukono (Halmahera): Activity (explosions, ash emissions) remains elevated. An ash plume was observed extending 70 km NE from the volcano on 3 July (VAAC Darwin).
Pacaya (Guatemala): Mild strombolian activity producing small ash plumes continues at the Mackenney crater. Incandescence is visible from the crater at night,
Fuego (Guatemala): The eruptive activity intensified into another paroxysm during 1 July, producing a lava flow, more than 1 km long, and relatively large pyroclastic flows through the Las Lajas drainage on the southeast side that reached 4-5 km length. Areas in the La Réunion area near the Las Lajas river bed were evacuated.
Tungurahua (Ecuador): New ash explosions took place at the volcano the day before yesterday (3 July), generating a plume that rose approx. 1 km above the summit and caused light ash fall on the western slope. This was the first significant activity since the weak eruptive episode in April. IGEPN reported moderate internal activity and does not exclude that more vigorous eruptions might follow in the near future.