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Tue, 22 May 2018
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Tremor swarm at Yellowstone continues - began in February

CC BY 2.0 / Michael McCarthy / Yellowstone-4193
© CC BY 2.0 / Michael McCarthy / Yellowstone-4193
Laying underneath the tranquil and beautiful geysers, waterfalls, and mountains of Wyoming lies the Yellowstone caldera. The supervolcano has been worrying some for decades, but now experts fear an eruption could happen soon after reporting a "spate of tremors."

According to WMD, a spate of four mini-tremors in the area following a period of "rest" has raised fears among some that the supervolcano is about to blow. Although the Yellowstone supervolcano hasn't erupted for 631,000 years, scientists have been diligently working to understand the last eruption so they can more accurately predict when a big one will happen again.

The most recent quake came on March 11 when a small 1.5 tremor took place beneath the surface. The strongest one, a 1.8 magnitude earthquake, came just hours before this, and people are concerned that Yellowstone could be about to blow.

Comment: See Also:


Late night 5.2 earthquake strikes Galapagos Archipelago

galapagos earthquake march 2018
Parts of Ecuador are along the dreaded Ring of Fire.
A tremor measuring 5.2 in magnitude hit Ecuador's Galapagos Islands, the Euro-Mediterranean Seismological Center (EMSC) reported.

The epicenter of the earthquake was located 14 kilometers off the coast Fernandina island. The tremor struck at about 10:00 p.m. local time. There have been no reports of damage or injuries so far.

Fernandina Island is the third largest island of the Galapagos. The island is a shield volcano that has been erupting since April 11, 2009. A shield volcano is a type of volcano usually built almost entirely of fluid lava flows.

Parts of Ecuador are along the dreaded Ring of Fire - an area in the Pacific Ocean which has a large number of seismic and volcanic activity.


Rapid earthquakes spark fears of fiery eruption at Mount Etna, Italy

Mount Etna, one of the word's most active volcanoes, sparked fears of a fiery eruption on Thursday after a rapid succession of powerful tremors rocked the fiery mountain.

Residents of the ancient city of Catania on the eastern shores of Sicily were struck with panic after several shocks reverberated through Etna in just five minutes of each other.

The terrifying Etna which only sits 18miles from the coastal town, was rocked by three shallow tremors on its southern slopes.

The National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology (INGV) of Catania recorded the shocks in the early morning hours.


Earthquake-hit Papua New Guinea left with dead fish, eels and prawns in polluted rivers

dead fish
Contaminated drinking water and disrupted rivers are making the aftermath of several powerful earthquakes in Papua New Guinea even worse.

Dead fish, eels, prawns and other debris are clogging silt and mud-laden waterways, causing stench and unsafe water, while properties have also been damaged.

The situation is being described as "disastrous" by the Governor's Office in the badly-hit Gulf Province.

In a public notice, the office stated: "Given the magnitude of the earthquake and its resulting damage upstream in Southern Highlands and Hela Province, consequential effects and changes in the rivers systems downstream is disastrous ...


Rare M5.6 earthquake strikes Mozambique-Malawi border, is followed by M5.2

Rare M5.6 earthquake hits Mozambique followed by M5.2
© Google/TW
The first, registered by the USGS as M5.6, hit at 08:49 UTC at a depth of 6.4 km (4 miles) and was followed by M5.2 at 09:52 UTC at a depth of 10 km (6.2 miles). The M5.6 earthquake is expected to have a medium humanitarian impact based on the magnitude and the affected population and their vulnerability.

According to the USGS, the epicenter was located 25.9 km (16.1 miles) NE of Nsanje (population 21 774) and 80.4 km (49.9 miles) S of Mulanje (population 16 483), Malawi.

There are 3 000 000 people living within 100 km (62 miles) and 8 800 within 5 km (3.1 miles).

Some 22 000 people are estimated to have felt very strong shaking, 63 000 strong, 195 000 moderate and 4 783 000 light.

Comment: Earthquakes, volcanoes, sinkholes, landslides and gaping fissures, they just keep coming with a greater frequency and seem to be becoming ever more massive:


Huge earthquake strikes Ring of Fire: Papua New Guinea hit by shallow 7.5 magnitude quake - at least 100 dead (UPDATE)

map map
Papua New Guinea has been rocked by a huge 7.5magnitude earthquake just moments after a smaller seismic event struck Japan, increasing fears of a natural disaster impacting the dangerous region dubbed the 'Ring of Fire'.

The 7.5 magnitude earthquake struck the heart of the island near the near the Southern Highlands area, with tremors felt across the nearby region.

The phenomenon hit at a depth of two kilometers at roughly 4am local time (6pm GMT).

It is currently unclea rif any damage or injuries were cause by the substantial siesmic event.

Comment: On the 26th the local newspaper the Post-Courier reported:
A huge 7.6 magnitude earthquake severely hit Hela and Southern Highlands last night.

Although communication networks into the two provinces have been cut off, reports through satellite communication by Hela Provincial Administrator William Bando reveal that about 10 people have been killed while thousands of properties have been destroyed.

Mr Bando said it is a very severe disaster as many lives have reportedly been lost.

It is believed that the earthquake started around Kiunga and affected lives and properties in Hela and Southern Highlands while other provinces also felt the effect of the quake.

Mr Bando said the Komo Airport is believed to be damaged as half of the airfield has been destroyed.

The PA is now meeting with the department of inter-government relations in relation to the disaster.

According to new information received at (11:30am) the quakes have resulted in homes and properties being buried as the ground opened up and sank. Reports are yet to be confirmed but the situation looks severe.
Update - 27th of February, 2018:

More than 30 people are now feared dead in the 7.5 magnitude earthquake that shook Papua New Guinea on Monday, local media outlets have reported. Hela Provincial Administrator William Bando noted that the earthquake led to the appearance of landslides and sinkholes. Over 300 people have been reportedly injured. Numerous properties have suffered damage and the electricity has been cut off in some of the affected areas.

Update - 5th of March, 2018:

The latest via the Loop news website:
As of midday today, 55 people have been confirmed dead in parts of Hela and Southern Highlands provinces.

This is according to the Catholic Bishops' Conference based on reports received from the Mendi Diocese in SHP.

General Secretary for Catholic Bishops' Conference of Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands, Father Victor Roche, said coordination amongst authorities, churches and parties on ground is key during this trying time.

Initial reports provided by the Mendi Diocese following the earthquake confirm 20 deaths in Hela Province and 35 in parts of Mendi.

These figures account for just fractions of both provinces while attempts to update these statistics are ongoing.

Father Victor said coordination from the government right down to people on site at the impacted areas is crucial to enable swift coordination of relief efforts.

"Schools, houses, clinics, roads and bridges have been affected and people are finding it difficult to move around and relief efforts are also hampered by this, so it is good that we coordinate more," Fr Roche stated.
Update - 6th of March, 2018:

RNZ reports:
The death toll in Papua New Guinea following last week's magnitude 7.5 earthquake has risen to 75.

The Highlands region was badly damaged in that tremor, and continues to be rattled by aftershocks as high as magnitude 6.

Much of remote Hela and Southern Highlands provinces were cut off by massive landslides, which has hampered the delivery of much-needed aid.

PNG journalist, Scott Waide, has just visited the region closest to the epicentre, including a village where 11 people died when the mountainside came crashing through.

He said he heard of a story about a boy whose whole family was killed in the quake.

"There's a chap who is in grade 5. He goes to school in Margarima - Margarima is very far away from his village. He came back to ask his parents for school fees [but] on his way back his whole family was wiped out - his siblings, his mother, his father and an uncle have all died. So he's the only one in the family left."
Update - 9th of March, 2018:

Local newspaper the Post Courier reports:
More than 100 people have lost their lives and many others remain unaccounted for 10 days after the 7.5 magnitude earthquake struck the resource rich provinces of Southern Highlands, Hela, Enga and Western Province.

Prime Minister Peter O'Neill said this yesterday after he visited the remote disaster devastated communities and people on Wednesday.

"Authorities have estimated that over 100 have lost lives and or are missing, families who are stranded in remote communities because our accesses to them especially the road links have been closed off by landslips," he said.

"As we are clearing up the existing landslips, new ones are coming up because the aftershocks are causing new landslips so it is a huge challenge which will require a lot of effort and time so that we are able to take the relief supplies to these communities." He said the work of rebuilding the affected communities is going to be difficult will take some time.

"Our government's efforts are being supported by many countries like China, the Chinese government is one of the large contributors to that, the Australian government, New Zealand government, organisations like Oil Search, PNG LNG, many Chinese businesses right throughout the country and off course many of our development partners like the World Bank and ADB (Asian Development Bank) who have supported the relief effort," he said. Mr O'Neill said this yesterday when receiving a cheque of K1.006 million from the China Enterprise Association, comprising China's state-owned companies currently operating in Papua New Guinea, towards the disaster relief efforts.

"China and PNG are very historic friends, there are many generations of Chinese who have lived and work and families have lived in Papua New Guinea and will continue to be part of our country's history for many years to come so all these support and contributions is very much appreciated by our families who are suffering the loss," he said.

"We are trying to help rebuild their lives and the funds that you contributed will immediately go to providing food, water, medicine and shelter to many of these communities who are left homeless and without food and water.

"K1 million is a lot of money in these difficult economic times and to raise that kind of money in a matter of days is something we truly appreciate."


Shallow magnitude 7.1 earthquake hits east of Papua New Guinea island

An earthquake of magnitude 7.1 struck 135 km (85 miles) east of the town of Rabaul, on the eastern tip of Papua New Guinea's island of New Britain, at 3.39 a.m. on Friday, local time (1739 GMT on Thursday), the U.S. Geological Survey said.

Although the quake was under the seabed at a relatively shallow depth of 10 km, the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said there was no threat of a tsunami.

A quake of magnitude 7.5 struck the rugged highlands of the Papua New Guinea mainland on Feb. 26, killing more than 100 people.

Source: Reuters

Comment: See also: Huge earthquake strikes Ring of Fire: Papua New Guinea hit by shallow 7.5 magnitude quake - at least 100 dead (UPDATE)


Papua New Guinea struck by shallow 6.7 magnitude earthquake 9 days after deadly temblor - at least 18 killed (UPDATE)

A 6.7 magnitude earthquake struck Papua New Guinea just after midnight local time Wednesday morning, jarring an area that's still recovering from a 7.5 tremor in late February.

The U.S. Geological Survey said the quake struck at 12:13 a.m. local time Wednesday morning (9:13 a.m. EST Tuesday morning) about 70 miles southwest of Porgera. The temblor struck at a depth of about 20 miles and was located about 20 miles southwest of the Feb. 26 quake, which killed at least 67 people, according to the Guardian.

It wasn't immediately known if the latest earthquake caused additional damage or injuries. The U.S. Tsunami Warning System said it did not expect a tsunami to be generated from the quake.

Comment: Update - 7th of March, 2018:

Reuters reports:
A magnitude 6.7 earthquake struck Papua New Guinea's mountainous Southern Highlands on Wednesday killing at least 18 people, an official said, a week after a larger quake flattened villages and killed at least 55 people.

The tremor, shortly after midnight local time, struck just 31 km (19 miles) southwest of the epicentre of last Monday's magnitude 7.5 quake that has left government and aid agencies scrambling to provide emergency supplies to the remote region.

Australia and New Zealand said on Wednesday they would increase aid to Papua New Guinea.

Australia will deploy three helicopters this week to deliver aid, while New Zealand will send a second military plane to distribute medical equipment, hygiene kits and tarpaulins.

Wednesday's quake was the most severe of a series of aftershocks that have rattled the resource-rich region, about 600 km (370 miles) northwest of the capital Port Moresby.

William Bando, the administrator of Hela Province, said initial reports put the death toll from the aftershock at 18.

"It appears Hides was hardest hit. We haven't heard about potential casualties there yet, but it is a big village with many people," he added.

Manasseh Makiba, Papua New Guinea's Vice Minister for Petroleum & Energy who represents parts of Hela Province in parliament, said victims were still being found.

"People are still being extracted from mud. People are still being taken to hospitals," he said.

Local media outlets reported the death toll from the original quake had risen to 75,
after government officials said previously that 55 people had been killed.

A spokeswoman at Papua New Guinea's National Disaster Centre said on Wednesday that authorities were finalising a final report into the casualties from the first quake.

James Komengi, a United Church project officer, speaking from Tari, the capital of quake-affected Hela province, said his church's assessment and response centre had counted up to 67 deaths in that province alone.

Aid efforts are being hampered as rescue workers struggle to reach the highlands area as many roads are either badly damaged or blocked.

The International Red Cross warned the situation could deteriorate if heavy rains hit the region.

"We are anxious to reach communities while there is a lull in what is usually a season of heavy rain. A big downpour could bring landslides in hillsides already destabilised by the earthquake, cause floods and contaminate water," said Udaya Regmi, Director the International Red Cross in Papua New Guinea.

The Red Cross said its initial assessments indicate that as many as 143,000 people could have been affected, with an estimated 500 people injured and 17,000 people displaced from their homes. Even in more accessible areas of the country, health facilities have been damaged.

ExxonMobil, which shut its $19 billion PNG liquefied natural gas (LNG) project after the first quake, said on Wednesday its facilities in Hides, where it runs a gas conditioning plant, were safely shut in. All employees and contractors were safe.
See also: Huge earthquake strikes Ring of Fire: Papua New Guinea hit by shallow 7.5 magnitude quake - at least 75 dead (UPDATE)


Shallow magnitude 6.0 aftershock rattles Papua New Guinea

Strong aftershocks have rocked Papua New Guinea's remote and rugged highlands, as the death toll climbed to 55 from a 7.5-magnitude earthquake a week ago, and is expected to rise further.

Three aftershocks of magnitude greater than 5 shook the mountainous Southern Highlands, about 600km northwest of the capital Port Moresby early on Monday, the US Geological Survey said, including a shallow magnitude 6 quake.

"We haven't slept. It's been shaking all through the night," William Bando, provincial administrator of Hela Province, said by telephone from Tari, about 40km from the site of the shocks.

"What we experienced this morning could have caused more damage, but we don't know ... it almost threw me out of bed."

Comment: See also: Huge earthquake strikes Ring of Fire: Papua New Guinea hit by shallow 7.5 magnitude quake - at least 55 dead (UPDATE)


Bosavi volcano in Papua New Guinea dormant for centuries shows recent signs of activity

Mt Bosavi

Mt Bosavi
For centuries, Mt Bosavi in Nipa-Kutubu electorate in Southern Highlands Province has never shown signs of volcano existence.

However, the recent earthquake which destroyed many of the villages including food gardens and an environment in both the Hela and SHP has strike Mt Bosavi to show shines of its volcano existence.

Former PNG basketball representative player Colin Pine speaking from Kutubu said Mt Bosavi is showing signs of the volcano and the entire villages along the mountain are in fear it can blow anytime.

"Mt Bosavi is showing signs of a volcano and as we speak we are seeing smoke building up at the top of the mountain. We had never seen Mt Bosavi as a volcanic mountain but now it's showing signs," Pine said.