Earth Changes

Bizarro Earth

U.S. Geological Survey decides to keep a closer eye on the slumbering giant Glacier Peak volcano

Glacier Peak, elevation 10,541 feet, behind Image Lake in Washington state's Glacier Peak Wilderness
The U.S. Geological Survey has decided to keep a closer eye on the slumbering giant in Snohomish County's wild, scenic back yard. A new study is under way for Glacier Peak, one of the most dangerous but least monitored volcanoes in the country.

Scientists are working to map Glacier Peak and the valleys and peaks to the west - about 482 square miles total - using Light Detection and Ranging, or LiDAR. The technology allows them to get an accurate lay of the land even in remote, heavily forested areas, said Jim Vallance, a research geologist with the Cascades Volcano Observatory.

This helps researchers examine past eruptions, prepare for future volcanic activity and determine the best locations for installing real-time monitoring systems.

The USGS National Volcano Early Warning System classifies Glacier Peak as a "very high threat" volcano, on par with Mount St. Helens or Mount Rainier. The St. Helens eruption in 1980 killed 57 people, destroyed hundreds of homes and wiped out at least 47 bridges and 185 miles of highway.

A large eruption of Glacier Peak could send a deadly wall of mud, rock and glacial melt barrelling through parts of the Stillaguamish and Skagit valleys. These catastrophic flows, called lahars, form the land on which Darrington, a town of about 1,400, sits today. Parts of Arlington and Stanwood might lie in the path of a lahar. Scientists also suspect that Burlington, Sedro-Woolley and Lyman in Skagit County are built on top of debris laid down by Glacier Peak's mudflows tens of thousands of years ago.

Frozen barley crops will raise craft beer prices higher in N. America

Beer prices in North America may rise next year as brewers and maltsters face higher costs after cold, wet weather damaged Canadian barley crops and left farmers and tipplers crying in their beer.

Canada, the world's second-biggest exporter of malting barley, was already harvesting its smallest crop since 1968, before a recent dump of snow and freezing temperatures in Alberta, the biggest barley-growing province.

The shortage will hit craft brewers the hardest, since they typically keep less malt inventory on hand than larger breweries that are also better able to absorb costs.

"Prices (going) up means our costs go up and beer prices ultimately go up," said Neil Herbst, co-owner of Edmonton-based Alley Kat Brewery. "Any small brewery is going to be exposed."

With supplies tight, the premium maltsters pay for high-quality malting barley has grown and that cost will pass along to brewers who are not protected by long-term supply contracts.

Craft brewers, the small breweries that are independently owned, typically have shorter-term supply contracts than big brewers to buy malt, which is a product made from germinating and drying cereal grains.
Snowflake Cold

Signs of the Ice Age - summers shorten in Norway

When it was warmer in the past decade we were told the shortening winters and longer summers were a sign of man made global warming. Now it seems Summers are shortening in the Northern Hemisphere with early snow on both sides of the Atlantic just as the marionettes march world wide to warn of us of the dangers of a [non] warming world many of whom were either not born or too young to remember when we had a wild jet stream. [emphasis added]
Bizarro Earth

USGS: Earthquake Magnitude 6.2 - 95km WNW of Willow, Alaska

Alaska Quake_250914
Event Time
2014-09-25 17:51:17 UTC
2014-09-25 09:51:17 UTC-08:00 at epicenter
61.965°N 151.794°W depth=101.7km (63.2mi)

Nearby Cities
95km (59mi) WNW of Willow, Alaska
126km (78mi) WNW of Knik-Fairview, Alaska
130km (81mi) NW of Anchorage, Alaska
378km (235mi) SSW of College, Alaska
904km (562mi) WNW of Whitehorse, Canada

Scientific Data

Frenzied hyena attack on 5 people in Buhera, Zimbabwe

Buhera South legislator Cde Joseph Chinotimba is overcome with emotion alongside Jimmy Musapukira and Anna Musapukira at the bedside of Noriah Musapukira at Parirenyatwa Hospital yesterday. Noriah was attacked by hyenas in Chin’ombe Village, Chief Nyashanu’s area in Buhera over the weekend.
Five people, including a 10-year-old girl, were seriously injured after they were attacked in separate incidents by a stray hyena in Buhera on Tuesday afternoon.The victims are admitted at Parirenyatwa Hospital in Harare, Mutare General Hospital and Murambinda District Hospital in Buhera where they are reportedly in critical condition.

Noria Musapukira, a Grade 5 pupil at Muchuwa Primary School who had her right eye plucked out, right buttock mauled and has bruises all over her body, is admitted at Parirenyatwa Hospital. She was on her way home with a relative, Melody Mundopa (17), while coming from Mutiusinazita market when the incident occurred at around 5pm. Noria's aunt, Mrs Anna Musapukira, who was travelling with the two from the market, said she separated with them when she passed through Mutiusinazita Township while they headed home.

Weather radar captures a swarm of butterflies over southern Illinois and central Missouri

© Unknown
A swarm of butterflies, winging its way south for the winter, was "spotted" as large blue blobs on weather radar last week over southern Illinois and central Missouri.

"We think these targets are Monarch butterflies," the National Weather Service in St. Louis noted on its Facebook page, which also includes a technical explanation of how the weather service came to this conclusion.

The monarchs were flapping their way south toward their winter home in Mexico. As noted earlier this year, the colorful insects were under stress this spring because of ongoing drought, an unusually cold winter and a lack of milkweed, their primary food source.

This isn't the first time weather radar has "seen" bugs this year: Both grasshoppers in New Mexico and mayflies in Wisconsin were spotted on radar.

Scientists are finding that weather radar is proving useful to track birds, bats and insects. While this information is just clutter to the weather folks, it is just the thing biologists need to study the activities of flying creatures, a science newly christened "aeroecology."

Aggressive black bear reported in Kalispell neighborhood, Montana

An aggressive black bear wouldn't take the hint to leave Monday night after several warning shots were fired in it's direction.

According to the Flathead County Sheriff's office, a caller that lived on Rockwood Road near the Jewel Basin encountered a black bear that was trying to attack his dogs.

The caller also told authorities that the bear had been bothering people in the neighborhood for more than a week.

According to the caller, a family member fired several shots into the air which only angered the bear further.

In spite of the bears demeanor, no one was injured and the bear eventually ran away from the property.

Woman injured in Carpinteria Valley bear attack, California

A Carpinteria Valley rancher was injured when she took on a 300-pound Black Bear Monday in what is called an "unprovoked" attack in an avocado grove.

Emily Miles was on a walk around noon in Rincon Canyon near her home, when her two dogs bolted out of the trees followed by the bear.

In moments the animal was on its hind legs and swinging at the woman who was trying to defend herself. Long red scratches on her back shows where the bear claws shredded Miles' shirt and tore her skin.

Miles tried to get away, turning and running a short distance. That is when the bear chased her down, and took a bite into her upper left thigh. She hit the ground hard, breaking a rib and still vigorously turned over to kick towards the bear while screaming.

"He took me down. He grabbed me. He sunk his teeth into my thigh and knocked me down," said Miles.

Snowflake Cold

Record snowfall for North Karelia, Finland in September

© Juha Parviainen
Villagers in Ilomantsi, eastern Finland, woke to find their cars underneath 25 centimetres of snow on Tuesday.
Thick snowfall covers eastern Finland

Heavy snow fell in parts of North Karelia during Monday night and Tuesday morning, along the border with Russia.

Residents in the small town of Ilomantsi, the easternmost in Finland, woke up to find a blanket of over 25 cm (10 inches) of snow. Authorities warned that roads in the area are very slippery and said there have been reports of minor collisions.

Snowy conditions are forecast to continue into the week.

Fukushima, Japan rocked by two earthquakes in one hour; epicenter near nuclear plants

A pair of moderate earthquakes struck just off the coast of Japan's Fukushima Prefecture Wednesday, close to the nuclear power plants crippled by the March 2011 tsunami. There were no early reports of damage, injuries, or new problems at the nuclear plants. The Japan Meteorological Agency says the first earthquake struck at 9:45 p.m. JST (8:45 a.m. EDT in the U.S.) and registered a magnitude of 5.0. The second quake, a slightly stronger magnitude-5.2 tremor, struck 46 minutes later. Both were centered just off the coast of Fukushima Prefecture, where the Fukushima Daiichi and Fukushimi Daini reactors were severely damaged in the March 11, 2011 tsunami that followed a magnitude-9.0 quake farther offshore.

The damage spawned the worst crisis at a nuclear power plant since the Chernobyl disaster in 1986, and prompted Japan to shut down most of its nuclear power plants. Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) has been working to contain radioactive materials in the years since. TEPCO said there were no new abnormalities caused by Wednesday's quakes, nor any changes to radioactivity levels at the monitoring post there, according to public broadcaster NHK. The company said there were no reported abnormalities at its Tokai Daini nuclear power plant, farther south along the coast of Ibaraki Prefecture. The plant has been shut down since 2011.

Comment: There has been a lot of seismic activity lately. See the following Sott Worldview map of recorded earthquakes in the past month alone: