Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

6.0 earthquake hits the Komandorskiye Ostrova region, Russia.

5.4 earthquake hits the Komandorskiye Ostrova region, Russia.

5.3 earthquake hits the Molucca Sea.

5.2 earthquake hits the Kuril Islands.

5.2 earthquake hits off the east coast of Honshu, Japan.

5.0 earthquake hits the Izu Islands off Japan.

5.0 earthquake hits south of the Kermedec Islands.

5.0 earthquake hits the Komandorskiye Ostrova region, Russia.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

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In the Western Pacific: Tropical depression 35w (Thirty-five), located approximately 72 nm northeast of Koror, Palau, is tracking northwestward at 09 knots.

In the Southern Hemisphere: Tropical cyclone (tc) 07s (Cilida), located approximately 696 nm southeast of Port Louis, Mauritius, is tracking southeastward at 13 knots.

NewsBytes:

Indonesia – Indonesian rescuers on Tuesday used drones and sniffer dogs to search for survivors along the devastated west coast of Java hit by a series of tsunamis that killed at least 373 people, warning more victims are expected to be uncovered as the search expands. Thick ash clouds continued to spew from Anak Krakatau, a volcanic island where a crater collapse at high tide on Saturday sending tsunamis smashing into coastal areas on both sides of the Sunda Strait between the islands of Sumatra and Java. At least 128 people remain missing. More than 1,400 people were injured, and thousands of residents had to move to higher ground, with a high-tide warning extended to Wednesday.

Global Warming

Climate change is destroying Lebanon’s biblical cedar trees

The cedar trees of Lebanon have survived for millennia. King Solomon is said to have used the tall, strong evergreens to build his temple in Jerusalem. The Phoenicians chopped them down to build ships, the ancient Egyptians to make paper.

But conservationists are warning the usually resilient trees are now facing the biggest threat to their existence – climate change. Today in the Chouf Biosphere Reserve south of the Lebanese capital Beirut, black branchless trunks jut from the ground where young, healthy ones once stood.

The cedars, which grow in Lebanon and a handful of other Mediterranean countries where they enjoy the high altitude and humid climate, are suffering from the longer, hotter summers and drier winters.

In the 1950s, it typically rained or snowed here 100 days a year or more. The relatively cool temperatures through winter would keep snow on the ground for months. However, the last few winters have seen an average of just 40-50. Temperatures, meanwhile, have risen 2 degrees.

The warming earth has encouraged greater numbers of sawflies, the Cephalcia tannourinensis, which burrow into the cedars’ trunks and feast on their needles. While the larvae first began to appear in the 1990s, they have previously gone unnoticed because their cycles did not interfere with the trees, now, the insects mostly target the relatively younger trees – those aged between 20-100 years. Last year, 170 trees dried up completely and died. It was like a fire had ravaged the forest.

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Disease

China reports new African swine fever outbreak in Fujian province

China’s agriculture ministry on Monday reported another new outbreak of African swine fever, this time in the southeastern province of Fujian, which has killed 11 pigs on a farm of 5,776 pigs.