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Tue, 15 Jun 2021
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Fish

Colossal squid a colossal wuss - experts

Te Papa's half-tonne colossal squid was a not a fearsome predator but a colossal wuss, new research has suggested.

wuss squid
©Phil Reid/The Dominion Post
Marine biologist Steve O'Shea with Te Papa's half-tonne colossal squid.

Umbrella

UK: Millions still face danger of flooding catastrophe

Power supplies, hospitals, schools, clean water and emergency services for millions of Britons are ' dangerously vulnerable' to flooding, official figures reveal today.

uk floods
©Reuters
Havoc: The water treatment works at Tewkesbury in Gloucestershire under water last year

Cloud Lightning

Tropical Storm Fay expected to hit Fla. 3rd time

Tropical Storm Fay lumbered offshore Thursday for what was likely to be a brief stay over the Atlantic Ocean's energizing waters after flooding hundreds of homes with torrential rain, trapping residents and leaving much of Florida a soggy mess.

Better Earth

Disproof of Global Warming Hype Published

A mathematical proof that there is no "climate crisis" has been published in debate on global warming in Physics and Society, a scientific publication of the 46,000-strong American Physical Society.

Christopher Monckton, who once advised Margaret Thatcher, demonstrates via 30 equations that computer models used by the UN's climate panel (IPCC) were pre-programmed with overstated values for the three variables whose product is "climate sensitivity" (temperature increase in response to greenhouse-gas increase), resulting in a 500-2000% overstatement of CO2's effect on temperature in the IPCC's latest climate assessment report, published in 2007.

Umbrella

'Catastrophic' Tropical Storm Fay floods hundreds of Fla. homes

Port St Lucie, Fla. - Emergency crews launched airboats into submerged streets Wednesday to rescue central Florida residents trapped by rising floodwaters from a stalled Tropical Storm Fay, which soaked the state for a third consecutive day.

Calling the flooding "catastrophic," Gov. Charlie Crist requested an emergency disaster declaration from the federal government to defray rising debris and response costs. The White House said the Federal Emergency Management Agency was reviewing the request.

Flooding was reported in hundreds of homes in Brevard and St. Lucie counties, some by up to 5 feet of standing water. In three towns, rising waters backed up sewage systems. It wasn't immediately clear how many residents had been displaced or were stranded, but county officials reported making dozens of rescues.

"We can't even get out of our house," said Billie Dayton of Port St. Lucie, as waters lapped at her porch. "We're just hoping that it doesn't rain anymore."

The storm could dump 30 inches of rain in some areas of Florida and the National Hurricane Center said up to 22 inches had already fallen near Melbourne, just south of Cape Canaveral on the state's central Atlantic coast.

Umbrella

Satellites show rainfall rise could soar

Increased rainfall and droughts as a result of global temperature rise could be two to three times more severe than climate models predict. That's according to satellite data analysis by researchers at the University of Reading, UK, and University of Miami, US.

Bizarro Earth

State geologists team up with the Civil Air Patrol to study Mount Hood's unstable slopes

State geologists teamed with the Civil Air Patrol over the weekend on reconnaissance flights around Mount Hood, a dual mission to study landslides on the volcano's unstable slopes and train for possible future volcanic activity.

The flights Thursday through Sunday were part of an effort by the Oregon Wing of the Civil Air Patrol to expand its activities beyond traditional search and rescue and medical support missions to include science and response to natural disasters.

In planes from its fleet of six specially equipped Cessna 182s, the Civil Air Patrol flew geologists from the Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries over strategic locations on Mount Hood. Other planes participated at the same time in other training missions.

Bizarro Earth

US: Earthquake rattles counties in Alabama, explosion reported

A mild earthquake Monday night was strong enough to rattle homes and nerves in parts of Franklin and Marion counties.

The U.S. Geological Survey reported the 2.6 magnitude earthquake that occurred at 8:47 p.m. was centered six miles southwest of Hodges and nine miles north of Hamilton.

"We had a few floors that shook. It was really mild," said Roy Gober, director of the Franklin Emergency Management Agency. "It was strong enough, though, to get some people excited."

Some callers to the Franklin 911 emergency dispatch center reported feeling what they believed was an explosion near their home Monday night.

Gober said only a few people called Monday night to report the earthquake. "We had a storm cloud coming through about that time and a lot of people didn't realize that there had been an earthquake," Gober said. "It was not until Tuesday morning when word got out about us having an earthquake that people really started talking about it."

No damage was reported.

Mike Evans, who lives near Hodges, said he was watching a movie and wearing headphones when the tremor struck.

"I heard it, but I didn't feel it. I thought it was thunder," he said.

Fish

Shipwrecks On Coral Reefs Harbor Unwanted Species

Shipwrecks on coral reefs may increase invasion of unwanted species, according to a recent U.S. Geological Survey study. These unwanted species can completely overtake the reef and eliminate all the native coral, dramatically decreasing the diversity of marine organisms on the reef. This study documents for the first time that a rapid change in the dominant biota on a coral reef is unambiguously associated with man-made structures.

The findings of the study, published in the open-access journal PLoS ONE, suggest that removal of these structures sooner rather than later is key to keeping reefs healthy.

In many areas of the world, coral reef health is declining, but identifying the exact cause of the problem is difficult.

Overgrowth of coral reefs by other species, such as algae, are usually attributed to environmental degradation, but bleaching, disease, damage by typhoons, overfishing, coastal development, pollution, and tourism can cause problems as well.

Bizarro Earth

Livingston and Penn paper: "Sunspots may vanish by 2015″

From the "I hope to God they are flat wrong department", here is the abstract of a short paper on recent solar trends by William Livingston and Matthew Penn of the National Solar Observatory in Tucson. It was sent to me by reader Mike Ward.