Monday, June 21, 2010

Global warming may be normal at this point in glacial cycle - German and Russian scientists say that it is normal for an interglacial period like the one just ending to finish with one or more brief - in geological terms - spells of warming before the glaciers return. In the Earth's history thus far there have been eras where the glaciers covered much of Europe, lasting about 100,000 years. These are separated by warmer interglacial periods lasting around 10,000 years. We are currently at the end of an interglacial era called the Holocene. The last interglacial period - the Eemian - which ended around 115,000 years ago, ended with "significant climate fluctuations" before the rule of the glaciers returned.
The scientists believe that the end of the Eemian interglacial epoch saw "possibly at least two" warming events. "The observed instability with the proven occurrence of short warming events during the transition from the last interglacial to the last glacial epoch could be, when viewed carefully, a general, naturally occurring characteristic of such transition phases." The Eemian ice-free period wound up with sudden - in these terms - warming spells and serious changes in vegetation. Then the glaciers surged south, at their high tide 21,000 years ago reaching as far as Berlin. This Weichselian Glacial era ended around 15,000 years ago with the ice caps confined to the polar regions.
Our Holocene era reached its "highest point so far around 6000 years ago" and we might now expect to see sudden warmings and changes as at the end of the Eemian - followed by a slow descent into another freezing glacial era. "Detailed studies of these phenomena are important for understanding the current controversial discussed climate trend so that we can assess the human contribution to climate change with more certainty."

**Hold faithfulness and sincerity as first principles. **

This morning -

Yesterday -
6/20/10 -

INDONESIA - At least 17 people died in the powerful earthquake that struck Indonesia's Papua province last week. The 7.1-magnitude quake rattled the northern coast of Papua on Wednesday and left nine villages on Yapen island in ruins. "Rescuers located a public van with 13 passengers inside. It fell into a ravine when the quake struck," raising the total death toll to 17. The quake left more than 4600 people homeless and destroyed over 2500 houses. The rescue effort was being hampered by the remoteness of the island, which is 3300km east of Jakarta.


PHILIPPINES - The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology has warned tourists who have canceled their trips to restive Taal Volcano in Batangas and proceeded instead to Mayon Volcano as the Taal volcano is still dangerous with threatening rockfalls and sudden small explosions. The Phivolcs has been constantly monitoring the slight increase in the number of earthquakes recorded around the edifice, aside from the brighter crater glow, compared to previous months. “Rockfalls kill and aside from that, there is still possibility that sudden explosions could occur, that is why we cannot lower the alert status from level 1 to zero because the volcano is still under abnormal condition." Recurring rockfall events have been recorded in the past days as the crater glow also turned more visible. Rockfall-triggered tremors of at least five times a day were recorded since early this week, a dangerous condition for climbers who were confirmed to be trekking the volcano's upper slopes. The Phivolcs’ warning came at least five months after Mayon's alert level was lowered to 1 in January, after a month-long restiveness in December that forced over 10, 000 families to take refuge in safe ground.

Tropical depression BLAS was 560 nmi WSW of Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.
Hurricane CELIA was 334 nmi SSW of Acapulco, Mexico.

The first hurricane of the 2010 Pacific season, Celia, has formed hundreds of miles off the coast of Acapulco, Mexico. Packing winds of 75 miles per hour (120 kilometers per hour), Celia was centered about 265 miles south of Acapulco and moving slowly westward at seven miles per hour. The Category One storm was expected to continue its path and show some strengthening over the next 48 hours. However, Celia was located so far off land that it posed no threat and no coastal warnings were issued.
The other major storm to strike the Pacific so far this season was Tropical Storm Agatha, which slammed into Guatemala in May, unleashing heavy rains and floods that left some 275 people dead or missing across Central America.


Antarctic glacier melt maybe 'not due to climate change' - British and international researchers, having probed an Antarctic glacier which is thought to be a major cause of rising sea levels worldwide, report that increased polar ice melting may not be driven by climate change. It appears from the Autosub's under-ice surveys that the PIG's ice flow formerly ground its way out to sea across the top of a previously unknown rocky underwater ridge, which tended to hold it back. Many years ago, however, before the area was surveyed in much detail, the glacier's floating outflow sheet separated from the ridge top which it had been grinding away at for millennia and so picked up speed. This also allowed relatively warm sea water to get up under the sheet and so increase melting and ease of movement. “The discovery of the ridge has raised new questions about whether the current loss of ice from Pine Island Glacier is caused by recent climate change or is a continuation of a longer-term process that began when the glacier disconnected from the ridge." Once the grounding line began its downslope migration from the ridge crest prior to the 1970’s, a period of rapid change was inevitable, and since that time oceanic variability may have had relatively little influence on the rate of retreat. Or in other words the glacier would have shown the same acceleration and thinning it has shown since the 1990s with or without climate change, perhaps accounting for its very rapid melting and the local contrast with the general picture of increased Antarctic sea ice.
The PIG has flowed more and more rapidly into the Amundsen Sea since scientists have begun monitoring it, adding fresh water to the world's oceans. Like certain other regions the glacier is bucking the overall south-polar trend which has actually seen hundreds of thousands of square kilometres of new sea ice accumulate around Antarctica in recent decades. "Estimates of Antarctica’s recent contributions to sea level rise have changed from near-zero to significant and increasing. Increased melting of continental ice also appears to be the primary cause of persistent ocean freshening and other impacts."


Over the weekend, the sun produced two massive eruptions. The action began on June 19th when old sunspot 1081 exploded on the far side of the sun. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory witnessed huge plumes of twisting debris rising up over the sun's northwestern limb. We know the source of this farside blast because NASA's STEREO-Ahead spacecraft is stationed over the sun's western limb, and it had a direct view of the blast site.
On June 20th, magnetic fields running along the sun's eastern limb became unstable and the resulting blast was ONE OF THE BIGGEST BLASTS IN RECENT YEARS. It was so big, it exceeded the field of view of SDO's high-res cameras. SDO mission scientists are processing the data now. (videos)
A solar wind stream flowing from a coronal hole should reach Earth on or about June 25th.

-Portland Shellfish Company, Inc. is recalling the following brands of cooked, ready to eat fresh or frozen lobster meat: Portland Shellfish Co. Inc brand, Claw island, Craig's All Natural, Meat Without Feet, and Inland Ocean cooked, fresh or frozen lobster claw and knuckle meat as recent tests show the product has the potential to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes.
-Caldwell Fresh Foods, of Maywood, CA, is voluntarily recalling all alfalfa sprouts manufactured under the Caldwell Fresh Foods, Nature's Choice, and California Exotics brands, because the alfalfa sprouts may be contaminated with Salmonella.
-MiDAS Foods International of Oak Park, MI is recalling Instant Beef Soup dry mix and Instant Beef Stroganoff sauce mix because it has the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella.
-MY-A & CO. of Cheverly, MD is recalling its 3.5oz jars of Ground Black Pepper Double Golden Fish because they may be contaminated with Salmonella.
-The Kroger Co. is recalling Kroger California Seasoning Blend Garlic Powder and Kroger Special Seasoning Blend Lemon Pepper sold in its retail stores because the Company has been made aware by a supplier that an ingredient in the product may have been contaminated with Salmonella.
-Del Bueno of Grandview, WA is recalling all size packages of Queso Fresco Fresh Cheese because it has the potential to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes.
-Whole Foods Market announced the recall of its Whole Catch Yellow fin Tuna Steaks (frozen) with a best by date of Dec 5th, 2010 because of possible elevated levels of histamine that may result in symptoms that generally appear within minutes to an hour after eating the affected fish.
-Watkins Inc. of Winona, MN, is recalling Crab Snack & Dip Seasoning food because they have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella.
-Natural Balance Pet Foods, Inc., of Pacoima, CA, announces a voluntary recall of Natural Balance Sweet Potato & Chicken Dry Dog Food with the "Best By" date of June 17, 2011, in 5-lb. and 28-lb. bags because it has the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella.
-Response Products, Broken Bow, NE is voluntarily recalling Cetyl M for Dogs due to a possible Salmonella contamination from the hydrolyzed vegetable protein component.
-The Procter & Gamble Company is voluntarily recalling specific lots of its Iams canned cat food in North America as a precautionary measure. Diagnostic testing indicated that the product may contain insufficient levels of thiamine (Vitamin B1), which is essential for cats.
-US Oftalmi, of Hallandale, Florida, is conducting a voluntary nationwide recall of all Over-the-Counter Eye Drops and Nasal Drops.
-Blacksmith Brands, Inc. is voluntarily recalling all lots of four children's products in the PediaCare line.
-McNeil Consumer Healthcare, Division of McNEIL-PPC, Inc., is recalling five product lots as an addition to the list of products included in the company's January 15th, 2010 product recall. The additional lots involved are four product lots of BENADRYL(R) ALLERGY ULTRATAB[TM] TABLETS, 100 count, sold in the U.S.; and one product lot of EXTRA STRENGTH TYLENOL(R) Rapid Release Gels, 50 count sold in the U.S., Trinidad and Tobago, Bermuda, and Puerto Rico.