Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

6.7 Earthquake hits near the north coast of Papua, Indonesia.

Hundreds of people fled their homes in panic in Sorong and at least 39 people were hurt, mostly with broken bones. Nearly 260 houses and buildings were damaged. Hundreds of people were evacuated to temporary shelters as authorities surveyed the damage.

6.0 Earthquake hits the Solomon Islands.

5.5 Earthquake hits Vancouver Island, Canada.

5.3 Earthquake hits Tarapaca, Chile.

5.2 Earthquake hits southeast of Easter Island.

5.1 Earthquake hits Coquimbo, Chile.

Two 5.1 Earthquakes hit south of the Kermedec islands.

5.1 Earthquake hits the Kuril Islands.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

Tropical Depression Ida is located about 1180 mi…1900 km ENE of the northern Leeward Islands with maximum sustained winds…35 mph…55 km/h. Present movement…NNW or 335 degrees at 3 mph…6 km/h.

Typhoon Dujuan is located approximately 485 nm south-southeast of Kadena AB, Japan and is tracking west-northwestward at 04 knots.

Tropical Depression Six-C is located about 490 mi…790 km se of Hilo Hawaii and about 700 mi…1125 km se of Honolulu Hawaii with maximum sustained winds…35 mph…55 km/h. Present movement…NW or 315 degrees at 7 mph…11 km/h

Invest 92E is an area of disturbed weather in the East Pacific that has the potential for tropical development.

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Global Warming

Melting Arctic Ice Causing More Methane Emissions

The melting of the Arctic ice cap is encouraging more natural emissions of methane — one of the most potent greenhouse gases driving climate change.

Researchers at Sweden’s Lund University worked with Dutch and American colleagues to find that the recent accelerated melt of sea ice around the North Pole is allowing the Arctic’s surface waters to absorb more heat and promote the growth of microorganisms in the adjacent tundra.

Those microbes in turn give off natural methane emissions that promote even further climate change and sea ice loss.

This feedback loop of warming and melting appears to have increased with virtually every new cycle over the past decade.

“While numerous studies have shown the effects of sea ice loss on the ocean, there are only a few that show how this oceanic change affects ecosystems on the surrounding land,” said study author Frans-Jan Parmentier.

The findings were published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters.

Microbes in recently thawed Arctic tundra are emitting the powerful greenhouse gas methane because of the greater summertime melt of the polar ice cap.

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Wildlife

Giraffes Found to Hum at Night

It seems that giraffes are not as voiceless as previously thought, and have been observed humming in the night as a possible form of communication when their vision is limited.

Many wildlife experts have thought the animals’ necks are too long for them to be able to vocalize.

But analysis of sound recordings of giraffe habitats at three European zoos revealed the stately animals occasionally emit a low-frequency sound at about 92 hertz — barely within the range of human hearing.

“I was fascinated because these signals have a very interesting sound and have a complex acoustic structure,” said University of Vienna researcher Angela Stöger, who identified the giraffes as the sources of the hums.

But since she wasn’t able to see the animals at the time of the sounds, she doesn’t know if they were even awake, or what might have been the motivation for the sounds.

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Environment

Global Temperature Extremes

The week’s hottest temperature was 117.3 degrees Fahrenheit (47.4 degrees Celsius) at Mecca, Saudi Arabia.

The week’s coldest temperature was minus 102.6 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 47.8 degrees Celsius) at Russia’s Vostok Antarctic research 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.

Volcanos

Roundup of Global Volcanic Activity

Telica (Nicaragua): New explosions with ash emissions occurred at the volcano during the past days, following a period of calm that had lasted several months since the series of similar eruptions earlier this year in May.

The first explosions started on Tuesday 23 Aug from around 08:00 local time and produced ash plumes that rose to approx. 500 m height. Ash fell in up to 30 km distance west of the volcano in the department of Chinandega. Another similar phase of activity occurred yesterday starting at 13:43.

Volcanologists from INETER assume that the activity is phreatic, ie. not caused by fresh magma near the surface.