Archive for the ‘environment’ Category
Posted by feww on December 10, 2013
Satellites measure super chilled temp of 93.2ºC (-135.8F) in East Antarctica
Researchers using satellite data have recorded the lowest temperatures on Earth at a remote ice plateau in East Antarctica, icing over a previous record set in 1983.
The National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) found temperatures from −92 to −94ºC (−134 to −137 degrees Fahrenheit) in a 1,000-kilometer stretch on the highest section of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet.
[Editor's Note: According to several reports, the satellite sensors recorded a peak temperature of -94.7C (-135.8F) in August 2010.]
- By comparison, The lowest recorded temperature in the United States measured at −62ºC (−79.6 degrees Fahrenheit) in Alaska, in northern Asia at -68ºC (−90.4 degrees Fahrenheit), at the summit of the Greenland Ice Sheet at -75ºC (−103 degrees Fahrenheit).
- The coldest temperature recorded in the U.S. so far this year was -41ºC (minus 42 degrees Fahrenheit) set in Jordan, Montana on December 7, as Arctic weather gripped much of the United States.
- The coldest temperature detected on Earth’s Moon was -238ºC.
- CO2 turns into dry ice at −78.5ºC (−109.3ºF) at standard temperature and pressure.
The measurements were made between 2003 and 2013 by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) sensor on board the Aqua satellite and during the 2013 Southern Hemisphere winter by Landsat 8, a new satellite launched early this year by NASA and the U.S. Geological Survey, said NSIDC.
“I’ve never been in conditions that cold and I hope I never am,” said lead scientist Ted Scambos. “I am told that every breath is painful and you have to be extremely careful not to freeze part of your throat or lungs when inhaling.”
The previous record of −89.2ºC (−128.6 degrees Fahrenheit) was measured on July 21, 1983 at the Vostok Research Station in East Antarctica.
This image shows the location of record low temperature measurements for Antarctica. The red dots show where the record satellite-measured surface temperatures and the earlier record low air temperature ccurred. Shades of gray are a compilation of the lowest MODIS-sensor land surface temperature readings made by NASA’s Aqua satellite during 2003-2013, with darker grays representing the coldest areas. Landsat 8 thermal images acquired in July and August of 2013 provided more detail on the coldest areas (purple squares). Elevation of the Antarctic surface is shown in green lines, and a blue lines provide an outline of the Antarctic continent, its islands, and the edge of its floating ice sheet. —Credit: Ted Scambos, National Snow and Ice Data Center – High Resolution Image
Scambos and his team found record low temperatures in several 5 by 10 kilometer pockets where the topography forms small hollows of a few meters deep. These hollows are present near the ice ridge that runs between Dome Argus and Dome Fuji—the ice dome summits of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet.
Under clear winter skies in these areas, cold air forms near the snow surface. Because the cold air is denser than the air above it, it begins to move downhill. The air collects in the nearby hollows and chills still further, if conditions are favorable.
“The record-breaking conditions seem to happen when a wind pattern or an atmospheric pressure gradient tries to move the air back uphill, pushing against the air that was sliding down,” Scambos said. “This allows the air in the low hollows to remain there longer and cool even further under the clear, extremely dry sky conditions,” Scambos said. “When the cold air lingers in these pockets it reaches ultra-low temperatures.”
“Any gardener knows that clear skies and dry air in spring or winter lead to the coldest temperatures at night,” Scambos said. “The thing is, here in the United States and most of Canada, we don’t get a night that lasts three or four or six months long for things to really chill down under extended clear sky conditions.”
Scambos suspected they would find one area that got extremely cold. Instead they found a large strip at high altitude where several spots regularly reach record low temperatures. Furthermore, dozens of these extremely cold areas reached about the same minimum temperatures of −92 to −94 degrees Celsius (−134 to −137 degrees Fahrenheit) on most years.
“This is like saying that on the coldest day of the year a whole strip of land from International Falls, Minnesota to Duluth, Minnesota to Great Falls, Montana reached the exact same temperature, and more than once,” Scambos said. “And that’s a little odd.”
Temperature inside Super Typhoon LEKIMA
Measuring at an estimated 150ºK, the temperature of the round patch located next to the eye of Super Typhoon LEKIMA made it the coldest place on or near planet Earth on October 24, 2013.
Majestic Super Typhoon LEKIMA. SW-IR satellite image recorded at 14:30UTC on October 24, 2013. Temperature of the patch located to the right of the typhoon’s eye measures about 150ºK (minus 123ºC) making it the coldest place on or near planet Earth. Image sourced from: CIMSS/SSEC/WISC.
The Hottest Place on Earth?
Satellite sensors detected a blazing high of 70.7ºC in the Dasht-e Lut desert in southeastern Iran in 2005.
Posted in environment, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: coldest place on Earth, Dasht-e Lut, Dome Argus, Dome Fuji, East Antarctic Ice Sheet, East Antarctica, Hottest Place on Earth, NSIDC, Super Typhoon LEKIMA, Vostok Research Station | Leave a Comment »
Posted by feww on December 9, 2013
Record 25 sieverts per hour detected at Fukushima No. 1 reactor: TEPCO
Radiation was detected in an area near a steel pipe that connects reactor buildings and could kill a person in 20 minutes, if exposed, local media reported.
The highest radiation level [so far] was detected at an outdoor location at the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear reactor on Dec. 6, said Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO), the plant’s operator and the utility responsible for the clean-up of the crippled nuclear plant.
The reading of 25 sieverts per hour was taken on steel piping near an exhaust stack for the No. 1 and No. 2 reactors, TEPCO reported.
An exhaust stack sits between the No. 1 and No. 2 reactor buildings at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, March 15, 2011. Source: TEPCO handout.
In an earlier report, the utility announced high radiation levels of at least 10 sieverts per hour were found on the piping outside the reactor.
“TEPCO measured airborne radiation at eight locations around the piping to calculate surface radiation on two spots with particularly high readings, and found about 25 sieverts per hour and about 15 sieverts per hour, the company said,” local media reported.
Radioactive materials separated from melted fuel may have entered the pipes during venting shortly after the plant was “nuked” in March 2011 and remained there, said a TEPCO official.
The catastrophic mega earthquake that struck the Tōhoku region on March 11, 2011 triggered a major tsunami that inflicted massive damage along Japan’s east coast, paralyzing the Fukushima Daiichi (No. 1) nuclear plant and causing triple meltdown with large-scale radioactive fallout.
More than 400 tons of contaminated water is being produced and stored in hastily prepared, unsuitable containers at the site each day. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) proposed last week to consider dumping toxic water into the ocean.
“Regarding the growing amounts of contaminated water at the site, TEPCO should… examine all options for its further management, including the possibility of resuming controlled discharges (into the ocean) in compliance with authorized (!) limits,” said the IAEA in a statement.
Two-thirds of evacuees from Fukushima towns won’t be returning home
A survey conducted in October by Reconstruction Agency showed that 67.1 percent of respondents from Okuma and 64.7 percent from Futaba had decided not to return home. The latest figures were up from 42.3 percent and 30.4 percent, respectively from a January survey, which used slightly different wording, said Asahi-Shimbun.
The towns of Okuma and Futaba were turned into ghost town following the mass evacuations that ensued the Fukushima reactor meltdowns.
At least 73 percent of respondents from Okuma said radiation levelshad not fallen, while 68 percent of Futaba evacuees said it would take too long before they could return to their hometown.
“The survey covered the heads of 5,043 households in Okuma and of 3,394 households in Futaba,” said the report.
For earlier links, where they have not been hacked, search blog content.
Posted in environment, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2012, global disasters 2013, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: Fukushima, Fukushima Daiichi, Fukushima No. 1, Futaba, IAEA, mega earthquake, nuclear mafia, Okuma, tsunami, Tōhoku earthquake 2011 | Leave a Comment »
Posted by feww on December 6, 2013
Closed or Cancelled: Dozens of Highways, hundreds of flights and long-distance buses, thousands of schools…
Severe smog, which began engulfing northern, central and eastern regions of China on Wednesday, is forecast to persist through the weekend.
Shanghai’s PM2.5 pollution soared to 590 micrograms per cubic meter, about than 30 times the limit recommended by the World Health Organization. Xuhui District recorded pollution levels of about 602.4 micrograms per cubic meter, said Xinhua.
Shanghai (population: 25 million) is the most populated city in China and the largest city proper by population in the world.
Shanghai’s skyline Thursday morning. Severe smog has reduced visibility to dangerously low levels disrupting rail, air, water and road transportation. (source: People’s Daily Online/Wang Chu). More images…
Nanjing (population: 8.2 million), the capital of Jiangsu Province, issued a “red alert” on Wednesday after color of the sky turned mustard yellow. The PM10 pollution level was 413 (from a peak of 467) with PM2.5 at 397 (peak of 462), as of posting.
Social media users in China described the environment in deserted cities with the sky turning pale yellow as “apocalyptic,” reported Reuters.
Meantime, visibility reduced to less than 50 meters in many places, forcing highways to shut in east China’s Jiangxi Province on Thursday morning. Xinhua said its reporter had seen thousands of drivers stranded on the Changdong Highway in Nanchang (population: 5.3 million), the capital of Jiangxi Province.
“Twenty-five provincial-level regions have been suffering smoggy weather, including the cities of Hangzhou and Nanjing, according to the National Meteorological Center,” reported Xinhua.
[China has 34 provincial level divisions, classified as 22 provinces, 4 municipalities, 5 autonomous regions, 2 Special Administrative Regions, and the claimed Taiwan Province.]
In October, smog forced the shutdown of Harbin, one of northeastern China’s largest cities, as Visibility dropped to under 10 meters.
PM2.5 concentration of about 15 – 25 micrograms per cubic meter pose little or no risk, according to the World Health Organization.
Smog News Headlines
Posted in environment, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2013, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: air pollution, Air quality alert, apocalyptic environment, Beijing, China, CO, Nanjing, News Headlines, NO2, O3, PM10, PM2.5, Shanghai, Shanghai Air Pollution, smog, smog in China, SO2 | Leave a Comment »
Posted by feww on December 4, 2013
Don’t “short-circuit America’s absolute explosion in energy opportunity” —USCC President Donohue
An Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) study on fracking, due to be released in 2014, could be used to justify clamping down on the environmentally disastrous technique, which has caused a surge in U.S. oil and natural gas production, said the U.S. Chamber of Commerce (USCC) President Thomas Donohue.
“This could short-circuit America’s absolute explosion in energy opportunity that is creating millions of jobs,” he told business leaders, warning the rules were hurting the economy and “undermining freedom.”
The counter argument offered by critics of fracking, including numerous environmentalists, is that a major shift to alternative energy sources would create at least twice as many permanent jobs as the fickle fracking industry could ever offer.
Water Contamination from Shale Gas Drilling. Source. Image may be subject to copyright. “The major concern with shale gas drilling is the chemicals used in the process. Because the federal Energy Policy Act of 2005 exempted hydraulic fracturing from regulation under the Safe Drinking Water Act, shale gas drillers don’t have to disclose what chemicals they use.” Gas drilling companies maintain that the gas drilling technique they use, called hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” is safe. However, based on observation of the drinking water in numerous drilling areas, and the fate of many people who live near the drilling rigs, who are afflicted with serious health conditions, we know that fracking contaminates groundwater with dangerous chemicals.
Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, is a messy technique that involves forcing large volumes of pressurized chemical fluids and sand deep underground to crack rocks and free trapped oil and natural gas.
“Many believe it will be the rationalization of new federal fracking regulations before the end of this administration,” said Donohue, reported Reuters.
Thomas J. Donohue, president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, talks to [retired] Navy Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff during the kickoff of the Military Spouse Employment Partnership at the chamber in Washington, D.C., June 29, 2011. Public Domain Photo.
The United States Chamber of Commerce (USCC) is the largest business lobbying group in the U.S., and a major force in the national politics.
- Texas is Fracked! August 19, 2013
- Two More Quakes Strike North Texas Posted on November 29, 2013
- Significant Radioactivity, Salts, Metals Detected at Pennsylvania Fracking Site Posted on October 3, 2013
- Fracking Fluid Likely Killed Threatened Kentucky Fish: USGS Posted on August 30, 2013
- Fracking Pollutes Drinking Water Posted on May 10, 2011
- Ozone Hole, Fracking and Other Issues Posted on April 22, 2011
- Philadelphia: Public Health Prevails Over Private Wealth Posted on March 26, 2010
- Big Oil Hires Top Environmental Assassins March 26, 2010
[Search blog contents, where it hasn't been fracked (hacked), for other links on fracking.]
Posted in environment, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: censorship, climate and energy bill, energy, fracking, hydraulic fracturing, Safe Drinking Water Act, shale gas drilling, Thomas Donohue, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Water Contamination | 1 Comment »
Posted by feww on December 2, 2013
Winter 2013 could be the longest in history
BRITAIN is facing an unprecedented six month winter, with a strong probability heavy snow and sub-zero temperatures would last until May 2014, said forecasters.
A “widespread snow event” is forecast to wreak havoc on the roads and paralyze transport networks as early as next week.
Winter 2013 could be the worst in 66 years with Polar conditions lasting into May 2014. A record-breaking period of bitter Arctic winds, paralyzing snowfall and plunging temperatures is forecast to hit the entire country.
A high pressure system is drawing in freezing air from the Arctic, generating “an exceptionally prolonged period of widespread cold” in Britain that will be colder than in Iceland, Norway and Sweden and even parts of the Arctic region, forecasters said.
Heavy snow and massive drifts are forecast to cause chaos for up to six months [Image credit: APEX/ via Express UK]
“It will be accompanied by snow drifts of several feet and long-lasting snow accumulations on a widespread scale,” said a long-range forecaster at Exacta Weather.
“This period of snow and cold is likely to result in an incomparable scenario to anything we have experienced in modern times.”
“This winter could also be a carbon copy of 1947, the snowiest in history with showers in March leading to seven-meter high drifts,” said the report, “the worst winter since 1814, with continuous snowfall from January 22 to March 17.”
This winter could now parallel the worst winters ever recorded, said a forecaster for Vantage Weather Services.
“Looking back at historical data there is certainly an argument that we may well parallel with severe winters of the past including 1947 and 1962.
“We have had such a cold November, and there is no sign of any change due to a high pressure blocking system.
“When these severe temperatures bed in it becomes like an accumulative effect – like a heatwave but in reverse, we could be looking at the longest winter in history,” he said.
“And this is when you see records breaking, all signs point towards this winter being exceptionally severe, I wouldn’t put anything past it.”
An estimated 40,000 people perished in Britain due to the cold weather in 2012.
“That more people die from the cold every year in temperate Britain than in freezing Sweden is an embarrassment and a tragedy,” said a campaigner.
Related Links: Other Extremes
Posted in Climate Change, environment, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2013, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: Britain, in-between seasons, snow, snow uk, snow uk forecast, snow warning, Winter 2013, Worst Winter in History | Leave a Comment »
Posted by feww on November 29, 2013
Massive pipeline leak prompts mass evacuations in SW China
About 2,000 tons of gasoline escaped at a high-speed railway construction site after a construction tower collapsed snapping a pipeline in SW China’s Guizhou Province.
The pipeline damaged in the incident is owned by Sinopec, the country’s largest oil refiners, said a report.
“Three people have received medical treatment, and more than 110 are working to repair the broken pipe and clear the site, which is about 30 meters from the Shanghai-Kunming railway and has residential houses nearby.”
The local government has ordered mass evacuations of residents within a two kilometer radius of the incident site, and rail authorities have suspended train services.
Pipeline explosions last Friday killed 55 people and left 145 others injured, with nine additional passersby reported as missing in the coastal city of Qingdao, east China’s Shandong Province. Source: NEWS.CN. More images ...
Other Sinopec Pipeline’s Deadly Explosions
Meantime, the China PetroChemical Corporation (Sinopec) announced it had suspended two company executives following the deadly pipeline explosions last Friday
The blasts killed 55 people and left 145 others injured, with nine additional passersby reported as missing in the coastal city of Qingdao, east China’s Shandong Province.
Posted in environment, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2013, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: Deadly Explosion, Guizhou province, oil leak, oil spill, pipeline blast, pipeline leak, Shandong province, Sinopec | Leave a Comment »
Posted by feww on November 22, 2013
Central China is now in a state of almost permanent drought
No end in sight for the severe drought that has plagued central China. Image credit: gmw.com via Xinhua. More images…
China’s largest freshwater lake rapidly shrinking
Meantime, surface area of Poyang Lake, in China’s Jiangxi Province, has shrunk to less than 6 percent of its original size of more than 3,500km²
An early dry season this year, which began in mid-October, has reduced the lake into shallow streams, said a report.
China’s largest freshwater lake, Poyang Lake, is drying up, causing a severe shortage of drinking water in the region, crippling the local fishing industry and threatening the lake’s ecology. Image credit: News.com via Xinhua. More images…
The lake has been subject to prolonged dry seasons since the 1990s due to persistent droughts, and reduced water supplies from the Yangtze River due to hydroelectric dams.
Other contributing factors include increasing water use and damage to the lake bed.
The crisis has caused a severe shortage of drinking water, crippling the local fishing industry and threatening the lake’s ecology, said the report.
“Meteorological data showed the province has received 60 percent less precipitation since September than the average over the same period since records began in 1952.”
Additionally, a cluster of 29 dams erected on the upper reaches of the Yangtze river, which includes the Three Gorges Dam, store a total of up to 53 billion cubic meters of water, contributing to the death of Poyang, according to China Institute of Water Resources and Hydropower Research.
Large numbers of migrating Siberian cranes used to spend the winter on Poyang Lake.
Posted in Climate Change, environment, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2013, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: Drought, drought and deluge, drought and deluge in China, Drought in China, Jiangxi Province, lake ecology, Three Gorges Dam, Yangtze river | Leave a Comment »
Posted by feww on November 22, 2013
LANDFILLS ARE CRIMES AGAINST NATURE
Toxic fumes from landfill fire force evacuations in Canada
The landfill caught fire late Monday, and by Wednesday deteriorating conditions forced emergency officials to issue a mandatory evacuation order for nearby homes, said a report.
Emergency crews have so far been unable to control the fire at Westar Landfill, east of Medicine Hat.
“The county says there is still no viable way to extinguish it and the cause of the fire is still unknown,” said the report.
Tuxic fumes spewing from an uncontained fire at Westar Landfill, east of Medicine Hat, Alberta, Canada. Screenshot from Global News video report.
The site is reportedly used for “old construction materials like asphalt shingles, plastic insulation and siding.”
Meantime, Alberta Health Services have issues an air quality warning, as the smoke is toxic and poses a serious life safety hazard.
“Biggest thing is there’s a plume of smoke coming from the fire with very particulate matter which can get into your lungs,” said Cypress County Assistant Manager. “If you breathe enough of it, it could cause long term health impacts.”
“We were actually put on alert two days ago, and were called to respond last night to some of the people who were evacuated from the smoke,” said the Disaster Management Coordinator for the Red Cross.
The authorities anticipate the state of emergency to continue for a long time.
Read full report HERE.
Posted in environment, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: air quality warning, Alberta, Canada, Crimes against nature, Cypress County, landfill fire, Mandatory evacuation order, Medicine Hat, particulate matter, Toxic fumes, Westar Landfill | Leave a Comment »
Posted by feww on November 21, 2013
Heavy Snow Blankets NE China
Blizzard closed expressways and schools bringing traffic to a virtual standstill across northeast China’s Heilongjiang and Jilin provinces.
China’s National Meteorological Center (NMC) issued a yellow alert for blizzards Sunday morning for a second consecutive day, said Xinhua.
Blizzard buffeted NE provinces of Heilongjiang, Jilin and Liaoning, covering the ground with a 20-cm (8 in) layer of snow, the NMC said.
Heavy snow blankets NE China. Image credit: news.cn/via Xinhua.
Posted in Climate Change, environment, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: blizzard, Heilongjiang, Jilin, Liaoning, ne china blizzard, snowstorm | Leave a Comment »
Posted by feww on November 20, 2013
Death and Destruction Toll Rising in the Philippines
[1. First draft posted by MSRB on Internet on February 26, 2005]
Super Typhoon HAIYAN: Death and Destruction Toll in the Philippines
- Dead or Missing: 5,613 (official)
- Injured: 18,557 (official)
- Homeless: 4.4 million (official)
- Directly affected: More than 13 million (U.N.)
Extent of Crop Damage
“High winds, heavy rains and localized floods destroyed houses and infrastructure, including irrigation facilities, and resulted in losses of the main staple rice paddy, sugarcane and coconut crops, as well as livestock, poultry and fisheries,” said the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
HAIYAN destroyed about 153,500 hectares (ha) of rice paddy, maize and other high value crops, including 77,500 ha of rice and 21,000 ha of maize crops, it added [figures are rounded to the nearest 100.]
Philippines imports of rice are to increase by 20 percent next year to 1.2 million metric tons, said FAO.
Source: SitRep No. 30 released by Philippines National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRMC) November 20, 2013. [$1 = 43.6 Philippine pesos - FIRE-EARTH Blog]
Super Typhoon HAIYAN (locally known as YOLANDA) made its first landfall in the early morning of 8 November in Guiuan, Eastern Samar province. HAIYAN made subsequent landfalls in Tolosa south of Tacloban City, Leyte province, Daanbantayan and Bantayan Island, Cebu province, Conception, Iloilo province and Busuanga, Palawan province.
Posted in Climate Change, environment, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2013, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: Chronology of Disaster, collapse, crop damage, Extreme weather events, HAIYAN Chronology, HAIYAN Disaster UPDATE, Mega Disaster, NDRRMC, Philippine collapse, Philippine Disaster Update, SitRep No. 24, Super Typhoon HAIYAN, WE TOLD YOU SO, YOLANDA | Leave a Comment »
Posted by feww on November 15, 2013
5,843 km² of Brazil forest denuded in 12 months to July 2013
Deforestation rate in Brazil rose to 5,843 km² between August 2012 and July this year, a staggering rise of 28%, compared with the previous period, according to provisional figures released by the government.
More than 600,000 km² of Amazon rainforest have been destroyed in the past 40 years to make room for cattle ranching, farming and extensive transportation projects.
Agriculture accounts for almost 5.5% of the Brazil’s GDP, and is responsible for the majority of Brazil’s greenhouse gas emissions.
Cattle rest in deforested jungle near Maraba, in Brazil’s central state of Para, May 3, 2009. Soon thousands of cows will be chewing pasture on the freshly cleared land in Brazil’s Amazon state of Para, just a tiny part of Brazil’s 200-million-strong commercial cattle herd, the world’s biggest, that makes it a beef superpower. More than 70 million are in the Amazon area, three for every person. This is where the industry has grown fastest in recent years, a trend activists say is due to cheap land, widespread illegal clearing and weak government enforcement. REUTERS/Paulo Whitaker. Images may be subject to copyright.
Posted in Climate Change, environment, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2012, global disasters 2013, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: amazon, Amazon rainforest, cattle ranching, corn, deforestation, ethanol production, GHG, greenhouse gas emissions, maize, soybean | 1 Comment »
Posted by feww on November 4, 2013
Parasite decimates wild shrimp hauls off Georgia and South Carolina coasts
Black gill disease, caused by a tiny single-celled parasite called a ciliate, triggered a die-off of white shrimp during the August and October prime catch season off the U.S. southeast Atlantic coast, experts said.
The August haul plunged by about 75 percent from the same month last year, said Mel Bell, director of South Carolina’s Office of Fisheries Management.
In South Carolina the September catch was 44,000 pounds, less than 6 percent of the September, 2012 when shrimpers hauled in more than 750,000 pounds, said Bell.
White Shrimp – Black Gill Disease
A change in water salinity stresses the shrimp making them susceptible to being infected by the disease. The infection lowers the shrimp endurance and makes them more vulnerable to predators, said Bell.
“It’s like the shrimp are smoking three packs of cigarettes a day, and now they’re having to go run a marathon,” he said.
“Shrimpers are reporting to us that they dump the bag on the deck, and the shrimp are just dead.”
Many shrimpers fear that Georgia’s current black gill problem came from shrimp ponds in South Carolina, said Pat Mathews, owner of Lazaretto Packing Co.
“All the pond-raised shrimp have had problems with diseases and viruses,” he said. “Therefore, we need federal legislation preventing discharging these ponds into the ecosystem to prevent the spread to wild shrimp in the future.”
Georgia shrimpers are reportedly planning to petition the state for disaster status.
Shrimp are America’s most valuable and probably most popular seafood. Whole cultures and maritime communities are based solely on these crustaceans. South Carolina has two important penaeid shrimp species, brown shrimp (Farfantepenaeus aztecus) and white shrimp (Litopenaeus setiferus). A third species, the pink shrimp (Farfantepenaeus duorarum), is relatively scarce. Methods of harvest range from large commercial shrimp trawlers to cast nets and drop nets. South Carolina Department of Natural Resources- Marine Resource Division
White shrimp (Litopenaeus setiferus). The most valuable fishery in the southeastern United States is the harvest of penaeid shrimp. In South Carolina and Georgia, this fishery is comprised of two species, the white (Litopeneausset-iferus) and brown (Farfantepenaeus aztecus) shrimps, with white shrimp dominating catches. Source: DNR
Asian Farmed Shrimp
The production of Asian farmed shrimp also plunged this year after a bacterial infection decimated stock in Thailand’s ponds, said a report, resulting in shortage of imports which in turn drove prices up.
Posted in Climate Change, environment, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2013, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: Asian farmed shrimp, black gill disease, ciliate, georgia, Mass die-off, pond-raised shrimp, shrimp disaster, South Carolina, Wild Shrimp | Leave a Comment »
Posted by feww on November 2, 2013
Storm-force winds batter Britain, again
The Met Office in the UK has Issued the following Warning and Assessment for Saturday – Sunday
Westerly winds will strengthen through Saturday afternoon and into the evening, bringing gusts of 50-60 mph to many parts of the warning area, and locally around 70 mph along exposed coasts.
The public should be aware of the risk of localized disruption, particularly to travel.
Chief Forecaster’s assessment
A deep area of low pressure will track east across Ireland and southern Scotland during the course of Saturday and early Sunday, bringing a spell of windy weather to many parts of the UK.
The strongest winds are expected to affect parts of southwest England and south Wales later on Saturday afternoon and during the evening, accompanied by squally heavy showers, including the risk of hail and thunder. With many trees still in leaf, the forecast wind gusts are likely to lead to some branches and trees being brought down, whilst leading to difficult driving conditions and also affecting outdoor events such as firework displays. Large waves and over-topping are also likely along some stretches of coastline.
Large tree uprooted by storm in Pendine in Carmarthenshire. Image credit: Lewis Hancox, via Bbc
High Winds and Flood Warnings
Storm-force winds gusting up to 130 km/hr have uprooted numerous trees, blocking roads and causing difficult driving conditions in Wales, said a report.
Natural Resources Wales (NRW) has issued 10 flood warnings are for the coastal areas, with concerns over high tides.
High winds have knocked out power to thousands of homes in SW Britain.
High Winds Knock Out Power to Thousands in the U.S., Canada
Meantime, back in the U.S., high winds from Halloween Storm have knocked out power to tens of thousands of customers across a vast region including parts of Ohio and West Virginia.
In Canada, near hurricane force winds knocked out power to hundreds of thousands of Quebec residences on Friday.
Environment Canada issued a wind warning early Friday as storms uprooted trees, shattered windows, tore roofs off buildings and left more than 350,000 customers without power.
“Just north of Montreal, the Centre Laval shopping mall was evacuated Friday afternoon after severe weather sent scaffolding crashing into the building, severing a gas line in the process,” said a report.
Posted in Climate Change, environment, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2013, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: Britain, Flood warning, Montreal, Quebec storm, St. Jude, storm, Storm St Jude, wales, weather Warning | Leave a Comment »
Posted by feww on November 2, 2013
Submitted by a member
What’s wrong with that!???
FACT SHEET: The White House, November 1, 2013
Executive Order on Climate Preparedness
President Obama Establishes a Task Force on Climate
“We’re going to need to get prepared. And that’s why this plan will also protect critical sectors of our economy and prepare the United States for the impacts of climate change that we cannot avoid. States and cities across the country are already taking it upon themselves to get ready… And we’ll partner with communities seeking help to prepare for droughts and floods, reduce the risk of wildfires, protect the dunes and wetlands that pull double duty as green space and as natural storm barriers.” – President Barack Obama, June 25, 2013
Really, what’s wrong with that???
Paying Lip Service to Environmental Preservation
On Friday, President Obama established a Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience to advise the Administration on how the Federal Government can respond to the needs of communities nationwide that are dealing with the impacts of climate change. The Task Force members include state, local and tribal leaders from across the country who will use their first-hand experiences in building climate preparedness and resilience in their communities to inform their recommendations to the Administration.
The President signed an Executive Order that directs Federal agencies to take a series of steps to make it easier for American communities to strengthen their resilience to extreme weather and prepare for other impacts of climate change.
Well, nothing is wrong with that, really, except that it’s a little too late, lacks concrete action, and relies on the very systems that have driven life on this planet to the precipice of collapse.
The window of opportunity closed a long while back, and all that anyone can do now is a meaningful prayer for the dead, in Latin.
President Obama has said that we have a moral obligation to our children and future generations to leave them a planet that is not polluted or damaged.
A planet that is not polluted or damaged?
Is there a time-machine involved here? Because for a meaningful grasp of the above you need to travel back, way back, in time.
Building climate preparedness and resilience in our communities amid exponentially deteriorating climatic conditions and imminently collapsing ecosystems is one thing (!), leaving behind “a planet that is not polluted or damaged” to our grown-up kids, let alone future generations, is an entirely different matter.
Posted in Climate Change, environment, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2013, significant events | Tagged: Climate Action Plan, climate preparedness, Collapsing Riverbank, Executive Order on Climate Preparedness, extreme weather, impacts of climate change, President Barack Obama, Task Force on Climate, window of opportunity | 2 Comments »
Posted by feww on October 31, 2013
Twenty out of 24 of Cambodia’s provinces affected by floods and flash floods since September 2013
Floods have killed at least 188 people including 88 children in the past six weeks, according to officials
Floodwaters have affected 1,736,000 people in more than 377,000 households, forcing 144,000 people in more than 31,000 households to flee their collapsing homes.
Flood Map of Cambodia
Floodwaters have severely damaged more than 230,000 houses, 1,242 schools, 78 health centers and hospitals, and destroyed or damaged numerous pagoda, roads, bridges and other infrastructure.
Floods have affected the population, particularly with food and non-food items (NFI) distributions, and in the areas of water, sanitation and hygiene, shelter, health, education and protection, said UN OCHA.
Posted in Climate Change, environment, global deluge, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2013, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: Cambodia, crop damage, Flood death toll, flood Map of Cambodia | Leave a Comment »
Posted by feww on October 28, 2013
Beijing entombed by mega smog, AGAIN
The Beijing Weather Station issued a “yellow haze alert,” the country’s third highest alert level, warning of serious air pollution and very low visibility on Monday, October 28, 2013.
Beijing’s air quality remained at “Hazardous” level with the pollution index climbing to 424 on Monday at 21:00 local time.
[Hazardous Air Pollution - Mandatory Health Alert: Everyone may experience more serious health effects]
Beijing’s air quality index (AQI) climbed to 424 on Monday at 21:00. In several other populous municipalities the index climbed to as high as 824. Source: http://aqicn.org/
Dense smog fills the daytime air in Chang’an Avenue, downtown Beijing, China, October 28, 2013. (Source: news.xinhuanet.com/CFP).
Posted in environment, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2013, health, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: air pollution, AQI, Beijing, China, Hazardous Air Pollution, high-smog season, India, Mandatory Health Alert, mega smog, smog | Leave a Comment »
Posted by feww on October 24, 2013
Vancouver resembles vampire movie scenes
Heavy fog entombs Vancouver, Canada, Oct. 23, 2013. Fog has blanketed B.C.’s south coast for more than a week due to a persisting ridge of high pressure, forcing flight and ferry cancellations, and causing numerous traffic accidents. (Image credit: Xinhua/Liang Sen). More images…
Posted in environment, Global Disaster watch, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: British Columbia, Canada, traffic accidents, Vampire Movie, Vancouver | Leave a Comment »
Posted by feww on October 24, 2013
Pesticides sold by Monsanto poisoning Argentina: AP
The Associated Press (AP) has documented dozens of cases around Argentina where widespread misuse of Monsanto’s products are causing major health problems.
Toxic pesticides were sprayed close to populated areas and close to the water supply; farmers mix and apply poisons without protective clothing; villagers store water in pesticide containers.
In Santa Fe Province [population: 3.2 million, 3rd most populated province,] Argentina’s number one producer of cereals, toxic chemicals were used about 30 meters from homes, instead of the mandatory 500 meters, according to the AP report.
Unsurprisingly, cancer rates in the province are up to four times higher than the national average. In the neighboring Chaco province [population 1.2 million,] birth defects quadrupled since the mid 1990s when Monsanto convinced the Argentines that its patented seeds and agrochemicals would sharply increase crop yields and lower pesticide use, thus dramatically transforming farming in Argentina.
Health authorities are now warning that growing health problems among nearly a third of the country’s 41 million population may be due to uncontrolled use of pesticides.
Today, all of Argentina’s soy crop and most of its corn and cotton are genetically modified.
“The change in how agriculture is produced has brought, frankly, a change in the profile of diseases,” says Dr. Medardo Avila Vazquez, a pediatrician and neonatologist who co-founded Doctors of Fumigated Towns, part of a growing movement demanding enforcement of agricultural safety rules. “We’ve gone from a pretty healthy population to one with a high rate of cancer, birth defects, and illnesses seldom seen before.”
Farmers in Argentina use about 320 million liters of agrochemicals last year, applying about 5 kg of pesticide per hectare (4.3lbs. per acres), or more than twice the amount used in the U.S., to boost production, as pests become ever more resistant to the poisons.
“As we’ve also learned in the United States, herbicide-resistant GE crops lead to dramatically increased pesticide use. And as weeds develop resistance to these chemicals, industry rolls out even more hazardous chemicals to battle the superweeds. Farmers get trapped on the pesticide treadmill.” Pesticide Action Network International told AP.
- Total agricultural land in Argentina is 1,333,500km², or 48.0 % of the area.
- Argentina’s soy planting area is a projected at 20.65 million hectares for the current 2013/14 season, with corn at 5.7 million hectares, and wheat 3.4 million hectares.
Posted in disaster diary, disaster watch, disaster zone, disasters, environment, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2013, health, significant events | Tagged: agrochemical, AP, argentina, Chaco, corn, Doctors of Fumigated Towns, GMO market, Monsanto, Pesticide Action Network, pesticides, Santa Fe Province, soy, soy crop, superweeds | 1 Comment »
Posted by feww on October 22, 2013
The Elusive and the Surreal in China
Heavy smog continued to choke northeast China, forcing the closure of schools, highways, rail and bus services, airports…
Harbin city bus terminal 8:00am Tuesday, October 22, 2013. [Original Title: "Heavy smog envelops NE China's cities for 4th day"] Photo credit: dbw.cn/ via Xinhua. More images…
Posted in environment, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2013, health, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: air pollution, air pollution in China, air quality, air-quality index, China, China air pollution, Harbin, Heilongjiang, Jilin, particulate matter, PM2.5, Red Alert, smog alert | Leave a Comment »
Posted by feww on October 21, 2013
Hazardous smog brings Harbin to a halt
Harbin city, the capital of northeastern Heilongjiang province, and one of northeastern China’s largest cities with a population of more than 11 million, came to a standing still amid choking smog for a 2nd consecutive day.
Schools were forced to suspended classes, many bus routes were cancelled, traffic came to a standstill, all highways in Heilongjiang were shut down and and Taiping International Airport was closed due to poor visibility, as the air pollution level zoomed off the chart, topping the 1,000 mark in parts of the city.
A level above 300 for PM2.5 particulate matter is considered hazardous, everyone may experience more serious health effects, and authorities are required to issue a “health alert.” The World Health Organization recommends a daily level of less than 20.
Hazardous smog chokes Harbin city, the capital of northeastern China’s Heilongjiang province for a 2nd consecutive day on Monday, October 21, 2013. Photo credit: Xinhua
Meteorological authorities in Heilongjiang, Jilin and Liaoning provinces issued a “red alert” due to dense smog, warning that the smog will worsen in Harbin, Yichun, Daqing, Suihua, Jiamusi and Qitaihe cities in Heilongjiang with visibility forecast at less than 100 meters over the next 24 hours, Xinhua reported.
Severe smog was also reported in Tangshan, east of Beijing, and Changchun, the capital of Jilin province.
- Highways were closed and flights disrupted in Jilin and Liaoning provinces.
- Train services were delayed and most of the highways in Jilin were forced to close.
“The building 50 meters away cannot be seen clearly. I smelt [Nauseous ] coal smoke when I opened the window of my house,” said a resident in Changchun, provincial capital of Jilin.
“With visibility of less than 100 meters, all 22 flights in Changchun Longjia Airport were delayed due to the foggy weather. Visibility was less than 500 meters in most of Jilin.”
The massive temperature difference between day and night was responsible for the fog, and the start of the winter heating season reportedly created the massive smog in NE China, meteorologists said.
Heavy smog plagued most parts of north China on October 7, 2013
BEIJING, Oct. 7 (Xinhuanet) — The coming typhoon isn’t the only weather trouble in China. It’s also not a good day to be out in the country’s north.
Air pollution is through the roof, reaching level five – the most severe in the tiered-system – in central and southern Hebei province. While in neighbouring Shanxi Province, pollutant levels are just one notch down. Weather authorities have issued a yellow warning for the heavy smog, as it also plagues other parts like Beijing, Tianjin and Henan.
This year, the thick and hazardous smog has affected 17 provinces and municipalities. Facing this lingering crisis, China plans to build a nation-wide network within three to five years to monitor the impact of air pollution on health.
Posted in environment, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2013, health, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: air pollution, air pollution in China, air quality, air-quality index, China, Harbin, Heilongjiang, Jilin, particulate matter, PM2.5, smog alert | 2 Comments »
Posted by feww on October 4, 2013
Beijing Air Pollution Shoots off the Chart, AGAIN
Beijing Air Pollution: Real-time Air Quality Index (AQI). Source: aqicn.org
AQI in Beijing Municipality and Surrounding Areas
Air pollution in Beijing Municipality and surrounding areas @ 21:00 local time on October 4, 2013. Source: aqicn.org
Posted in disaster diary, disaster watch, disaster watch 2013, disaster zone, disasters, environment, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2013 | Tagged: air pollution, Air quality alert, Beijing, Beijing AQI, Breathtaking Beijing, China, CO, NO2, O3, PM10, PM2.5, SO2 | Leave a Comment »
Posted by feww on October 3, 2013
Fracking Wastewater Irradiated and Contaminated Pennsylvania River
Duke University researchers have detected elevated levels of radioactivity, heavy metals and salts in the western Pennsylvanian Blacklick Creek that the Josephine Brine Treatment Facility uses to discharge treated wastewater from hydrolic fracking.
“Years of disposal of oil and gas wastewater with high radioactivity has created potential environmental risks for thousands of years to come.” —Avner Vengosh, professor of geochemistry and water quality at Duke University’s Nicholas School of the Environment.
A glass of water taken from a residential well after the start of natural gas drilling in Dimock, Pennsylvania, March 7, 2009. Dimock is one of hundreds of sites in Pennsylvania where energy companies are now racing to tap the massive Marcellus Shale natural gas formation. But some residents say the drilling has clouded their drinking water, sickened people and animals and made their wells flammable. REUTERS/Tim Shaffer. Image may be subject to copyright.
The following is mirrored from The Nicholas School of the Environment at Duke University website.
Radioactive Shale Gas Contaminants Found at Wastewater Discharge Site
DURHAM, N.C. [October 02, 2013] — Elevated levels of radioactivity, salts and metals have been found in river water and sediments at a site where treated water from oil and gas operations is discharged into a western Pennsylvania creek.
“Radium levels were about 200 times greater in sediment samples collected where the Josephine Brine Treatment Facility discharges its treated wastewater into Blacklick Creek than in sediment samples collected just upstream of the plant,” said Avner Vengosh, professor of geochemistry and water quality at Duke University’s Nicholas School of the Environment.
The new Duke study examined the quality of shale gas wastewater from hydraulic fracturing and the stream water above and below the disposal site. The study found that some of the discharged effluent is derived from the Marcellus shale gas flowback water, which is naturally high in salinity and radioactivity.
High concentrations of some salts and metals were also observed in the stream water. “The treatment removes a substantial portion of the radioactivity, but it does not remove many of the other salts, including bromide,” Vengosh said. “When the high-bromide effluents are discharged to the stream, it increases the concentrations of bromide above the original background levels. This is significant because bromide increases the risks for formation of highly toxic disinfection byproducts in drinking water treatment facilities that are located downstream.”
“The radioactivity levels we found in sediments near the outflow are above management regulations in the U.S. and would only be accepted at a licensed radioactive disposal facility,” said Robert B. Jackson, professor of environmental science at Duke. “The facility is quite effective in removing metals such as barium from the water but concentrates sulfates, chlorides and bromides. In fact this single facility contributes four-fifths of the total downstream chloride flow at this point.”
The Duke team also analyzed stream-bottom sediments for radium isotopes that are typically found in Marcellus wastewater. “Although the facility’s treatment process significantly reduced radium and barium levels in the wastewater, the amount of radioactivity that has accumulated in the river sediments still exceeds thresholds for safe disposal of radioactive materials,” Vengosh said. “Years of disposal of oil and gas wastewater with high radioactivity has created potential environmental risks for thousands of years to come.”
“While water contamination can be mitigated by treatment to a certain degree, our findings indicate that disposal of wastewater from both conventional and unconventional oil and gas operations has degraded the surface water and sediments,” said Nathaniel R. Warner, a recent Ph.D. graduate of Duke who is now a postdoctoral researcher at Dartmouth College. “This could be a long-term legacy of radioactivity.”
Industry has made efforts to reuse or to transport shale gas wastewater to deep injection wells, but wastewater is still discharged to the environment in some states. “It is clear that this practice of releasing wastewater without adequate treatment should be stopped in order to protect freshwater resources in areas of oil and gas development,” Vengosh said.
The Duke team published their findings Oct. 2 in the peer-reviewed journal Environmental Science & Technology.
The Josephine Brine Treatment Facility is located in Indiana County, about an hour east of Pittsburgh. Blacklick Creek is a tributary of the Conemaugh River, which flows into the Allegheny River, a water source for numerous western Pennsylvania cities, including Pittsburgh.
Cidney A. Christie, who graduated from Duke’s Nicholas School in 2013 with a Master of Environment Management degree, coauthored the new study, which was funded by the Nicholas School and the Park Foundation.
“Impacts of Shale Gas Wastewater Disposal on Water Quality in Western Pennsylvania”
Nathaniel R. Warner, Cidney A. Christie, Robert B. Jackson, Avner Vengosh
Published Oct. 3 in Environmental Science & Technology – DOI: 10.1021/es402165b
Map Of Shale Gas Basins In The United States. Click image to enlarge.
Posted in environment, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2013, health | Tagged: Allegheny River, Avner Vengosh, Blacklick Creek, Conemaugh River, Duke University, environmental health, fracking, hydraulic fracturing, Josephine Brine Treatment Facility, Nicholas School, Pittsburgh, Radioactive pollution, Science & Technology, Wastewater Discharge | Leave a Comment »