Earth ChangesS

Bizarro Earth

Utah earthquake causes mine collapse, 6 Miners Missing

A coal mine collapsed Monday in central Utah, trapping six miners, less than 20 miles from the epicenter of a minor earthquake, authorities said.

The Genwal mine reported a "cave-in" at 3:50 a.m., an hour after the magnitude 4.0 earthquake, the Emery County sheriff's office said.

"Rescue workers are on scene trying to locate six miners that are unaccounted for," the sheriff's office. The miners are in the Crandall Canyon Mine.


Sunspot abundance linked to heavy rains in East Africa

A new study reveals correlations between plentiful sunspots and periods of heavy rain in East Africa. Intense rainfall in the region often leads to flooding and disease outbreaks.

The analysis by a team of U.S. and British researchers shows that unusually heavy rainfalls in East Africa over the past century preceded peak sunspot activity by about one year. Because periods of peak sunspot activity, known as solar maxima, are predictable, so too are the associated heavy rains that precede them, the researchers propose.

"With the help of these findings, we can now say when especially rainy seasons are likely to occur, several years in advance," says paleoclimatologist and study leader Curt Stager of Paul Smith's College in Paul Smiths, New York. Forewarned by such predictions, public health officials could ramp up prevention measures against insect-borne diseases long before epidemics begin, he adds.

The sunspot-rainfall analysis is scheduled to appear on 7 August in the Journal of Geophysical Research - Atmospheres, a publication of the American Geophysical Union.

Bizarro Earth

Quake rattles Utah-Colorado border; May have been caused by Bureau of Reclamation

PARADOX, Colo. - No damages or injuries were reported after a minor earthquake rattled the small town of Paradox, near the Colorado-Utah border.

Cloud Lightning

Eight die in Vietnamese storms

Flash floods triggered by a tropical storm have killed eight people in Vietnam, while 14 others remain missing and another was killed by a falling tree.

In the Central Highland province of Daklak, four people were killed on Sunday and 14 others are still missing, including a family of five whose house was washed away by flash floods, said provincial disasters official Phan Thi Thu Hien.


Dubrovnik Croatia menaced by major fire

A state of emergency has been declared in the Croatian city of Dubrovnik, whose suburbs are threatened by a major forest fire.

The mayor of the medieval port city said emergency services were ready to evacuate residents from the hillside districts above the city centre.


Montana Gov. Declares Fire Emergency

HELENA, Mont. - A state of emergency was declared in Montana on Sunday because of wildfires, including one northeast of Missoula that crept to within a mile of some of the 200 nearby homes that were evacuated.

Arrow Down

Prediction of major hurricanes lowered

The United States' leading storm forecaster has slightly lowered the number of hurricanes expected to form in the Atlantic basin this year.

Colorado State University Professor William Gray is still predicting an above-average hurricane season but he expects only four storms to be classified as major or intense, the Orlando Sentinel reported Friday.

His latest prediction of major or intense storms is one less than Gray and his team forecast in late May.

At that time, Gray predicted a 2007 hurricane season with 17 named storms and nine hurricanes, five of which would be intense, Category 3 or above.


Millions left homeless by Asia's monsoon floods

Death toll could hit thousands as abnormal rain swamps Bangladesh, Nepal and northern India, bringing threat of mass starvation and waterborne disease.

Women and children were seen screaming for help from treetops yesterday as monsoon floods struck three countries in south Asia, leaving at least 280 people dead and 20 million washed out of their homes.


India: Police fire on flood victims, one killed.

©Ranjeet Kumar
SWAMPED: An aerial view of a part of Darbhanga district in North Bihar on Saturday.

The State Government on Saturday owned the blame for the police firing on flood victims in which one person was killed and three others were injured in Madhubani on Friday.

A two-member administrative team, comprising Home Secretary Afzal Amanullah and Additional Director General CID Yashwant Malhotra, held the police firing "unwarranted" and placed Havildar Aditya Narain Singh, who opened fire, under suspension.

Cloud Lightning

Iceland: Eruption imminent?

A series of small earthquakes around Upptyppingar north of Vatnajökull since this February has prompted speculations from geologists that a volcanic eruption could be imminent in the area.