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One million flee as Hurricane Gustav revs up

Dangerous Storm Approaches Louisiana
Mandatory Evacuation Ordered

— Spooked by predictions that Hurricane Gustav could grow into a Category 5 monster, an estimated 1 million people fled the Gulf Coast Saturday, even before the official order came for New Orleans residents to get out of the way of a storm taking dead aim at Louisiana.

Mayor Ray Nagin gave the mandatory order late Saturday, but all day residents took to buses, trains, planes and cars, clogging roads leading away from New Orleans, still reeling three years after Hurricane Katrina flooded 80 percent of the city and killed about 1,600 across the region.

The evacuation of New Orleans becomes mandatory at 8 a.m. today along the west bank of the Mississippi River and at noon on the east bank. Nagin called Gustav the "mother of all storms" and told residents to "get out of town. This is not the one to play with."

******Important Notice********
Skywatch-Media News which operates this website is located in Baton Rouge, La. Due to the approaching storm Gustav which is expected to severely affect power supply, we anticipate that this website and our news services will be down for days and possibly for a week or more. As soon as power is restored to our area, we will continue with our news services. We hope that all those in the path of this destructive storm will remain safe and secure, and that all those in harms way will evacuate to a safer location.

Wettest August to exit with thunderous finale of heavy rain

WETTEST AUGUST SINCE 1992 and GREYEST AUGUST ON RECORD to exit with thunderous finale of heavy rain. Britain's woeful summer that never was will come to an end with thunderstorms and heavy rain. "There could be half a month's worth of rainfall in a couple of hours." The poor summer weather has been largely due to the position of the jet stream this year - the ribbon of fast moving air in the atmosphere which brings in weather systems from the Atlantic. This is in a more southerly position than usual, putting Britain in the firing line for weather fronts which usually come in over northern Scotland and Iceland. The UK has had just 96.3 hours of sunshine in the in the first 26 days of the month, 40 per cent below the August average of 165.1 hours.

Experts Probing Cause of Mini-Tsunami in South Africa

Breaking Earth News
South Africa

Cape Town - A mini tsunami may be the reason for the sudden rise and fall of the sea level along the West Coast over the last few days.

The National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) received reports that the sea level in Hout Bay, St Helena Bay, Saldanha Bay and Lambert's Bay changed suddenly three times on Thursday.

In Hout Bay, the water level first fell by a metre and then rose again by the same amount in the space of 20 minutes.

Factories were damaged by the high waves in St Helena Bay.

The NSRI called in the help of Geoff Brundrit, a retired professor of the University of Cape Town's Oceanography Department, to help investigate the phenomenon.

Cattle shown to align north-south

Have you ever noticed that herds of grazing animals all face the same way?
Images from Google Earth have confirmed that cattle tend to align their bodies in a north-south direction. Wild deer also display this behaviour - a phenomenon that has apparently gone unnoticed by herdsmen and hunters for thousands of years. Scientists say the Earth's magnetic fields may influence the behaviour of these animals. The Earth can be viewed as a huge magnet, with magnetic north and south situated close to the geographical poles. Many species - including birds and salmon - are known to use the Earth's magnetic fields in migration, rather like a natural GPS. A few studies have shown that some mammals - including bats - also use a "magnetic compass" to help their sense of direction. A study ruled out the possibility that the Sun position or wind direction were major influences on the orientation of the cattle. "In Africa and South America, the cattle (were) shifted slightly to a more north-eastern-south-western direction. But it is known that the Earth's magnetic field is much weaker there." Fieldwork revealed that the majority of grazing and resting deer face northward. About one-third of the deer faced southward. This sixth magnetic sense might be "virtually ubiquitous in the animal kingdom". "We need to think about some really fundamental things that this sensory ability provides in animals."

Avalanche raises spectre of worst death toll in Alps for over 50 years

100 people have been killed by avalanches in the Alps in 2008, one of the worst years since 1951

The accident has brought the total number of deaths from avalanches in the Alps this year to 100, making it THE WORST YEAR SINCE 1970, which in turn was the worst since the "Winter of Terror" of 1951 when 200 climbers died. This summer season more than 30 people have died in the French Alps, most of them near Mont-Blanc, and a further 60 have perished in the Italian and Swiss Alps. Sunday's disaster was the biggest in what has been a tragic summer on the Alps. The serac which broke off near the summit was the size of a four-story building and, by the time the resulting avalanche hit dozens of climbers toiling up the slope in the hours before dawn, it was travelling at about 60mph. Winter avalanches cause injury by burying climbers, but summer icefall avalanches kill by the impact of the ice, "which is not much different to being hit by a rock". In 1951: during a three-month period 649 avalanches killed 265 people in Austria and Switzerland. Villages and thousands of acres of forests were destroyed.

Tunnels to bring water to parched California

California, USA
A tunnel boring machine breaks through rock after a five-year-long dig through the San Bernadino Mountains in southern California August 20, 2008.

REUTERS/Jill Serjeant

CALIFORNIA is facing one of the worst droughts in its history. "We're potentially headed to one of the worst droughts we've ever had in California because of the conditions of storage, the fact that we're expecting very erratic weather patterns, and we have much more demand than the last drought in 1993." A massive mechanical mole surfaced on Wednesday from a nearly 5-year journey under mountains in the final stages of a $1.2 billion tunnel project that will supply extra water to drought-hit Southern California. The 3.8-mile (6.1-km) tunnel, 1,500 feet below the San Bernardino Mountains, is the last piece of a 44-mile (71-km), three-tunnel system that will bring an additional 650 million gallons a day to 19 million Southern Californians. Twenty years in the making, the tunnels will almost triple the amount of water in Southern California's half-empty reservoirs when the project is up and running in 2010. "When water is available we must be prepared to move large volumes of water during a relatively short time and then store it for use during dry periods and emergencies." Climate change has meant less water from melting snow in the Sierra Mountains, one of the main sources of water in the state. This past March to June was THE DRIEST ON RECORD in that region. Levels in the state's two largest reservoirs are at 48 percent and 40 percent capacity - the LOWEST IN MORE THAN 30 YEARS - and are expected to drop further by the end of December.

Century-long droughts have occurred at least seven times across eastern North America. A new study confirms that during periods when Earth received less solar radiation, the Atlantic Ocean cooled, icebergs increased and precipitation amounts fell, creating a series of 100-year droughts. Every 1,500 years, weak solar activity caused by fluctuations in the sun’s magnetic fields cools the North Atlantic Ocean and creates more icebergs and ice rafting, or the movement of sediment to ocean floors. This climate cycle triggers droughts, including some that were particularly pronounced during the mid-Holocene period, about 6,300 to 4,200 years ago. These droughts lasted for decades or even entire centuries. Though modern records show that a cooling North Atlantic Ocean actually increases moisture and precipitation, the historic climate events were different. In the past, the tropical regions of the Atlantic Ocean also grew colder, creating a drier climate and prompting the series of droughts. The climate record suggests that North America could face a major drought event again in 500 to 1,000 years, though manmade global warming could offset the cycle. “Global warming will leave things like this in the dust. The natural oscillations here are nothing like what we would expect to see with global warming.”

Drought brings cotton industry to its knees

Australia's cotton crop last year was the worst in three decades. (ABC)

Story: Australia's cotton industry is on the brink of collapse because of the drought and many growers have turned to other farming options.

Related News
Canada - Grande Prairie area of northern Alberta suffering from drought. Areas in central and southwest Peace County are expecting low crop yields.

SWEDEN - Heavy rain threatens Swedish harvest - The situation is precarious for Swedish grain farmers. Dry weather in the beginning of the summer hindered sowing and when the crops are now ready for harvesting the heavy rain is causing the problems. "The heavy rain means that the quality of the crops declines. A large part of the cereals harvest in central Sweden has been lost and has become fodder which gives a lower price... Fourteen days to 3 weeks of warm, dry weather, preferably windy, would enable most of it to be collected." However forecasts show no indication of being kind on the farmers. "We will have to wait a couple of weeks for good weather. It is looking generally unstable in the near future with two fronts of low pressure in the coming week." To rub salt into the wounds of the farming sector, grain prices have declined worldwide as a result of good harvests in Europe, the USA, Russia, Australia and China.

Storm surge of 6-8 possible with Tropical Storm Fay

Tropical Storm Fay prediction models estimate a 6 to 8 foot storm surge tide may coincide with an ABNORMAL high tide after midnight tonight. While the storm may increase to a Category 1 hurricane or higher, the chief concern of emergency officials is the storm surge which could flood homes and impact roadways.

Update: Tropical Storm Fay has struck Cuba after causing widespread flooding that left dozens dead in the Dominican Republic and Haiti.

Fay could reach hurricane strength before it nears the Florida Keys later on Monday, US forecasters say.

Quirky Weather Patterns Behind Region's Lightning Overload

Connecticut, USA
Meteorologists blame an UNUSUAL WEATHER PATTERN for the increase in the frequency and potency of the neighborhood-shaking thunder-and-lightning storms the region has experienced over the last couple of months. Technicians have seen an increase in computer problems consistent with lightning strikes and power surges. There have been 7,579 lightning strokes in New London County in 2008 through Monday. That's almost 6,000 strokes over last year's total, when 1,600 lightning strokes occurred during the same time period. A stroke is a series of electrical discharges comprising a single lightning discharge. A flash of lightning may contain one or a few tens of strokes. This year, an upper-level pool of cold air has made its way down from Canada and the Arctic and settled over the region, helping to create the storms. ”It's a VERY, VERY UNUSUAL PATTERN for this time of year. It's UNUSUAL that it lasted this long.” The pool of cold air has pushed the jet stream down near the Mason-Dixon Line in Georgia. Typically, at this time of year, the jet stream flows along the Canadian border.

Polar bear surprise sends scientists fleeing

Image; This polar bear showed up near a scientists' camp in northern Alaska, forcing the five experts to flee

Five scientists studying shorebirds in northern Alaska had to take flight after a polar bear showed up at a time of year it should have been out on ice floes hunting seals. The New York-based Wildlife Conservation Society said Thursday that it chartered a plane to fly the experts out early "because of a NEW AND UNUSUAL THREAT: a polar bear stuck on land due to climate change." Polar bears would normally be out on sea ice in spring and summer, "but with recent warming the ice is miles from shore and bears are becoming increasingly trapped on land well away from their usual seal prey." The experts were surveying birds feeding on the shorelines north of Teshekpuk Lake on the Beaufort Sea prior to their southward migrations. "The shorelines have experienced dramatic erosion because of the warming climate...Polar bears have been trapped on land in Arctic Alaska all spring and summer unable to swim out to sea ice and pursue seals. Their condition and how dangerous they might be is unknown

Tropical downpours worsening

OSLO, Aug 7 (Reuters) - Tropical downpours are becoming more frequent and the trend seems worse than expected, bringing greater risks of flash floods, scientists said on Thursday.

"As the tropics warm are are seeing an increased frequency in the heaviest rainfall," said Richard Allan of the University of Reading in England, who co-authored a study of tropical rains with Brian Soden of the University of Miami.

The satellite review of tropical rainstorms since the 1980s gave the first observational evidence to confirm computer models that predict more intense cloudbursts because of global warming stoked by human activities, they said.

Writing in the journal Science, they also said the trend to extreme soakings was stronger than predicted by computer models "implying that projections of future changes in rainfall extremes ... may be underestimated".

Live Interactive Broadcast: The Changing Poles

Strange Events At The South Pole

The Earth's Poles are Changing Fast
What Could be Causing This?

Nancy Lieder
Radio Commentator, Author & Lecturer
Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Live Interactive Session Rescheduled for 11:30 am CST

*Note- Due to Inclement Weather and a Power Outage in our location, the remaining 10 minutes of this program were not recorded. We plan to have Nancy back on our show in the immediate future. We apologize for any inconvenience attributed to these technical difficulties.

Listener Call-In: New CLICK TO TALK Feature. Listeners who wish to participate during our live internet radio show, must simply have a microphone connected to their computer and be logged onto our site. All questions directed to our guest should be short and specific.

Program Notes

Despite it still being the winter season in the Antarctic, with temperatures as low as minus 85 Fahrenheit, the massive Wilkins Ice Shelf is collapsing with astonishing speed.In addition penguin populations are plummeting due to climate change and pollution And then there's the "FREAKY SNOW". Nancy Lieder an enhanced contactee and emissary of the Zeta Reticulians will discuss what's happening to the Earth's poles in an interactive broadcast you won't want to miss.

About Nancy Lieder

Nancy Lieder is an alien contactee and emissary. For more than a decade she has led the campaign to inform and prepare the public about the passage of the "Planet X", and to quell the controversy surrounding the existence of the rogue planet.

Nancy was featured in the April 2001 edition of Art Bell's After Dark magazine, predited pole shifts, and appeared on the Coast to Coast radio show and Out There TV most recently in 2007. Nancy recently had a weekly radio spot called "The Connection" on BBS Radio

ZetaTalk which debuted in 1995, has a well documented track record of earth changes while "Troubled Times" (a non-profit organization) has become a leading authority to offering solutions for surviving the predicted pole shift.


Available at

BBS Radio Lecture Series

For More Information go to: ZetaTalk

The Zeta Report: Video Series



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Warmer weather produces more intense rainfall

WASHINGTON (AFP) — US and British researchers have confirmed the link between warmer climate and an increase in powerful rainstorms, according to a study released Thursday that underscores one of the challenges of global warming.

The researchers even found that the increase of extreme rainfall was higher than what has been predicted in current computer models, according to the study published in the journal Science.

The scientists pointed out that one of the biggest concerns regarding climate change is that heavy rainstorms will become more common and intense in a warmer climate due to the higher moisture available for condensation.

The more powerful rains also increase the risk of flooding that could have substantial impacts on societies and economies, they said.

Image Above: Aerial view of a flooded area in Trinidad in 2007, blamed on the "El Nino" weather phenomenon


A new study, co-funded by NASA, has identified a link between a warming Indian Ocean and less rainfall in eastern and southern Africa. Computer models and observations show a decline in rainfall, with implications for the region's food security.

Rainfall in eastern Africa during the rainy season, which runs from March through May, has declined about 15 percent since the 1980s, according to records from ground stations and satellites. Statistical analyses show that this decline is due to irregularities in the transport of moisture between the ocean and land, brought about by rising Indian Ocean temperatures, according to research published today in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. This interdisciplinary study was organized to support U.S. Agency for International Development's Famine Early Warning Systems Network.

Secret to Towering Rogue Waves Revealed

Live Science
Image: This rare photo of a rogue wave was taken by first mate Philippe Lijour aboard the supertanker Esso Languedoc, during a storm off Durban in South Africa in 1980. The wave approached the ship from behind before breaking over the deck, but in this case caused only minor damage. The wave was between 16 and 33 feet (5-10 meters) tall. Credit: Philippe Lijour via ESA
Deadly rogue waves 100 feet tall or higher could suddenly rise seemingly out of nowhere from the ocean, research now reveals.

Story: Understanding how such monstrous waves form could lead to ways to predict when they might emerge or, potentially, even drive them at enemy vessels, scientists added.

For centuries these killer waves had been dismissed as myths — towering walls of water blamed for mysterious disappearances of ships. But on New Year's Day on 1995, a wave that reached more than 80 feet high was detected with scientific instruments at an oil platform in the North Sea, confirming the existence of these legends.

Since then, the European Union initiated Project MaxWave, which relied on imagery from European Space Agency radar satellites to spot what appeared to be rogue waves around the world. Now scientists are trying to uncover what causes these monsters.

Brazil launches international fund to preserve Amazon

RIO DE JANEIRO (AFP) - Brazil on Friday created an international fund to fight deforestation of the Amazon and is accepting contributions to help preserve the world's largest rainforest.

Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva
signed a decree here creating the Amazon Fund, designed to receive up to 21 billion dollars in contributions over the next 13 years.

Donations will be administered and projects monitored by a state bank, the National Economic and Social Development Banks (BNDES).

The fund will also finance conservation and durable development projects proposed by the environment ministry, officials said.

European Birds Flock To Warming Britain

Image: Dartford Warbler

Researchers at Durham, the RSPB and Cambridge University have found that birds such as the Cirl Bunting and Dartford Warbler are becoming more common across a wide range of habitats in Britain as temperatures rise.

Unfortunately, some northern species, such as the Fieldfare and Redwing, are not faring quite so well and their numbers are falling

Researchers looked at twenty-five year population trends of 42 bird species in relation to changes in climatic suitability simulated using climatic envelope models.

Professor Brian Huntley from The Institute of Ecosystem Science at Durham University says: "The results are what we expected to find given the changes in climate over the last 20 years.

"Because the UK is in the middle Latitudes of Europe, we expected that recent climatic warming would favour species with ranges located in the south of Europe and adversely affect northern species."

Penguins Washing Up in the Tropics

Image: Francisco de Assis holds up a penguin at the Porto da Lenha beach in Salvador, northeastern Brazil, July 25, 2008. Brazilian wildlife authorities confirmed that about 300 penguins have been found dead or alive in recent days along the coast of Bahia state, better known for sunbathers in bikinis than for seabirds native to Antarctica and Patagonia. (AP Photo/Arestides Baptista, A Tarde via Agencia O Globo)

RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil (AP) — Penguins from frigid waters near the bottom of the world are washing up closer to the equator than ever before, Brazilian wildlife authorities said Wednesday.

Adelson Cerqueira Silva of the federal environmental agency said that about 300 penguins have been found dead or alive in recent days along the coast of Bahia state, better known for sunbathers in bikinis than for seabirds native to Antarctica and Patagonia.

Its capital of Salvador is roughly 600 miles (1,000 kilometers) closer to the equator than Miami is and temperatures in the current Southern Hemisphere winter are in the mid-70s (low 20s centigrade).

"This is unheard of. There have even been reports of penguins washing up as far as Aracaju," Silva said, referring to a beachside state capital even closer to the equator.

Silva said biologists believe stronger-than-usual ocean currents have pulled the birds north.

Heat Wave Threatens Midwest Crops

Late-planted corn and soybean crops are in the hot seat this weekend and early next week as a scorching heat wave bears down upon the Midwest and the Great Great Plains Region. Several states in these areas are forecasted to see temperatures well over the 100ºF degree mark. If extreme heat lasts more than a week, moisture stress would severely impact late planted corn and soybean crops because of their shallow root systems. In June, after this year’s historic flooding in the Midwest, weather conditions have to be close to perfect for the remainder of the summer to help the crops that weren’t destroyed to flourish during a shortened growing season.

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