Sunday, June 6, 2010

Before you marry, keep both eyes open;
after you marry, keep one eye closed.
Jamaican proverb

Sorry, no update last Friday, June 4.

This morning -

Yesterday -
6/5/10 -
6/4/10 -
6/3/10 -


ECUADOR - There was another nighttime spectacular from the "Throat of Fire" volcano. Tungurahua tossed blazing rocks into the sky Thursday night, accompanied by booming explosions that shook the ground. Eruptions this week prompted the evacuation of hundreds of nearby residents. Officials say they've recorded at least 135 explosions, including 15 longer events. Tungurahua, one of eight active volcanoes in Ecuador, has been lively since 1999, with a strong eruption in 2008.

Cyclone PHET was 195 nmi SW of Karachi, Pakistan.

Cyclone Phet has killed 12 people and left one missing in Oman before heading towards Pakistan. Rescue teams are working to reopen roads, restore electricity, and repair water mains. Phet is on its way to Pakistan, with winds of up to 120 kilometres an hour, where some 60-thousand people have been evacuated from the south coast.
PAKISTAN - The coastal areas of Balochistan received a heavy downpour with strong winds ahead of Cyclone Phet, which hit Oman June 4 and was forecast to make landfall in Pakistan within the next two days. Torrential rains hit the coastal areas of Gwadar, Jevani and Pasni early June 4 and continued until the afternoon. The tropical cyclone in the Arabian Sea, downgraded June 3 to category 2 and moving at 13km per hour, was predicted by the meteorological service to turn north and hit the coast in Sindh. The government set up an emergency cell in Gwadar with the navy and coast guard on alert to help storm victims. The government already has prohibited local fishermen from going into the sea and evacuated 7,000 residents from the marine areas of Thattha district.


AFRICA - A severe drought is causing increasing hunger across the Eastern Sahel in west Africa, affecting 10 million people in four countries.

CUBA is urging people to save water amid what it is calling a "critical" and "tense" drought that has left reservoirs at 40 percent capacity.

PHILIPPINES - Drought, caused by cyclical warming of the surface waters of the Pacific Ocean, has devastated the Ifugao rice terraces, paddies carved from mountainsides 5,000 years ago, that are among the country's top tourist draws. The Red Cross is aiding more than 7,000 families who are to get 175 tonnes of rice, fish paste and cooking oil, while 2,400 families will get corn seeds and fertilisers to replace crops wiped out by the El Nino dry spell. "This is an exceptional situation." "We saw the devastation brought about by El Nino in various parts of the country, especially in the Ifugao (towns) where many residents heavily depend on rain-fed farming." Philippine farm output fell 2.84 percent from a year earlier in the three months to March due to El Nino. The weather service said normal rainfall levels are expected to return this month.

HAWAII - extreme drought in Hawaii approaches one year. Exceptional drought, D4 category on the U.S. drought monitor map, continued for a third consecutive month in the South Kohala district of the Big Island. Extreme drought conditions, D3 category, also remained in place over most areas in the Ka‘u, North Kona and South Kona districts. Maui County also has persistent areas of extreme drought over the lower elevations of leeward Maui and the western two-thirds of Molokai. The island of Lanai also has ongoing severe drought conditions, D2 category, affecting agricultural interests. On Oahu, below normal rainfall over the east end of the island along with warmer temperatures resulted in a substantial drop in levels within the Waimanalo reservoir which supplies irrigation water. The declining water levels prompted the State of Hawaii Department of Agriculture to impose a 30 percent cutback in irrigation water use and service on limited hours only three days per week. As a result, this area of the island is now considered to be under extreme drought in the U.S. Drought Monitor Map. The last time the State of Hawaii was considered to be drought-free was April 15 2008. Since then, various areas of the main Hawaiian Islands have been under at least moderate drought conditions. The ongoing episode of extreme drought began nearly a year ago on July 7, 2009.


A fireball, which scientists believe to be probably a meteor, that was the size of the Earth made an impact with the planet Jupiter Thursday, June 3. A scar formed on Jupiter last year as a result of another impact that had a power equivalent to a few thousand nuclear bombs. That scar was the size of the Pacific Ocean.

THE SUN AWAKENS, NASA IS WARY:The sun is waking up from a deep slumber, and the next few years could bring much higher levels of solar activity. NASA is keeping a wary eye on the sun as officials meet in Washington DC on June 8th to discuss the potential consequences of stormy space weather.

AUSTRALIA - 6/5/10 - Sightings have been reported throughout the state's southeast of a mysterious light travelling in an erratic fashion across the sky in the early morning hours. Witnesses reported watching a ball of light move across the sky for up to five minutes at about 5.50am on Saturday. "It was a perfect spiral of light. I realised soon it was not the moon but that it was shooting like a comet from the southern sky and off into the northwest." Police and search and rescue crews confirmed they had received calls from Brisbane, the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast about the strange light. The weather bureau said there were no weather conditions which would explain the light. A Defence spokeswoman also said she had no explanation. (bizarre illustration)


Reports accuse WHO of exaggerating H1N1 threat, possible ties to drug makers. European criticism of the World Health Organization's handling of the H1N1 pandemic intensified Friday with the release of two reports that accused the agency of exaggerating the threat posed by the virus and failing to disclose possible possible influence by the pharmaceutical industry on its recommendations for how countries should respond. The reports outlined the drumbeat of criticism that has arisen, primarily in Europe, of how the world's leading health organization responded to the first influenza pandemic in more than four decades. "For WHO, its credibility has been badly damaged."

Global H1N1 activity continues decline - The World Health Organization reported "active but declining" pandemic H1N1 transmission in parts of the Caribbean and Southeast Asia, with much of the rest of the world remaining quiet. The WHO also said the Southern Hemisphere is showing no evidence of the onset of the winter flu season but mentioned limited, localized pandemic flu activity in Chile. It also specified low but significant levels of predominantly seasonal H3N2 flu in several countries of East Africa.

New Zealand infection rates surprise officials - An estimated 18% of the population of New Zealand were infected by pandemic H1N1 from November 2009 through March 2010, including 1 in 3 children aged 5 to 19 years and 1 in 4 preschoolers. Results of the study showed far higher rates than expected. About 45.2% of infected individuals had no symptoms. Age was found to be the most important risk factor. The current prevalence of H1N1 immunity in the New Zealand population is estimated at 29%.