Wednesday, August 25, 2010

**Never confuse thoughtlessness with malice.**
Robert Charles Whitehead

This morning -

Yesterday -
8/24/10 -

CALIFORNIA - There are true believers in the concept of hot and dry earthquake weather. They got some fodder for their theory when a 4.0 struck the Santa Monica Bay Monday night. The quake centered three miles north-northeast of Santa Barbara Island struck at 10:42 p.m.


COLUMBIAN authorities announced the evacuation of almost 8,000 people who live on the slopes of the Galeras volcano in the southern department of Nariño on Tuesday after the Colombian Institute of Mining and Geology issued a code orange alert level for the volcano. "Orange means that an eruption is probable in days or weeks." Locals who could be affected by lava flows were called to "urgently" move to temporary lodging provided by the state in the municipalities of Pasto, La Florida, and Nariño. Ingeominas raised the alert to orange after a tremor measuring 4.6 on the Richter scale was registered close to Galeras' summit, as well as almost 400 tremors of varying intensity. Galeras last erupted in January. The eruption did not cause any deaths or injuries, but lava flows running down the sides of the volcano caused forest fires. In 2009, the volcano, considered the most active in Colombia, erupted three times
TURKEY - The volcano that formed Turkey’s largest lake is still active despite not having erupted in nearly 600 years, according to a group of international researchers working in the eastern province of Van. “We determined that a lot of volcanic activity has occurred in the last 100,000 years in Lake Van, which is 400,000 years old. “This place is not only risky for volcanism but also for earthquakes.”
Mount Nemrut, a peak in the Tatvan district of the eastern province of Bitlis that shares its name with a more famous mountain in southeastern Turkey, most recently erupted in 1440 and will likely erupt again. The lake is a key site because researchers believe its sedimentary record could reveal a long and continuous continental sequence that covers several glacial–interglacial cycles and thus help establish new findings on the dynamics of lake-level fluctuations and the history of volcanic, paleoseismic and earthquake activities. “We found a thick layer of volcanic deposits at the bottom of Lake Van. With this, we will make a risk analysis and will be able to know how often the eruptions occurred. When geophysicists, geologists and risk analyzers conduct research together, we will be able to predict what will happen in the forthcoming years.”

Hurricane DANIELLE was 643 nmi ENE of Bridgetown, Barbados.
[An additional area of low pressure following Danielle has a 90% chance of becoming a tropical cyclone within the next 48 hours.]
Tropical storm FRANK was 178 nmi WSW of Acapulco, Mexico.
Tropical storm MINDULLE was 124 nmi S of Hanoi, Vietnam.

Tropical Storm Mindulle came ashore in northern Vietnam, bringing heavy rain and strong winds that destroyed rice crops and blew roofs of schools and clinics. Flooding submerged thousands of hectares of rice fields worth “hundreds of millions of dong." Mindulle dumped as much as 273 millimeters (11 inches) of rain in some areas after coming ashore.
The storm left one person seriously injured near the city of Vinh and damaged schools, houses and clinics. A 1,000- ton cargo boat with 12 sailors onboard was in danger of sinking off Vietnam’s east coast. Mindulle came ashore near the city of Vinh, south of Hanoi, just before 7 p.m. local time. Winds from the storm were forecast to drop below tropical storm status as it crosses northern Vietnam toward Laos. Heavy rain may continue to cause flooding and landslides in mountainous areas.


URUGUAY's wool clip is forecasted to drop 20% in 2010/11 because of a fall in the number of sheep and extreme weather conditions. “Lambing is going to be one of the lowest in recent years because extreme weather conditions killed many sheep. In the last three weeks winter was particularly punishing with below zero temperatures, too much rain and too much mud." A lower wool production per sheep “has been recorded in the first shearing experience of this year” since wool is considerably lighter “less greasy and cleaner. Evidence that ewes faced a very tough winter”. Wool experts estimate the loss in weight could average almost a kilo per sheep.
“We estimate this coming season’s wool production at 34 million kilos, which is A RECORD LOW for Uruguay, but there are signs that sheep farming is again becoming attractive." Uruguay recently resumed sales of boneless lamb and mutton to Canada, which together with Brazil, Mexico and the Arab countries have been strong demanders of the Uruguayan product. Sales to Canada (and the other Nafta associates, United States and Mexico) were interrupted back in 2002 when a breakout of foot and mouth disease that started in Argentina rapidly expanded to neighbouring Uruguay and the south of Brazil. Uruguay’s flock has been falling for several years and has been reduced to basalt areas given the more profitable option of cattle breeding and agriculture such as soy, barley and wheat.

CHINA - Crazy climates will continue the rest of 2010 - The country will likely experience ABNORMALLY LOW temperatures and freezes this winter, warned a senior official with the China Meteorological Administration. The country might face the La Nina in the second half of the year, which could cause abundant rainfall in autumn, and little rainfall and low temperatures in winter. La Nina refers to a large pool of unusually cold water in the equatorial Pacific that develops every few years and influences global weather. It is the climatic opposite of El Nino, which is a warming of the Pacific.
Based on current monitoring, China this year faces a climate condition similar to 1998. That summer, China experienced its worst-ever flooding, which killed 4,150. China has been facing an UNUSUAL climate this year and has suffered constant natural disasters, especially after the flood season began. So far this year, 14 rounds of torrential rain have hit the southern region of China and areas along the lower reaches of the Yangtze River. In July, North China also suffered five rounds of rainstorms successively.
On early Aug 8, devastating rain-triggered landslides hit Zhouqu county in Northwest China's Gansu province, killing at least 1,435 people and leaving 330 others missing. The most immediate cause of the current unusual climate is ABNORMAL ATMOSPHERIC CIRCULATION. Global warming also plays a role, which has caused more frequent extreme weather conditions.
Meanwhile, similar UNUSUAL CLIMATE EVENTS have also happened in some neighboring countries, such as severe flooding disasters triggered by torrential rains in Pakistan and forest fires in Russia due to rainfall shortages and droughts. China has made great improvements in the forecasting of natural disasters, such as droughts, typhoons and rainstorms, but predicting the exact amount of rainfall or the specific place that the disaster will happen is still quite difficult.


Finland suspends H1N1 vaccine over narcolepsy cases - Finland's National Institute for Health and Welfare recommended suspending GlaxoSmithKline's Pandemrix pandemic 2009 H1N1 vaccine as a precaution until a link to narcolepsy cases has been ruled out. "Indications of a time link between vaccinations and narcolepsy cases have been seen, but an actual link has not been established. In light of international information, a connection would even seem unlikely." The vaccine can be given to people traveling to areas experiencing novel H1N1 flu or for other exceptions. There are reports of 15 cases of narcolepsy, six of which "are more clearly associated with the vaccination than are the remainder."


Walmart announced the recall of 380,000 pounds of deli meat products that may be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes. The recall involves Marketside Grab and Go sandwiches, but not individual packages of deli meat. No illnesses have been connected to the ham, beef, salami, pepperoni, and bacon products, which were distributed nationwide solely to Walmart outlets. Although a spokesman said most of the meat is likely already consumed, it has been pulled from shelves nonetheless. A Walmart spokesperson could not say how widely the recalled products were distributed.