Tuesday, August 20, 2013

GLOBAL VOLCANISM: The Global Volcano Report For August 20, 2013 - Submarine Eruption And Increased Seismic Activity At Indonesia's Iliwerung Volcano Forces Authorities To Raise Alert Level; And High Levels Of Hydrothermal Activity Results In Massive Explosion At New Zealand's White Island Volcano!

August 20, 2013 - WORLDWIDE VOLCANOES - The following constitutes the new activity, unrest and ongoing reports of volcanoes across the globe.

Gunung Hobal (Iliwerung volcano, Lomblen Island, Indonesia): A submarine eruption has likely occurred this morning in Indonesia. VSI raised the alert level of Iliwerung volcano from 1 (normal) to 2 (watch) following increased seismic and visual activity from an underwater flank vent called Gunung Hobal.

Iliwerung volcano forms a peninsula on the south coast of Lembata (Lomblen) Island (East Indonesia).

Mount Hobal (Gunung Hobal) is a submarine flank vent of Iliwerung located about 800 m from the coast. It has had several historic eruptions during which several temporary islands were formed.

The latest bulletin of VSI describes that the water around Hobal has recently shown significant color changes to yellow, intense bubbling and white steam plumes rising up to about 1000-2000 m from 7:14 local time this morning. Half an hour later, from 7:46 am, glow even began to be visible.

Strangely, no plume or other strong evidence of an eruption have been available so far from satellite data, except tiny spots visible on the latest images of the area which could be floating pumice (s. Culture Volcan's blog post)

It appears that the eruptive phase (if any) lasted only shortly, which could explain the absence of a clearly visible plume on satellite data.

VSI points out that there is an elevated risk of tsunamis associated with potential more eruptive activity, and recommends not to approach the coast within 30 m from the sea.

The last recorded eruptions of Gunung Hobal were in 1973-74 and between 17-18 August 1983.

White Island (New Zealand): A small phreatic or hydrothermal eruption occurred at in the active crater earlier today (10:23 on Tuesday 20 August 2013 NZ local time). The explosion lasted for about 10 minutes and produced a steam plume mixed with small amounts of ash that rose about 4 km a.s.l.

The activity at White Island has now returned to levels of high hydrothermal activity as before this morning's eruption... [read more]

Complete Earthquake list (worldwide) for August 20, 2013.

- Volcano Discovery.

PLANETARY TREMORS: Minor 3.6 Earthquake Rattles Puget Sound, On The Kitsap Peninsula, Washington - Seismologist Says The Tremor Raises The Chance Of Larger Earthquake Within The Next 48 Hours On The Tacoma Fault!

August 20, 2013 - UNITED STATES - A small earthquake west of Gig Harbor before noon Tuesday was felt by scattered residents across South Kitsap and northern Pierce County.

USGS earthquake location.

The earthquake, recorded at a 3.6 magnitude, occurred at 11:41 a.m., according to the Pacific Northwest Seismic Network at the University of Washington. The epicenter was just west of Vaughn on the Key Peninsula, across Henderson Bay from Cutts Island State Park. The depth was initially reported as 3.5 miles, then updated to 7.3 miles.

The Pierce County sheriff's office says there are no reports of damage from a 3.6 magnitude earthquake that shook the Gig Harbor area.

USGS earthquake shakemap intensity.

People from Port Orchard to Burley in South Kitsap reported the quake on the Kitsap Sun’s Facebook page, along with residents of Gig Harbor and the Key Peninsula.

“It was a nice little quake for feeling,” said Bill Steele a seismologist at the UW’s Seismology Lab. “We’re not surprised that it was felt over that area.”

The earthquake is considered a shallow quake, being less than 10 miles deep, he said. Had it been deeper, it might not have been felt across such a broad area.

The small earthquake is “not inconsistent” with a quake on the Tacoma fault, Steele said. The Tacoma fault has been associated with massive earthquakes in the distant past.

USGS earthquake shakemap intensity.

The 3.6-magnitude earthquake raises the chance that smaller aftershocks will follow, possible in the range of a magnitude 2, he said. The risk of a larger earthquake also increases, but only slightly, for about the next 48 hours, then the risk will return to background levels for the region.

Any earthquake serves as a reminder that Puget Sound lies in earthquake country, Steele said, and large earthquakes could occur anytime. People should be prepared to be without services — such as power, water and transportation — for at least five days. - Kitsap Sun.


GLOBAL VOLCANISM: "We Had Never Seen Anything Like It" - Shocked Oceanographers Discover Atlantic Ocean Floor Unexpectedly Pumping Iron Cloud Plume!

August 20, 2013 - ATLANTIC OCEAN - Previously, oceanographers thought the Atlantic Ocean seafloor didn’t spit out as much iron as other regions. However, a recently discovered plume of iron billowing from the depth of the Atlantic Ocean suggests the seafloor may be pumping iron like a young Arnold Schwarzenegger.

The oceanic iron cloud spreads for more than 1,000 kilometers (621 miles) across the Atlantic from west of Angola, Africa, to northeast of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The iron-rich waters flow 1,500 to 3,500 meters (4,921 – 11,482 feet) beneath the surface of the ocean. The complete extent and shape of the iron plume remains to be discovered.

“We had never seen anything like it,” said Mak Saito, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute scientist and lead author of the study, in a press release. “We were sort of shocked—there’s this huge bull’s-eye right in the middle of the South Atlantic Ocean. We didn’t quite know what to do with it, because it went contrary to a lot of our expectations.”

Cracks in the Earth crust, or hydrothermal vents, on the ocean floor released the iron. However, the type of vent came as a surprise to the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute and University of Liverpool oceanographers who discovered it.

A long ridge splits the Atlantic Ocean as geological forces gradually force the ocean wider. The slow-spreading Atlantic ridge was thought to produce less iron and other chemicals than vents in regions with speedier splits, like the ridge in the eastern Pacific.

“This study and other studies like it are going to force the scientific community to reevaluate how much iron is really being contributed by hydrothermal vents and to increase those estimates, and that has implications for not only iron geochemistry but a number of other disciplines as well,” said Saito.

The Atlantic Ocean iron plume may provide a smorgasbord for oceanic phytoplankton, the tiny, plant-like organisms that form the base of many marine food webs.

WATCH: Underwater Volcano Caught On Video.

Those phytoplankton provide food for fish and whales. The plankton also suck in large amounts of carbon dioxide. When the plankton die they can carry that carbon with them to bottom of the ocean. - Discovery News.

MASS FISH DIE-OFF: Thousands Of Fish Found Dead In Bayou Casotte, Mississippi?!

August 20, 2013 - UNITED STATES - Thousands of fish are dead in Bayou Casotte forcing the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality to close the bayou and part of the Mississippi Sound. MDEQ is also advising people to not eat any seafood from the area until further notice.

Mississippi Phosphates said a release of water from the plant led to the fish kill.

Owner of CC's Bait Shop Charles Williamson Jr. said, "If I continue taking hits like that, I can't stay in business."

He said every time the water is contaminated, his business suffers. This time Williamson lost 65 pounds of shrimp.

"It will take me about a week to get my stock back up because we haven't been catching a lot of shrimp," Williamson said. "So all that shrimp I had was four days worth of work. That's four days of burning diesel, four days paying help."

Five months ago another fish kill forced MDEQ to again close the boat ramps, causing him to lose about $5,000 in bait and business.

Statement of Richard Johnson, VP of Operations, MS Phosphates Corp.

"This weekend's major rainfall resulted in Mississippi Phosphates implementing established procedures for emergency discharge of process water into Bayou Casotte.

Mississippi Phosphates followed Federal and State regulations, promptly notifying the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality of its intent to implement a controlled release to avoid the risk of a larger uncontrolled release.

Already this year, the Pascagoula plant has received 62.8 inches of rain compared to an annual average rainfall of approximately 64 inches. With its water storage system already at or near capacity, the estimated 8 inches of additional rain from weekend storms exceeded existing storage capacity.

The emergency discharge lasted less than 24 hours, ending at 8 a.m. on Monday, August 19th.

A fish kill potentially related to the discharge was discovered in Bayou Casotte. The company is actively recovering the fish for regulatory reporting and disposal. Mississippi Phosphates is cooperating with regulatory officials and the situation remains closely monitored. At this time, we have no further information to report."

"It has just been a hard, uphill battle," Williamson said.

He is not the only one frustrated.

"Financially, I am at a loss," commercial crabber Brandon Pierpont said. "It is pushing all the crab out into the channel and everything that can get out is trying to. And what's left in here, like I said, I'm real low on numbers and had a lot of dead loss."

"For years, they say vegetation on the bank, depletion of the oxygen in the water. But look, you can only fool people so many times. It just continues to happen, so something needs to be done about it," fisherman Fred Waters said.

Mississippi Phosphates said the heavy rain Sunday forced the company to do an emergency discharge of processing water into Bayou Casotte to avoid an even larger uncontrolled release.

Williamson said the company should at least give some notice to those who make a living off the bayou.

WATCH: Thousands of dead fish floating in Pascagoula.

"They need to give me a call, so I can shut off all my pumps and save the water I got and continue selling my live bait. That would be the neighborly thing to do," Williamson said.

Mississippi Phosphates has begun to pick up the fish. Read the full statement from Richard Johnson, VP of Operations at Mississippi Phosphates Corporation: http://bit.ly/13NsNrf. - WLOX13.

PLAGUES & PESTILENCES: Lyme Disease Is MUCH MORE Common Than Previously Known - Rare (non-Lyme) Infection Caused By Bacteria Found In Deer Ticks; Over 300,000 Americans Are Getting Lyme Disease Every Year!

August 20, 2013 - UNITED STATES - Lyme Disease, spread by deer ticks, is much more common than we thought. About 30,000 cases are reported each year, but on Monday, the Centers for Disease Control said the real number of cases is more like 300,000.

In June 2011, 89-year-old Harry Woske got sick from what seemed to be a summertime flu. The avid gardener suspected Lyme disease when his symptoms persisted.

Woske says he felt "feverish and a little chilly, and achy, and weaker."

"I almost collapsed and was admitted to the hospital," he says.

Dr. Joseph Gugliotta of Hunterdon Medical Center diagnosed Woske -- not with Lyme, but with borrelia miyamotoi. The infection is so rare, his was just the second documented case in the United States. It is caused by a type of bacteria found in the deer tick, the same tick that transmits Lyme disease and several other illnesses.

WATCH: Rare (non-Lyme) infection caused by bacteria found in deer ticks.

"There were patients, actually, that came up negative on all the testing, including Lyme disease," Gugliotta says. "And we were sure they had something, but we couldn't prove what they had."

The bacteria may have caused infection in recent years without being recognized. Researchers have found them in two percent of deer ticks. Lyme is present in 20 percent.

Dr. Gary Wormser of New York Medical College was part of a team that found miyamotoi in 18 stored blood samples from patients with and without symptoms.

"What we still need to learn is how frequently is it a cause of human infection, what are the symptoms and signs," Wormser says.

WATCH: What you need to know about ticks.

Wormser says that when a patient comes in with a fever over the summer, a doctor should consider whether it could be a case of the new disease.

"Summertime febrile illnesses, you should think about tick-borne diseases, if there is tick exposure," he says, adding a tick doesn't need to be visible.

"All we care about is tick exposure," he says. "In the majority of the time where you have tick-borne infection, you don't recall a tick bite."

Today's estimate
is so much higher than previous official numbers because most cases go unreported. But the CDC said there has also been a real increase in Lyme cases, likely more than tripling over the past 20 years, as the ticks spread to new areas. - CBS News.

Deadly Tick Virus Eyed In Death of NY Teen Who Collapsed In Yard.
A New York teenager who collapsed in his yard and later died may have been bitten by a tick carrying a deadly disease, his family says.

Seventeen-year-old Joseph Elone of Poughkeepsie, an honor roll student who wanted to become an environmental engineer, died shortly after midnight Aug. 5, according to his family.

"Joe was full of life, gifted in so many things," said grieving father Benedict Elone.

Elone had a minor cough, fatigue and a headache for about two weeks before his death, but his family said it seemed like a summer cold.

WATCH: Joseph Elone's family says the Hudson Valley teen was sick for about two weeks before he suddenly collapsed and died.

And then, Elone watched his son collapse in front of their home on the evening of Aug. 4. He wasn't breathing, and no one knew how sick he was. His father rushed to him in the yard.

"I hugged my son, I called him. He couldn't even answer," Benedict Elone said.

Joseph was taken to Vassar Brothers Medical Center, where he later died.

Dutchess County officials, citing initial testing, believe Elone may have been bitten by a tick infected with Powassan encephalitis. The virus is untreatable and can be transmitted by a tick bite in a matter of minutes.

A recent study by the journal Parasites & Vectors shows 6 percent of ticks in the Hudson Valley carry a variant of the virus, according to The Poughkeepsie Journal. Researchers say the number is low compared to Lyme disease carriers, but it's also higher than expected.

"There are no diagnostic tests for the disease, and no treatments that are effective," said Dr. David Roth, co-chair of the Tick-Borne Disease Alliance.

Joseph Elone, a talented student and musician, was getting ready for his senior year of high school, with plans to apply early decision to Brown University.

"He's a kid who knew who he was," said Benedict Elone. "He had all kinds of ambition. Teachers couldn't stop speaking well of him."

"I just miss my son," he said in tears. "I just miss my son. I just miss my son." - NBC New York.

EXTREME WEATHER ANOMALIES: Rare Monster Tornado Hits Guangzhou, China - Storms Leave Thousands Homeless!

August 20, 2013 - CHINA - At least 22 people were killed in Guangdong Province and 7 are missing due to the floods that struck the province in the aftermath of Typhoon Utor, BBC News reports.

Over 200 have been killed nationwide after Liaoning, Jilin and Heilongjiang were also hit with floods.

According to GD Chinanews, at least 4.9 billion yuan worth of damage has been done in the province, over 51,000 people have been forced to evacuate their homes, and 19,000 homes have been destroyed. - Nan Fang. [Edited for clarity]

WATCH: Tornado hits Guangzhou village.

WAR ON NATURE: Mass Fish Die-Off - MILLIONS Of Fish Found Dead "Poisoned" In Farms In Quanzhou, China?!

August 20, 2013 - CHINA - August 16 morning, Quanzhou Tong Jian Fang Tangxiang a nearly 50 acres of fish ponds have been poisoned, murdered in cold blood hundreds of million fry turned belly, floating in the water, looks vast expanse. At present, the police have set up a special Quanzhou County, to investigate the case.

At 11:00 on August 17, southern China Morning Post reporter went to Quanzhou Tong Fong Lye Tangxiang incident ponds and saw black water, dead fish to the shore by the wind, the vast expanse. A man who is dead fish salvage, and then transported to a nearby landfill space digging.

South China Morning Post reporter saw the dead fish species are carp, grass carp and bullhead, as well as a small number of dead fish washed ashore last-ditch struggle. Farmers Jo said, on August 16 morning, he saw the fish ponds where the fish in the water spin scurrying to see that the fish are poisoned. To noon, the entire pond surface are dead.

He immediately alarms, Quanzhou Public Security Bureau of Criminal Investigation Brigade and soap Tong police station are sent to the scene to investigate. To 16 at night, almost all the dead over the entire pond, they are busy salvaging dead fish one day landfill. The pond area of ​​about 50 acres, has invested hundreds of million fry a loss of $ 20 million.

Farmers Tang Jiusheng introduction, three of them in partnership with fish, this spring to buy hundreds of million fry into a fish pond, ready to raise a bigger fish and then put into the pond below, next year the Dragon Boat Festival and Mid-Autumn Festival section can be sold for fish. Who knows now that the tragic death of hundreds of million fry, they estimated poisoner fully understand the situation they fish.

Quanzhou Public Security Bureau deputy director Zhou Chengyu, after receiving the report, the Public Security Bureau of Criminal Investigation Brigade and soap Quanzhou Tong police station immediately sent to the scene to investigate the cause was initially considered dead fish poisoning caused. They have sent water samples and dead fish Guilin relevant departments detection. - China News. [Translated]

MASS FISH DIE-OFF: Thousands Of Fish Found Dead In Gudme Lake, Denmark?!

August 20, 2013 - DENMARK - A cold-blooded massacre in the animal world has unfolded in Gudme Lake.

Gudme Lake is green with algae and dead fish lies along the edge of the polluted lake.
Photo: Agnes Finn Mann Scheel

In the water's edge lies dead fish neatly in straight rows with open mouths, big, surprised eyes and bloated bellies.

The waves get fiskekadaverne to rock from side to side while each zombie similar shells splash with their fins in a last attempt to survive. It should prove unsuccessful.

The fish have been asphyxiated in a swamp of algae.

The algae is due to summer heat and windless conditions have made the nutrient-rich lake completely green and depleted oxygen.

If the lake is cleaned, there is in principle not much to compete against fish death to come, and something similar could happen in such Ollerup and Soerup Lake. - FYENS. [Translated]

DELUGE: Precursors To A Global Coastal Event - Flooding Submerges More Than Half Of Manila In The Philippines; 8 Dead; Thousands Evacuated; 600,000 Affected; Authorities Bracing For More Chaos In Outlying Provinces!

August 20, 2013 - PHILIPPINES - Flooding caused by some of the Philippines' heaviest rains that submerged more than half the capital began receding Tuesday, but authorities evacuated thousands of residents along Manila's overflowing rivers and braced for more chaos in outlying provinces.

A woman is carried by a man through floodwaters on Aug. 20, 2013 in Makati City south of Manila, Philippines.
(Dondi Tawatao/Getty Images)

At least eight people have died, including four who drowned north of Manila. The dead included a 5-year-old boy whose house was hit by a concrete wall that collapsed, and a 3-year-old boy who fell into a swollen river in Mariveles town in Bataan province. Four people are missing.
Throughout the sprawling, low-lying capital region of 12 million people, offices, banks and schools were closed and most roads were impassable. People stumbled through waist- or neck-deep waters, holding on to ropes strung from flooded houses.

More than 200 evacuation centers were opened in Manila and surrounding provinces, filled with tens of thousands of people, Social Welfare Secretary Corazon Soliman said. Overall, more than 600,000 people have been affected by the floods.

"I had to wade through a waist-deep flood," said Esteban Gabin, a 45-year-old driver, who was plotting the best route to check on his family in Pampanga province, northwest of Manila. "But I may have to swim to reach my home because we live near the Pampanga River, and the flood there could reach up to neck deep."

The flooding that covered half of the capital receded to 20 percent, concentrated on Marikina and Paranaque cities, said Eduardo del Rosario, head of the national disaster council.

In Marikina, where the river breached its banks, authorities started evacuating some 12,000 people to schools and gymnasiums that were turned into emergency shelters.

A crowd watches as residents cross a flooded street to evacuate to higher grounds in Marikina city,
east of Manila, Philippines on Aug. 20, 2013. (AP Photo/Aaron Favila)

Makeshift rafts ferry office workers and pedestrians through floodwaters on August 20, 2013 in Makati City
south of Manila, Philippines. (Dondi Tawatao/Getty Images)

Pedicabs and makeshift rafts ferry office workers and pedestrians through floodwaters on Aug. 20, 2013 in Makati City south of Manila, Philippines. (Dondi Tawatao/Getty Images)

City rescue teams carry a raft through floodwaters in Makati on Aug. 20, 2013 south of Manila, Philippines.
(Dondi Tawatao/Getty Images)

As the weather gradually improved in Manila, the concern shifted to provinces outside the capital that were expected to be drenched as the monsoon travels north.

In Pampanga's rice-producing town of Minalin, more than 200 villagers fled after water from a swollen river spilled over a dike and began flooding communities amid pounding rain. Villagers scrambled to lay sandbags on the dike and in front of their houses, said Office of Civil Defense officer Nigel Lontoc.

"The villagers are afraid that the dike may collapse any time," Lontoc said by phone.

About 200 members of the Aeta tribe living near the foot of Mount Pinatubo left their homes for fear of being swept away by a raging river near Botolan township in Zambales province, said Elsa Novo, a leader of an Aeta federation in the province. She said other family members stayed behind to watch their property.

Evacuations were also under way around the La Mesa dam, north of Manila, which began overflowing. The waters from the dam flow into the Tullahan River, which passes through some of the densely populated areas of the capital.

The flooding followed two nights of heavy monsoon rains enhanced by Tropical Storm Trami. The storm hovered over the North Philippine Sea and drenched the main northern island of Luzon with up to 30 millimeters (just over an inch) of rain per hour. It was forecast to move away from the Philippines toward Taiwan on Wednesday.

Residents walk through a flooded street in Manila on Aug. 20, 2013. (Noel Celis/AFP/Getty Images)

Filipinos wade through a flooded street at the financial district of Makati, south of Manila, Philippines
on Tuesday, Aug. 20, 2013. (AP Photo/Aaron Favila)

A resident falls as he tries to fix the roof of his flooded home at Binakayan township, Cavite province,
south of Manila, Philippines on Monday, Aug. 19, 2013. (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)

A resident carries a plastic of rice as she wades through a flooded street in Binakayan township, Cavite province,
south of Manila, Philippines on Monday, Aug. 19, 2013. (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)

In many coastal towns along swollen Lake Laguna, near Manila, and in food-growing riverside provinces, residents were trapped on rooftops, waded through the streets or drifted on makeshift rafts. Many chose to stay close to their homes for fear they would be looted if they left.

Flooding has become more frequent in Manila because of deforestation of mountains, clogged waterways and canals where large squatter communities live, and poor urban planning.

"We're surprised by the rainfall. Some areas experienced record levels," said Science Secretary Mario Montejo.

WATCH: Local news coverage of the floods.

According to an assessment from the Department of Science and Technology, rainfall reached 600 mm (23 1/2 inches) in and around Manila Bay on Sunday alone - more than a month's worth of rain in a day. That's compared to the disastrous 2009 Typhoon Ketsana, the strongest to hit Manila in modern history, when 455 mm of rain fell in 24 hours.

Many domestic and international flights at Ninoy Aquino International Airport were canceled. Key roads leading to the airport were flooded and passengers and crew were delayed.The Philippine archipelago is among the most battered by storms in the world. About 20 tropical cyclones hit the country every year. - TWC.

EXTREME WEATHER: Rare Tornado Rips Through Aalen, Germany - Destroys Church Campsite, Injures 27 Including 16 Children; 200,000 Euro In Damages!

August 20, 2013 - GERMANY - A tornado tore through a campsite belonging to a church in southern German on Monday afternoon, injuring 27 people, including 16 children aged between 10 and 13 years old.

Triggered by unusually humid weather, the tornado hit the campsite in the Aalen area in the state of Baden-W├╝rttemberg. It ripped up two large tents belonging to a local diocese, and damaged eight others. Roofs came off five buildings and trees were uprooted.

There were around 100 children and adults at the campsite, 27 of whom were injured badly enough to need medical help.

One 10-year-old girl had such bad back injuries that she was taken to a Stuttgart hospital by air ambulance. Five others, including three supervising adults, also sustained more serious injuries – mostly broken arms.

WATCH: Tornado devastated camp near Aalen - 27 Injured.

The tornado caused an estimated €200,000 of damage to the site. Those who were not physically injured were looked after in a local sports hall, where they were treated for shock.  - The Local.

MASS FISH DIE-OFF: "Environmental Tragedy" - Thousands Of Fish Killed By Collapse Of Mining Waste In Ecuador!

August 20, 2013 - ECUADOR - A Shumiral mining tailings, Ecuador, collapsed this week sending all waste to waters of Chico River, which joins the course of Gala, Tenguel and Pagua, which flow into the shrimp and mangroves.

Shumiral mine disaster, Ecuador (Mario Rene Pinto Sangoquiza via Facebook).

The president of the Vestry of Tenguel, Julio Simbala warned on August 15 that in his jurisdiction were thousands of dead fish, as The Time .

The facts involve the mining Portugalia, head to Barranco Colorado Duck in Shumiral, Camilo Ponce Enriquez Canton, Azuay Province.
Furthermore, the Ministry is investigating the responsibility of new discharges upstream of the site of the tragedy. The collapse of a wall of the pool was recorded about 18:00 on Tuesday August 13. Is an "environmental tragedy" said Patricio Sanchez, mayor of Ponce Enriquez, noting that over 13 hectares is evidence the mud swept away everything in its path and affected villages using water for their activities, reported Ecuavisa .

The Ministry Ambienta l told the inhabitants, including the communities of San Rafael, Parish Tenguel, Guayas Province, "to take the necessary precautions such as avoiding the use of river water for agriculture and human consumption, given that do not know the content of it, "he said in a statement.

The Environmental Management Unit of the Municipality of Ponce Enriquez, warned the general public not to use the water of the rivers mentioned "under any circumstances", La Hora.

The Ministry indicated that water samples were taken "in some sectors of the Chico River in order to know which components are part of tailings discharged into the river" to determine the extent of contamination and provenance.

Sustained swimming bags

"The collapse of the side wall of the pool meant that the material is the Chico River, spreading downstream. One of the immediate actions taken was divert the river to prevent the material from being dragged cyanide allegedly by it" informed the Ministry of Environment, and warned that it was ordered to build a dam between the land affected and it will be in front.

Alexandre Benposta, Portugalia shareholder, told the media that this mineral waste spill is a "sabotage" reported Ecuavisa.

The Director of Environment of Azuay, were Torrachi, told The Hour, which handles this "hypothesis of sabotage," but that is something that is going to investigate. "Turn explained that by the time the grant activities mining were suspended.

In response, President of the Vestry of Tenguel, Julio Simbala, said the average Ecuadorian, who does not believe that the spill was an alleged sabotage and presumes the concessionaire, "because according to the leader who inspected the area of the collapse, the pool was built anti technically, since these residues were supported by sacks ".

Witnesses reported that upstream of the spill area, this water down showing a silver color. To rule out that the companies in the Cold Creek and Bella Gal, took the affectation to empty your waste pits until late afternoon yesterday, were inspected. - La Gran Epoca. [Translated]

GREAT DELUGE: Precursors To A Global Coastal Event - More Than 200 Dead Or Missing In China; Heavy Rains From Typhoon Utor Trigger Landslides, Burying Homes And Vehicles In The WORST FLOODING IN 50 YEARS!

August 20, 2013 - CHINA - Heavy rains brought by a typhoon triggered landslides in southern China that buried homes and vehicles and killed at least 15 people, as the number of dead or missing from recent flooding in the country surged past 200.

The death toll from devastating floods at opposite ends of China following torrential rains and the aftermath of a typhoon has risen to more than 200, the government and media said Tuesday.  Reuters

Nine people were reported killed in Hunan province and six in Guangxi, where vehicles were covered in mud and rocks along a mountain highway, local flood control offices said.

WATCH: Scores killed in China floods, over 500,000 evacuated.

The deaths come after three people died Sunday in a landslide near the Guangxi city of Wuzhou.

Rains brought by last week’s Typhoon Utor have caused severe flooding across Hunan, Guangxi and neighboring Guangdong province. In Guangdong, 22 people have died and eight were missing in flooding since Friday.

Streets, like this one in southern China, were inundated with water.  Reuters

In this photo taken Sunday, Aug. 18, 2013, Chinese paramilitary police men evacuate residents through
flood waters from typhoon Utor in Huaiji in south China’s Guangdong province. Rains brought by
last week’s Typhoon Utor have caused severe flooding across Guangxi and
neighboring Guangdong province. AP

Rescue workers evacuate residents from a flooded area after heavy rainfall, brought by Typhoon Utor,
hit Qingyuan, Guangdong province.  Reuters.

Transport links in the densely populated province were severely hit, affecting tens of
thousands of travellers. Reuters.

Some services from Guangzhou railway station, Guangdong's most important transport hub, had
been suspended due to rain and landslides. Reuters

Flooding in the northeast, which has been described as the worst there in decades. More than 787,000
hectares of farmland in the region, a major grain growing area, were flooded and pictures
showed roads in many urban areas looking more like rivers. AP

Flooding hits China every summer, but there has been more destruction this year. Reuters

By Tuesday morning, a total of 105 people were reported dead and 115 missing in the extreme south and northeast.

WATCH: 43 Reservoirs Exceed Warning Levels In NE China Floods .

WATCH: Typhoon Utor Hits China City With Worst Flooding in 50 Years.

WATCH: Floods kills dozens in opposite corners of China.

In the deadliest incident, torrential rains over the last week caused the Nei River in northeastern Liaoning province to overflow near the city of Fushun, sweeping away homes, roads and utilities and leaving 54 people dead and 97 missing.

Flooding hits China each summer, but heavy rains have brought greater than usual levels of destruction in some areas. - Inquirer.

SOLAR WATCH: Fire In The Sky And The Electric Universe - Sundiving Comet And Spectacular Coronal Mass Ejection!

August 20, 2013 - SUN - During the late hours of August 20th, an unnamed comet from the outer solar system dove into the sun and disintegrated.

A spectacular far-side Coronal Mass Ejection (CME) was associated with the death plunge recorded by coronagraphs on board the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO).

The tadpole-shaped comet vaporizing furiously as it approaches the sun. It is probably too small to survive closest approach, but we won't know for sure until the encounter actually happens later.

The comet appears to be approximately 30-50 kilometers wide and is expected to reach speeds of at least 500 km/s when it reaches its demise, vaporized by the sun.

A snapshot of the new bright Kreutz comet captured by the SOHO/LASCO C3 coronagraph.
This image was created and shared by Karl Battams, @SungrazingComet.

The comet currently has a magnitude around 6 and may reach 0 or even -1. This is not another Comet Lovejoy but it could be exciting in SDO imagery like the first comet seen by SDO, C/2011 N3 (SOHO).

The comet appears to be a member of the Kreutz family. Kreutz sungrazers are fragments from the breakup of a single giant comet many centuries ago.

Animation of a bright Kreutz comet captured by the SOHO/LASCO C3 coronagraph.

They get their name from 19th century German astronomer Heinrich Kreutz, who studied them in detail.

Several Kreutz fragments pass by the sun and disintegrate every day. Most, measuring less than a few meters across, are too small to see, but occasionally a bigger fragment like this one attracts attention.

WATCH: Sundiving Comet and CME.

SOURCES: Solar Watcher | Astro Watch.

GLOBAL VOLCANISM: White Island Volcanic Eruption Sparks Heightened Alert - Sends Plume Of Steam And Ash About 4 Kilometres Into The New Zealand Air!

August 20, 2013 - NEW ZEALAND - White Island volcano erupted this morning sending a plume of steam and ash about four kilometres into the air.

White Island erupts. Source: supplied by Jennifer and Alex Simon

GNS raised its volcanic alert level from one to two and the aviation colour code from green to red following the eruption at 10.23am. The aviation colour code was lowered from red to orange this afternoon, but the alert level remains at two.

GNS says it was a small eruption and continued for about 10 minutes. The eruption column was visible from the Bay of Plenty coast with a plume rising to about 4 km above sea level before slowly dispersing.

The activity at White Island has now returned to that before this morning's eruption, GNS said this afternoon.

The eruption originated in the active crater area that has been experiencing "very small mud eruptions" in recent weeks, said Duty Volcanologist Nico Fournier.

Mud and rocks hurled

The eruption threw mud and rocks a short distance from the source, and produced large volumes of white steam, Mr Fournier said.

Weather radar observations show that a small proportion of volcanic ash was carried with the steam, he said.

White Island has been experiencing low level activity since August 2012 so an eruption like that this morning was not completely unexpected, Mr Fournier said.

Volcanologists observed a short period of strong volcanic tremor yesterday morning, but is is not clear if this was related to this morning's eruption, he said.

The hazards posed by an eruption like that this morning are restricted to anyone on White Island or possibly anchored nearby in a boat, GNS said. Anyone living in the Bay of Plenty is not at risk, it said.

White Island erupts. Source: supplied by Jennifer and Alex Simon

White Island erupts. Source: supplied by Jennifer and Alex Simon

It is too soon for any kind of prediction of activity in the next few days, Mr Fournier said.

"Given the low level of activity over the last year we are watching carefully and would not be surprised if there were further eruptions in the next few days."

Bay of Plenty Civil Defence Emergency Management Group says it is monitoring the situation on White Island based on the GNS Volcanic Alert Bulletin issued this morning.

Based on GNS's advice the main risk from any activity is to people visiting the island, Civil Defence said.

As White Island is an active volcano people visiting the island and vessels travelling nearby should be cautious as an eruption could occur at any time with little or no warning, the group said.

Local tour operators and other parties had been kept informed.

'Mushroom cloud'

A large mushroom-shaped cloud is hanging over the island, according to an eyewitness.

Daniel Harvey told ONE News that he looked out of his boat and saw what looked like a "mushroom cloud" rising from the volcano this morning.

"It is much bigger than usual," he said.

Steve Sherburn a GNS Volcanologist described it as a "strong" explosion of mainly steam and it was unexpected.

Helicopter tour at White Island. Source: Supplied

GNS said it will not be going out to White Island today because of the danger.

"We need to do a risk assessment so we are not going into a situation that's too risky," Mr Sherburn said.

White Island Tours says it had a sight-seeing boat approaching the island as the eruption happened.

The Marketing Manager, Patrick O'Sullivan, said the skipper noticed an increased level of steam coming off the island so navigated to the east to gain a clearer view of the crater.

Mr O'Sullivan said the company would not be landing boats on the island today but expected to resume operations tomorrow.

Previous activity

On July 25, GNS volcanologists issued a low level volcanic alert following an increase in volcanic tremor levels.

They found two types of activity, volcanologist Brad Scott said.

"Audible jets of gas were being shot through the small lake and broader expanding bubbles of dark lake sediments and debris were being ejected 20-30 metres vertically."

WATCH: White Island eruption sparks heightened alert.

It was similar to the volcanic activity that happened earlier in February, when the volcano spewed ash into the air and the volcanic alert level was raised to two.

For up to date information, view the latest Volcanic alert bulletin at GeoNet. http://info.geonet.org.nz/display/home/Latest+News. - TVNZ.