Earth ChangesS

Cloud Lightning

2010 Extreme Weather: Deadliest Year In A Generation

© Unknown
This was the year the Earth struck back.

Earthquakes, heat waves, floods, volcanoes, super typhoons, blizzards, landslides and droughts killed at least a quarter million people in 2010 - the deadliest year in more than a generation. More people were killed worldwide by natural disasters this year than have been killed in terrorism attacks in the past 40 years combined.

"It just seemed like it was back-to-back and it came in waves," said Craig Fugate, who heads the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency. It handled a record number of disasters in 2010.

"The term '100-year event' really lost its meaning this year."

And we have ourselves to blame most of the time, scientists and disaster experts say.

Comment: Interesting how the blame is assigned to those who are struggling daily with the effects of psychopathy at the top (including scientific establishment), and with the influence of those who are in fact responsible for the negligence, mediocrity, political manipulations and lies so prevalent in our nowadays society.

Even though many catastrophes have the ring of random chance, the hand of man made this a particularly deadly, costly, extreme and weird year for everything from wild weather to earthquakes.

Poor construction and development practices conspire to make earthquakes more deadly than they need be. More people live in poverty in vulnerable buildings in crowded cities. That means that when the ground shakes, the river breaches, or the tropical cyclone hits, more people die.


US: Onslaught of Wild Texas Hogs 'Can Do More Damage Than a Bulldozer'

© Photo: iStockphotoIt means business
Texas is being taken over by feral hogs, which run in packs, can weigh up to 375 pounds, and sometimes have tusks. "I think people expect this to be a rural problem," Texas Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples told the AP. Not so! They're in the Dallas suburbs. Out in the country they were shredding cornfields, trampling fruit trees, and devouring the occasional calf (!), but in the city they are uprooting lawns and overturning playground equipment. They're always out there. In the darkness. Waiting. "If you do wake up at night," says Sharie La Vail, whose yard was hit by the hogs, "you look out the window, because you just don't know. I think they outnumber us."

Texas has about 2 million hogs in state, and they cause some $400 million in damage each year. They can break through barbed-wire fences, and they breed so quickly that officials have been stumped about how to stop them from spreading into cities. There was a pig birth-control pill, which failed, and now the Fish and Wildlife Service might let hunters shoot the hogs from helicopters. (Palin family vacay!)


Part Of Costa Rica Disappears Following Japan Earthquake

© Unknown
One of Costa Rica's most important tourist attractions in the the Zona Sur (Southern Zone), the Tómbolo de Punta Uvita, has disappeared following last Friday's 9 magnitude earthquake.

Experts of the Obvservatorio Vulcanológico y Sismológico de Costa Rica (OVSICORI) - Costa Rica's volcanology and seismic institute - believe that the tsunami caused by the earthquake increased tides and possibly a drop in the sea floor.

The Tómbolo or the "cola de ballena" (whale's tail), is a stretch of sandy beach located in the Parque Marino Ballena in Punta Uvita that visitors, during low tide, of the area can walk from the mainland out to sea almost one kilometre.

However, since Friday morning residents of the area and confirmed by experts, the level of water covers most of the Tómbolo even at low time and the only way to reach the tail is by swimming out to it.

Bizarro Earth

6.5 Quake Strikes Sea Floor NW of Vanuatu

Sydney - A magnitude 6.5 earthquake has struck the sea floor northwest of the Vanuatu capital of Port Vila, according to a notice from the U.S. Geological Survey, adding to jitters over tremors in the region following the quake that has devastated parts of Japan.

The notice said the earthquake, at 1:48 p.m. local time, had an epicenter 35 kilometers down, with coordinates 17.5 degrees south and 167.6 degrees east. The location is 77 kilometers northwest of Port Vila, close enough to pose some threat of a tsunami, the USGS said.

"No destructive widespread tsunami threat exists based on historical earthquake and tsunami data. However, earthquakes of this size sometimes generate local tsunamis that can be destructive along coasts located within 100km of the earthquake epicenter," the USGS said in a statement.

Bizarro Earth

Four quakes measuring 5 points occur east of Honshu

Vladivostok, March 17 (Itar-Tass) - There were four earthquakes with magnitudes 5.0 and above at the eastern coast of the Japanese island of Honshu on Thursday morning. The earth shocks' focuses were at depths from 20 to 39 kilometres, said the US Geological Survey.

Bizarro Earth

Japan: Tohoku Earthquake Shaking Intensity

Japan Quake Zone
© Earth Observatory, NASA NASA Earth Observatory Image by Jesse Allen and Robert Simmon, using data from the USGS Earthquakes Hazard Program and Oak Ridge National Laboratory Geographic Information Science and Technology.
On March 11, 2011, the largest earthquake in Japan's modern history struck off the northeast coast, about 130 kilometers (81 miles) east of the mainland region of Tohoku. Initially categorized as magnitude 8.9, the quake was later revised upward to magnitude 9.0 by the Japanese Meteorological Agency (JMA) and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). The event shook buildings and damaged infrastructure hundreds of kilometers away. Closer to the main shock, coastal regions were devastated by the quake and the resulting tsunami.

This map shows the ground motion and shaking intensity from the earthquake at dozens of locations across Japan. Each circle represents an estimate of shaking as recorded by the USGS, in conjunction with regional seismic networks. Shades of pale yellow represent the lowest intensity and deep red represents high intensity. The ground shaking data is overlaid on a map of population density provided by Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

A shaking intensity of VI is considered "strong" and can produce "light damage," while a IX on the scale is described as "violent" and likely to produce "heavy damage." The pattern of shaking appears to run parallel to the offshore subduction trench, with the intensity decreasing more from east to west, as opposed to north and south. Ground motion also seems to be more intense in coastal and riverine areas, where settlements are built on softer sediments and less bedrock.

Bizarro Earth

US: Landslide Shuts Famed Californian Highway 1 as Big Chunk Falls Into The Sea

It is the most scenic highway in America, but a big chunk of California's Highway 1 has fallen into the sea after a landslide.

Stunned drivers watched as a forty-foot section tumbled into the Pacific below after several days of rain.

The landslide, at 5pm on Wednesday, happened 12 miles from Carmel. A two-mile stretch is now closed for repairs which are expected to take several days.

California Highway_1
© Associated PressNo through road: A 40ft section of California's Highway 1 fell into the Pacific after a landslide.

Alarm Clock

Everett, Washington: Land Crack Appears, Neighborhood is Sinking

EVERETT, Wash. -- People living in the Valley View neighborhood of southeast Everett are waiting and watching. A two story house on their block is tilted at a 20 degree angle and could collapse at any moment.

A crack in the earth that first appeared six weeks ago is now threatening about four homes. The City of Everett has "red tagged" the home on Burl which is collapsing. That means no one is allowed near the property.

A "yellow tag" was posted on two other properties where the land is giving way.

A surface slide in the area of Rob and Margaret Lund's house caused their deck and cement patio to completely collapse.

"There is nothing to stop this from happening again and again," said Rob Lund.

Recent heavy rains has caused the sliding to accelerate in the neighborhood. Neighbors said the problem appears to be getting much worse.

"If that house goes, the land will go with it," said Steve Mosman, who lives right next door to the collapsing home. "It would pull our land down with it. We just don't know what is going to happen."

Alarm Clock

Best of the Web: Geologist Predicts Major N. America Earthquake Imminent

Retired USGS geologist Jim Berkland, who is credited with predicting (four days in advance) the 1989 San Francisco Bay area 6.9 magnitude earthquake, has stated that North America looks to be next for a major quake. Berkland says that the months of October March and April are historically the months on which the most powerful earthquakes have struck the San Francisco Bay area. He also links the upcoming 'supermoon' on the 19th and, the next day, the equinoctial tides. A 'top seismic window', according to Berkland, is developing between the 19th and 26th of March. Berkland also implies that massive recent fish kills at Redondo beach and Acapulco are not a result of the Japan quake or its aftermath, but rather signs (changes in magnetic field) of a coming quake on the Western seaboard of North America.

Bizarro Earth

US: Did the Earth Shake in St. Augustine this Morning?

© First Coast News

St. Augustine, Florida -- The ground shook briefly this morning, but nobody seems quite sure why.

First Coast News has received several calls, as has the St. Johns County Sheriff's Office, about two tremors felt this morning around 9:30.

Sheriff's deputies are among those who reported feeling the shaking, and the Associated Press reported the tremors were felt in Flagler County as well.

A geologist at the University of Florida said nothing showed up on any earthquake detecting equipment.

The cause of the shaking is speculation at this point, but the sheriff's office said the sensation was stronger near the ocean.

No damage has been reported.

Did you feel the tremor this morning?