Tag Archive: survival


Published on Oct 14, 2012 by

A small but affordable rain catchment system that anyone can make, This video is to motivate you to come up with a water plan even if its very small and not very complicated. Figure your plan out now. DO NOT PUT IT OFF.

Crossroads News : Changes In The World Around Us And Our Place In It

Sustainability  & Survival  :   Supplies  & Food Storage

Grandpappy’s Website



Cheryl Nelson

Earth Changes College

This entire website is a gem of survival tips on a budget.  For instance, http://www.grandpappy.info/rrice.htm is just a wealth of information.  Keep your eye on the Discussion forum, where the main link is already posted.  Anyone who wants to bring a sub-link into its own discussion thread for more discussion is welcome to do so.

Did you know rice is one of the cheapest of foods and can last for 20 years if stored properly?  Did you know a one-year supply for one person is 60-70 pounds and currently at Wal-Mart, you can get 20-lb. bags for around $12-$13?  That means one person can have a one-year supply of rice for about $36-$40.  And combined with affordable beans, it makes a complete protein.  That is a great, economical start to building your food storage program.

Did you know you can grind rice and make rice flour, good for thickening sauces?

Did you know you can substitute it for bread crumbs in meatloaf?  Meatballs?  Poultry stuffing recipes?

Makes a good burrito.  Stewed tomatoes and rice = Spanish rice.  Curry + other spices = Indian rice.  Rice pilaf.  You can even make your own Rice-a-Roni.

Oh, and then the dolmas.  Mmmmmmmmm.  Cabbage leaves + rice + tomato sauce + spices (and meat or boullion flavoring).

An inexpensive rice casserole uses rice and boullion cubes, butter and onion powder.

And rice puddings… you gotta check out this page.

Rice does not have to be boring and it doesn’t have to be expensive to flavor, either.  And it is filling and satisfying.

For more information on meatless recipes, and complementary combining of foods, get a copy of Diet for a Small Planet by Frances Moore Lappe for more information.  Used copies are available on Amazon.com, starting around $3.30 ($3.99 S&H).

My personal favorite rice recipe is rice salad.  I mix garden salad fixin’s with rice, and dress with my favorite dressing (currently Braswell’s Creamy Vidalia).  Heaven!  Braswell’s goes well on Ramen noodles too, another cheap source of carbs and calories.


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.



(Major General Albert N. Stubblebine III ;U.S. Army, Retired)


“The new White House Executive Order of March 16, 2012, the so-called ‘National Defense Resources Preparedness Order’ is a clear blueprint for total government control over the civilian economy, under the guise of ‘national defense.’ This latest outrage against the Constitution reminds me of the totalitarian world of Orwell’s 1984, where a few Ministries controlled everything. Below is our Counsel Ralph Fucetola JD’s analysis of this Executive Order.”

Push Back here: http://tinyurl.com/PushBackFree

From Counsel Ralph:  The White House has set in motion the regulatory basis for an American version of Lenin’s “War Communism” whereby the entire civilian economy is militarized and marshaled as the Leader directs through five specific Federal Departments. Notice which Department now has control over which aspects of your lives.
This section quoted below provides for the take over of the means of production. It says that the Five Department heads can override private contracts and commandeer all the resources of all the people. This Executive Order, if allowed to stand, sets the legal basis for total government control over, as it says below, “food… energy… health… civil transportation… water… and all other materials, services and facilities…”

Read the entire Order here: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2012/03/16/executive-order-national-defense-resources-preparedness

Sec. 201Priorities and Allocations Authorities.  (a)  The authority of the President conferred by section 101 of the Act, 50 U.S.C. App. 2071, to require acceptance and priority performance of contracts or orders (other than contracts of employment) to promote the national defense over performance of any other contracts or orders, and to allocate materials, services, and facilities as deemed necessary or appropriate to promote the national defense, is delegated to the following agency heads:

(1)  the Secretary of Agriculture with respect to food resources, food resource facilities, livestock resources, veterinary resources, plant health resources, and the domestic distribution of farm equipment and commercial fertilizer;

(2)  the Secretary of Energy with respect to all forms of energy;

(3)  the Secretary of Health and Human Services with respect to health resources;

(4)  the Secretary of Transportation with respect to all forms of civil transportation;

(5)  the Secretary of Defense with respect to water resources; and

(6)  the Secretary of Commerce with respect to all other materials, services, and facilities, including construction materials.


Here is a video I stumbled across that discusses the executive order in question

Alert! Obama Declares/Updates MARTIAL LAW Implementation – Executive Order Explained

An  excerpt  from  March 20, 2012

The Executive Order Controversy

By Joe Herring


The Executive order issued by Obama on 3/16 is largely a restatement of the 1994 Clinton order with a few functional changes.  It moves the authority for implementing the provisions of the DPA from the director of FEMA to the Department of Homeland Security, which did not exist at the time of Clinton’s presidency.  There have been pedestrian additions of renewable energy sources, such as solar and wind, to the purview of the secretary of energy (as well as a curiously specific redefinition of bottled water as a “food resource” rather than a water resource), but nothing is particularly out of step with the order Obama’s EO supersedes.

So what is the problem?  Well, considering that the authority of the DPA has never been meaningfully exercised, and that the pre-emption of authority claimed by the Clinton-era EO 12919 has been similarly dormant, why would the Obama administration choose this particular time to update an obscure and unused authority?  It is this question many believe must be asked and answered, and sooner rather than later.

In an attempt to provide that answer, allow me to don an appropriately stylish tinfoil hat before I present a plausible scenario.

1) In early March 2012, Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta told the Senate Armed Services Committee that it is the position of this administration that international organizations such as NATO or the United Nations have at least as much, if not more authority to deploy U.S. troops, with or without congressional notice or permission.

2) A week later, the NAACP petitioned the U.N. Human Rights Council to involve themselves in our election process — specifically our November presidential election, in order to monitor the vote for instances of voter suppression.  It is the fantasy of the NAACP that laws requiring presentation of a photo ID to cast a ballot are in actuality thinly veiled efforts to keep the poor, elderly, and non-white populations from voting, presumably for Obama.

3) Attorney General Eric Holder has spent his tenure creating a hair-trigger system of race-conscious prosecutions, most notably in reference to cases involving voter fraud.  His previous employee, J. Christian Adams, has built a second career from simply exposing the injustice of Holder’s Department of Justice.

4) Most recently, Holder struck another blow against the concept of verifiable voting by forestalling Texas’s proposed Voter ID law, saying it “goes against the arc of history.”  Aside from the attorney general basing his decisions on perceived “historical arcs” rather than clear and established law, the end result is the same: the creation of an air of uncertainty surrounding the upcoming election.

Now (as I adjust my tinfoil hat to a jauntier angle), let me tie these points together.

By employing repetitive reporting of “uncertainty about the reliability of the presidential election tally” by the major media, compounded by expressions of the same uncertainty by administration officials, the left could install that narrative amongst the segments of the population that  pay little or no attention to the day-to-day practice of politics.

Could the NAACP then, with support from the Department of Justice and the administration, make the case to the U.N. that the election was in fact tainted, and subsequently persuade the member nations of the U.N. to declare the election invalid?  It is possible, and such a declaration is certain to bring chaos to the streets of every major city in our country, as well as a great deal of smaller ones.  To restore order, the president might need to deploy troops.  Should the Congress resist the move, the administration might simply appeal to the U.N., which could request/order the deployment of troops by a willing and complicit Secretary Panetta.

And of course, President Obama would simply continue in office, for the sake of stability, until this could all be sorted out.

Perhaps it now makes sense for the administration to have updated an unused executive order, preparing their legal argument and framework for the imposition of peacetime martial law.  Liberty, once lost, is seldom regained.

Yes, it is far-fetched, but it is also distressingly possible.  The sad fact in America today is that we have a president so disdainful of our foundational law and freedoms as to make the far-fetched seem queasily reasonable.

The timing of this executive order is jarring, even if the specific changes to the order are not.  The power it conveys is staggering and cannot be safely entrusted to a single branch of government, much less to a single man.  The Congress needs to reassert control over the exercise and implementation of the Defense Production Act before it can be utilized by a power-hungry cabal of leftists eager to fundamentally transform America.  There is a door no one has locked, and our home is not secure.  Close the door, lock it, and throw away that key.

The author writes from Omaha, NE and welcomes visitors to his website at http://www.readmorejoe.com.

Uploaded by on Aug 6, 2009

Are you prepared for an emergency, such as a disruption in utilities or quarantine? How would you cook and wash yourself, what would you drink?

Watch as we evaluate our emergency preparedness, as we live in our house for five days without electricity and water from our taps.

Uploaded by on Apr 2, 2010

Most of the information out there about survivalism and preparedness is male centred. What do woman think about bug out bags, self-defense and preparedness? Watch this interview to see one woman’s perspective on survivalism and relationships.


GEOFON Southeast Of Ryukyu Islands Mar 16 03:39 AM 5.3 10.0 MAP

EMSC Vanuatu Mar 16 03:32 AM 5.0 63.0 MAP

USGS Vanuatu Mar 16 03:32 AM 4.9 10.0 MAP

USGS Kuril Islands Mar 16 00:38 AM 5.4 28.4 MAP

GEOFON Kuril Islands Mar 16 00:38 AM 5.8 10.0 MAP

EMSC Kuril Islands Mar 16 00:38 AM 5.5 2.0 MAP

Magnitude 4.9 earthquake, ROTA REGION, N. MARIANA ISLANDS

UTC Date / Time Mar 15 21:37 PM

Depth 105 km GEO: Longitude 145.300 GEO: Latitude 14.080


Two Powerful Aftershocks Highlight Ongoing Reassessment of Japan Quake Risks

On Wednesday, a 6.8 magnitude quake hit Japan’s northern Hokkaido Island. It was followed hours later by a 6.1 magnitude tremor in the Chiba Prefecture, which is directly south of Tokyo and some 600 miles from the location of the earlier quake. Both are described as aftershocks from the March 11, 2011 Tohoku quake.


Volcanic Activity

Cleveland Volcano Explodes For Third Time

Cleveland Volcano has exploded for the third time in just over a week. The latest eruption of the Aleutian volcano Tuesday afternoon was relatively small, according to a release from the Alaska Volcano Observatory.

Scientists at the Observatory weren’t able detect an ash cloud associated with this event or either of the other two. There’s no real-time monitoring equipment on Cleveland.

None of the recent eruptions have interrupted air travel in the region.

Cleveland’s last major eruption in 2001 sent ash clouds as high as 39,000 feet. The volcano is on uninhabited Island, about 160 miles west of Unalaska.


Lamongan volcano (East Java, Indonesia):

signs of unrest, alert raised to yellow due to increased seismic activity

A new volcano in Indonesia, Lamongan volcano in Eastern Java, is showing signs of unrest: weak steaming from its active crater and increasing earthquakes were reported by Indonesian scientists.


Mexico’s Popocatépetl volcano unleashes 9 low-level emissions

by The Extinction Protocol

March 15, 2012 – MEXICO – The National Center for Disaster Prevention (Cenapred) reported that in the last hours, the volcano Popocatepetl has expelled nine low-intensity exhalations accompanied by emissions of water vapor and gas, and sometimes small amounts of ash. The body of the Ministry of the Interior (Interior Ministry) reported that the monitoring parameters remain without important changes. He explained that at night, a glow was observed in the crater of the volcano and that for now; there has been a constant emission of steam and gas. He said the advisory code remains yellow in color phase 2 and the likelihood of prevailing moderate exhalations, some with ash emissions, and sporadic bursts of low to moderate probability of emission of incandescent fragments could be expected within walking distance of the crater. The Cenapred called for authorities to continue the safety radius of 12 kilometers around the volcano. Civil Protection has been urged to maintain preventive procedures in place, according to their operational plans and that people should keep advised to the latest news bulletins. –Cronica (translated)


Storms and Flooding

In the Indian Ocean

Tropical cyclone 17s (Lua) was located approximately 375 nm northwest of Port Hedland, Australia.


Severe Tropical Cyclone Lua to Hit Australia Coast tomorrow –

Lua has intensified to a powerful Category Three storm and is expected to lash the Pilbara coast with destructive winds in excess of 200km/h when it hits land tomorrow. Communities on the Pilbara and Kimberley coasts are on alert as the cyclone Lua, which currently has 185km/h gales at its centre, intensifies and moves towards land. Heavy rain and destructive winds are expected to hit the region and surrounding areas by late Friday or early Saturday. Lua was upgraded from a category 2 to a category 3 system early today. It is expected to cross the east Pilbara coast late Saturday morning or early afternoon. “Gales are currently being experienced in offshore Pilbara waters and are expected to develop in coastal areas between Whim Creek and Bidyadanga late Friday night. Very destructive winds with wind gusts in excess of 200km/h are likely to develop in coastal areas near the centre of the cyclone during Saturday…Tides are likely to rise significantly above the normal high tide mark with damaging waves and very dangerous flooding.”
Remote Pardoo and Eighty Mile Beach Caravan Park is in the path of the cyclone. There are fears the park will be damaged again, three years after it received a battering from Cyclone Laurence in 2009. “There’s all new trees, everything’s beautiful and green, and to see that destroyed again would be heartbreaking. We’ve prepared ourselves and we’ve got new buildings, which is the top rating you can get, but it’s all the work that’s gone into it to rebuild.” The iron-ore export port of Port Hedland is being evacuated and residents in the cyclone’s expected path have been urged to prepare their properties for dangerous weather and organise their emergency kits. Western Australia’s Fire and Emergency Services Authority has warned there may be significant flooding in the north Kimberley region and minor flooding in the east Kimberley area today. (map)



A tornado touched down in southern Michigan Thursday, and there were reports of significant property damage, with the tornado damaging or demolishing more than 100 homes, downing trees and power lines, sparking fires and flooding neighborhood roads. Local news station footage showed flattened homes but there were no immediate reports of injuries. There was a lot of damage reported just outside the village of Dexter. March and April typically produce the most tornados in the US but this season has already been especially active. Two massive weather systems beginning late last month have spawned a spate of tornados that have ripped through the South and Midwest, flattening towns and killing dozens of people.



More NSW residents told to evacuate as waters rise. The Murrumbidgee River is expected to flood yet another Riverina town over the weekend with about 1000 people preparing to flee the deluge.


Record Breaking Temperatures

U.S. RECORD-BREAKING WARM WEATHERadvances beginning of growing season

Recent ABNORMALLY WARM weather has resulted in a very early start to the growing season across the Great Lakes Region and much of the central and eastern USA. The prolonged warm spell is the result of a very persistent jet stream configuration across North America that generally prevented cold, arctic-origin air masses from moving out of their high-latitude source regions southward into the central and eastern USA. This left the area under the influence of relatively mild Pacific-origin air masses. The current jet stream pattern, with deep troughing across the western USA and ridging across the east has accentuated the pattern. The result is record-breaking warmth brought northward from the Gulf States on southerly winds.
Characterizing the current warm spell as HIGHLY UNUSUAL IS AN UNDERSTATEMENT, both due to the magnitude of the warmth and due to its length. Recent temperatures have been running in the range of 20 to 30°F or more above normal. The warm weather has caused an earlier peak time for cherry blossoms as Washington, D.C. hit a RECORD-BREAKING 82 degrees on a late winter’s day Thursday. (map depicting forecast conditions across North America early next week)



More RECORD-BREAKING WARMTH ahead for Denver. Colorado’s warm spell has a solid chance to leave its mark on the record book three times this week. The National Weather Service is predicting a high of 76 degrees today, which would eclipse the record high of 74 degrees for March.


Solar Activity

‘Deathstar’ like object spotted near sun

A NASA video of a dark, disc shaped object hovering near the sun has set off a wave of speculation online as amateur astronomers try to figure out what the object could be.

The video, taken from a NASA satellite and uploaded to Youtube by a man calling himself SunsFlare, shows a huge round object floating near the sun, with a large ‘twister tail’ extending from it.

The video shows the sun’s rays bursting out from the surface, but a large circular object remains black, with a dark ‘twister tail’ remaining connected to the sun.



Ice Age, Supervolcano Could Topple US Government


As more evidence mounts that the world is slipping faster into the next Ice Age, Washington insiders are scurrying to solidify their new power base for centralized government operations. Fears that the US…


White cliffs of Dover suffer large collapse

A large section of the white cliffs of Dover has collapsed into the English Channel between Langdon Cliffs and South Foreland Lighthouse.


Savanah Georgia region shaken by mystery ‘boom’ noise

“Earthquake “booms” have been reported for a long time, and they tend to occur more in the Northeastern US and along the East Coast. Of course, most “booms” that people hear or experience are actually some type of cultural noise, such as some type of explosion, a large vehicle going by, or sometimes a sonic boom, but there have been many reports of “booms” that cannot be explained by man-made sources. No one knows for sure, but scientists speculate that these “booms” are probably small shallow earthquakes that are too small to be recorded, but large enough to be felt by people nearby.



Rising Sea Levels Seen as Threat to Coastal U.S.

About 3.7 million Americans live within a few feet of high tide and risk being hit by more frequent coastal flooding in coming decades because of the sea level rise caused by global warming, according to new research.




Magnitude 4.8 earthquake, Volcano Islands, Japan Region

UTC Date / Time Mar 14 04:43 AM

Depth 10 km GEO: Longitude 142.820 GEO: Latitude 25.440


Magnitude 4.9 earthquake, Solomon Islands

UTC Date / Time Mar 14 05:08 AM

Depth 107.2 km GEO: Longitude 161.105 GEO:Latitude -10.272


Magnitude 4.6 earthquake, Reykjanes Ridge

UTC Date / Time Mar 14 06:51 AM

Depth 10 km GEO: Longitude -35.270 GEO: Latitude 53.980



Magnitude 4.7 earthquake, Minahassa Peninsula, Sulawesi

UTC Date / Time Mar 14 07:08 AM

Depth 10 km GEO: Longitude 122.640 GEO: Latitude 1.900



Magnitude 4.9 earthquake, Mindanao, Philippines

UTC Date / Time Mar 14 08:51 AM

Depth 139 km GEO: Longitude 126.390 GEO: Latitude 5.700


Magnitude 7.3 earthquake, Off East Coast of Honshu, Japan

UTC Date / Time Mar 14 09:08 AM

Depth 10 km GEO: Longitude 145.270 GEO: Latitude 40.850



Magnitude 5.9 earthquake, Off East Coast of Honshu, Japan

UTC Date / Time Mar 14 10:49 AM

Depth 10 km GEO: Longitude 144.810 GEO: Latitude 40.860


Magnitude 5.6 earthquake, Off East Coast of Honshu, Japan

UTC Date / Time Mar 14 11:40 AM

Depth 10 km GEO: Longitude 144.880 GEO: Latitude 40.940



Magnitude 5.9 earthquake, Near East Coast of Honshu, Japan

UTC Date / Time Mar 14 12:05 PM

Depth 10 km GEO: Longitude 141.320 GEO: Latitude 36.130


Magnitude 4.8 earthquake, Off East Coast of Honshu, Japan

UTC Date / Time Mar 14 13:43 PM

Depth 10 km GEO: Longitude 144.820 GEO: Latitude 40.940



Magnitude 4.6 earthquake, OFF EAST COAST OF HONSHU, JAPAN

UTC Date / Time Mar 14 14:04 PM

Depth 9 km GEO: Longitude 144.840 GEO: Latitude 40.960


Magnitude 4.6 earthquake, Off East Coast of Honshu, Japan

UTC Date / Time Mar 14 17:26 PM

Depth 10 km GEO: Longitude 145.120 GEO: Latitude 40.660



Mild quake rocks Delhi

An earthquake measuring 3.5 on the Richter scale was felt in western Uttar Pradesh and parts of Delhi and the NCR on Tuesday.

The earthquake took place at around 3.37 am. No serious damage has been reported.
An official from the Meteorological Department (IMD) said it was a low intensity earthquake with the epicentre at Baghpat in western Uttar Pradesh.

This is fifth tremor experienced in Delhi since the beginning of this year. On March 5, a 4.9 magnitude earthquake had shaken Delhi and its adjoining areas in the NCR. Its epicentre was Bahadurgarh on the Haryana-Delhi border.


Santorini: The ground is moving again in paradise

Do a Google image search for “Greece.” Before you find pictures of the Parthenon or Acropolis, you’ll see several beautiful photos of Santorini, the picturesque island in the Aegean Sea. The British Broadcasting Company named it the world’s best island in 2011. Santorini is a tourist magnet, famous for its breathtaking, cliff side views and sunsets. It’s also a volcanic island that has been relatively calm since its last eruption in 1950. Until now.



Magnitude 6.8 earthquake strikes Japanese coast, tsunami wave hits coast

small tsunami wave has hit Japan’s northeastern coastline, officials say, after a strong earthquake rocked the region a year on from the country’s worst post-war natural disaster.
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Today’s 20cm wave and 6.8 magnitude quake, which struck around 210km off the northern island of Hokkaido, prompted local authorities to issue an evacuation warning for coastal residents before it hit land.

Japan’s meteorological agency also confirmed that an earlier 10cm wave had hit land.

The waves hit two locations in Aomori prefecture, which was one of the areas in Japan’s northeast devastated by last year’s disaster.



‘Earthquake swarm’ shakes New Brunswick village

Residents in a small southwestern New Brunswick community may continue to feel minor earthquakes for several more days or even weeks, according to a Natural Resources Canada seismologist.

McAdam has been hit with five small earthquakes since Saturday in what is known as an “earthquake swarm.” The last one was felt at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday.



6.4 quake strikes Papua New Guinea: US seismologists


SYDNEY — A 6.4-magnitude earthquake struck Papua New Guinea Thursday, the US Geological Survey reported, but a tsunami warning was not issued and seismologists said “no major human impact is expected”.

The quake hit the New Britain region at 7:13 am (2113 GMT Wednesday) at a depth of 48 kilometres (30 miles), 204 kilometres southwest of the main city in the area Rabaul and 598 kilometres from national capital Port Moresby.




In the Indian Ocean –

Tropical cyclone 17s (Lua) was located approximately 385 nm north of Learmonth, Australia.



Resources companies in Western Australia’s north are bracing for Tropical Cyclone Lua, which is expected to intensify as it approaches the Pilbara coast.

Forecasters believe Lua could cause flooding in the resources-rich Kimberley region. The Bureau of Meteorology’s latest update at 0900 (WST) said a cyclone watch alert was current for coastal areas from Cape Leveque to Mardie. The cyclone is currently moving slowly in an easterly direction but is expected to intensify into a severe tropical cyclone late today. .It is then expected to accelerate to the southeast on Friday and early on Saturday towards the east Pilbara coast. BoM anticipates Lua will remain severe as it approaches the coast. On Saturday, destructive winds with gusts of more than 150 kilometres per hour are expected to develop in coastal areas near the centre of the cyclone. In the meantime, heavy rainfall is anticipated in coastal areas of the east Pilbara and west Kimberley.


Strange Weather Patterns


A HIGHLY UNUSUAL week-long heat wave is building over much of the U.S., and promises to bring THE WARMEST TEMPERATURES EVER SEEN SO EARLY IN THE YEAR

to a large portion of the Midwest. The exceptional heat will also be EXCEPTIONALLY LONG-LASTING: record-breaking temperatures 20 – 30 degrees F above normal are expected through next Wednesday for much of the Midwest and Northeast U.S. The weather system responsible is a large upper-level ridge of high pressure that is “stuck” in place – a phenomenon known as a “blocking pattern.” The jet stream is bending far to the south over the Western U.S., then bending far to the north over the Rockies and into Canada, and lies far to the north of the eastern U.S. Since the jet stream acts as the boundary between cold air to the north and warm air to the south, the current looping pattern is bringing colder than normal temperatures and snow to the mountains of the West, and summer-like warmth to the Eastern U.S. It is common for the jet stream to get stuck in a blocking pattern for a period of a week or more, but not to this extreme. If the current model forecasts prove correct, a high pressure ridge over the U.S. bringing HEAT THIS INTENSE AND LONG-LASTING IN MARCH WILL BE UNPRECEDENTED IN THE HISTORICAL RECORD, going back to 1872. High temperatures for Wednesday, March 14 over much of the Midwest were more typical of June than March.
The expected warm temperatures during the coming week will rival those recorded on March 8, 2000, when most of the Upper Midwest set all-time records for the warmest temperature ever measured so early in the year. That warm surge was caused by a ridge of high pressure that was not as strong as the one expected to build in during the coming week, and the March 8, 2000 ridge did not stick around long enough to generate more than two days of record-breaking high temperatures. A powerful low pressure system moved through Northern Wisconsin on March 8, 2000, dragging a cold front through the state that triggered a thunderstorm that spawned the earliest tornado ever recorded in Milwaukee County. New DAILY HIGH TEMPERATURE RECORDS WERE SET AT 208 LOCATIONS TUESDAY.
In Minneapolis, Minnesota yesterday, the high temperature reached 67°F, which is the 7th warmest temperature measured so early in the year, and 27°F above the normal high of 40°F for the date. Since weather records in the city go back to 1872, we can expect that Minneapolis will experience a temperature of 67°F or higher this early in the year once every 20 years, on average. What’s really remarkable is that the forecast for Minneapolis calls for a high temperature of 70 – 75° every day for the next seven days. Since 1872, there have only been nine days that the temperature has gotten to 70°F prior to March 20, with 73°F on March 7, 2000 being the hottest day. So, over the course of the next week, we are likely to break the all-time high for so early in the year, and add nearly double the number of 70°F-plus days. The situation is similar for much of Wisconsin, Michigan, Illinois, and surrounding states. With temperatures already averaging at least 5°F over much of the Midwest this month, it’s very likely that this month will be the warmest March on record for at least seven states.


UNUSUAL snows on the Oregon coast

As is often the case, record heat in one part of the country means that another part is experiencing unusual cold, due to a kink in the jet stream. On Monday, 6.0″ of snow fell at Newport, OR, and 8.5″ at Tillamook. The Newport snowfall was THEIR GREATEST MARCH SNOWFALL ON RECORD (previous was 2.0″ in March 1906) and the their 3rd greatest snowfall of any month since records began in 1893. For Tillamook it was the biggest snow since 9.0″ in January 1971 (but well short of their all-time snowfall of 19.0″ in March 1951).



Volcanic Activity


Poas volcano (Costa Rica), activity summary Feb 2012: high-temperature fumarolic activity and sporadic small phreatic explosions

During February, Poás activity consisted in strong high-temperature fumarolic activity and sporadic small phreatic explosions, reported by park rangers.
The latest monthly bulletin of Costa Rica’s volcano observatory OBSICORI published a more detailed summary of Poás’ activity during February summarized as follows


Colombia cities on alert as smoke, ash rise from volcano

MANIZALES, COLOMBIA (CBS) — A rising smoke plume from a Colombian volcano put nearby cities and towns on alert as it continued to emit smoke, vapor and ash Monday.

The Nevado del Ruiz volcano, located in central Colombia about 130 kilometers (80 miles) west of Bogota, has been on yellow alert since October 2010 and began spewing ash and smoke last week.



Soufrière Hills volcano (Montserrat): small pyroclastic flow from dome with no warning

A small pyroclastic flow occurred from Montserrat’s Soufrière Hills volcano on 9 March, MVO reports. The flow was small, but happened with no warning at around 5:20 pm (local time) from the western flanks of Soufriere Hills Volcano down into Spring Ghaut.



Solar Activity


Another solar flare and comet dives into solar radiation storm

March 14, 2012 – SPACE – Departing sunspot AR1429 unleashed another strong flare on March 13th, an M7-class eruption that peaked around 1741 UT. Although the sunspot is no longer directly facing Earth, the blast will affect our planet. Analysts at the Goddard Space Weather Lab say a CME is en route to Earth, and its impact on March 15th at 06:20 UT (+/- 7 hours) could trigger minor to moderate geomagnetic storms. Also, protons accelerated by the flare are swarming around Earth, causing an S2-class radiation storm. A bright comet is diving into the sun. It was discovered just last week by SOHO’s SWAN instrument, so it has been named “Comet SWAN.” The comet’s death plunge (or “swan dive”) comes just as the sun has unleashed a strong flare and radiation storm around Earth.






Dolphin Stranding In Brazil Triggers Mad Dash To Save Animals

It was just another day at the beach–or so it seemed till dozens of dolphins suddenly swam in with the surf and got stranded in the sandy shallows. The dramatic video of the stranding in the Brazilian town of Arraial do Cabo–now a YouTube sensation–shows humans rushing to help their fellow mammals, pushing and pulling hard to help the animals reach deeper water.



Uploaded by on Jan 10, 2010

Part 1: Sometimes the city is a bad place to be. But millions find themselves linked to the city, living, working, or recreating. Cessation of services, terrorists attacks, economic or governmental collapse, rioting (for a variety of reasons), and devastating NATURAL disasters can transform a usually-bustling and mostly safe urbanscape into a wasteland where emergency services are either overwhelmed or just unavailable. You may quickly find your survival (and those around you) will be up to you. Go prepared, both with a calm, can-do mindset that will allow you to overcome, adapt, and survive bad situations (and help others to do the same). In this series of vids, I introduce my “Concept USK” or Urban Survival Kit and its philosophy as requested by many TNPrs. A possible motto as you work your way through urban chaos: “Prepare, Survive, Render Aid, Lead.” Some Nutnfancy foundations of the review: most kits will evolve according to need and technology, a kit will have to be personalized for your situation, adherence to legalities of some contents is your responsibility, it’s impossible to prepare for every contingency and SAWC (Space/Size And Weight Constraints) will dictate your level of preparation and kit “depth,” preparations for self-defense are wise, the necessity to blend in and not draw attention to yourself, the concepts of “write-off,” re-stocking, pre-postioning, and redundancy in kit preparation, and guidelines for use. In Part 1 these foundations are discussed and then the item by item review commences starting with carry case considerations and water considerations. Use of defensive and non-lethal OC or pepper spray is shown and discussed (other defensive options shown later) in realistic terms (larger container preferred in urban settings). In a confusing urban survival situation, information could be critical and several items are carried to help improve your “intelligence” gathering including optics (binos, monocular; optional) and a transistor radio for news reports (several models shown). Kit sub-containers and organization discussed too as we approach the review of the Comms Kit. Execution for the USK will take planning, work, and some money (especially applying the “write-off” principle). Currently it is impossible to purchase a serious USK with these capabilities so you will have to make it. But it will give a sense of capability and hope to its user and just may carry him through the day. Sobering possibilities are discussed by necessity but the “USK Concept” is a message of hope and self-reliance./////////////////// See other parts for DETAILED KIT CONTENTS ///////////////////////// Music by
Derek R. Audette – (Socan), CC 2.5 ///////////////// Some images from PhotoBucket.com whose posters have agreed to royalty-free worldwide distribution through unqualified agreement to Photobucket.com Terms of Use.

Uploaded by on Jan 11, 2010

See Part 1 for USK Series intro. Part 2 and 3: DETAILED KIT CONTENTS, Of course all items are subject to improvement, change, or discontinuance by the manufacturer: CARRY CASES: Small day pack (Kelty “Cadence” model used here, 1700 cubes. 2 main compartments), zipped organization pouches, Columbia® Toiletry Valet. COMMS: Survival crank radio or small transistor radio (AA variety like Sony Panasonic RF-P50, Sony ICF-S10MK2, Grundig Mini-300 or similar are good options), 2-way AA cell-capable radios (Motorola #MR351R shown) with 550 cord lanyards, mini polycarbonate signal mirror (Gerber shown, “Ultimate Survival” brand good too), flare pen or gyro jet with extra flares (optional; also hand held compact signal flares), 2 loud whistles (options: Fox, WindStorm, NRS Storm Safety-brand whistles, ‘Ray Gonia’ dog training whistle), 2 fine tip black Sharpie® markers, Post Its®, index cards, waterproof paper (Write in the Rain), Fenix L1D and LD20 AA multi-mode flashlights with light cones (red, white), Fenix light headband, Streamlight Stylus Pro penlight, 8 (min) lithium AA and 4 (min) AAA batteries (Energizer Ultimate Lithium shown). PROTECTIVE GEAR: heavy leather gloves (Petzl rapelling gloves shown, any high quality can work), 4 pair disposable Nitrile exam gloves, safety glasses, sun glasses, dust masks (2 min), foam ear plugs (3 pair), respirator if SAWC permits (AO Safety® model shown), sunscreen, chapstick, disposable plastic poncho or rain suit, skull cap, sweat band, Adventure Medical Kits Thermo-Lite 2 Bivy bags (1 small, 1 large). TOOLS: Leatherman Super Tool 300 (or equivalent), pry bar (options: Stanley “Wonder Bar II,” 10’/25cm “Claw Bar”), multi-bit drivers (like Stanley #68-107 Fiberglass Screwdriver), gas shutoff wrech (not shown), heavy wire, heavy duty aluminum foil, Gorilla® brand duct tape, 3M® electrical tape, mini hacksaw (like Stanley MiniHack #20-807 shown), spring loaded punch, 100 ft 550 nylon cord wrapped on tempered hardboad winder, 25 ft heavy duty nylon cord (on exterior to case belay and lashing), portable saw if SAWC permit, dedicated wire snips, 1 small can WD-40, Stanley Stanley #10-16 Utility knife with extra blades (or Gerber EAB model, reviewed), dedicated mini-scissors (Gerber shown), flint and steel (like “Light My Fire” brand shown, “Ultimate Survival” brand Sparkie also excellent), 2 to 4 packs Trioxane fuel bars, adjustable flame lighter, REI “Lifeboat” matches. SELF DEFENSE: large OC pepper spray container (as big as SAWC allow; UDAP® brand 8 oz bear spray excellent), pry bar, folding tactical/utility blade (Buck Vantage Select shown, many other great options reviewed), Kel-Tec P3-AT .380 auto pistol with extra mag, 50 rds minimum 90 gr Federal HydraShok® ammo, Uncle Mikes Size 10 ankle holster & belt holster (Fobus also good), spare mag case (“RIPOFF” brand shown), mid-size survival knife (options: Ontario SP-17, CS SRK, KaBar Combat, Fallkniven A1, Randall RC-5,etc). MEDICAL: Level 1 Nutnfancy First Aid Kit (see review). WATER: Katadyn Hiker water filter, Nalgene folding Wide-Mouth Cantene 96 oz #2595-0096, coffee or paint screen pre-filters, collapsible backpacking bucket. FOOD: As many energy/candy bars (solid chocolate store best) that SAWC allow, 2 freeze-dried meals, MSR “Pocket Rocket” stove, propane fuel cartridge, tin can/canteen cup/titanium cup with lid, salt packets in plastic baggy. MISC: miniature playing cards, thermo compass, alcohol swabs, Scott-brand blue shop towels, Kleenex®, Kirtland-brand Household anti-bacterial wipes in baggy. PREPOSITIONALBES: Xootr scooter in travel bag (compact, fast, maneuverable escape vehicle, 5 times faster than walking), Rapelling gear (Blue Water brand 150′ kernmantle rope preferred, US Army 120′ surplus rope ok too; good for 9 or so story escape only though), Rescue 8, carabiners, Rapelling seat, Sport Parachute, strap adjusted, ready ///////////////////////// Music by
Derek R. Audette – (Socan), CC 2.5 and original music by TNPr Dudio (youtube.com/user/eldudio) /////////////////////////////// Some images from PhotoBucket.com whose posters have agreed to royalty-free worldwide distribution through unqualified agreement to Photobucket.com Terms of Use.

Uploaded by on Jan 14, 2010

See Part 1 for USK Series intro. Part 2 and 3: DETAILED KIT CONTENTS, Of course all items are subject to improvement, change, or discontinuance by the manufacturer: CARRY CASES: Small day pack (Kelty “Cadence” model used here, 1700 cubes. 2 main compartments), zipped organization pouches, Columbia® Toiletry Valet. COMMS: Survival crank radio or small transistor radio (AA variety like Sony Panasonic RF-P50, Sony ICF-S10MK2, Grundig Mini-300 or similar are good options), 2-way AA cell-capable radios (Motorola #MR351R shown) with 550 cord lanyards, mini polycarbonate signal mirror (Gerber shown, “Ultimate Survival” brand good too), flare pen or gyro jet with extra flares (optional; also hand held compact signal flares), 2 loud whistles (options: Fox, WindStorm, NRS Storm Safety-brand whistles, ‘Ray Gonia’ dog training whistle), 2 fine tip black Sharpie® markers, Post Its®, index cards, waterproof paper (Write in the Rain), Fenix L1D and LD20 AA multi-mode flashlights with light cones (red, white), Fenix light headband, Streamlight Stylus Pro penlight, 8 (min) lithium AA and 4 (min) AAA batteries (Energizer Ultimate Lithium shown). PROTECTIVE GEAR: heavy leather gloves (Petzl rapelling gloves shown, any high quality can work), 4 pair disposable Nitrile exam gloves, safety glasses, sun glasses, dust masks (2 min), foam ear plugs (3 pair), respirator if SAWC permits (AO Safety® model shown), sunscreen, chapstick, disposable plastic poncho or rain suit, skull cap, sweat band, Adventure Medical Kits Thermo-Lite 2 Bivy bags (1 small, 1 large). TOOLS: Leatherman Super Tool 300 (or equivalent), pry bar (options: Stanley “Wonder Bar II,” 10’/25cm “Claw Bar”), multi-bit drivers (like Stanley #68-107 Fiberglass Screwdriver), gas shutoff wrech (not shown), heavy wire, heavy duty aluminum foil, Gorilla® brand duct tape, 3M® electrical tape, mini hacksaw (like Stanley MiniHack #20-807 shown), spring loaded punch, 100 ft 550 nylon cord wrapped on tempered hardboad winder, 25 ft heavy duty nylon cord (on exterior to case belay and lashing), portable saw if SAWC permit, dedicated wire snips, 1 small can WD-40, Stanley Stanley #10-16 Utility knife with extra blades (or Gerber EAB model, reviewed), dedicated mini-scissors (Gerber shown), flint and steel (like “Light My Fire” brand shown, “Ultimate Survival” brand Sparkie also excellent), 2 to 4 packs Trioxane fuel bars, adjustable flame lighter, REI “Lifeboat” matches. SELF DEFENSE: large OC pepper spray container (as big as SAWC allow; UDAP® brand 8 oz bear spray excellent), pry bar, folding tactical/utility blade (Buck Vantage Select shown, many other great options reviewed), Kel-Tec P3-AT .380 auto pistol with extra mag, 50 rds minimum 90 gr Federal HydraShok® ammo, Uncle Mikes Size 10 ankle holster & belt holster (Fobus also good), spare mag case (“RIPOFF” brand shown), mid-size survival knife (options: Ontario SP-17, CS SRK, KaBar Combat, Fallkniven A1, Randall RC-5,etc). MEDICAL: Level 1 Nutnfancy First Aid Kit (see review). WATER: Katadyn Hiker water filter, Nalgene folding Wide-Mouth Cantene 96 oz #2595-0096, coffee or paint screen pre-filters, collapsible backpacking bucket. FOOD: As many energy/candy bars (solid chocolate store best) that SAWC allow, 2 freeze-dried meals, MSR “Pocket Rocket” stove, propane fuel cartridge, tin can/canteen cup/titanium cup with lid, salt packets in plastic baggy. MISC: miniature playing cards, thermo compass, alcohol swabs, Scott-brand blue shop towels, Kleenex®, Kirtland-brand Household anti-bacterial wipes in baggy. PREPOSITIONALBES: Xootr scooter in travel bag (compact, fast, maneuverable escape vehicle, 5 times faster than walking), Rapelling gear (Blue Water brand 150′ kernmantle rope preferred, US Army 120′ surplus rope ok too; good for 9 or so story escape only though), Rescue 8, carabiners, Rapelling seat, Sport Parachute, strap adjusted, ready ///////////////////////// Music by
Derek R. Audette – (Socan), CC 2.5 and original music by TNPr Dudio (youtube.com/user/eldudio) /////////////////////////////// Some images from PhotoBucket.com whose posters have agreed to royalty-free worldwide distribution through unqualified agreement to Photobucket.com Terms of Use.

Politics and Legislation


We Take Care of Our Own: Eric Holder and the End of Rights

Historians of the future, if they are not imprisoned for saying so, will trace the end of America’s democratic experiment to the fearful days immediately after 9/11, what Bruce Springsteen called the days of the empty sky, when frightened, small men named Bush and Cheney made the first decisions to abandon the Constitution in the name of freedom and created a new version of the security state with the Patriot Act, Guantanamo, secret prisons and sanctioned torture by the U.S. government. They proceeded carefully, making sure that lawyers in their employ sanctioned each dark act, much as kings in old Europe used the church to justify their own actions.



Politicians Won’t Return Ponzi Payoffs

Michael Winship, Moyers & Co.:

“On Tuesday, Texas financier Robert Allen Stanford was convicted in a Houston federal court on 13 out of 14 criminal counts of fraud…. But what most of this week’s stories failed to mention was the large amount of his clients’ cash that was spent on campaign contributions, greasing the corrupt nexus of money and politics for personal gain. Hundreds of thousands of dollars were given to candidates,  Barack Obama, John McCain, John Boehner and Harry Reid; including Ponzi Payoffs; as well as national fundraising committees for the Republican and Democratic parties.”



Confusion Surrounds Federal Review of Southern Leg of Keystone XL

Lisa Song, InsideClimate News:

“TransCanada’s decision last week to build the southern half of the rejected Keystone XL has raised a tricky question about who will regulate the project review … The process could be stickier at the federal level. The U.S. State Department was the lead agency on the original Keystone XL because it crossed an international boundary. But so far, no agency has stepped forward to take responsibility for the Gulf Coast Project.”



A Field of Hawks

Eugene Robinson, Washington Post Writers Group:

“Unless Ron Paul somehow wins the nomination, it looks as if a vote for the Republican presidential candidate this fall will be a vote for war with Iran. No other conclusion can be drawn from parsing the candidates’ public remarks. Paul, of course, is basically an isolationist who believes it is none of our business if Iran wants to build nuclear weapons…. But Paul has about as much chance of winning the GOP nomination as I do.”



No Apocalypse Yet
Will Putin do what the oligarchs fear?


If he wants to survive politically, he will have to implement the national agenda, confront the oligarchs, curb the creative class, provide support to those who supported him.



Obama Signs Anti-protest Trespass Bill


US President Barack Obama signed his name to H.R. 347 on Thursday, officially making it a federal offense to cause a disturbance at certain political events – essentially criminalizing protest in the States.



‘War on Terror is War on Liberty’
Farage demands that the UK break treaty with US

By Nigel Farage: EU MP

“No British court has ever been allowed to examine the evidence against Mr Tappin and I believe this Treaty, signed in the wake of the September 11 attacks, needs to be amended and the British government needs to stand up for its own people.




Not So Fast On That Whole Economic Recovery Thing

Not so fast. Those that are publicly declaring that an economic recovery has arrived are ignoring a whole host of numbers that indicate that the U.S. economy is in absolutely horrendous shape. The truth is that the health of an economy should not be measured by how well the stock market is doing. Rather, the truth health of an economy should be evaluated by looking at numbers for things like jobs, housing, poverty and debt. Some of the latest economic statistics indicate that unemployment is getting a little bit worse, that the housing market continues to deteriorate, that poverty in America continues to soar and that our debt problem is worse than ever.



TEXT-Moody’s: Greek sovereign credit rating remains at C

Moody’s Investors Service says that it considers Greece

to have defaulted per Moody’s default definitions further to the conclusion of an exchange of EUR177 billion of Greece’s debt that is governed by Greek law for bonds issued by the Greek government, GDP-linked securities, European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF) notes. Foreign-law bonds are eligible for the same offer, and Moody’s expects a similar debt exchange to proceed with these bondholders, as well as the holders of state-owned enterprise debt that has been guaranteed by the state, in the coming weeks. The respective securities will enter our default statistics at the tender expiration date, which is was Thursday 8 March for the Greek law bonds and is currently expected to be 23 March for foreign law bonds. Greece’s government bond rating remains unchanged at C, the lowest rating on Moody’s rating scale.



Security: UK ‘must plan for euro collapse’

Ministers should draw up plans to deal with a break-up of the eurozone “as a matter of urgency”, a committee of MPs and peers has warned.

The joint committee on the government’s National Security Strategy (NSS) said the full or partial collapse of the single currency was “plausible”.

It said political unrest and a rise in economic migrant numbers could result.



Wall Street up on jobs data, brushes off Greek default

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Stocks advanced on Friday as investors brushed off the technical default by Greece and focused instead on another strong monthly jobs report.

Trading was choppy in late afternoon trade after the International Swaps and Derivatives Association said Greece has triggered an insurance payment on credit default contracts.

Investors took the Greek news largely in stride because the event was widely expected. Still, it is a declaration of default following the biggest sovereign debt-restructuring deal in history, and the specter of trouble in other euro-zone countries remains.



Bernanke Is Giving Us the Recovery He Wants, Not the Recovery We Need

With the latest round of monetary stimulus, the Federal Reserve is boldly going where it has already been. Big, big news from the Federal Reserve. They are considering doing something they are already doing, but calling it something else.

This “new” operation, carried out under the rather gross-sounding moniker of “sterilized quantitative easing,” is just another way to reduce long-term interest rates. The specifics aren’t terribly important — although if you want all the gory details about bond-buying and reverse repos, check out Jon Hilsenrath — but the result should be identical to the so-called “Operation Twist” the Fed did last fall.



UPDATE 6-Oil up on jobs data even as dollar rallies

By Robert Gibbons

NEW YORK, March 9 (Reuters) – Oil prices rose a third straight day on Friday as data showing rising U.S. employment countered any pressure from a stronger dollar and faded euphoria after Greece’s debt swap deal.
U.S. nonfarm payrolls rose by 227,000 in February, above expectations and marking the third straight month that gains topped 200,000, though the unemployment rate held at a three-year low of 8.3 percent.



PRECIOUS-Gold turns higher on US jobs data, oil gains

By Frank Tang and Amanda Cooper

NEW YORK/LONDON, March 9 (Reuters) – Gold rose above
$1,700 an ounce in heavy trade on Friday, reversing early sharp losses as the metal took heart from gains in crude oil and U.S. equities’ after an encouraging U.S. nonfarm payrolls report.
Bullion, which has taken to following riskier assets, rose in the face of a dollar rally and fading hopes of further U.S. monetary stimulus after U.S. employment grew strongly for a third straight month.
Also lifting the metal was Greece’s averting an immediate default after its bond swap offer to private creditors. Technical buying also helped after prices rebounded off its key 200-day moving average.



Public-Sector Banks: From Black Sheep to Global Leaders

Once the black sheep of high finance, government owned banks can reassure depositors about the safety of their savings and can help maintain a focus on productive investment in a world in which effective financial regulation remains more of an aspiration than a reality.



Welcome to the One Percent Recovery

Mike Konczal, New Deal 2.0:

“As the one percent reap 93 percent of the income gains from the recovery, we’re rapidly returning to pre-New Deal levels of inequality … It’s important to remember that a series of choices were made during the New Deal to react to runaway inequality, including changes to progressive taxation, financial regulation, monetary policy, labor unionization, and the provisioning of public goods and guaranteed social insurance. A battle will be fought over the next decade on all these fronts.”



Jeffrey Sachs’ Reform Candidacy for World Bank President

Staff, Center for Economic and Policy Research:

“Economist and health expert Jeffrey Sachs’ reported candidacy for World Bank president is welcome news for the two-and-a-half billion people around the world living in poverty, Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR) Co-Director Mark Weisbrot said today. ‘If Sachs were to get the job, he would be the first World Bank president with this kind of experience and knowledge of economic development … All of the others have been bankers, politicians, or political appointees.'”



China posts Feb. trade deficit

For the first time in a year, China recorded a trade deficit of 31.48 billion U.S. dollars in February, as import growth far outpaced exports.

Exports rose 18.4 percent from a year earlier to 114.47 billion U.S. dollars in February, while imports were up 39.6 percent to 145.96 billion U.S. dollars, customs data showed Saturday.

The fast trade expansion was fueled by the lower comparative base for last February, when the Chinese Lunar New Year holiday cut working days from the month and skewed trade data, the General Administration of Customs (GAC) said. The week-long holiday fell in January this year.

After seasonal adjustments, the annual growth of exports slowed to 4 percent in February while that of imports was cut down to 9.4 percent.


Life in America on Two Dollars a Day
Or Why American Poverty Will Soon Match That of the Third World

By CanSpeccy

The latest poverty statistics that show the number of American families with an income of less than two dollars per person per day more than doubled between 1996 and 201.



China to export yuan to BRICS:

China is reportedly to begin extending loans in yuan to BRICS countries in another step towards internationalizing the national currency and diversifying from the US dollar.



Iceland calls its former PM to account for financial crash:

Geir Haarde, whose trial began this week, could face up to two years in jail if convicted over country’s 2008 economic collapse



Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, Set to Default on $5.27 Million GO Bond Payments:

The city, carrying a debt load of more than five times its general-fund budget, will miss $5.27 million in bond payments due March 15 on $51.5 million of bonds issued in 1997.



Wars and Rumors of War


The Kazakhstan Massacre: Killing Hope to Benefit US Geopolitical Interests

Steve Horn and Allen Ruff, Truthout: “December 16, 2011, should have been, at minimum, a fairly bright day for the people of Kazakhstan marking the country’s Independence Day and 20th birthday. But rather than being a moment of celebration, it became a day of brutal repression and death, a bloody scene in the regional center of Zhanaozen paralleling those that occurred at the hands of US-supported dictatorial regimes during the uprisings now commonly referred to as the Arab Spring.”



Russia says 15,000 foreign “terrorists” in Syria

(Reuters) – Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is battling al Qaeda-backed “terrorists” including at least 15,000 foreign fighters who will seize towns across Syria if government troops withdraw, a Russian diplomat said on Thursday.



After a Decade, Afghan Forces Don’t Trust Americans

Jon Stephenson and Ali Safi, McClatchy Newspapers:

“Afghan soldiers and police say the recent burning of Qurans by U.S. personnel has seriously undermined their trust in their American counterparts, suggesting that the decade-long campaign to win hearts and minds has not only failed but also threatens the Obama administration’s exit strategy. ‘We are tired of the Americans here,’ said Mohammad Aziz, 20, a Kabul police officer. ‘We don’t want them to stay because they keep insulting our religion.'”



Fresh barrage of Gaza rockets strike Israel’s south

Iron Dome intercepts a number of rockets over Be’er Sheva on Saturday morning; 12 Palestinians reportedly killed in IAF strikes in Gaza since Friday.



Obama has partially left his delusions about Iran: Leader

TEHRAN – Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei says that U.S. President Barack Obama has partially left his delusions about Iran.

The Leader made the remarks during a meeting with the members of the Assembly of Experts in Tehran on Thursday.

“Two days ago, we heard that the U.S. president said, ‘We do not think of war against Iran.’ Well, this is good. This is a logical remark. This is an exit from delusion. In addition, he said, ‘We will bring the Iranian people to their knees through sanctions.’ This is a delusion. The exit from delusion in the first part is good, but remaining in delusion in the second part will harm them. When one’s calculations are based on delusion, it is obvious that the planning he makes based on those calculations will end in failure,” Ayatollah Khamenei stated.



The Bloody Road to Damascus
The Triple Alliance’s War on a Sovereign State

By James Petras

There is clear and overwhelming evidence that the uprising to overthrow President Assad of Syria is a violent, power grab led by foreign-supported fighters.



10 Myths about Iran Driving the Insane Push for War
And Why They’re Dead Wrong

By Jasmin Ramsey

Israeli officials and GOP candidates spout nonsense about Iran. Here’s the truth.



Weapons Financed By US Kill Unarmed Palestinians and U.S. Citizens.

By David Elkins

“U.S. weapons provided to Israel at taxpayer expense make the U.S. complicit in Israel’s human rights abuses of Palestinians living under Israel’s 44-year military occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and Gaza Strip”



Kofi Annan’s calls for talks spark anger:

Syrian opposition activists have angrily rejected calls by Kofi Annan, the UN and Arab League envoy to Syria, for dialogue with the government.



Assad Tells Kofi Annan He’s Open To ‘Honest Effort To Find Solution’:


Assad warned the envoy that dialogue was unlikely to succeed while “armed terrorist groups” remained.



Russia threatens to veto U.S. resolution on Syria:

Russia will not support a new U.S.-drafted resolution on Syria because it fails to urge both the government and the rebels to halt violence, said a top Russian diplomat.



No military solution in Syria: EU ministers:

As Qatar called in Cairo for the dispatch of Arab and international peacekeeping troops to Syria, Juppe joined his counterparts in saying that for the EU “military action is not on the agenda.”



US officials: Loyal army, inner circle back Assad:

Despite the Obama administration’s predictions that the Syrian government’s days are numbered, recent U.S. intelligence reports suggest President Bashar Assad commands a formidable army that is unlikely to turn on him, an inner circle that has stayed loyal and an elite class that still supports his rule.



Controversy surrounds CNN footage from Syrian activist:

Video footage broadcast by CNN purporting to depict Syrian government violence was staged by the journalist reporting on camera, recent reports have claimed.



If Iran attacked it will launch 11,000 missiles at Israel, US: envoy:

Tehran’s ambassador to Lebanon says Iran has prepared itself to launch about 11,000 missiles at Israel and U.S. bases in the region if they do a strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities, the Lebanese media reported.





The Problem With the Environment Is Not Too Many People

Eleanor J. Bader, Truthout:

“We’ve all heard the claim repeatedly: humans pollute, so if we just reduce the number of people – both the number being born and the number immigrating from point A to point B – the despoiling will cease and Eden will be restored. If only it could be so simple…. ‘Too Many People?’ is a clear and convincing challenge to the idea of population control as political necessity.”



Fracking Likely Caused Series of Ohio Quakes, Officials Say

Michael Muskal and Neela Banerjee , News Report:

Ohio’s Department of Natural Resources issued new regulations for transporting and disposing of brine wastewater, a fracking byproduct, making for the nation’s toughest disposal regulations, state officials said. Though the quake damage was minor – the largest was a 4.0 magnitude – environmental groups questioned whether the state’s safety rules were strong enough to protect the area from disasters they attributed to hydraulic fracturing.





New York Times CEO Robinson’s Exit Compensation Package Tops $23 Million

Janet Robinson, the New York Times Co. chief executive officer who was pushed out in December, received an exit package, including stock options and retirement benefits, of $23.7 million.

Robinson gets pension and supplemental retirement income valued at $11.4 million, performance awards of $5.39 million, restricted stock units worth $1.07 million and stock options worth $694,164, according to the company’s proxy statement filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission today. She will also earn $4.5 million in consulting fees for this year.



NSA whistle-blower: Obama “worse than Bush”

Thomas Drake on life inside the National Security Agency and the price of truth telling

Thomas Drake, the whistle-blower whom the Obama administration tried and failed to prosecute for leaking information about waste, fraud and abuse at the National Security Agency, now works at an Apple store in Maryland. In an interview with Salon, Drake laughed about the time he confronted Attorney General Eric Holder at his store while Holder perused the gadgetry on display with his security detail around him. When Drake started asking Holder questions about his case, America’s chief law enforcement officer turned and fled the store.



Mass pro-democracy protest rocks Bahrain

(Reuters) – Tens of thousands of Bahrainis demonstrated on Friday to demand democratic reforms, stepping up pressure on the U.S.-allied government with the biggest protest yet in a year of unrest.



Three Ways to Beat Corporate Giants

Jim Shultz, Op-Ed:

From insurance companies lording over our health care to global conglomerates taking control of our water, corporate giants wield more and more influence over our lives and our environment. So how do we fight back? How do we take on corporate power and actually win? The Democracy Center recently published a new citizen’s resource that looks up close at the strategies that people and communities are using worldwide to successfully tackle corporate giants.



Don’t Look Away from Bahrain’s Revolution

By Ala’a Shehabi

Over the past year, as cameras turned away, the Bahraini regime carried out some of the worst atrocities in its history.



Bahraini forces kill 21-year-old protester in capital Manama:

Activists say the protester, named Fadhel Mirza, was killed on Saturday when regime forces attacked a group of demonstrators struggling to reach Pearl Square.





Stratfor: Blood On Their Hands
And it gets worse.

By Khadija Sharife

With their emails, Stratfor appears to advocate for a world where polluters and murderers, circumvent accountability by obtaining information to pre-empt – and in the process destroy – their opposition.



The Crime of Truth:
Obama’s Persecution of the Peacemaker

By Chris Floyd

Bradley Manning will spend the rest of his life in a federal prison for the unforgiveable crime of telling the truth to people who don’t want to hear it.



The Dirty War on WikiLeaks

By John Pilger

Media smears suggest Swedish complicity in a Washington-driven push to punish Julian Assange.




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.