Wednesday, February 18, 2015

MONUMENTAL SOLAR SYSTEM ANOMALIES: The Sun Goes Quiet - Weakest Solar Cycle In More Than A Century!

February 18, 2015 - SPACE
- The conceit that human production of carbon dioxide is capable of driving the earth’s climate is running smack into the sun. CO2 accounts for a mere 0.039% of the atmosphere, while the sun accounts for 99.86% of all of the mass in our entire solar system. And Ol’ Sol is not taking the insult lightly. Vencore Weather reports:
For the past 5 days, solar activity has been very low and one measure of solar activity – its X-ray output – has basically flatlined in recent days (plot below courtesy NOAA/Space Weather Prediction Center). Not since cycle 14 peaked in February 1906 has there been a solar cycle with fewer sunspots.
We are currently more than six years into Solar Cycle 24 and today the sun is virtually spotless despite the fact that we are still in what is considered to be its solar maximum phase. Solar cycle 24 began after an unusually deep solar minimum that lasted from 2007 to 2009 which included more spotless days on the sun compared to any minimum in almost a century.

There are several possible consequences to the solar quiet. The first is counterintuitive:

By all Earth-based measures of geomagnetic and geoeffective solar activity, this cycle has been extremely quiet. However, while a weak solar cycle does suggest strong solar storms will occur less often than during stronger and more active cycles, it does not rule them out entirely. In fact, the famous Carrington Event of 1859 occurred during a weak solar cycle (#10) [].

In addition, there is some evidence that most large events such as strong solar flares and significant geomagnetic storms tend to occur in the declining phase of the solar cycle. In other words, there is still a chance for significant solar activity in the months and years ahead.
Our dependence on electronic devices is such that extreme solar events could have serious consequences.  However, it is the likely impact on atmospheric temperatures that threatens the “consensus” on global warming:
…if history is a guide, it is safe to say that weak solar activity for a prolonged period of time can have a negative impact on global temperatures in the troposphere which is the bottom-most layer of Earth’s atmosphere - and where we all live. There have been two notable historical periods with decades-long episodes of low solar activity. The first period is known as the “Maunder Minimum”, named after the solar astronomer Edward Maunder, and it lasted from around 1645 to 1715. The second one is referred to as the “Dalton Minimum”, named for the English meteorologist John Dalton, and it lasted from about 1790 to 1830. Both of these historical periods coincided with below-normal global temperatures in an era now referred to by many as the “Little Ice Age”. In addition, research studies in just the past couple of decades have found a complicated relationship between solar activity, cosmic rays, and clouds on Earth. This research suggests that in times of low solar activity where solar winds are typically weak; more cosmic rays reach the Earth’s atmosphere which, in turn, has been found to lead to an increase in certain types of clouds that can act to cool the Earth.
It is common sense to believe that the sun has more influence on global temperatures than a trace gas. With a 17 year “pause” in the predicted outcomes of an increase in atmospheric CO2, warmists face more and more awkward questions. If temperatures actually decline as a result of an expected decrease in solar activity, at some point the game will be up, and the billions of dollars a year squandered on climate modeling that doesn’t predict what happens will have to dry up.

GLOBAL ECONOMIC MELTDOWN: Another Banker Bites The Dust – NYC Financial Analyst, Married To JP Morgan Exec, Dies Of Exposure During SOLO Hike In New Hampshire Mountains?!

Kate Matrosova, 32, apparently died of exposure to the extreme temperatures, officials said.  Kate Matrosova/Facebook

- A New York City adventure junkie who worked as a financial analyst was found dead Monday after she hiked alone into treacherous conditions high atop New Hampshire’s rugged backcountry.

The body of Kate Matrosova was located Monday afternoon — 24 hours after she activated an emergency beacon — between Mount Madison and Mount Adams, the state’s Fish and Game Department said.

Facing blistering winds exceeding 100 mph and temperatures about 30 degrees below zero, Matrosova died of exposure in the extreme temperatures, authorities said.

“Unfortunately, a lot of the coordinates that we received over the night were all over the place within a mile circumference,” Fish and Game Lt. Jim Goss told WMUR.

Matrosova, a 32-year-old from Omsk, Russia, worked as a credit trader at BNP Paribas, according to LinkedIn.

Matrosova activated an emergency beacon between Mount Madison and Mount Adams, according to the Fish and Game Department.

Matrosova’s Facebook page shows a life lived in pursuit of the extreme: Paintball, white-water rafting, boating, rock climbing and mountaineering.

Husband Charlie Farhoodi, a vice president at J.P. Morgan, reportedly dropped off Matrosova early Sunday morning at the base of the mountains.

She was alone and planned to hike to the top of Mount Madison, WMUR said, before heading through Mount Adams, Mount Jefferson and Mount Washington, which at about 6,300 feet is the highest peak in the Northeast.

“I guess if you are gonna hike in this type of weather you need to be in a more sheltered area, not up on an open exposed ridgeline,” Goss said. “There’s just no room for error in a place like that.”

Search and rescue crews couldn’t reach the area overnight because of extreme weather. A National Guard crew flew over the area with a helicopter on Monday morning but couldn’t see anything because of blowing snow and had to turn back.
A team made up of Fish and Game officers, Mountain Rescue Services members and Androscoggin Valley Search and Rescue members braved 108 mph winds and frigid temperatures to reach the area. - NY Daily News.

INFRASTRUCTURE COLLAPSE: Massive Explosion At ExxonMobil Refinery In Torrance, California - Shake Homes Miles Away; Two Individuals Suffer Minor Injuries!

- A large explosion was reported Wednesday morning at an ExxonMobil oil refinery in the southern California city of Torrance.

Law enforcement officials in Torrance, southwest of Los Angeles, described the incident to the LA Times as a “second-alarm fire explosion” that occurred at around 8:50 a.m. local time early Wednesday, according to the refinery’s own account.

A local NBC News affiliate said there have been reports of two individuals suffering from minor injuries as of 10:30 a.m. PST. Some area schools have ordered people to “shelter in place” as the cause of the explosion is investigated, according to local media reports.

WATCH: Burn off after the refinery explosion in Torrance.

"Emergency procedures have been activated to address the incident, and employees are working with the appropriate agencies," a public affairs official with ExxonMobil said in a statement given to NBC News on Wednesday morning. "Our main concern is for the safety of our employees and our neighbors. We are accounting for all personnel and still evaluating the cause of the incident, or the occurrence or amount on any damages."

Torrance Refinery (Photo from

According to local news network KTLA, the ExxonMobil refinery encompasses roughly 750 acres in Torrance, CA and processes upwards of 155,000 barrels of crude oil each day.

Details are still developing, but the Torrance Police Department told reporters at the LA Times that there is no evidence of any air quality issues. Witnesses claim the explosion caused the ground to shake similar to the effects of an earthquake, however, and said they saw ash falling from the sky, according to the paper.

WATCH: ExxonMobil Refinery Blast, Explosion and Fire in Torrance.

"I thought it was an earthquake, like someone hit the back of my car," resident Drew Magtoto told NBC News after the initial explosion. "There's still smoke coming out, but it wasn't as bad as earlier."

Another resident, according to the network, said he could feel the explosion from around seven miles away. - RT.

INFRASTRUCTURE COLLAPSE: Light Cessna 162 Plane Crash Lands At Archerfield Airport, Queensland, Australia - No Injury To The Pilot!

A light plane had a "heavy landing" at Archerfield Airport on Wednesday, February 18. Photo: Penny Dahl, Australian Traffic Network.

February 18, 2015 - QUEENSLAND, AUSTRALIA
- A pilot walked away from a rough landing at Archerfield Airport that left a light plane on its side on Wednesday morning.

Archerfield Airport Corporation spokeswoman Kerry Reeves said the pilot of the plane, a Cessna 162, was not injured.

"The main runway of the airport is open to aircraft," she said.

"AAC has notified appropriate authorities and they will investigate the incident, which occurred before the control tower began operating at 7am.

"The aircraft left the runway and clipped a fence, and is extensively damaged."

It is understood a student pilot was at the plane's controls when it landed about 6am.

A Queensland Ambulance Service spokeswoman said paramedics were not called to attend the incident. - SMH.

ICE AGE NOW: Here Comes The Siberian Express - Sub-Zero Wind Chills And Record-Breaking Cold Expected In Chicago!

February 18, 2015 - CHICAGO, UNITED STATES
- The brutal cold is back. An arctic front brings high temperatures in the single digits and wind chills below zero to the Chicago area on Wednesday.

The average high for February 18 is 36 degrees. Today, the thermometer will only reach 9 or 10 degrees, ABC7 Meteorologist Tracy Butler said. Wind gusts will be between 10 and 20 mph and there could be snow flurries.

Health experts advise people to dress in layers and avoid being outside for too long. Frost bite can set in and lead to hypothermia within minutes during extreme cold.

"It's bone-chilling. But as long as you're not out too long, it's not too bad," Kory Zasadzinski said.

Mary Solomon walks the Adams Street Bridge from Union Station to her office every workday.

"It's terrible," she said.

WATCH: Record-breaking cold expected in Chicago.

James Futrell lives in the Loop and normally rides his bike to work.

"It's definitely cold. I feel bad for people who have to stay out here for sure," Futrell said.

Chicago commuters are advised to dress in layers whether they're driving or taking public transportation.

"My main concern is sometimes the Amtrak freezes up. I come all the way down here and then have to go back home. So as long as everything's running, I'm OK," said Stan Lee, who takes the train to work.

The Illinois Tollway activated 24-hour road patrols Tuesday. Patrol teams will scour roadways for stranded drivers. If a motorist runs out of gas, gets a flat or needs any other kind of help, they should call *999.


Record-breaking cold could be on the way Thursday, Butler said. Low temperatures for tomorrow are expected to be -8 or -9, which would oust the current record-low of -7 set in 1936. Tomorrow's high temperature will hover around 2 degrees.

The National Weather Service said a Wind Chill Advisory will be in effect from 6 p.m. Wednesday to noon on Thursday for the entire Chicago area. Wind chill values are expected to be between -15 and -30 degrees.


The cold weather caused a big, icy mess along Chicago's lakefront.

Chicago Park District officials closed the Lakefront Trail from Oak Street to North Avenue, a 3-mile stretch, because of large ice boulders covering it.

That portion of the path will stay closed until crews are able to clear the trail. - ABC7News.

INFRASTRUCTURE COLLAPSE: Cars Submerged And Property Destroyed As Pipe Burst Floods Hollywood Hills, California - Over 100,000 Gallons Of Water Released; Water Main Break Average Three Times A Day In Aging Los Angeles!

Still from vine video/Sarah Parvini

- A water main break sent 100,000 gallons of water flooding into the Hollywood Hills neighborhood of Los Angeles early Wednesday morning, engulfing cars and destroying property.

Marty Adams, water systems manager for the LA Department of Water & Power, described the break as “unfortunate but not a disaster.”

Still from vine video/Sarah Parvini

Still from vine video/Sarah Parvini

Still from vine video/Sarah Parvini

He told the LA Times the cast-iron pipe that broke was installed in 1926, and had not leaked for the past 10 years.
LADWP PIPE LEAK: Cast iron pipe has leaked at least 100,000 gallons, officials say.
— Matt Stevens (@ByMattStevens) February 18, 2015
DWP officials said last year that water main leaks and breaks occurred on average three times a day across Los Angeles. Hollywood Hills has had 48 pipe leaks between January 2010 and December 2014.

WATCH: Vine video/Sarah Parvini.

Damage has been localized, but it could take up to 15 hours to stop the leak, said Adams. “This is an indication of what’s going on in an aging city.” - RT.

DISASTER PRECURSORS: Omen – The Latest Incidents Of Strange Animal Behavior, Mass Animal Die-Offs, Appearance Of Rare Creatures And Warnings From Mother Nature!

February 18, 2015 - EARTH - The following constitutes the latest reports of unusual and symbolic animal behavior, mass die-offs, beaching and stranding of mammals, and the appearance of rare creatures.

Fish with 2 mouths caught in Australian lake

The South Australian fisherman uncovered the double mouthed bream on Monday

A string of rare and freakish fish have been emerging from Australian seas of late.

In the wake of the discovery of Goblin shark in New South Wales and prehistoric frill shark in Victoria, another rare and unusual fish has been uncovered in South Australia.

On Monday afternoon, a Riverland fisherman was taken aback when he netted a bony bream with two mouths.

Garry Warrick, of Barmera in South Australia, told Daily Mail Australia that after 30 years of fishing in the area he had never come across a double mouthed bream.

'It was very unusual. I have been fishing here for 30 years, and I have come across a few deformed fish, but never anything quite like this.'

'The two mouths are actually joined together. The top one opens and closes while the bottom one stays closed. It's amazing it was alive.'

He said he once caught a fish that had a dolphin shaped head.

Warrick usually stores packs packs the deformed fish away for fertiliser, but this time he put it in the freezer and took some images which his wife uploaded online. - Daily Mail.

12 dolphins trapped in Maldives lagoon die, 22 others freed

The pod of dolphins trapped in Nadella island's lagoon.

22 out of the pod of dolphins trapped inside Nadella Island's lagoon have been freed and released into the ocean but 12 had died, the island's council said on Saturday.

Faisal Najeeb, the island council's chair said that 38 dolphins had accidentally wandered in to the island's - located in Gaafu Dhaalu atoll - lagoon. He added that there were about four dolphins left to free.

"We caught the dolphins on a net and released them into the ocean" Najeeb said "12 of them died in this process".

"Catching them with nets was the only option we had" he continued.

Maldives National Defence Force (MNDF) officers and islanders noticed the trapped dolphins and began work to free them on Thursday.

Faisal said that two dolphins were saved on the first day, 16 on Friday, and two have been freed thus far on Saturday.

"The remaining four dolphins will be freed today" Najeeb added.

He also said that the dolphins were each about 8 feet in length.

The Environment Protection Agency (EPA) had said that this is first case where so many dolphins were found trapped.

- Haveeru Daily.

Say What?! Weird animal behaviour: Residents claim hippo killed and 'ate' 3 goats in Kenya

Hippo charging

Residents have called on the Kenya Wildlife Service to remove a hippo that has been terrorizing them. They said it killed and ate three goats on Sunday (Hippos are herbivourous and can not eat meat). Francis Ndwiga, who works at a firm in Gachuriri village, said the hippo ate the goats and dragged one to River Thiba. He said he woke up when he heard the goats bleating. Assistant chief David Njagi said residents are living in fear. - All Africa.

Chemical contaminants suspect in mystery of Alaska chickadee and other bird beak deformities

A black-capped chickadee with a deformed beak in the Hillside area of Anchorage, 2010. About 7 percent of Alaska black-capped chickadees have the beak
deformity, which is spreading to other birds such as ravens and crows, and to other parts of the world, including Great Britain.  © John Schoen

When black-capped chickadees and some other birds in the Anchorage area began turning up in the late 1990s with elongated, weirdly curved or twisted beaks, biologists and bird lovers began to worry.

The deformities range from slight to gross and can have severe consequences for the birds if they are unable to use their beaks to pick up food or groom feathers so their bodies retain heat.

"People, a lot of times when they first see them, think the bird is carrying a twig in its beak," said Colleen Handel, a U.S. Geological Survey biologist who has devoted several years to studying the problem.

The tiny black-capped chickadees are the most afflicted, with 7 percent of Alaska adults developing deformed beaks. The deformities are also showing up in other birds, including ravens and crows, though not as frequently, Handel said.

Now the beak-deformity outbreak has spread north to Fairbanks, south to the Puget Sound region and -- for an unknown reason -- across the globe to Great Britain, where it is showing up among starlings, tits and other species, Handel said.

"It looks like it might be a global problem and not strictly located in Alaska," she said.

Scientists still do not know the cause. But new research by Handel and Caroline Van Hemert, another USGS biologist, suggests that environmental contaminants -- specifically, organochloride compounds -- might be linked to the deformities. It's a broad category of contaminants that includes pesticides like DDT and related chemical formulas, PCBs, chemical compounds used in fire retardants and numerous substances that are no longer used or targeted for phase-out under the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants.

The new research is detailed in a study published in the journal Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry.

Handel and Van Hemert analyzed data collected over several years. They and fellow scientists took blood samples from the chickadees in Anchorage. They tested unhatched eggs left behind in nest boxes after the parents and newborn chicks had departed. They tested tissues of several euthanized birds.

They found that several organochloride compounds were "ubiquitous in chickadee tissues at all life stages," in the words of their study, but that levels were very low.

Two specific contaminants -- heptachlor epoxide and PCB-123 -- were significantly associated with the birds that had beak deformities, but they have not been known in the past to be linked to such deformities. Aside from those results, nothing obvious about contaminant levels jumped out, but there was one key difference between deformed-beak birds and normal birds: The birds with deformed beaks had higher incidences of chromosomal damage of a type associated with toxic substances introduced into the environment.

But if contaminants are the problem, what is their source? Even though Southcentral Alaska is the most densely populated and developed region, it is still not heavily industrialized, Handel notes.

"There's no smoking gun in this study, which is frustrating," she said.

Possible contaminant sources might be old wastes from the area's military bases and training sites, pesticides used to combat the region's spruce-bark beetle infestation or compounds to quell wildfires, her study said. Also possibly involved is far-away pollution that is transported in global atmospheric currents to the cold north, Handel said.

Some possible causes of the beak deformities appear to be ruled out, or on the verge of being ruled out.

The problem is not something encountered in southern wintering grounds because black-capped chickadees and the other affected birds are year-round residents. "So whatever is happening to these guys is happening in Alaska," Handel said.

It is not something in the sunflower seeds that are shipped up from the Lower 48 and placed by local bird lovers in outdoor feeders. The new study considered the possibility that commercial birdseed holds dangerous levels of contaminants, but tested samples did not back up that theory.

It is not selenium from agricultural drainage, which was identified as the cause of beak deformities suffered by birds in the 1980s in California's San Joaquin Valley.

It is not the collection of contaminants that birds ingested in the Great Lakes region in the 1970s and 1980s, when beak deformities were among a suite of physical impairments showing up in the region's birds. Those problems were blamed on various types of industrial pollution, including PCBs and hydrocarbon contaminants. Birds with deformed beaks included terns, herons and cormorants -- birds that acquired environmental contaminants from the fish they ate and then passed on those contaminants to the eggs they laid.

In the California and Great Lakes cases, chicks with deformed beaks were emerging from their eggs. That is not the case in Alaska, where the only birds with the deformed beaks are adults, Handel said.

"It seems to be something that's happening to them as adults, and not when they're in the egg," she said.

The search for a cause of the beak deformities continues. There is likely to be a more precise examination of the possible role of contaminants, and even viruses are being studied as a possible cause, Handel said.

The USGS Alaska Science Center has a program dedicated to studying the deformities and is taking reports from the public about sightings of affected birds. - Alaska Dispatch News.

Rare Bean goose from the tundra turns up in Sariska, India

Bean Goose. © Ronnie Dentremont

After a gap of almost 66 years, Bean Goose was spotted at Sariska wildlife sanctuary between February 1 to 11. Last time this rare bird was seen in Bikaner in the year 1948.

Bean geese are found in the arctic tundra region but migrate from there during winters. Out of three, two species, bar-headed goose and grey leg goose have visited Sariska in the past. They have been often spotted at Mansarovar lake and Kankwadi lake. But Bean Goose has come after long time and now Sarsika holds the record of hosting all three species.

"There was only one Bean Goose that came and was spotted from February 1 to 11. It was seen along with the grey leg goose," said RS Shekhawat, field director, Sariska. He added, "Sariska has become the first place in the country where all three of them have visited".

After 1948, Bean Goose was never spotted in Rajasthan.

According to experts, geese are spotted very rarely. Earlier they were seen at Hari Barage in Punjab in 2003, Saikhowa National Park in Dibhugarh, Assam in 2007 and at Jim Corbett in 2011.

They were also spotted in Nepal in 1991 and 1993. - The Times of India.

Two children attacked by family dog in Glendale, Arizona

Two people, a teenager and a child under 10, were bitten Tuesday by a family dog in Glendale

Glendale Police are investigating a dog bite that sent two children to the hospital.

According to Glendale Police they got a call of a dog bite from the family dog around 1:22 p.m. Monday. Officer Breeden with the Glendale Police Department described the dog as a pit bull.

It all happened near 67th Avenue and Mountain View Road.

8-year-old Xavier was passing by the home and heard the screaming, he ran over to the home and called 911.

"I heard somebody yelling animal and hurt," said Xavier.

The dog bit an 8-year-old boy on the arm and leg and a 13-year-old girl was bitten in her lower extremities.

Paramedics rushed both of the children to area hospitals in serious but non life-threatening condition. The 8-year-old was flown to Phoenix Children's Hospital.

Neighbors that live nearby say they know of the dog.

WATCH: Two children bit in family dog attack.

"My son and his daughter and I were walking their dog, and the dog literally came out of the house and attacked the dog and my son. And after that we're kind of leery about the dog because he's so out of control, you don't know what he is going to do," said a neighbor.

They now call Xavier a hero for calling 911.

"I told them something is going on at this house, and because everybody is yelling animal and somebody is hurt, and I want police and at least animal control here," he said.

Maricopa County Rabies and Animal Control are responding to the scene and plan to euthanize the pit bull immediately at the request of the family. - Fox10Phoenix.

Sperm whale dies off the Philippines coast

The Sperm whale carcass floating off the coast of Bangkorohan village in Calauag town, Quezon province.  © Quezon police

A sperm whale that had been stranded near a coastal village in the town of Calauag, Quezon province, died yesterday, an environment official of the province said.

Manny Calayag, community coordinator of the Quezon-Environment and Natural Resources Office, said the sperm whale, one of the world's largest animals, died around 7:30 a.m. in the shallow portion of the waters off Lamon Bay near the coast of Bangkorohan village.

The whale was found by fishermen a kilometer away from the shore on Tuesday, said Senior Insp. Noel Divino, Calauag police chief.

He said the whale, measuring 40 feet long and 10 feet tall, was found with a wound on the right part of the belly.

"The whale is almost as long as a bus," Divino said in a phone interview.

Local policemen secured the whale until authorities from the municipal veterinary office arrived.

Calayag said experts from the provincial veterinary office and the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) traveled to Calauag at dawn yesterday to help in the rescue operation.

The whale, unfortunately, was already dead when the group reached Calauag yesterday morning.

Calayag said he recommended a necropsy of the whale to determine the cause of death. The whale's gender has yet to be determined.

According to the website of the Oceanic Research Group, sperm whales are the largest toothed whales in the world and perhaps the most abundant of great whales. - Philippine Daily Inquirer.

Spike in sick and dying bats 'sparks concern' in Broome, Australia

Photo: Broome wildlife carer Jan Martin puts sick and dead
bats in her freezer for a post-mortem. (ABC News: Erin Parke )
A spike in cases of a deadly bat virus in some parts of Australia's north has sparked concern, with dying animals being found in the streets close to schools and childcare centres.

Australian bat lyssavirus is similar to rabies, causing a rapid death if passed from an animal to a human.

In recent months, it has been detected in 11 bats in the West Australian town of Broome in the Kimberley region.

Prior to that, there had been only two cases identified in Western Australia in a decade.

There has also been an increase in sick bats being found in Queensland.

Senior Public Health Nurse Ashley Eastwood is based in Broome and has been monitoring the numbers.

"In 2014, we became aware that something was happening in the bat colony with these cases popping up," he said.

"We don't know exactly what's caused it.

"There are investigations going on through the Department of Parks and Wildlife, and the Department of Agriculture, wondering what's actually going on in the colony.

"There's been speculation perhaps lots of fires around last year, there's a particularly hot season, and that could be disturbing that colony."

Human infections occurred in Australia in 1996, 1998, and 2013 and proved fatal in all three cases.

Mr Eastwood said the concern in Broome was that the dying bats had been located right in the middle of 'Old Broome', on thoroughfares used by children to get to school each day.

He said the Health Department was running an education campaign targeting local schools.

"We have 'children and bats' posters and flyers in schools, just providing children with some education around bats," he said

"It's saying to children that if you find an injured or orphaned flying bat or dead bat, not to handle it, but to let an adult know who will notify parks and wildlife, or a wildlife carer."

People are being urged not to touch a bat they find sick or injured on the ground and try to avoid being swooped.

If someone is scratched or bitten, they are advised to wash the wound thoroughly for at least five minutes with warm soapy water, and seek medical attention immediately.

Freezing bats for science

Wildlife carer Jan Martin is the on the frontline of virus detection in the Kimberley.

Every time she is given a sick or dying bat, she freezes it in her backyard in Broome, to ensure it can be tested.

"I'll pass it on to the Department of Agriculture so they can organise a proper post-mortem," she said.

"They usually dissect the brain to see if the animal's got the virus or not."

Ms Martin said she was worried about the number of sick animals being found.

"We used to get the odd one now and then, but this year's been absolutely horrific, the number turning up sick," she said.

"It's just been strange - Australia-wide they're just gob-smacked about it, because it's never heard of, having so many at the same time." - ABC Australia.

Hundreds of fish 'suddenly die' in Georges River, 'reason unknown' in NSW, Australia

A fisherman called the Environmental Protection Authority after noticing the river surface was clogged with dead fish, leading to a snap investigation of the site.

There have been suggestions a chemical spill caused the fish deaths but authorities are still unsure as to what happened.

An EPA spokeswoman said early tests of the water found the pH, conductivity and oxygen levels were normal.

Liverpool Council was ­notified and, due to the enormity of the task, emergency services were called in to help clean up.

St Andrews Fire Station duty commander Rob Jansen said four boats were ­required to set up boom nets and collect the dead fish over the weekend.

Carp, bass, mullet, yellow bellies and eels were all found floating in the river.

Hundreds of dead fish were found floating in the Georges River on Saturday.

Boom nets were set in place to contain the dead fish.

The dead fish clogged the Georges River on the weekend.

Firefighters and SES volunteers were brought in for assistance.

“We have absolutely no idea what caused it, it ­depends on the findings of the EPA,” Mr Jansen said.

“The full set of test results are due back to the EPA in the next couple of days and this should give us an idea of the type of pollution present, whether there is pesticide or metals impacting fish, for ­example,” the EPA spokeswoman said.

The latest incident follows Sydney Water Corporation agreeing to pay $100,000 to Liverpool Council after a pollution incident at the Glenfield Water Recycling Plant in Macquarie Fields in November 2013.In that incident, the equivalent of 153 Olympic swimming pools of sewage wastewater was discharged into Bunbury Curran Creek, which flows into the Georges River. - Daily Telegraph.

Fish kill discovered in Manila Bay, Philippines

Who's surprised by this?

"The Bureau of Fisheries and Acquatic Resources (BFAR) has revealed that oxygen depletion in the waters near the Manila Yacht Club may have caused a fish kill yesterday morning, Monday, February 16," report Evelyn Macairan and Czeriza Valencia in The Philippine Star.

The report noted: "The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) confirmed that dozens of dead mullet fish were seen floating in Manila Bay near the breakwater."

WATCH: Fish kill in Manila Bay.

BFAR found out that the dissolved oxygen levels from three sampling stations were at 1.2. That is, as the report indicated, "way below the normal oxygen level of 5 or more" to be able to sustain marine life.

The PCG likewise added, "Apparently, the water quality in the Manila Yacht Club breakwater is polluted due to stagnation, hence the cause of the fish kill."

The PCG also pointed out that "there had been no chemical or oil spills that could cause the fish kill." - Manila Coconuts.

Hundreds of dead fish found in a dam in Castelo Branco, Portugal

Hundreds of dead fish were found in the dam Taleigueira, near the south exit of Castelo Branco, said source of local GNR.

The same source said the GNR is to ascertain the cause of fish death in that reservoir which is near the industrial area of ​​Castelo Branco.

"A patrol Protection Agency of Nature and Environment (SEPNA) Castelo Branco went to the site and confirmed the situation [fish kills]. Water samples were collected and some fish, which followed for analysis," said the captain Miguel Silva .

The White Castle GNR also produced an official report that went to the prosecutor.

"We have a survey of the dam and tributaries that converge there and it's all being evaluated," said Miguel Silva. According to this official, this time "is premature and unwise to proceed with any causes" for the death of fish in that reservoir. - JN.

Major fish kill found in a creek in Haute-Saone, France

© France 3 Franche-Comté, S.Velluet

According to the first elements of the investigation by the police of Jussey, the fish kill may have been caused by the accidental release of ammonia nitrogen in the Rigotte up on a farm in the town of La Rochelle.

This Monday, February 16, the water police (ONEMA) was on hand in the morning: the mayors of surrounding municipalities and the ARS (Regional Health Agency) have been prevented.

Samples are being analyzed at a laboratory in Vesoul.
Haute-Saône Fishing Federation complained on Sunday late afternoon. - France-Comte. [Translated]

ICE AGE NOW: Another Snowstorm To Pound Turkey - 5 To 12 Inches Expected!

February 18, 2015 - TURKEY
- Barely a week after the last snowstorm pounded Turkey, another is bringing snow across much of the country as a trough of low pressure digs southward.

Moisture being pulled to the north from the Mediterranean Sea will combine with cold air from Russia to produce a widespread and long-lived snowstorm.

While western Turkey was hit hard by the previous storm, the worst of this snowstorm is expected to occur across central and east-central Turkey.

The higher terrain of northwestern Turkey can still get a significant snowfall, while Istanbul experiences rounds of snow squalls.

Additional accumulating snowfall is expected in Istanbul Tuesday night through Thursday. Rain will mix with the snow at times, especially during the afternoon hours and when light precipitation falls, but snow will be the primary problem.

Snow totals will vary greatly across the Istanbul area; however, the hardest hit areas could get total snowfall of 15-25 cm (6-10 inches) through Thursday. The period of heaviest snowfall is expected on Wednesday when low visibility and snow-covered roadways are expected.

Snow began on Monday across many areas in central and eastern Turkey, but the heaviest snow will fall into Wednesday in areas such as Erzincan and Erzurum. Occasional snow may even continue to fall into Thursday in some places.

Snow accumulations of 13-25 cm (5-10 inches) are expected to be widespread in central Turkey with local amounts in excess of 30 cm (12 inches). In the highest terrain, total accumulations could near 60 cm (24 inches), which is great news for the many ski resorts scattered across the region, but bad news for travelers.

Due to the long duration of the snow that is expected in central Turkey, residents that live in smaller towns and villages could be isolated for several days until the snow ends and roads and cleared. Even travel in larger cities will be difficult with schools and some businesses likely to close.

This storm system will have long-lasting and far-reaching effects on the region through the week. While snow falls in Turkey, rounds of showers will move into areas from Syria to Israel during the course of the week. As cold air sinks to the south, snow is expected to fall in the mountains from western Syria to northern Israel Thursday into Friday.

It may not be until the weekend that the region has significantly drier conditions.

- AccuWeather.

MONUMENTAL DELUGE: Widespread Flooding – The Latest Reports Of High Tides, Heavy Rainfall, Flash Floods, Sea Level Rise, And Catastrophic Storms!

February 18, 2015 - EARTH - The following list constitutes the latest reports of high tides, heavy rainfall, flash floods, widespread flooding, sea level rise and catastrophic storms.

Over 320 mm of Rain in 12 Hours – 6 Killed in Floods in Córdoba, Argentina

Streets were turned into raging torrents after a particularly severe rainstorm

Local media in Argentina are reporting that heavy rain has caused deadly flooding in the province of Córdoba, central Argentina.

La Nacion say overflowing rivers caused flooding that has left 6 people dead, 4 missing and forced 400 to evacuate.

La Nacion say that as much as 320 mm of rain fell in just 12 hours in some areas. WMO report that 79 mm of rain fell at Cordoba Airport in 24 hours from 14 to 15 February 2015.

Flooding in Cordoba

The severe weather has affected several part of the province, including the city of Córdoba, where authorities have declared an “alert and climate emergency” for 72 hours. Power has been cut off to prevent electrocution.

Evacuations have been carried out in Córdoba City, Punilla and Sierras Chicas.

According to Buenos Aires Herald, other affected areas include Ascochinga, Jesús María, Juárez Celman, Río Ceballos, Unquillo and Mendiolaza.

 WATCH: Inundación (Flood) en Villa Allende, Cordoba, Argentina.

1 Missing in Floods in Corsica, France, after 190 mm of Rain in 24 Hours

ECHO report that heavy rainfall affected north-eastern Corsica, France, on 16 February, with more than 190mm of rain falling in Campile and Ghisoni, Haute-Corse, in a 24 hour period.

Corse Matin report 89 mm in Pietralba, 84.7 mm in Oletta, and 70.4 mm Lugo-di-Nazza.

Media and French Civil Protection reported one person missing in Biguglia after she was swept away in her vehicle by raging flood waters of an overflowing river on Monday 16 February 2015..

Firefighters and divers were all searching for the woman. Search and rescue teams have also used a helicopter to help find the missing woman.

Searches were called off on Monday after more bad weather, but resumed again Tuesday 17 February 2015.

- Floodlist.

ICE AGE NOW: New Brunswick Resident Shares Viral Video Of Insane Snowfall - Tries To Dig Himself Out Of A "9-FOOT" Snow Bank Built-Up In Front Of His Door!

A man walks near a snow plow after a winter storm hit Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island February 16, 2015. Canadian media
reported that 80 cm (2.6 feet) of snow hit the province, breaking a single storm record.   © Reuters/Nathan Rochford

February 18, 2015 - NEW BRUNSWICK, CANADA
- One New Brunswick man made it his mission to prove the East Coast has it worst than the rest of the country by uploading a YouTube video documenting just how much snow they've received.

It worked. You win, East Coast. We concede.

Kevin McGrath, a resident of Dieppe, probably wasn't expecting his home video showing off the amount of snow congregating around his house to hit almost 84,000 views on YouTube in two days but that's precisely what happened.

WATCH: Stormageddon 2015 in New Brunswick.

In the video, McGrath starts off by showing the "9-foot" snow bank that has built up in front of his door. He tries to dig his way out of it, but after about 30 seconds admits defeat and moves to another potential exit point.

In the garage, the situation is a little less dire, but not by much. McGrath is able to see the top half of his car and figures he and his wife can jump and squeeze their way out of the house.

With a perfect amount of dad jokes and cussing thrown in for a soundtrack, the video is a terrifying hoot. - Toronto Sun.

FIRE IN THE SKY: Early Morning Fireball Streaks Across Pittsburgh Sky - American Meteor Society Received Over 30 Reports!

- Anyone awake and looking skyward early Wednesday morning in the Pittsburgh area got a surprise.

A bright fireball was reported by more than 30 people and captured by NASA cameras, according to the American Meteor Society, which records such sightings.

The meteor was seen at 4:45 a.m. from parts of Pennsylvania, Ohio and New York, according to a NASA blog.

The bright fireball was seen on NASA cameras and posted to YouTube by the meteor society. The video below comes from the Allegheny Observatory near Pittsburgh, the NASA blog says.

The Lehigh Valley area got a view of a bright meteor less than two months ago.

Anyone who sees a fireball can report it to the American Meteor Society on the nonprofit group's website.

WATCH: Fireball over Pittsburgh.

- Lehighvalleylive.