Tag Archive: Environmental disasters


SRC Location UTC Date/time M D     INFORMATION

USGS Bangladesh Mar 18 02:56 AM   4.6   15.7   MAP

EMSC Bangladesh Mar 18 02:56 AM   4.6   16.0   MAP

EMSC Eastern Turkey Mar 18 02:46 AM   3.4   5.0   MAP

USGS Northern Iran Mar 18 02:38 AM   4.4   25.9   MAP

EMSC Northern Iran Mar 18 02:38 AM   4.6   5.0   MAP

EMSC Simeulue, Indonesia Mar 18 02:01 AM  4.6   35.0   MAP

USGS Simeulue, Indonesia Mar 18 02:01 AM  4.6   35.0   MAP

USGS Southern E Pacific Rise Mar 18 01:59 AM  4.7   10.1   MAP

EMSC Southern E Pacific Ris Mar 18 01:59 AM  4.7   10.0  MAP

EMSC Central Turkey Mar 18 01:32 AM    2.6   6.0    MAP

EMSC S.western Siberia, Russia Mar 18 01:29 AM   3.9   10.0  MAP

USGS S. Alaska Mar 18 00:53 AM  2.7   6.5    MAP

USGS Off E Coast Of Honshu, Japan Mar 18 00:36 AM  4.9   49.7  MAP

EMSC Off E Coast Of Honshu, Japan Mar 18 00:36 AM  5.0   40.0  MAP

GEOFON Off E Coast Of Honshu, Japan Mar 18 00:36 AM   5.0   10.0  MAP

Philippines –

The number of people who were injured in a 5.8-magnitude earthquake in the southern Philippines rose to 45. Dozens of mall goers got injured when the strong quake caused a stampede at Gaisano Capital duriing its grand opening at around 4pm Friday afternoon. Some government buildings were damaged.


New Zealand – Quake damage at Canterbury hospitals could see patient services disrupted for several years to come. The region’s hospitals have suffered considerable damage as a result of the ongoing quakes and many key facilities need extensive repair work.


Storms and Flooding

Tropical Cyclone Lua (17S) Set to Make Landfall Over Australia – March 17th, 2012

approximately 150 nm north of Port Hedland, Australia, has tracked southeastward at 13 knots over the past six hours. Port Hedland radar imagery indicates the LLCC passed over Rowley Shoals at approximately 01:00am local time.

Animated infrared satellite imagery indicates that the system has increased its horizontal extent while maintaining tightly-curved bands wrapping into a well-defined low-level circulation center (LLCC). Recent microwave satellite imagery reveals the deepest convection is location along the western semi-circle of the LLCC, which is due to light to moderate (10-20 knots) easterly vertical wind shear. The current intensity is assessed at 90 knots. Maximum significant wave height is 32 feet. Sustained 10-minute winds were reported at 73 knots.

TC 17S is forecast to continue tracking southeastward, making landfall east of Port Hedland in approximately 12 hours. The system is forecast to reach a peak intensity of 95 knots prior to landfall and then rapidly weaken with dissipation over land forecast by TAU 36.



There have been reports of extensive damage on the Pilbara coast but so far no casualties. Cyclone Lua crossed the coast as a category four storm but has weakened to category one as it moves inland. Australia’s meteorology bureau says gusts of up 100km/h (60mph) are still possible near the cyclone centre. It has issued warnings for the eastern Gascoyne, western Interior and northern Goldfields areas for today. Early on Saturday, Lua crossed the coast between Port Hedland and Broome and caused extensive damage to some remote Pilbara towns, uprooting trees and damaging buildings. Recovery teams were on their way to assess the damage.As the cyclone gathered intensity and swept in off the Indian Ocean, Australia’s main iron ore mines – which are some of the biggest in the world – shut down. (map)


Stormy weather results in power outages, more fallen trees



Friday night’s stormy weather resulted in power outages for hundreds of Walnut Creek residents and the closure of a state highway for hours.

On Highway 13 in Oakland, just south of the Park Ave. Exit, a large tree came down around 10 p.m. Friday night and blocked the southbound lanes of the highway.


Extreme Temperatures/Weather

Britain’s heritage buildings feel the extreme weather

: heat and cold. Experts fear they are fighting a losing battle as increasingly erratic conditions take their toll. The curators responsible for preserving Britain’s historic sites already have to cope with falling subsidies and the effect of the economic gloom on visitor numbers. Now they have another problem: our increasingly extreme and erratic weather. Freezing temperatures, drought and torrential rain are all proving increasingly damaging to sites that, in some cases, are almost 1,000 years old.
Earlier this month, parts of the roof of St John the Baptist Church in Woodhurst, Cambridgeshire, collapsed, with masonry falling from the chancel, causing damage that will cost up to £40,000 to repair. Experts said the problems were caused by the drought’s effect on soil that is found particularly in the east of England. The trees close to the walls of the building sucked up too much water from the ground after two years of low rainfall, causing the clay to contract. This moved the foundations, and the walls cracked. Finding funding for the necessary repairs is becoming increasingly difficult.
Other churches have been affected in similar fashion. St Mary’s, in the village of Mundon, Essex, had to undergo significant repairs as a result of clay shrinkage, which led the building’s foundations to start “falling apart”. In the Church of St Andrew, at Abbots Ripton, also in Cambridgeshire, the arcades were found to be moving on the foundations, causing cracks. Without repair work, it is likely that the whole building will collapse.
St Andrew’s Church at nearby Wood Walton, which was recorded in the Domesday Book, is also facing serious problems. “We think it is due to the climate. It may be just two or three years aberration, but the climate has definitely had an impact.”
The most recent Heritage At Risk register was published in August. There were 5,828 entries. Although the effect of increasingly extreme weather is difficult to quantify, many list erosion and weathering as a problem. The cold winters of 2009 and 2010 also caused serious problems at several sites, including Castle Acre Priory in Norfolk, a monastic site dating back to 1090, and the 12th century Framlingham Castle in Suffolk. “The frost is a real issue. In the past two severe winters, hard frost caused huge damage to standing ruins in the east of England. The chalk in the stonework deteriorates. We understand the process and know we can’t stop it.”
In Norwich, the medieval city walls have suffered damage as a result of the salt used on the roads in cold weather. The National Trust has also pointed to a rise in threats from extreme weather – specifically torrential rainfall. “The weather is much more extreme in the UK than it used to be. Between 1985 and 2007 I have never had to turn out due to emergency flooding. It has been four times since then.” Severe flooding in Tewkesbury affected several National Trust properties, including Basildon Park. The 12th century Tewkesbury Abbey also had water come in through the doors. In 2009, the devastating floods in Cockermouth, in the Lake District, hit the birthplace of William Wordsworth. National Trust employees had to wade through waist deep water to salvage the collection of furniture, artworks and documents. “Our emphasis must now be on prevention. We are trying to put aside more [money] than we ever have before to deal with this issue.”


America’s weather is stuck on extreme. –

Nearly 11 feet of snow has fallen on Anchorage, Alaska, this winter. That’s almost a record, and it’s forcing the city to haul away at least 250,000 tons of snow. Not much snow has dropped on the Lower 48 states this year.
The first three months of 2012 have seen twice the normal number of tornadoes. And 36 states set DAILY HIGH TEMPERATURE RECORDS Thursday. So far this month, the U.S. has set 1,757 DAILY HIGH TEMPERATURE RECORDS. That’s similar to the number during last summer’s heat wave. Six RARE, but not unprecedented, March tornadoes struck Thursday in Michigan, which also set 26 HEAT RECORDS. Temperatures were in the 80s in some parts of the state. Nationwide, there have been 132 tornadoes confirmed in January and February, with preliminary reports of more than 150 already in March.


Climate Change

Europe’s chief scientist warns against climate delays

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The European Union cannot use the economic slowdown as an excuse to delay action on fighting climate change, the bloc’s first-ever chief scientific adviser has warned.

Molecular biologist Anne Glover took on the newly created role reporting to European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso at the start of this year, having previously served as chief scientific adviser to Scotland’s devolved government.


Solar Activity

Asteroid 2012 EG5 Close Call 04/02/2012 – Condition Code 9


Weird weather: heat, twisters, 250K tons of snow

WASHINGTON (AP) — America’s weather is stuck on extreme.

Nearly 11 feet of snow has fallen on Anchorage, Alaska, this winter. That’s almost a record, and it’s forcing the city to haul away at least 250,000 tons of snow. Yet not much snow has dropped on the Lower 48 this year.




Magnitude 4.6 earthquake, Cyprus Region

UTC Date / Time Mar 13 10:44 AM

Depth 10 km GEO: Longitude 31.260 GEO: Latitude 35.210



Magnitude 4.5 earthquake, CYPRUS REGION

UTC Date / Time Mar 13 10:44 AM

Depth 16 km GEO: Longitude 31.540 GEO: Latitude 35.610



Magnitude 4.9 earthquake, Vanuatu

UTC Date / Time Mar 13 19:43 PM

Depth 188 km GEO: Longitude 166.959 GEO: Latitude -13.127




In the Indian Ocean –
Tropical cyclone 17s (Lua) was located approximately 285 nm north of Learmonth, Australia.

Australia – The cyclone threat to Darwin is easing, with a tropical low heading further south than forecast and failing to gain strength as expected.


Volcanic Activity


ItalyThe volcanic caldera on the picturesque tourist island of Santorini is showing signs of unrest. But researchers detecting the caldera’s movement say it doesn’t necessarily mean an eruption is imminent. The Greek island was the site of one of the most massive volcanic eruptions in history 3,600 years ago. That eruption, which created tsunamis 40 feet (12 meters) tall, may have spawned the legend of the lost city of Atlantis. The volcano last erupted in 1950, on a much smaller scale.
Global positioning system (GPS) sensors placed on the caldera have detected renewed movement after decades of peace. The earth around the caldera (a depression at the top of a volcano) is deforming, or expanding outward. GPS instruments on the northern part of Santorini have moved between 1.9 and 3.5 inches (5 to 9 centimeters) since January 2011. “What we’re seeing now is the first significant deformation and the first deformation that has any significant earthquake activity associated with it.” In the same time period, the magma chamber under Santorini has swollen by almost 500 million cubic feet (14 million cubic meters).
It’s unlikely that the deforming caldera portends an eruption. Excavations of extinct volcanoes suggest that 90 percent of the time, below-ground magma movements don’t end in eruption. A similar caldera system, the Long Valley Caldera in California, started deforming in 1980. It then quieted again until 1989, repeating the cycle in 1997 and 2002, with nary an eruption. If a Santorini eruption did occur, it would be nothing like the Minoan eruption of 1650 B.C. That eruption was a once-in-100,000-year event, and the expansion of the magma chamber happening now is only 1 percent of what would have gone on prior to the ancient blast. Geophysicists are keeping an eye on the caldera, however. An eruption could generate local tsunamis within the Santorini archipelago, damaging ports and disrupting ship traffic. Even if the volcano doesn’t erupt, the shifting caldera could increase earthquake risk, and the island cliffs are vulnerable. “We don’t need an eruption to have earthquake-induced landslides.” There’s no telling how long the deformation will continue, but it could stretch years or decades, perhaps cycling between activity and peace. “It is one of very few of these really large caldera volcanoes. So any information we gather from ongoing activity adds significantly to our database of how these systems evolve.”




Fukushima’s Dangerous Myths

The myth that Fukushima radiation levels were too low to harm humans persists, a year after the meltdown. A March 2, 2012 New York Times article quoted Vanderbilt University professor John Boice: “there’s no opportunity for conducting epidemiological studies that have any chance for success – the doses are just too low.” Wolfgang Weiss of the UN Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation also recently said doses observed in screening of Japanese people “are very low.”



Severe Rainfall – Drought

Mexico withers under worst drought in 71 years
Country’s extreme conditions could cause widespread hunger for years to come

San Luis de la Paz, Mexico — Odon Leon has grown vegetables in San Luis de la Paz for 50 years, planting tomatoes, peppers, and onions. He says the arid community is fortunate to have wells they can use to water crops, but the water is getting scarcer amid Mexico’s worst drought in 71 years. This year, Mr. Leon could only irrigate half of what he usually does, meaning his water-dependent onions suffered: The harvest was a fifth of what it usually is, the lowest ever.


Louisiana: 15 inches of rain in five hours

States of emergency were in force Tuesday in four Louisiana parishes after torrential rain left homes and roads under several feet of water. Hundreds fled their homes and dozens of motorists had to be rescued.

Flooding closed the major highway through St. Landry Parish, and many roads across the four parishes remained closed on Tuesday.





2MIN News Mar13: Weather, Quakes, Geomagnetic Update



Magnitude 4.5 earthquake, RYUKYU ISLANDS, JAPAN

UTC Date / Time Mar 11 07:25 AM

Depth 73 km GEO: Longitude 127.020 GEO: Latitude 26.170


Magnitude 4.5 earthquake, Ryukyu Islands, Japan

UTC Date / Time Mar 11 07:25 AM

Depth 72.6 km GEO: Longitude 127.022 GEO: Latitude 26.168


Magnitude 4.7 earthquake, Hokkaido, Japan region

UTC Date / Time Mar 11 08:33 AM

Depth 78.5 km GEO: Longitude 143.223 GEO: Latitude



Magnitude 4.7 earthquake, SOUTHERN IRAN

UTC Date / Time Mar 11 10:08 AM

Depth 12 km GEO: Longitude 51.810 GEO: Latitude 29.980



Magnitude 5 earthquake, SOUTH OF FIJI ISLANDS

UTC Date / Time Mar 11 11:10 AM

Depth 104 km GEO: Longitude -176.940 GEO: Latitude-24.690



Magnitude 4.8 earthquake, Vanuatu Islands

UTC Date / Time Mar 11 16:08 PM

Depth 257 km GEO: Longitude 168.590 GEO: Latitude -17.010


Magnitude 4.5 earthquake, Andreanof Islands, Aleutian Islands, Alaska

UTC Date / Time Mar 11 17:58 PM

Depth 35.8 km GEO: Longitude -173.279 GEO: Latitude 51.677



Magnitude 4.6 earthquake, ANDREANOF ISLANDS, ALEUTIAN IS.

UTC Date / Time Mar 11 17:58 PM

Depth 80 km GEO: Longitude -173.120 GEO: Latitude 51.860


Magnitude 5.2 earthquake, Andreanof Islands, Aleutian Islands

UTC Date / Time Mar 11 19:02 PM

Depth 10 km GEO: Longitude -173.240 GEO: Latitude 51.630



Magnitude 4.8 earthquake, ANDREANOF ISLANDS, ALEUTIAN IS.

UTC Date / Time Mar 11 20:34 PM

Depth 33 km GEO: Longitude -173.430 GEO: Latitude 51.900



Magnitude 5 earthquake, Philippine Islands Region

UTC Date / Time Mar 11 21:31 PM

Depth 160 km GEO: Longitude 122.260 GEO: Latitude 20.090



Magnitude 5 earthquake, Southern Mid Atlantic Ridge

UTC Date / Time Mar 11 22:30 PM

Depth 10 km GEO: Longitude -16.740 GEO: Latitude -41.090



Magnitude 4.6 earthquake, SOUTH OF PANAMA

UTC Date / Time Mar 12 05:03 AM

Depth 40 km GEO: Longitude -82.550 GEO: Latitude 5.450



Solar Activity





The Oceans


Ocean life on the brink of mass extinctions: study

(Reuters) – Life in the oceans is at imminent risk of the worst spate of extinctions in millions of years due to threats such as climate change and over-fishing, a study showed on Tuesday.

Time was running short to counter hazards such as a collapse of coral reefs or a spread of low-oxygen “dead zones,” according to the study led by the International Program on the State of the Ocean (IPSO).



Oceans Acidifying Faster Today than in the Past
Source: NSF press release

The oceans may be acidifying faster today than they did in the last 300 million years, according to scientists publishing a paper this week in the journal Science.

“What we’re doing today really stands out in the geologic record,” says lead author Bärbel Hönisch, a paleoceanographer at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory.

“We know that life during past ocean acidification events was not wiped out–new species evolved to replace those that died off. But if industrial carbon emissions continue at the current pace, we may lose organisms we care about–coral reefs, oysters, salmon.”





Magnitude 5 earthquake, Near East Coast of Honshu, Japan

UTC Date / Time Mar 09 05:31 AM

Depth 10 km GEO: Longitude 141.860 GEO: Latitude 37.090


Magnitude 6.6 earthquake, Vanuatu Islands

UTC Date / Time Mar 09 07:09 AM

Depth 10 km GEO: Longitude 169.580 GEO: Latitude -19.060


Magnitude 4.8 earthquake, Vanuatu

UTC Date / Time Mar 09 07:36 AM

Depth 35.4 km GEO: Longitude 169.256 GEO: Latitude -19.159


Magnitude 4.9 earthquake, Vanuatu

UTC Date / Time Mar 09 08:21 AM

Depth 22.2 km GEO: Longitude 169.921 GEO: Latitude -19.247


Magnitude 4.6 earthquake, Fiji Islands Region

UTC Date / Time Mar 09 10:25 AM

Depth 615 km GEO: Longitude -178.570 GEO: Latitude -17.950


Magnitude 4.6 earthquake, PAGAN REG., N. MARIANA ISLANDS

UTC Date / Time Mar 09 12:46 PM

Depth 224 km GEO: Longitude 145.380 GEO: Latitude 18.880


Magnitude 5.2 earthquake, Eastern Honshu, Japan

UTC Date / Time Mar 09 17:25 PM

Depth 10 km GEO: Longitude 140.130 GEO: Latitude 37.030


Magnitude 5 earthquake, Off East Coast of Honshu, Japan

UTC Date / Time Mar 09 18:19 PM

Depth 10 km GEO: Longitude 142.160 GEO: Latitude 35.700


Magnitude 4.5 earthquake, SOUTH OF JAVA, INDONESIA

UTC Date / Time Mar 09 21:27 PM

Depth 71 km GEO: Longitude 112.970 GEO: Latitude -9.060


Magnitude 5.2 earthquake, TARAPACA, CHILE

UTC Date / Time Mar 10 02:26 AM

Depth 87 km GEO: Longitude -68.790 GEO: Latitude -19.660


Series of Earthquakes Rumble Across the Globe

A series of moderate to strong earthquakes has rattled several parts of the globe including Iran, China, the Philippines and parts of the South Pacific in the past 12-24 hours.

There have been no reports of serious damage or fatalities from these quakes thus far and no tsunami warnings were issued for areas that could be impacted.

A similar earthquake earlier this week did injure 10 people in the Philippines.


Quake Hits West China; No Injuries Reported

An earthquake has struck the far west of China but there were no immediate reports of injuries or damage.

The U.S. Geological Survey said Friday that the 5.8 quake struck about 7 a.m. (2300 GMT) in the southern part of Xinjiang region.


Quake researchers warn of Tokyo’s ‘Big One’

A year on from one of the biggest earthquakes in recorded history, Japanese scientists are warning anew that Tokyo could soon be hit by a quake that will kill thousands and cause untold damage.

Greater Tokyo, home to 35 million tightly packed people, has seen a three-fold increase in tectonic activity since the magnitude 9.0 undersea quake that unleashed a killer tsunami last March.


Japan earthquakes over time

Figures compiled by the ABC reveal that since the massive earthquake in Japan a year ago the country has been rattled by more than five times as many tremors as usual. That includes 10 aftershocks of magnitude seven or greater. Using figures provided by Japan’s meteorological agency, the ABC found that there have been more than 9,000 significant tremors under and around Japan since last year’s March 11 earthquake. That compares with 1,300 for all of 2010. As well as 10 quakes of magnitude seven or greater in the past year, there were more than 100 that were more violent than magnitude six. Recent media reports suggest Tokyo has a 70 per cent chance of being hit with a major earthquake in the next four years.


Iliamna sees earthquake activity

Iliamna volcano experienced several episodes of increased earthquake activity over the last three months, according to a news release issued Wednesday by Alaska Volcano Observatory officials. One of the episodes is currently ongoing and is characterized by numerous small earthquakes.

The increase in activity may be related to movement of magma at depth and additional observations, including an airborne gas sampling and observation flight, are being planned to help constrain this interpretation, according to the release.



Volcanic Activity

Bezymianny volcano erupts again

Friday saw a new eruption of the Bezymianny volcano on the Kamchatka Peninsula in the Russian Far East.

Earlier in the day, the volcano spewed ash up to 8 kilometers high, seismologists said, adding that the eruption does not pose a threat to population centers in the area.


Colombian volcano waking up

The Nevado del Ruiz volcano, whose eruption 26 years ago killed around 25,000 people, is showing signs of activity after nearly 20 years laying dormant, said Colombian geological group Ingeominas Thursday.

Early Friday morning, geologists completed an observational fly-over with the assistance of the Colombian Air Force, during which they photographed the Nevado del Ruiz volcano and noted “ash on the glacier, near the crater rim and on the eastern flank,” as well as a 4,500 foot gas column at the mouth of the volcano. During the same day a seismic tremor was reported along with an increase in sulfur dioxide emissions.


Explosion detected at Alaska’s Cleveland volcano 

Mount Cleveland, located about 45 miles from the community of Nikolski, is isolated on an uninhabited island and — despite the volcano’s regular eruption pattern — has no real-time monitoring equipment. Cloud cover prevented visual observation or satellite imagery of the eruption. Officials said this was similar to eruptions in December, when small ash clouds dissipated quickly and didn’t affect air traffic.


Tropical Storms

In the Indian Ocean –

-Tropical cyclone 14s (Irina) was located approximately 455 nm east-southeast of Maputo, Mozambique.

-Tropical cyclone 16s (Koji) was located approximately 1065 nm east-southeast of Diego Garcia.



 NSW floods: Worse to come, warns minister. The damage bill from NSW’s flood crisis is heading “way north” of $500 million and April is set to heap even worse misery on the sodden state. Communities remain on tenterhooks as a fresh wave of rain threatens homes and property in NSW’s southwest, central west and suburban Sydney. “Sadly we’re in a La Nina and the weather forecasters are telling me that April will be the worst that we’ve faced yet.”
The State Emergency Service (SES) issued evacuation warnings for people in Richmond Lowlands, Pitt Town and Gronos Point at 6.30am (AEDT). Several caravan parks on the banks of the Hawkesbury River, between Windsor and Sackville, were also put on high alert. “We are asking those people to start preparing themselves now for possible evacuations throughout the day.” Communities in southwest Sydney were also on high alert.
More than 1000 people remain in evacuation centres at Griffith, in southwest NSW, with the Murrumbidgee River due to peak again today. The Bureau of Meteorology has warned of major flooding in Narrandera, southeast of Griffith, and the neighbouring communities of Darlington Point, Carathool and Hay. Flooding was also expected in Forbes and Bega today, with hundreds of residents in both communities already evacuated.

Residents in parts of Sydney’s northwest

have been told to prepare for evacuation as the Hawkesbury River floods. Parts of Australia are seeing some of THE WORST FLOODING IN 160 YEARS. Dozens of residents in New South Wales had to be rescued when they became stranded in their cars. Shops are short of supplies as locals buy up food and other essentials.

No ordinary downpour

wild weather swamped Sydney and the south coast in THE WETTEST WEEK IN NEW SOUTH WALES’ HISTORY. “It is VERY RARE to have such persistent, RECORD-BREAKING RAINFALL over such large areas of NSW and Victoria.”



Wednesday’s high was a RECORD-BREAKING 11.7 C.

Portland, Maine, hits RECORD-BREAKING 60 degrees

The calendar still says winter, but Maine is experiencing spring-like weather. The temperature climbed to 60 degrees Thursday afternoon in Portland. The previous high for the date was 56, set two years ago.

The UNUSUAL Weather is Creating Angst Among Maine Maple Syrup Producers

The RECORD-BREAKING temperatures and the possibility of more warm weather over the next two weeks is not a welcome prospect.

From Texas to India to the Horn of Africa, Concern about Weather, Water and Crops

Hardly a week goes by without new reasons to be concerned about the impact of changing precipitation patterns and mounting water stress on food production.
This past week, officials in Texas cut off irrigation water to rice farmers downstream of reservoirs depleted by the worst one-year drought in Texas history. Even with recent rains, lakes Buchanan and Travis remain at 42 percent of capacity. Farmers, who pay the least for water, will be denied their liquid lifeline in order to prevent curtailments to urban and industrial water users. It was the FIRST TIME IN ITS 78-YEAR HISTORY that the Austin-based Lower Colorado River Authority had cut off water to farmers.
On February 29, United Nations officials announced that the crucial March through May rainy season in the Horn of Africa would likely fall short again this year. The warning comes on the heels of last year’s drought, the worst in sixty years, and the devastating famine it triggered. Scientists analyzed data on rainfall, temperature, ocean currents and the strength of the La Niña before making their forecas. “This is not good news for farmers in areas which have been affected by agricultural drought in recent years. We must plan for the probability that rainfall will be erratic and there will be long dry spells which will impact on crop production and food security.” The forecast comes just weeks after the United Nations downgraded Somalia’s food crisis from a famine to a “humanitarian emergency.” Across the Horn of Africa, some 9.5 million people still require emergency assistance.
And then from India comes perhaps the most worrisome news of the week. Researchers there have found that India’s monsoonal rainfall, upon which much of the nation’s agriculture depends, is becoming less frequent and more intense. Scientists found that global climate change can cause departures from the historic monsoonal norm, which, on balance would lead to lower yields of rice, maize, cotton, soybeans, and other kharif (monsoonal) crops. During the rabi (dry) season, higher temperatures could cut yields of wheat, potatoes, and vegetables. The agriculture commissioner for Maharashtra, an important crop-producing state, says that farmers in his state already are seeing yield impacts that he attributes to climatic change.
Still another report from the last week casts a pall over California’s upcoming harvest. State officials found that the water content of California’s mountain snowpack is only 30 percent of normal historic levels for this point in the season. Officials estimate they will deliver only 50 percent of the water requested from the State Water Project, a system of reservoirs and canals that distributes water to 25 million Californians and nearly one million acres of irrigated farmland. “Absolutely, we should be concerned.”
These reports are snapshots of weather and climate-related warnings and in no way present a picture of the world’s food situation. But they are the kinds of warnings that now seem to routinely overlay already troubling global water trends – from widespread groundwater depletion to dried up rivers and lakes. What’s emerging is an interconnected web of risks, with the threads of water stress, food insecurity and rising population and consumption now magnified by extreme weather and climatic change.
The portrayal of water security in the U.S. intelligence community’s 2012 worldwide threat assessment clearly warns that “over the next 10 years, water problems will contribute to instability in states important to US interests.” It also underscores groundwater depletion as a risk to both national and global food markets.
But it fails to spotlight the potential for social and political instability stemming from the interplay of extreme weather, water shortage and food prices – even though we got a sneak preview of this destabilization in 2007-08 and again in 2011. The food riots that erupted in Haiti, Senegal, Mauritania and a half dozen other countries as grain prices climbed in 2007-08 are a harbinger of what is to come. Extreme weather in 2010 – including the off-the-charts heat wave in Russia that slashed the country’s wheat harvest by 40 percent, the epic flood in Pakistan, widespread drought in China, and the massive flooding following the decade of drought in Australia – caused an even higher spike in food prices in early 2011. Some analysts have linked the skyrocketing food prices with the violent protests that unleashed the Arab Spring. Climatic change and its impacts on the global water cycle guarantee that we’ll increasingly find ourselves outside the bounds of normal. The implications for food security, social cohesion and political stability are of the utmost concern both to our national security and our humanitarian impulse. It’s time to connect the dots – and to prepare, as best we can, for the new scenarios unfolding before our eyes.

Solar Activity

Exploding Sun To Fuel 1000s Of Super-Tornadoes

CONTRIBUTOR: TERRENCE AYM. When the sun becomes angry super space storms scour Earth. For the next 14 months the sun will be the angriest it’s been since 1859. The massive storms electrify the geomagnetic field, affects the Arctic vortex, and…


The space weather storm that was forecast to be the strongest in five years has fizzled out

and ended up causing no impact to power grids or modern navigation systems.


Scientists say that the storm could still have adverse effects as it passes

“The magnetic field in the solar wind is not facing in the direction of danger. But it could change, into the early evening.” Although space weather scientists have seen no more significant activity since the solar flares that launched the current storm, scientists around the globe are still keeping an a close watch on the Sun. “The part of the Sun where this came from is still active. It’s a 27-day cycle and we’re right in the middle of it, so it is coming straight at us and will be for a few days yet. We could see more material. ” But regardless of its eventual extent, this episode of solar activity is a preview of what is to come in the broader, 11-year solar cycle.
“The event is the largest for several years, but it is not in the most severe class. We may expect more storms of this kind and perhaps much more severe ones in the next year or so as we approach solar maximum. Such events act as a wake-up call as to how our modern western lifestyles are utterly dependent on space technology and national power grid infrastructure.”



New strain of flu found in bats

‘And even though they don’t have all the answers yet, infectious disease experts say just knowing this strain exists is giving them a head start at creating a vaccine.’ 06 Mar 2012 The blockbuster movie “Contagion” showed just how easy it is for an emerging disease to spread across the world. Now, some say the cause of that fictional flu is at least one step closer to reality. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is tracking creating something new. It’s not the bird flu. Not swine flu. But rather, the bat flu. Researchers in Guatemala ‘found’ a new strain of influenza in bats and are now watching to see how and if it can transmit to humans. Bats are known to carry emerging diseases.


Mystery Illness Kills Three in Maryland Family

‘We have to wonder if it may be a mutant strain of flu virus.’ 06 Mar 2012 Three members of a Maryland family died after contracting severe respiratory illnesses and a third family member is hospitalized in critical condition, the Calvert County Health Department announced Tuesday. Officials are trying to identify the illness that killed an 81-year-old woman and two of her children, both in their 50s, who cared for her in her home in Lusby. Another of the woman’s children is seriously ill at Washington Medical Center. “The first thing that comes to mind is influenza,” said Dr. William Schaffner, chair of preventive medicine at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville. “But when they’re a cluster like this, we have to wonder if it may be a mutant strain of flu virus. There’s been some concern about a swine flu variant.”



As sea levels rise, Kiribati eyes 6,000 acres in Fiji as new home for 103,000 islanders

By The Associated Press

Fearing that climate change could wipe out their entire Pacific archipelago, the leaders of Kiribati are considering an unusual backup plan: moving the populace to Fiji.

Kiribati President Anote Tong told The Associated Press on Friday that his Cabinet this week endorsed a plan to buy nearly 6,000 acres on Fiji’s main island, Viti Levu. He said the fertile land, being sold by a church group for about $9.6 million, could provide an insurance policy for Kiribati’s entire population of 103,000, though he hopes it will never be necessary for everyone to leave.


Uploaded by on Sep 26, 2011

Richard Heinberg- whose latest book describes The End of Growth- isn’t looking for when the recession will end and we’ll get back to “normal”. He believes our decades-long era of growth was based on aberrant set of conditions- namely cheap oil, but also cheap minerals, cheap food, etc- and that looking ahead, we need to prepare for a “new normal”.

The problem, according to Heinberg, is our natural resources just aren’t so cheap and plentiful anymore, and he’s not just talking about Peak Oil, Heinberg believes in Peak Everything (also the title of one of his books).

Heinberg thinks for many, adjusting to a life where everything costs a bit more, could be very hard, but he also thinks the transition to a new normal might actually make life better.

“Particularly in the Western industrialized countries we’ve gotten used to levels of consumption that are not only environmentally unsustainable, they also don’t make us happy. They’ve in fact hollowed out our lives. We’ve given up things that actually do give us satisfaction and pleasure so that we can work more and more hours to get more and more money with which to buy more and more stuff- more flatscreen tvs, bigger SUVs, bigger houses and it’s not making us happier. Well, guess what, it’s possible to downsize, it’s possible to use less, become more self sufficient, grow more of your own food, have chickens in your backyard and be a happier person.”

This is not all theoretical. In the backyard of the home Heinberg shares with his wife, Janet Barocco, the couple grow most of their food during the summer months (i.e. 25 fruit & nut trees, veggies, potatoes.. they’re just lack grains), raise chickens for eggs, capture rainwater, bake with solar cookers and a solar food drier and secure energy with photovoltaic and solar hot water panels.

Their backyard reflects Heinberg’s vision for our “new normal” and it’s full of experiments, like the slightly less than 120-square-foot cottage that was inspired by the Small Home Movement. It was built with the help of some of Heinberg’s college students (in one of the nation’s first sustainability classes) using recycled and natural materials (like lime plaster).

Heinberg admits it’s not a real tiny house experiment since they don’t actually live in it- his wife uses it as a massage studio, he meditates there and sometimes it’s used as a guest house (though that’s hush hush due to permitting issues). But their tiny cottage points to the bigger point behind why a transition to a less resource intensive future could equal greater happiness.

“Simplify. Pay less attention to all of the stuff in your life and pay more attention to what’s really important. Maybe for you it’s gardening, maybe for you it’s painting or music. You know we all have stuff that gives us real pleasure and most of us find we have less and less time for that because we have to devote so much time to shopping, paying bills and driving from here to there and so on. Well, how about if we cut out some of that stuff and spend more time doing what really feeds us emotionally and spiritually and in some cases even nutritionally.”

Original story here: http://faircompanies.com/videos/view/richard-heinberg-why-end-growth-means-mo…

Food Safety

Cottage Food Bill on Colorado Governor’s Desk

By Dan Flynn

Like something baked in a home kitchen, Colorado’s cottage foods bill has ended up far more puffed up than when it started.The cottage foods bill now awaiting Gov. John Hickenlooper’s signature gathered some amendments as it went through the legislative process…



USDA’s Merrigan: No One Gets a Pass on Food Safety

By Helena Bottemiller

Deputy Agriculture Secretary Kathleen Merrigan touched on the importance of food safety in the growing regional and local food movement during the U.S. Department of Agriculture Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food event at the White House on Monday. “No…



Listeria Victims Call for Open Meetings on Cantaloupe Safety

By News Desk

On March 1, Joan Murphy of the Produce News wrote that produce trade organizations will be meeting to draft additional guidance to ensure the safe production of netted melons (i.e. cantaloupe).  The move is in response to the 2011 Listeria…





Sodas Contain Animal Carcinogen, Study Finds

By Gretchen Goetz

Today’s leading cola beverages contain high levels of a substance linked to cancer in animals, according to new research. An independent study commissioned by the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) uncovered  4-methylimidazole, or 4-MI, in Coke, Diet Coke,…



Food Recalls

Imported Candies With Too Much Lead

Three candies are being recalled after tests conducted by the California Department of Public Health found they exceed California standards for lead.The recalled candies are:- Chef’s Pride Rewadi Candy imported from Pakistan and packaged in a 7 oz. semi-round, clear plastic container with a red twist-off lid. The front label is light brown with a green border. The oval-shaped candy…



Allergen Alert: Egg in Streusel Pie Topping

By News Desk

Price Chopper Supermarkets is recalling its Price Chopper Bakery five- and eight-inch apple, blueberry, cherry and peach streusel pies because the streusel topping contains eggs, an allergen not listed on the ingredient label.The product is safe to eat for those…


Allergen Alert: Cookies With Milk

Price Chopper Supermarkets is recalling its Price Chopper Bakery five- and eight-inch apple, blueberry, cherry and peach streusel pies because the streusel topping contains eggs, an allergen not listed on the ingredient label.The product is safe to eat for those not allergic to eggs.Price Chopper customers who purchased these pies are being notified via the company’s Smart Reply notification program,…


Tyson Foodservice Pizza Topping Recalled

Tyson Prepared Foods of South Hutchinson, KS is recalling approximately 12,060 pounds of pizza topping because of the packaging identifies an ingredient as beef, but it actually is pork. Additionally, the pork contains soy, a potential allergen, which is not listed on the label.The discrepancies were reported by a product purchaser. There have been no reports of adverse reactions.This Class…


FDA warns of poisoned cosmetics

Women in at least seven states may have been unwittingly slathering poison on their faces by using mercury-tainted cosmetics, the Food and Drug Administration warned today. The products, usually used for lightening skin, are sold as soaps, skin creams, and lotions. Full story

Superbug infections spilling out into the community

CHICAGO — Many patients infected by the deadly superbug Clostridium difficile, long thought to be contracted mainly during hospital stays, are already exposed when they are admitted to the hospital, U.S. infectious disease experts said on Tuesday.


Diesel exhaust in mines linked to lung cancer

WASHINGTON — There’s new evidence that exposure to exhaust from diesel engines increases the risk of lung cancer.



‘Spice’ drug tied to kidney failure cases in Wyoming

Three young people have been hospitalized with kidney failure and a dozen others sickened in Casper, Wyoming, in an outbreak linked to a batch of the designer drug Spice, authorities said on Friday.



Do Coconut Oil and Coconut Water Provide Health Benefits?

There are lots of claims about two components of coconuts. Here’s what we know


Holistic Health

Vitamin B12 Supplements – What Type And How Much To Take?

Vitamin B12 supplements are really important for vegans, for anyone with digestive issues and for older adults. Although I would love nothing better than to tell you that all the nutrients you need are easily available from fresh, whole plant foods, B12 is unfortunately one nutrient that vegans should be getting from supplements.

And check out http://www.healthyeatingstartshere.com for the free ‘7 Secrets For Shaping Up Your Healthy Eating Habits’.

Dr. Oz answers: “What supplements do you take?”

Uploaded by on Jun 1, 2009

Here’s my first video answer to user-submitted questions on Facebook, Twitter, and mySpace. The question was: “what supplements do YOU take?” Thanks to Sony for sending over a Webbie HD Camera, which I’ve been using to film these in my office. MORE TO COME SOON! Submit new questions at facebook.com/droz, twitter.com/droz, myspace.com/droz.

DHA For a Healthy Heart

An omega-3 fatty acid found in fish oil, DHA may help fight heart disease…
See More About:  omega fatty acids  herbs and supplements


DMAE For Younger Skin?

A natural compound sometimes used in skin care, DMAE may help fight fine lines and smooth your skin…
See More About:  skin remedies  herbs and supplements


Fighting Depression With Fish Oil

The omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil may help boost your mood and ward off depression…
See More About:  remedies for depression  omega fatty acids


Natural Cough Relief

Look to natural remedies to help control your cough this cold and flu season…
See More About:  cold and flu remedies  herbs and supplements


Global Disaster Watch – Tuesday , March 7th, 2012


Magnitude 5.1 earthquake, Luzon, Philippines

UTC Date / Time
Mar 05 23:06 PM

10 km

GEO: Longitude

GEO: Latitude


Magnitude 4.5 earthquake, SOUTHWESTERN SIBERIA, RUSSIA

UTC Date / Time
Mar 06 06:49 AM

50 km

GEO: Longitude

GEO: Latitude


Magnitude 4.6 earthquake, near the east coast of Honshu, Japan

UTC Date / Time
Mar 06 09:50 AM

46.1 km

GEO: Longitude

GEO: Latitude


Magnitude 4.9 earthquake, Off East Coast of Honshu, Japan

UTC Date / Time
Mar 06 11:17 AM

10 km

GEO: Longitude

GEO: Latitude


Magnitude 4.7 earthquake, off the east coast of Honshu, Japan

UTC Date / Time
Mar 06 14:08 PM

30.8 km

GEO: Longitude

GEO: Latitude


Magnitude 4.9 earthquake, Southern Sumatra, Indonesia

UTC Date / Time
Mar 06 11:36 AM

85 km

GEO: Longitude

GEO: Latitude


Magnitude 4.6 earthquake, Banda Sea

UTC Date / Time
Mar 06 15:48 PM

10 km

GEO: Longitude

GEO: Latitude


Magnitude 4.8 earthquake, Ascension Island Region

UTC Date / Time
Mar 06 16:05 PM

10 km

GEO: Longitude

GEO: Latitude


Magnitude 4.9 earthquake, Kuril Islands

UTC Date / Time
Mar 06 22:33 PM

39.1 km

GEO: Longitude

GEO: Latitude


Magnitude 4.8 earthquake, KYRGYZSTAN

UTC Date / Time
Mar 07 03:03 AM

1 km

GEO: Longitude

GEO: Latitude


Magnitude 4.7 earthquake, Panama

UTC Date / Time
Mar 07 04:39 AM

48.4 km

GEO: Longitude

GEO: Latitude


Magnitude 5.3 earthquake, Ryukyu Islands, Japan

UTC Date / Time
Mar 07 06:18 AM

61 km

GEO: Longitude

GEO: Latitude


Magnitude 5 earthquake, KURIL ISLANDS

UTC Date / Time
Mar 06 22:33 PM

60 km

GEO: Longitude

GEO: Latitude


Magnitude 4.5 earthquake, CENTRAL IRAN

UTC Date / Time
Mar 07 06:57 AM

10 km

GEO: Longitude

GEO: Latitude



Magnitude 4.8 earthquake, Xizang

UTC Date / Time
Mar 07 07:23 AM

10 km

GEO: Longitude

GEO: Latitude


Tremor near Mullaperiyar Dam


Volcanic  Activity

Owner : “It’s like a funeral” as Lava claims last home in Hawaii community.



 Spain wilts in driest winter for 70 years



Snow, cold add to tornado survivors’ misery


Solar Activity

Sun unleashes another dramatic solar flare

Geomagnetic storms expected to sweep past our planet, sparking auroras


Lights in the Sky

Mystery fireball lights up sky in Victoria and Tasmania

Solar System


Asteroid 2012 DA14 on the mainstream

Uploaded by Envylife904 on Mar 6, 2012

As of today (3/6/12) asteroid 2012 DA14 impact probability look’s like this:

Impact Probability: 2.1e-04

0.021000000% chance of Earth impact
1 in 4,760 chance
99.97900000% chance the asteroid will miss the Earth

JPL Small-Body Database Browser

Impact Probability

Huge asteroid hurtling towards Earth will fly past our planet so close it will go UNDER many man-made satellites

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2110396/Asteroid-2012-DA14-NOT…

NBC News – Recommends To Get Your Affairs In Order – March 6, 2012


What’s causing the mysterious sounds coming from the sky that are so loud they set off car alarms?

By Ted Thornhill


Avalanche blankets Afghan village, kills at least 37




Politics and  Legislation

Who can shut down cell phone service? FCC seeks public comment


When does the enemy of our enemy stay our enemy and not our friend?


US government ultimately paid bail for Egypt NGOs


US Congress passes authoritarian anti-protest law


Illinois judge: law barring recording police is unconstitutional


Has the Time Come to Start Taxing Online Game Currency?



Dept. of Energy signs agreements to develop small nuclear generators


World Bank demands further pro-market measures in China


Perruchot report exposes French unions’ ties to the ruling class


Spain to extradite Mubarak associate to Egypt over gas deal with Israel

Yossi Maiman’s partner in the natural gas deal between Egypt and Israel is accused of making illegal profits from gas sales to Israel.


Matt Taibbi: Bank of America is a “raging hurricane of theft and fraud”


In Person: Former Reagan aide Stockman fears another collapse

David Stockman, former wunderkind of the Reagan revolution, is now an advocate for higher taxes, a critic of the work that made him rich and a scared investor who doesn’t own a single stock for fear of another financial crisis.


Asia stocks down after Obama’s tough talk on Iran

Asian stock markets fell Monday as tough talk by President Barack Obama over Iran’s nuclear program and uncertainty over Greece’s ability to clear the next hurdle in its debt reduction plan unnerved investors.


Glencore benefits from price rise for commodities

Commodities giant Glencore International PLC says it full-year profit rose 7 percent in 2011 to reach $4.06 billion.



Deepwater Oil Drilling Picks Up Again as BP Disaster Fades


6,800 tons of radiation-tainted rice straw left lying in 8 prefectures


From broken temp sensors to leaky pipes, Fukushima nuke plant plagued with problems


Wars  and  Rumors  of War

US to Attempt Overthrow of Putin Government


Britain considers air strikes against Somali insurgents


The U.S. Strategy to Control Middle Eastern Oil: “One of the Greatest Material Prizes in World History”


Senior U.S. senator calls for arming Syria rebels


Secret State Agencies: ‘No Hard Evidence’ Iran Building Nukes, March to War Continues


Israel to sell $1.6 billion in arms to Iran’s neighbor Azerbaijan


Israel delivers ultimatum to Barack Obama on Iran’s nuclear plans

At Monday’s meeting between Benjamin Netanyahu and Barack Obama the Israeli prime minister will deliver a stark warning, reports Adrian Blomfield in Jerusalem


British Propagandist in Syria: The Good Guys?


Netanyahu praises Obama’s AIPAC speech


U.S. Backers of Israel Pressure Obama Over Policy on Iran


CIA ex-chief lauds Stuxnet virus use against Iran


New poll shows Israelis oppose military strike on Iran


US prepares to refuel Israeli planes striking Iran: Report



Megaupload takedown a “death sentence without trial,” says Kim Dotcom


Copyright kings are judge, jury and executioner on YouTube


German intelligence agencies expand monitoring of Internet


Angry Birds, Meet Jailbirds: New App Helps You Snitch on Your Friends


CIA ex-chief lauds Stuxnet virus use against Iran

Global Disaster Watch – March 5th, 2012


Magnitude 5.1 earthquake, Off Coast Of Central America

UTC Date / Time  Mar 04 09:44AM

Depth  60 km  GEO: Longitude  -84.470

GEO  Latitude  2.630

Source  EMSC

Magnitude 5.5 earthquake, Southeast of Loyalty Islands

UTC Date / Time   Mar 04 12:49 PM

Depth 10 kmGEO: Longitude169.760GEO: Latitude-21.510


Magnitude 4.5 earthquake , Luzon,Philippines

UTC Date / Time  Mar 04 14:26 PM

Depth 152.5 km    GEO: Longitude120.625   GEO: Latitude14.254


Magnitude 5.1 earthquake, Southern Sumatra, Indonesia

UTC Date / Time   Mar 04 23:17 PM

Depth 10 km   GEO: Longitude 102.490 GEO: Latitude -4.500


Magnitude 4.5 earthquake, Southwestern, Siberia, Russia

UTC Date / Time   Mar 04 23:33 PM

Depth 14.9 km GEO: Longitude 95.983 GEO: Latitude 51.542


Magnitude 4.5 earthquake,Northern Algeria

UTC Date / Time   Mar 05 02:45 AM

Depth  10 km GEO: Longitude  0.690 GEO: Latitude 36.520

EMSCKuril Islands,

Magnitude 4.8 earthquake, Kuril Islands

UTC Date / Time Mar 05 03:33 AM

Depth123 km GEO: Longitude153.450 GEO:Latitude  46.250


Magnitude 4.8 earthquake, Southeast of Loyalty

Date / Time  Mar 05 05:14 AM

Depth 287 km GEO: Longitude 169.720

GEO: Latitude –22.130


Solar Activity

BIG SUNSPOT: A sunspot almost four times as wide as Earth itself is rotating onto the solar disk. NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory recorded its entrance on March 2nd and 3rd; click to view a 24-hour animation:

The sunspot has a ‘beta-gamma’ magnetic field that harbors energy for strong M-class solar flares. Indeed, it has already unleashed an M3-class eruption on March 2nd that created mild waves of ionization in the atmosphere over Europe.

Earth-effects could become stronger as the sunspot turns toward our planet in the days ahead. NOAA forecasters estimate a 55% chance of additional M-class flares and a 5% chance of an X-flare during the next 24 hours. Solar flare alerts: text,phone.

more images: from Dennis Put of Brielle, The Netherlands; from Pavol Rapavy of Observatory Rimavska Sobota, Slovakia; from Maximilian Teodorescu of Bucharest, Romania; from Jim Werle of Henderson, Nevada;


Solar System

The Lunar Cataclysm



Portugal prays for rain as drought adds to crisis



Tornadoes cut violent path across U.S. leaving trail of destruction and 37 dead


Whole town ‘completely gone’ after Indiana tornado


Storms Demolish Small Towns in Indiana, Kentucky; 38 Dead


Volcanic Activity

The Tungurahua volcano increased its activity level at 18:30 on Saturday. According to the technicians of the Observatory of the Geophysical Institute, this is characterized by the explosive ejection of incandescent rocks with additional steam and ash. Moreover, the intensity of the bellows rose relative to those detected at 14:20 on the start of this new eruptive process.  Jorge Bustillos, a volcanologist, said the expulsion of the material reaches 500 meters above the crater and the vapor cloud 800. “The activity is Strombolian type, this is identified by the output of lava, steam and ash.”  Lookouts of the colossus said there was a fall of volcanic dust cam in communities Puela, Chonglontus and El Manzano, in Chimborazo. The cloudy nights have impeded direct observation of the giant crater.  Serafin Medina, a resident of Palictahua said that since the late bellows have been emitted from the volcano, activity at the volcano has increased. “We listen to what they say the technicians of the Geophysical Institute.” –El Comerico translated

Lights in the Sky

Green Object Reported in the Sky Over Newfoundland


Green Fireball Seen All Over Southeastern Canada


Fireball seen from southern Norway and Sweden


Meteor Lights up the Sky Across England


Thousands Witness Spectacular Fireball Streak Over UK (VIDEO)



Tokyo Bay Radioactive Cesium Deposits Now Over 10 Inches Deep



Asteroid 2012 DA14 heads for Earth next year


3MIN News Mar4: Earthquake Watch, M-FLARE WHILE UPLOADING!

The Intel Hub
By Tony Muga
February 27, 2012

According to several stunning editorials by authors Lucas W. Hixon and Joy Thompson on the website Enformable.com, evidence obtained through an FOIA request reveals a ‘cover-up’ by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission in an effort to conceal the severity of the meltdowns in Fukushima, Japan.

The FOIA request was initiated by the Friends of the Earth (FOE), the Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR), and the Nuclear Information and Resource Center (NIRS) in March of 2011. Physicians for Social Responsibility explains the purpose of the request on YubaNet.com:

“On March 16, 2011, NRC Commissioner Gregory B Jaczko told Congress that he was recommending the 50-mile evacuation radius.

The scope of the recommended evacuation is highly unusual and suggestive of extraordinarily high radiation levels in excess of those reported to the public in Japan and the U.S., …In the U.S., nuclear reactor licensees and local governments are only asked to provide for evacuation out to 10 miles. As concerns grow about food and water contamination in Japan, the three groups…are seeking to determine the answer to this key question: What made Jaczko exceed the limits of his own agency’s regulations by five times?”

Interestingly enough, and surely by coincidence, the Qur’an burnings in Afghanistan have taken place just as the analysis of these documents, and the documents themselves are being made public.

It should be no surprise that the corporate controlled mainstream media is ignoring this blockbuster revelation instead of exposing it and demanding an investigation.

In a January 18th and February 19th article analysis of NRC emails and transcripts of phone conversations, dated just days after the accident, reveals the nature of the cover-up:

1. Containment: “By Sunday March 13th, Elliot Brenner, sent out an e-mail to upper NRC counterparts clearly narrating the sequence of events. ‘While we know more than what these (press releases) say, we’re sticking to this story for now.’ writes Breener, during the weekend he labled [labeled] ‘very hectic’.”

In regards to not fully utilizing twitter: “The NRC was using their blog and the updates provided by the American Nuclear Society as the main modes of communication with the public.

2. Selective distribution of information: “David McIntyre also works in the NRC on public affairs, and spent much of his time creating carefully crafted e-mails that constantly downplayed the disaster, and any relationship that might be made to the safety status of US nuclear stations.

On March 14th, McIntyre received an email [from] Molly McCrea, a reporter for CBS inquired about the status of a law that Senator Markey had authored that would distribute KI (potassium iodide) to those living within a certain distance from a nuclear power plant, and whether or not it was being followed. She asked whether or not the pills had been distributed, and why the NRC had been reported to be discouraging the distribution.

McIntyre replied vaguely alluding to the fact that the NRC was not solely responsible, but that it was a ‘US Government decision, not just the NRC but HHS [Health and Human services] and others.’ It is true that the NRC has worked hard against the burden of purchasing, storing, and maintaining a fresh supply of KI for those populations closest to nuclear reactors.

In 2009, the NRC actually canceled it’s policy on KI distribution, stating that it was unnecessary, as it did not protect against all radionuclides that could be potentially released, would cause undue stress on the community, and would delay critical response time by adding more duties to local, state and federal staff.”

3. Deception: “It appears that McIntyre used his own personal discretion on which information to release to specific reporters or news services. On March 14th, he received an e-mail from Molly McCrea again, this time asking if the United States was possibly sending KI to Japan, or had sent KI to Japan to help out, if he could confirm, and if not who should she contact.

McIntyre replied ‘We have not been asked to provide KI’. He further explained, ‘We understand the Japanese authorities have included KI as part of their protective action guidelines, which would indicate they have some stockpiles.’

The reply email was sent on Tuesday March 15th, 2011 at 4:07:00 PM. At 4:10:00 PM, only 3 minutes later, McIntyre rushed a quick note to Matthew Wald, a long-time reporter for the New York Times who has written on nuclear energy for years, with the subject line-’KI Info’ stating, ‘Matt-I’m told we distributed approximately 11 million pills. Dave.’”

4. Hiding knowledge of a radioactive plume bound for the West Coast, USA: Referring to a series of e-mails from David Lew as ‘documents 3,4 and 5′ : Thompson writes:

“Yet another caution to limit information given to the public and a heads-up to ‘Expect the public/media focus to turn toward domestic in the next day or so.’ IOW, by the afternoon of March 12 the NRC was in full ass-covering mode for the U.S. nuclear industry.”

Excellent quotes from these e-mails are provided, quotes that show officials were aware of the radioactive plume headed for North America. Why was there no emergency broadcast warning?

Interaction with DHS and federal agencies, including plume plot, possible exposure models, and monitoring of west coast.”

This information can only lead to one conclusion, stated perfectly by Thompson: “FEMA standing down, don’t expect the plume to hit the west coast that weekend. NRC thinks unit 2 ‘shut down safely.’ [Heh. The direct cite above indicates clearly federal agencies – FEMA, DHS, DOE, EPA – were very much aware that contamination from Fukushima would travel as a plume and that there would be fallout when it reached the U.S. mainland…”

In ‘document 6‘, an ‘Internal email’ from one William Ostendorff, and in reference to a 3:30PM conference call, there is another admission of knowledge of the plume, “4. Keep interacting with DHS on potential plume plots and modeling capability, etc…”.

5. Cover -up: Evidence of an effort to prepare for the inevitable pesky public inquiry can also be found in the internal email of Mr. Ostendorff:“Further develop Q&A as the attention will start to turn to US plants and our level of preparedness/protection from seismic and floods.”

But as Hixon points out, the directives for information control were given the day of the accident indicated in a bulletin from the ‘Operations Center’ dated March 11th at 3:04 PM:

“This is the ‘NOT A DRILL’ notice pictured above the squiggle. It sets the tone for information control with instructions specific to dealing with the international press.

In the first paragraph it identifies where employees may direct the press in order to access the ‘official’ press releases from NRC, and urges any NRC employees who ARE contacted by the media to inform the NRC Office of Public Affairs immediately.”

6. At the highest levels: There is plenty of evidence the White House knew everything and played a ‘lead’ part. In the Osendorff email he clearly states that “NRC posture to hold White House lead for U.S. response, NRC to be support only so as not to focus media attention on NRC-”.

Again, in a March 12th, 12:52 PM email from David Lew, we see White House involvement: “NRC remains in the monitoring mode. Chairman attended a meeting with White House. Marty Virgilio participated by VTC.” (video teleconferencing)

Later that afternoon another email from Mr. Lew states that there is a “Deputies Meeting at the White House with significant focus on the nuclear event.”

There is little doubt now that the radioactive plume had an effect on American citizens but keep in mind that people were not falling over dead in the street in numbers and the ‘plume’ is an invisible one so unless one had warning, there was virtually no way of detecting its presence.

According to a GlobalResearch.ca article based on research printed in the Journal of Health Services , Internist and Toxicologist Janette Sherman, MD insists we have paid a heavy toll from the fallout: 

“Based on our continuing research, the actual death count here (USA) may be as high as 18,000, with influenza and pneumonia, which were up five-fold in the period in question as a cause of death. Deaths are seen across all ages, but we continue to find that infants are hardest hit because their tissues are rapidly multiplying, they have undeveloped immune systems, and the doses of radioisotopes are proportionally greater than for adults.”

It seems that the fundamental problem with what Americans are experiencing is not just radioactive fallout but Fascism, the merging of the corporate and the state.

In a fascist state, there is little or no responsible action from the corporations for there is little or no promotion of accountability from the state. The corporations, for all intents and purposes, control the state.

And when the time has come that corporate profits outweigh human safety, has not also the time come, as Americans, to ask ourselves: do we, as a society, even value human life as we once did and if we do what IS the worth of a life?

Perhaps for once, it should NOT be determined in terms of a dollar amount.

Additional Reading: There are over a 1,000 pages of FOIA documents that are being analyzed post haste in an effort to reveal the truth about the Fukushima accident and what authorities did or did not do following the meltdowns to protect U.S. citizens.

The 186 page NRC transcript of conference calls: Lot’s of redacting but on page 153 (lines 24 and 25) and page 154 (lines 1-8) of the document Chairman Jaczco is told by Jack Grob that:

“They asked for monitoring, both land-based and air-based monitoring. The DOE Radiological Assistance Program teams are on the ground in Japan, and they’ll be providing that monitoring. We have already established a relationship with the Department of Energy, and will get that information in real time, and that will be a huge benefit.”

Talking Points Memo: NRC talking points as of March 17th, 2011 0600 EDT. Shows radiation plume was headed for the US.

395 pages of NRC Emails and more reveal the inner workings of the cover-up. Includes the emails quoted above.

Report on ‘An Unexpected Mortality Increase In The United States Follows Arrival Of The Radioactive Plume From Fukushima: Is T