Global Warming

Animated Earth Map Shows Extent of Global Heat Wave

Earth is boiling under record-high temperatures. Global heat waves have landed thousands of people in the hospital and fueled massive wildfires in places ranging from Greece to the Arctic Circle.

An animation called “earth” shows just how high worldwide temperatures really are. The animation, designed by computer programmer Cameron Beccario, an engineering manager at Indeed Tokyo in Japan, updates every 3 hours with weather data taken from the National Centers for Environmental Prediction’s Global Forecast System.

Wildlife

Worms Frozen for 42,000 Years in Siberian Permafrost Wriggle to Life

In Siberia, melting permafrost is releasing nematodes — microscopic worms that live in soil — that have been suspended in a deep freeze since the Pleistocene. Despite being frozen for tens of thousands of years, two species of these worms were successfully revived, scientists recently reported in a new study.

Their findings, published in the May 2018 issue of the journal Doklady Biological Sciences, represent the first evidence of multicellular organisms returning to life after a long-term slumber in Arctic permafrost, the researchers wrote.

However, the nematodes weren’t the first organism to awaken from millennia in icy suspension. Previously, another group of scientists had identified a giant virus that was resuscitated after spending 30,000 years frozen in Siberian permafrost. (Amoebas are the only animal affected by this ancient attacker.)

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Environment

Drought in El Salvador

In El Salvador, there will be a meeting of the United Nations country team tomorrow [27 July] to develop a plan of action following the declaration by the Government of a red alert emergency due to the severe drought affecting some 77,000 corn farmers. Lack of rain led to losses of over 90,000 metric tons of corn, one of the main staple foods in the country. The eastern part of the country has reported 33 consecutive days without rain and record temperatures reaching 41°C.

Wildfires

Wildfires – Oregon, USA

The Taylor Creek Fire roared to life Thursday, sending a smoke column 10,000 feet in the sky and crossing containment lines in a few places. The wildfire burning west of Grants Pass and Merlin grew to 16,500 acres by Friday morning. That’s an increase of almost 3,000 acres, and a level 3 evacuation has been issued for Taylor Creek Road, near Galice outside Grants Pass, due to the Taylor Creek Fire.

Disease

Trichinosis – Argentina

In a follow-up on the trichinosis outbreak in the town of Canals, Argentina, the outbreak has grown from a several dozen to 232. In Río Cuarto, three other cases of trichinosis were also detected, which are related to an outbreak in the province of San Luis.

In response to the outbreak, confiscation operations, animal interdictions and gondola food recalls were carried out to prevent further infections.

Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.4 earthquake hits the South Sandwich Islands.

5.2 earthquake hits the island of Hawaii, Hawaii.

5.1 earthquake hits the northern mid-Atlantic Ridge.

5.0 earthquake hits the Savu Sea.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

Gl sst mm

In the Western Pacific Ocean: Typhoon (td) 15w (Jongdari), located approximately 565 nm southeast of Yokosuka, Japan, is tracking northeastward at 20 knots.

In the Eastern Pacific Ocean: Tropical Depression Nine-E is located about 1315 mi…2115 km ese of Hilo Hawaii with maximum sustained winds…35 mph…55 km/h. Present movement…w or 270 degrees at 12 mph…19 km/h.

Tropical Storm Gilma is located about 1245 mi…2005 km wsw of the southern tip of Baja California nd about 1940 mi…3125 km e of South Point Hawaii with maximum sustained winds…40 mph…65 km/h. Present movement…wnw or 285 degrees at 16 mph…26 km/h.

NewsBytes:

Romania – Romanian authorities say two people have drowned in floodwaters after heavy rain in the country’s northeast, with 51 000 emergency workers mobilized to help flood-rescue efforts.

Bangladesh – Heavy monsoon rains triggered landslides and flooding in southeastern Bangladesh on Wednesday, killing five children and forcing a thousand people to relocate, including in the Rohingya refugee camps.

Myanmar – More than 16,000 people are thought to have been displaced by floods following heavy monsoon rains in Myanmar, also known as Burma. The flood began at the weekend and worst hit the country’s eastern Kayin state on the border with Thailand. Large areas have been evacuated and people were moved to shelters to wait for the waters to subside.

Environment

Erratic Jet Stream

The jet stream, the ribbon of wind that circles the Earth is contorting into extreme loops sharply towards the poles with ridges of high pressure and dips to the equator with low pressure.

The resultant calamity list includes wildfires across Scandinavia, Greece and California, record heat in Texas, Japan and Africa and flooding rains along the U.S. East Coast that could last another week. The world is hotter in general, which means when temperatures spike, they do so off a higher baseline.

Plastic Pollution in the Dominican Republic

Large waves of plastic pollution washed onto the coast of the Dominican Republic, prompting officials to dispatch more than 500 workers to remove the debris from a beach in the capital of Santo Domingo.

More than 1,000 tons of plastic waste, including bottles and foam takeout boxes mixed with seaweed, were hauled away. The debris was said to have washed onto the beach from a nearby polluted river.

Parley for the Oceans, a group working to reduce plastic waste in the world’s oceans, says the phenomenon occurs in many developing nations with a coastline.

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Global Warming

Climate Change Threatens Greenland’s Sled Dog Culture

People in Greenland have long relied on sled dogs to hunt and fish on the ice.

But this tradition is slowly fading. Unstable winter seas are forcing fishermen to use boats instead of sled dogs to fish and hunt seals, threatening the historic tradition of its unique hunting lifestyle.

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Environment

Global Temperature Extremes

The week’s hottest temperature was 127 degrees Fahrenheit (52.8 degrees Celsius) in Death Valley, California.

The week’s coldest temperature was minus 92.0 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 68.9 degrees Celsius) at Vostok, Antarctica.

Temperatures were tabulated from the more than 10,000 worldwide synoptic weather stations. The United Nations World Meteorological Organization sets the standards for weather observations, and provides a global telecommunications circuit for data distribution.

Wildfires

Wildfires – California, USA

Firefighters are battling several wildfires across the state that is prompting hundreds of people to evacuate.

The Cranston Fire is exploding in the mountains east of Los Angeles, growing to 4,700 acres in just a few hours near the town of Idyllwild — 500 firefighters are battling giant flames, strong winds, and scorching temperatures. At least one home was destroyed. The entire community has been evacuated.

Near Yosemite, the Ferguson Fire continues to grow, now at 41, 576 acres and 26 percent contained. As the fire inches closer, visitors to the park forced to leave. Thick smoke is everywhere.

Volcanos

Roundup of Global Volcanic Activity – Ongoing Activity for the week of 18 July – 24 July 2018

Agung | Bali (Indonesia) : PVMBG reported that plumes rose 200-500 m above Agung’s crater rim on 18, 20, and 23 July. Gray plumes rose as high as 1.5 km on 22 July. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a scale of 1-4) and the exclusion zone was stable at a 4-km radius.

Aira | Kyushu (Japan) : JMA reported that at 1336 on 17 July an event at Minamidake crater (at Aira Caldera’s Sakurajima volcano) produced a plume that rose 1.2 km above the crater rim. Sulfur dioxide emissions were 1,300 tons per day that same day. Occasional small events were recorded during 20-23 July, and crater incandescence was visible on 22 and 23 July. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a 5-level scale).

Ambae | Vanuatu : Based on satellite data, webcam observations, and wind model data, the Wellington VAAC reported that during 17-24 July ash plumes from the vent at Ambae’s Lake Voui rose to altitudes of 2.1-5.5 km (7,000-18,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted N, NE, E, and SE. According to news articles, activity intensified on 17 July with significant ashfall impacting the N and E parts of the island, causing dark conditions for residents. Rumbling noises were reported at Penama Provincial Headquarters at Saratamata, more than 30 km away. Volcanologists conducting field work in the areas noted widespread damage and disruption to the local population; roads going to the W part of the island had been washed away.

Bagana | Bougainville (Papua New Guinea) : Based on analyses of satellite imagery and model data, the Darwin VAAC reported that on 22 July an ash plume from Bagana rose to an altitude of 2.4 km (8,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted W.

Cleveland | Chuginadak Island (USA) : AVO reported that unrest at Cleveland continued during 18-23 July, though nothing significant was detected in seismic or infrasound data. Weakly elevated surface temperatures were identified in satellite images during 18 and 23-24 July; meteorological cloud cover hindered views of the crater on most of the other days. A small deposit of blocks within the summit crater and just below the E crater rim observed only in satellite data suggested the occurrence of a very small explosion undetectable in seismic and pressure sensor data. The Aviation colour Code remained at Orange and the Volcano Alert Level remained at Watch.

Dukono | Halmahera (Indonesia) : Based on PVMBG observations and satellite data, the Darwin VAAC reported that during 18-23 July ash plumes from Dukono rose to an altitude of 1.8 km (6,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted NW, N, NE, and E.

Ebeko | Paramushir Island (Russia) : Volcanologists in Severo-Kurilsk (Paramushir Island), about 7 km E of Ebeko, observed explosions during 13-20 July that sent ash plumes as high as 3.4 km (11,200 ft) a.s.l. The Aviation colour Code remained at Orange (the second highest level on a four-colour scale).

Fuego | Guatemala : INSIVUMEH reported that during 19-20 and 23-24 July avalanches of material from Fuego’s crater descended the S, SW, and W flanks (Santa Teresa, Las Lajas, El Jute, and Cenizas drainages). Weak explosions during 23-24 July sent low ash plumes N.

Karymsky | Eastern Kamchatka (Russia) : KVERT reported that a thermal anomaly over Karymsky was identified in satellite images during 13-20 July, along with ash plumes that drifted as far as 500 km W and SW during 14-19 July. The Aviation colour Code remained at Orange (the second highest level on a four-colour scale).

Kerinci | Indonesia : Based on satellite data, the Darwin VAAC reported that on 22 July an ash plume from Kerinci rose to an altitude of 4.3 km (14,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted SW.

Kilauea | Hawaiian Islands (USA) : HVO reported that the eruption at Kilauea’s Lower East Rift Zone (LERZ) and within Halema`uma`u Crater continued during 18-24 July. Lava fountaining and spatter was concentrated at Fissure 8, feeding lava flows that spread through Leilani Estates and Lanipuna Gardens subdivisions, and built out the coastline at multiple ocean entries.

Inward slumping of the crater rim and walls of Halema`uma`u continued, adjusting from the withdrawal of magma and subsidence of the summit area. Explosions from collapse events occurred almost daily, often followed by a surge in activity at Fissure 8. Sulfur dioxide emissions from the summit were very low.

Fountaining at Fissure 8 continued, producing Pele’s hair and other volcanic glass that fell within Leilani Estates. The fountains continued to feed the lava flow that traveled NE, and then SSE, W of Kapoho Crater. Channel overflows on 18 July destroyed structures in the Leilani Subdivision. The channelized ‘a’a flow was incandescent along its entire length as it flowed towards the ocean. It generated plumes of laze (a corrosive steam plume mixed with hydrochloric acid and fine volcanic glass particles) at several points along a broad 6-km-wide flow front, though the main entry area was at Ahalanui, a few hundred meters E of the flow edge which was 175 m NE of Isaac Hale Park (by 24 July). HVO noted that the lava delta was unstable as it has been built out as far as 800 m from the original coastline on unconsolidated lava fragments and sand.

Pacaya | Guatemala : INSIVUMEH reported that during 19-20 and 23-24 July Strombolian explosions at Pacaya’s Mackenney Crater ejected material as high as 30 m above the crater rim. A 200-m-long lava flow originating from Mackenney Crater was visible on NW flank.

Sabancaya | Peru : Observatorio Vulcanológico del Sur del IGP (OVS-IGP) and Observatorio Vulcanológico del INGEMMET (OVI) reported that explosions at Sabancaya averaged 25 per day during 16-22 July. Hybrid earthquakes were infrequent and low-magnitude. Gas-and-ash plumes rose as high as 2.5 km above the crater rim and drifted 30 km S, SE, and E. The MIROVA system detected one thermal anomaly, and on 18 July the sulfur dioxide gas flux was very high at 12,068 tons/day. The report noted that the public should not approach the crater within a 12-km radius.

Sheveluch | Central Kamchatka (Russia) : KVERT reported that satellite images showed a thermal anomaly over Sheveluch during 13-20 July, and a plume of re-suspended ash drifting 62 km SE on 18 July. The Aviation colour Code remained at Orange (the second highest level on a four-colour scale).

Turrialba | Costa Rica : OVSICORI-UNA reported increased activity at Turrialba during 23-24 July characterized by small sporadic emissions. A very low and diffuse ash plume rose from the crater on 24 July, causing ashfall in Coronado, Tibás (35 km WSW), Goicoechea (28 km WSW), Moravia (31 km WSW), and other areas in the Valle Central.

Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.7 earthquake hits the South Sandwich Islands.

5.2 earthquake hits Easter Island.

5.2 earthquake hits the Banda Sea.

5.0 earthquake hits Easter Island.

5.0 earthquake hits the mid-Indian Ridge.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

Gl sst mm

In the Western Pacific Ocean: Tropical Storm 14w (Wukong), located approximately 580 nm east of Misawa, Japan, is tracking north-northwestward at 14 knots.

Tropical Storm (td) 15w (Jongdari), located approximately 158 nm southwest of Iwo To, Japan, is tracking northeastward at 08 knots.

In the Eastern Pacific Ocean: Invest 91E is an area of disturbed weather in the eastern Pacific that has the potential for further tropical development.

In the Central Pacific Ocean: Invest 92L is an area of disturbed weather in the central Pacific that has the potential for further tropical development.

Invest 93L is an area of disturbed weather in the central Pacific that has the potential for further tropical development.

NewsBytes:

Georgia, Caucasus – On 5 July 2018, due to heavy rain, melting of snow and glacier in the upper part of the river Nenskra basin, a part of the mountain Khokrili (Samegrelo Zemo Svaneti Region, Georgia) collapsed, blocking the Nenskra River bed. As a result, accumulated water flooded the Nenskra valley villages. In total 1,143 people (323 families) live in Chuberi community villages. All of them were affected by the flooding.

USA – Millions of Americans on the East Coast were bracing Tuesday for more heavy rain and the risk of flash flooding — some of it “life-threatening” — as states in the West struggled with another day of record-setting heat. At least two people died Monday amid strong downpours pummeling states in the mid-Atlantic and Northeast, which turned low-lying roads into lakes and saturated the ground.

Cameroon – Local media in Cameroon are reporting of floods in parts of the country. On Tuesday, the city of Limbe in the country’s South West was hit by floods. While in Douala, the country’s largest city and economic capital located in the Littoral region, heavy rains accompanied by landslides are said to have left scores stranded. Floods continue to cause havoc across parts of Africa where high rain patterns have resulted in loss of lives and destruction to properties. The most recent was in the capital of Ivory Coast, Abidjan where government was forced to evacuate close to 200 families.

Volcanos

Roundup of Global Volcanic Activity – New Activity for the week of 18 July – 24 July 2018

Asamayama | Honshu (Japan) : JMA stated that during 16-23 July white plumes rose as high as 300 m above Asamayama’s summit crater. Weak crater incandescence was visible for the first time since 23 December 2017. The Alert Level remained at 2 (on a scale of 1-5).

Etna | Sicily (Italy) : INGV reported that during 16-22 July gas plumes rose from Etna’s summit crater; low-energy Strombolian activity also occurred from three vents at the bottom of Northeast Crater (NEC) and from two vents in Bocca Nuova. The activity was mostly confined to the craters, with material falling back into the craters, though occasionally incandescent lava was ejected about 100 m above the crater rim. The activity sometimes generated ash emissions that dissipated near the summit.

Krakatau | Indonesia : Based on satellite and wind model data, the Darwin VAAC reported that during 18-20 July ash plumes from Anak Krakatau rose to an altitude of 1.5 km (5,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted NE, E, SW, and W. The Alert Level remained at 2 (on a scale of 1-4); residents and visitors were warned not to approach the volcano within 1 km of the crater.

Nishinoshima | Japan : Based on Japan Coast Guard (JCG) observations, JMA reported that a very small eruption at Nishinoshima occurred at 1124 on 12 July, producing a brownish plume that rose from near the crater. During an aerial survey, JCG noted deposits 400 m from the vent. No thermal anomalies were detected. The report warned people to stay at least 500 m away from the crater.

Semeru | Eastern Java (Indonesia) : Based on analysis of satellite images, the Darwin VAAC reported that on 20 July a minor eruption at Semeru generated an ash plume that rose to an altitude of 4.9 km (16,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted SW.

Sierra Negra | Isla Isabela (Ecuador) : IG reported that the eruption at Sierra Negra continued through 23 July, and continued to vary in intensity. Four fissures had initially opened on 26 June, at the start of the eruption. Fissure 1 is 4 km long and located at the edge of the caldera in the area of Volcán Chico. Lava flows from this fissure traveled 7 km down the flanks, and 1.7 km within the interior of the caldera, covering an area of 16.1 square kilometers. Fissure 2 is about 250 m long, located NW of the caldera, and produced lava flows that traveled 3 km and covered an area of 2.3 square kilometers. Fissure 3, located W of the caldera, is 250 m long and produced lava flows that descended the flanks 2 km, covering an area of 0.3 square kilometers. Fissures 1-3 were active until 27 June. Fissure 4, 250 m long and located on the NW flank, continued to be active. Lava from this fissure reached the ocean between 9 and 10 July, and by 16 July had covered an area of 11.6 square kilometers (30.4 square kilometers was covered by lava from all four fissures).

Villarrica | Chile : POVI reported that sometime during mid-morning on 18 July webcam images captured two vapor-and-gas emissions with some ash rising from Villarrica. Between 1100 and 1200 that same day a thermal anomaly (the largest since December 2017) was identified in satellite images. Crater incandescence was visible later that day. An earthquake, possibly a volcano-tectonic signal, was detected at about 0627 on 20 July, a few hours after gas-and-steam emissions decreased. Crater incandescence was visible on 23 July.