Sunday, October 3, 2010

INDONESIA - 21 volcanoes across the country are ready to erupt. Twenty-one volcanoes across Indonesia could erupt at any time, leading to natural disasters, officials have warned. An official from the Volcanology and Geological Disaster Mitigation Agency on Friday said that the alert for 18 volcanoes had been raised from Level 1, or “normal,” to Level 2, or “beware.” Three other volcanoes were on Level 3, or “standby,” just one step below full alert, or Level 4.
One of those three is Mount Sinabung in Karo district, North Sumatra, which began erupting on Aug. 29 after lying dormant for 400 years. Its last major eruption, on Sept. 7, spewed volcanic ash more than 5,000 meters into the atmosphere. “We downgraded Sinabung from Level 4 to Level 3 on September 23. However, we still urge the public to remain alert for any danger.” Most of the villagers who were evacuated after the initial eruption have since been allowed to return to their homes.
The two other volcanoes on Level 3 alert are Mount Karangetang on Siau Island in North Sulawesi and Mount Ibu on Halmahera Island in North Maluku. Karangetang is considered the most active volcano in the archipelago, with 41 major eruptions since 1675. Its last eruption, on Aug. 6, is believed to have killed four people. Ibu, meanwhile, has experienced ongoing eruptions since April 5, 2008, feeding a lava flow down one side of the mountain.
The 18 volcanoes on Level 2 alert include Papandayan in West Java, Slamet in Yogyakarta, Merapi in Central Java and Semeru and Bromo in East Java. Other volcanoes on Level 2 alert include Talang in West Sumatra, Kaba in Bengkulu, Kerinci in Jambi and Anak Krakatau in the Sunda Strait, between Sumatra and Java.
In the east of the country, the Level 2 volcanoes are Batur in Bali, Sangeang Api and Rinjani in West Nusa Tenggara, Egon and Rokatenda in East Nusa Tenggara, Soputan and Lokon in North Sulawesi, and Dukono and Gamalama in North Maluku. All 21 volcanoes highlighted have erupted sometime this year, and are among 59 active volcanoes across the country.

**Waiter, there's volcanic ash in my soup.
Yes, sir - that makes it a 'no-fly' zone.**

This morning -

Yesterday -
10/2/10 -

10/1/10 -

NEBRASKA - Last Sunday's earthquake in Dawson County is causing the Natural Resources District some concern. Experts worry the quake may have caused damage to area dams. The 3.0 earthquake happened just ten miles from about seven NRD dams. In a situation where there's a possibility that a dam may be cracked, the NRD says they'll take no chances. They'll be inspecting the dams in the next few days and will take precautionary measures from there. Experts explain that broken dam would cause a lot of damage. "Heavy rains we had in the northeast part of the state earlier this year washed out some dams and caused a lot of trouble. A lot of grief, a lot of damage. And we wouldn't want that to happen, especially from an earthquake."


The Indonesian government must build a seismic monitoring system to anticipate future geological disasters, a group of visiting Russian scientists said. The group was in Sidoarjo, East Java, this week to study the mud volcano that began erupting there over four years ago. The volcano has been spewing thousands of cubic meters of hot mud and gas every day from a crack that appeared near a gas drilling well operated by Lapindo Brantas in May 2006, swamping much of Porong subdistrict in Sidoarjo. A recent study by the same group of Russian scientists concluded that the eruption was “inevitable,” given the high tectonic volatility in the area, and warned of similar incidents in the future. The group also called for more seismic monitoring stations to be built to help predict future disasters.
The study, based on 3D modeling of the site, said the mud began spewing as a result of two earthquakes that occurred prior to th e disaster. The first quake — a magnitude-4.4 event in Sidoarjo on July 9, 2005 — created a fault. The second — a magnitude-6.3 quake in Yogyakarta on May 27, 2006, several hundred kilometers to the west — opened up the fault and allowed the mud to spew. “Those earthquakes that occurred before [the mud volcano erupted] were the geological incidents that helped the flow [reach] the surface. In addition, the [constant] movement of the Watukosek fault also speeded up the process. Eventually, the [Yogyakarta] earthquake that happened two days [before the mudflow] became the last ‘kickoff’” to push the mud to the surface. According to them, the disaster was natural and “impossible to stop.”
However, the finding has been challenged by a geological expert from Britain who said the conclusion that the mudflow was entirely natural “goes against all modern scientific thinking” and was not supported by data from the earthquakes and the gas well. “The [Yogyakarta] earthquake was too small and too far away, and we have very strong data showing that [the mudflow] was caused by an underground blowout at the Banjar Panji-1 well." A research team which included scientists from Britain, United States and Australia, had also concluded that mud volcano eruptions could have been avoided if the blowout in 2006 had been prevented.

No current tropical cyclones.

Remnants of tropical storm Nicole walloped U.S. East Coast with huge rainfall - Tropical storm Nicole and her aftermath dumped jaw-dropping quantities of rain on the East Coast, including 10 inches in 24 hours in parts of Pennsylvania. Wilmington, North Carolina was worst-hit, with 22.5 inches in five days.
Homeowners from North Carolina to Vermont will spend the weekend cleaning up. The heavy rain began even before Nicole swept inland from the Atlantic. “Some places have seen three months of rain in one day. In North Carolina it’s more like five or six months worth of rain in the past five days.”
The deluge has led to major flooding in such places. At least eight fatalities, all traffic-related, are attributed to the storm waters. Seven of the deaths were in North Carolina, where officials are asking residents to remain off the local roads. At the peak of the flooding on Thursday, the state had closed 150 roads. FEMA, at the request of state governors, has sent liaison officers to Maryland, Delaware, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Vermont, and New Hampshire.