Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.7 earthquake hits New Britain, Papua New Guinea.

5.5 earthquake hits the mid-Indian ridge.

5.2 earthquake hits Greece.

5.2 earthquake hits Kyushu, Japan.

5.1 earthquake hits the Flores region, Indonesia.

5.0 earthquake hits the Solomon Islands.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

In the Southern Hemisphere: Tropical cyclone 22s (Joaninha), located approximately 748 nm east-southeast of Port Louis, Mauritius, is tracking south-southeastward at 10 knots.

Drought – Philippines

Recent PAGASA’s climate monitoring and analyses indicate that the unusually warm sea surface temperatures (SSTs) in the central and eastern equatorial Pacific (CEEP) which started since November 2018 is expected to become a full-blown El Nino. During the past three months, rainfall analyses showed that impacts of below normal rainfall conditions in provinces of Western Mindanao and Ilocos Norte were already experienced and are expected to continue. Drought conditions are being reported in the MIMAROPA Region, Region IX, and Region XII, BARMM and Metro Manila, where ten provinces have declared a State of Calamity according to the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC).

Wildlife

Diving lizard creates its own oxygen pockets

Lizards in Costa Rica may have evolved a technique to recycle their own air using bubbles that form on their heads as they hide from predators underwater. These lizards often dive into nearby water sources in response to threats and stay submerged until danger passes. The lizards manage to stay underwater for as long as 16 minutes. They exhale air bubbles that stick to the top of their heads before re-inhaling the air — essentially recycling it.

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Global Warming

State of the Climate in 2018 shows accelerating climate change impacts

The physical signs and socio-economic impacts of climate change are accelerating as record greenhouse gas concentrations drive global temperatures towards increasingly dangerous levels, according to a new report from the World Meteorological Organization.

The WMO Statement on the State of the Global Climate in 2018, its 25th anniversary edition, highlights record sea level rise, as well as exceptionally high land and ocean temperatures over the past four years. This warming trend has lasted since the start of this century and is expected to continue.

“Since the Statement was first published, climate science has achieved an unprecedented degree of robustness, providing authoritative evidence of global temperature increase and associated features such as accelerating sea level rise, shrinking sea ice, glacier retreat and extreme events such as heat waves,” said WMO Secretary-General Petteri Taalas.

These key climate change indicators are becoming more pronounced. Carbon dioxide levels, which were at 357.0 parts per million when the statement was first published in 1994, keep rising – to 405.5 parts per million in 2017. For 2018 and 2019, greenhouse gas concentrations are expected to increase further.

Wildfires

Wildfires – Australia

A number of buildings have been damaged or destroyed by fire in central Victoria, with several grassfires burning west and south of Ballarat.

One fire had been threatening homes at Bunkers Hill, Cardigan, Haddon, Kopke, Lucas and Smythes Creek and a second larger fire earlier threatened properties at Mount Mercer, about 30 kilometres south of Ballarat.

Both fires have now been contained or brought under control and the crisis has eased.

Disease

Congolese don’t believe Ebola outbreak is real

A quarter of people interviewed in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo last year during the ongoing Ebola outbreak there didn’t believe the deadly virus was real, according to a new study. The survey released Wednesday found that a deep mistrust of Ebola response workers resulted in those people being 15 times less likely to seek medical treatment at a health center.