Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.2 earthquake hits Tonga.

5.2 earthquake hits North of Ascension Island.

5.1 earthquake hits the Bismarck Sea.

5.0 earthquake hits Fiji.

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Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

In the Western Pacific: Tropical depression 02w (Sanba), located approximately 70 nm south -southeast of Puerto Princesa, Philippines, is tracking north-northwestward at 08 knots.

In the Southern Hemisphere: Tropical cyclone (tc) 09p (Gita), located approximately 407 nm east of Noumea, New Caledonia, is tracking west-southwestward at 08 knots.

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Global Warming

Fiji – Rising Waters

In Fiji, villages need to move due to climate change.

The headman of Vunidogoloa village was born here in 1960 on a river estuary in Natewa Bay, on Fiji’s second-largest island, Vanua Levu.

Today, all that remains of his childhood home is the concrete bathroom foundation and three wooden stumps sticking out of the dark, muddy sand. The beach is just a few metres wide, precariously situated between a grassy elevation leading to the main part of the old village and the bay.

By 2006, regular flooding, soil erosion and the unabated rise of water surrounding their community forced the villagers to ask the Fijian government for help.

In January 2014, Vunidogoloa moved two kilometres inland, becoming the first village in Fiji to relocate because of the effects of climate change.

For much of the world, climate change is a catastrophe unfolding in slow motion, with consequences that can still seemingly be ignored.

But in island nations across the Pacific, climate change has well and truly arrived and is already posing an existential threat to communities.

Rising sea levels have swallowed up five of the Solomon Islands since the mid-20th century.

For Kiribati, a small island nation made up of coral atolls, rising waters pose a threat so dire that in 2014 the government purchased a 20-square-kilometre piece of land in Fiji, to be used to re-settle climate refugees.

Fiji itself has recorded a six-millimetre sea level increase each year since 1993.

Disease

China reports 1st known human H7N4 avian influenza case

The Chinese National Health and Family Planning Commission (NHFPC) reported confirming a human case of avian influenza A (H7N4). According to the NHFPC, this is the first case of human infection with avian influenza A (H7N4) in the world.

The patient had contact with live poultry before the onset of symptoms. Upon analysis, the genes of the virus were determined to be of avian origin.

Volcanos

Roundup of Global Volcanic Activity – New Activity for the week of 7 February – 13 February 2018

Fuego | Guatemala : INSIVUMEH reported that explosions at Fuego during 7-13 February generated ash plumes that rose as high as 1.5 km and drifted 10-12 km N, NW, SW, and S. Avalanches of material traveled down the Seca (W), Ceniza (SSW), and Taniluyá (SW) drainages on 12 February, and down the Las Lajas (SE) and Honda (E) drainages on 13 February. Ash fell in areas downwind on 13 February including Morelia (9 km SW) and Panimaché (8 km SW).

Kadovar | Papua New Guinea : RVO reported that on 9 February the lava dome at Kadovar’s SE Coastal Vent collapsed, causing 5-6 minor tsunamis, less than 1 m high, observed by residents on Blup Blup’s E and W coasts. The waves were reported at 1050, before the main collapse of the dome. In a 12 February report RVO noted that activity from Main Crater consisted of white plumes rising 20 m and drifting a few kilometers SE and weak nighttime crater incandescence.

Mayon | Luzon (Philippines) : PHIVOLCS reported that during 7-13 February activity at Mayon continued to be characterized daily by lava effusion from the summit crater, rockfalls, lava fountains, steam emissions, advancing lava flows on the flanks, and pyroclastic flows. Numerous rockfall events were generated from the front and margins of advancing lava flows. Lava fountaining was nearly continuous during 6-10 February, with around 290 lava-fountaining events recorded by the seismic network from 0557 on 5 February until around 0700 on 10 February. The events each lasted between 3 and 233 minutes, and were accompanied by rumbling sounds audible with a 10-km radius. Lava fountaining was sporadic during 11-13 February. Lava fountains during phases of both nearly continuous and sporadic activity rose as tall as 400 m, and produced steam plumes up to 2.5 km above the crater that drifted in multiple directions. Lava flows advanced to 3.3 km, 4.5 km, and 900 m in the Mi-isi (S), Bonga (SE), and Basud (E) drainages, respectively. Pyroclastic density currents traveled 4.2-4.6 km in the Mi-isi, Bonga, and Basud drainages. The Alert Level remained at 4 (on a 0-5 scale) and the public was warned to remain outside of the Danger Zone defined as an area within an 8-km radius.