Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

There are no current tropical storms.

NewsBytes:

Pennsylvania, USA – A severe thunderstorm hammered western Pennsylvania Thursday evening, bringing with it flash flooding that shut down low-lying roads throughout the area. Severe thunderstorms walloped the Pittsburgh area Thursday afternoon and evening. The storms downed wires and trees and flooded roads across Allegheny County when it hit just after 4 p.m., according to initial reports.

India – Several northeastern states are taking stock of the situation following incessant rains over the last three days, which have triggered flash floods and landslides. The swollen Khawthlangtuipui river has submerged over 350 houses in Tlabung sub-division in Lunglei where eight persons died after flash floods caused by heavy rainfall wrecked havoc yesterday. Officials estimated that over 2,000 families were affected by the floods. The whole of south Mizoram – Serchhip, Lunglei, Lawngtlai and Siaha districts and eastern Champhai district bordering Myanmar remained cut off from the rest of the country for the third day today due landslides at many places. Around 10 buildings have submerged in the swelling waters of the Tlawng river. In Assam, the districts of Lakhimpur, Darrang and Hailakandi have been hit by floods affecting nearly 14,000 people in 39 villages there.

Environment

Iceberg Siege

An unusually dense flow of melting ice from the Arctic trapped several boats off Newfoundland during the first half of June, bringing the Maritime Province’s fishing season to a halt.

The Canadian Coast Guard says the ice has been so bad that its icebreaker Amundsen has been unable to free the trapped vessels.

The Coast Guard has instead been forced to rescue several crew members aboard the trapped ships by helicopter.

The snow crab season has been open for weeks, but most fishermen have been stuck ashore waiting for hazardous sea ice to pass.

Global Warming

Climate Change Pushing Tropical Diseases Toward Arctic

Temperature changes around the globe are pushing human pathogens of all kinds into unexpected new areas, raising many new risks for people.

Among the most well-documented of these new threats is the spread of ocean-traveling Vibrio bacteria that can sicken or kill unsuspecting swimmers or shellfish eaters, even though these bacteria need warm water to survive.

Before 2004, for example, Alaskan waters were thought to be too cold to support enough Vibrio to cause disease. But around July 4 that year, aboard a small cruise ship, several dozen passengers got sick after eating oysters from the Gulf of Alaska—more than 1,000 kilometers further north than the previous northernmost Vibrio incident. The waters that summer around the oyster beds were 2 degrees warmer than they’d ever been.

Already in Europe, for example, the ticks that carry Lyme disease, once largely limited to the south, are finding new hosts as far north as Sweden. Some winters aren’t cold enough to kill the young nymphs, which also allows them to stick around another season. A similar issue has struck a region near Russia’s Ural Mountains, which has seen a 23-fold increase in tick-borne encephalitis in 20 years. Temperature changes have lengthened the tick season by half (the same problem is hammering moose). Meanwhile, the sandflies that host parasites that cause leishmaniasis, some varieties of which cause skin lesions or spleen and liver damage, are showing up in north Texas.

Evidence suggests, for example, that moisture changes could alter the spread of the soil-borne fungi that give rise to the American Southwest’s flu-like valley fever. Infections that aerosolize, like tuberculosis, can linger longer and perhaps be transported easier in regions of the world projected to become more humid. New research suggests the spread of blood-sucking kissing bugs that contain parasites that carry Chagas Disease may well help that affliction spread into North America. Already millions of people worldwide, mostly in South America, suffer from chronic Chagas, which can lead to life-threatening heart damage and stroke.

Environment

Global Temperature Extremes

The week’s hottest temperature was 121.0 degrees Fahrenheit (49.4 degrees Celsius) in Al Qaysumah, Saudi Arabia.

The week’s coldest temperature was minus 107.0 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 77.2 degrees Celsius) at Vostok, Antarctica.

Temperatures were tabulated from the more than 10,000 worldwide synoptic weather stations. The United Nations World Meteorological Organization sets the standards for weather observations, and provides a global telecommunications circuit for data distribution.

Wildfires

Wildfires – Siberia

Wildfires in Russia’s Far East and Siberia swelled by 3,600 ha to 16,700 ha over the past 24 hours, the Russian Aerial Forest Protection Service reported on Friday.

“The major increase occurred in the Magadan Region – in one day the wildfire area grew 43-fold from 40 ha to 1,700 ha. In the Amur Region the wildfires grew from 1,700 to almost 2,000 ha, and in the Irkutsk Region – from 4,000 to 5,200 ha,” the service said.

Wildfires – New Mexico, USA

Eleven wildfires are burning in New Mexico as of Thursday. The state Department of Health issued a smoke advisory for northern parts of the state.

Air Pollution From Wildfires Much Worse Than Previous Estimates

0930 wildfires

Particle pollution from wildfires, long known for containing soot and other fine particles known to be dangerous to human health, is much worse than previously thought, a new study shows.

Naturally burning timber and brush from wildfires release dangerous particles into the air at a rate three times as high as levels known by the EPA, researchers at Georgia Tech found.

Scientists sampled air quality by flying planes directly into thick plumes from three major wildfires, including the 2013 Rim Fire, the largest wildfire in the Sierra Nevada. Previous EPA data was based on plume samples from controlled burns. Greg Huey is the study’s lead author.

“Under the conditions of the prescribed fires, it seems like you can get a smaller impact on air quality, So I think an extrapolation is that if you had more prescribed burning you might prevent some wildfires and in the process of doing that you would also probably help air quality issues,” Huey says.

The study also found wildfires spew methanol, benzene, ozone and other noxious chemicals.

Disease

Dengue fever outbreak: Sri Lanka update

The outbreak of dengue fever in Sri Lanka is spreading at epidemic levels with the latest case count at 63,987, including 177 deaths as of today.

Iraq: Foodborne illness outbreak

UN and Iraqi health officials are investigating a suspected foodborne illness outbreak at the Hassan Sham U2 camp, near Erbil. The outbreak has sickened some 825 mainly internally displaced people from west Mosul as of June 12.

A third of all the cases were children and two thirds were female and the majority of the cases predominately presented with vomiting, abdominal pain and diarrhea, consistent with foodborne illness.

Volcanos

Roundup of Global Volcanic Activity – Ongoing Activity for the week of 7 June – 13 June 2017

Aira | Kyushu (Japan) : JMA reported four events at Showa Crater (at Aira Caldera’s Sakurajima volcano) during 5-12 June, one of which was explosive. Material was ejected 800 m away the crater rim. Ash plumes rose as high as 3.2 km on 6 June and 1.9 km on 10 June. A very small event occurred at Minamidake summit crater on 5 June. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a 5-level scale).

Asamayama | Honshu (Japan) : JMA stated that activity at Asama had been progressively increasing. During 2-5 June a plume rose less than 400 m above the active crater. Weak incandescence from the summit crater was recorded at night with a webcam. Sulfur dioxide flux was a little higher than 900 tons per day when measured on 2 June. The Alert Level remained at 2 (on a scale of 1-5).

Bagana | Bougainville (Papua New Guinea) : Based on analyses of satellite imagery and model data, the Darwin VAAC reported that during 7-8 and 14 June ash plumes from Bagana rose to an altitude of 2.1 km (7,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted 65 km SW, W, and NW.

Cleveland | Chuginadak Island (USA) : AVO reported that on 6 June small low-frequency earthquakes at Cleveland were recorded by the seismic network. Elevated surface temperatures identified in satellite images during 6-7 June were consistent with lava effusion at the summit crater. No volcanic activity was detected in seismic, infrasound, or cloudy satellite images during 8-13 June, though AVO noted that lava effusion may have been occurring. A thermal anomaly was identified in satellite images during 12-13 June. The Aviation colour Code remained at Orange and the Volcano Alert Level remained at Watch.

Dukono | Halmahera (Indonesia) : Based on analyses of satellite imagery, wind model data, and notices from PVMBG, the Darwin VAAC reported that during 7-14 June ash plumes from Dukono rose to altitudes of 1.8-2.1 km (6,000-7,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted in multiple directions. Ash plumes drifted as far as 140 km E on 7 June.

Ebeko | Paramushir Island (Russia) : Based on observations by residents of Severo-Kurilsk (Paramushir Island) about 7 km E of Ebeko, KVERT reported that explosive activity continued at the volcano during 2-9 June. The Aviation colour Code remained at Orange (the second highest level on a four-colour scale).

Fuego | Guatemala : INSIVUMEH reported that during 8-9 June explosions at Fuego generated ash plumes that rose as high as 1.1 km above the crater rim and drifted 15 km W, NW, and N. Rumbling was noted, and block avalanches descended multiple ravines. Lahars traveled down several ravines on the SE, S, and SW flanks, especially down the Pantaleón (W) ravine. On 10 June at 1150 a lahar descended the Ceniza (SSW) drainage, carrying blocks 1 m in diameter. The lahar was 15-18 m wide and as deep as 3 m. During 10-11 June explosions produced ash plumes that rose 750-1,050 m and drifted 12-15 km W, NW, and N. Shock waves from some of the explosions were detected. Two hot lahars descended the flanks on 13 June. The first one traveled down the Pantaleón river and was 35 m wide and 2.5-3 m deep, and carried trees and blocks 2-3 m in diameter. The second lahar descended the Ceniza and was 25 m wide and 3 m deep, and carried blocks up to 2 m in diameter.

Ibu | Halmahera (Indonesia) : Based on PVMBG observations, webcam and satellite images, and wind data, the Darwin VAAC reported that during 9-12 and 14 June ash plumes from Ibu rose 1.5-1.8 km (4,800-6,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted N, W, and SSW.

Kilauea | Hawaiian Islands (USA) : During 7-13 June HVO reported that the lava lake continued to rise, fall, and spatter in Kilauea’s Overlook crater. Webcams recorded incandescence from long-active sources within Pu’u ‘O’o Crater, from a vent high on the NE flank of the cone, and from a small lava pond (which had many small spattering sites along the margin) in a pit on the W side of the crater. The 61G lava flow, originating from a vent on Pu’u ‘O’o Crater’s E flank, continued to enter the ocean at Kamokuna. Field observations on 31 May revealed that the lava delta had grown to an area of approximately 0.01 square kilometers. A solidified lava ramp extended from the tube exit high on the sea cliff down to the delta, whose leading edge was about 100 m from the tube exit on the sea cliff.

Klyuchevskoy | Central Kamchatka (Russia) : KVERT reported that during 2-9 June explosions at Klyuchevskoy generated ash plumes that rose to 5 km (16,400 ft) a.s.l. and drifted about 325 km NE, SE, and SW. A weak thermal anomaly was identified in satellite images on 4 and 8 June. The Aviation colour Code remained at Orange (the second highest level on a four-colour scale).

Langila | New Britain (Papua New Guinea) : Based on analyses of satellite imagery and wind model data, the Darwin VAAC reported that on 7 June ash plumes from Langila rose 2.1 km (7,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted over 45 km NW. On 14 June ash plumes rose 1.8 km (6,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted WNW.

Poas | Costa Rica :OVSICORI-UNA reported that during 7-13 June seismicity at Poás was characterized by low-amplitude tremor, discrete volcano-tectonic events, low-frequency events, and some periods of small long-period events with low amplitude. During 7-8 June the webcam recorded strong emissions of water vapor, magmatic gases, and particulates. A sulfur odor was reported in Alajuela, San Ramon, and Barva, and incandescence in the area of the crater was recorded at night. OVSICORI-UNA noted that during 8-9 June a plume of water vapor, magmatic gases, and particulates rose from two vents; the lake had evaporated and exposed the vents. A minor sulfur odor was reported on the campus of the Universidad Nacional in Heredia. Events at 1610 and 1750 on 11 June generated plumes that rose 300 and 600 m above the crater, respectively. Plumes from the vents rose 1 km during 12-13 June. A sulfur odor was noted in Quesada, Santa Ana, San José de Alajuela, and San Juanillo Naranjo.

Sabancaya | Peru : Observatorio Vulcanológico del Sur del IGP (OVS-IGP) and Observatorio Vulcanológico del INGEMMET (OVI) reported that explosive activity at Sabancaya slightly decreased from the previous week; there was an average of 31 explosions recorded per day during 5-11 June. The number and magnitude of long-period and hybrid events were moderate and low, respectively. Levels of long-period events were moderate and hybrid events were low. Gas-and-ash plumes rose as high as 2.8 km above the crater rim and drifted more than 30 km E and SE. The MIROVA system detected four thermal anomalies, spread over the SE, N, and NW flanks. Sulfur dioxide flux was as high as 3,392 tons per day on 6 June.

Sinabung | Indonesia : Based on PVMBG observations, webcam and satellite images, and wind data, the Darwin VAAC reported that during 12-14 June ash plumes from Sinabung rose 3.4-5.5 km (11,000-18,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted W and S.

Turrialba | Costa Rica : OVSICORI-UNA reported that tremor amplitude at Turrialba fluctuated from low to medium levels during 7-13 June. Periods of small volcano-tectonic events and many small-amplitude long-period events were also recorded. Plumes of gas and water vapor rose as high as 1 km above the vent and drifted mainly NW, W, and SW.