Earth ChangesS


UN downgrades man's impact on the climate

Mankind has had less effect on global warming than previously supposed, a United Nations report on climate change will claim next year.

The UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change says there can be little doubt that humans are responsible for warming the planet, but the organisation has reduced its overall estimate of this effect by 25 per cent.


U.S. Senate rejects earthquake repair money

HONOLULU (AP) _ The U-S Senate has cut 19 (m) million dollars in proposed earthquake assistance for Hawaii.

That has left the state scrambling to find other sources of federal money to assist agricultural water systems on the Big Island that are still recovering from the October 15th earthquakes.


The Consequences of Damming Rivers in the Developing World

A review of author Jacques Leslie's new book, which lays bare the high environmental and social price that people in the developing world often pay for damming their rivers.


Austria's hills aren't alive with sound of skiing

For the Austrian village of Hochfilzen it was a disaster. As it prepared to welcome the world's best cross-country skiers and shooters for a biathlon event this weekend there was a problem: no snow.

With climate experts confirming that the Alps are in the grip of the warmest temperatures for 1,300 years villagers borrowed some snow from a nearby mountain, trucking in snow from Grossglockner, Austria's highest peak, 20 miles away. Over five days lorries deposited the snow in the village, allowing a 6-metre wide by 45cm deep (20ft x 17inch) track.


Scientists say a 'silent earthquake' is overdue

SEATTLE - Seismology experts and geology researchers are literally waiting for the earth under the Pacific Northwest to move at any moment. The earthquake will be strong but it's certainly not going to knock plates off the wall or homes off their foundations. Experts say it will last a long time - about two weeks - and that's why you won't feel it.

The seismic event the scientists are waiting for is called a deep tremor or silent earthquake and the scientists have known about them for less than a decade.


Volcano erupts on Russia's Kamchatka peninsula

The Karymsky volcano on the Kamchatka peninsula in Russia's Far East has increased its activity, spewing ash up to an altitude of 6,900 meters (22,637 feet), the local emergencies center said Monday.


Scientists fear results of collapsed ice shelf - The Ross Ice Shelf, a raft of ice the size of France, could collapse quickly, triggering a dramatic rise in sea levels, scientists warn

A New Zealand-led drilling team in Antarctica has recovered three million years of climate history, but the news is not good for the future.

Initial analysis of sea-floor cores near Scott Base suggest the Ross Ice Shelf had collapsed in the past and had probably done so suddenly.

The team's co-chief scientist, Tim Naish, said the sediment record was important because it provided crucial evidence about how the Ross Ice Shelf would react to climate change, with potential to dramatically increase sea levels.

"If the past is any indication of the future, then the ice shelf will collapse," he said.


Philippines typhoon kills more than 100

The fourth super-typhoon in as many months has battered the Philippines, setting off a volcanic mudslide and widespread flooding that killed at least 109 people and left dozens more missing, officials said today.

Glen Rabonza, head of the national Office of Civil Defence, said 200 body bags were being shipped to the disaster zone at the request of provincial chiefs. With power and phone lines brought down, helicopters were carrying out aerial surveillance of cut-off areas.

"Our rescue teams are overstretched rescuing people on rooftops," Rabonza said after President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo was briefed on the storm's aftermath.


Hundreds feared dead in Philippine mudslides

At least 400 people are feared dead after Typhoon Durian swept across the central Philippines, causing flash floods and burying villages in waves of muddy volcanic ash and huge rocks.

The country's civil defence office said today that 198 people had died, with 260 missing, but the death toll was expected to rise.

"There are a lot of conflicting reports but, looking at the trend, we could have about 300 to 400 people dead by tonight," Richard Gordon, head of the local Red Cross, said in a television interview.


Earthquake hits Sumatra

A strong earthquake, measuring 6.6 on the Richter scale, has hit the Indonesian island of Sumatra but there are no immediate reports of casualties or damage.