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Mon, 20 Mar 2023
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Earth Changes


A killer in the bat cave

Corpse upon corpse they lie, a carpet of emaciated, fungus-ridden carcasses. Where once healthy animals hung in slumber from the cave roof, now there is a mass grave on the floor. It is a scene that is repeated throughout the eastern US, from Vermont to West Virginia. America's bats are in crisis, under threat from a mysterious killer.


US oil company donated millions to climate sceptic groups, says Greenpeace

Report identifies Koch Industries giving $73m to climate sceptic groups 'spreading inaccurate and misleading information'

A Greenpeace investigation has identified a little-known, privately owned US oil company as the paymaster of global warming sceptics in the US and Europe.

The environmental campaign group accuses Kansas-based Koch Industries, which owns refineries and operates oil pipelines, of funding 35 conservative and libertarian groups, as well as more than 20 congressmen and senators. Between them, Greenpeace says, these groups and individuals have spread misinformation about climate science and led a sustained assault on climate scientists and green alternatives to fossil fuels.

Greenpeace says that Koch Industries donated nearly $48m (£31.8m) to climate opposition groups between 1997-2008. From 2005-2008, it donated $25m to groups opposed to climate change, nearly three times as much as higher-profile funders that time such as oil company ExxonMobil. Koch also spent $5.7m on political campaigns and $37m on direct lobbying to support fossil fuels.

Comment: Once again, the British Guardian is the stalwart defender of the indefensible. This "$73 million to conservative and libertarian groups", namely right-wing political groups that jumped on the Climategate bandwagon after the man-made global warming nonsense went into free-fall, is pittance against the $7 billion (and counting) fraud reaped by the "carbon trading" scam whose existence wholly depends on the theory that humanity's carbon emissions are responsible for "warming" the planet:

European fraudsters steal $7B in carbon credit scam
Fraud within Europe's carbon credit trading system has cost taxpayers more than $7 billion in the last 18 months, European police said Friday.
In fact, the above list of financial backers supporting skepticism supports our contention that the political backlash against "anthropogenic global warming" has been co-opted and will be channelled for political gain:
So why are Neocons supporting the global warming skeptics? It is obviously not because they value the truth. Instead, they seem to want to be free to pollute the atmosphere as much as they like by taking advantage of the shift in public opinion Hayward labels "apocalypse fatigue." In other words, there's not a problem, so what's the problem? And the Neocons aren't the only cons using the Climategate revelations for their own benefit. Sarah Palin, Dominionist front-woman and psychopath, is also jumping on the bandwagon. [...]

With several competing factions operating behind the scenes of power and policy-making, Climategate, if properly managed, will provide the Tea-Party/Right-wing/Dominionist takeover with tremendous energy for slingshotting a Palin into the White House, and for Harper or a similar drone to extend control over the Canadian parliament. At that point, it will be unnecessary to cover up their religious extremism and the mask will come off.

Bizarro Earth

Mysterious Whale Die-Off Is Largest on Record

Mass death among baby right whales has experts scrambling to figure out the puzzle behind the largest great whale die-off on record.

Observers have found 308 dead whales in the waters around Peninsula Valdes along Argentina's Patagonian Coast since 2005. Almost 90 percent of those deaths represent whale calves less than 3 months old, and the calf deaths make up almost a third of all right whale calf sightings in the last five years.

"This is the single largest die-off event in terms of numbers and in relation to population size and geographic range," said Marcela Uhart, a medical veterinarian with the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS). She represents an associate director in Latin America for the WCS Global Health Program.

Bizarro Earth

Pakistan: Hailstorm hits twin cities

Islamabad - An unusual weather phenomenon caused widespread hailstorm in the twin cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad on Monday afternoon. Following duststorm in which the wind velocity touched 96 kilometres per hour in Rawalpindi and 55 kilometres per hour in Islamabad, thick grey clouds swarmed the skies and after a slight spell of drizzle the hailstorm struck.

Meteorological Office Director Dr. Mohammad Hanif told The News that hailstorms in the transitional period between winter and spring is not unusual because of sudden change in temperature. "But the slightly unusual phenomenon was that the hailstorm that struck the twin cities engulfed a vast area."

Usually hailstorms in such transitional periods remain confined to small pockets but on Monday it was widespread covering vast areas over Rawalpindi and Islamabad. At many places, the intensity of the hailstorm was unusually high," he said.


Snow storms and high winds leave 20,000 homes without power across Scotland


A car is pushed in the snow at Denny, Stirlingshire
Twenty thousand homes were left without power today as high winds, snow storms and rain battered Scotland and ice gripped overhead power lines.

Ten lorries were also stranded on the M90 as temperatures plunged below freezing. Police urged drivers to take care on some of the water-swamped roads this evening and forecasters predicted the cold snap would last for another two days.

The 20,000 homes without power are in central and southern Scotland, said ScottishPower.

Ayrshire was worst hit, with 7,000 homes in Largs and Fairlie affected.

A spokesman said some of the 20,000 homes affected throughout today were only without electricity for a few minutes.

Bizarro Earth

Magnitude 6.6 - Andaman Islands, India Region

Andaman Earthquake
Earthquake Location
Tuesday, March 30, 2010 at 16:54:48 UTC

Tuesday, March 30, 2010 at 10:24:48 PM at epicenter

13.616°N, 92.858°E

45.4 km (28.2 miles)

215 km (135 miles) N of Port Blair, Andaman Islands, India

405 km (250 miles) SSW of Pathein (Bassein), Myanmar

825 km (510 miles) W of BANGKOK, Thailand

2310 km (1440 miles) SE of NEW DELHI, Delhi, India

Cloud Lightning

Massachusetts, Rhode Island Declare Rain Emergencies

Massachusetts and Rhode Island declared emergencies and Boston recorded unprecedented rainfall as storms pounded the U.S. Northeast for a second day today.

Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick mobilized about 1,000 National Guard troops because of the threat of "beach erosion, major flooding and widespread road closures," according to a statement on his Web site yesterday.

"In some cases there has been two months of rain in the matter of a few days," Tom Kines, a senior meteorologist for AccuWeather Inc., said in a telephone interview. "When you get that much rain over a few-day period, that spells trouble."

Boston's Charles River is set to break the record crest of 9.24 feet reached in August 1955 after two hurricanes dumped more than 26 inches of rain on the region in less than two weeks, according to the National Weather Service.


The Sun Points Radio-Active Sunspot at Earth

© Discovery News
As the sun continues to ramp up in activity after a long period in the doldrums, solar astronomers have been treated to an up-tick in sunspot numbers, solar prominences and flares.

And now, radio astronomers have joined the fun, listening to the roar of a particularly "noisy" sunspot currently pointing in our direction.

Not all sunspots emit strong radio emissions, but sunspot 1057 certainly isn't shy. As reported by SpaceWeather.com, a radio astronomer in New Mexico received a mix of Type III and Type V radio emissions:
"It was sunspot 1057. All day long it had been producing small radio bursts around 21 MHz. Then, at 1813 UT, it let loose a big one. The burst only lasted a minute, but it saturated the radios." --Thomas Ashcraft, radio astronomer.


Undersea volcano threatens southern Italy

Marsili Volcano
© International Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology
These images of the Marsili volcano show magnetic and gravity anomalies, which researchers say increase chances of a collapse.
Rome - Europe's largest undersea volcano could disintegrate and unleash a tsunami that would engulf southern Italy "at any time", a prominent vulcanologist warned in an interview published Monday.

The Marsili volcano, which is bursting with magma, has "fragile walls" that could collapse, Enzo Boschi told the leading daily Corriere della Sera.

"It could even happen tomorrow," said Boschi, president of the National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology (INGV).

"Our latest research shows that the volcano is not structurally solid, its walls are fragile, the magma chamber is of sizeable dimensions," he said. "All that tells us that the volcano is active and could begin erupting at any time."

Bizarro Earth

Australia: New South Wales facing huge locust plague

© Brad Markham
Locust eggs discovered on a property near Parkes in September 2009
There're fears NSW could be facing its worst locust plague since 2004.

Heavy rains have triggered a surge in locust activity. The pest has already ravaged early oat crops in the state's south. Some of the biggest clusters of baby locusts ever seen in NSW have been found in the far-west around Tibooburra.

The state's locust coordinator Simon Oliver is urging all landholders to check their paddocks for the pest.

"We've had good rain across NSW over the past three months," he says. "That's led to strong pasture growth and as a result the locusts have reinvigorated themselves. We're now finding large numbers in most parts of western NSW."