Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.7 Earthquake hits the Kermedec Islands.

5.6 Earthquake hits offshore Coquimbo, Chile.

5.2 Earthquake hits Coquimbo, Chile.

5.0 Earthquake hits the Komandorskiye Ostrova region, Russia.

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

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

Gl sst mm

Typhoon 17w (Atsani), located approximately 500 nm east-southeast of Yokosuka, Japan, is tracking northeastward at 11 knots.

Typhoon 16w (Goni), located approximately 82 nm north-northwest of Kadena AB, Okinawa, Japan, is tracking northeastward at 21 knots.

Tropical Depression Danny is located about 20 mi…30 km S of Guadeloupe with maximum sustained winds…35 mph…55 km/h. Present movement…W or 275 degrees at 12 mph…19 km/h.

Tropical Depression Kilo is located about 695 mi…1120 km SW of Lihue Hawaii and about 160 mi…255 km se of Johnston Island with maximum sustained winds…35 mph…55 km/h. Present movement…NW or 315 degrees at 7 mph…11 km/h.

Tropical Storm Loke is located about 270 mi…435 km S of Midway Island and about 275 mi…440 km WSW of Lisianski Island with maximum sustained winds…65 mph…105 km/h. Present movement…NE or 35 degrees at 15 mph…24 km/h.

Invest 97L is an area of disturbed weather in the North Atlantic that has the potential for tropical development.

Invest 98L is an area of disturbed weather in the North Atlantic that has the potential for tropical development.

Invest 95E is an area of disturbed weather in the East Pacific that has the potential for tropical development.


China – At least three people died and eight people remain missing in a landslide in Yunnan Province in China. Some 200 rescue workers using excavators and sniffer dogs have been searching for the eight people who are unaccounted for.

Turkey – A continuous downpour that began late on Saturday in Istanbul caused flash floods and disrupted traffic and daily life in some parts of the city up until Sunday afternoon.

Global Warming

Climate change and Earth’s Boreal Forests

Boreal forests cover the northernmost regions of Canada, Russia, Alaska, and Scandinavia, and make up about 30 percent of the planet’s total forest area. But now experts say that they are being threatened by warmer temperatures brought on by climate change.

The boreal forest, which is sometimes called by its Russian name “the taiga,” is a belt of coniferous trees that sprawl across North America and Eurasia. Lying atop formerly glaciated areas and places with patchy permafrost, these forests are subject to varying environmental conditions.

Although he boreal forests remain largely intact, they face the most severe expected temperature increases anywhere on Earth. Some parts of Siberia are likely to eventually become 11 C warmer. That will bring greater precipitation, but not enough to compensate for the dryness caused by hotter weather. A drier boreal will suffer new diseases, insect infestations and vast wildfires.

The forests can’t go so far to the north. The speed at which forests can move forward is very slow, about 100 metres a decade.

930181 1 boreal  standard


New map reveals how the world would appear without humans

Researchers have created the first estimate of how the world’s mammal diversity map would have appeared if modern man had never existed.

The world map constructed for the natural diversity of large mammals shows far greater distribution of high large-mammal diversity across most of the world, with particularly high levels in North and South America, areas that are currently relatively poor in large mammals.

The natural diversity of large mammals as it would appear without the impact of modern man (Homo sapiens). The figure shows the variation in the number of large mammals (45 kg or larger) that would have occurred per 100 x 100 kilometre grid cell. The numbers on the scale indicate the number of species.

World map without humans 02

The current diversity of large mammals. It can clearly be seen that large numbers of species virtually only occur in Africa, and that there are generally far fewer species throughout the world than there could have been.

World map without humans 03


Roundup of Global Volcanic Activity

Sakurajima (Kyushu, Japan): The likelihood of a feared larger eruption seems to be decreasing as the volcano has slowly been resuming small explosive activity and shots of the crater show the presence of fresh lava. This could mean that the conduit is not as strongly blocked as feared and could allow the volcano to return to a more regular eruption style, where pressure is released more gradually.

Sinabung (Sumatra, Indonesia): Small pyroclastic flows were observed during the past days, mostly originating from the active eastern lava lobe. Recent photos of the summit show no major changes during the past weeks, but suggest that lava effusion continues to slowly build up the dome and the two active lobes, which are now prone to potentially larger collapses and associated flows. A safety radius of 7 km from the volcano is recommended.

Fuego (Guatemala): The volcano’s activity remains low to moderate.

Reventador (Ecuador): The volcano’s activity remains at similar levels as during the past weeks. Lava continues to be extruded from the summit crater, producing frequent small to moderate explosions. No sustained lava flow is currently active.

Cotopaxi (Ecuador): Ash emissions have been increasing and producing plumes that rose 2 km above the summit and drifted west for over 50 km. Ash fall occurred in several populated areas including Mulalo, Chaupi, Lasso, Machachi, Aloag, Tambillo. Activity at the volcano remains more or less similar with moderately strong, near continuous ash emissions producing a plume rising approx. 2 km and drifting in a westerly direction.