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Sat, 16 Jan 2021
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Earth Changes
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Seismograph

6.1 magnitude earthquake strikes near Isangel, Vanuatu

earthquake graph
© Phil McCarten / Reuters
An earthquake with a magnitude of 6.1 jolted 146 km SSE of Isangel, Vanuatu at 05:01:04 GMT on Friday, the U.S. Geological Survey said.

The epicenter, with a depth of 117.74 km, was initially determined to be at 20.735 degrees south latitude and 169.8807 degrees east longitude.

Seismograph

Magnitude 6.3 earthquake hits off New Zealand's Kermadec Islands

earthquake graph
© Phil McCarten / Reuters
The Kermadec Islands are located in the South Pacific Ocean approximately 800-1,000 km northeast of New Zealand's North Island, and are uninhabited, except for the permanently manned Raoul Island meteorological station. The islands are part of New Zealand, though not subject to any region.

A powerful earthquake occurred on Friday in the sea near New Zealand's Kermadec Islands at a depth of 222.3 km. The magnitude of the tremor is 6.3, according to the United States Geological Survey (USGS).

According to reports, the earthquake kick was registered at a distance of about 935.0 km northeast of the settlement of Ngunguru, New Zealand.

No possibility of a tsunami has been reported at the moment.

Comment: A couple of days ago a 6.2-magnitude earthquake hit the same Kermadec Islands region.


Snowflake Cold

Cold wave freezes parts of China

cold china
A strong cold wave has swept multiple places across China on Wednesday, with some regions seeing heavy snow and thick fog.


Snowflake Cold

Beijing freezes as temperature sinks to lowest since 1969

Temperatures in Beijing fell to the lowest level since 1966 this week.
© AFP/Noel Celis
Temperatures in Beijing fell to the lowest level since 1966 this week.
Temperatures in the Chinese capital plunged to their lowest for more than five decades on Thursday (Jan 7), as Beijing was hit by gale-force winds and bitter conditions.

On Thursday morning the mercury dropped to minus 19.6 degrees Celsius, breaking a previous cold weather record set in 1969.

The cold reading was the lowest since 1966, when temperatures in the city fell to minus 27.4 degrees Celsius.

Thousands took to social media to complain about the city's weather, with the hashtags "How cold is this winter?" and "Beijing's temperature reaches the lowest since 1966" both trending topics on Weibo and garnering a collective 240 million views.

"I heard the wind shouting at me: I want to kill you," wrote one.


Comment: 20 weather stations in China reach or break lowest temperatures recorded for December, affecting 80% of the country


Snowflake

205 roads blocked by heavy snow in Himachal Pradesh, India - up to 30 inches deep

A man removes snow from a car after the town
© PTI)
A man removes snow from a car after the town received fresh snowfall, at Keylong in Lahaul-Spiti District.
The tribal areas and other higher hills of the state received fresh snowfall while lower and middle hills witnessed widespread rains disrupting normal life. As many as 205 roads were closed due to heavy snow in the state.

The minimum and maximum temperatures rose marginally even as the sky remained heavily overcast and icy winds, accompanied by showers, blew across the region. The local Met office has warned of dense fog at isolated places in lower and middle hills in Una, Bilaspur, Hamirpur, Kangra and Mandi districts till January 9 and predicted rain and snow at isolated places in middle and high hills on January 8, followed by dry weather.


Galaxy

Novel atmosphere phenomenon 'STEVE' makes ANOTHER appearance over Finland

STEVE over Finland
© Rayann Elzein
Last night, STEVE visited Finland. The purple ribbon of light, which is not an aurora, appeared over Utsjoki in the Finnish Lapland. "This is very unusual," says Rayann Elzein, who photographed the apparition.

"I've been chasing auroras in Arctic Finland for nearly a decade, and this is only the second time I have seen STEVE here at 70 degrees N," says Elzein.

Comment: STEVE (Strong Thermal Velocity Enhancement) is a relatively recent discovery, first spotted and photographed by Canadian citizen scientists around 10 years ago. It looks like an aurora, but it is not. See also: Discoveries like STEVE are just the tip of the ice berg when it comes to the unusual phenomena that reflects the shift occurring on our planet - and even further afield:


Attention

500 people evacuated from the area around the Merapi volcano, Indonesia after thick clouds of smoke expelled

Merapi volcano
© Travel News Twitter
Merapi volcano
At least 500 people were removed from the island of Java, Indonesia, today after the erupting Merapi volcano began to expel thick clouds of smoke, the Indonesian Geology Agency said.

The authorities evacuated an area of five kilometres around the volcano.

"So far the potential danger does not exceed five kilometres," said Hanik Humaira, director of the Indonesian Geology Agency, in a statement.

Activity at the Merapi, 400 kilometres southwest of Jakarta, began to increase last Thursday, according to the Indonesian Geology Agency, which indicated that the volcano was erupting.


Tornado2

Waterspout filmed off the coast of the Philippines

waterspout
Onlookers recorded as a waterspout spun off the coast of the Zamboanga City, Philippines, on Jan. 3.


Cloud Precipitation

50,000 people affected by floods in Batticaloa, Sri Lanka

floods
The Disaster Management Centre (DMC) in Sri Lanka reports severe weather, including high winds, lightning, heavy rain and flooding has affected over 50,000 people across the country since the start of the year.

Most of those affected were in Batticaloa, Eastern Province, where 12 division have seen flooding since 03 January 2021. Sri Lanka's Meteorological Department reported 142.4mm of rain fell in Batticaloa in 24 hours to 04 January.

Over 18,000 people have been affected by floods in Kattankudy, around 13,000 in Manmunai North and 8,000 in Eravur Pattu. DMC report 8 houses have been damaged across Batticaloa district as a result. No displacements or injuries were reported.


Umbrella

Deadly floods in North Sulawesi and West Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia - at least 3 killed

Floods in Bima Regency, Indonesia, 05 January
© BPBD Bima Regency
Floods in Bima Regency, Indonesia, 05 January 2021.
Disaster authorities in Indonesia report at least least 3 people have died in recent flood incidents in North Sulawesi and West Nusa Tenggara Provinces. Meanwhile flooding in Lhokseumawe City in Aceh Province has damaged over 2,000 homes.

National Disaster Agency BNPB reported flash flooding in Bima Regency, West Nusa Tenggara Province from 05 January 2021. At least 2 people have died and around 90 homes were damaged.

The previous day, high intensity rain falling on unstable ground triggered landslides and flash flooding in soil conditions in the Sangihe Islands in North Sulawesi Province. BNPB reported the sub-districts of Tahuna, Kendahe, Maganitu, South Maganitu, Tabukan Selatan Tengah and Tabukan Selatan Tenggara were all affected. At least 1 person died, over 200 buildings damaged and 223 families displaced. Flood waters were up to 1.5 metres deep in some areas.