Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.1 Earthquake hits the Pacific-Antarctic ridge.

5.0 Earthquake hits south of Fiji.

5.0 Earthquake hits eastern New Guinea, Papua New Guinea.

5.0 Earthquake hits the Anatahan region in the North Mariana Islands.

5.0 Earthquake hits the Hindu Kush, Afghanistan.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

No current tropical storms.

NewsBytes:

Oman – Two people died after their vehicle was swept away by flood waters in Wadi Kabeel in Qurayat province, Oman on Friday. Three other Omanis were rescued in Wadi Bani Karoos in the Dhank province.

Global Warming

Cloud Study Suggests Global Warming May Be Worse Than Previously Believed

Climate models may have significantly miscalculated the effect of clouds in global warming, a new report revealed. This means future global temperatures could actually be worse than previously believed.

Researchers at Yale University examined a number of global climate projections, as well as satellite data. Studying the make-up of mixed-phase clouds, they found that clouds today actually hold more liquid, instead of ice.

Mixed-phase clouds typically consist of ice particles, liquid droplets, and water vapour. How is more liquid on clouds bad?

Clouds with more ice crystals are effective in reflecting sunlight than clouds with more liquid, acting as a shield to prevent too much light from the sun from reaching the Earth. Researchers said the more ice there is in clouds, the less warming there will be on the surface of the Earth.

Current climate models underestimate the role of clouds in global warming. Existing studies have over-estimated the prevalence of ice crystals in clouds, suggesting that global warming may be substantially worse than previously believed.

Disease

Lassa Fever – Sweden

On 1 April 2016, the National IHR Focal Point for Sweden notified WHO of an imported case of Lassa fever infection.

Cholera – Kenya – Update

Kenya’s health ministry confirmed on Friday that 216 people have died from an outbreak of cholera since December last year.

Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Health Nicholas Muraguri revealed the country registered a total of 13,299 cases across 28 counties, Xinhua reported. He said that multiple peaks have been observed as the outbreak spreads to new counties since it was first reported in Nairobi, showing propagated transmission.

A total of 259 new cases were reported in the last one week in various health facilities in parts of the country.

However, the official said that 16 counties so far have managed to successfully contain the outbreak of the disease. “Even though the disease continues being reported in some parts of the country, no death has been reported in the past one week.”

Volcanos

Roundup of Global Volcanic Activity

Sakurajima (Kyushu, Japan): The volcano continues to have relatively strong vulcanian-type explosions at varying rates between 0-3 or more per day, and again mostly from the Showa crater (on the upper eastern flank) An explosion this afternoon generated an ash column that rose to 15,000 ft (4.5 km) altitude.

Pavlof (Alaska Peninsula, USA): The most recent eruption (or eruptive phase) of the volcano that had begun on 27 March lasted only a few days; after no more activity had been observed for a week, AVO lowered the alert level back to Yellow on 6 April. The possibility remains that activity resumes with little warning: “Pauses in vigorous eruptive activity of days to weeks are common during eruptive episodes of Pavlof Volcano. A return to robust eruptive activity remains possible and could occur with little or no warning.” (AVO)

Telica (Nicaragua): The activity of the volcano remains elevated, with little changes over the past days. Bright incandescence inside the crater and mild to moderate degassing, sometimes with light ash content, are visible at the surface. Internal micro-seismic activity continues to be at high levels according to INETER’s latest report. The risk of sudden explosions from the crater remains considerable and people are advised not to approach the crater.