Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.3 earthquake hits the Island of Hawaii.

5.0 earthquake hits Kepulauan Babar, Indonesia.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

In the Southern Hemisphere: Tropical cyclone (tc) 18s (Idai), located approximately 221 nm north-northwest of Europa Island, is tracking westward at 07 knots.

Tropical cyclone 19s (Savannah), located approximately 1412 nm east-southeast of Diego Garcia, is tracking southwestward at 08 knots.

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Mozambique – Update – At least 66 people have been killed and 141,000 affected after heavy rains deluged central and northern Mozambique. The government has decreed a red alert.

USA – A window-rattling late winter storm brought blizzards, floods and a tornado across more than 25 states Wednesday, stretching from the northern Rocky Mountains to Texas and beyond. Hundreds of drivers were stranded on Colorado highways, including 500 in the Colorado Springs area alone. Scores of motorists took refuge at truck stops in eastern Wyoming while blowing snow forced portions of major highways to close in Colorado, Nebraska and South Dakota.

Iowa, USA – An Iowa city has been evacuated and an interstate shut down as rain and melting snow flood the western portion of the state. Harrison County Emergency Management has ordered a partial evacuation of Missouri Valley. People south of Highway 30 and east of Interstate 29 — about 10 percent of the city — have been told to leave. Parts of Missouri Valley, which is about 22 miles north of Council Bluffs and has about 2,600 people, are already underwater.

Global Warming

Dire UN climate change report

Earth is sick with multiple and worsening environmental ills killing millions of people yearly, a new U.N. report says.

Climate change, a global major extinction of animals and plants, a human population soaring toward 10 billion, degraded land, polluted air, and plastics, pesticides and hormone-changing chemicals in the water are making the planet an increasing unhealthy place for people, says the scientific report issued once every few years.

The sixth Global Environment Outlook, released Wednesday at a U.N. conference in Nairobi, Kenya, concludes “unsustainable human activities globally have degraded the Earth’s ecosystems, endangering the ecological foundations of society.”

But the same document says changes in the way the world eats, buys things, gets its energy and handles its waste could help fix the problems.

The report details climate change impacts on human health, air, water, land and biodiversity. Almost all coastal cities and small island nations are increasingly vulnerable to flooding from rising seas and extreme weather.

A major species extinction event, compromising planetary integrity and Earth’s capacity to meet human needs, is unfolding,” the report says, listing threats to ecosystems, fisheries and other major systems. It notes conservationists are divided on whether Earth is in a sixth mass extinction.

People getting sick from diseases caused by antimicrobial resistant bacteria in water supplies could become a major cause of death worldwide by 2050, unless something can be done about it, the report says.

Land is getting less fertile and useful. The report says degradation “hot spots,” where it’s difficult to grow crops, now cover 29 percent of all land areas. The rate of deforestation has slowed but continues.

Space Events

Solar Storm

A solar storm is incoming after a huge hole opened on the surface of the Sun’s atmosphere, scientists have warned. The storm, which could knock out GPS, mobile phone signal, and digital television, is expected to hit Earth on Friday, March 15, and is the result of a “canyon-shaped” hole in the Sun’s upper atmosphere. The long and narrow slit in the Sun’s atmosphere – known as a coronal hole – is unleashing a barrage of cosmic rays and unfortunately for Earth, it is in the way. Space weather forecasting experts have predicted the solar storm will reach us on March 15.


Measles – Madagascar – Update

In an update on the measles epidemic in Madagascar, UN health officials report 6,607 cases of measles, including 41 deaths in the week ending Feb. 24. This down several thousand cases from the prior week (9,902). This brings the outbreak total to 86,985 cases, including 1,141 deaths since the outbreak began in early September 2018.


Global Volcanic Activity – New Activity for the week of 6 March – 12 March 2019

Barren Island | Andaman Islands (India) : Based on analysis of satellite imagery and wind data, the Darwin VAAC reported that on 7 March ash plumes from Barren Island rose to an altitude of 1.8 km (6,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted W and NW, and to an altitude of 1.2 km (4,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted E and ESE.

Bezymianny | Central Kamchatka (Russia) : KVERT reported that a thermal anomaly over Bezymianny was identified in satellite images during 1-12 March. Strong gas-end-steam emissions continued to rise from the crater. Hot avalanches originating from the top of the lava dome were visible at night. The Aviation colour Code remained at Orange (the second highest level on a four-colour scale).

Karymsky | Eastern Kamchatka (Russia) : KVERT reported that ash plumes from Karymsky were identified in satellite images during 1 and 4-5 March rising as high as 3.5 km (11,500 ft) a.s.l. and drifting 90 km E. A thermal anomaly was also visible on those same days. The Aviation colour Code remained at Orange (the second highest level on a four-colour scale).

Mayon | Luzon (Philippines) : PHIVOLCS reported that during 6-11 March white steam plumes periodically emitted from Mayon drifted WNW, WSW, and SW, and crater incandescence was visible each night. As many as six volcanic earthquakes and two rockfalls per day were recorded by the seismic network. Phreatic events recorded at 0811 on 7 March and 0627 on 8 March generated grayish ash plumes that rose 500 and 300 m above the crater, respectively, and drifted SW. The Alert Level remained at 2 (on a 0-5 scale) and PHIVOLCS reminded residents to stay away from the 6-km-radius Permanent Danger Zone and the 7-km Extended Danger Zone on the SSW and ENE flanks.

Piton de la Fournaise | Reunion Island (France) : During an overflight between 0700 and 0800 on 6 March tourists observed a new active fissure on the NW flank of Piton de la Fournaise’s Piton Madoré, 150 m upstream of the main vent. The fissure likely opened the day before during 0900 and 1900. The tourist report noted that a small cone had formed, and a lava flow was traveling N. In the morning of 7 March at least six new vents were visible, although weather conditions prevented OVPF volcanologists from confirming if they were along a new fissure. During fieldwork on 8 March volcanologists inspected the 5 March fissure and observed a small cone ejecting material up to 10 m above the rim. Lava from the W side flowed a few tens of meters, and a flow from the N side progressed E. The new vents that opened on 7 March were confirmed to be along an E-W trending fissure. The vents were active, each producing 50-m-high lava fountains. The report also noted that samples from the 5 March and 7 March vents had different compositions, though no other details were noted. Lava flows traveled to around 1,000 m elevation. Satellite images showed sulfur dioxide plumes drifting 450-550 km E on 8 March. Lava flows rapidly progressed during 8-9 March; the lava emission rate was variable, ranging up to 25 cubic meters per second (based on satellite data), although since the new fissures opened the highest values (over 50 cubic meters per second) measured the past few days were approximately 10 times higher than the average values recorded during the 2017-2018 eruptions. By 0800 on 9 March the flow front was at an estimated elevation of 650-700 m. After a phase of intense surficial activity during 9-10 March, with lava fountains rising as high as 100 m, lava-flow emissions ceased around 0628 on 10 March and seismicity significantly decreased.

San Cristobal | Nicaragua : INETER reported that a low-energy explosion at San Cristóbal was detected by the seismic network at 1550 on 4 March. The event produced a gas-and-ash plume that rose 400 m above the crater rim and drifted SW.

Tengger Caldera | Eastern Java (Indonesia) : PVMBG reported that on 10 March an eruption at Tengger Caldera’s Bromo cone generated a white, brown, and gray ash plume that, according to a ground observer, rose 600 m and drifted SW. An event at 0600 on 11 March produced a dense gray-to-brown ash plume that rose 600 m and drifted S, SW, and W. The Alert Level remained at 2 (on a scale of 1-4).