Archive | January 10, 2014

Quote of the week – climate induced ‘extreme weather’ has long been a concern of climate scientists

Residents Flee Amid Fear Of Mount Sinabung Volcano Eruption – In Pictures

As the Indonesian governement raises the danger alert to its highest level, more than 20,000 residents living near the Mount Sinabung volcano are evacuated to temporary emergency centres
Mount Sinabung volcano: ash and lava during an eruption near from Karo, North Sumatra
Mount Sinabung volcano: Villagers Panic As Mount Sinabung's Volcanic Ash Reaches Their Homes
Mount Sinabung volcano: Villagers Evacuated As Mount Sinabung Eruptions Continue
Mount Sinabung volcano: Villagers Evacuated As Mount Sinabung Eruptions Continue
Mount Sinabung volcano: olcanic ash and lava near Karo, North Sumatra

First North American Death From Bird Flu… Fatal Pig Virus Now Affects 22 States
Bird Flu

The first fatal case of bird flu in North America has been reported in Canada.

Officials in Canada said the victim, who was from Alberta, had just returned from Beijing.

The unnamed victim, who was not identified, died on January 3, having been admitted to hospital on Jan 1.

Frigid temperatures across a large swath of the United States this week followed by warmer conditions could aid the spread of a fatal pig disease now in 22 states, affecting hundreds of thousands of pigs, a swine veterinarian said on Thursday.

“The virus likes cold, wet and cloudy days,” said Rodney Baker, a swine veterinarian at Iowa State University at Ames, Iowa, the top pork producing state in the United States.

West Virginia Chemical Spill Emergency Declared

A growing number of people in West Virginia have been told not to drink, wash or cook using tap water after an industrial leak

West Virginia chemical spill

President Obama is sending federal disaster aid to West Virginia, where up to 300,000 people are banned from using tap water following a chemical spill.

The leak into a Charleston river has also forced schools, bars and restaurants to close.

“The President today declared an emergency exists in the State of West Virginia and ordered federal aid to supplement state and local response efforts,” said an administration statement on Friday morning.

The state’s governor has declared a state of emergency in nine counties following the industrial leak, leading to queues for bottled water.

Residents in a growing number of affected areas have been told not to drink, wash or cook with the tap water and only use it for flushing toilets.

West Virginia chemical spill

Laura Jordan, external affairs manager for West Virginia American Water, said: “It could be potentially harmful if swallowed and could potentially cause skin and eye irritation.”

The spill of of 4-Methylcyclohexane Methanol, a chemical used in the coal industry, into the Elk River happened above a water treatment plant in Charleston – the largest in West Virginia – and affects 100,000 homes and businesses.

In a statement, Governor Earl Ray Tomblin said: “West Virginians in the affected service areas are urged not to use tap water for drinking, cooking, washing or bathing.

“Right now, our priorities are our hospitals, nursing homes, and schools.”

West Virginia chemical spill

Mr Tomblin said his office was working with the National Guard and the state’s Office of Emergency Services to provide water supplies as quickly as possible.

According to West Virginia American Water, the pollution came from a Charleston firm, Freedom Industries.

Authorities were alerted by reports of an odour, described as being like black liquorice, and officials found a leaking storage unit at the site.

Tests are being conducted on the water.

No one at Freedom Industries was immediately available for comment.

On its website, the company describes itself as a producer of specialty chemicals for the mining, steel and cement industries.

There have been no immediate reports of illnesses from the spill.


Subject To Change

Depth: 10 km

Distances: 28km (17mi) NW of Kish, Iran
103km (64mi) SSW of Gerash, Iran
104km (65mi) WNW of Bandar-e Lengeh, Iran
112km (70mi) SSW of Lar, Iran
259km (161mi) NNW of Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

Global view


Subject To Change

Depth: 223 km

Distances: 1199 km S of Nuku‘alofa, Tonga / pop: 22,400 / local time: 15:22:57.0 2014-01-10
763 km NE of Whangarei, New Zealand / pop: 50,900 / local time: 15:22:57.0 2014-01-10

Global viewRegional view



Subject To Change

Depth: 400 km

Distances: 255 km W of Nuku‘alofa, Tonga / pop: 22,400 / local time: 14:32:30.0 2014-01-10
498 km SE of Suva, Fiji / pop: 77,366 / local time: 13:32:30.0 2014-01-10
970 km SW of Apia, Samoa / pop: 40,407 / local time: 14:32:30.0 2014-01-09

Global viewRegional view



Subject To Change

Depth: 80 km

Distances: 170 km N of Baku, Azerbaijan / pop: 1,116,513 / local time: 04:45:31.0 2014-01-10
151 km NE of Shamakhi, Azerbaijan / pop: 29,403 / local time: 04:45:31.0 2014-01-10
66 km NE of Xudat, Azerbaijan / pop: 13,625 / local time: 04:45:31.0 2014-01-10

Global viewRegional view


Heatwave Kills Over 100,000 Bats In Queensland, Australia
flying fox bat

Over 100,000 rotting bat corpses are believed to be covering southern Queensland following a heatwave that killed colonies across the area.

The RSPCA in Queensland said there were mass deaths at 25 different colonies across the state after temperatures plateaued around the mid-40s for several days.

Areas where bat deaths were reported include Mt Ommaney, Redbank, Boonah, Palmwoods, Laidley and Gatton, Australia’s ABC News reports.

Michael Beatty, spokesman for the RSPCA, said: “The heatwave was basically a catastrophe for all the bat colonies in south-east Queensland.

“That’s obviously going to have a pretty disturbing impact on those colonies and those colonies are vital to our ecosystem.”

Locals in the Scenic Rim Regional Council, west of Brisbane, organised rubbish collectors to help clear the carcasses, while residents near Boonah’s Athol Terrace said the smell of the dead animals had been with them for days.


One man, Murray Paas, from Dayboro filmed over 1,000 dead bats in his back garden: “More dead in the trees, waiting to fall,” he said. “The council is on the way to start the clean-up. I’ve been instructed not to touch them.”

Hundreds of bats are also lying in trees and bushes and are being eaten by maggots. However, councils have advised locals they will not be clearing the carcasses from bushland.

Sammy Ringer, from Bat Rescue, reiterated advise issued by Queensland’s Health Authority, which told people not to touch the bats: “Don’t touch them, they’re stressed. If they do bite or scratch you and break the skin you can get a vaccination, you can get a shot for the lyssavirus.”

Dr Jeanette Young, the state’s chief health officer, also told APN: “Some bats may appear dead but they are not and when people have attempted to remove them they have been bitten or scratched. Bats also have a claw on their wings which is a frequent cause of injury.”

Small Plane Makes Emergency Landing In Field In Odessa, Texas, USA

A single occupant plane had to make an emergency landing earlier Wednesday evening.
Authorities say the unregistered ultralight plane lost engine power while in the air.
According to authorities, the pilot said he tried to restart the engine while at about 4,000 feet, but it wouldn’t start.
He was unable to make it back to Schlemeyer to land, so he landed the plane in the field.
No one was injured and the damage to the craft is minor.