Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.2 earthquake hits the Kermedec Islands.

5.0 earthquake hits the Sumba region, Indonesia.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

There are no current tropical storms.

NewsBytes:

Lebanon – A winter storm battering Lebanon has displaced hundreds of Syrian refugees and flooded tented settlements while further bad weather threatens thousands more. The UNHCR in Lebanon has launched an extreme weather response as thousands of refugees across the country are in need of supplies, food and temporary accommodation after refugee settlements in low lying areas flooded. Winter storm Norma has submerged streets across Beirut, closed roads and forced thousands of schools to shut their doors.

Zimbabwe – AS flash floods continue to hit parts of the second capital city, Bulawayo, City officials, in an effort to prevent the recurrence of flooding, have warned residents against obstructing the free flow of water.

Global Warming

Lake Baikal threatened by Climate Change

Lake Baikal, the world’s oldest, deepest lake, is feeling the temperature of human-induced climate change. Situated in southern Siberia, Baikal occupies one of the fastest warming regions on the planet and, as a result, the lake itself has got warmer, seasonal ice is present for a shorter period of time and has got thinner, and its waters have become stratified for longer periods. These changes have already had an impact on the lake’s microscopic life, including phytoplankton and zooplankton.

Most of the energy in Lake Baikal’s food web ultimately comes from photosynthesis by tiny diatoms. As with most plants and animals found in Baikal, these diatoms are mainly endemic – that is, they are found nowhere else in the world.

The latest research data showed that a significant change in the diatoms occurred at the very start of the 1970s, at the same time as the lake began to warm and ice thinned. The endemic diatoms are being replaced by non-endemic diatoms that can tolerate the warming conditions in the Lake.

Why is this important? Climate change is already interfering with ecosystems in other large, ancient lakes, such as Lake Tanganyika in East Africa. What happens to plankton has a knock on effect up the food web, causing fish to struggle and also, ultimately, those humans who depend on the ecosystem for their livelihood.

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Nature – Images

Interesting Images

Awe-inspiring though it is, this is not a sight you want to see from your kitchen window.

This towering structure is known as a pyrocumulus cloud – a sure sign that a bushfire has morphed into a full firestorm, complete with its own devastating effects.

These firestorms create their own weather with lightning, strong winds, and even tornadoes that spread fire in multiple directions. These ingredients make them impossible for firefighters to put out.

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Volcanos

Global Volcanic Activity – January 10 2019

Shiveluch (Kamchatka): Explosive activity continues. Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC) Tokyo warned about a volcanic ash plume that rose up to estimated 23000 ft (7000 m) altitude or flight level 230 and is moving at 20 kts in W direction. Explosive activity continues. Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC) Tokyo warned about a volcanic ash plume that rose up to estimated 23000 ft (7000 m) altitude or flight level 230 and is moving at 25 kts in W direction.

Ebeko (Paramushir Island): (9 Jan) Volcanic Ash Advisory Center Tokyo (VAAC) issued the following report: ERUPTION AT 20190109/2136Z FL070 EXTD NE REPORTED OBS VA DTG:09/2140Z

Krakatau (Sunda Strait, Indonesia): The northern coast of Rakata Island, facing Anak Krakatau, was hit by massive waves (up to approx 30 m high) during the catastrophic landslide and tsunami on the evening of 22 Dec. The entire beach and the slightly higher, up to 50 m wide forested platform behind it, separating it from the cliff, have been washed away and/or collapsed in landslides following the receding wave.

Dukono (Halmahera): Volcanic Ash Advisory Center Darwin (VAAC) issued the following report: CONTIUOUS VA EMISSIONS TO FL070 EST VA DTG:10/0130Z

Agung (Bali): Explosive activity continues. Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC) Darwin warned about a volcanic ash plume that rose up to estimated 18000 ft (5500 m) altitude or flight level 180 and is moving at 10 kts in W direction.

Popocatépetl (Central Mexico): Volcanic Ash Advisory Center Washington (VAAC) issued the following report: VA EMS SEEN IN STLT.

Fuego (Guatemala): (10 Jan) Volcanic Ash Advisory Center Washington (VAAC) issued the following report: VA DISP.

Reventador (Ecuador): Volcanic Ash Advisory Center Washington (VAAC) issued the following report: VA DETECTED IN STLT.

Sabancaya (Peru): Explosive activity continues. Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC) Buenos Aires warned about a volcanic ash plume that rose up to estimated 24000 ft (7300 m) altitude or flight level 240 .

Disease

Hantavirus – Argentina

Officials with the Government of Chubut in the Patagonia region of southern Argentina is reporting an unprecedented hantavirus outbreak. According to the latest numbers, 24 cases have been reported, including eight fatalities. But the biggest concern of this outbreak is its person-to-person contagion.

Meningococcal Disease – Ireland

Three people have died following an outbreak of meningococcal disease in Ireland, according to the Health Service Executive (HSE). Meningococcal disease can cause meningitis or septicaemia, which requires urgent antibiotic treatment. Eleven cases have been reported since the last week of December.

Yellow Fever – Nigeria

On 22 November 2018, the World Health Organization was informed of a cluster of suspected Yellow fever (YF) cases and deaths in Edo State, Nigeria. Edo State is located less than 400km from Lagos on a dense population movement axis between Lagos and South-Eastern Nigeria. Edo State is also a known endemic area for Lassa fever – which was initially suspected as causing the outbreak. From 22 September through 31 December 2018, a total of 146 suspected, 42 presumptive positive, and 32 confirmed cases, including 26 deaths (presumptive case fatality rate: 18%), have been reported across 15 of 18 Local Government Areas (LGAs) in Edo State.