Earth ChangesS

Cloud Lightning

Hurricane Ike pounds Texas coast

Galveston - Hurricane Ike bore down on the Texas coast late Friday with driving rain, crashing waves and fierce gusts, threatening to rattle the skyscrapers of America's fourth-largest city, shut down the heart of the U.S. oil industry and obliterate towns already flooded with waist-high water.

Though nearly 1 million people evacuated coastal communities in the days leading up to the storm, tens of thousands ignored calls to leave and decided to tough it out. But as wind-whipped floodwaters began crashing into coastal homes, many changed their minds. Galveston fire crews rescued more than 300 people who were walking through flooded streets, clutching clothes and other belongings as they tried to wade to safety.


Texas prepares for an ominous Hurricane Ike

Authorities in the Houston area and along the Southeast Texas Gulf Coast ordered hundreds of thousands of people to evacuate Thursday as Hurricane Ike lumbered toward the coast and threatened to grow even stronger.


With Ike, size matters for killer storm surge

Hurricane Ike's gargantuan size - not its strength - will likely push an extra large storm surge inland in a region already prone to it, experts said Thursday.

Cloud Lightning

Nepal: Eight more die as diarrhea turns into epidemic in flood relief camps

At least eight more persons including three children who were displaced by the Koshi floods and taking shelter in various government run camps in Sunsari and Saptari district, have died of high fever and diarrhea in the past 24 hours.

The Himalayan Times quoted Sunsari District Police Office as saying that five-year-old Nitesh Kumar Kamat and Mohamad Usman, 50 - both Haripur-8
residents - died of fever in Sunsari on Sunday. Babita Rai, Jasira Khatun, Sitadevi Hindawal and Taphail Khan of Haripur-2 had died of dysentery Saturday night.

Magic Wand

Insanity! Citing faith and fate, some choose to ride out Ike

SURFSIDE BEACH, Texas - At first, even the threat of "certain death" was not enough to persuade Bobby Taylor to flee this small town directly in the path of Hurricane Ike.

Red Flag

Cyprus: Water Crisis Worsens

dry dam
©Margo Aldridge
Dry: The Arminou Dam

Cypriots have been warned that the island is running dry and that careful conservation of water is now even more important, as it will take two more months before additional sources are available.

Life Preserver

Ireland: Bees rescue plan pledged as apple industry suffers

Agriculture Minister Michelle Gildernew has pledged to draw up a strategy to rescue Northern Ireland's vanishing bee populations.

bee rescue
Agriculture Minister Michelle Gildernew is to draw up a plan to rescue bees

Bizarro Earth

Cyprus: Farmers warn of end of agriculture

If farmers don't see state aid or rain by the winter, Cyprus will cease to have a farming sector, one farmer warned parliament yesterday. Speaking before the House Agriculture Committee, general secretary of the National Agricultural Organisation of Cyprus, Michalis Lytras told deputies that the last time Cyprus suffered as bad a drought was in 1973. "But at least back then we had plenty of ground water. Now, we don't. If we don't see rain this season, you are looking at the end of agriculture," he said.


Why Ike Could Be Texas' Worst Nightmare

As Hurricane Ike revs up again over the Gulf of Mexico, residents of coastal Texas, especially Houston and Galveston, are preparing for the arrival of the monstrous storm, which could be the most devastating that the Lone Star State has seen Hurricane Alicia came ashore in 1983, causing nearly $6 billion in damage and 21 fatalities.

Ike is huge. Hurricane-force winds extend out 120 miles (195 kilometers) from the storm's center, and tropical storm-force winds reach out 275 miles (445 km), both measurements exceeding what's seen with many storms. Ike could reach major hurricane status as a Category 3 before it makes landfall late Friday or early Saturday morning somewhere along the Texas coast.

Galveston, Texas after 1900 hurricane
The unnamed Category 4 hurricane that slammed into Galveston, Texas Sept. 8, 1900 remains the deadliest ever to hit the United States, having killed at least 8,000 people (estimates vary) and leveling virtually the entire town.

And right now it looks like that somewhere will be the Houston/Galveston area.

Cloud Lightning

Airlines curtail flights to Texas cities in path of hurricane Ike

Airlines prepared to curtail service Friday to Texas cities in the path of hurricane Ike and offered to waive ticket-changing fees for passengers whose flights were scrubbed.

Aviation officials in Houston said flights at George Bush Intercontinental Airport would be suspended at 2 p.m. CT on Friday and 3:30 p.m. CT at the smaller Hobby Airport.

Houston-based Continental Airlines Inc., whose largest hub is at Bush Intercontinental, said it might also stop flights early Friday afternoon at other airports along the Gulf. It said service in Houston and any other affected cities was likely to resume Sunday.