Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

6.0 earthquake hits off the coast of Hokkaido, Japan.

5.7 earthquake hits the Bougainville region, Papua New Guinea.

5.4 earthquake hits offshore Coquimbo, Chile.

5.1 earthquake hits the northern Mid-Atlantic ridge.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

In the Southern Hemisphere: Tropical cyclone (tc) 17s (Haleh), located approximately 337 nm south-southeast of Diego Garcia, is tracking south-southwestward at 08 knots.

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Environment

False Spring

With Britain experiencing some of its warmest late-February weather on record, naturalists are concerned for the early-emerging species.

Birds across the U.K. are already nesting and mating, with some arriving more than a month early.

But with the prediction of more typical late-winter weather in March, Tony Whitehead of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds says early-arriving swallows are taking a big risk to get good nesting sites.

Other naturalists say that flowers, insects and reptiles that have emerged early from winter could be in peril if a sudden chill arrives.

Nature – Images

Interesting Images

Sunfish in California

Researchers were surprised when they found a dead hoodwinker sunfish on Sands Beach in Santa Barbara County on Feb. 19, so far away from the fish’s native swimming grounds in southeastern Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and perhaps Chile, the first time a sunfish has been found in the northern hemisphere. Because the sunfish is so rarely found, it took researchers a few days to identify the creature.

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Wildfires

Wildfires – Australia

Hundreds of firefighters will work through the night battling blazes across Victoria’s east as raging bushfires continue to threaten homes and properties. Dozens of communities are at risk with at least four fires burning out-of-control on Saturday with many residents in nearby towns told to take shelter or to leave before it was too late.

A massive 3400 hectare blaze is tearing through the Bunyip State Park, near Tonumbik about 65km east of Melbourne, after four smaller fires merged on Saturday. Water bombers will be used throughout the night to tackle the blaze along with about 300 firefighters on the ground

Disease

Measles – Madagascar – Update

In a follow-up on the measles outbreak on the island country of Madagascar, UNICEF reports from 3 September to 21 February, 76,871 people were infected by measles and 928 died, a majority of which were children.

Dengue Fever – Peru

The Regional Health Office–Geresa has reported 33 confirmed cases of dengue in several localities of Lambayeque this year.

El Niño caused global disease outbreaks

Between 2015 and 2016, the weather phenomenon known as El Niño inadvertently set off a chain of events that led to global disease outbreaks.

But during the 2015-2016 event, NASA’s researchers found that El Niño changed precipitation, land surface temperatures and vegetation, facilitating conditions for the transmission of diseases. The aftermath resulted in a surge of reported cases for plague and hantavirus in the US states of Colorado and New Mexico; cholera in Tanzania; and dengue fever in Brazil and south-east Asia, among others. These findings are the first to comprehensively show the public health impacts of a major climate event on a global scale.