Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.9 Earthquake hits the Volcano Islands off Japan.

5.7 Earthquake hits Jujuy, Argentina.

5.0 Earthquake hits southwest of Sumatra, Indonesia.

Earthquake Cluster hits California, USA

A cluster of moderate earthquakes rocked Northern California on Wednesday night and early Thursday morning. About 9:55 p.m. Wednesday, a magnitude 4.5 earthquake was reported about 20 miles east of Janesville, near the Nevada border. Within minutes, two more magnitude 4.4 quakes were reported around the same area in Lassen County. The epicenters were about 45 miles north of Reno and 10 miles south of Honey Lake. Early Thursday morning, a magnitude 3.4 earthquake was reported 19 miles from Janesville.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

Gl sst mm

In the North Atlantic: Tropical Storm Earl is located about 175 mi…285 km ESE of Veracruz Mexico and about 65 mi…105 km ENE of Coatzacoalcos Mexico with maximum sustained winds…40 mph…65 km/h. Present movement…WNW or 285 degrees at 12 mph…19 km/h.

In the Eastern Pacific: Tropical Storm Ivette is located about 1405 mi…2260 km WSW of the southern tip of Baja California with maximum sustained winds…50 mph…85 km/h. Present movement…W or 275 degrees at 14 mph…22 km/h.

In the Western Pacific: Tropical storm 07w (Omais), located approximately 372 nm southeast of Iwo To, is tracking north-northeastward at 10 knots.

Newsbytes:

Thermal Floods – This year’s record heat has been accompanied in recent weeks by abnormally severe flooding across Asia and parts of the United States.The worst monsoon flooding in decades has killed hundreds of people and forced millions of others from their homes in China, India, Nepal and Pakistan.Freak floods in Maryland destroyed much of a downtown area after several inches of rain fell within two hours.Since warmer air can hold more moisture than cooler air, global warming has been accompanied by more intense rounds of flooding.

Sudan – Floods and heavy rain in Sudan have killed 76 people and destroyed thousands of homes in recent days. 13 of Sudan’s 18 provinces had been affected by flooding. The Nile is at its highest levels in more than a century, swollen by heavy rain in many parts of the East African country. Interior ministry statistics showed downpours and flooding had completely destroyed 3,206 houses, and damaged 3,048 others in the eastern province of Kassala, one of the worst hit areas.

Environment

Earth’s resources depleted for 2016

As of Monday, Aug. 8, humanity will have already used up more resources than the Earth can regenerate this year, according to the Global Footprint Network.

The network, a WWF partner, declared Aug. 8, 2016 as this year’s Earth Overshoot Day, which is five days earlier than last year and the earliest Overshoot day yet.

As the global population grows and consumption rises, we are emitting more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere than our oceans and forests can absorb, and we are depleting fisheries and harvesting forests more quickly than they can reproduce and regrow. To sustain our global consumption at this level would take 1.6 Earths.

When the first Earth Overshoot Day was calculated in 1987, it fell on Dec. 19. In 2000, the Earth’s renewable resources for the year were used up by late September. An ecological overshoot is possible only for a limited time before ecosystems begin to degrade and risk collapse.

Global Warming

Greenland’s Ice Melting from Below

The massive Greenland ice sheet is being melted as a result of heat emitted from within the Earth, rather than rising atmospheric temperatures, a new NASA study has claimed.

The US space agency, which uses satellites orbiting the earth to monitor the environment and study climate change, looked at how much the the huge ice sheet was still attached to bed rock underneath.

For the first time, the agency obtained a series of temperatures from the base of the sheet – the second biggest in the world after that in the Antarctic – and found it was up to tens of degrees warmer at the base than the surface. The Greenland ice sheet is around 1,500 miles north to south and up to 680 miles across.

Scientists found alarmingly high areas of ice at the base of the sheet had melted and come free from the bedrock below. But they also said it was heat coming out of the bedrock itself which was causing the melting. This means the ice sheet would melt from below anyway even if global warming was not taking place.

Knowing whether Greenland’s ice lies on wet, slippery ground or is anchored to dry, frozen bedrock is essential for predicting how this ice will flow in the future, but scientists have very few direct observations of the thermal conditions beneath the ice sheet, obtained through fewer than two dozen boreholes that have reached the bottom.

The map shows parts of the ice sheet that are likely thawed (red), frozen (blue) or uncertain (grey)

NASA Map 613499

Wildlife

Moth Invasion

Unprecedented swarms of moths in two eastern Canadian towns left residents working for days to remove the pests from inside their homes as well as from their screens and windows.

No one in either Campbellton or Dalhousie, New Brunswick, had ever seen such an infestation of the spruce budworm moths.

A vacuum truck was used to suck up the stinking carcasses, which had laid untold numbers of eggs in trees and bushes before dying.

Experts were at a loss to explain the infestations.

Environment

Global Temperature Extremes

The week’s hottest temperature was 121.0 degrees Fahrenheit (49.4 degrees Celsius) in Death Valley, California.

The week’s coldest temperature was minus -98.0 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 72.2 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.

Disease

Zika-related microcephaly in California USA

Two infants with Zika-related microcephaly have been born in California to women who had Zika virus infections during pregnancy after spending time in a country where the virus is endemic, The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) reported Thursday.

Ireland: Syphilis

There has been a significant increase in cases of early infectious syphilis in the Cork area in the past year, with almost 8 in 10 reported cases among men who have sex with men (MSM). Compared to January to June 2015, when seven cases were reported in Cork & Kerry, cases have trebled, with 23 cases of early infectious syphilis reported from July to December 2015 and 21 cases from January to June 2016.

Myanmar – Unknown Disease

An undiagnosed disease has killed more than 30 children in a remote area of Sagaing Region, local officials said yesterday. Health authorities are struggling to treat the victims.

The illness, with measles-like symptoms, has hit the far corner of northern Sagaing, a mountainous area which borders eastern India and is populated by people from the Naga tribes.

Volcanos

Roundup of Global Volcanic Activity

Etna (Sicily, Italy): Since Wednesday (3 Aug) evening, the New SE crater has been producing intermittent small ash emissions. This activity has become more intense yesterday and seems to have decreased again today. Weaker and rarer emissions had also occurred during 21-27 July and then again ceased. Thermal imagery shows that the ash is of low temperature only, which probably means that the origin are internal collapses rather than explosions of fresh magma inside the conduit. Volcanic tremor is currently low.

Bagana (Bougainville Island, Papua New Guinea): Minor ash emissions were reported this morning by Darwin VAAC. A gas plume with possibly light ash content is visible on this morning’s satellite image extending WSW from the volcano.

Gamalama (Halmahera): Small ash emissions from the volcano have continued yesterday and in the night. Due to the hazard of new ash falls, the airport remains closed today and is scheduled to reopen tomorrow morning at 11:00 am local time. The Indonesian authorities keep the status level of the volcano at 2 (on a scale of 1-4, 4 being highest). No evacuations were ordered, but an exclusion zone of 1.5 km radius around the crater is in place. Ash falls were reported in several villages including Salero, Soa Sio, Sangaji, Dufa-Dufa, and in some parts of Central Ternate. Based on information from the local volcano observatory, the ash from yesterday’s activity reached 1,700 to 2,500 meters above sea level. Seismic data show no significant earthquake activity associated with the activity, but a weak constant tremor signal.

Sinabung (Sumatra, Indonesia): Explosions continue to occur at the volcano almost daily. One this morning at 06:53 local time was relatively strong, producing a vertical ash column that rose 3000 m above the volcano’s summit where a lava dome continues to grow slowly. Another, but smaller explosion was reported yesterday morning at 10:20.

Kilauea (Hawai’i): No significant changes have occurred over the past week. As of yesterday, lava from the 61G flow was still flowing into the sea at the Kamokuna ocean entry, but the rate of lava reaching it has been relatively low recently. A small delta of new coastal land (extremely dangerous to approach as it is prone to sudden collapse) has by now formed there. The lava lake at Halemaʻumaʻu Crater remains active, but has dropped recently and was 41 m (135 ft) below the Overlook crater rim as of yesterday. HVO reports background levels of seismicity and deformation.

Pavlof (Alaska Peninsula, USA): AVO lowered the alert level of the volcano back to advisory and the Aviation Color Code to yellow and declared that “the eruptive activity that was observed intermittently since July 28 has ended or paused. Over the past several days there has been no evidence for continued ash emissions or signs of near surface magma in satellite data.”

Santiaguito (Guatemala): After several weeks of relative calm, another strong explosion occurred from the Caliente lava dome yesterday at 10:45 local time, the 75th vulcanian explosion in 2016. Due to the currently bad weather (passing tropical storm Earl), there were no direct observations, but it could be inferred from ash falls observed in San Marcos, Loma Linda Palajunoj and Quetzaltenango city. The ash plume was estimated to have reached 5,000 meters asl. Due to the heavy rainfalls, the risk of lahars (violent mud flows) through river beds draining from the volcano is elevated.