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Archive for October 18th, 2013

FRANCISCO Shifts Up Into Major Typhoon Gear

Posted by feww on October 18, 2013

FRANCISCO strengthens into Cat 4B storm, could become a super typhoon

Packing sustained winds of about 230km/hr, FRANCISCO has intensified to a Cat 4B typhoon force, with a significant probability [P=74%] of further strengthening into a super typhoon, albeit briefly, with winds in excess of 250 km/h.


Time: 06:00UTC – October 18, 2013
Movement: NW at 3km/hr
Position: Near 14.6ºN, 141.8E
Location: About 340km WNW (290 degrees) of Hagåtña, Guam, Mariana Islands
Max Sustained Winds: 230km/hr
Max Wind Gusts: 275km/hr
Significant Wave Height: ~ 10m
Source: FIRE-EARTH and others

FRANCISCO is expected to intensify to a Cat 5 Super Typhoon Force, before weakening as it moves toward Japan region. —FIRE-EARTH.

francisco vis-ir 18oct13
Typhoon FRANCISCO. VIS/IR satellite image (FIRE-EARTH Enhancement) recorded at 06:32UTC on October 18, 2013. Original image sourced from: CIMSS/SSEC/WISC.

More details to follow…

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Fukushima Potentially More Disastrous Than Hiroshima

Posted by feww on October 18, 2013

Radioactivity spikes 6,500 times at Fukushima: TEPCO

The crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant’s operator, TEPCO, says it detected a sharp rise in radioactivity in a well near a storage tank on Thursday, NHK reported.

On Thursday, workers detected 400,000 becquerels per liter of beta ray-emitting radioactive substances, including strontium, at a well  near the tank that  leaked more than 300 tons of contaminated water in August, TEPCO said.

The radioactivity level was 6,500 times higher than the readings taken the previous day.

“The well was dug to monitor the impact of the leakage and is located at about 10 meters from the tank,” the report said.

TEPCO believes the latest findings are indicative of ground water contamination, because radioactive substances like as strontium are transferred relatively slowly.

Given the extent of Fukushima catastrophe, the operator’s inability to deal with the ever-worsening disasters at the site and Japanese government’s “wait-and-see” attitude, to put it mildly, the blog Moderators believe the situation at the disaster-stricken plant could potentially become as bad, if not worse than the aftermath of Hiroshima atom bomb.

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Crop Disaster Declared for 123 Counties in 10 States

Posted by feww on October 18, 2013

Excessive Rain, Freezing Temps and Extreme Heat Cause Agricultural Disaster in 10 States

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has designated at least 123 additional counties as agricultural disaster areas across 10 states.

The crop disasters areas are in the states of Connecticut, Idaho, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Vermont and Washington.

USDA issued a total of 6 separate disaster declarations on October 1, which were posted on their website on October 17, 2013 due to the government shutdown.

New York – First Disaster Designation due to damages caused by excessive rain and related flooding, high winds and hail that began May 1, 2013 and continues.

Disaster areas are Albany, Essex, Monroe, Otsego, Seneca, Broome, Franklin, Montgomery, Putnam, Sullivan, Cayuga, Fulton, Oneida, Rensselaer, Ulster, Chenango, Genesee, Ontario, Saratoga, Washington, Clinton, Greene, Orange, Schenectady, Wayne, Columbia, Herkimer, Orleans, Schoharie, Westchester, Cortland, Jefferson, Oswego, Schuyler, Wyoming, Dutchess, Madison, Allegany, Delaware, Livingston, St. Lawrence, Tompkins, Bronx, Erie, Niagara, Steuben, Warren, Cattaraugus, Hamilton, Onondaga, Tioga, Yates, Chemung, Lewis and Rockland counties.

Also included in the above designation

  • Connecticut: Fairfield and Litchfield counties.
  • Massachusetts: Berkshire County.
  • New Jersey: Passaic and Sussex counties.
  • Pennsylvania: Pike, Susquehanna and Wayne counties.
  • Vermont: Addison, Bennington, Chittenden, Grand Isle and
    Rutland counties.

New York – Second Disaster Designation due to damages and losses caused by freeze and frost that occurred March 13 – May 28, 2013.

Crop Disaster Areas: Cayuga, Columbia and Oswego, Albany, Greene, Madison, Rensselaer, Ulster, Cortland, Jefferson, Oneida, Seneca, Wayne, Dutchess, Lewis, Onondaga and Tompkins counties.

Also included in the above designation

  • Massachusetts: Berkshire County.

New York – Third Disaster Designation due to damages and losses caused by weather-related disease and fungi infestation that began June 19, 2013, and continues.

Disaster areas are Cayuga, Cortland, Oswego, Tompkins, Onondaga, Seneca and Wayne counties.

Oregon – Disaster Designation 1

USDA has designated three counties in Oregon as crop disaster areas due to damages caused by freezing temperatures that occurred April 8-30, 2013.  The counties are Baker, Umatilla and Union.

Also included in the above designation

  • Minnesota: Grant, Malheur, Morrow and Wallowa counties
  • Idaho: Adams and Washington counties.
  • Washington: Benton, Columbia and Walla Walla counties.

Oregon – Disaster Designation 2

USDA has designated nine counties in Oregon and Washington as crop disaster areas due to damages and losses caused by freezing temperatures and excessive rain that occurred March 22 – June 30, 2013.

  • Oregon: Wasco , Clackamas, Hood River, Marion, Wheeler, Gilliam, Jefferson and Sherman counties
  • Washington: Klickitat County

Oregon – Disaster Designation 3

USDA has designated nine counties in Oregon and Washington as agricultural disaster areas due to damages and losses caused by freezing temperatures and extreme heat that occurred April 8 – May 13, 2013. Those counties are

  • Oregon: Gilliam, Morrow, Sherman, Umatilla, Wasco and Wheeler counties.
  • Washington: Benton and Klickitat counties.

[All counties listed above were designated natural disaster areas Oct. 1, 2013.]

The latest designations raise the total [listed] crop disaster areas to at least 3,844 counties across 44 states so far this year.

The crop disasters for year 2013 include losses and damages caused by

  • Flash flooding
  • Excessive rain, moisture, humidity
  • Severe Storms, thunderstorms
  • Ground Saturation, Standing Water
  • Hail
  • Wind, High Winds
  • Freezing Temperatures and Excessive Rain
  • Fire, Wildfire
  • Heat, Excessive Heat, High temp. (incl. low humidity)
  • Winter Storms, Ice Storms, Snow, Blizzard
  • Frost, FREEZE
  • Hurricanes, Typhoons, Tropical Storms
  • Tornadoes
  • Volcano
  • Mudslides, Debris Flows, Landslides
  • Heavy Surf
  • Ice Jams
  • Insects
  • Tidal Surges
  • Cold, Wet Weather
  • Cool/Cold, Below-normal Temperatures
  • Lightning
  • Disease
  • Freezing Temperatures
  • Extreme Heat
  • Excessive Rain and Related Flooding
  • High Winds and Hail
  • Weather-related Disease and Fungi Infestation

1. USDA trigger point for a countywide disaster declaration is 30 percent crop loss on at least one crop.

2. The counties listed above as agricultural disaster areas includes both primary and contiguous disaster areas.

3. The U.S. has a total of 3,143 counties and county-equivalents.

4. A number of counties have been designated crop disaster areas more than once due to multiple disasters.

5. The disaster designations were approved by USDA between January 9 and September 25, 2013.

Secretary Vilsack also reminds producers that Congress has not funded the five disaster assistance programs authorized by the 2008 Farm Bill.These are SURE; the Livestock Indemnity Program (LIP); the Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honey Bees, and Farm-Raised Fish (ELAP); the Livestock Forage Disaster Program (LFP); and the Tree Assistance Program (TAP). Production losses due to disasters occurring after Sept. 30, 2011, are not eligible for disaster program coverage.

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