Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.4 Earthquake hits the Bismarck Sea.

5.3 Earthquake hits the Bismarck Sea.

5.2 Earthquake hits the Bismarck Sea.

5.2 Earthquake hits the Kermedec Islands.

5.0 Earthquake hits the Dodecanese Islands-Turkish border region.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

Gl sst mm

In the Atlantic Ocean: Tropical Storm Franklin is located about 55 mi…90 km NNW of Chetumal Mexico and about 135 mi…220 km ESE of Campeche Mexico with maximum sustained winds…50 mph…85 km/h. Present movement…WNW or 290 degrees at 14 mph…22 km/h.

In the Western Pacific: Tropical depression 07w (Noru), located approximately 150 nm north-northwest of Yokota Ab, Japan, is tracking northeastward at 08 knots.


Vietnam, Update – Floods and landslides in northern Vietnam have now killed at least 26 people and washed away hundreds of homes over the past week. Fifteen people are missing. The scale of the destruction means rescue efforts are proving difficult. Flooding has crippled four provinces, damaging water systems and farms, where rice and fruit are grown.

Europe – After the heatwave in parts of Europe came the storms, and casualties. Four people were reported dead in northern Italy over the weekend as the weather turned violent. First a mudslide near the ski resort of Cortina d’Ampezzo swept a woman to her death on Saturday. On Sunday three men were killed, two of them when strong winds brought down trees, the other by lightning. Clean-up operations have been underway in Austria after heavy rain. The Grossarital Valley in the state of Salzburg was once again reported to be accessible after being cut off. Styria and Tyrol were also badly affected. Far to the east – in Russia’s far east – heavy rain brought chaos. A local state of emergency was declared as the town of Ussuriysk and six villages became flooded. Some people were given temporary accommodation after being moved from their homes. But despite some stormy weather, across much of southern, central and eastern Europe the heatwave is expected to continue.

San Antonio, Texas, USA – San Antonio saw heavy rainfall and severe thunderstorms throughout the city on Monday morning. The San Antonio Fire Department reported at least five structural fires caused by lightning strikes on Monday. Officials have reported low level flooding in various areas throughout the city.


Sea Fleas Dine on Aussie Teen’s Legs

Tiny marine creatures — each measuring a fraction of an inch in length — gnawed a teenager’s legs bloody during a seaside dip in Melbourne, Australia, and experts identified a type of scavenging crustacean as the culprit.

On Saturday (Aug. 5), a 16-year-old teen emerged from the water at Melbourne’s Brighton Beach to find blood pouring down his shins and ankles from what appeared to be hundreds of needle-like punctures.

The boy’s father later returned to the beach to capture some of the tiny animals that had bitten his son for identification purposes. Genefor Walker-Smith, a marine biologist with the Museums Victoria in Melbourne, examined the creatures and identified the mystery chewers as amphipods — a type of minuscule shrimp-like crustacean — in the Lysianssidae family.

Amphipods in this group are mostly scavengers, playing an important part in marine food webs by eating dead and decaying plants and animals. However, some amphipods are active predators, and though tiny, they would certainly be capable of piercing human flesh with their mandibles. In this case they may have mistaken the boy’s legs as fish and had a meal.

Screen Shot 2017 08 08 at 1 13 31 PM

Global Warming

Government Report Finds Drastic Impact of Climate Change on U.S.

The average temperature in the United States has risen rapidly and drastically since 1980, and recent decades have been the warmest of the past 1,500 years, according to a sweeping federal climate change report awaiting approval by the Trump administration.

The draft report by scientists from 13 federal agencies, which has not yet been made public, concludes that Americans are feeling the effects of climate change right now. It directly contradicts claims by President Trump and members of his cabinet who say that the human contribution to climate change is uncertain, and that the ability to predict the effects is limited.

“Evidence for a changing climate abounds, from the top of the atmosphere to the depths of the oceans,” a draft of the report states. A copy of it was obtained by The New York Times.

The authors note that thousands of studies, conducted by tens of thousands of scientists, have documented climate changes on land and in the air. “Many lines of evidence demonstrate that human activities, especially emissions of greenhouse (heat-trapping) gases, are primarily responsible for recent observed climate change,” they wrote.


Botulism in Portugal

Portugal health officials have confirmed a small botulism outbreak in the northeastern region of the country. Four cases of food-borne botulism related to the consumption of homemade smoked ham in mid- July were confirmed in Bragança district.

Nigeria: Lassa fever

In the past three weeks, active transmission of Lassa fever has been reported in five states (Bauchi, Edo, Ogun, Ondo, and Plateau) of Nigeria. 13 new suspected cases were reported from four states during the last week of July, namely: Plateau (5), Ondo (5) Bauchi (2), and Ogun (1), including two deaths.

Cholera Outbreak in Somaliland

The people of Somaliland – a state which declared independence from the rest of Somalia – are suffering from malnutrition caused by three years of drought. The children in the region, already weakened by hunger and illness, are now at risk of contracting the deadly disease cholera. The deadly disease is one of the fastest spreading in Somaliland and is claiming the lives of many, from the old to the very young. In some areas 500 new cases are reported each day.