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Fri, 23 Feb 2018
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Bizarro Earth

Powerful 6.0 earthquake hits city of Kerman in north eastern Iran

Kerman Earthquake
An earthquake with a magnitude of up to 6.3 has hit eastern Iran near the city of Kerman, seismological centers report.

The earthquake struck at a shallow depth of 10km (6.2 miles), some 60km (37 miles) from the city of Kerman, which has a population of over 800,000, including suburbs.

The quake's magnitude was initially reported at 6.3 by the US Geological Survey (USGS), cited by Reuters, and at 5.9 by the European-Mediterranean Seismological Center (EMSC). Both later revised it to 6.0.


Rare 4.1 magnitude earthquake hits near Dover, Delaware

Earthquake map
A 4.1 magnitude earthquake has rumbled the Philadelphia region Thursday afternoon.

The United States Geological Survey says the tremor struck along the Delaware Bay near Dover, Delaware. It's a short distance north of the Dover Air Force Base.

The quake was shallow with a depth of 5 miles. It was first recorded with a magnitude of 5.1, but was revised to 4.1 around 5:10 p.m.

Comment: The USGS said it received more than 6,500 responses within an hour of the quake from people who felt the temblor throughout the Mid-Atlantic - as far south as suburban Washington, D.C., and as far north as the Poughkeepsie, New York, area.

USGS geophysicist, Cheng Shengzao, said the East Coast quake was surprising, "This is wild. It's not often that this happens."

Paul Caruso, a geophysicist with the USGS's earthquake information center in Colorado, said he didn't expect any significant damage from the small quake, which he described as unusual.

"I was talking with the other seismologists and we said, 'Wow, we don't ever remember a quake in Delaware," he said.

See also:


Very strong shallow earthquake of magnitude 6.4 hits central Mid Atlantic Ridge

Most important Earthquake Data:

Magnitude : 6.4

Local Time (conversion only below land) : Unknown

GMT/UTC Time : 2017-11-30 06:32:50

Depth (Hypocenter) : 10 km


'Megathrust' earthquake and devastating tsunami could hit New Zealand, scientists warn, as hazardous fault awakens

Hikurangi subduction zone

Geologists claim the dangerous Hikurangi subduction zone - running offshore from the top of the South Island to Gisborne in the north - has begun to move
New Zealand could be potentially hit by a massive magnitude 9.0 earthquake followed by a "towering" tsunami, scientists warn. According to the researchers, a 2016 quake that hit the area reawakened a hazardous fault that was believed to be dormant.

The Hikurangi subduction zone - a deep trench in the Earth's crust running along the eastern shore of New Zealand's North Island - is now active and could trigger magnitude 8.5 earthquakes, which would be far more devastating that the one that hit the islands in 2016, a group of scientists from the GNS research institute warn. The earthquakes are also likely to be followed by tsunamis that could reach New Zealand's coast within mere minutes, the geologists add.

"We need to think Japan 2011, basically, because if our whole plate boundary ruptured, it would be a magnitude 9 earthquake," Ursula Cochran, an earthquake geologist at the GNS, told the local media. "The Hikurangi subduction zone is potentially the largest source of earthquake and tsunami hazard in New Zealand, but there is still much to learn about it," GNS Science said in a statement earlier.

Subduction zones similar to the one located near New Zealand are areas in which tectonic plates collide, with one being forced over the top of one another, creating what the geologists call a "megathrust." In case of the Hikurangi subduction zone, the Australian plate is overhanging the Pacific one.

Earlier earthquakes that took place in such zones include the devastating 2011 earthquake followed by tsunami in Japan that claimed lives of thousands of people and triggered the Fukushima nuclear disaster, as well as a 2004 Indonesia magnitude 9.0 earthquake that left as many as 250,000 people dead.

A disaster that could potentially hit New Zealand would affect many heavily populated areas, such as Napier, Gisborne, Nelson, Wellington, Blenheim and Palmerston North. All those areas are located too close to the Hikurangi subduction zone for the scientists to issue a timely warning.

Comment: See also:


Earth moves for residents of Darwin, Australia as earthquake strikes in the Banda Sea more than 700km away

Banda Sea quake
© twitter/BOM_NT (screen capture)
TERRITORIANS felt the earth shake under them today as an earthquake struck in the Banda Sea - more than 700km away.

The 5.7 magnitude quake was felt in Darwin just before 10am.

Geoscience Australia senior seismologist Phil Cummins said the quake was about 160km below the earth's surface and did not pose a tsunami threat.

"It's too small and too deep to be concerned about a tsunami. And we never know about other earthquakes. There might be aftershocks," he said.

He said there had been up to 30 reports from people in Darwin having felt the tremors.

He said it was unusual for an earthquake to be felt hundreds of kilometres away.

However, he said it was not unknown for the effects of earthquakes' to 'carry' in this region.

"It would be surprising for an earthquake to be felt that far away but we know the path between the Banda Sea and Darwin appears to be particularly efficient for the transmission of the seismic waves," he said.

He said he had not heard of any damage to towns in the area in Indonesia where it had hit.


Strong 6.0 magnitude earthquake hits off the coast of Papua New Guinea

A 6.0-magnitude earthquake has struck off the coast of Papua New Guinea
A 6.0-magnitude earthquake has struck off the coast of Papua New Guinea
The huge quake was recorded 6.0-magnitude and measured 57.8km in depth.

It hit 78 miles east of the town of Rabaul at 7.11am UTC.

The country is situated on the Pacific Ring of Fire - at the point of collision of several tectonic plates.

In the region, a number of active volcanoes and eruptions are frequent.


Drilling in Texas leads to uptick in earthquakes, as sleeping faults reawaken

fracking site Texas
A fracking site is situated on the outskirts of town in the Permian Basin oil field, Texas
In the US since 2008, an unprecedented surge in the amount of earthquakes has hit several states. Most scientists now agree the surge is being triggered by fracking, or wastewater injections being shot into deep wells for oil and gas production.

A paper describing the reasons for an uptick in earthquakes occurring in states like Texas was published on Friday in Science Advances, and was spearheaded by lead author Beatrice Magnani, a seismologist at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas.

The paper analyzes fault displacements on high-resolution seismic reflection profiles in two regions of the central US, including the Fort Worth Basin (FWB) of Texas and the northern Mississippi embayment (NME). They used these areas to assess whether seismicity is induced by human activity (drilling), or if it happens naturally.

Since 2008, Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas and three other states have experienced many more earthquakes than they had previously. Strikingly, Oklahoma's earthquake rate increased from one or two each year to more than 800. In the same time period, Texas has seen a sixfold surge in quakes.

Comment: The likelihood that fracking causes an increase in earthquakes is not the only problem with this technique:
Hydraulic fracturing is a natural gas extraction method that has become extremely controversial for its environmental impacts. Fracking is the process of drilling down into the earth before a high-pressure water mixture is directed at the rock to release the gas inside. Water, sand, and chemicals are injected into the rock at high pressure, which allows the gas to flow out to the head of the well. Wastewater produced from this process is highly toxic and filled with a variety of chemicals.

In many cases, people who live near fracking sites have been able to set fire to the water and air that comes through their pipes. It has also been found to contaminate drinking water. Unfortunately, fracking is still somewhat popular publicly because people know very little about it and it is also popular politically because all of the politicians have a hand in it.
But go back to sleep - the House of Representatives says it's all Russian sponsored propaganda. As for the earthquakes, we don't need to help Mother Nature in providing more - she is doing just fine on her own and will be doing even better next year:

Scientists predict upsurge in major earthquakes for 2018 due to slowdown in Earth's rotation


An update: Sunspots a la Cyclic Catastrophism

Sunspot Cycles
© NAOJ/Nagoya University/JAXA
Fig. 1 Fifty years of constant Sun observation.
This post is a response to "Variation of the Solar Microwave Spectrum in the Last Half Century", Masumi Shimojo et al. Astrophysical Journal, Volume 848, Number 1.

The abstract states:
"... we found that the microwave spectra at the solar minima of Cycles 20-24 agree with each other. These results show that the average atmospheric structure above the upper chromosphere in the quiet-Sun has not varied for half a century, and suggest that the energy input for atmospheric heating from the sub-photosphere to the corona have not changed in the quiet-Sun despite significantly differing strengths of magnetic activity in the last five solar cycles."
See Figure 1 above.


Brutal MS-13 gang stab man over 100 times and ripped out his heart

Criminal organization MS-13
As many as 10 members of the gang MS-13 stabbed a man more than 100 times in a Maryland park, ripped out his heart and buried him, officials say.

Court documents released Wednesday reveal gruesome details about the killing of a man officials in Montgomery County still have not been able to identify.

Miguel Angel Lopez-Abrego, 19, was arrested and charged with first-degree murder.

A ranking gang member told police Lopez-Abrego was the first person to stab the victim, court documents say.

The informant said that he, Lopez-Abrego and eight other MS-13 gang members lured the victim to Wheaton Regional Park this spring. For about two weeks, they planned how to get the man to go from the Annapolis area to Wheaton because they planned to kill him and dispose of his body, the informant told police.

Lopez-Abrego helped dig a grave for the victim and used a walkie-talkie to tell the other gang members when the victim had arrived, the informant told police.


Two earthquakes measuring 3.9 hit Bárðarbunga volcano in Iceland

Bárðarbunga is located in the Vatnajökull ice cap
© mbl.is/Árni Sæberg
Bárðarbunga is located in the Vatnajökull ice cap
Two earthquakes of the magnitude of 3.9 occurred in Bárðarbunga in Vatnajökull glacier this afternoon.

Further smaller quakes have been detected following these ones.

There are no signs of volcanic unrest reports the Iceland Met Office.

Comment: This latest seismic activity continues the increasing trend set in September and through October, see the following report for further details: Four large earthquakes recorded in Iceland's most powerful volcano.