Archive for ‘Climategate’

April 30, 2011

Two hundred and thirty nine earthquakes struck the world today with most intense (M4-M6) in Japan and South America

[Edwin Crowel, Natural Disaster Contributor]

According to the US Geological Survey, two hundred and thirty nine earthquakes shook the world on Saturday 30th April 2011.

The most intense of them, between M4 and M6 – indicated in blue on the picture, struck Japan, the Pacific area, the USA and South America. No tsunamis, or damage reports have yet been made.

Earthquake in Japan

In the past few days, Japan was struck by more than 12 earthquakes at intensity M4-M5. Most occurred in proximity of the Fukushima prefecture. The area, and Japan in particular are notoriously unstable parts of the world for earthquakes which strike on more, or less, a daily basis – some earthquakes being more intense than others.

Analysts are commenting that having regard to Japan’s geological instability, it was a supreme act of recklessness for the nuclear facility in Fukushima with its known vulnerabilities to this kind of natural disaster, to have ever been commissioned.

April 30, 2011

Twister sisters in USA’s southeast take 300 lives and devastate region

[Peter Kinsley, Natural Disaster News Contributor]

Huffington Post: The tornadoes that wreaked havoc across southeast USA last week have caused the USA’s ‘deadliest twister disaster in nearly 40 years’.

The twisters took close to three hundred lives and turned vast, densely populated territories in Alabama, Georgia and South Carolina states into disaster zones.

Joshua Wurman, one of the world’s leading weather disaster experts and president of the Center for Severe Weather Research is reported to have said: “In my career I have never seen this many tornadoes or this many fatalities”.

April 2011 has broken all previous records so far: six hundred tornadoes of different magnitude have swept over the planet, thrice the amount of the so far windiest April of 1974 which brought 267 twisters. The surge is so great that scientists are wondering whether climate change might be the reason.

A 2008 report from the U.S. Global Change and Research Program, a federal inter-agency project under the supervision of  the White House, found that increases in greenhouse gases in the atmosphere could lead to an increase in severe storm conditions that make tornadoes possible. However, opinions vary  whether climate change is the culprit behind the USA’s current extreme weather conditions.

According to Howard Bluestein, meteorology professor at Oklahoma University. “This is something that happens every 10 or 20 years when everything comes together like this. This is just natural variability.”

April 12, 2011

£280 billion per year – nitrogen pollution is European Union’s new ‘bailout’ cost

[Jana Kintsky, EU News Contributor]

BBC News: According to a recent report of an environmental scientist Roger Harrabin, the EU spends enormous amounts of money annually, around £280 billion,  on tackling nitrogen pollution related matters.

Man-produced  nitrogen in its harmful variation now is everywhere:  in the atmosphere, in the ground as well as our bodies. It comes from the vast amounts of  toxic element put into the soil for agriculture (70 per cent), livestock farming and other related industry sectors.

Despite the significant spendings from EU every year to contain the problem, this is the first time a combined study on nitrogen reduction and its impact on human body had been conducted.

There have been and still are many attempts to control nitrogen but we believe the big challenge is to link existing policy areas and make them work together, says Mr. Harrabin who is hopeful that the study will result in measures from the EU on more stringent nitrogen-emissions control which is costing all in Europe, in the long run, incredible sums of wasted money.

April 4, 2011

Fiji and Indonesia in April 4th 2011 major earthquakes

[Tom Hobbes, Natural Disaster Contributor]

Huffington Post: The earth continues to shake as a huge earthquake measuring 6.7 stuck Indonesia at around 3 a.m. today Indonesian time. No casualties, or damage have been reported. A few hours earlier, Fiji also suffered a major earthquake measuring 6.4.  A damage/ casualty report is yet to come in.

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March 29, 2011

United Kingdom’s Rape of Latvia

The Latvian timber sector is vital to its economic survival. However, the exploitation of its trees by the United Kingdom’s timber industry is proving fatal to the country’s economic and biological health.

The timber industry represents more than a third of Latvia‘s exports and earned Latvia around one billion euros last year. In that regard, Latvia’s timber export can be compared with Sweden’s and Austria‘s both in size and value.   With the UK as its most significant market to the tune of some EUR 400 million annually, eighty percent of Latvia’s trees are felled for other EU member states. Sawn timber is more than 90% of exported volume.

Whilst this is all good news for this nation struggling for survival in hard times, the European Union’s turning a blind eye to laws that prevent the exploitation of forests in member states coupled with the greed of UK and Latvian merchants are moving to reduce Latvia to a ghost nation in few years time bereft of its main source of income – timber exports.

A recent Aljazeera report outlines the dangers for this fragile state and asks the question of the EU and UK governments – why are you letting this happen?? Click on the picture to view the video.

[Andris Versenko, Baltics Contributor]

March 25, 2011

Is the Large Hadron Collider dangerous?

Ever since its inception, the Large Hadron Collider has been the object of controversy among scientists as well as ordinary people. That is because, it is widely hoped that the collider will help us to understand the origins of the Universe.

Some are expecting to gain the first insight into so far hypothetical particles, such as the Higgs boson which supposedly gives all the existing things mass, and Dark matter.

The Collider is probably the largest nuclear research project in modern times. Over 10,000 scientists from more than 100 states from universities and laboratories all over the world, have been working on its design and construction. Its building costs exceed 3 billion EUR.

On 10th September 2008, the project initiated proton rays which are supposed to collide (hence the name of the grid)  and a few days later the first collision took place.

So far due to technical reasons the device has been working on half-power, but it is planned to start it off at full speed in 2014.

Eventually particle collisions at an extraordinary speed – and the word ‘extraordinary’  is true, since the massive magnets can make the particles travel for up to 999.999 per cent the speed of light –  are expected to give us an insight into the existence of anti-matter, black holes, parallel dimensions and travel in time.

Is the Collider dangerous? Well, let’s wait and see.

[Technology Contributor]

March 16, 2011

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