Your Journey Begins!

Web Search

Avalanche danger high, warning system limited

Avalanche danger in Norway is high, and experts are urging better warning systems.PHOTO: ANDERS HARTMANN / SCANPIX

Heavy snows and unstable temperatures have been setting off avalanches, snow- and landslides all over Norway. Geologists worry that current warning systems are inadequate, and can be life-threatening.

Snow storm blankets Middle East

Snow in Jerusalem. Photograph: Menahem Kahana/AFP/Getty

has been hit by a FREA
K blizzard a few days after parts of China were blanketed in heavy snow. The Israeli weather service said up to 20cm (8in) of snow had fallen in Jerusalem. More was expected this morning. In Jordan, police said roads into the capital, Amman, were temporarily closed. In Syria, temperatures dipped below freezing and snow blanketed the hills overlooking Damascus. High winds of 70km/h (45mph) forced the closure of the Mediterranean ports of Tartous and Lattakia.

LEBANON - Heavy snow pummeled Lebanon on Wednesday leaving thousands without power or telephone lines, and causing widespread havoc on roads. Internal Security Forces declared emergency, warning motorists against driving on mountainous roads due to thick fog, snow and ice. Coastal cities saw heavy rain and the formation of a RARE thin layer of hailstones on cars and roads as TEMPERATURES REACHED RECORD LOW LEVELS. Tens of villages were isolated and lost power during the storm. The storm inflicted severe damages to crops and properties all over the Bekaa valley and most regions that lie 650 meters above sea level. Heavy snow fall paralyzed the villagers' movement and forced the closure of schools, stores and firms in mountainous regions.

Warmer Atlantic fuels hurricanes

Breaking Earth News
Researchers say they have shown that a half-degree Celsius temperature rise in the Atlantic ocean fuelled a 40% increase in hurricanes. The team showed ocean warming is directly linked to the frequency, strength and duration of hurricanes. Hurricanes feed on warm water, leading to conventional wisdom supported by some recent research that global warming could be revving up more powerful storms. US researchers, however, last week challenged this view, saying global warming could reduce the number of hurricanes hitting the United States, with warmer waters resulting in atmospheric instabilities that prevent storms from forming.

Cold waves likely to damage mustard seed crops

Mustard seed production, that was estimated to be lower this year because of a fall in acreage, may decline further due to the cold wave in north India and rainfall in the eastern parts of the country. Cold wave conditions are prevailing over some parts of Punjab, Haryana, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, east Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand where minimum temperatures are four to six degrees below normal. Ideal temperature for mustard is between 10 degrees to 14 degrees. There could be a damage of 5-7% due to the cold waves. The inner seed of the crop has shrunk due to the cold waves and that will affect oil recovery. According to weather forecasts, there are ground frost conditions likely over some parts of Punjab, Haryana, north Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh during next two nights while isolated rain/thundershowers are likely over West Bengal and Sikkim.

FYI: All About Mustard Seed

Asteroid Zooms Past Earth

Breaking Earth News
Professional astronomers got an advance look at an asteroid passing so close to Earth that amateur astronomers would've been able to see it early Tuesday.

Asteroid 2007 TU24 passed within about 540,000 kilometres, or 1.4 lunar distances, of Earth, reaching its closest approach at 3:33 a.m. ET.

The asteroid is roughly 250 metres in diameter and somewhat asymmetrical, according to images from radar data obtained last week, using the 70-metre Goldstone antenna, part of NASA's Deep Space Network Goldstone station in Southern California's Mojave Desert.


Dead Spy Satellite Poses Threat

WASHINGTON (AP) - A large U.S. spy satellite has lost power and could hit the Earth in late February or early March, government officials said Saturday.

Falls From Orbit
1979: Skylab, a 78-ton space station, fell from orbit, scattering debris over the Indian Ocean and remote western Australia. The crash of the American spacecraft caused no damage.

Hillary Trounces Obama in Florida Primary

Breaking National News
Hillary Trounces Obama in Florida

Women, seniors, Latinos take Clinton to Florida win
Sen. Hillary Clinton says she wants the Florida delegates to participate in the Democratic national convention, while
Obama Camp Dismisses Importance of Florida Win

DAVIE, Florida (CNN) -- Sen. Hillary Clinton dominated Florida's Democratic presidential primary Tuesday with solid support among women, seniors and Latino voters.
after losing last week's hotly contested South Carolina race to Illinois Sen. Barack Obama, the New York senator and former first lady was looking to Florida to show she could win in a diverse, heavily populated state -- even one where no delegates were at stake.

"I am so grateful to the countless Floridians who, on their own, organized, worked hard, talked to your friends and your neighbors. You made a very big difference," Clinton said.

Exit polls showed Clinton led Obama and the other leading Democrat in the race, former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards, on all the top issues Democrats considered important -- the economy, the war in Iraq and health care. Obama only came close on the war in Iraq, which he has criticized Clinton for voting to authorize in 2002.

Voters under 30, whom Obama has worked hard to recruit in other states, made up less than 10 percent of Florida's total. Voters over 50 in retiree-heavy Florida made up nearly more than 60 percent of turnout, and Clinton won solidly among that group.

About 47 percent of voters listed the ability to bring about change as their top quality in a candidate, and a slim majority of those people supported Obama, the exit polls found. But Clinton trounced Obama and Edwards among the 23 percent who listed experience as their top quality -- leading Edwards by 7-1 in that category and 28-1 over Obama. She also led strongly among people who described "caring about people" as the most important quality.

Obama and Edwards ignored the state to concentrate on next week's Super Tuesday contests in states such as New York, California, Missouri and Georgia. Obama dismissed the contest Tuesday, and his campaign issued a statement declaring the race a tie in the delegate count: "Zero for Obama, zero for Clinton."

NOTE: Skywatch-Media News will be making an endorsement with regard to the presidential race this week, along with who we believe will best lead our country forward during these troubling times.

Antarctic glaciers melting more quickly

Click the Image Above to enlarge

Antarctica's massive coastal glaciers are quickly melting into the sea as the oceans around the continent grow warmer - and the pace of ice loss is speeding up.

An international satellite network measuring the thickness of the glaciers as they shrink year by year has found that the glaciers have melted so rapidly during the past 10 years that the continent is losing almost as much ice as Greenland, according to researchers gathering the satellite data.

The team from Chile, England and the Netherlands is led by Eric Rignot, a radar engineer and glacier specialist at UC Irvine and NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory who has watched the shrinking glaciers and gathered data for the past 15 years from Canadian, Japanese and European polar-orbiting satellites.

Those satellites carry radar instruments that can measure the thickness of each glacier with remarkable accuracy, and they have now mapped more than 85 percent of the entire coastline of Antarctica, covering all the continent's major glaciers.

Unlike Greenland's coastal glaciers, where meltwater from the ice on the surface seeps down to the base of each glacier and lubricates it to speed its flow to the sea, the glaciers on Antarctica move down from the land as huge ice sheets and spread out over the ocean, where the thick glaciers are known as ice shelves.

For many years, scientists have watched some of these giant ice shelves breaking apart and crashing into the sea, and now more and more of them are melting as they move out over the ocean.

Dead Goats in Birbum West Bengal Cause Concern

Hundreds of goats have died of an unknown disease over the past four days in Birbhum's Rampurhat block II. A farmer said his goat was shivering and sneezing and saliva was oozing from its mouth. He had called in a local vet, who could only say the animal was suffering from high fever but could not pinpoint a disease. Though he prescribed medicines, those have not worked. The farmer, who has already lost 35 chickens to bird flu, is now scared about his livestock. He said that several neighbours had lost their goats as well to the mystery ailment. The animals had fever and their throats started swelling before they fell unconscious and died within minutes. At Dakhalbati, more than 60 goats have died so far. Villagers are blaming bird flu, as the symptoms are similar. But the state administration has claimed there was no information of cattle dying in the district. "It could be pneumonia, which commonly affects goats." The dying goats in Birbhum are cause for concern as Birbhum is the epicenter for the H5N1 in West Bengal, where there are also over 2000 people with an undiagnosed fever. H5N1 has not been reported in goats previously, although influenza has been noted in horses (H7N7 and H3N8) as well as dogs (H3N8). H5N1 has the ability to jump to many species, including mammals. In addition to humans, H5N1 has been isolated from pigs, dogs, cats, ferrets, foxes, stone martens, civet cats, and mice, so a goat host can’t be ruled out. Two of the most common characteristics of H5N1 are pneumonia and rapid death.

Winter Storm Chaos Grips China

Breaking Earth News
Passengers wait for delayed trains at the Guangzhou Railway Station in Guangzhou, in south China's Guangdong province Monday, Jan. 28, 2008. Over 500,000 passengers have been stranded in Guangzhou after heavy snow in provinces to the north created havoc with transport networks. (AP Photo/Color China Photo)

GUANGZHOU, China (AP) — Deadly winter storms — the worst in five decades — showed no signs of letting up Tuesday in China, where cities were blacked out, transport systems were paralyzed and a bus crash on an icy road killed at least 25 people during the nation's busiest travel season.

The extreme weather — blamed for 54 deaths in the past two weeks — was walloping China as the country began one of the world's biggest annual mass movements of humanity: the Chinese New Year festival. Before the storms, railway officials estimated that a record 178.6 million people — more than the population of Russia — would travel by train for the holiday, which begins Feb. 7.

Sky Watchers in Scandinavia Observe Strange Sunset Clouds

NACREOUS CLOUDS: As January comes to an end, sky watchers in Scandinavia are recovering from a veritable storm of nacreous clouds. After mid-month, hardly a night went by without someone spotting the phenomenon. "It was incredible! They were all over the sky," says Morton Ross of Oslo, Norway. This picture, taken by Ross on Jan. 25th, shows a typical apparition:

Also known as "Mother of Pearl" clouds, nacreous clouds are peppered with tiny ice crystals that blaze with iridescent color when struck by light from the setting sun. It is these crystals that make nacreous clouds so rare: they require exceptionally low temperatures of minus 85 Celsius (-120 F) to form. Icy nacreous clouds float 9 to 16 miles high, curling and uncurling hypnotically as they are modulated by atmospheric gravity waves.

For much of January, these clouds rolled across the Arctic circle with puzzling regularity. Why the sudden abundance? Is the show over? No one knows. Stay tuned for February!

Higher Storm Waves: Sign Of Climate Change?

Contractors race to buttress beachfront homes in Neskowin, Oregon before the next storm. (Photo by Tom Banse)

Posted: Friday, January 25, 2008

West Coast, USA
Pounding storms are eroding and flooding beachfront property. Weather buoy records going back more than two decades show winter storm wave heights steadily rising on the Northwest Coast. Correspondent Tom Banse visited coastal residents who want to know why this is happening.

RADIO Podcast
Click the Image to Listen

For many of us, it would be a dream to own a second home on the Oregon or Washington Coast. But for some who’ve achieved it, that dream is turning into a headache this winter.

East Cuba on Tremor Alert

HAVANA (PL) - Over 40 earth tremors in the country's south-eastern zone in the last few hours concern Friday experts and people from that region.

The National Seismological Researches Center reported that six of 41 telluric events occurred Thursday as of 17:12 hours have been perceptible in zones of Santiago de Cuba and Granma provinces.

According to the National News Agency, the magnitude of the movements generated in the Oriente fault, the country's main seism-generating zone, ranged between 3.4 degrees and four degrees in the Richter scale.

Lava flow within 1.4 miles of Royal Gardens

Lava flows from Kilauea Volcano headed for the Royal Gardens subdivision on the Big Island yesterday. This is a close-up of a small dome fountain from the top of the new rootless shield.

Hawaii, USA

Fingers of smooth, ropy lava from Kilauea Volcano pushed toward Royal Gardens yesterday, getting within 1.4 miles of the subdivision before stalling, according to scientists at the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory.

There are just two residents left in the remote community, which has been overrun by lava numerous times in recent decades.

The current lava flow is coming from a chain of shield-shaped mounds that have formed above the main lava tube created by the Thanksgiving Eve flow. Another shield is under construction near the latest breakout point.

"We just found a new one this morning," said Jim Kauahikaua, scientist-in-charge at the observatory.

Meteor impacts can have subtle effects

LOWER HUTT, New Zealand, Jan. 23 (UPI) -- A New Zealand study suggests meteor impacts with the Earth can produce effects of a more subtle and insidious kind than just catastrophic extinction.

Researchers at the Institute of Geological and Nuclear Sciences in Lower Hutt, New Zealand, said the shattering impact of meteors on rocks can produce increased groundwater-rock surface interaction, affecting the quality of groundwater that percolates through the fractured, melted rocks of the impact structure.

The scientists said a good example was found at the Canadian town of Gypsumville, Manitoba, located near the Lake St. Martin meteor impact crater. Domestic wells in the town have elevated salinity, sulfate and fluoride concentrations. The fluoride, which exceeds health limits, is of concern as excess intake causes mottling of teeth at moderate levels, to softening of bones and neurological damage at higher levels.

The groundwater with elevated fluoride is shown to occur exclusively within the impact structure, and the study is thought to be the first to document enhanced groundwater fluoride concentrations associated with impact structures.

The research is detailed in the journal Geology.

Brazil takes action to stop alarming deforestation of Amazon

BRASILIA (AFP) — Brazil announced a series of measures Thursday aimed at stopping an alarming rise in deforestation of the Amazon over the past five months.

The initiatives reinforced a number of actions unveiled a month ago and called for stepped-up police vigilance, a ban on using deforested areas, and the suspension of public funds for any group or individual found to be breaking environmental laws.

Cattle ranchers and loggers are targeted in the move, which was worked out Thursday in a cabinet meeting between President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, his ministers in charge of the environment, agriculture, justice, defense, and science, along with the country's police chief.

"What we want to do is install in the Amazon a permanent process of checks," the secretary general of the environment ministry, Joao Paulo Capobianco told reporters.

The issue has become an urgent priority for Brasilia after government figures showed the stripping of trees from the vast Amazon region -- sometimes called the "lungs of the world" for its role in producing oxygen -- had risen sharply in the last five months of 2007.

It is estimated 7,000 square kilometeres (2,700 square miles) have been devastated, with more than half of that occurring in November and December.

Bangladesh bird flu worsening

Breaking Earth News

BANGLADESH needs house-to-house surveillance to fight bird flu because the situation has worsened and is "posing a danger to public health", the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) said today.

The news from the UN's FAO came as neighbouring India battled its worst outbreak of bird flu - believed to have spread from Bangladesh, which has been reporting sporadic outbreaks of the deadly H5N1 strain since February 2007.

"The situation has worsened in the past week compared to the first few months of the outbreak. The international community is very concerned," FAO's Bangladesh chief Ad Spijkers said in Dhaka.

"We took the concern to the minister Wednesday and donors are going to meet with the government very soon to discuss comprehensive measures to fight the disease. It's posing a danger to public health," he said.

Cotonou - a city slowly swallowed by waves

Breaking Earth News
Huge breakers constantly battering Benin's coast and the rest of the shoreline on the Gulf of Guinea are starting to take their toll. Ivory Coast, Ghana, Togo and Nigeria are also fighting to stop the sea from gulping up chunks of land. In tiny Benin, the erosion on its narrow stretch of coastline was first recorded a century ago. The phenomenon has been exacerbated by the rise in seawater levels, attributed to global warming, and by massive construction projects. "The coastline to the east of Cotonou has moved back 400 metres in 40 years, that is an average of 10 metres a year." Worldwide, seawater levels are estimated to have risen between 10 and 20 centimetres in the past 100 years and that trend is speeding up. Sea water levels on the West African coast could rise by more than 50 centimetres between now and the end of the century. "If nothing is done before 2025, the coastline will lie 950 metres farther inland than it did in 1963." Cotonou families have already been forced to move. "When I finished building my house in 1987, the sea was 250 metres away and there were four rows of houses in front of mine. Now they're all under water." And it is not only private homes at risk. Cotonou's Palm Beach hotel, once the "in" place to gather for drinks, is now three-quarters swallowed by the sea. Rising sea levels along the Gulf of Guinea could cost its rim countries almost 14 percent of their gross domestic product.

Antarctic Ice Loss Speeds Up, Nearly Matches Greenland Loss

Breaking Earth News
Antarctic ice loss between 1996 and 2006, overlaid on a Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) mosaic image of Antarctica. The colors indicate the speed of the ice loss. Purple/red is fast. Green is slow. Image credit: NASA

PASADENA, Calif. - Ice loss in Antarctica increased by 75 percent in the last 10 years due to a speed-up in the flow of its glaciers and is now nearly as great as that observed in Greenland, according to a new, comprehensive study by NASA and university scientists.

In a first-of-its-kind study, an international team led by Eric Rignot of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., and the University of California, Irvine, estimated changes in Antarctica's ice mass between 1996 and 2006 and mapped patterns of ice loss on a glacier-by-glacier basis. They detected a sharp jump in Antarctica's ice loss, from enough ice to raise global sea level by 0.3 millimeters (.01 inches) a year in 1996, to 0.5 millimeters (.02 inches) a year in 2006.

Rignot said the losses, which were primarily concentrated in West Antarctica's Pine Island Bay sector and the northern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula, are caused by ongoing and past acceleration of glaciers into the sea. This is mostly a result of warmer ocean waters, which bathe the buttressing floating sections of glaciers, causing them to thin or collapse. "Changes in Antarctic glacier flow are having a significant, if not dominant, impact on the mass balance of the Antarctic ice sheet," he said.

Climate change 'significantly worse' than feared as Arctic in Dangerous Meltdown

Switzerland (AFP) - Climate change is occurring far faster than even the worst predictions of the UN's Nobel Prize-winning scientific panel on climate change foresaw, Al Gore warned Thursday.

New evidence shows "the climate crisis is significantly worse and unfolding more rapidly than those on the pessimistic side of the IPCC projections had warned us," the former US vice president and climate campaigner told delegates at the annual World Economic Forum in Davos.

The Arctic ice cap has shrunk by an area twice the size of France's land mass over the last two years. "The year 2008 promises to be a critical year on every level. Summer 2007 was marked by a major retreat in the ice-cap, one we were not anticipating. The rate of decline is also two or three times faster than (observed) beforehand." Disruption to the thermal layers of atmosphere stacked over Earth's far north was cited as the principal cause by Swedish researchers earlier this month.

Climate change 'significantly worse' than feared as Arctic in Dangerous Meltdown Climate change 'significantly worse' than feared as Arctic in Dangerous Meltdown Climate change 'significantly worse' than feared as Arctic in Dangerous Meltdown Climate change 'significantly worse' than feared as Arctic in Dangerous Meltdown Climate change 'significantly worse' than feared as Arctic in Dangerous Meltdown Climate change 'significantly worse' than feared as Arctic in Dangerous Meltdown Climate change 'significantly worse' than feared as Arctic in Dangerous Meltdown

Armed forces will feel climate strain

Breaking Earth News
forces around the world will face tough new challenges as climate change unleashes violent storms, raises sea levels and causes floods and famines, a new report warns. Up to 200 million people could become environmental refugees by the middle of the century, bringing to one billion the number of people displaced by conflicts, natural disasters and large development projects. "It is crucial that governments begin to take steps now towards developing effective policy solutions for the police, security services and military to help them adapt to the new and changing demands. However, they must resist the temptation to use force to try and control insecurity and maintain the status quo. In this instance, prevention really is the only cure." Food, water and energy - essential for human survival - are already in short supply in many parts of the world and shortages will worsen as populations grow and weather patterns change. Climate change also has the potential to change the world in both geographical and political terms as coastlines retreat, island nations are swamped and national borders are put under pressure.

Gloomy weather takes its toll on health

Breaking Earth News

WALES is at risk of depression and vitamin deficiencies after nine months without any decent sunshine.

As the nation starts its 20th consecutive day of rain, the wall-to-wall sunshine of last April is but a distant memory.

And forecasters say Wales is set for more gloomy weather, although it will be drier.

Experts are worried that the overcast and wet weather, which has characterised both the summer and winter, could cause a rise in depression and some people could even be suffering from the effects of low levels of vitamin D.

The Samaritans said that since the miserable June, calls to its helplines have been significantly higher in 2007 than a year before – last month the charity took 172,039 calls, up 24% on December 2006.

And volunteers answered more calls in October, November and December than in any month of 2006.

Cliff Arnall, a Brecon-based psychologist, who specialises in human happiness, said, “The weather is definitely a major factor in mood and happiness.

“We’re not just talking about people with Seasonal Affective Disorder. People’s mood lifts when there’s sunshine.

Looting angers flood-hit town of Emerald

Looters have ransacked a number of inundated homes
in the flood-hit central western Queensland town of Emerald, adding to the woes of locals still waiting for flood waters to recede. The Nogoa River, which peaked at 15.4m on Tuesday night, is falling at a frustratingly slow rate. Supplies are currently being transported to isolated areas around the region, particularly the Gemfields district, with refrigerated trucks delivering milk, eggs, bread and other essentials to stranded locals. Farmers along the Nogoa have lost at least $80 million in damaged crops, infrastructure and livestock.

Image: From Emerald, Australia

Chaos and screams as cyclone hits cruise ship

New Zealand
P&O's Pacific Star has received more passenger complaints after sailing into a storm. Photo / Greg Bowker

Cruise ship Pacific Star is again the subject of passenger complaints after being battered by the high seas and winds of Cyclone Funa which smashed glasses, moved fridges and left five passengers injured. "It was chaos, people were screaming." The company running the cruises, P&O, knew about Cyclone Funa and continued sailing into it, becoming caught in the worst of the storm on Sunday night. "There were people running around with life jackets on because water was coming into their rooms, it was absolute panic. Everything in the bar area was smashed, everything in the kitchen - all the plates were smashed. It [the ship] started rolling from side to side, everything was shaking and it just got worse and worse. The fridges were flying out of their cubbyholes." "We had swells of about 7 metres ... that's high and does cause illness on board. Obviously the weather's out of our control and we know that most of the journey was fine weather. It's just that the cyclone did move around a bit throughout the Pacific." In July, passengers on the Pacific Star described a holiday in hell after a trip from Auckland to Vanuatu in which the ship got caught up in another storm.

Image of Giant UFO Over Central Texas: Real or Hoax?

How could the UFO sighting in Stephenville, Texas happen with no one getting any video and or any kind of images? There were no photos released of a craft that has been described as enormous. Some say it was a mile wide and they all got a good look but until now there have been no photos released. However, there is one photo that has now been released by a local Fox news station and they have posted the picture on their website. Image: Sunset Photo May Contain UFO Image.

Early blossoming branches give growers a blooming headache

Blossoms are sold in Yen Phu street, Ha Noi. —VNA/VNS Photo
Ochna blossom and flowers for Tet are blooming too early in HCM City, Da Lat City and the Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta provinces. And although prices are likely to be higher this year than last, their early flowering is worrying growers. Experienced growers attribute the phenomena to abnormal weather, acid rain and hoarfrost. "The early harvest will add to already higher fertiliser and transport costs to drive prices up." Owners are pinning their hopes on the remainder of their ochna trees to make up for the loss of those that have already flowered. "Many owners have only have 30 to 40 per cent of their blooms ready and are trying to nurse the rest of their trees to bloom at the right time for the Tet holidays. The amount of ochna blossoms will one third less than last year." The cheapest ochana blossom tree costs about VND300,000 (US$18) with the most expensive ranging from VND20 million to 50 million ($1,250 to $3,125). Peach blossom growers in northern VietNam are also worried about their harvest. Abnormal hot and cold weather has made it difficult for them to forecast when their trees will bloom. "The unpredictable weather will make peach blossom RARE this year. Numerous peach blossom trees in my garden have died." Many growers say their trees have already failed.

Climate Change: A Blueprint for Survival

From the Editor's Desk
Skywatch-Media News
January 23, 2008

Dan Bloom's inventive concept for a polar city was brought to the forefront during a live interview on Blog Talk Radio. His creative idea on how to survive the earth's climate changes was one that is great "food for thought" in these troubling times. Dan believes that
humanities only chance for survival depends on our ability to comprehend the severity of climate change, and our willingness to take action to assure mankind's survival. His polar city blueprint is a unique and innovative idea that could make our survival a reality.

To listen to the Podcast click the play icon below

Earth Frenzy Radio Show
Climate Change: A Blueprint for Survival

: If you would like to receive an email notice of upcoming radio shows, please click on the "add to favorites" button located in the upper right side of our show website

My Odeo Channel (odeo/4826e86cacf3fbb3)

The Earth Frenzy Radio Show with your host Steve Shaman

© Skywatch-Media: All Rights Reserved

India faces bird flu 'disaster'

INDIA'S worst ever outbreak of the virulent H5N1 strain of bird flu could turn into a disaster, an official warned, as five people were reportedly quarantined with symptoms of the virus.

Across the border ... a Bangladeshi livestock vendor at a roadside market in Dhaka, where bird flu has worsened with the onset of the winter / AFP

India faces bird flu 'disaster'

Britain's Atlantis: the search for our lost capital

In medieval times, Dunwich was a thriving rival to London. Then it was swallowed by the sea. Now, thanks to technological advances, the ancient settlement may soon be visible once more

In medieval times, Dunwich was a thriving rival to London. Then it was swallowed by the sea. Now, thanks to technological advances, the ancient settlement may soon be visible once more. Around midnight, at certain tides, church bells can still be heard tolling from the lost city of Dunwich. Or so local legend has it. The sound comes from beneath the waves of the North Sea, for Dunwich – one of England's most prosperous medieval centres – has been sunk beneath the waters for 500 years and more. This British Atlantis – with its eight churches, five houses of religious orders, three chapels and two hospitals – is now about to be exposed to human gaze for the first time since the first of a series of great storms and sea surges hit the East Anglian coast in 1286 and began the process of coastal erosion which led to the city's disappearance. The sea may give up its secrets thanks to multibeam sonar techniques which send out pulses of sound that are reflected back to build acoustic images of the seabed, GPS technology that can pinpoint objects' location to within a metre, and a "sub-bottom profiler" that can spot objects buried beneath the sea bed.


W Bengal bird flu 'is spreading'

Breaking Earth News
Officials in the Indian state of West Bengal say that the bird flu epidemic has spread to two more of the state's 19 districts, taking the total to nine.

They say that the spread of the H5N1 virus means that even more chicken and duck will have to be killed than was originally estimated.

On Monday officials said that around 2m birds would need to be culled - a figure that will now rise.

Health experts have warned that the outbreak could get out of control.

The H5N1 strain of bird flu is regarded as highly pathogenic and can also cause disease and death in humans.

However, most human victims have contracted the disease through close contact with affected birds.

There is little evidence that the virus can be transmitted easily between humans.

Deluge floods Boynton, causes 40 wrecks

Breaking Earth News
Florida, USA
"It's very rare for January," Meteorologist Brabander said of the intense storm. "Even in the summer it's pretty rare

BOYNTON BEACH — A rare January storm dumped an estimated 8 to 10 inches of rain on the city in about three hours Tuesday night, snarling traffic, drowning an Interstate 95 entrance ramp and prompting the National Weather Service to issue a flood warning.

A cold front pushing through from the northwest collided with warm air from over the ocean about 4 p.m. to produce buckets and buckets of rain over a relatively concentrated area, said Kim Brabander, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Miami.

The result: a brief period of pandemonium on the roadways in Boynton Beach and northwest Delray Beach after the sun set Tuesday evening.

Water rose to 1 to 2 feet in some places on Congress Avenue between Golf Road and Gateway Boulevard, crippling cars and stranding patrons at shops and restaurants along the busy corridor west of Interstate 95. At the Boynton Beach Mall, water submerged the parking lot in places.

Police and Florida Highway Patrol troopers scrambled to control traffic as stoplights malfunctioned.


ILLINOIS - Winter weather brings unexpected temperature highs and lows - This winter’s weather has been anything but predictable. With temperatures ranging from pleasantly warm to bitterly cold, it is hard to know what to expect. “Having temperatures that reach 60 degrees this time of year in our area is VERY UNUSUAL.” The temperature of 62 degrees on Jan. 7 was a record high for the DeKalb area. Just 10 days later, the temperature dropped to below 0. “The reason for the dramatic changes in weather is caused from a wild and fluctuating jet stream pattern." The warm weather can be attributed to air blowing in from the western Caribbean and the Gulf of Mexico while the recent bitter colds are coming in from Siberia. “Typically our winter air is blowing in from the western U.S. or Canada, so when it comes from the Gulf of Mexico or Siberia it is RARE." Some residents feel uneasy about the peculiar warmth occurring at this time of year. “I’d prefer the weather to remain more stable. When the weather changes so much, it seems like a cause for concern.” Image Above: Snow falls on the Martin Luther King Memorial Commons on Monday night. Just 15 days ago DeKalb, saw a record high for this time of year of 62 degrees.

MONTANA - An eight-year drought has left scores of ponds and wetlands dry and thirsty in Yellowstone. It also stands to force shifts in wildlife, the frequency of wildfires, the timing of mountain snowmelt and the growth of nutritious vegetation. Drought-weakened conifers have fallen victim to increasing numbers of tree-killing bark beetles. The bugs are natural regulators for the Yellowstone ecosystem, but it's UNUSUAL to have so many break out at once. Milder temperatures allow them to survive over winter and drought conditions diminish trees' natural defenses. Drought also opens the door for non-native species to gain a foothold. The area's history is rife with rapid swings between long stretches of wet and dry weather and a few years in between that make up average conditions. Researchers pieced together Yellowstone's climate history over the last 800 or so years by examining rings from old trees in and around the park. The work revealed regular wet and dry phases lasting 10 to 15 years. Precipitation levels in the latest drought roughly match dry periods back to the year 1173. What's different now, though, is that summertime temperatures are, on average, warmer and winters are milder, allowing snowpack to melt weeks earlier than normal. "That can really stress these natural systems." So far this winter, Yellowstone has seen a roughly average amount of precipitation. But one winter, or even one good year, won't end the drought. Even then, the effects will linger. "It usually takes about as long to get out of drought as it took to get into it."
Image Above: MIKE STARK/Gazette Staff
Elk graze near the North Entrance of Yellowstone National Park. Wildlife officials are watching for the effects of an eight-year drought on elk and other species in the park.

Multi-Media Information

Multi-Media Information

Video Newsflash

Website Disclaimer