Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

6.3 earthquake hits Vancouver Island, Canada.

6.0 earthquake hits Colombia.

6.0 earthquake hits Santiago del Estero, Argentina.

5.2 earthquake hits the Kuril Islands.

5.2 earthquake hits Colombia.

5.1 earthquake hits Vanuatu.

5.0 earthquake hits Tonga.

5.0 earthquake hits the Izu Islands off Japan.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

In the Western Pacific Ocean: Tropical storm 30w (Phanfone), located approximately 151 nm south of Manila, Philippines, is tracking west-northwestward at 11 knots.

NewsBytes:

DR Congo – More than 40 people have died from floods that have worsened the humanitarian situation in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Over 876 000 have been affected by the floods that have hit 12 provinces (out of 25) in the country resulting in high risks of cholera outbreaks and a resurgence of diarrheal diseases. Poor hygiene conditions and water contamination raise such fears. The floods that claimed 41 lives have further exacerbated local populations’ vulnerabilities by rendering access to basic services such as schools and health centres inaccessible or destroyed.

Global Warming

The ice we’ve lost to climate change

One of the most poignant climate moments of 2019 was a funeral for ice: an August ceremony in Iceland for the country’s Okjökull glacier. As can be seen in these NASA satellite images, the glacier declined dramatically between 1986 and 2019.

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The Arctic in particular is warming twice as fast as the global average and experienced many historic heat waves. The warming, in turn, is causing an unprecedented amount of melt in the world’s ice. We are currently in the midst of the fastest decline of Arctic sea ice in 1,500 years.

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In the past decade, the rate of ice melt in Antarctica tripled compared to 2007.

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We’ll likely lose even more from the coldest parts of the world in the coming decade. But the actions we all take will shape just how much is lost.

Wildlife

Rhino Poaching – Botswana

Thirteen rhinos have been poached in Botswana in the last two months, the tourism ministry said, as the government tries to crack down on hunting of the endangered species.

The country is home to just under 400 rhinos, according to Rhino Conservation Botswana, most of them roam the grassy plains of the northern Okavango Delta.

The number of rhinos poached since October 2018 now stands at 31. Twenty-three of those were white rhinoceros and eight were black rhinoceros, which are classified as critically endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

Wildfires

Wildfires – Australia

The number of homes razed by bushfires this season has climbed to almost 1,000, the NSW Rural Fire Service (RFS) says in its latest impact assessment.

After re-entering the charred remains of towns ravaged by fire in the past week, the RFS confirmed 873 homes had been destroyed since July 1. That figure is in addition to 100 homes believed destroyed since last Thursday, which the RFS has not yet included in its official count. The RFS said an additional 2,048 outbuildings and 68 facilities were levelled by the blaze.

Meanwhile, residents and travellers have been left stranded by extensive road closures caused by the bushfires. Hundreds of kilometres of roads, including major highways and busy arteries, around the state were closed in both directions.

Disease

Chicken Pox – Taiwan

In a follow-up on the chickenpox outbreak in Taiwan, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) says the chickenpox epidemic is heating up, reminding the public to be alert. They reported 940 outpatient visits for chickenpox last week, which was higher than the previous two weeks.