Earth Changes

Bizarro Earth

Abandoned mines in southern Arizona spill orange sludge caused by heavy rainfall from Hurricane Odile

© AP Photo/Arizona Republic, Gooch Goodwin
This undated photo shows orange sludge leaking from the Trench Camp Mine near Patagonia, Ariz. Heavy rain from Hurricane Odile has caused the two abandoned mines to spill orange sludge into waterways that lead to the popular Patagonia Lake in southern Arizona.
A popular tourist attraction in southern Arizona is at risk of being contaminated with orange and brown sludge that spilled from two abandoned mines near Patagonia. The Trench Camp and Lead Queen mines overflowed late last month because of heavy rainfall caused by Hurricane Odile.

The Arizona Department of Environmental Quality has issued a notice of violation to an Asarco trust that owns the Trench Camp Mine near Patagonia, Arizona. "We've talked to our consultants, and we're gonna do what the state requires us to do," Jay Steinberg, who runs the trust, said Wednesday.

A resident near the town of Patagonia noticed the sludge at the end of September, first at the Lead Queen Mine and later at the Trench Camp one, said Wendy Russell, coordinator for the Patagonia Area Resource Alliance. Both waterways lead to Sonoita Creek, which runs off into Patagonia Lake, the site of the state park.

"This is an ongoing hazard to our community's water supply," Russell said, adding that Patagonia Lake State Park is a tourist attraction. "Folks fish and swim there."

Wild boar and pig attacks in Vietnam - 2 in hospital in same week

© Minh Thu
People in the central province of Nghe An tie up a feral pig that attacked a group of locals on August 3, 2013.
Pigs sent two people in the central province of Quang Binh to the hospital in the same week.

Nguyen Thi Hoai, 54, was given emergency surgery and a blood transfusion at the Vietnam-Cuba Dong Hoi hospital after a feral pig she was raising mauled her while she was feeding it.

The woman suffered deep injuries to her thigh and buttocks that led to the heavy blood loss.

She said the hog was a hybrid between a wild hog and a domesticated pig.

Ho Van Thay, 52, suffered injuries to both arms and legs when a different wild boar attacked him while he was working in a field on the edge of the jungle.

Wild boars, bison and elephants have been attacking people and damaging fields in the area, recently, raising questions about the extent of human encroachment into their jungle habitats.
Cloud Precipitation

Hurricane Gonzalo pounds the Bermuda coast with high waves, driving rain and gusting winds- expected to be a 'dangerous hurricane'

© REUTERS/NASA/Alexander Gerst
Hurricane Gonzalo is seen over the Atlantic Ocean in this NASA image taken by astronaut Alexander Gerst from the International Space Station October 17, 2014.
Hurricane Gonzalo began pounding the Bermuda coast with high waves, driving rain and gusting winds on Friday as one of the strongest storms to hit the tiny Atlantic island chain, forecasters said.

Gonzalo was swirling about 100 miles (165 km) south-southwest of the British island chain and had weakened slightly, with sustained winds dropping to 125 miles per hour (205 kph), the U.S. National Hurricane Center said.

The eye of the Category 3 storm was forecast to pass within 30 miles of Bermuda on Friday evening, with hurricane force winds extending up to 60 miles (95 km) from the center.

By mid-afternoon streets were empty as the high winds reaching tropical storm force of 40 mph (64 kph) bent back palm trees on Harrington Sound in the middle of the islands, prompting the government to close a major causeway bridge linking the main island to the east end.
Bizarro Earth

Japan's massive 2011 earthquake may trigger more, and larger, volcanic eruptions

© AFP Photo/Yoshikazu Tsuno
Snow-covered Mount Fuji is seen from Tokyo, Japan, on February 16, 2014
Japan's massive 2011 earthquake may trigger more, and larger, volcanic eruptions over the next few decades, perhaps even that of Mount Fuji - but predicting them remains close to impossible, a volcano expert said on Friday.

The nation last month suffered its worst volcanic disaster in nearly 90 years when Mount Ontake, its second tallest active volcano at 3,067 meters (10,062 feet), suddenly erupted, raining down ash and stone on hikers crowding the summit.

The eruption killed 56 people, exceeding the deaths in the 1980 eruption of Mount St Helens in the United States. Seven victims remain missing, and recovery efforts have been suspended until the spring.

Japan may well be moving into a period of increased volcanic activity touched off by the 9.0 magnitude earthquake of March 11, 2011, said Toshitsugu Fujii, a volcanologist and professor emeritus at the University of Tokyo.

"The 2011 quake convulsed all of underground Japan quite sharply, and due to that influence Japan's volcanoes may also become much more active," Fujii told reporters.

"It has been much too quiet here over the last century, so we can reasonably expect that there will be a number of large eruptions in the near future."
Cloud Grey

U.S. study finds tornadoes coming in 'swarms' rather than isolated occurrences

© Reuters/Gene Blevins
A severe thunderstorm wall cloud is seen over the area of Canton, Mississippi in this April 29, 2014 file photo.
Tornadoes in the United States are increasingly coming in swarms rather than as isolated twisters, according to a study by U.S. government meteorologists published on Thursday that illustrates another trend toward extreme weather emerging in recent years.

Looking at tornado activity over the past six decades, the study in the journal Science found the total number of tornadoes annually remaining rather steady, averaging 495. Since the 1970s, there have been fewer days with tornadoes but plenty more days with many of them, sometimes dozens or more.

On the list of the 10 single days with the most tornadoes since 1954, eight have occurred since 1999, including five since 2011. That year alone had days with 115, 73, 53 and 52 twisters.

The meteorologist who led the study, Harold Brooks of the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Severe Storms Laboratory in Norman, Oklahoma, said emergency management agencies and insurers should be prepared to deal more often with days with lots of tornado damage.
Black Cat 2

Bobcat attacks and kills family dog in Ahwatukee, Arizona

Spotting a bobcat in the desert or the mountains is cool but not in your own neighborhood.

In one Ahwatukee neighborhood, this is too close for comfort.

A bobcat was sighted near homes and may be responsible for attacking and killing a beloved pet.

Neighbors got a picture of a bobcat up in a tree in an Ahwatukee Foothills Neighborhood.

It may be the bobcat that attacked Marie Parsey's little Pomeranian Griffey.

Last week her husband let Griffey out in the back yard, when he didn't come back after five minutes her husband John went outside, and he was attacked by something large.

Bear mauls Armenian man

A bear attacked a resident of the Armenian city of Noyemberyan when the man was searching for lost calves.

Samvel Mamyan was hospitalized with wounds on his body, head, legs and hands, a representative of Noyemberyan medical center told Armenian

"He received outpatient treatment and was vaccinated against rabies. Samvel was discharged from hospital and will continue to be treated at home," said Daniel Amirakyan, the head of the surgery department.

The incident took place in a pasture located away from the city Noyemberyan on Tuesday morning. Samvel Mamyan came across a bear while searching for lost calves. Samvel's dog attacked the bear, and he escaped.

"Thanks to his dog, Samvel was not wounded severely," Amirakyan added.

Beached pygmy whale on Indian Shores beach euthanized, Florida

Wildlife officials had to euthanized an ill whale that was beached Tuesday morning on Indian Shores beach.
Wildlife officials had to euthanized an ill whale that was beached Tuesday morning on Indian Shores beach.

The 6½-foot-long Kogia pygmy sperm whale had several small shark bites, but the reason for its condition was unknown, said Kelly Richmond, a spokeswoman with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

Richmond said the female whale was lethargic and thin for its size.

A necropsy was planned.

The FWC received a call about the whale at 7:51 a.m. and biologists were dispatched by 8:30 a.m. to assess the animal's condition, Richmond said.

Onlookers on the beach gathered to observe as marine experts from the commission and Clearwater Marine Aquarium tended to the whale for about two hours.

It was later determined the animal could not be saved.

Early winter falls on Oslo, Norway

© Via Twitter@TrekEarth
Snow in Oslo, Norway, on Oct. 16, 2014.
Oslo, Norway, had an early taste of winter on Thursday as snow returned.

Snow began mixing with rain early Thursday morning in Oslo and continued to do so through early Friday morning.

With temperatures at or slightly above freezing, it was a wet snow that fell.

Views and News from Norway reported that snow covered the ground in the hills around Oslo Thursday morning, while the four-lane E6 highway between Oslo and Moss turned white.

Thursday marked Oslo's first occurrence of snow since early May and the city's coldest day since early April. Temperatures were held to only 2.3 C (36 F).

"The combination of a slow-moving storm system and cold air pulled in on the backside of another storm that brought snow to Moscow on Thursday led to the snow in Oslo," stated Meteorologist Tyler Roys.

Children and residents should not get ready to spend the weekend making snowmen or shoveling driveways.

The Netherlands: 'Historically hot' weekend

Saturday and Sunday will be warm with temperatures in the south east of the country reaching 23 to 24 degrees, according to RTL Nieuws.

Saturday may see the highest temperatures for October 18 since measuring began in 1901, RTL writes. In 1921 De Bilt registered 22.9 degrees and 19.7 in 1997.