Fire Earth

Earth is fighting to stay alive. Mass dieoffs, triggered by anthropogenic assault and fallout of planetary defense systems offsetting the impact, could begin anytime!

Archive for May 11th, 2010

Pollution Kills, OK?

Posted by feww on May 11, 2010

Growing evidence pollution causes heart attacks, strokes

Burning fossil fuels like oil, coal, gasoline and natural gas produces fine particulate matter, which damages heart and causes stroke, American Heart Association says.

Smog! Source EPA Report: Smog—Who Does It Hurt?

The following is a public information release by American Heart Association:

Evidence growing of air pollution’s link to heart disease, death

The scientific evidence linking air pollution to heart attacks, strokes and cardiovascular death has “substantially strengthened,” and people, particularly those at high cardiovascular risk, should limit their exposure, according to an updated American Heart Association scientific statement.

The evidence is strongest for fine particulate matter (PM2.5) having a causal relationship to cardiovascular disease, said the expert panel of authors who updated the association’s 2004 initial statement on air pollution, also published in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.

The major source of PM2.5 is fossil fuel combustion from industry, traffic, and power generation. Biomass burning, heating, cooking, indoor activities and forest fires may also be relevant sources, particularly in certain regions.

“Particulate matter appears to directly increase risk by triggering events in susceptible individuals within hours to days of an increased level of exposure, even among those who otherwise may have been healthy for years,” said Robert D. Brook, M.D., lead author of the statement, which was written after review of epidemiological, molecular and toxicological studies published during the past six years.

Motor vehicles are a major source of ground level ozone and smog.

“Growing evidence also shows that longer-term PM2.5 exposures, such as over a few years, can lead to an even larger increase in these health risks. In this context, the American Heart Association said that PM2.5 should be recognized as a ‘modifiable factor’ that contributes to cardiovascular morbidity and mortality.”

In the statement, the panel also concluded that there’s a:

  • “small yet consistent” association between short-term exposure to air pollution and premature death;
  • strong level of evidence supporting a relationship between air pollution and ischemic heart disease;
  • “moderate, yet growing link” between air pollution and heart failure and ischemic stroke;
  • “modest” level of evidence supporting an association between air pollution and peripheral vascular diseases, irregular heartbeats and cardiac arrest.

The elderly and those with existing heart diseases, such as heart failure or coronary artery disease, and perhaps those with diabetes appear to be at higher risk from short-term PM2.5 exposure.

“The foremost message for these high-risk groups remains that they should work to control their modifiable traditional risk factors – blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes, smoking,” said Brook, a cardiovascular medicine specialist and associate professor in the Department of Internal Medicine at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.

There are several ways by which PM2.5 could affect the cardiovascular system; however, one leading explanation suggests that several components of PM2.5, once inhaled, can cause inflammation and irritate nerves in the lungs. These responses can start a cascade of changes that adversely affect the rest of the body, Brook said.

Ozone can inflame the lung’s lining, and repeated episodes of inflammation may cause permanent changes in the lung. (Left) A healthy lung airway and,  (right) an inflamed lung airway.
Source EPA.

“It’s possible that certain very small particles, or chemicals that travel with them, may reach the circulation and cause direct harm,” Brook said. “The lung nerve-fiber irritation can also disrupt the balance of the nervous system throughout the body. These responses can increase blood clotting and thrombosis, impair vascular function and blood flow, elevate blood pressure, and disrupt proper cardiac electrical activity which may ultimately provoke heart attacks, strokes, or even death.

“These studies also indicate that there is no ‘safe’ level of PM2.5 exposure,” he said.

Recommendations include:

  • Physicians should emphasize treatment of traditional cardiovascular risk factors, which may lessen patients’ susceptibility to air pollution.
  • All patients with cardiovascular disease should be educated about the risks of air pollution.
  • Healthcare professionals should consider educating patients without cardiovascular disease but who are at high risk, such as the elderly, individuals with metabolic syndrome or multiple risk factors and those with diabetes.
  • Based on air pollution levels, as forecasted by the Air Quality Index available in many media sources, recommendations for methods to reduce exposure and limit activity should be followed depending on the patient’s level of risk.

Reducing exposure to air pollution takes effort at the population level by implementing national policies as well as at the individual level, Brook said. “People can limit their exposure as much as possible by decreasing their time outside when particle levels are high and reducing time spent in traffic – a common source of exposure in today’s world.”


Editor’s Notes:

Related Link:

Serial No 1,710. Starting April 2010, each entry on this blog has a unique serial number. If any of the numbers are missing, it may mean that the corresponding entry has been blocked by Google/the authorities in your country. Please drop us a line if you detect any anomaly/missing number(s).

Posted in Burning fossil fuels, cardiovascular death, environment, fossil fuel combustion, PM2.5 | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Gulf Oil Spill Disaster – Expecting Different Results

Posted by feww on May 11, 2010

Doing the Same thing Over and Expecting Different Results?

BP Keen to Be Seen Doing Something, Regardless of End Result

BP executives and their counterparts from Transocean Ltd and Halliburton Co, will appear before Senate panels investigating the disaster. It’s not known whether DOI and MMS personnel as well as certain senators and congressmen who rubber stamped BP drilling  would ever be questioned.

The session, at any rate, is expected to be highly theatrical, staged to appease the people.

A euphemistic, watered-down 72-Hour Trajectory Map of the Oil Spill in the Gulf? Is it our imagination, or NOAA making the maps look less life-threatening? Click image to enlarge.

Small “top hat”

BP says it aims to lower a small “top hat” dome, the size of an oil barrel, over the leak and siphon up the oil from the leak to a tanker 1.5km (~ 1 mile) above the sea floor.  The original massive metal box, the “big top hat” was too big and that’s why it failed to work.

“There will be less seawater in the smaller dome and therefore less likelihood of hydrate formation,” BP CEO, Tony Hayward, told reporters at in Houston.

Fire-Earth says unless the “top hat” can couple [leech] onto the point(s) at which the leaks are occurring , so as to prevent any build up of crystallized gas hydrates in the vicinity, it’s unlikely to work, and could run into all kinds of additional complication.

In other words, for any “solution” to work, it should be able to siphon up more than 95 percent of the oil that is being leaked, or it’s unlikely to succeed. 

Pointing the Finger of blame

A BP executive is blaming Transocean for the blowout because the blowout preventer, designed to prevent the an oil leak, failed to work.

Transocean in turn is blaming Haliburton,  a third company involved. It says the blowout preventer did not cause the leak, but two other failures occurred, the well’s  cover and the cement that was used to seal it.

Halliburton had reportedly finished cementing the well-cover less than a day before the explosion occurred, which also killed 11 people, the said BP executives says in a written testimony to the Senate investigating panel.

What about other deepwater drilling in the Gulf?

Meanwhile federal inspectors completed examining 30 deepwater drilling rigs prospecting for oil in the Gulf of Mexico, but reported no safety problems, Reuters said.

“Throughout our inspections, no deepwater facilities have been shut-in due to safety concerns,” said John Romero, spokesman for Minerals Management Service (MMS), the Department of Interior branch responsible [sic] for offshore drilling safety .

Romero told Reuters that his department at MMS  will soon begin inspecting 47 deepwater production platforms that are already pumping crude oil commercially.

“These inspections may take up to a month to complete,” he said.

Dispersant Sink

There’s now nearly as much dispersant sprayed over the Gulf of Mexico as that awful orange-colored fire retardant chemical over the state of California. The problem is the dispersant used in the Gulf is even deadlier than the fire-retardant.

A U.S. Air Force chemical dispersing C-130 aircraft drops an oil dispersing chemical into the Gulf of Mexico as part of the Deepwater Horizon Response effort, May 5, 2010. U.S. Air Force Photo by Tech. Sgt. Adrian Cadiz.

Recent Documents

Related links:

Serial No 1,709. Starting April 2010, each entry on this blog has a unique serial number. If any of the numbers are missing, it may mean that the corresponding entry has been blocked by Google/the authorities in your country. Please drop us a line if you detect any anomaly/missing number(s).

Posted in Deepwater Horizon, environment, gulf of mexico, gulf of mexico oil leak, Gulf of Mexico oil Spill | Tagged: , , , , | 3 Comments »

Diabolical World Govt Fails to Secure Biodiversity

Posted by feww on May 11, 2010

Ecosystems and species driven ever closer to collapse

World governments, or World Government to be precise, have failed to meet a 2010 target to stop loss of biodiversity, and its NOT interested to do what is needed to preserve the species and ecosystems without which humans and other animals cannot survive,  a UN  report said [the wording is that of Fire-Earth.]

The mounting pressures on biodiversity risks pushing some ecosystems into new states, with severe ramifications for human wellbeing as tipping points are crossed. While the precise location of tipping points is difficult to determine, once an ecosystem moves into a new state it can be very difficult, if not impossible, to return it to its former state. Source: Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity

The following are excerpts and extracts from the UN report:

Extinction Risk

Species which have been assessed for extinction risk are on average moving closer to extinction. Amphibians face the greatest risk and coral species are deteriorating most rapidly in status. Nearly a quarter of plant species are estimated to be threatened with extinction.

Abundance of Vertebrate Species

The abundance of vertebrate species, based on assessed populations, fell by nearly a third on average between 1970 and 2006, and continues to fall globally, with especially severe declines in the tropics and among freshwater species.

Extensive Fragmentation and Degradation

Extensive fragmentation and degradation of forests, rivers and other ecosystems have also led to loss of biodiversity and ecosystem services.

Crop and Livestock Genetic Diversity

Crop and livestock genetic diversity continues to decline in agricultural systems.

The Five Principal Pressures

The five principal pressures directly driving biodiversity loss (habitat change, overexploitation, pollution, invasive alien species and climate change) are either constant or increasing in intensity.

Humans’ Ecological Footprint

The ecological footprint of humanity exceeds the biological capacity of the Earth by a wider margin than at the time the 2010 target was agreed.

Human Impact Visuals [Click images to enlarge.]

The following images were sourced from the UN report:

Kennecott Utah Copper’s Bingham Canyon Mine is the world’s largest man-made excavation. It is almost 4.5km across and more than 1km deep. [Like Mountaintop Removal] TR Open pit mining has been an important cause of habitat destruction in some regions. It is the type of activity increasingly subjected to environmental impact assessment. The Convention on Biological Diversity recently agreed voluntary guidelines on the inclusion of biodiversity factors in such assessments. Click images to enlarge.

Coastal Wetlands – Before and After.

Glaciers – Before and After

Tropical Coral Reef – Before and After

Eutrophication – Before and After

Related Links:

Serial No 1,708. Starting April 2010, each entry on this blog has a unique serial number. If any of the numbers are missing, it may mean that the corresponding entry has been blocked by Google/the authorities in your country. Please drop us a line if you detect any anomaly/missing number(s).

Posted in ecological collapse, Ecological footprint, environment, Extinction Risk, overexploitation | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Week’s Most Tragic, Unusual and Mysterious Disasters

Posted by feww on May 11, 2010

Death in the Peruvian Andes

Freezing temperatures have killed at least 190 people in the Peruvian Andes provinces of Cuzco Pasco and Puno since January 2010, the Ministry of Health data shows. Some 95 of the victims were children younger than 5,  with 42  of them claimed by pneumonia, a report said.

Dust storm in India

On May 7, 2010 a dust storm and squall struck two Indian states of Uttar Pradesh (pop. 192 million) and Bihar (pop. 85 million) killing at least 57.

Strong winds were followed by a line of thunderstorm which brought heavy rains  caused widespread damages to buildings, uprooted trees, fell power lines  and destroyed crops, a report said.

Mystery Deaths in New Zealand

Young Jin Baek, 44, South Korean husband and father traveled to New Zealand on May 7, to collect the bodies of his wife and two teenage daughters, who were killed in “mysterious circumstances.”  On May 9 he, too, was found dead. The mystery deepens.

Young Jin Baek, 44, Korean father and husband whose estranged wife and two teenage daughters were killed, was found dead today. Photo: IAIN McGREGOR- The Press. Image may be subject to copyright. Source

Related Links:

Serial No 1,707. Starting April 2010, each entry on this blog has a unique serial number. If any of the numbers are missing, it may mean that the corresponding entry has been blocked by Google/the authorities in your country. Please drop us a line if you detect any anomaly/missing number(s).

Posted in Bihar, environment, murder mystery, Peruvian Andes, Uttar Pradesh | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Eyjafjallajökull Eruption – Latest Satellite Image

Posted by feww on May 11, 2010

Eyjafjallajökull Eruption Continues Unabated

Europe Should Fear the Worst From Icelandic Volcanoes, and Start Large-Scale Contingency Planning: Fire-Earth*

Fire Earth believes there’s more than 80 percent probability of a second, larger Icelandic volcano erupting this year.

About 50 additional volcanic tremors have struck beneath Eyjafjallajökull Glacier volcano in the past 12 hours, IMO automatic chart shows.

Farms  south of the eruption site have experienced almost continuous tephra fall over the last 24 hours, Iceland Met Office (IMO) reported.

The plume rising from the Eyjafjallajökull volcano reached up to 6kms (20,000 feet) a.s.l. on May 10, 2010, as MODIS on NASA’s Aqua satellite captured this image. The ash is blowing southeast over the North Atlantic Ocean. Red outlines the location of a hot spot (probably lava) on the summit of the volcano. Farms south of the erupting volcano reported that course ash fell throughout the day. The icecap east of the volcano—Myrdals-jökull—is painted with two black stripes that reveal where the wind blew concentrated plumes of ash in previous days. Image and Caption: NASA E/O. [Caption edited for brevity.]

Volcanic Ash Advisory from London – Issued graphics

Flight Cancellation/ Airport Closures

  • More than a dozen European airports in southern Europe and N Africa were closed.
  • Parts of Turkish airspace were restricted

Related Links:

Serial No 1,706. Starting April 2010, each entry on this blog has a unique serial number. If any of the numbers are missing, it may mean that the corresponding entry has been blocked by Google/the authorities in your country. Please drop us a line if you detect any anomaly/missing number(s).

*We know that you can’t and won’t prepare for the looming disasters, but we are morally obligated to warn you! Fire-Earth

Posted in iceland volcanoes, Icelandic ash cloud | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »