Friday, March 2, 2012

SOLAR WATCH: New and Active Sunspot Produces Moderate C3.3 Flare - The Solar Wind Stream and Interplanetary Magnetic Field Continues to Buffet Crack in the Earth's Magnetosphere!

Although, the new sunspot 1427 poses no threat for strong flares, a solar wind stream flowing from a minor coronal hole could reach Earth on March 4-5.

NEW ACTIVE REGION: A new and active Sunspot is now rotating into view on the northeast limb. It produced a moderate M3.3 solar flare at 17:45 UTC on Friday afternoon. All of the other current regions have been stable since the C3.3 flare around 1423 on Thursday. SOLAR WIND INCREASE: The solar wind did show a gradual increase to near 550km/s on Thursday and combined with a predominantly south tilting Bz, it did trigger minor geomagnetic activity at very high latitudes. The Kp reached 4 at its peak. The increase in geomagnetic activity was most likely due to a solar sector boundary crossing. MODERATE SOLAR FLARE: A moderate solar flare reaching M3.3 took place at 17:46 UTC Friday afternoon around a new sunspot rotating into view on the northeast limb. - Solar Ham.
FIRST AURORAS OF MARCH: A magnetic disturbance rippled around the Arctic Circle during the waning hours of March 1st, sparking bright auroras just as night fell over northern Europe. "The show was stunning and amazing," says Thomas Albin, who sends this picture from Esrange, Sweden.  "There were three different colors visible and the dynamics of the lights were incredible!" he says. A medium-speed solar wind stream is buffeting Earth's magnetic field. By itself, this was not enough to explain what happened. The extra ingrediant was the IMF: the interplanetary magnetic field near Earth tilted south, opening a crack in our planet's magnetosphere. Solar wind poured in and fueled the display. - Space Weather.

WATCH: M3.3 Solar Flare.


ANIMAL BEHAVIOR: "Alien Betty" - Mediterranean Fish Under Threat From Fast-Spreading and Gruesome "Alien-Like" Parasite Which Eats Their Tongues and Then Lives in Their Mouths?!

A gruesome ‘Alien-like’ parasite which eats the tongues of bream and then 'replaces' them in its victims mouths is spreading in the Mediterranean. Almost half the fish in some areas are infected with the parasite, which swims in through the gills of young fish, then takes up position on top of the tongue, feeding on blood and growing.

Researchers found that the 'cerathotoa italica' parasite - named 'Betty' by the scientists - is spreading fastest in heavily fished waters. Though the parasite poses no risk to humans, it stunts the growth of the fish, and lowers their life expectancy. The researchers found that 'Betty' thrived in overfished areas. In a protected area near Spain, only 30% of fish were infected - in heavily fished Italian waters, 47% had fallen victim to the parasite. Dr Stefano Mariani of the University of Salford said: ‘This is further evidence that human over-exploitation of fish stocks has adverse and far-reaching effects. 

Areas with poor regulation have smaller, younger fish and, as we’ve now demonstrated, higher and more harmful parasite infestations.'  ‘Betty is quite gruesome and does remind you of the Alien films, but it’s a highly adapted and specialised animal which is very successful. Unfortunately, over-fishing upsets the balance of parasite and host and interferes with the whole eco-system. ‘It makes a lot of sense for protected areas to be established so we can safeguard both the quantity and the quality of the fish we eat.’ Salford’s Dr Stefano Mariani and colleagues from University College Dublin and the University of East Anglia inspected stocks of striped sea bream in two areas of the Mediterranean - a Spanish area protected from fishing and heavily fished Italian waters. The researchers also found that the parasite had worse effects on fish from heavily fished areas - while the parasite infection sigthnificantly stunted growth and condition in the Italian fish, it had no detectable effects on the physiology of the Spanish ones. - Daily Mail.


EARTH CHANGES: Oceans Turning Acidic Faster than Past 300 Million Years!

The oceans are becoming more acidic faster than they have in the past 300 million years, a period that includes four mass extinctions, researchers have found. Then, as is happening now, increases in carbon dioxide in the atmosphere warmed the planet and made the oceans more acidic. These changes are associated with major shifts in climate and mass extinctions. But while past increases in the atmosphere's carbon dioxide levels resulted from volcanoes and other natural causes, today that spike is due to human activities, the scientists note.

The single-celled organism Stensioeina beccariiformis survived the mass extinction that killed the dinosaurs
but went extinct 56 million years ago, when the oceans acidified due to a massive carbon dioxide release.
"What we're doing today really stands out," lead researcher Bärbel Hönisch, a paleoceanographer at Columbia University's Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, said in a news release. "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." As the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere increases, oceans absorb that carbon dioxide, which turns into a carbon acid. As a result the pH - a measure of acidity - drops, meaning the water has become more acidic. This dissolves the carbonates needed by some organisms, like corals, oysters or the tiny snails salmon eat.

In their review, published Thursday (March 1) in the journal Science, Hönisch and colleagues found the closest modern parallel about 56 millions ago in what is called the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum, when atmospheric carbon concentrations doubled, pushing up global temperatures. Extinctions in the deep sea accompanied this shift. (The PETM occurred about 9 million years after the dinosaurs went extinct.) But, now, the ocean is acidifying at least 10 times faster than it did 56 million years ago, according to Hönisch. Ocean acidification may also have occurred when volcanoes pumped massive amounts of carbon dioxide into the air 252 million years ago, at the end of the Permian period, and 201 million years ago, at the end of the Triassic period, they found. Both are associated with mass extinctions. "The current rate of (mainly fossil fuel) carbon dioxide release stands out as capable of driving a combination and magnitude of ocean geochemical changes potentially unparalleled in at least the last 300 million years of Earth history, raising the possibility that we are entering an unknown territory of marine ecosystem change," the researchers conclude in their paper. - Live Science.


THE GREAT DELUGE: The Australia Weather Anomalies Continue - Unstoppable and Unusual Heavy Rains as Floodwaters Inch Closer to the Top of the Warragamba Dam; Worst Floods in New South Wales in 125 Years!

Floodwaters are inching closer to the top of Warragamba Dam, while across the state thousands are being forced to evacuate their homes. More than 1,000 people are preparing to leave their homes in New South Wales as floods threaten at least half of Australia’s most populous state and as a dam that supplies Sydney’s water threatens to spill. According to the Associated Press, New South Wales is facing its heaviest deluge in decades. The State Emergency Service says the widespread rain has led to a most extraordinary and unusual flood situation with 75 per cent of the state facing flood warnings. Four communities in southern New South Wales have broken century old rainfall records. A number of towns from Cooma in the Snowy Mountains to Bathurst in the central tablelands are on flood alert, and 1500 people across the state have been ordered to evacuate. Rain has eased slightly today but the Bureau of Meteorology predicts intense falls of up to 100 millimetres across the state, further worsening flood affected areas.

After days of anticipation Warragamba Dam has finally reached 100 per capacity and water is spilling over the wall. Just before 7pm (AEDT) today, water began gushing down a 100m spillway into a pond below. The pond acts as an energy dissipater, slowing the water before it flows down the Warragamba River to join the Hawkesbury-Nepean system... The news comes after a downpour that put the state on high alert, with three-quarters of NSW at risk of flood. Tumut in southern NSW might again be the focus of flood concerns tomorrow as the wandering band of torrential rain which has soaked much of NSW shifts south. "It could be a hot spot tomorrow - they are expecting a lot of rain again as the rain band drifts south,'' State Emergency Services spokesman Phil Campbell told thetelegraph.com.au this afternoon... Mr Campbell said Warragamba Dam was at 98.7 per cent capacity this afternoon and was set to spill over possibly tonight or tomorrow. "There's been a bit of flooding in western Sydney but it's the very low laying areas, we've had a few animal rescues but the roads and bridges are OK at the moment,'' he said. "That could change tonight or tomorrow. The rain band is expected to shift to put more rain over the catchment for Warragamba so that would increase the chance of flooding in that north western Sydney fringe.''

The dense, slow-moving rain band is lingering a little longer then expected as it moves up and down NSW, said BoM forecaster Julie Evans. After millions of litres of rainwater poured from swollen rivers into Warragamba Dam yesterday, parents in Sydney's western fringes were advised to keep children home from school today amid fears the area will be flooded when the dam spills over. From 10mm and 30mm fell over the Sydney catchment overnight, with 50mm predicted to fall over coming days, she said."We've got 75 per cent of NSW either in flood or potentially in flood," he added. The SES yesterday made evacuation orders for Cooma, affecting about 900 people, at Goulburn for about 600 people and at Cowra for about 60. Seven river systems - the Murray, Hawkesbury-Nepean, Lachlan, Queanbeyan and Molonglo, Tumut and Murrumbidgee, Bega and Snowy - are under flood warning. Weather Channel meteorologist Tom Saunders said a pattern of abnormal sea surface temperatures and a record warm Indian Ocean was behind the massive rainfall, setting up a soaked autumn. "As the current La Nina weakens it was initially expected our rainfall patterns would return to normal by the middle of autumn," he said. "However, a new pattern of abnormal sea surface temperatures has developed to our west with a record warm Indian Ocean. "Australia is surrounded by very warm ocean temperatures. The Indian Ocean has been steaming over 3C higher than normal during the past few months ... the warmer seas have increased evaporation which has allowed the atmosphere over Australia to become saturated with moisture - the perfect recipe for heavy rain and flooding. "The heavy rains should continue through autumn." - Weekly Times Now.
WATCH: Unstoppable rains in New South Wales.


EXTRATERRESTRIAL & UFO MEMES: National UFO Alert - Six American States Report 211 February Cases!

The National UFO ALERT Rating System has been updated March 1, 2012, with California, Texas, Pennsylvania, Florida, Michigan and Arizona moving to a UFO Alert 3 as the highest reporting states during the month of February 2012, filed with the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON).

California was the leading high-reporting state in February with 71 cases, down from 90 cases filed in January. Those states in a UFO Alert 4 category with 13 or more reports include: New Jersey, Washington, New York, Missouri, Illinois, Virginia and North Carolina. Those states in a UFO Alert 4 category with 13 or more reports include: New Jersey, Washington, New York, Missouri, Illinois, Virginia and North Carolina. All other states move to a UFO Alert 5 category with lower numbers of UFO activity. The Watch States - with 10 or more cases - are Georgia, Indiana and Kentucky. MUFON released February statistics March 1, where the total number of reported UFO sightings is listed by state. The UFO Examiner uses these statistics to rate states. The entire country was moved back to the lowest alert level - UFO Alert 5. California takes the lead with 71 cases (down from 90 reports in January); Texas, 47 cases; Pennsylvania, 37 cases; Florida, 33 cases; Michigan, 30 cases; and Arizona, 23 cases.

Those states with 13 or more reports, the next reporting tier level, are a UFO Alert 4 status: New Jersey, 21 cases; Washington, 20 cases; New York, 18 cases; Missouri, 17 cases; Illinois, 16 cases; Virginia, 14 cases; and North Carolina, 14 cases. Our Watch States this month are - with 10 reports or more: Georgia, 12 cases; Indiana, 12 cases; and Kentucky, 10 cases. The sphere remains the most-reported UFO shape with 168 February reports. Other shape reports include: star-like, 102; circle, 92; triangle, 78; other, 75; disc, 74; unknown, 73; oval, 59; fireball, 59; flash, 32; square/rectangular, 26; cylinder, 25; cigar, 21; Saturn-like, 12; boomerang, 12; diamond, 11; egg, 10; bullet-missile, 10; blimp, 9; chevron, 7; teardrop, 7; cone, 6; and cross, 4. The object's distance from the witness includes: Less than 100 feet, 70 cases; 101 to 500 feet, 72 cases; 501 feet to one mile, 142 cases; over one mile, 177 cases; unknown, 168; and no value stated, 17.
In addition, there were "13 landings, hovering, or takeoffs reported and 0 entities observed." The most interesting UFO reports do not necessarily come from high reporting states - but those states with higher numbers do account for some of the most interesting evidence to study. While UFO sightings seem to pop up randomly around the country, this list is meant to offer a small insight into where Americans are filing reports. - Roger Marsh/National UFO Examiner.

TERMINATOR NOW: Rise of the Machines - New "Thinking Cap" Technologies That Can Control Weaponry Moves a Step Closer; as Super-Human Brain Technology Sparks Ethics Debate!

New technologies that tap into the brain and allow weapons to one day be fired through mind control could soon become a reality, British scientists claim. Researchers believe that new "thinking caps", could help provide super-human strength, highly enhanced concentration or thought-controlled weaponry.

A British ethics group is investigating the ethical dilemmas posed by inventions that interfere with the brain's inner workings. The Nuffield Council on Bioethics (NCB) has launched a consultation on the risks posed by such new technologies, the global market for which it says is worth $8bn (£5bn) and "growing fast. With the prospect of future conflicts between armies controlling weapons with their minds, the Council, an independent body, is wanting to identify what issues that come with blurring the lines between humans and machines. Applications range from medicine to warfare and even human enhancement while some techniques such as deep brain stimulation (DBS) are already used by thousands of patients.

The consultation will look at whether having decisions affected by a computer chip in the brain could lead to a sense of diminished responsibility amongst users. "Intervening in the brain has always raised both hopes and fears in equal measure," said Prof Thomas Baldwin, from York University, who is leading the study. "Hopes of curing terrible diseases, and fears about the consequences of trying to enhance human capability beyond what is normally possible. "These challenge us to think carefully about fundamental questions to do with the brain: What makes us human? What makes us an individual? And how and why do we think and behave in the way we do?" He added: "It is not just science fiction... I don’t think it is unrealistic if you have the unlimited funds of the Pentagon to project ourselves towards some kind of Star Wars future. "Setting pharmaceuticals aside, the value of the market for the devices and technologies we are dealing with is something in the region of $8 billion, and growing fast." The NCB, which investigates ethical issues raised by new developments in biology and medicine, wants to focus on three main areas of neurotechnologies that change the brain. These include brain-computer interfaces (BCIs), neurostimulation techniques such as deep brain stimulation (DBS) or transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), and neural stem cell therapy. These technologies are already at various stages of development for use in the treatment of medical conditions including Parkinson's disease, depression and stroke...

Experts believe they could bring significant benefits, especially for patients with severe brain disease or damage. Alena Buyx, of the Nuffield Council, said: "A trial in the UK showed it improved performance in maths and there have been calls for it to be introduced for children in education. We know of children prescribed ritalin [a drug for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder] to boost their school performance. Should we try to create individuals with superhuman abilities?" In the military, BCIs are being used to develop weapons or vehicles controlled remotely by brain signals. Experts say there is there is big commercial scope in the gaming industry with the development of computer games controlled by people's thoughts. Kevin Warwick, a professor of Cybernetics at the University of Reading and a supporter of more neurotechnology research, said some experimental brain technologies had great potential in medicine. "From the brain signals, a brain computer interface could translate a person's desire to move ... and then use those signals to operate a wheelchair or other piece of technology," he said. "For someone who has locked-in syndrome, for example, and cannot communicate, a BCI could be life-changing." But the pair stressed there are concerns about safety of some experimental techniques that involve implants in the brain, and about the ethics of using such technology in other medicine and other fields. Prof Baldwin said: "If brain-computer interfaces are used to control military aircraft or weapons from far away, who takes ultimate responsibility for the actions? Could this be blurring the line between man and machine?" - Telegraph.

GEOLOGICAL UPHEAVAL: Stunning Land Subsidence in China - Sinkholes, Landslides, and Collapse of Many Roads!

The land subsidence in China continues and seems to be increasing and spreading rapidly across the communist state. Have a look at the following images:

Road in Wenling, Taizhou, Zhejiang. Read more HERE.

River Road, Jin'an, Fuzhou. Read more HERE.

Metro line in Hangzhou, Zhejiang. Read more HERE.

Sinkhole in the city Zhangjiakou, Hebei. Read more HERE.

Roads and construction site in Jiuting, Songjiang, Shanghai. Read more HERE and HERE.

Road in Miaoli City, Taiwan. Read more HERE and HERE.

Landslide in Gengma, Lincang, Yunnan. Read more HERE.

Land collapse in Fu Yang, Hefei. Read more HERE.

NOTE: Special thanks to Andrey Eroshin of the Pole Shift Ning for the compilation of the information and pictures.



BIG BROTHER NOW: The Emerging Global Police State - New Speech-Jamming Gun Hints at Dystopian Big Brother Future!

Japanese researchers have created a hand-held gun that can jam the words of speakers who are more than 30 meters (100ft) away. The gun has two purposes, according to the researchers: At its most basic, this gun could be used in libraries and other quiet spaces to stop people from speaking — but its second application is a lot more chilling.

The researchers were looking for a way to stop “louder, stronger” voices from saying more than their fair share in conversation. The paper reads: “We have to establish and obey rules for proper turn-taking when speaking. However, some people tend to lengthen their turns or deliberately interrupt other people when it is their turn in order to establish their presence rather than achieve more fruitful discussions. Furthermore, some people tend to jeer at speakers to invalidate their speech.” In other words, this speech-jamming gun was built to enforce “proper” conversations. The gun works by listening in with a directional microphone, and then, after a short delay of around 0.2 seconds, playing it back with a directional speaker. This triggers an effect that psychologists call Delayed Auditory Feedback (DAF), which has long been known to interrupt your speech (you might’ve experienced the same effect if you’ve ever heard your own voice echoing through Skype or another voice comms program). According to the researchers, DAF doesn’t cause physical discomfort, but the fact that you’re unable to talk is obviously quite stressful.
Suffice it to say, if you’re a firm believer in free speech, you should now be experiencing a deafening cacophony of alarm bells. Let me illustrate a few examples of how this speech-jamming gun could be used. At a political rally, an audience member could completely lock down Santorum, Romney, Paul, or Obama from speaking. On the flip side, a totalitarian state could point the speech jammers at the audience to shut them up. Likewise, when a celebrity or public figure appears on a live TV show, his contract could read “the audience must be silenced with speech jammers.” Then there’s Harrison Bergeron, one of my favorite short stories by Kurt Vonnegut. In the story’s dystopian universe, everyone wears “handicaps” to ensure perfect social equality. Strong people must lug around heavy weights, beautiful people must wear masks, and intelligent people must wear headphones that play a huge blast of sound every few seconds, interrupting your thoughts. The more intelligent you are, the more regular the blasts. Back here in our universe, it’s not hard to imagine a future where we are outfitted with a variety of implanted electronics or full-blown bionic organs. Just last week we wrote about Google’s upcoming augmented-reality glasses, which will obviously have built-in earbuds. Late last year we covered bionic eyes that can communicate directly with the brain, and bionic ears and noses can’t be far off. In short, imagine if a runaway mega-corporation or government gains control of these earbuds. Not only could the intelligence-destroying blasts from Harrison Bergeron come to pass, but with Delayed Auditory Feedback it would be possible to render the entire population mute. Well, actually, that’s a lie: Apparently DAF doesn’t work with utterances like “ahhh!” or “boooo!” or other non-wordy constructs. So, basically, we’d all be reduced to communicating with grunts and gestures. - Extreme Tech.
WATCH: Speech-jamming gun that silences speech.

MONUMENTAL EARTH CHANGES: The Great Rift - Massive 350 Square Miles Iceberg, the Size of New York Forms in Antarctica!

NASA have recorded a huge iceberg splitting from the Pine Island Glacier in the west Antarctic.

Combining digital photography and laser generated ground maps, Nasa have created a three dimensional fly through of the large crack which is running along the side of the Pine Island Glacier in west Antarctica. Once the crack reaches the bottom of the glacier, the resulting iceberg is expected to be 350 square miles in size. Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island and the Bronx combined only cover 303 square miles. Pine Island, one of the largest and fastest moving glaciers in Antarctica has concerned climate scientists for years because its ice is thinning at a high rate. - Telegraph.
WATCH: The Great Rift in Antarctica.


HIGH STRANGENESS: Mysterious Plume Blankets Kewalo Basin, Honolulu, Hawaii - Mass Fish Die-Off Results?!

A mysterious cloudy substance is emptying into Kewalo Basin from a storm drain at an alarming rate.

The mystery plume started pouring into Kewalo Basin before sunrise. "It was like 5:30 in the morning and I was standing here and then all of a sudden it came all at one time," said Robert St. Romain of Sashimi Fishing Tours. At first light he and other boat owners were stunned by the free flowing plume that turned the water white. "Just was coming out here like crazy just like you see it right now and it muddied the whole harbor in a matter of five minutes." "The whole harbor was just glazed over usually you can see down," said a boater. And it kept coming hundreds of gallons of milky brown fluid every minute. "That storm drain is capable of close to a million gallons a day of water coming through," said Kewalo Basin Harbor Master Charles Barclay. He said he's never seen anything like this. "If it was a sewage discharge or if it was an oil discharge we'd smell it but this is a siltation." "Obviously it's not oil because you don't see any slick on top," said boater Michael de Jong. "I don't know what else it might be. Do you have anything further?" asked Barclay. About a dozen state and city officials were on the scene. Everyone was baffled by the source. City crews visited numerous construction sites and checked for broken water mains but found no clues.

"The storm water drain where it's coming out of connects to an artesian well up by the Blaisdell Center," said Barclay. He said this is one of 37 storm drains in Kewalo Basin. But this particular drainage was seldom source of storm runoff and the rains weren't heavy over-night. "Some floating fish." Barclay says boat owners reported seeing dead fish in the harbor which is home to stingrays, hammerhead sharks and turtles and an occasional visit from monk seals. "There's just no question we don't want any type of discharges that would impact the marine life," said Barclay. The cloudy substance that blanketed the harbor made its way to the ocean where unsuspecting surfers, fishermen and divers had already started their day. "We noticed the signs when we came in," said surfer Kraig Kina. "We need to know what it is, would be nice so it's safe for the people surf and fish yeah," added surfer Eddie Amaral. "Sample it and get to the bottom of it you know the deal. It shouldn't be too hard," said St. Romain. The state Department of Health has gathered samples of the water emptying into Kewalo Basin and determined that it is fresh water. State officials believe the water is mixing with silt and coral which is producing the white color. The source still remains a mystery. "I do want it stopped," said Barclay. "It impacts our harbor, it impacts the quality of the boating experience, impacts the surfers and all the other ocean recreational users." - KHON2.
WATCH: Mysterious plume in the Kewalo Basin.



FIRE IN THE SKY: Green Object Reported in the Sky Over Newfoundland?!

Facebook and Twitter social media sites on the northeast Avalon were busy with reports of an unidentified, green object falling in the sky over Conception Bay South Wednesday night.

There have been reports that a bright green object was seen in the sky from Conception bay South,
eastern Newfoundland. This image wasn't taken recently it is for story illustration purposes only.
"It was turquoise in colour and was rounded on the bottom and tapered to a point on top. It looked big, but it was hard to tell how far away it was. It was moving extremely fast toward the ground," said a Facebook status update from the St. John's area. "I've read about a couple of natural phenomena now that could explain it ... something called a green fireball and a meteor - which can apparently be blue, white or green," said another one.  No one has reported an alien abduction yet ... but the reports on Twitter and Facebook weren't isolated to eastern Newfoundland. People from many parts of the northeastern U.S. also posted reports on astronomy internet forums all evening claiming they saw a green light in the sky.

"Almost certainly it was what we call a bolide, which is a very bright, sporadic meteor much brighter than the run of the mill meteor. These things can rival the brightness of the full moon," said Chris Stevenson of the Royal Astronomical Society of Newfoundland and Labrador. "One tip off - despite the fact that green is our favourite alien colour - is that this was reported as blue/green." Stevenson said most meteors are basically large rocks the size of a baseball or maybe as large as a basketball. He said when they hit the Earth's atmosphere at several tens of kilometres per second they burn up very fiercely and very brightly.  He said the sightings Wednesday appear to be concentrated in the northeast U.S., Quebec and Ontario and Newfoundland.  "It's not an airplane, they move more slowing," said Stevenson. He also ruled out extraterrestrials. "Definitely not aliens unless they are hardy little buggers that can survive very ferocious temperatures," said Stevenson.CBC.

STORM ALERT: Tropical Cyclone Irina Set to Hit Swaziland Region This Weekend - Warnings Issued; Heavy Rains, Strong Winds, Mudslides and Widespread Flooding Expected!

The nation is warned that a tropical cyclone called Irina is expected to hit Swaziland this weekend.Cyclone Irina is feared to be far worse than Cyclone Domoina (Zamcolo) which hit the kingdom in 1984 and caused severe flooding and mudslides that destroyed property and lives.

Unlike the recent Cyclone Dando which came close to the kingdom before changing direction, Irina is expected to drift directly over the country over the course of three-four days. This means it will begin tomorrow and run up to Tuesday. The Swaziland Meteorological Department has in fact issued a warning that the new cyclone will be characterised by heavy rains expected to last no-less than three days and also strong winds travelling at a speed of 80km/h or slightly above. "Cyclone Irina originates from the north eastern sea part of Madagascar and is expected to be drawn into the Mozambican Channel where it is expected to gather momentum and size because of the warm current there. It will then travel to Mozambique down to the South Coast and eventually Swaziland," explained Dumsani Sithole, Senior Met Officer.
He added that indeed this cyclone was most likely to surpass the intensity of Domoina. From tomorrow, rainfall in some areas of the country is expected to rise to well over 100 millilitres. Phephisa Sihlongonyane, another Senior Met Officer, said destruction associated with natural disasters like big cyclones would most likely be felt. These include mudslides, floods, breaking of dams, fallen trees and so on. Winds of 80km/h or more are dangerous. A vehicle travelling at this speed could cause serious injuries if it knocked a human being. Sihlongonyane also revealed that the South African Weather Service has also released a national warning about Cyclone Irina. Heavy rains in that country are expected to start over the Lowveld areas of Mpumalanga and also Northern KwaZulu-Natal. - Times of Swaziland.


FUK-U-SHIMA: Japan's Nuclear Dead Zone Spreading Far And Wide - Fish Contaminated with Fukushima Radiation Detected in Sri Lanka!

The Atomic Energy Authority (AEA) has detected fish consignments imported to Sri Lanka that were contaminated from radio active substances in the seas following the Fukushima nuclear catastrophe, AEA chairman Dr Ranjith Jayawardene said.

He told the Daily News that the AEA had been checking all imported fish consignments to Sri Lanka since the Fukushima incident to ensure these were safe for human consumption. He noted that the AEA discovered salmon and other fish consignments which were slightly contaminated by radioactive substances last November and also last week during checks. The container load imported in November was released after a laboratory test to ensure that the level of radioactive substances is harmless for human consumption. This load included fish from the seas off China. The fish consignment imported to the country last week has been retained by the Customs until a special laboratory test. The chairman said that the results of this test would be released within two days.

A special programmer to monitor radioactive substances in the seas off Sri Lanka has been commenced with the aid of the International Atomic Energy Authority (IAEA), Dr Jayawardene said. He said that the programmer's intention is to analyze the impact on Sri Lankan seas from the radioactive leakage of the Kagoshima nuclear power plant last year. Dr Jayawardene noted that during the leakage, radioactive contaminated water mixed with sea water contaminated the marine environment, posing a threat to aquatic life. He noted that the AEA informed the IAEA about these incidents.

The IAEA had proposed to initiate a special programmer in the seas off 17 IAEA member states of the Asian Pacific region to monitor radioactive substances in sea water taking these facts into consideration. The chairman said that the marine samples collected from 10 selected places within a one km distance from the shore would be checked for radioactive substances, specially for cesium 137. The programmer would be continued for the next two years. Australian expert Ronald Szymborska of the IAEA arrived in Sri Lanka last week to provide guidance for this programmer. A special seminar was held for local experts in universities and NARA in this regard on Monday. - Sri Lanka Daily News.

DELUGE: Widespread Flooding in Jakarta - Hundreds of Homes Submerged in Pondokpinang; Third Time Since January!

Besides causing settlement in West Jakarta (Sukabumiselatan Urban Village) flooded, Pesanggrahan River overflows also inundated hundreds of houses in South Jakarta or exactly on Jl. Kebon Baru, RT 14-17, RW 05, Pondokpinang Urban Village, Kebayoranlama Sub-District, Thursday (3/1).

“This flood is the third time happened since last January. Water rose to 100 centimeters last night. But now, our settlement is only inundated with water height 50 centimeters. Hundreds of houses are inundated,” stated Purdjianto, resident RT 15/05 who is also member of Pondokpinang Urban Village Residents Forum (LMK). According to him, urban village officials have distributed logistic aid to residents. “In flood posts there are 50 kilograms of rice, mineral water, and instant noodles for flood victims,” he added. Despite the logistic aid distributed, residents are now worrying there would be landslide occurred on the riverside. “We afraid the land cliff would collapse, especially since there are many big trees there.

But because that area is included in Bintaro Urban Village, we have reported to officials there,” told Purdjianto. Meanwhile, Pondokpinang Urban Village Deputy Chief Hendi Nopriyandi stated has prepared two flood posts to anticipate flood victim evacuees. “Two flood posts have been built, where one of them is located in RW 05 which is the most affected by flood area. Logistic aid has also prepared in each post. But, public kitchen is not yet built, unless there are evacuees,” he explained. Moreover he added that in his area there are five RWs which prone to flood. Those RWs are RW 8, 4, 5, 11, and 12. “We hope government’s plan to normalize Pesanggrahan River can be realized soon so there will be no more flood victim in Pondokpinang,” expressed Hendi. - Berita Jakarta.
Most houses on Earth Housing Permai Kasai, Kasai Korong, Kanagarian Kasang, District of Batang Anai, Padangpariaman regency, West Sumatra, on Thursday (03/01/2012) still flooded. That followed a flood of water that hit hundreds of homes on the estate since the night before. On Thursday morning a number of people looking to clean house and furnishings that were previously soaked in the flood. But some residents fear mas ih subsequent flooding will occur again given the rain that still continued to fall. Teaching and learning activities in one primary school in the settlement area that does not appear to be held. Because our primary schools also appears to be still flooded to the limit of the ankle. - Kompas. [Translated]



DOOMSDAY 2012: Kyrgyzstan Expecting Earthquakes, Landslides, Avalanches, Mud and Floods in 2012?!

In Kyrgyzstan, activation of seismic, landslide, avalanching, mud flows and flood processes is expected in 2012. Kyrgyz Minister of Emergency Situations Kubatbek Boronov said at today's conference on summarizing the results of the civil protection system performance.

According to him, last year they conducted 1, 401 thousand examinations of dangerous natural processes. "This is 19 percent more than in 2010. The Department of Emergency Monitoring and Forecasting annually publishes information on forecasts to prevent emergency situations and take top-priority measures," Kubatbek Boronov said. - 24 News Agency.