Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.3 earthquake hits south of Fiji.

5.1 earthquake hits the Kermedec Islands.

5.0 earthquake hits the Philippines.

5.0 earthquake hits western Iran.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

In the Northwest Pacific Ocean: Typhoon 28w (Rai), located approximately 333 nm east-northeast of Davao, Philippines, is tracking westward at 13 knots.

In the Southern Hemisphere: Tropical cyclone 03p (Ruby), located approximately 276 nm east-southeast of Noumea, New Caledonia, is tracking southeastward at 17 knots.

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NewsBytes:

Congo – Brazzaville – At least 15 people have died, 9 are missing and thousands have been displaced after weeks of flooding in Congo-Brazzaville (also Republic of Congo). Authorities reported flooding in parts of Likouala Department from early September this year. Further heavy rain has been reported since then, intensifying from mid- to late November. In response to the disaster the government declared a state of emergency on 29 November 2021. Flooding was reported along the main rivers in the central and northern departments of Likouala, Sangha, Cuvette and Plateaux. Heavy rain also caused damage and flooding in the cities of Pointe-Noire in the south, and the capital Brazzaville.

South Sudan – Ongoing floods in South Sudan have affected more than 835,000 people across 8 states. Livelihoods, food production and drinking water supply have all been severely impacted. Humanitarian agency Concern Worldwide described the flooding as the worst in 60 years, and estimates over 200,000 people have been forced to leave their homes. Homes, nutrition and health facilities, water sources, schools and markets are submerged, impacting people’s access to essential services, eroding their coping mechanisms and exacerbating vulnerability.

Papua New Guinea – The United Nations reports that flooding from unusually high tides has affected thousands of residents in coastal areas of Papua New Guinea. Initial estimates suggest at least 7,000 people have moved for their homes as a result. Coastal flooding was reported on several South Pacific islands around the same time. Storms and high tides caused coastal flooding on several South Pacific islands from around 05 December 2021. Authorities in the Marshall Islands, Solomon Islands and Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) all reported flooding.

Global Warming

UN confirms hottest temperature ever recorded in the Arctic

The highest temperature ever recorded in the Arctic has been officially confirmed by the United Nations’ World Meteorological Organization (WMO), sounding ”alarm bells” about climate change.

The temperature, a ”Mediterranean” 100 degrees Fahrenheit (38 degrees Celsius) — which was recorded in the Siberian town of Verkhoyansk in June 2020 — was measured at the peak of an extended heat wave. In fact, temperatures across the region that summer averaged as much as 18 F (10 C) above normal, the WMO said in a statement.

The Arctic fails its annual health check

From extreme melt events to an influx of beaver colonies in Alaska, and rain falling at the summit of Greenland for the first time on record, the Arctic region showed clear symptoms of an ailing planet over the past year.

A report published on Tuesday, which serves as an annual physical for the Arctic, found this vast and significant biome is changing profoundly. It continues to warm twice as fast as the rest of the Earth and is rapidly losing ice cover, transforming from a reliably-frozen landscape to a greener and browner one than it was just around a decade ago.

The report also describes an increase in commercial activities and ships that are venturing further into the Arctic on sea routes opened up by melting ice. They bring more garbage and noise to the region, changing its soundscape and interfering with the ability of marine mammals to communicate. Retreating glaciers and melting permafrost also threaten lives, economies and infrastructure.

Disease

Covid-19

The countries with the 10 greatest number of Covid-19 cases:

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Anthrax – Zimbabwe

From the beginning of the year through November 7, health officials in Zimbabwe reported 212 human anthrax cases. No deaths have been reported.

Syphilis – Japan

The Japan National Institute of Infectious Diseases in Tokyo is now reporting 7,134 syphilis cases through December 5, the first time this has happened in decades. Tokyo (2226), Osaka (761) and Aichi (379) prefectures have reported the most cases.

Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) – UAE

A laboratory-confirmed case of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) was reported in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) recently. The case is a 60-year-old male from the Abu Dhabi region, UAE.