Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.2 Earthquake hits the Ryukyu Islands off Japan.

5.1 Earthquake hits the Loyalty Islands.

Environment

Groundwater CO2

Using water from underground aquifers faster than it is being replenished is releasing large amounts of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.

While small compared to the burning of fossil fuels, this groundwater depletion in the U.S. alone could be responsible for 1.7 million metric tons of atmospheric CO2 pollution each year, scientists from Michigan State University estimate.

That would rank among the top 20 sources of carbon pollution outlined by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

“We were somewhat surprised that this hasn’t been accounted for … in the [EPA and IPCC] evaluations,” said study hydrogeologist David Hyndman.

Environment

Global Temperature Extremes

The week’s hottest temperature was 110 degrees Fahrenheit (43.3 degrees Celsius) in Telfer, Western Australia.

The week’s coldest temperature was minus 55.0 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 48.3 degrees Celsius) at Vostok, Antarctica.

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 – Ongoing Activity for the week of15 November – 21 November 2017

Aira | Kyushu (Japan) : JMA reported that an explosion at Minamidake summit crater (at Aira Caldera’s Sakurajima volcano) detected at 2207 on 13 November, ejected material as far as 1.3 km. The explosion vibrated structures in Kagoshima and Miyazaki prefectures. Poor weather conditions prevented views of a plume. An explosion at Showa Crater at 0955 on 14 November produced a plume that rose 1.3 km above the crater rim. Another explosion at Minamidake occurred at 2343 on 14 November, generating a plume that rose 1.3 km above the crater rim. Sulfur dioxide flux measured that same day was 1,400 tons per day, up from 400 tons per day on 10 November. Very small events at Minamidake were occasionally detected during 17-20 November. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a 5-level scale).

Bagana | Bougainville (Papua New Guinea) : Based on analyses of satellite imagery and model data, the Darwin VAAC reported that during 15-17 November ash plumes from Bagana rose to an altitude of 2.1 km (7,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted N, SW, SSW, and W.

Cleveland | Chuginadak Island (USA) : AVO reported that during 15-20 November elevated surface temperatures in Cleveland’s summit crater were sometimes identified in satellite data, consistent with lava at or near the surface; weather clouds sometimes prevented observations. No significant eruptive activity was detected by seismic or infrasound sensors. On 14 November a small explosion occurred from a vent in the middle of the dome. The Aviation colour Code remained at Orange and the Volcano Alert Level remained at Watch.

Dukono | Halmahera (Indonesia) : Based on analyses of satellite imagery, wind model data, and notices from PVMBG, the Darwin VAAC reported that during 15-21 November ash plumes from Dukono rose to altitudes of 2.1-2.3 km (7,000-8,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted in multiple directions.

Ebeko | Paramushir Island (Russia) : Based on observations by volcanologists in Severo-Kurilsk (Paramushir Island), about 7 km E of Ebeko, explosions on 16 November generated ash plumes that rose as high as 2 km (6,600 ft) a.s.l. The Aviation colour Code remained at Orange (the second highest level on a four-colour scale).

Kilauea | Hawaiian Islands (USA) : During 15-21 November HVO reported that the lava lake continued to rise, fall, and spatter in Kilauea’s Overlook crater. Webcams recorded incandescence from long-active sources within Pu’u ‘O’o Crater and from a small lava pond in a pit on the W side of the crater. Surface lava flows were active above and on the pali, and on the coastal plain. On 17 November a field crew visited the Kamokuna ocean entry and observed only very sluggish, pasty flows in a few random spots and minor to no degassing in the usual places.

Kirishimayama | Kyushu (Japan) : JMA reported that during 13-20 November activity at Shinmoedake (Shinmoe peak), a stratovolcano of the Kirishimayama volcano group, continued to be slightly elevated. White plumes rose 200 m above the crater rim. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a scale of 1-5).

Langila | New Britain (Papua New Guinea) : Based on analyses of satellite imagery and model data, the Darwin VAAC reported that during 15-16 November ash plumes from Langila rose to altitudes of 1.8-2.7 km (6,000-9,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted S and SW.

Sabancaya | Peru : Observatorio Vulcanológico del Sur del IGP (OVS-IGP) and Observatorio Vulcanológico del INGEMMET (OVI) reported that explosive activity at Sabancaya increased compared to the previous week; there was an average of 82 explosions recorded per day during 13-19 November. Seismicity was dominated by long-period events, with signals indicating emissions. Gas-and-ash plumes rose 4 km above the crater rim and drifted 40 km NE, N, and NW. The MIROVA system detected eight thermal anomalies. The sulfur dioxide flux was high, at 3,103 tons per day on 13 November. The report noted that the public should not to approach the crater within a 12-km radius.

Sheveluch | Central Kamchatka (Russia) : KVERT reported that a thermal anomaly over Sheveluch was identified in satellite images on 11 November; weather clouds prevented observations on the other days during 12-17 November. The Aviation colour Code remained at Orange.

Sinabung | Indonesia : Based on observations by PVMBG, satellite and webcam images, and model data, the Darwin VAAC reported that during 15-19 November ash plumes from Sinabung rose 4.3-4.9 km (14,000-16,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted NW, W, and SW. The Alert Level remained at 4 (on a scale of 1-4).