Earth Changes


California baby seals dying from a form of cancer that could be caused by radiation

While officials continue to tell us everything is fine, and they essentially act like the Pacific Ocean is a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser for all the radiated water being continuously dumped into it from the crippled Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, we are getting reports of baby seals dying of cancer off the coast of California.

Of the 46 weaned baby seals who have died in a San Francisco Bay rescue center this summer, it has been determined that the cause of death in 16 cases has been Disseminated Intravascular Coagulation — a condition that does not just spontaneously occur but is a factor found underlying another condition, things like tumors and blood cancers, but especially acute promyelocytic leukemia.

Comment: Acute promyelocytic leukemia is a subtype of acute myelogenous leukemia (AML), a cancer of the white blood cells. According to Wikipedia, "ionizing radiation exposure can increase the risk of AML. Survivors of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki had an increased rate of AML, as did radiologists exposed to high levels of X-rays". Radiation has been pouring into the ocean, into the earth below, and into the air for over four years since the Fukushima disaster and TEPCO has been dumping highly radioactive water into the Pacific Ocean.

Arrow Down

Food giant General Mills warns of global food shortages as a result of climate change

© James Akena / Reuters
Food giant General Mills has announced a commitment to reduce its greenhouse emissions by 28 percent by 2025, while also asserting that human-caused climate change could lead to food shortages worldwide.

In a Sunday statement, General Mills announced a plan to reduce its absolute greenhouse gas emissions across its value chain, "from farm to fork to landfill."

The company said that it has "long been committed to being part of the solution on climate change," according to its website, and CEO Ken Powell said climate action is as much a good business strategy as it is a corporate responsibility gesture.

"We think that human-caused greenhouse gas causes climate change and climate volatility and that's going to stress the agricultural supply chain, which is very important to us," Powell said in an interview with the Associated Press. "Obviously we depend on that for our business, and we all depend on that for the food we eat."


Rare twister photographed over Lancashire, UK

© Tony Disley
The 'twister' captured above Martin Mere
A funnel cloud has been spotted above the Lancashire countryside.

The unusual twister-like cloud was spotted over Martin Mere nature reserve, near Ormskirk, on Monday by reader Tony Disley.

A funnel cloud is a cone-shaped cloud which extends from the the base of a cloud towards the ground without reaching the earth.

They are formed in the same way as a tornado, building around a localised area of intensely low pressure and are typically associated with the formation of cumulonimbus cloud (also known as thunderstorm clouds).

Crucially, a funnel cloud does not reach the earth's surface, at the point it reaches land it becomes a tornado, or if it reaches a body of water it becomes a waterspout.

Cloud Lightning

Two girls killed after being hit by lightning bolt while swimming in the sea in Mexico


Emergency services were called and the beach was cordoned off by authorities while the bodies were brought back to shore
Two teenage girls were killed and a third injured when they were hit by lighting while swimming in the sea in Mexico.

The tragedy happened off Carmen beach, in the municipality of Solidaridad, in the south-east Mexican state of Quintana Roo.

Victim Paula Cantoral Cordova, 13, was with her school friends Andrea Hernandez Sandoval, 13, who also died, and Maria Eugenia Aceves Pulido, 13, at one of the most popular tourist beaches in Mexico.

As stormy weather started to close in, there was a loud bang and a flash and two of the teenagers were instantly killed.


Elephant rams safari truck in Hwange, South Africa

A British traveler in South Africa captured GoPro camera footage of an annoyed elephant taking a swipe at a safari truck filled with onlookers.

The video, posted to Vimeo by Kid_GoPro, shows the elephant make angry-sounding noises while ramming the safari truck filled with wildlife watchers.

The truck takes the hit and spins around before the elephant storms off,
apparently satisfied that his point was made.

The uploader said "no one was harmed other than the safari truck" during the incident in Hwange, South Africa.


Hurricane Fred makes history in the Atlantic

Hurricane Fred is making history in the Cape Verde Islands this morning. It is the first hurricane to hit the islands in more than 100 years. Records, dating to 1908, show no developed hurricanes hitting the small island nation of half a million people.

In 1961, Hurricane Debbie formed on the western side of the island chain and proceeded west.

What's interesting is the fact that no hurricanes have struck the island nation, even though many of us have heard of it because of the weather term "Cape Verde Hurricane Season." That's the time of year (from late August through early October) when tropical waves move off the western African coast, developing into hurricanes after passing over the Cape Verde Islands.

Hurricane Fred is an anomaly, as it quickly achieved hurricane status Sunday night. Dangerous flash flooding and wind gusts to 90 m.p.h. are expected today before it moves out to sea, eventually weakening in the days to come.

Comment: Another hurricane record has just been set in the Pacific ocean, with THREE simultaneous Category 4 hurricanes occurring.

Cloud Precipitation

Half-foot of rain hits Charleston, South Carolina

When an unusually high tide — called a “King Tide” — coincided with more than six inches of rain in Charleston on Monday — even the alligators got caught up in the flooding.

When an unusually high tide — called a "King Tide" — coincided with more than six inches of rain in Charleston on Monday — even the alligators got caught up in the flooding.

During Monday — now officially the 5th wettest on record in the town — part of an embankment collapsed off Interstate 526 in Charleston as heavy rain led to flash flood warnings in the Lowcountry.

Heavy rain caused the collapse near the intersection of I-526 and Dorchester Road according to the National Weather Service.

Firefighters had to carry children home though flooded streets after buses dropped the students off in still-flooded neighborhoods in the afternoon.


Snowflake Cold

Coldest winter in nearly 50 years for Tasmania, Australia


Snowfall in early August reached sea level for the first time in several decades.
The Bureau of Meteorology has confirmed what many Tasmanians already suspected, it has been the coldest winter in nearly 50 years.

With winter coming to a close officially ahead of the first day of spring on Tuesday, the bureau's Debbie Tabor revealed it was the sixth coldest winter on record.

"It's been below average temperature and rainfall for Tasmania during this winter," she said.

"Preliminary analysis is all indicating that it's the sixth coolest on record, that's resulting in the coolest winter since 1966."

Heavy snow in August reached sea level for only the seventh time since 1986.

The dump in early August closed several schools and roads and stranded people in their cars.

Snow fell again in late August again closing roads and creating traffic chaos.

The snow was a welcome boost for the ski season at Mount Field and Ben Lomond but made it .

Alarm Clock

Triple threat: Earthquakes rattle California, Oklahoma, Oregon

© fotandy/Shutterstock
COMPTON, Calif., Aug. 31 (UPI) -- No injuries or major damage was reported Monday after earthquakes rattled cities in California, Oklahoma and Oregon.

Around noon local time, a 2.9-magnitude earthquake rattled a location two and a half miles southwest of Compton, Calif. This report comes after news of a 2.6-magnitude earthquake that struck at 5:11 a.m. local time Sunday along the Hayward Fault in California's East Bay. Local residents reported feeling the quake, which is the latest in a series of rumbles along the fault scientists said could be precursors to a large temblor coming soon, KRON in San Francisco reported.


Almost all seabirds are eating plastic

© Britta Denise Hardesty
Toothbrushes, dolls arms, balloons, cigarette lighters and bottle caps are just some of the items on a seabird's dinner menu these days, say researchers.
Ninety per cent of the planet's seabirds are having plastic for dinner, a new study has found.

The findings are from the first global assessment of plastic ingestion by seabirds, published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Toothbrushes, cigarette lighters, bottle caps and even a doll's arm are just some of the items on a seabird's dinner menu these days, says Dr Chris Wilcox of CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric Research.

Previous research suggests there are as many as 580,000 pieces of plastic polluting each square kilometre of the ocean at any one time. And there have been increasing reports about it being found in the guts of marine organisms including turtles, fish, dolphins and seabirds.

To see how pervasive the plastic threat was to seabirds across the planet, Wilcox and colleagues compared maps showing the changing density of plastic over time with maps showing the distribution of seabird species.

They also reviewed published studies of plastic ingestion carried out in 135 species of seabirds between 1962 and 2012. For example, previous studies on Lord Howe Island have found that around 10 per cent of the body weight of some birds is plastic. By combining all this data, the scientists were able to develop a model that links the amount of plastic a seabird consumes to the amount it's exposed to.

"As birds encounter more plastic they'll have more plastic in their gut and conversely if they encounter less they'll have less," says Wilcox.

Using the model the researchers estimate that today, a "shockingly high" 90 per cent of seabirds are ingesting plastic. The researchers also found that the threat was relevant to 99 per cent of seabird species.

"If you use that model and predict forward we conclude that by about 2050, plastic will be in about all seabird species on the current trend."

The research suggests plastic ingestion is likely to have its highest impact in the Tasman Sea, southeast of Australia, where there is a high number of seabirds and a high density of plastic pollution, says Wilcox.