Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

Central Chile was rocked Wednesday evening by an 8.3 magnitude quake that killed at least fifteen people, injured dozens of others and caused widespread damage from its shaking and subsequent tsunamis.

Large waves surged into coastal towns minutes after the initial temblor struck 140 miles north of Santiago at 7:54 p.m. local time.

Strong aftershocks roiled the Pacific and caused further shaking onshore for hours following what was one of the world’s strongest earthquakes so far this year.

The largest tsunami was 16 feet in height and caused significant damage when it swamped the downtown area of Coquimbo.

While a Pacific-wide tsunami alert was issued following the first quake, there were only minor fluctuations in sea level reported as far away as New Zealand.

In 2010, an 8.8-magnitude earthquake in central-southern Chile triggered a massive tsunami and left more than 500 people dead from the ocean surge and shaking onshore.

Tahiti tsunami warning map

6.3 Earthquake hits offshore Valparaiso, Chile.

5.7 Earthquake hits offshore Valparaiso, Chile.

5.3 Earthquake hits offshore Valparaiso, Chile.

5.1 Earthquake hits offshore Valparaiso, Chile.

5.6 Earthquake hits offshore Coquimbo, Chile.

5.6 Earthquake hits offshore Coquimbo, Chile.

5.4 Earthquake hits offshore Coquimbo, Chile.

5.4 Earthquake hits offshore Coquimbo, Chile.

5.3 Earthquake hits offshore Coquimbo, Chile.

5.2 Earthquake hits offshore Coquimbo, Chile.

5.6 Earthquake hits offshore Coquimbo, Chile.

5.2 Earthquake hits offshore Coquimbo, Chile.

5.0 Earthquake hits offshore Coquimbo, Chile.

5.0 Earthquake hits offshore Coquimbo, Chile.

5.0 Earthquake hits offshore Coquimbo, Chile.

7.0 Earthquake hits Coquimbo, Chile.

5.0 Earthquake hits Coquimbo, Chile.

5.0 Earthquake hits Hokkaido, Japan.

5.0 Earthquake hits New Britain, Papua New Guinea.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

Typhoon Krovanh is located approximately 55 nm east of Iwo To, and is tracking northward at 12 knots.

Tropical Depression Nine is located about 1045 mi…1680 km E of the Lesser Antilles with maximum sustained winds…30 mph…45 km/h. Present movement…NNW or 330 degrees at 7 mph…11 km/h.

Invest 95L is an area of disturbed weather in the North Atlantic that has the potential for tropical development.

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

NewsBytes:

Sierra Leone – At least nine people were killed and thousands made homeless in severe floods Thursday as Freetown, Sierra Leone was buffeted by torrential rains.

Utah, USA – Update – The death toll in the floods that hit Utah this week has risen to 18.

Global Warming

Global Warming Disrupting Arctic Life for the Caribou

Earth’s climate has changed constantly during the 4 billion years that life has lived on this planet. But usually, it changes slowly. When the climate has changed quickly, species that failed to adapt died off, often in shocking numbers. The quickly warming Arctic is now forcing caribou to adapt.

The caribou breeding cycle is timed to the sun, not to temperature. It is timed so that baby caribou will be born during late May or early June, every year, without exception. Plants are different. They time their growth cycle to the temperature. They can be awakened early.

Before the Arctic started warming, these two cycles were in sync. A pregnant caribou could count on there being plenty of nutrient-rich vegetation around in May, when she needed it most, to feed the single baby calf growing within her.

Climate change is decoupling these cycles. Plants are erupting out of the ground earlier in the year. By the time pregnant caribou arrive at their birthing grounds, the vegetation has already peaked. Mothers are becoming malnourished. Fewer calves are being born, and fewer are surviving their crucial first few months. And even when they do survive, they are still vulnerable, to overhunting, and to diseases carried north by deer that would never have survived the Arctic chill of yesteryear.

Caribou populations are reeling. And now they face a new menace – Mosquitoes.

The Arctic mosquito, a larger, furrier version of the ubiquitous pests, are getting a longer breeding season as Arctic ponds warmed earlier in the year, researchers from Dartmouth have found.

The large flying insects are a nuisance to humans but potentially harmful to wildlife, especially caribou. While they’re not known to spread disease, the persistent insects can drive the caribou to remote snowbanks or hilltops to seek shelter. They will go to the top of windy hill. When they do that, they are often moving to areas with no food or no quality food.

The earlier the insects hatch, the bigger a problem they become for the caribou since they overlap with the birth of caribou calves, researchers said, noting that if the calves are forced to retreat to snowier or more desolate areas, they could die without adequate nutrition. In the Arctic, temperatures have increased at twice the global rate in the past 100 years, according to the study.

Increased mosquito abundance, in addition to northward range expansions of additional pest species, will have negative consequences for the health and reproduction of the caribou.

Ht mosquitos 1 kab 150917 12x5 1600

Environment

Global Temperature Extremes

The week’s hottest temperature was 118.0 degrees Fahrenheit (47.8 degrees Celsius) at Death Valley, California, USA.

The week’s coldest temperature was minus 103.2 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 75.1 degrees Celsius) at the U.S. Amundsen–Scott South Pole Station.

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.

Disease

Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) – Saudi Arabia

Between 6 and 11 September 2015, the National IHR Focal Point for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia notified WHO of 22 additional cases of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infection. Three (3) of these reported cases are associated with a MERS-CoV outbreak currently occurring in a hospital in Riyadh city. Five (5) of these reported cases are associated with another MERS-CoV outbreak occurring in a hospital in Madinah city.

Chikungunya – Spain (update)

On 3 August 2015, WHO was notified by the National IHR Focal Point for Spain of a case of chikungunya infection in the city of Gandia, Valencian Community. The patient, a 60-year-old man, had no history of travel outside the European Region.

Cholera in Nigerian Camp

The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) has confirmed the outbreak of cholera in one of the internally displaced persons camp in Borno state.

The disease outbreak started in a camp in Sanda Kyarimi in Borno state. Nine people have been killed from the disease outbreak. A total of 96 others – already treated and mostly discharged – were affected.

Volcanos

Roundup of Global Volcanic Activity

Mauna Loa (Big Island, Hawai’i): The alert level of the world’s largest volcano was raised a notch to “ADVISORY”, and the Aviation Color code to “YELLOW” becuase shallow earthquakes have recently appeared in increasing numbers under the volcano. There is no sign that the volcano is about to erupt in a very near future, but it could be a medium- or long-term precursor of a next eruption. The last eruption of Manua Loa occurred in 1984.