Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Massive solar eruption to send radiation storm toward Earth - An immense blast of plasma spewing from the sun is to bombard Earth with THE STRONGEST RADIATION STORM SINCE 2005, prompting a RARE warning from US weather officials and even a plan to redirect certain high-flying airplanes. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Agency issued a watch for a geomagnetic storm, expected to reach our planet today, after a satellite witnessed an ultraviolet flash from Sunday night's massive solar eruption.
The storm poses no risk to Earth-dwellers. But as a rare precaution, polar flights on Earth are expected to be re-routed. Eruptions on the sun shoot tremendous streams of charged particles away from the star - in this case directly towards us. "There is little doubt that the cloud is heading in the general direction of Earth. The blast from the immense solar radiation storm let loose with a so called coronal mass ejection (CME) that will hit the atmosphere Tuesday morning, something NASA and NOAA monitor for as it could cause problems for astronauts, communications satellites, and even rocket launches." It could also affect navigation and the power grid.
The solar flare that spat out on Sunday at 10.59pm local time was rated an M9-class eruption - nearly an X-class flare, the most powerful type of solar storm. NOAA measures geomagnetic storms on a five-point scale from 1 to 5. G1 storms are minor, leading to weak power grid fluctuations and having only minor impact on satellites. G5 storms are extreme, leading to widespread voltage control problems, damage to transformers, radio outages and satellite problems. Geomagnetic storms today may be as strong as G3, causing intermittent navigation issues and problems with low-Earth satellites.

**Healing is a matter of time,
but it is sometimes also a matter of opportunity.**

This morning -

Yesterday -
1/23/12 -

Japan - Major Tokyo quake far more likely than government says. There is a 70% chance a magnitude 7 quake will jolt the southern part of the Tokyo metropolitan area in the next four YEARS, the university's Earthquake Research Institute said on Monday, warning companies and individuals to be prepared for such an event. In contrast, the government estimates a 70% probability of such an event in the next three DECADES.
A government survey says a magnitude 7.3 quake centered in the north of Tokyo Bay would cause about 11,000 casualties and destroy around 850,000 buildings, though one of the University of Tokyo team said it was hard to predict the impact of a major quake on the city. "The chance that a magnitude 7 earthquake will happen (in the area) has increased since the March quake. At this time, the government, individuals and corporations should prepare for that." A government official said the Tokyo University estimate was based on a different model from the one it uses. The university calculations take account of the greater seismic activity since March, while the government uses older data. There has been a fivefold increase in the number of quakes in the Tokyo metropolitan area since the March disaster, the research team said.
A magnitude 7.3 quake hit central Japan in 1995, devastating the port city of Kobe. It killed more than 6,400 people and caused an estimated $100 billion in damage. The Great Kanto earthquake of 1923 had a magnitude of 7.9 and killed more than 140,000 people in the Tokyo area. Seismologists have said another such quake could strike the city at any time.

5.8 Offshore Quake Causes Panic, No Tsunami in Chile - Monday's quake was centered 31 miles (50 kilometers) northwest of Concepcion, and was relatively shallow at 12 miles (20 kilometers) under sea level. But Chile's navy announced that it wasn't the kind of quake to generate a deadly tsunami.

In the Indian Ocean -
Tropical cyclone 08s (Funso) was located approximately 550 nm northeast of Maputo, Mozambique.

Cyclone Funso kills 12 in Mozambique - At least 12 people have been killed and thousands displaced when cyclone Funso hit central Mozambique at the weekend.
Tropical Cyclone Funso Still a Danger to Mozambique - Powerful, dangerous Tropical Cyclone Funso has continued to lash central Mozambique with flooding rain and damaging winds, even as it drifts away from the immediate coast. At least 12 people in Mozambique have been killed, and thousands of people have been driven from their homes, owing to a series of storms that began early last week. In an incident related to the early stages of Funso's development, there were apparently no survivors from ferry carrying 54 people that sunk on Jan. 18 off the Comoros Islands.
The Category 2 to Category 3 storm hovered nearly stationary within 50 to 100 miles the coast between the towns of Angoche and Quelimane between Friday and Sunday, when its center began to pull slowly away to the southeast. Highest sustained winds since Friday have ranged mostly from 105 to 115 mph. Owing to the long duration of high winds and torrential rain, reaches of the coast near the storm's offshore center may have suffered severe damage. High waves and storm tides undoubtedly battered the coast. Monday morning, top winds were reckoned by the JTWC to be about 115 mph, or those of a Category 3 hurricane. Drifting southeastward at less than 5 mph, the storm's eye had slipped to more than 100 miles off the mid coast of Mozambique.
Official forecasts have Funso remaining a powerful, dangerous cyclone over water for much of the week. Intensity is expected to reach Category 4 status. Movement is forecast to be mostly towards the east between Mozambique and Madagascar. The most likely path would steer the worst of the storm's potentially catastrophic winds away from land. Even so there is at least a small chance for a turn towards land.

Killer Fiji storm
- Central Nadi swamped yesterday by floodwaters. Heavy flooding struck the Fijian tourist hub of Nadi and the northern city of Ba as a large tropical depression hit the region. By last night, more than 20 evacuation centres had been set up in Nadi while Ba was under nearly 2m of water. The flooding has already claimed one life after a 30-year-old farmer trying to save his pigs in Dogoru River, Labasa, was caught in the rushing waters and became trapped in branches. In Ba alone, 133 evacuees are at a kindergarten while five more families have taken shelter in a school. The heavy rain in Fiji also caused the worst floods on the northern island of Vanua Levu in three years. The Fiji Meteorological Service said heavy rain would continue to fall over much of Fiji until tomorrow, causing more flooding in low-lying areas throughout the country. In 2009, hundreds of tourists from New Zealand and Australia were stranded by flooding in the same areas that have been hit this week. At that time, authorities declared a state of emergency in areas struck by a tropical storm, which killed eight people and left more than 9000 displaced.

Australia - A tropical cyclone could develop off the Northern Territory coast later this week, with a severe weather warning already in place. The Bureau of Meteorology predicted heavy rain, damaging winds and ABNORMALLY high tides off the north coast as a strengthening monsoon trough develops. There is a moderate chance a cyclone could form tomorrow or Thursday.
Heavy rains resulting in flash flooding are expected today over the northern Darwin, Daly and Arnhem areas, including the Tiwi Islands and the Cobourg Peninsula. Monsoon squalls with damaging winds of up to 90 kilometres per hour are also forecast, with northwesterly winds likely to cause tides to exceed the normal high tide zone in coastal areas between Cape Don and Cape Shield. Between 9pm (CST) on Monday and 3am (CST) today, 59 millimetres of rain fell at Black Point on the Cobourg Peninsula, while the Tiwi Islands copped a battering of 50mm. "Isolated storms are continuing in those areas, with a very strong squall line expected to keep moving along the coast throughout the day."
Twin tropical lows could combine to form monster cyclone system - Multiple tropical lows are threatening to form into cyclones by Australia Day bringing wind and rain to North Western Australia.


United Arab Emirates - Country continues to shiver as Met department records sub-zero temperatures at Jebel Jais area of Ras Al Khaimah. The UAE will wake up to the 'chilling' news that the cold snap that has enveloped the country will continue through the week.
Unaccustomed to the chill, UAE residents are putting up a brave front as a cold wave continues to spread across the length and breadth of the country, with extreme weather conditions sweeping mountainous regions and the country recording its lowest temperatures for the year yesterday. Minimum temperatures are set to dip to 0°C in the UAE’s mountainous regions while internal areas could see temperatures dipping to a nippy 5°C and coastal areas could see minimum temperatures of 13°C. Rough weather has prompted a warning to beachgoers across the UAE to refrain from venturing into the sea. The UAE’s met department has predicted that the rough weather will continue until Friday. Strong winds have been buffeting Dubai since early morning.