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Tue, 25 Jan 2022
The World for People who Think

Earth Changes

Cloud Lightning

Changing storms increase coastal erosion

CHANGING storm patterns caused by global warming could dramatically increase the effects of coastal erosion.

Most models of the effects of global warming on coastlines usually assume that rising sea-levels will affect shorelines uniformly along their length. However, this fails to take account of the extra coastal erosion caused by strong waves from higher numbers of tropical storms, says Jordan Slott at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina.


Catastrophic mudslide could last 100 years, say scientists - Land in East Java likely to collapse as thousands flee - Attempts to seal channels will 'probably not succeed'

Mud, gas and boiling water that have been gushing out of the ground in East Java since May, submerging half a dozen villages and 20 factories, could continue for a century with "catastrophic consequences", European experts said yesterday. Efforts to seal the channels through which the mud is escaping are unlikely to succeed, and it is impossible to tell how much fluid remains underground, according to a University of Oslo geology team.


Global Temperature Highest in Millennia

WASHINGTON - The planet's temperature has climbed to levels not seen in thousands of years, warming that has begun to affect plants and animals, researchers report in Tuesday's issue of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The Earth has been warming at a rate of 0.36 degree Fahrenheit per decade for the last 30 years, according to the research team led by James Hansen of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York.

That brings the overall temperature to the warmest in the current interglacial period, which began about 12,000 years ago.


Minor earthquake awakens S.C. residents

BLENHEIM, S.C. - A minor earthquake awakened residents early Monday in northeastern South Carolina, the second quake to hit the area in several days.

The magnitude 3.7 quake hit at 1:44 a.m. and was centered near Society Hill, about 90 miles southeast of Charlotte, N.C., according to the National Earthquake Information Center in Denver.


Arctic Ice the size of Texas melts in one year

MAY BE this is Earth's way of telling President George W. Bush that global warming cannot be ignored: in just one year, the perennial sea ice cover in the Arctic Ocean has shrunk by nearly three-quarters of a million square kilometres, an area comparable to that of Bush's home state of Texas.


Hurricane Katrina's waves felt in California

On 29 August 2005, as hurricane Katrina was rumbling towards New Orleans, a seismic hum more than 1000 times the strength of the average volcanic tremor was felt nearly 3000 kilometres away in southern California. Its source was the hurricane itself.


The threat is from those who accept climate change, not those who deny it

You have to pinch yourself. Until now the Sun has denounced environmentalists as "loonies" and "eco beards". Last week it published "photographic proof that climate change is real". In a page that could have come straight from a Greenpeace pamphlet, it laid down 10 "rules" for its readers to follow: "Use public transport when possible; use energy-saving lightbulbs; turn off electric gadgets at the wall; do not use a tumble dryer ... "


"Sleeper effect" of cigarettes can last for years

Summary: Trying just one cigarette may not be so harmless for non-smokers after all.

Scientists have discovered that a single cigarette has a "sleeper effect" that can increase a person's vulnerability for three years or more to becoming a regular smoker.

Fidler and her team analyzed the impact of smoking a single cigarette on more than 2,000 children aged between 11 and 16 over five years.

Arrow Up

Methane blast kills 41 at Mittal mine in Kazakhstan

A methane explosion tore through a coal mine belonging to Mittal Steel in Kazakhstan on Wednesday, killing 41 people in the country's worst mining accident on record.

The Lenin mine, where the blast occurred just before 9 a.m. (11 p.m. EDT), is one of eight supplying coal to the company's Temirtau factory, one of the world's biggest steel plants.

Grigory Prezent, deputy coal department director of Mittal Steel Temirtau, told reporters at the scene it was "almost certain" that 41 people had been killed.

"Thirty-two bodies have been found. They are being recovered at the moment. Another nine are in a dead-end coal face... But it's obvious that they are dead," he said.

The steel plant in the central region of Karaganda, 200 km (125 miles) south of the capital, Astana, continued to work as normal, a company source said, and the accident would not affect customers.

Cloud Lightning

New theory (and old equations) may explain causes of ship-sinking freak waves

On a stormy April day in 1995, the RMS Queen Elizabeth 2 was sailing in the North Atlantic when the ocean liner dipped into a "hole in the sea." Out of the darkness, a towering 95-foot wave threatened to crash down upon the vessel, which the 70,000-ton ship attempted to surf in order to avoid being pummeled to the bottom of the ocean.