Earth ChangesS


Panic Stations! Sea Levels Are Rising: It's Time to Decide Which Coastal Cities Are Worth Saving

© Nature
Since April Fool's Day expired, there has been nothing but bad news about Earth's various ice shelves circulating through the news. Antarctica's Wordie and Larsen ice shelves? The first is simply gone, and the second is disappearing fast. How about the Connecticut-sized Wilkins shelf? It has fragmented into polar pieces after the ice tether holding it to the Antarctic peninsula snapped this week, signaling that the Earth is undergoing some profound changes.

So what do melting ice shelves a world away have to do with the rest of us? That is where the fools come in.

Comment: Complete nonsense; info-entertainment journalism at best

See also: Antarctic sea ice up 43% since 1980: Where is the Media? and US Navy Physicist warns of possibly 'several decades of crushing cold temperatures and global famine', for a more probable scenario - based on real data and not computerised models programmed to deliver politicised results - facing mankind.

Bizarro Earth

Fascinating satellite image which reveals how the Earth moved in Italy tragedy

This intriguing image is being scrutinized by Italian scientists trying to unravel exactly how the Earth moved during Italy's devastating quake last week.

Pictured: An 'interferogram' shows the Earth's deformation pattern over the L'Aquila area in central Italy following the devastating quake last week
The picture shows shock waves radiating from the epicentre of the massive 6.3 seismic event in the medieval town of L'Aquila.

Its rainbow-coloured interference patterns were deduced using 'synthetic aperture radar' (SAR) data from the European Space Agency's (ESA) Envisat and the Italian Space Agency's COSMO-SkyMed satellites.


If Bees Disappear, We'll All Be Stung

Some people think of bees as something to be feared. But without bees, humans would not be able to survive. It's not just that they provide us with honey and wax; they are also one of the world's most important pollinators. (In fact, bees native to Canada do not produce honey; honeybees are imports - and not all bees sting!)

Close to 90 per cent of the world's plants rely on pollinators for fertilization and reproduction - including many of the plants we use for food. Beyond providing food, plants anchor soil to prevent erosion and fuel the nutrient cycle by decomposing and absorbing nutrients. Bees aren't the only pollinators; butterflies, hummingbirds, and bats, among other animals, provide pollination. But bees are the most common pollinators. If we lose the bees, we lose the plants, and if we lose the plants, well...


Quake scientist predicts Iran will shake in late April

We wrote last year about the attempts of two Chinese researchers to predict earthquakes several weeks in advance using unusual cloud formations. One of the researchers, Guangmeng Guo of the Remote Sensing Center at Nanjing Normal University in Jiangsu province, eastern China, recently emailed me with an update.

He says his team has detected the same unusual clouds above Iran. They predict that there will be a magnitude 5.0 to 6.0 earthquake at the end of April in southern Iran.

Comment: See: Italian earthquake expert's warnings were dismissed as scaremongering.

Arrow Down

At least 30 feared dead in Peru landslide

Up to 60 people are feared dead after a landslide engulfed 25 houses in the region of La Libertad in northwestern Peru, the country's RPP radio said on Friday.

The tragedy occurred in the Sanchez Carrion Province, some 750 km (466 miles) from the capital Lima.

Arrow Down

All bodies recovered after Kyrgyz landslide

Kyrgyzstan landslide
© Unknown
The bodies of the 16 people who died when a landslide hit a village in south Kyrgyzstan's Jalal-Abad province have been recovered by rescue workers, an emergency services spokesman said on Friday.

The landslide occurred early on Thursday, and buried five homes in the village. Nine children were among the dead.


22 dead in earthquakes in Afghanistan

© Agence France-PresseReduced to rubble: An Afghan man stands amid the destroyed houses in Sherzad, following an earthquake in the districts of Khogyani and Sherzad in Nangarhar province, on Friday.
Bhezad Kheil - Two earthquakes shook eastern Afghanistan early Friday, collapsing mud-brick homes on top of villagers while they slept and killing at least 22 people.

The quakes hit four villages in the high mountains of the eastern province of Nangarhar, about 50 km from the Pakistan border.

Afghanistan's Hindu Kush mountain range is hit by dozens of minor earthquakes each year. Many Afghan homes are made of dried mud, so even moderate earthquakes can cause many deaths and major damage to infrastructure. The poverty-stricken nation is also battling a strengthened Taliban insurgency and another four people were killed in attacks on Friday.

Shafiqullah, from the village of Bhezad Kheil, said 21 people were buried in a cemetery following the quake, including two of his young neighbors. Nijad, 10, and Sima, 7, both died after the roof above their second-story bedroom collapsed, raining down wood beams and chunks of mud, he said.

"There were two shakes," said Shafiqullah, 30. "The first shake was very strong, when everyone was asleep. The first shake destroyed everything. Then the crying and the shouting started."


Two more quakes hit Indonesia

Two more earthquakes, both 5.3 magnitude, hit South Pagai on the Mentawai Islands of Indonesia's West Sumatra early Friday, weather officials said.

The quakes followed a 6.0-magnitude tremor Thursday that shook island residents but caused no injuries or damage, as also was the case on Friday, the Jakarta Post said.


USGS: 6.0 quake strikes off coast of Chile

The U.S. Geological Survey is reporting that a strong earthquake struck off the coast of Chile.

The USGS says the temblor had a magnitude of 6.0 and hit a little after 10 p.m. local time Thursday (0200 GMT Friday).


Earthquakes reported in Israel, Lebanon, West Bank

Ten small earthquakes hit northern Israel, southern Lebanon and parts of the northern West Bank Friday afternoon, the largest of which measured 4.2 on the Richter scale.

The Geophysical Institute of Israel (GII) said the largest of the quakes occurred at 2:04pm. No damage has been reported.