Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.9 earthquake hits Halmahera, Indonesia.

5.4 earthquake hits the Fox Islands in the Aleutian Islands.

5.2 earthquake hits offshore Guatemala.

5.2 earthquake hits the southern mid-Atlantis ridge.

5.1 earthquake hits the Kermedec Islands.

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Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

In the Atlantic Ocean: Tropical Storm Humberto is located about 135 mi…220 km nnw of Great Abaco island and about 175 mi…285 km e of Cape Canaveral Florida with maximum sustained winds…60 mph…95 km/h. Present movement…nnw or 335 degrees at 7 mph…11 km/h.

In the Eastern Pacific Ocean: Tropical Storm Kiko is located about 815 mi…1310 km wsw of the southern tip of Baja California with maximum sustained winds…125 mph…205 km/h. Present movement…w or 265 degrees at 8 mph…13 km/h.

In the Western Pacific Ocean: Tropical depression 17w (Seventeen), located approximately 651 nm southeast of Iwo To, Japan, is tracking northwestward at 13 knots.

NewsBytes:

Thailand – Floods in north-eastern Thailand have submerged homes, roads and bridges, leaving more than 23,000 people in evacuation shelters as anger grows over the government’s “slow” emergency response. Torrential rain has lashed the country for the last two weeks, causing flash floods and mudslides in almost half its provinces, with families evacuated from their homes in boats or makeshift rafts. Since 29 August, 32 people have been killed in the deluge. Local media reports from the worst-hit province of Ubon Ratchathani showed people wading through chest-deep water and rescuers in boats trying to steer buffalo to higher ground.

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Wildlife

Botswana Reintroduces Elephant Hunting

Botswana has reintroduced elephant hunts with a cautious approach to pricing, a move that’s likely to further inflame the controversy that’s threatening a $2bn tourism industry after a five-year ban on hunting was lifted.

The government will auction licenses to hunting operators for the right to shoot 158 elephants but is yet to decide on the minimum price it will set at the sales, said Kitso Mokaila, the country’s environment minister.

There will also be a charge of 20 000 pula (about R27 000) for each of 72 elephant hunting licenses designated for foreigners, according to government documents seen by Bloomberg. That compares to at least $21 000 for the right to shoot an elephant in neighbouring Zimbabwe.

Botswana has the world’s largest elephant population, with about 130 000 of the animals roaming free nationwide.

By lifting the hunting ban, Botswana has brought itself in line with its neighbours. The number of hunting licenses are below the 400 cap it set itself, and compares with 500 licenses in Zimbabwe and 90 in Namibia. In South Africa, foreign hunters generated R1.95bn in 2017. Less than 50 elephants are shot in South Africa annually and Zambia has allocated 37 licenses for this year.

Environment

Drought in Botswana

Animal are struggling to survive in drought-hit Botswana. Around 38,000 livestock depend on the waters of Lake Ngami in northern Botswana, but the animals — like the lake itself — are being badly hit by a crippling drought. Hippo have also been severely affected seeking out the few remaining pools of muddy water to survive.

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Disease

Dengue Fever – Western Hemisphere

In the Western hemisphere, the number of dengue cases reported through August is 2,384,029 cases and 949 deaths. The number of cases reported in 2019 as August 31 is higher than the annual totals reported in 2016, 2017, and 2018, and the total by the end of the year will likely exceed the total reported in the epidemic year of 2015.

In Colombia, 84,664 cases of dengue and 919 cases of severe dengue have been reported to date. In addition, 169 deaths have been recorded. The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) indicated that Colombia has the second highest incidence in this new cycle of the epidemic. The El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) phenomenon, the country’s geographical conditions, and the natural cycle of the disease have generated an increase in dengue cases since the final quarter of 2018.