Space Events

Asteroid Probe

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s (Nasa’s) deep-space explorer Osiris-Rex flew on Monday to within 19km of its destination, a skyscraper-sized asteroid believed to hold organic compounds fundamental to life as well as the potential to collide with Earth in about 150 years.

Bennu, a rocky mass roughly a half a kilometre wide and shaped like a giant acorn, orbits the sun at roughly the same distance as Earth and is thought to be rich in carbon-based organic molecules dating back to the earliest days of the solar system. Water, another vital component to the evolution of life, may also be trapped in the asteroid’s minerals.

Scientists believe that asteroids and comets crashing into early Earth delivered organic compounds and water that seeded the planet for life, and atomic-level analysis of samples from Bennu could help prove that theory.

Scientists estimate there is a one-in-2,700 chance of the asteroid slamming catastrophically into Earth 166 years from now. That probability ranks Bennu number two on Nasa’s catalog of 72 near-Earth objects potentially capable of hitting the planet.

Disease

Hepatitis E – Central African Republic

In a follow-up on the hepatitis E outbreak in Bocaranga-Koui Health District, Central African Republic, since late October, 67 new cases of acute jaundice syndrome were reported, of which 51 were confirmed with hepatitis E virus infection. As of 23 November 2018, a total of 119 cases of acute jaundice syndrome were recorded, including two deaths.

Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.4 earthquake hits southwest of Africa.

5.2 earthquake hits southeast of the Loyalty Islands.

5.2 earthquake hits southwest of Africa.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

In the Southern Hemisphere: Tropical cyclone 05p (Owen), located approximately 563 nm east of Cairns, Australia, is tracking southeastward at 04 knots.

Gl sst mm

NewsBytes:

Saudi Arabia – The Civil Defense has said four people were dead and many others trapped in Madinah due to heavy rain. It said a number of houses in the east of Madinah were submerged and rescue teams were still searching for people entrapped by water. 40 people who were besieged by water in Rabigh were rescued and evacuated to safety.

Wildfires

Wildfires – Queensland, Australia

Strong winds and high temperatures have tested exhausted firefighters battling more than 110 blazes across central Queensland throughout Sunday.

More than 160 firefighting crews were battling the blazes on Sunday night, with bushfires at Deepwater and Eungella, in central Queensland, Tinnanbar, on the Fraser Coast, Karara, near Warwick in the state’s south, and North Stradbroke Island of most concern.

Residents in the Captain Creek area, west of Agnes Water, were told to prepare to leave on Sunday night as an unpredictable bushfire was moving southeast towards the region.

To the south, evacuated residents in the Winfield area, south of Baffle Creek, were advised they could return home on Sunday night as the Deepwater blaze no longer threatened their properties.

And further west, Lowmead residents were told the immediate threat to their homes had passed and they could return home to their rural community.

Disease

Anthrax – Malawi

Malawi officials are reporting an anthrax outbreak in hippopotami in Liwonde township in the southern part of the country. 25 hippos died in the outbreak. The hippos live and feed along the Shire river.

Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

6.3 earthquake hits Kepulauan Barat Daya, Indonesia.

5.6 earthquake hits offshore O’Higgins, Chile.

5.3 earthquake hits the Bouvet Islands.

5.1 earthquake hit southern Alaska.

5.0 earthquake hits southern Alaska.

5.0 earthquake hits Fiji.

5.0 earthquake hits Tonga.

5.0 earthquake hits southeast of the Loyalty Islands.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

In the Southern Hemisphere: Tropical cyclone 05p (Owen), located approximately 543 nm east- northeast of Cairns, Australia, is tracking south-southeastward at 06 knots.

Gl sst mm

Wildfires

Wildfires – CO2 Emissions

Wildfires in California in 2018 released the rough equivalent of about 68 million tons of heat-trapping carbon dioxide — about the same amount of carbon emissions as are produced in a year to provide electricity to the state.

The carbon dioxide figure — based on data analyzed by the U.S. Geological Survey — is more than 15 percent of all emissions produced by California in a year.

Wildfires – Australia

A central Queensland man has died and 10 people including seven children who were caught up in the state’s bushfires have had to be airlifted to safety, as authorities urged residents in the path of the Deepwater bushfire to leave the area immediately.

As two men were arrested for starting fires in central Queensland, more than 100 fires continued to burn across the state. Heatwave conditions were expected to continue over the weekend and the prospect of an incoming cyclone threatened to complicate things further.

Disease

Measles – Madagascar

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a travel advisory for Madagascar due to a large measles outbreak on the island country. Since the first measles cases were reported in the urban health district of Antananarivo Renivohitra (in the heart of the capital city, Antanarivo), health officials have seen 3,239 laboratory confirmed or epidemiologically linked cases.

Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

7.1 earthquake hits southern Alaska.

5.8 earthquake hits southern Alaska.

5.3 earthquake hits southern Alaska.

5.3 earthquake hits the Adriatic Sea.

Two 5.1 earthquakes hit southern Alaska.

5.0 earthquake hits southern Alaska.

5.0 earthquake hits Fiji.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

There are no current tropical storms.

NewsBytes:

Turkey – For the second time in 10 days, flood water has surged through the streets of Bodrum. The Turkish city which is the gateway to nearby holiday resorts during the summer is currently a scene of flood damage. Heavy rainfall swept cars down the streets and left them either submerged or stacked. The downpour was preceded by a waterspout, seen to form under a thunderstorm and drift towards the beach. The following rain went on into the night.

Disease

African Swine Fever – China

China has confirmed a new outbreak of African swine fever in the municipality of Tianjin, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs said Friday. The outbreak was found on a farm with a total of 361 pigs in the Ninghe district of Tianjin, among which 67 were confirmed to have died from the disease, the ministry said, citing a China Animal Disease Control Center report. Local authorities have initiated an emergency response to block, cull and disinfect the affected pigs.

Poliovirus – Afghanistan

UN health officials are reporting the 20th wild poliovirus case in Afghanistan, making it the most cases seen in the country since 2015. The latest case reported is from Shaheed-e-Hassas district of Urozgan province– a 3-year-old boy who is now permanently paralyzed by the poliovirus.

Fourteen cases have been reported in the south of the country and six cases in the east. From the south, nine cases have been reported in Kandahar, three cases in Helmand and two cases in Urozgan and from the east, three cases in Kunar, two cases in Nangarhar and one case in Nuristan.