Friday, May 17, 2013

US Spent More on 2012's Extreme Weather Cleanup than on Schools or Roads - U.S. taxpayers paid nearly $100 billion responding to damages caused by last year's extreme weather events associated with climate change, about $1,100 per taxpayer, according to an analysis by the Natural Resources Defense Council. That means that federal spending to deal with extreme weather far exceeded total spending aimed at solving the problem. In fact, it was eight times the EPA's total budget and eight times the total spending on energy.
Extreme Weather Drove More Than 30 Million People from Their Homes in 2012 - Millions of people were displaced from their homes due to flooding.
Ohio had at least 75 RECORD-BREAKING EXTREME WEATHER EVENTS in 2012. Nationally, 3,527 monthly weather records for heat, rain and snow were broken by extreme weather events, according to an updated review.

**Do your little bit of good where you are:
it's the little bits of good together that overwhelm the world.**
Desmond Tutu


Live Seismograms - Worldwide (update every 30 minutes)

This morning -
None 5.0 or higher.

Yesterday -
5/16/13 -

Volcano Webcams

Remote Alaska volcano continues to erupt with lava fountains, ash plumes. Onsite seismic instruments are picking up constant tremors from the eruption at Pavlof, located about 625 miles southwest of Anchorage. Residents of Cold Bay, 37 miles away, have reported seeing a glow from the summit. Steam and ash clouds are occasionally rising to 20,000 feet.


In the Indian Ocean -
Tropical Cyclone Mahasen was located approximately 53 nm southeastward of Dhaka, Bangladesh. The final advisory has been issued on this system.

In the Eastern Pacific -
Tropical storm Alvin was located about about 770 mi [1240 km] SW of Manzanillo, Mexico. Alvin is in a hostile environment. Little change in strength is forecast during the next 48 hours, but Alvin could degenerate into a trough of low pressure at any time.

Mahasen - Bangladesh rides out the weakened storm. Cyclone Mahasen weakened Thursday afternoon into a tropical storm and then dissipated, causing far less damage than had been feared as it passed over Bangladesh and spared Burma almost entirely. Category 1 Mahasen struck the southern coast of Bangladesh on Thursday, lashing remote fishing villages with heavy rain and fierce winds that flattened mud and straw huts, killing 12 people. Cyclone-induced rains have had much of the Bangladesh capital city knee-deep in water since Thursday morning.


Three weeks of extreme weather compels emergency relief from Maldives' government - Maldivian government authorities are providing emergency services and relief funds to island communities battered by three weeks of “extreme weather”. The National Disaster Management Centre issued a statement May 15 urging island and atoll councils to report any damage caused by the “harsh weather” as soon as possible.
Flooding due to three weeks of severe weather and heavy rain has damaged households, sewerage systems, as well as caused extensive agricultural destruction. Food shortages on some islands have resulted from agricultural damage and the disruption of transportation and supply networks due to bad weather. “All islands import food from Male’, however the seas have been so rough [supply] boats are still in Male’ and unable to reach the islands... they will try to send [food supplies] somehow.” Normally, supply boats travel between the atolls at least twice a week. “For the time being there is no emergency. If an island completely runs out of food, the MNDF is always on board [collaborating] with STO and NDMC, and will send vessels.”
The President met with officials from the Maldives Police Service, the Maldives National Defence Force, the NDMC, and other high-ranking government officials to discuss damages sustained and relief counter measures being taken nationwide. Meanwhile, the MNDF and police have issued precautionary warnings to the public due to the severe weather conditions. The Coast Guard issued a request that “all travelers to take necessary precautionary measures before setting on their journeys due to the severe weather with heavy rain and thunderstorms… particularly in the northern and southern regions of the Maldives.” They recommended travelers test communications sets and obtain updated weather forecasts before embarking on any journeys.
The Coast Guard further stated that average wind speeds of 15-25 miles per hour (mph) in the southern atolls and 7-17 mph are expected in the northern atolls, while wind gusts during thunderstorms will reach 40-50 mph. Additionally, the police issued an SMS bulletin today also warning the public to “take precautionary measures due to the bad weather”. A “white bulletin” was also issued by the Maldives Meteorological Service, warning that the central atolls can expect average winds speeds of 23-30 mph.
Thus far damage assessment reports have been submitted by 12 islands from seven atolls – Shaviyani, Meemu, Dhaalu, Thaa, Laamu, Fuvahmulah, and Addu City – representing regions from the far north to the far south of the Maldives. Other islands have reported storm-related damage directly to the media or have spoken with the NDMC, but have yet to official report these issues to the centre.

Big storms in China have killed at least 33 people and destroyed thousands of houses. 12 people are missing. At least nine provinces have had storms and some flooding and landslides since Tuesday. Guangdong province has been hit the hardest with 19 deaths and 11 missing people. Guangdong's weather service said some areas received more than 8 inches (21 centimeters) of rain in nine hours on Thursday. It forecasts more rain in the coming days and warns of mudslides.


Farmers in central Alabama are in the middle of planting season, and for the first time in three years they aren't dealing with drought conditions. The flip side is the wetter and colder than normal spring means the fields are sometimes too wet to work.


Extreme Weather Whiplash - 106° in Iowa on the Heels of Record May Snows. Sioux City, Iowa had their first-ever snowfall on record in the month of May on May 1 (1.4"), but hit an astonishing 106° yesterday.

Fire burns 3800 acres in California national forest - Cooler temperatures and lighter winds gave hundreds of firefighters a breather from a wildfire that has blackened hills near Interstate 5 north of Los Angeles.

Last year's drought dried-up tornadoes in southern Wisconsin - The tornado warning drought for the National Weather Service office in Sullivan is one year, 10 months and 23 days through Tuesday, the second-longest since records dating back to 1950.

Marshall Islands - The UN children's fund UNICEF has joined the Marshallese Government in providing emergency assistance to the nation's severely drought-affected areas. More than 5,000 people in the north of Marshall Islands have limited access to clean and safe water.

The Australian Environment Minister has rejected a plan to let starving cattle loose in conservation reserves and national parks in Queensland, infuriating the state government and drought-hit graziers.

Drought triggers shortage of fodder for cattle in India - The monsoon failure and the consequent crop loss have caused a severe shortage of paddy straw, the staple fodder for cattle, across the district.
Sugarcane acreage in India seen at four-year low on drought - "The drought certainly seems to be serious and will impact production for next year and India will certainly have to come back to the import market more."

U. S. Drought, cold cripple wheat crop - The government's forecast comes amid a season marked by drought and late spring freezes in the Midwest's major wheat growing areas, particularly in Kansas - the nation's biggest wheat-producing state.


X-FLARE THREAT CONTINUES - Sunspot AR1748 has already unleashed four X-class solar flares, but it might not be finished. The active region continues to grow beneath a delta-class magnetic field that harbors energy for powerful eruptions. NOAA puts the odds of another X-flare today at 60%.
The sunspot is not particularly large, but it is complex, with many dark cores scattered through its zone of influence. This is a sign of a complicated overlying magnetic field. Magnetic complexity is the source of AR1748's explosiveness: when tangled lines of magnetic force cross and reconnect - bang! A flare occurs.
All by itself, AR1748 has produced more X-flares than every other sunspot of the past year combined. In summary, AR1748 has given us an X1.7-class flare (0217 UT on May 13), an X2.8-class flare (1609 UT on May 13), an X3.2-class flare (0117 UT on May 14), and an X1-class flare (0152 on May 15). More could be in the offing.


New reports yield clues about H7N9 detection, links to poultry - Though the steady stream of new H7N9 cases has tapered, the pace of publications on the new virus is still brisk, with new reports today on Taiwan's case, a link between markets and human cases, and risk assessment and planning for possible scenarios in Europe.

Saudi Arabia assigns more labs to coronavirus probe - Saudi Arabia has dedicated more labs to investigating novel coronavirus (nCoV) cases in the country, while the condition of an nCoV patient in France has worsened.