Monday, May 27, 2013

MONUMENTAL CELESTIAL CONVERGENCE: Earth May Still Lie In The Path Of A Potential Gamma-Ray Burst (GRB), Say Astronomers - If A GRB Hit Earth's Atmosphere, It Could Cause A 50 Percent Increase In Solar UVB Radiation And A Extinction Level Event!

As our ancestors predicted, we are currently moving from one sphere of influence into an higher octave of influence, through the doorway of the fourth age into the fifth age, when the true planetary caretakers or the ancient ones will rise. In chronicling Earth's spiral orbit with the Sun's carousel of light, they understood that we will enter a new form of consciousness with the birth of a new sun. This consciousness envelope of the planet will adjust with the changing spin orientation of the electrons around the atom as we enter a more compact and intense field of light, brought on as we go through a denser cloud of magnetic dust, these cosmic rays will eventually lead to the compression of our atmosphere, seeding and perfecting conscious awareness. This sphere of influence will bring about a new paradigm, where our vibrations will rise in word, deeds and actions by detachment from the frequencies of fear under the Priest Class and fully embrace the natural laws of Ma'at, finding order, spiritualize matter and ascend in accordance with cosmic dictates. - The COSMIC Spirit.

May 27, 2013 - UNITED STATES
Fifteen years after its discovery, two astronomers say earth may still lie within the sights of a potentially lethal progenitor of a stellar gamma-ray burst (GRB).

An artist’s concept of a stellar gamma-ray burst (GRB) with polar jets streaming forth from the star’s poles. Credit: NASA/Swift/Mary Pat Hrybyk-Keith and John Jones

Although WR 104, a Wolf-Rayet star some 8000 light years distant, has thus far remained largely quiescent, it is ripe to undergo a supernova core collapse of the sort that could generate a seconds-long burst of gamma-rays that, in turn, might potentially wipe out a quarter of earth’s protective atmospheric ozone.

“We could see it go supernova anywhere from tomorrow to 500,000 years from now,” said Grant Hill, an astronomer at the Keck Observatory in Hawaii.

“For all intents and purposes, the gamma-ray burst and optical photons from the supernova would arrive simultaneously.”

The question of whether a GRB from WR 104 — which lies in the direction of our Milky Way’s galactic center — would actually cross earth’s path has been the subject of debate for years now.

But Grant says that given the continuing uncertainty about the star’s alignment with our own, such a scenario can’t be ruled out.

Discussion, heretofore, has centered on conflicting measurements of the star’s rotational axis and whether WR 104’s polar orientation lies “face on” to earth’s line of sight or whether it is inclined by as much as 30 to 40 degrees.

If the star lies “pole on” to earth that would mean that we would be directly in the line of fire of such a burst which might travel along a beam as large as 20-degrees in diameter. If indeed, the star’s polar inclination to earth is 30 degrees, then earth would be untouched.

However, Peter Tuthill, an astronomer at the University of Sydney in Australia, and colleagues, first found WR 104 in 1998 via an advanced method of ground-based infrared imaging while observing with the Keck I telescope.

Dust streaming from the Wolf-Rayet 104 binary star system creates a pinwheel nebula. Credit: U.C. Berkeley Space Sciences Laboratory, W.M. Keck Observatory.

They found that the star’s orbital inclination to earth appeared to be 10 to 15 degrees. Even so, Hill’s own optical spectroscopic measurements using the Keck I several years later, found the inclination to be 30 to 40 degrees.

“But if you look at WR 104 and the image of its pinwheel,” said Hill, “it really is a visceral and powerful argument that the thing is face on with an inclination of zero.”

Wolf-Rayet stars are highly-evolved, very luminous massive stars that have been stripped of their outer hydrogen envelopes through extreme mass loss.

When such stars are found in a binary system such as WR 104, then dense high-velocity colliding stellar winds from the two stars sometimes leads to significant dust formation.

In the case of WR 104, these winds have created a spiral pinwheel-like nebula extending out to 160 astronomical units (A.U.) or twice the orbital diameter of Pluto to our sun.

“There are more than a hundred known galactic Wolf-Rayet stars which makes them incredibly rare,” said Tuthill. “Any of these could potentially be a GRB. WR 104 is the only one to appear just face on [or in the plane of the sky].”

Hill says that if WR 104 does go supernova and emits a GRB, the burst would emerge from the star’s two opposite poles.

Since announcing his initial WR 104 measurements, Hill says he has refined his computer models. Thus, he expects to get a better handle on the star’s true inclination by reanalyzing his existing data; the results of which will be submitted to a refereed astronomical journal within a year.

“It’s a complicated system and either of us might have made an oversimplification,” said Tuthill.

If such a GRB did hit earth’s atmosphere, says Adrian Melott, a physicist at the University of Kansas in Lawrence, it would likely cause a 50 percent increase in solar UVB radiation which would not only disrupt photosynthesis among marine and freshwater plankton, but also likely precipitate some sort of broader extinction event.

“You would first notice a 10-second blue flash in the upper atmosphere,” said Melott, “but then the damage would be done.” - Forbes.

EXTREME WEATHER: America Under Attack - Dangerous Memorial Day Thunderstorms Set To Erupt Across The Plains From Texas To The Dakotas!

May 27, 2013 - UNITED STATES - Dangerous thunderstorms will once again erupt across the Plains this Memorial Day from West Texas northward to the western Dakotas.

All totaled, over 10 million people run the risk of strong thunderstorms during the day.

While a major tornado outbreak is not expected, a couple of the strongest thunderstorms that develop can produce tornadoes.

Indications are that this risk will focus over northern Kansas and southern Nebraska to neighboring Missouri Monday evening. This includes Hastings in Nebraska, Salina in Kansas and the Kansas City, Mo., metro area.

The thunderstorms that develop throughout the Plains on Memorial Day will also have the potential to bring hail as large as baseballs and wind gusts as high as 70 mph.

Hail this size is capable of causing serious injury to anyone caught outside. It can also kill exposed livestock, damage or destroy crops and smash windshields.

Wind gusts as high as 70 mph can easily uproot trees, snap branches and blow over power poles.

These thunderstorms will impact some of the same areas that were affected on Sunday, and flash flooding from heavy rainfall will also be a concern.

If you will be out and about over the Memorial Day weekend, keep an eye to the sky, especially in the afternoon and evening hours.

Once thunderstorms develop, they will strengthen quickly, and severe weather may not be far away.

Be sure to understand the difference between a watch and a warning. A watch means that an area is being monitored for dangerous weather. A warning means that dangerous weather is imminent.

Keep in mind that lightning is one of Mother Nature's most dangerous killers. If you can hear thunder, you are close enough to the storm to be struck by lightning, even if the sun is still shining. - AccuWeather.

WAR DRUMS: Iran Begins A 'Massive' Deployment Of New Long-Range Missile Launchers - Saudi Arabia Warns Against Iran's Nuclear Program!

May 27, 2013 - MIDDLE EAST - As the Islamic Republic of Iran prepares for presidential elections next month it is fielding a "massive" number of new long-range missile launchers, Iranian media reported on Sunday. Defense Minister Gen. Ahmad Vahidi was quoted as saying the new weapon systems give Iranian forces the ability to "crush the enemy" with the simultaneous launching of long-range surface-to-surface missiles, according to Fars, the semi-official Iranian news agency.   The report did not specify the type of missile that would be fired, or provide details on the number of launchers allegedly deployed.

Iran Begins 'Massive' Deployment Of Long-Range Missile Launchers.
Iran: A Hawk surface-to-air missile (AFP Photo / Amin Khoroshahi)

Iran’s military does possess surface-to-surface missiles that are capable of traveling over 2,000 kilometers (1,200 miles), able to reach of targets inside Israel and US bases in the region.   Vahidi did not specify who was the "enemy," and emphasized that Iran would never start a war.   Although Tehran occasionally announces military achievements that cannot be independently verified – like the claim it developed a state-of-the-art stealth drone capable of evading enemy radar – they come in the face of relentless external pressure.

Only last year, as the United Nations slapped Tehran with another round of harsh sanctions, Iran threatened to shut down the Strait of Hormuz, through which 18 million barrels of oil flows every day – roughly 35 percent of the world’s total. Any disruption of this supply route would have a huge impact on oil prices, and by extension the global economy.

The stand-off resulted in a tense military parade as the US sent three full US carrier groups, each accompanied by dozens of support vessels and carrying more aircraft than the entire Iranian air force, to participate in the Hormuz exercises. Tehran watched with apprehension as the fleet came and went.

Earlier this month, another US-led naval drill began in the Persian Gulf in a second such display of maritime strength in less than a year. The exercises involved 35 ships, 18 unmanned submarines and unmanned aircraft. At the same time, Washington has been engaged in constructing a European missile defense system that it says will protect Europe from a “rogue state” missile attack.

In September, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu exhorted the UN General Assembly to draw "a clear red line" to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons. The hawkish government of Likud leader Netanyahu has said in the past that “all of the options are on the table” – a thinly disguised remark suggesting military action – in order to halt Iran’s nuclear research.

These fears are shared by the US and EU who have imposed severe sanctions targeting Iran’s oil sectors against the Persian country, and by many other nations across the globe. Tehran has rejected the allegations, arguing that it is developing its nuclear capabilities for purely civilian purposes, and demanding that the world acknowledge its right to peaceful nuclear research. - RT.

Iran Fields "Massive" Number Of Missile Launchers.
Iranian soldiers prepare to launch a Hawk surface-to-air missile during military maneuvers at an undisclosed location in Iran.(AFP Photo / Amin Khoroshahi)

Iran has fielded a "massive" number of new long-range missile launchers, state TV reported Sunday. The new weapon components delivered to Iranian military units would allow them to "crush the enemy" with the mass simultaneous fire of long-range surface-to-surface missiles, Defence Minister Gen. Ahmad Vahidi was quoted as saying.

TV showed footage of him inspecting two dozen launch trucks without missiles at an outdoor site. The report did not specify the type of missile that would be fired, nor more details on the number of launchers deployed.
Some of Iran's surface-to-surface missiles are estimated to have ranges of over 2,000 kilometers (1,200 miles), capable of hitting its arch-foe Israel and the U.S. bases in the region.

Vahidi did not specify who was the "enemy" and said Iran would never start a war. Iran considers both the United States and Israel as enemies. Both have not ruled out a military option against Iran's nuclear facilities, which the West suspects are aimed at weapons development. Iran denies the charge.

From time to time Iran announces military achievements that cannot be independently verified. Facing a Western military embargo, Iran is pursuing a program for military self-sufficiency, producing weapons ranging from light submarines and jet fighters to torpedoes and missiles. - AP.

Saudi Arabia Warns Against Iran's Nuclear Program.
Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal has warned against the danger of Iran's nuclear program to the region's security and said Iran should not threaten its neighbors since countries in the region harbor no ill-intentions to the Islamic Republic.

"We stress the danger of the Iranian nuclear program to the security of the whole region," Prince Saud said Saturday in a joint news conference with Indian External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid in the city of Jiddah. Turning to Syria, he also that Syrian President Bashar Assad and his regime should have no role in the country's future.

Saudi Arabia announced last week the arrest of 10 more members of an alleged Iranian spy ring. - AP.

Report: Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah Clinically Dead.
Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz.
Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz is reported to be clinically dead as the monarch is not recently seen in the public. A Saudi journalist working for London-Based Asharq Alawsat says the Saudi monarch has been clinically dead since Wednesday. 

He also quoted medical sources in Saudi Arabia as saying that the king’s vital organs, including his heart, kidneys and lungs, have stopped functioning.  Doctors are said to have used a defibrillator on him several times. He is also reported to be alive with the help of a ventilator.  The Royal Court has yet to comment on the report of King's death.  The aging Saudi monarch has not recently appeared in the public and the country's crown prince is attending official meetings on his behalf.

It is the second time in the past months that Asharq Alawsat reports the death of King Abdullah.  In November 2012, the daily reported that Saudi king has slipped into coma and was clinically dead nearly a week after he underwent a 14-hour-long back surgery in a hospital in the Saudi capital, Riyadh.  The report was later rejected by the Royal Court.  The 89-year-old king’s health has declined over the past few years, during which he has been hospitalized several times.  Failing health, old age as well as the death of the king’s half-brothers have raised concerns about the future of the oil-rich country in the face of anti-government demonstrations. - Press TV.

Saudi King Appoints Son National Guard Minister.
Saudi Arabia's king has converted the national guard command into the National Guard Ministry and appointed his son Mitab, the commander of the guard, as National Guard Minister.
The national guard serves as an elite force to protect the regime.

A royal decree issued Monday gave no reasons for the move. It was not clear what changes this would make on the ground. In November 2010, King Abdullah appointed Mitab, 60, as minister of state, Cabinet member and national guard commander.

Mitab, King Abdullah's third son, joined the national guard as a lieutenant after graduating from the British Sandhurst military academy. He reached the rank of general in December 2000.
The king appointed him deputy national guard commander with ministerial rank in 2009. - AP.

ICE AGE NOW: A Year Without Spring - Ski Resorts Reports THREE FEET Of Snow During Freak Memorial Day Storm That Blanketed The American Northeast!

May 27, 2013 - UNITED STATES - The official start of the tourist season landed with a cold, wet thud across parts of Upstate New York and New England this weekend, thanks to a freak snowstorm and unseasonably cold temperatures. But, at least one business in the region is celebrating the bizarre weather. Whiteface Lake Placid ski resort in Wilmington, New York, reported nearly three feet of snow on Sunday. The ski resort posted remarkable pictures on its Twitter page showing employees in a heavy winter coats and four-wheel drive trucks frolicking in massive snow drifts. 

This is May?! Whiteface Mountain in Upstate New York reported 34 inches of snowfall on Sunday - a bizarre record.

Four-wheel drive: Heavy trucks were needed to plow out roads and power through the massive drifts.

Knee-deep: An employee stands up to his knees in snow that fell Sunday on Whiteface Mountain in Wilmington, New York.

The resort sits atop Whiteface Mountain, one of the highest peaks in the Adirondack Mountains. Even given the elevation of the mountain, the 34 inches of snow in late May was a remarkable sight.  Communities at higher elevations in Vermont, New Hampshire, Upstate New York and northwest Maine all reported snowfall on Sunday.  Most of the snow was little more than a dusting of large wet flakes. Above 2,800 feet of elevation, though, the snow was more substantial.  

Confused residents took to Twitter to bemoan the wintry weather.  Snowflakes were confined to the higher summits of northern New England but the chilly weather lingered all day as cloud cover and rain kept highs in the 40s and 50s from New England to northeastern New York.  However, the long weekend will conclude with drier conditions and temperatures returning closer to average so those who like to kick-off the beach season on Memorial Day may still get the chance.  

Piled high: A ski resort employee basks in a winter wonderland - less than a month before the official first day of summer.

For reference: A snow drift that piled up on the roadway was taller than a full-size pickup truck.

Residents of the Adirondack Mountains are no doubt used to snow piling up - just not in May.

Residents of Binghamton, New York, reported sleet and soft hail on Friday afternoon, according to, which is the latest date of either sleet or snow on record, there, dating to 1951.  In Syracuse, a brief period of flurries late on Friday night was the city's latest occurrence of snow on record, topping the previous 'latest snow' record from May 17, 1973.  According to Accuweather, there were even reports of trees down in some parts of Vermont due to heavy snow.  Sunday should be more pleasant in the Southeast, with mostly dry weather and temperatures in the 70s and 80s, however scattered thunderstorms could spread into the Tennessee Valley, southern Appalachians and Carolinas tomorrow.  

The area saw near-record low temperatures On Saturday and this morning, with most locations in the 40s and 50s and even a few 30s in the southern Appalachians. In the central U.S., wild weather, which saw two women killed after they were swept away by floodwaters in San Antonio, Texas, will continue to be a threat across the holiday weekend. Scattered showers and thunderstorms are possible from the Plains into the Middle and Upper Mississippi Valleys, with forecasters predicting particularly severe weather in the Plains. The Great Lakes and Upper Mississippi Valley, including Minneapolis and Chicago should see high temperatures in the 60s to near 70. Temperatures of 80s and a few 90s are forecast in the central and southern Plains. The northwest is likely to see showers and thunderstorms through the weekend and by Monday these will expand south into northern California including the Bay Area. 

Shocked: New Hampshire residents posted photos of the snow on Twitter.

Trees: There were even reports of trees down in some parts of Vermont due to heavy snow, though this Twitter picture is from New Hampshire.

Snow: The above map shows pockets of snowfall in the northeast of the U.S.

The mixed forecast comes after weekend rains deluged numerous roads in San Antonio, forcing more than 235 rescues by emergency workers who aided stranded motorists and homeowners at times using inflatable boats.  In addition to the two deaths, a teenage boy was also reported missing after Saturday's torrential rains, carried away while trying to cross the swollen Cibolo Creek in the San Antonio suburb of Schertz, authorities said.  At the height of Saturday's torrential downpours, San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro urged residents not to drive as a flash flood warning covered nearly two dozen counties. Nearly 10 inches of rainfall was reported in a matter of hours Saturday at the city's airport.  The National Weather Service said the flash flood threat would persist until late Sunday morning though mostly cloudy weather with occasional thunderstorms and showers was expected to give way to partly sunny skies later in the day.  

The rains left more than 200 residents of the Texas city stranded in cars and homes when water rose unexpectedly up to 4 feet in some spots. Traffic also was snarled, making driving difficult.  'It was pretty crazy,' said Gera Hinojosa, a valet parking cars downtown after the storm. 'It was pretty unexpected. We hardly got any warning about it.'  One woman became trapped in her car and climbed to the roof before being swept away in floodwaters, said San Antonio Fire Department spokesman Christian Bove. Her body was later found against a fence, he said.  Emergency officials also recovered the body of a woman in her 60s who was swept away in her car while firefighters were trying to rescue her. Authorities did not immediately identify the women.  

Widespread: The Olmos Basin Municipal Golf Course and Basse Road are underwater as a result of heavy rains in San Antonio on Saturday.

Memorial Day: Drier conditions are expected for tomorrow though some areas can still expect thunderstorms.

Crazy weather: Radar estimates of up to 9 inches of rain were recorded in an area between downtown San Antonio and Leon Valley over to Hollywood Park, according to the NWS.

Flash flooding: Massive flooding was reported on Saturday across South Texas as emergency crews scrambled to rescue residents in flood prone areas.

At nightfall, water still was pooling in many ditches and underpasses. Several roadways were closed, including a major highway linking the suburbs and the city.  But even in low-lying neighborhoods along Commerce Street east of downtown San Antonio - a faded stretch of clapboard houses and beauty parlors - yards were clear. In the tourist district around the River Walk, the streets were thick with weekend holiday revelers.  While the water in some homes rose 4 feet high, according to Bove, most residents experienced the floods primarily as a major traffic hassle.  Karen Herring, 50, who spent the day volunteering at a fitness contest at the AT&T Center, said participants complained of three-hour drives across town.  

In the city, even a municipal bus was swept away, but firefighters on a boat were able to pluck the three passengers and driver to safety, public transit spokeswoman Priscilla Ingle said. Nobody was injured.  The San Antonio International Airport by Saturday afternoon had recorded 9.87 inches of rain since midnight, causing nearly all streams and rivers to experience extraordinary flooding. The highest amount of rainfall recorded since midnight was 15.5 inches at Olmos Creek at Dresden Drive.  The San Antonio River about 20 miles southeast of the city, near Elmendorf, was expected to peak at 62 feet by Sunday morning, well above the flood stage of 35 feet, the National Weather Service said.  The National Weather Service compared the flooding to the storm of October 1998, when 30 inches of rain fell in a two-day period. In that flood, the Guadalupe and San Antonio River basins overflowed, leaving more than 30 people dead, according to the Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority. - Daily Mail.

WATCH: Upstate New York Memorial Day - 3 Feet of Snow.

THE GREAT DELUGE: "The Venice Of Africa" - Climate Change Is Drowning Senegal!

May 27, 2013 - SENEGAL - Ameth Diagne was asleep when the first waves lapped at his back door, the lukewarm, salty water seeping into his bedroom an impassive portent of the final days of his 650-year-old fishing community.

He had kept his two wives and many of his 16 children with him long after the neighbours had fled, in the vain hope that his once-bustling, tenacious west African village could survive the remorseless advance of the Atlantic Ocean.

"My house used to be two kilometres (1.2 miles) from the sea. I could grow things here because there was fresh water which came from the river," Diagne said, surveying a stretch of wet sand and rubble which, until last year, had been his living room.

Doun Babe Dieye, settled by the Normans in 1364, was the first casualty among many districts of the Senegalese city of St Louis, the former colonial capital of French west Africa which, little-by-little, is disappearing underwater.

Ruins of houses are seen on May 7, 2013 on the beach of the village of Doun Baba Dieye, northern Senegal. The city of St Louis is plagued by flooding during the rainy season and scientists say climate change is exacerbating the problem.

Diagne, 52, and his 760 neighbours had made their living from the precious mullet, sardines, bonga and tilapia which populated the mangroves but have left since the salt water of the Atlantic began encroaching into the Senegal River.

"It was a beautiful village with lots of greenery everywhere," recalled Diagne, a fisherman since leaving Koranic school at the age of 12, and the last to leave when the sea claimed his village of around 40 houses last year.

"I'm sad that I had to go because I lived on fishing. Life was simpler. Now I cannot teach my children what my ancestors taught me—knowledge of the sea, fishing, fauna and flora," said Diagne, one of the lucky ones who had enough money to build a new house further inland.

An archipelago in the mouth of the Senegal River often referred to as the "Venice of Africa", St Louis is anchored precariously between the fast-flowing currents of the swollen waterway and the fearsome breakers of the Atlantic.

Named after Louis XIV, in 1659 it became the first French settlement of l'Afrique-Occidentale, trading in slaves and gum arabic.

A four-hour car journey from Dakar through baobabs and palm trees, the UNESCO World Heritage site remains a major pull for well-heeled Westerners who come to sample its rich colonial heritage.

Women in grimy dresses and headscarves swap jokes and sip tea in its 19th century courtyards while weatherbeaten men lean against the disintegrating plasterwork of 1920s Art-Deco houses and watch the world go by.

The economy has declined since the shift of rule to Dakar but there is still a vibrant fishing economy and the pungent tang of drying Nile perch spread on nets by the river is unmistakable.

In 2008, Alioune Badiane of the United Nations' UN-Habitat agency designated St Louis as "the city most threatened by rising sea levels in the whole of Africa", citing climate change and a failed 2003 canal project as the cause.

The city is plagued by flooding during the rainy season when the river overflows and scientists say climate change is exacerbating the problem with increasingly heavy rain and a rise in the sea level.

Thanks to large scale urbanisation, two-thirds of the 250,000 residents are exposed to floods, with 70 percent of households in the poorest areas having no regular waste collection and less than a tenth having sewer connections.

A tree and and tree debris are pictured on May 7, 2013 on the beach of the village of Doun Baba Dieye, northern Senegal. The city of St Louis is plagued by flooding during the rainy season and scientists say climate change is exacerbating the problem.

"If things keep going the way they are the whole city of St Louis will have to be moved, but it's a possibility we do not want to contemplate," the mayor, Amadou Abiboulaye Dieye, said in an Open University film he made on the city.

The heart of the old colonial city is protected from the rolling waves of the ocean by the Langue de Barbarie, a slender, 17-kilometre spit of sand which is home to 80,000 people, a population density found nowhere else in Africa.

In 2003, heavy rain in the drainage basin of the Senegal River alarmed the authorities who feared the water would rise above critical levels and so dug a new outlet for the river water across the spit.

The channel was about 100 metres (328 feet) in length and 4 metres wide but grew rapidly in the first days as the sea flooded into the river mouth and continued to widen to more than 2 kilometres across today.

Within a year the beach at Doun Baba Dieye, situated opposite the new river mouth, had eroded rapidly, causing Diagne and his neighbours to fear the worst.

"All the villages that were in front of the channel, such as Doun Baba Dieye, have suffered the effects of an intense erosion because these villages were protected from the sea by the Langue de Barbarie," Boubou Aldiouma Sy, a geography lecturer at St Louis' Gaston Berger University, told AFP.

"Today, the village of Doun Baba Dieye has completely disappeared and villages to the south are progressively more threatened as the breach is migrating south."

In a few weeks the rains will come again, bringing more flooding, sewage, disease and misery.

With each storm season more worrying than the last, experts like Sy believe St Louis has to live up to the comparisons with Venice and emulate the Italian city's success in turning water to its advantage.

"St Louis can choose to do the same, at the same time solving some of their most urgent water-related problems—managing the drainage problem and reducing the flood risk," a 2011 report for UN Habitat said.

"If water is approached as an opportunity instead of an enemy that needs to be combatted, then St Louis can make a strong statement to the world, similar to what the Venetians did a long time ago: use the water dimension as a unique selling point and fully integrate it in short and long term urban planning." - PHYS.

MASS FISH DIE-OFF: Outbreak Of Hypoxia - Massive Dead Fish Amount Swells From 850 TONNES To 1,177 TONNES In Yunnan, China?!

May 27, 2013 - CHINA - Statistics as of last night, 9:30 P.M., mojiang sinanjiang cage culture of fish in the reservoir area have died 1177 death 3.6 million tons of fish, these fish farmers from 86 households, with economic losses amounting to more than 13 million Yuan.

One of the farmers told Xinhua that they suffered heavy losses due to "drain the power station without prior notice, after the water level dropped fish of oxygen. "Mojiang County Government said the current priority is to rescue the live fish, minimize loss of fishermen, as well as good environmental work, dead fish processing in a timely manner.

Hundreds of people shuttling disposal arrangements for the dead fish

Sinanjiang hydropower station reservoir area in mojiang sinanjiang townships, that the Heung Yee Kuk and the dam slips between the Heung Yee Kuk, about 80 kilometers away from mojiang County.

Yesterday at about 10 o'clock in the morning, reporters arrived at the dead fish the worst-hit areas--the teeth. Geya belongs to that village, Township is located in the North of the sinanjiang, while the South is the dam slips, around that, there is a dam into the Grand River sinanjiang.

Flows through the teeth of the sinanjiang from East to West, entering the sinanjiang Township, in sinanjiang townships within, with the building of the sinanjiang hydropower station.

According to the introduction of the Township Party Committee Secretary Li Wenhong, although sinanjiang area between 3 town, but cage culture of fish in the area, mainly that the Heung Yee Kuk and the dam away, fishermen and a few settlers from other places, alone last year, 194 households engaged in cage, cage reaches more than 2,500 more, yield of 4,590 tons.

"Throughout the library district about 30 kilometers, about 12 km from the dam, cage is mainly concentrated in the area around the Yangtze River about 15 km. ”

For cage culture area of the sinanjiang teeth, before reporters had interviewed, when the water clear, cage neatly arranged, every house cage constantly dozens of meters to hundreds of meters apart.

But yesterday's seen, this picture is no longer there, where hundreds of meters away from waters, you can smell the stench of dead fish coming out, the water level fell, many cages scattered all across the River, the River, hundreds of people are shuttling to salvage such as dead fish, disinfection of water. - YNINFO News. [Translated]

GLOBAL VOLCANISM: The Global Volcano Report For May 27, 2013 - Mandatory Evacation As Red Alert Is Issued For Chile's Copahue Volcano; Many Low-Frequency Earthquakes Trigger Eruption Alert At Gamkonora Volcano; Low-Level Eruptions At Pavlof; Occasional Explosions Seen At Popocatépetl; Increase Seismic Activity At Telica; And Signs Of Unrest At Sabancaya!

May 27, 2013 - WORLDWIDE VOLCANOES - The following constitutes the new activity, unrest and ongoing reports of volcanoes across the globe.

A family watches the Copahue volcano spewing ashes from Caviahue, Neuquen province, Argentina on December 22, 2012. Chile began evacuating 2240 people after the volcano became increasingly active. Picture: AFP.

Copahue (Chile/Argentina): An eruption of the volcano could be imminent. SERNAGEOMIN and Civil Protection have raised the alert level to "red", based on the increasing earthquake activity under the volcano. Although so far no volcanic tremor (often a sign of eruptive activity) nor ash plumes have been detected via satellite, citizens of Caviahue in Argentina across the border from Copahue have reported explosions and incandescence from the volcano.

The most likely scenario for the near future is probably a small explosive eruption such as in December 2012. Schools in towns surrounding the volcano have closed due to the threat of an eruption, the Eruptions Blog reports.

Chile's Interior and Security Minister Andres Chadwick said the increased activity could lead to an eruption and officials will soon begin evacuating 2240 people, or 460 families, in a 25 kilometre radius.

"This evacuation is obligatory; it's not voluntary,'' said Mr Chadwick.

View of the Copahue volcano spewing ashes from Caviahue, Argentina last December. Picture: AFP.

Chile's Emergency Office says the evacuation could last about 48 hours, but could be delayed because of heavy rains.

The 2965-metre volcano sits in the Andes cordillera, straddling the border with Argentina's Neuquen province.

Argentine officials have issued a yellow alert. They overflew the area during the weekend and are monitoring the volcano with a network of web cameras. Access to the volcano is closed within a 4-kilometre radius on the Argentine side, but nearby towns, including Villa de Caviahue, are open for business.

The Copahue started spewing ash and gas in December, prompting a red alert then.

The volcano had a major eruption in 1992, according to the Mining Ministry's Sernageomin geology unit. It became highly active with blasts and gases in 2002, in its strongest activity in more than 20 years.

Gamkonora (Halmahera): Increased earthquake activity has triggered an eruption alert by VSI, who raised the volcano's status to 3 ("Siaga", "warning") out of 4 this morning. Indonesian volcanologists reported that the degassing plume from the summit crater of the volcano has turned dark, which suggests the presence of ash (probably phreatic in origin) since 25 May.

Gamkonora volcano.

The seismicity has shown significant changes with the appearance of harmonic tremor, low-frequency "tornillo" type-earthquakes (known from Galeras volcano in Colombia to often precede explosions). Volcanic-tectonic quakes (VA-type) related to rock fracturing have increased a lot, suggesting that magma at depth is intruding into new dykes... [read more]

Pavlof (Alaska Peninsula, USA)
: The eruption continues at low levels (both as surface lava emission and seismic activity).

AVO mentions that "during past eruptions of Pavlof, the style of eruptive activity fluctuated from higher to lower levels. Therefore, this apparent lower-level activity does not necessarily indicate that the eruption is ending. Although the activity to date has been characterized by relatively low-energy lava fountaining and ash emission, more energetic explosions could occur without warning that could place ash clouds above 20,000 ft... [read more]

Popocatépetl (Central Mexico)
: The volcano's activity has been reduced compared to a week ago, but still produces occasional explosions with plumes of up to 2 km in height, and many smaller emissions, accompanied by low-level harmonic tremor and a continuous steam plume rising about 1 km.

The Volcanic Alert Level remains at Yellow, Phase 3, and an exclusion zone of 12 km radius around the summit is in place.

Telica (Nicaragua)
: Seismic activity is on the increase again since about 24 May, but still far from the earthquake swarm earlier this year.

Seismic recording from Telica this morning (TELN station, INETER).

Sabancaya (Peru): The volcano has remained quiet, but is still showing signs of unrest. IGP scientists found evidence of eruptive activity (no fresh lava or pyroclastic deposits) inside the crater of of the volcano during a helicopter survey on 21 May. Only steaming and degassing were observed from the crater, that measures about 300-350 m in diameter and is 200 m deep.

The crater of Sabancaya volcano on 21 May 2013 (IGP).

Seismic swarm on 21 May (IGP).

2 major fumarolic areas are present in the N and SW sectors of the crater floor. Seismic activity is currently calm (as of 27 May), but occasional earthquake swarms still occur (such as on 21 May). Overall, a rise of volcano-tectonic quakes, likely related to new magma intrusions at depth, have been on the rise since early May.

Complete Earthquake list (worldwide) for May 27, 2013.

SOURCES: Volcano Discovery | News Australia.

MASS FISH DIE-OFF: Several Hundred Fish Found Dead On The Banks Of De Queen Lake In Arkansas - Fish Biologists Say Spawning Stress Created By "Crazy Weather" Is The Cause?!

May 27, 2013 - UNITED STATES - Fish biologists say spawning stress created by "crazy weather" is the cause of the deaths of several hundred crappie in De Queen Lake in southwestern Arkansas.

File Photo.

A fish kill was reported to the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission on April 21, when crappie were dying on the banks of the lake, Southwest Region District 7 Supervisor Eric Brinkman told the Texarkana Gazette ( ) for a story published Sunday.

"It was spawning stress. They were spawning during the crazy weather pattern where it was hot and then a period of cold. It was uncommon only crappie were dying this early in spring. It was spawning stress and a secondary infection," Brinkman said.

"Fish kills are not uncommon for crappie. This was unusual for being early in the spring," Brinkman said.

Brinkman said a fish pathologist needed to analyze crappie in the process of dying — not dead ones — so it caused a delay in finding out why the fish died.

"We finally found enough crappie dying so we could examine them," he said.

What they found, Brinkman said, was an infection: "It was a fungal infection on the gills leading to the deaths. It was such a severe infection, and they were not able to breathe while spawning."

Brinkman estimated the number of dead crappie, a popular fish among anglers, to be several hundred. He said there is no concern about the safety for human consumption of those that are being caught from the lake.
Fishermen who notice a fish kill should contact the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission at the Hope office, (870) 777-5580, or the state headquarters in Little Rock at (800) 364-4263. - The Republic.

PLANETARY TREMORS: Moderate 5.6 Magnitude Earthquake Shakes Northern Panama!

May 27, 2013 - PANAMA - A 5.6-magnitude earthquake struck northern Panama near its border with Costa Rica Monday, the U.S. Geological Survey said.

USGS earthquake location.

The earthquake, about 7 miles deep, was centered about 7 miles south-southwest of the border town of Guabito on the Caribbean Sea side of Panama, the USGS said.

The earthquake was about 9 miles west-southwest of Changuinola, Panama, and 49 miles south-southeast of Puerto Limon, Costa Rica.

Whether there were any injuries or damage was not immediately reported. - UPI.

USGS earthquake shakemap location.

Tectonic Summary - Seismotectonics of the Caribbean Region and Vicinity.
Extensive diversity and complexity of tectonic regimes characterizes the perimeter of the Caribbean plate, involving no fewer than four major plates (North America, South America, Nazca, and Cocos). Inclined zones of deep earthquakes (Wadati-Benioff zones), ocean trenches, and arcs of volcanoes clearly indicate subduction of oceanic lithosphere along the Central American and Atlantic Ocean margins of the Caribbean plate, while crustal seismicity in Guatemala, northern Venezuela, and the Cayman Ridge and Cayman Trench indicate transform fault and pull-apart basin tectonics.

Along the northern margin of the Caribbean plate, the North America plate moves westwards with respect to the Caribbean plate at a velocity of approximately 20 mm/yr. Motion is accommodated along several major transform faults that extend eastward from Isla de Roatan to Haiti, including the Swan Island Fault and the Oriente Fault. These faults represent the southern and northern boundaries of the Cayman Trench. Further east, from the Dominican Republic to the Island of Barbuda, relative motion between the North America plate and the Caribbean plate becomes increasingly complex and is partially accommodated by nearly arc-parallel subduction of the North America plate beneath the Caribbean plate. This results in the formation of the deep Puerto Rico Trench and a zone of intermediate focus earthquakes (70-300 km depth) within the subducted slab. Although the Puerto Rico subduction zone is thought to be capable of generating a megathrust earthquake, there have been no such events in the past century. The last probable interplate (thrust fault) event here occurred on May 2, 1787 and was widely felt throughout the island with documented destruction across the entire northern coast, including Arecibo and San Juan. Since 1900, the two largest earthquakes to occur in this region were the August 4, 1946 M8.0 Samana earthquake in northeastern Hispaniola and the July 29, 1943 M7.6 Mona Passage earthquake, both of which were shallow thrust fault earthquakes. A significant portion of the motion between the North America plate and the Caribbean plate in this region is accommodated by a series of left-lateral strike-slip faults that bisect the island of Hispaniola, notably the Septentrional Fault in the north and the Enriquillo-Plantain Garden Fault in the south. Activity adjacent to the Enriquillo-Plantain Garden Fault system is best documented by the devastating January 12, 2010 M7.0 Haiti strike-slip earthquake, its associated aftershocks and a comparable earthquake in 1770.

USGS earthquake tectonic plates.

Moving east and south, the plate boundary curves around Puerto Rico and the northern Lesser Antilles where the plate motion vector of the Caribbean plate relative to the North and South America plates is less oblique, resulting in active island-arc tectonics. Here, the North and South America plates subduct towards the west beneath the Caribbean plate along the Lesser Antilles Trench at rates of approximately 20 mm/yr. As a result of this subduction, there exists both intermediate focus earthquakes within the subducted plates and a chain of active volcanoes along the island arc. Although the Lesser Antilles is considered one of the most seismically active regions in the Caribbean, few of these events have been greater than M7.0 over the past century. The island of Guadeloupe was the site of one of the largest megathrust earthquakes to occur in this region on February 8, 1843, with a suggested magnitude greater than 8.0. The largest recent intermediate-depth earthquake to occur along the Lesser Antilles arc was the November 29, 2007 M7.4 Martinique earthquake northwest of Fort-De-France.

The southern Caribbean plate boundary with the South America plate strikes east-west across Trinidad and western Venezuela at a relative rate of approximately 20 mm/yr. This boundary is characterized by major transform faults, including the Central Range Fault and the Boconó-San Sebastian-El Pilar Faults, and shallow seismicity. Since 1900, the largest earthquakes to occur in this region were the October 29, 1900 M7.7 Caracas earthquake, and the July 29, 1967 M6.5 earthquake near this same region. Further to the west, a broad zone of compressive deformation trends southwestward across western Venezuela and central Columbia. The plate boundary is not well defined across northwestern South America, but deformation transitions from being dominated by Caribbean/South America convergence in the east to Nazca/South America convergence in the west. The transition zone between subduction on the eastern and western margins of the Caribbean plate is characterized by diffuse seismicity involving low- to intermediate-magnitude (Magnitude less than 6.0) earthquakes of shallow to intermediate depth.

The plate boundary offshore of Colombia is also characterized by convergence, where the Nazca plate subducts beneath South America towards the east at a rate of approximately 65 mm/yr. The January 31, 1906 M8.5 earthquake occurred on the shallowly dipping megathrust interface of this plate boundary segment. Along the western coast of Central America, the Cocos plate subducts towards the east beneath the Caribbean plate at the Middle America Trench. Convergence rates vary between 72-81 mm/yr, decreasing towards the north. This subduction results in relatively high rates of seismicity and a chain of numerous active volcanoes; intermediate-focus earthquakes occur within the subducted Cocos plate to depths of nearly 300 km. Since 1900, there have been many moderately sized intermediate-depth earthquakes in this region, including the September 7, 1915 M7.4 El Salvador and the October 5, 1950 M7.8 Costa Rica events.

The boundary between the Cocos and Nazca plates is characterized by a series of north-south trending transform faults and east-west trending spreading centers. The largest and most seismically active of these transform boundaries is the Panama Fracture Zone. The Panama Fracture Zone terminates in the south at the Galapagos rift zone and in the north at the Middle America trench, where it forms part of the Cocos-Nazca-Caribbean triple junction. Earthquakes along the Panama Fracture Zone are generally shallow, low- to intermediate in magnitude (Magnitude less than 7.2) and are characteristically right-lateral strike-slip faulting earthquakes. Since 1900, the largest earthquake to occur along the Panama Fracture Zone was the July 26, 1962 M7.2 earthquake. - USGS.

FIRE IN THE SKY: Major Solar System Disturbance - Planet Mars Hit By Space Rocks 200 Times A Year, More Than Previously Thought!

May 27, 2013 - MARS - Small space rocks are carving fresh craters into the Martian surface more often than previously thought, researchers say.

A new study finds that there are more than 200 asteroid impacts on the Red Planet every year.

These asteroids and comet fragments are usually no bigger than 3 to 6 feet (1 to 2 meters) across — about 10 times smaller than the meteor that exploded over Chelyabinsk, Russia, in February.

Small space rocks burn up in Earth's atmosphere, never making it to the ground, but they can do damage on Mars because the planet has a much thinner atmosphere.

The holes gouged out by these asteroids are typically at least 12.8 feet (3.9 meters) wide, the researchers say.

The 200-per-year space rockl impact rate for Mars was based on a portion of the 248 new Martian craters that have been identified in the past decade using images from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, a NASA spacecraft that has been circling the Red Planet since 2006.

"It's exciting to find these new craters right after they form," study researcher Ingrid Daubar of the University of Arizona, Tucson, said in a statement. "It reminds you Mars is an active planet, and we can study processes that are happening today."

One of many fresh impact craters spotted by the UA-led HiRISE camera, orbiting the Red Planet on board NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter since 2006. NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS/UA

The Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter's High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera snapped amazingly detailed pictures of the fresh craters at sites where before-and-after images had been taken by the orbiter's wider-view Context Camera and cameras on other orbiters studying the Red Planet, scientists said.

The same method could be used to estimate the age of other recent features on the planet, including some that may be the result of Martian climate change.

The new calculation of Mars' cratering rate dwarfs earlier estimates.

Based on studies of lunar craters and moon rocks collected by NASA's Apollo astronauts, scientists had calculated that there were just three to 10 yearly impacts on Mars.

"Mars now has the best-known current rate of cratering in the solar system," said HiRISE principal investigator Alfred McEwen.

The research was detailed online this month in the journal Icarus. - NBC News.