Thursday, May 15, 2014

THE AGE OF OBAMA: Precursors To The End Of The United States Corporation - Militias Promise To Oust Obama, Boehner And Other Top Officials This Friday In A 30-Million-Man March On Washington Called "OPERATION AMERICAN SPRING"!

May 15, 2014 - UNITED STATES - A retired United States Army colonel expects as many as 30 million like-minded individuals will descend on Washington, DC this week and demand that President Barack Obama and other members of his administration be booted from office.


The US Capitol in Washington, DC (AFP Photo / Saul Loeb)

Those are just some of the demands that Col. Harry Riley, founder of “Operation American Spring,” said he’ll ask the Obama administration to adhere to when militia members and patriots of all sorts arrive in the nation’s capital on Friday and begin demonstrating against a government the group considers to be in violation of the principles established by the founders of the country.

“We are calling for the removal of Barack Obama, Joe Biden, Harry Reid, Mitch McConnell, John Boehner, Nancy Pelosi and Eric Holder as a start toward constitutional restoration,” Riley told the Before Its News website during an interview earlier this year.

“They have all abandoned the US Constitution,” he said, and “are unworthy to be retained in a position that calls for servant status.”

Riley told Before Its News in January that he expects his Operation American Spring movement will provoke anywhere from 10 million to 30 million Americans to mobilize this week and arrive in DC, where they will participate in a “massive, gigantic effort as a last stand before America moves into a more devastating condition.”

“For more than five years, ‘we the people’ have been writing, calling, faxing Congress, the media, screaming in town halls, marching, rallying, demonstrating, petitioning, all to no avail,” he said. “Every branch of government looks at ‘we the people’ whom they have taken an oath to serve, as ‘pests,’ interfering with their political agenda, cramping their self-serving, greedy agendas. We have no faith in the ballot box any longer, as many believe this sacred secret box has been compromised.”

To bring about that change, Riley says he hopes his group succeeds at shutting down the federal government. Whether or not all 29,999,999 of his compatriots will follow through, however, remains yet to be seen — a similar protest against Pres. Obama’s administration arranged last year by a fleet of truck drivers fell well short of making the dent that that group hoped to make.

“Last October,‘10,000’ truckers were reportedly on their way to literally clog the Beltway and shut down traffic in protest of Washington politics,” Abby Ohlhiser wrote for The Wire on Thursday this week. “In reality, about 30 truckers showed up, and they caused no delays worth mentioning.”

Should Riley succeed in wrangling up 30 million Americans, Ohlhiser added, then he’ll have garnered the support of around one-tenth of the US population.

And though that goal — or the substantially smaller 10 million figure — is unlikely to be met, some individuals are already claiming on the official Operation American Spring forums to have arrived in the DC area ahead of Friday’s planned demonstration: on Thursday morning, one member of the message board wrote that his truck had already finished the 2,750 mile haul to the DC region in around 50.5 hours and had set up a base at a compound 27 miles outside of the city in rural Virginia.

“Camp is up and we have been meeting the other state camps. Good solid folks all the way around,” he wrote in another post.

According to other posts on the page, fellow Operation American Spring participants planned to meet at Arlington National Cemetery a stone’s throw from the District of Columbia on Friday morning, then march to the capital and stay there for days. Others on the forum have been attempting to arrange travel accommodations from as far away as Tucson, Arizona, Des Moines, Iowa and southeast Texas, and have been debating on the website where to camp in the DC area or whether or not to bring firearms along for the ride.

On a separate page linked from the forums, Col. Reid wrote that “One million or more of the assembled 10 million must be prepared to stay in DC as long as it takes to see Obama, Biden, Reid, McConnell, Boehner, Pelosi and Attorney General Holder removed from office.”

“We must appeal to ten million and more American patriots to come and stay in Washington, DC to stop the White House and Congress from total destruction of the United States. It’s now or never. God help us,” he wrote. - RT.


GLOBAL VOLCANISM: Kick'em Jenny - Could Dangerous Underwater Volcano In The Caribbean Cause A U.S. Tsunami?!

May 15, 2014 - CARIBBEAN - A team of scientists is exploring the darkest corners of a huge underwater volcano in the Caribbean in hopes of better understanding the mysteries of earthquakes and tsunamis, ultimately saving lives.




Kick'em Jenny is a dangerous and active volcano sitting roughly 6,000 feet below the surface of the Caribbean Sea, and located off the coast of the island of Grenada, south of St. Lucia.

Robert Ballard, famous for discovering the Titanic 12,000 feet below the surface of the icy North Atlantic in 1985, set his sights on exploring the Kick'em Jenny to study its eruption history and learn more about how underwater volcanoes can pose a threat.

Ballard, the president of The Ocean Exploration Trust and the director of the Center for Ocean Exploration at the University of Rhode Island’s Graduate School of Oceanography, said the Kick'em Jenny volcano has a history of explosive eruptions, which could have the potential to trigger tsunamis, the effects from which could be felt as far away as the northeastern United States.

According to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), the Kick'em Jenny volcano has erupted 10 times since 1939 with the most recent eruption in 1990.




“This is the most hazardous part of our planet, where [tectonic] plates are head-on,” Ballard said, noting that the devastating 2011 Japanese earthquake and the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami were both underwater earthquakes.

“Nightline” accompanied Ballard and his team of 40 explorers aboard their exploration vessel Nautilus during the final 48 hours of their 90-day voyage, which was documented for an upcoming National Geographic special, "Caribbean's Deadly Underworld," which premieres Sunday on Nat Geo WILD.

The conditions around the Kick'em Jenny volcano are so dangerous to humans that Ballard and his team relied on the Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) “Hercules,” a 5,000-pound submersible, to be their eyes and ears inside the volcano. As Hercules descends into the volcano, Ballard and his team watch the robot’s live cameras from a control room aboard the Nautilus.

After hours of searching, the team made a startling discovery: life.

“It means that places that we thought there was very little life existing on our plant, we’ve just opened up a whole other area where life seems to be thriving,” Ballard said. “A lot of the deep sea is sort of like you know you can think of it as a desert. We just found an oasis in that desert.”


WATCH: Could Underwater Caribbean Volcano Threaten U.S.?





On its journey, Hercules took pictures of its surroundings, made maps and collected samples, including organisms living inside the volcano and even reaching inside the volcano’s bubbling plume to gather materials.

Such discoveries on Ballard’s trip could allow scientists to better understand the threats posed by underwater volcanic eruptions.

“And there’s no reason to stop, there’s 72 percent of the planet hardly explored,” Ballard said. “I like to tell children that their generation is the generation that will explore more of earth than all previous generations combined.” - ABC News.



GREAT DELUGE: Bosnia, Serbia Hit By Worst Flooding In 120 YEARS - 3 Dead, Widespread Power Outages, Several Town And Villages Isolated, State Of Emergency In Many Cities!

May 15, 2014 - BOSNIA, SERBIA - The heaviest rains and floods in the past 120 years hit Bosnia and Serbia this week, killing three people, cutting off electricity and leaving several towns and villages isolated.


Firefighters evacuate people during floods in Zenica May 15, 2014. Several Bosnian
cities have been affected by floods caused by heavy rains.

REUTERS/Dado Ruvic

The three casualties, one of them a firefighter on a rescue mission, drowned in Serbia. The country declared a state of emergency in 18 towns and cities, including the capital, Belgrade.

Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic said on Thursday he would declare an emergency for the whole country at 1100 GMT.

"This is the greatest flooding disaster ever. Not only in the past 100 years; this has never happened in Serbia's history," Vucic told a news conference. "More rain fell in one day than in four months."

In Bosnia, army helicopters evacuated dozens of people stranded in their homes in the central town of Maglaj, where the Bosna river swelled to record levels, reaching the first floors of apartment buildings.

Special police were trying to reach the northern Bosnian town of Doboj, which was cut off from the rest of the country after all major roads out were flooded.

The Bosnian government ordered the defence ministry to use troops to help thousands of civilians whose homes were engulfed by water, particularly in the central and eastern regions.

"This is the worst rainfall in Bosnia since 1894, when weather measurements started to be recorded," said Zeljko Majstorovic, a Sarajevo meteorologist. He said the rain, which began on Tuesday, would continue until the end of the week.

Many roads were deluged and towns and villages completely cut off. Schools were closed across both countries.

Serbian Energy Minister Aleksandar Antic said power supplies were cut to around 100,000 households, mostly in central Serbia.

Serbia's power company, Elektroprivreda Srbije, said it had mobilised teams to monitor the situation on the ground. Flooding had disrupted production in two coal mines supplying major thermal plants, the company said.

A major highway from Belgrade to Macedonia and Bulgaria was flooded and the traffic interrupted. The main south-bound railway line to Montenegro's port of Bar was also closed down.

Bosnia's top utility, Elektroprivreda BiH, said at least 5,000 households were without electricity in the central and eastern parts of the country.  - The Star.



WEATHER ANOMALIES: More Signs Of Magnetic Polar Migration - NOAA Study Reveals That Tropical Cyclone "Maximum Intensity" Is Shifting Toward The Poles!

May 15, 2014 - CLIMATE CHANGE - Over the past 30 years, the location where tropical cyclones reach maximum intensity has been shifting toward the poles in both the northern and southern hemispheres at a rate of about 35 miles, or one-half a degree of latitude, per decade according to a new study, The Poleward Migration of the Location of Tropical Cyclone Maximum Intensity, published tomorrow in Nature.


Typhoon Francisco and Super Typhoon Lekima on October 23, 2013 as they tracked northwestward toward China and
Japan. (Credit: Tim Olander and Rick Kohrs, SSEC/CIMSS/UW-Madison, based on Japan Meteorological Agency data.)

As tropical cyclones move into higher latitudes, some regions closer to the equator may experience reduced risk, while coastal populations and infrastructure poleward of the tropics may experience increased risk. With their devastating winds and flooding, tropical cyclones can especially endanger coastal cities not adequately prepared for them. Additionally, regions in the tropics that depend on cyclones' rainfall to help replenish water resources may be at risk for lower water availability as the storms migrate away from them.

The amount of poleward migration varies by region. The greatest migration is found in the northern and southern Pacific and South Indian Oceans, but there is no evidence that the peak intensity of Atlantic hurricanes has migrated poleward in the past 30 years.

By using the locations where tropical cyclones reach their maximum intensity, the scientists have high confidence in their results.

"Historical intensity estimates can be very inconsistent over time, but the location where a tropical cyclone reaches its maximum intensity is a more reliable value and less likely to be influenced by data discrepancies or uncertainties," said Jim Kossin, the paper's lead author, who is a scientist with NOAA's National Climatic Data Center currently stationed at the NOAA Cooperative Institute for Meteorological Satellite Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Consistent with this poleward shift, many other studies are showing an expansion of the tropics over the same period since 1980.

"The rate at which tropical cyclones are moving toward the poles is consistent with the observed rates of tropical expansion," explains Kossin. "The expansion of the tropics appears to be influencing the environmental factors that control tropical cyclone formation and intensification, which is apparently driving their migration toward the poles."

The expansion of the tropics has been observed independently from the poleward migration of tropical cyclones, but both phenomena show similar variability and trends, strengthening the idea that the two phenomena are linked. Scientists have attributed the expansion of the tropics in part to human-caused increases of greenhouse gases, stratospheric ozone depletion, and increases in atmospheric pollution.

However, determining whether the poleward shift of tropical cyclone maximum intensity can be linked to human activity will require more and longer-term investigations.

"Now that we see this clear trend, it is crucial that we understand what has caused it - so we can understand what is likely to occur in the years and decades to come," says Gabriel Vecchi, scientist at NOAA's Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory and coauthor of the study. NOAA’s mission is to understand and predict changes in the Earth's environment, from the depths of the ocean to the surface of the sun, and to conserve and manage our coastal and marine resources. - NOAA News.



HIGH STRANGENESS: Natural Phenomenon Or Man-Made - Mystery Sea-Grass Circles In Croatia Puzzle Experts?!

May 15, 2014 - CROATIA -  You've heard about crop circles, but what about sea-grass circles? Aerial photos of the coastline of several islands in Croatia show regular circles of sand amidst a sea of Posidonia oceanica, a sea-grass endemic to the Mediterranean.


Empty circles in seagrass, roughly 164 feet in diameter, near the Croatian island Dugi Otok.
The Google Maps screenshot was not enhanced in any way. 
Google Maps

Biologist Mosor Prvan from the Sunce Association, a nonprofit environmental organization that first noticed the circles, doesn't have an explanation for the phenomenon. The circles are about 164 feet in diameter and are roughly at the same distance from the islands and from one another.

"We've first seen the circles in aerial photos in 2013 while working on a habitat mapping project at the islands of Unije, Susak and Srakane," Prvan told Mashable.

If you know where to look, the circles are easy to spot on Google Maps. But Prvan and the team from Sunce have dived in these locations to check with their own eyes.

"At first we thought it was some sort of photo manipulation, so we dived at one of the locations, and sure enough, the circles were there. They had a perfect edge, as if someone pulled the Posidonia out with a corkscrew," says Prvan.


The circles in seagrass near the island of Unije, Croatia. The image is a screenshot of an actual map
from Arkod and has not been enhanced in any way. 
Arkod

A similar case of mysterious seagrass rings in Denmark has been explained by scientists in January 2014 - the rings were a result of a poisonous substance that was killing the seagrass, leaving circular marks.

But this case is different in several ways: The rings are larger and more regular, both in their shape and the pattern in which they appear.

Prvan is sure the phenomenon is antropogenic (manmade). "I don't know the cause, but I think it's manmade. I've contacted several experts on Posidonia, and they've never seen anything like that. I don't think it could be a bacteria or a substance poisonous to the seagrass."

Another solution that comes to mind is illegal dynamite fishing, which can damage the seabed, but Prvan waves it off. "Dynamite leaves smaller, irregular trails. It would take a huge amount of dynamite to cause a 50 meter circle."


Posidonia oceanica, a seagrass species endemic to the Mediterranean SeaVedran Nikolić


And it's not all just a brain-teaser, either - the phenomenon could potentially have serious ramification on the environment. "The Adriatic is one of the most important Posidonia habitat in the Mediterranean," says Prvan.

What's the most probable cause, then?

"If I had to take a wild guess, I'd say military experiments. Posidonia grows slowly, only 2 to 3 centimeters a year, and there's a theory among experts that once you removed a patch of Posidonia like that, it would not grow there again," he said. "Whatever caused this could have happened years ago. So, to determine the cause, the first thing to do would be to find out how old these circles are." - Mashable.



PLAGUES & PESTILENCES: MERS Contagion - Saudi Arabia Reports 10 More Deaths From MERS Virus, 20 Other Cases As MERS Warnings Now Displayed In 22 U.S. Airports!

May 15, 2014 - HEALTH Saudi Arabia said that 10 more people infected with Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) had died over the last two days and identified 20 new cases of the virus, pushing the total number of infections in the country to 511.

Saudi Arabia Reports 10 More Deaths From MERS Virus, 20 Other Cases
The Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) coronavirus is seen in an undated transmission electron 
micrograph from the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID). Reuters

Five of the deaths were reported on Tuesday and five on Wednesday, according to statements on the health ministry's website.

They took the death toll in Saudi Arabia to 157 since MERS, a coronavirus like Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS), was identified two years ago.

The World Health Organisation said on Wednesday that while concern about the virus had "significantly increased", the disease was not yet a global health emergency.

Of the 16 new cases identified on Wednesday, two had died. Of the four cases identified on Tuesday, one had died, the ministry said.

SARS which killed around 800 people worldwide after emerging in China in 2002. It can cause coughing, fever and pneumonia, and there is no vaccine or anti-viral treatment against it.

The rate of infection in Saudi Arabia has surged in recent weeks after big outbreaks associated with hospitals in Jeddah and Riyadh. The total number of infections nearly doubled in April and has risen by a further 25 percent already in May.

The recent upsurge is of particular concern because of the influx of pilgrims from around the world expected in July during the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan.

Scientists around the world have been searching for the animal source, or reservoir, of MERS virus infections ever since the first human cases were confirmed in September 2012.
- Reuters.


MERS Warnings Now Displayed In 22 U.S. Airports
Travelers in 22 international airports across the United States — including Boston’s Logan International Airport — will now see warning materials posted about Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

MERS is a viral respiratory illness that can be deadly. A man who flew through Logan earlier this month was diagnosed with the second U.S. case, reports The Boston Globe. There have been more than 500 confirmed cases worldwide since MERS was first identified in Saudi Arabia in 2012. Both U.S. cases involve travelers who came to the U.S. from Saudi Arabia, but the cases are not linked, reports the CDC.

“We wanted to reach the majority of travelers going to and coming back from Arabian Peninsula,” said Christine Pearson from the CDC. “The signs will display information so passengers can protect themselves while they’re traveling and know what to look out for when they get back.”


WATCH: MERS Warnings Now Displayed In U.S. Airports.

 


The health advisory asks people who travel to the Arabian Peninsula (including Bahrain, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Palestinian territories, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Syria, the United Arab Emirates, and Yemen) to wash their hands often, avoid touching their face, and avoid close contact with sick people. The materials also educate travelers about the stymptoms of MERS, which include fever, cough, and shortness of breath.

“If you get sick within 14 days of being in the Arabian Peninsula, call a doctor and tell the doctor where you traveled,” says the advisory.

The traveler involved in the first U.S. case reported earlier this month was treated, released from the hospital, and is considered fully recovered, according to the CDC. The second traveler, the man who traveled through Logan, is currently hospitalized and doing well. Health officials are contacting at least 80 Massachusetts residents who were on the same flights as that man, reports the Globe.

MERS was first identified in Saudi Arabia in 2012. There have been more than 500 confirmed cases across 18 countries and 145 people have died of MERS, according to the CDC. Of those, 450 cases and 118 deaths were reported in Saudi Arabia.

The CDC is monitoring the situation and at this point does not recommend people change their travel plans, writing on its website,

“These two cases of MERS imported to the U.S. represent a very low risk to the general public in this country.” - Boston.



PLANETARY TREMORS: Excessive Groundwater Pumping In California Can Stress The San Andreas Fault - Potentially Increasing The Risk of Future Earthquakes!

May 15, 2014 - CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES - Excessive groundwater pumping for irrigation in California's agricultural belt can stress the San Andreas Fault, potentially increasing the risk of future small earthquakes, a new study suggests.


FILE - This 2007 aerial file photo provided by United States Geological Survey,
shows a view looking southeast along the surface trace of the San Andreas fault
in the Carrizo Plain area of California. A study released Wednesday, May 14, 2014
by the journal Nature suggests excessive groundwater pumping for irrigation in
California's agricultural belt can stress the San Andreas Fault, potentially
creating future earthquakes. USGS, Scott Haefner / AP Photo


Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/2014/05/14/4116664/groundwater-removal-may-stress.html#storylink=cpy

GPS readings found parts of the San Joaquin Valley floor have been sinking for decades through gradual depletion of the aquifer while the surrounding mountains are being uplifted. This motion produces slight stress changes on the San Andreas and neighboring faults.

"The magnitude of these stress changes is exceedingly small compared to the stresses relieved during a large earthquake," lead researcher Colin Amos, a geologist at Western Washington University, said in an email.

The findings were released Wednesday by the journal Nature.

The study suggests that human activities "can cause significant unclamping of the nearby San Andreas Fault system" through flexing of the Earth's crust and upper mantle, Paul Lundgren of the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory wrote in an accompanying editorial. Lundgren had no role in the research.

In the past century, the amount of groundwater drawn from the Central Valley for crop irrigation is equal to the volume of Lake Tahoe. The ongoing drought is expected to exacerbate the problem as communities tap groundwater faster than it can be replenished. As the valley subsides, this change in load causes the Sierra Nevada and Coast ranges to rise, according to GSP measurements taken between 2007 and 2010.

Since the San Andreas runs parallel to the valley, scientists said this upward flexing of the surrounding land can trigger small quakes. However, it's unclear whether long-term stresses from groundwater extraction have any bearing on future large earthquakes on the fault.

"These earthquakes are likely to occur no matter what humans do," Amos said.

The San Andreas is the most significant fault crisscrossing California. Nearly 800 miles long, it stretches from a peninsula north of San Francisco to the Salton Sea near the U.S.-Mexico border. The fault is responsible for some of the most devastating seismic disasters in state history including the 1906 San Francisco earthquake that reduced much of the city to rubble.

Scientists have said a magnitude-7.8 event on the southern San Andreas — a so-called Big One — could kill 1,800 people and cause $200 billion in damage.

For the past several years, the state has held preparedness drills designed to help residents cope with strong shaking. - Miami Herald.



CLIMATE CHANGE DOOMSDAY: California Governor Jerry Brown Warns LAX Will Have To MOVE Due To Global Warming - That California May Be UNDERWATER In The Future?!

May 15, 2014 - CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES - California Governor Jerry Brown, presenting his revised state budget to reporters in Los Angeles on Tuesday, warned that California my be underwater in the future--not because of his budget, but because glaciers in Antarctica will collapse and sea levels will rise four feet over the next 200 years.




Brown cautioned, "If that happens, the Los Angeles airport's going to be underwater. So is the San Francisco airport." As for the San Onofre nuclear power plant: "You’re going to have to move all that … That’s billions, if not tens of billions. Luckily, we can take a few years."

Brown’s comments, as reported by the Los Angeles Times, were triggered by two studies released on Monday which asserted that a slow-motion collapse of glaciers in Antarctica has begun.

Brown dismissed critics of his costly high-speed rail project, likening them to critics of Abraham Lincoln’s plan to build the intercontinental railroad during the Civil War. He barked, "People would say, 'How the hell are you going to do that?' Well, they did it." He also brought up critics of the construction of the Golden Gate Bridge, Bay Area Rapid Transit system, and the Panama and Suez canals.

Brown’s $156.2 billion spending proposal for the new fiscal year is coming under fire from Democrats who feel he has cut too much social service spending, and some resent him taking money from the state’s greenhouse gas reduction program and channeling it toward his high-speed rail project.




Brown also dismissed criticism of his new budget from his GOP challengers, Assemblyman Tim Donnelly of Twin Peaks and former banker Neel Kashkari of Laguna Beach.

Alluding to California’s two previous governors, Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger and Democrat Gray Davis, he added, "Two governors left town with those big red lines down there. I have to tell you, I’m going to be very compassionate, but I'm going to do my best to leave town in the black, not the red, and that then forces a number of tough decisions," according to the Times.

Brown’s supposed surplus hides some hard facts: according to Forbes in July 2013, unfunded pension and medical liability were not included in Brown's last budget. That debt amounted to roughly $27 billion, and was siphoned off to pay California’s Unemployment Insurance Fund. Forbes reported:

Of course, California has far greater debts than that. One study showed that California governments are over $1 trillion in debt. Most of that is in the form of unfunded pension and medical liabilities owed to state employees. California’s Legislative Analyst told Brown and the Democrat-run legislature to increase the contributions to the state’s teacher’s pension fund by a paltry $4.5 billion to address its announced $73 billion short fall.

Update: An aide to the governor has corrected his claim that LAX will have to be moved, the Los Angeles Times reports:

“The governor misspoke about LAX,” said Evan Westrup, a spokesman for the Brown administration.

Environmental officials for Los Angeles World Airports, the operator of LAX, said the airport has an elevation of more than 120 feet. “A 4-foot rise in sea level,” they said, “should have minimal impact on airport operations.”


- Breitbart.



PLANETARY TREMORS: Seismic Uptick On The Philippine Sea Plate - Strong 6.2 Magnitude Earthquake Strikes Off Philippines; THIRD Large Temblor In The Region In Less Than 24 Hours! [MAPS+TECTONIC SUMMARY]

May 15, 2014 - PHILIPPINES -  A strong quake struck at sea off a major island in the central Philippines on Thursday, but there were no immediate reports of damage or casualties and no tsunami warning was issued.


USGS earthquake location map.


The US Geological Survey said the 6.2-magnitude quake struck the Sulu Sea 38 kilometres (24 miles) off the southwest coast of Negros island at 6:16pm local time (1016 GMT).

The quake hit at a depth of 53 kilometres, and the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology said it was not expecting any damage.

The institute measured it at a magnitude of 6.3.

USGS earthquake shakemap intensity map.


Edmundo Vilches, an official at the civil defence office for the region, said their Negros staff had not reported any casualties or damage.

"There was some swaying of furniture here at the office, but nothing serious," Vilches told AFP by telephone from Iloilo city on Panay island near Negros. - Channel News Asia.



Tectonic Summary - Seismotectonics of the Philippine Sea and Vicinity.
The Philippine Sea plate is bordered by the larger Pacific and Eurasia plates and the smaller Sunda plate. The Philippine Sea plate is unusual in that its borders are nearly all zones of plate convergence. The Pacific plate is subducted into the mantle, south of Japan, beneath the Izu-Bonin and Mariana island arcs, which extend more than 3,000 km along the eastern margin of the Philippine Sea plate. This subduction zone is characterized by rapid plate convergence and high-level seismicity extending to depths of over 600 km. In spite of this extensive zone of plate convergence, the plate interface has been associated with few great (Magnitude greater than 8.0) ‘megathrust’ earthquakes. This low seismic energy release is thought to result from weak coupling along the plate interface (Scholz and Campos, 1995). These convergent plate margins are also associated with unusual zones of back-arc extension (along with resulting seismic activity) that decouple the volcanic island arcs from the remainder of the Philippine Sea Plate (Karig et al., 1978; Klaus et al., 1992).

South of the Mariana arc, the Pacific plate is subducted beneath the Yap Islands along the Yap trench. The long zone of Pacific plate subduction at the eastern margin of the Philippine Sea Plate is responsible for the generation of the deep Izu-Bonin, Mariana, and Yap trenches as well as parallel chains of islands and volcanoes, typical of circum-pacific island arcs. Similarly, the northwestern margin of the Philippine Sea plate is subducting beneath the Eurasia plate along a convergent zone, extending from southern Honshu to the northeastern coast of Taiwan, manifested by the Ryukyu Islands and the Nansei-Shoto (Ryukyu) trench. The Ryukyu Subduction Zone is associated with a similar zone of back-arc extension, the Okinawa Trough. At Taiwan, the plate boundary is characterized by a zone of arc-continent collision, whereby the northern end of the Luzon island arc is colliding with the buoyant crust of the Eurasia continental margin offshore China.


USGS plate tectonics for the region.


Along its western margin, the Philippine Sea plate is associated with a zone of oblique convergence with the Sunda Plate. This highly active convergent plate boundary extends along both sides the Philippine Islands, from Luzon in the north to the Celebes Islands in the south. The tectonic setting of the Philippines is unusual in several respects: it is characterized by opposite-facing subduction systems on its east and west sides; the archipelago is cut by a major transform fault, the Philippine Fault; and the arc complex itself is marked by active volcanism, faulting, and high seismic activity. Subduction of the Philippine Sea Plate occurs at the eastern margin of the archipelago along the Philippine Trench and its northern extension, the East Luzon Trough. The East Luzon Trough is thought to be an unusual example of a subduction zone in the process of formation, as the Philippine Trench system gradually extends northward (Hamburger et al., 1983). On the west side of Luzon, the Sunda Plate subducts eastward along a series of trenches, including the Manila Trench in the north, the smaller less well-developed Negros Trench in the central Philippines, and the Sulu and Cotabato trenches in the south (Cardwell et al., 1980). At its northern and southern terminations, subduction at the Manila Trench is interrupted by arc-continent collision, between the northern Philippine arc and the Eurasian continental margin at Taiwan and between the Sulu-Borneo Block and Luzon at the island of Mindoro. The Philippine fault, which extends over 1,200 km within the Philippine arc, is seismically active. The fault has been associated with major historical earthquakes, including the destructive M7.6 Luzon earthquake of 1990 (Yoshida and Abe, 1992). A number of other active intra-arc fault systems are associated with high seismic activity, including the Cotabato Fault and the Verde Passage-Sibuyan Sea Fault (Galgana et al., 2007).

Relative plate motion vectors near the Philippines (about 80 mm/yr) is oblique to the plate boundary along the two plate margins of central Luzon, where it is partitioned into orthogonal plate convergence along the trenches and nearly pure translational motion along the Philippine Fault (Barrier et al., 1991). Profiles B and C reveal evidence of opposing inclined seismic zones at intermediate depths (roughly 70-300 km) and complex tectonics at the surface along the Philippine Fault.

Several relevant tectonic elements, plate boundaries and active volcanoes, provide a context for the seismicity presented on the main map. The plate boundaries are most accurate along the axis of the trenches and more diffuse or speculative in the South China Sea and Lesser Sunda Islands. The active volcanic arcs (Siebert and Simkin, 2002) follow the Izu, Volcano, Mariana, and Ryukyu island chains and the main Philippine islands parallel to the Manila, Negros, Cotabato, and Philippine trenches.

Seismic activity along the boundaries of the Philippine Sea Plate (Allen et al., 2009) has produced 7 great (Magnitude greater than 8.0) earthquakes and 250 large (Magnitude greater than 7) events. Among the most destructive events were the 1923 Kanto, the 1948 Fukui and the 1995 Kobe (Japan) earthquakes (99,000, 5,100, and 6,400 casualties, respectively), the 1935 and the 1999 Chi-Chi (Taiwan) earthquakes (3,300 and 2,500 casualties, respectively), and the 1976 M7.6 Moro Gulf and 1990 M7.6 Luzon (Philippines) earthquakes (7,100 and 2,400 casualties, respectively). There have also been a number of tsunami-generating events in the region, including the Moro Gulf earthquake, whose tsunami resulted in more than 5000 deaths. - USGS.



EXTREME WEATHER: State Of Emergency Declared In San Diego County As Wildfires Rage - Thousands Of Acres Burned; Thousands Evacuated; Dozens Of Homes Destroyed; Widespread Power Outages! [PHOTOS+VIDEO]

May 15, 2014 - CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES - Dry conditions and blistering heat have led to multiple fires in the San Diego County, California area on Wednesday, leading Gov. Jerry Brown to declare a state of emergency. The fires have burnt several homes and prompted thousands of evacuations.


SEE: A tornado of caught on video in .

Firefighters battle a fire in Carlsbad, California May 14, 2014. (Reuters / Sam Hodgson)

Two fires broke out at Camp Pendleton, a top US Marine Corps base in northern San Diego County. The blazes charred about 100 acres in areas near Interstate 5, causing the freeway to shut down, the Times of San Diego reported. Some Camp Pendleton residents were forced to flee their housing.

A separate blaze, dubbed the Poinsettia Fire, resulted in the evacuation of thousands of residents in Carlsbad – less than ten miles from Camp Pendleton – from over 11,000 homes, schools, and businesses. San Diego Gas and Electric reported that an estimated 2,000 residents in and around Carlsbad were without power, and a number of homes were engulfed in flames, according to Reuters.

In Fallbrook, located about 30 miles northeast of Carlsbad, a brush fire led to a midday evacuation order in areas near Interstate 15.

Gov. Brown declared a state of emergency in the area hours after conditions prompted San Diego County officials to proclaim a local emergency.

The state Office of Emergency Services announced that federal aid is open to local authorities combating the Poinsettia Fire. A fire management assistance grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency will reimburse the much of firefighting costs for responding local, state, and tribal agencies working against the fires, according to the state OES.


Firefighters battle a fire in Carlsbad, California May 14, 2014. (Reuters / Sam Hodgson)

View from the sky. Photo courtesy of @cGilbertRun.

One of at least 30 homes destroyed by fire in Carlsbad

A Helicopter assists in fighting fire at the Ranch Fire near San Diego, California May 13, 2014. (Reuters / Sandy Huffaker)

Fire-fighters work to put out spot fires caused by strong winds as they keep close watch over the Bernardo fire
north of San Diego, California May 14, 2014. (Reuters / Sandy Huffaker)

A fire-fighter works to put out spot fires caused by strong winds as they keep close watch over the
Bernardo fire north of San Diego, California May 14, 2014. (Reuters / Mike Blake)

Greg Saska watches his mother's house burn as firefighters battle a fire in Carlsbad, California May 14, 2014.
(Reuters / Sam Hodgson)


"We welcome FEMA's approval of Governor (Jerry) Brown's request for assistance," said state OES Director Mark Ghilarducci. "Fires like the Poinsettia Fire can put a strain on resources, particularly at a time when dry conditions due to the drought, above normal temperatures and winds have increased the wildfire threat significantly."

The Wednesday fires follow the outbreak of Tuesday’s Bernardo Fire, also in the San Diego area. Bernardo caused thousands to evacuate their homes in and around the city of San Diego, into the evening hours, until fire crews got a handle on the blaze. The fire torched 1,500 acres of brush.


WATCH:  Wildfires engulf southern California.

 


"We're very worried about today," said Lee Swanson, a spokeswoman for San Diego Fire and Rescue. "We're looking at gusting winds to 50 miles per hour, humidity at 5 percent and temperatures reaching 100 degrees (Fahrenheit). Those are dangerous conditions."

The outbreak of fires in Southern California mark the beginning of the area’s wildfire season, exacerbated this year by record drought levels and unseasonably hot temperatures in the region. - RT.



INFRASTRUCTURE & SOCIETAL COLLAPSE: "Knee Deep" - Massive Leak Of 50,000 Gallons Of Crude Oil Spills On Los Angeles Streets!

May 15, 2014 - CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES - A ruptured oil pipe near the city of Glendale, Los Angeles County, has caused a massive leak as 50,000 gallons of crude oil spilled onto streets, which is knee high in some places, the Los Angeles Fire Department reports.


FILE PHOTO.(Reuters / Athit Perawongmetha)

The leak from a 20-inch pipe was first reported at around 12:15 am local time. The oil line was remotely shut off, the Los Angles Fire Department (LAFD) said in a press release. The oil spill has covered approximately a half-mile area, and is knee deep in some spots. The leak, which was sprung near 5175 W. San Fernando Rd., has spill has affected some commercial businesses.

"Oil is knee-high in some areas," the fire department said in a statement. "A handful of commercial businesses are affected."


Crude oil runs down street uncontained heading towards more businesses in Atwater Village.
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Gushes of oil was seen spurting straight up into the air, cascading down on a nearby business - The Gentlemen's Club. The Gentleman's Club was evacuated, the LAFD says. Vehicles within the immediate vicinity of the club have also been impacted.

The oil line has been remotely shut off and no injuries have been reported, Local NBC 4 reports.

The incident shut down a section of the Atwater Village area of the city, and The Department of Transportation is assisting with traffic.

The Fire Department did not say which company operates the pipeline.

California saw its worst oil spill in 1969, when an estimated 80,000 to 100,000 barrels of crude spilled into the Santa Barbara Channel, off the coast of the city of Santa Barbara. It remains the third largest oil spill in the US and the biggest to have occurred in the waters off California. - RT.



PLANETARY TREMORS: Very Strong 6.6 Magnitude Earthquake Strikes Southeast Of Ifalik, Micronesia - The Second 6.0 Or Higher Temblor To Hit The Area In A Few Hours! [MAPS+TECTONIC SUMMARY]

May 15, 2014 - MICRONESIA -  A strong 6.6-magnitude earthquake struck near Micronesia on Thursday, geologists said, but no tsunami warning was issued.


USGS earthquake location map.


The quake hit at 6:16 pm (0816 GMT) at a depth of 10 kilometers (six miles), 96 kilometers south-southeast of Ifalik in Micronesia, the United States Geological Survey (USGS) said.

It followed another 6.1-magnitude quake which hit in almost exactly the same location earlier Thursday.


USGS earthquake shakemap intensity map.


The Hawaii-based Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said there was no threat of a destructive widespread tsunami. - Inquirer.


Tectonic Summary - Seismotectonics of the Philippine Sea and Vicinity.
The Philippine Sea plate is bordered by the larger Pacific and Eurasia plates and the smaller Sunda plate. The Philippine Sea plate is unusual in that its borders are nearly all zones of plate convergence. The Pacific plate is subducted into the mantle, south of Japan, beneath the Izu-Bonin and Mariana island arcs, which extend more than 3,000 km along the eastern margin of the Philippine Sea plate. This subduction zone is characterized by rapid plate convergence and high-level seismicity extending to depths of over 600 km. In spite of this extensive zone of plate convergence, the plate interface has been associated with few great (Magnitude greater than 8.0) ‘megathrust’ earthquakes. This low seismic energy release is thought to result from weak coupling along the plate interface (Scholz and Campos, 1995). These convergent plate margins are also associated with unusual zones of back-arc extension (along with resulting seismic activity) that decouple the volcanic island arcs from the remainder of the Philippine Sea Plate (Karig et al., 1978; Klaus et al., 1992).

South of the Mariana arc, the Pacific plate is subducted beneath the Yap Islands along the Yap trench. The long zone of Pacific plate subduction at the eastern margin of the Philippine Sea Plate is responsible for the generation of the deep Izu-Bonin, Mariana, and Yap trenches as well as parallel chains of islands and volcanoes, typical of circum-pacific island arcs. Similarly, the northwestern margin of the Philippine Sea plate is subducting beneath the Eurasia plate along a convergent zone, extending from southern Honshu to the northeastern coast of Taiwan, manifested by the Ryukyu Islands and the Nansei-Shoto (Ryukyu) trench. The Ryukyu Subduction Zone is associated with a similar zone of back-arc extension, the Okinawa Trough. At Taiwan, the plate boundary is characterized by a zone of arc-continent collision, whereby the northern end of the Luzon island arc is colliding with the buoyant crust of the Eurasia continental margin offshore China.


USGS plate tectonics for the region.


Along its western margin, the Philippine Sea plate is associated with a zone of oblique convergence with the Sunda Plate. This highly active convergent plate boundary extends along both sides the Philippine Islands, from Luzon in the north to the Celebes Islands in the south. The tectonic setting of the Philippines is unusual in several respects: it is characterized by opposite-facing subduction systems on its east and west sides; the archipelago is cut by a major transform fault, the Philippine Fault; and the arc complex itself is marked by active volcanism, faulting, and high seismic activity. Subduction of the Philippine Sea Plate occurs at the eastern margin of the archipelago along the Philippine Trench and its northern extension, the East Luzon Trough. The East Luzon Trough is thought to be an unusual example of a subduction zone in the process of formation, as the Philippine Trench system gradually extends northward (Hamburger et al., 1983). On the west side of Luzon, the Sunda Plate subducts eastward along a series of trenches, including the Manila Trench in the north, the smaller less well-developed Negros Trench in the central Philippines, and the Sulu and Cotabato trenches in the south (Cardwell et al., 1980). At its northern and southern terminations, subduction at the Manila Trench is interrupted by arc-continent collision, between the northern Philippine arc and the Eurasian continental margin at Taiwan and between the Sulu-Borneo Block and Luzon at the island of Mindoro. The Philippine fault, which extends over 1,200 km within the Philippine arc, is seismically active. The fault has been associated with major historical earthquakes, including the destructive M7.6 Luzon earthquake of 1990 (Yoshida and Abe, 1992). A number of other active intra-arc fault systems are associated with high seismic activity, including the Cotabato Fault and the Verde Passage-Sibuyan Sea Fault (Galgana et al., 2007).

Relative plate motion vectors near the Philippines (about 80 mm/yr) is oblique to the plate boundary along the two plate margins of central Luzon, where it is partitioned into orthogonal plate convergence along the trenches and nearly pure translational motion along the Philippine Fault (Barrier et al., 1991). Profiles B and C reveal evidence of opposing inclined seismic zones at intermediate depths (roughly 70-300 km) and complex tectonics at the surface along the Philippine Fault.

Several relevant tectonic elements, plate boundaries and active volcanoes, provide a context for the seismicity presented on the main map. The plate boundaries are most accurate along the axis of the trenches and more diffuse or speculative in the South China Sea and Lesser Sunda Islands. The active volcanic arcs (Siebert and Simkin, 2002) follow the Izu, Volcano, Mariana, and Ryukyu island chains and the main Philippine islands parallel to the Manila, Negros, Cotabato, and Philippine trenches.

Seismic activity along the boundaries of the Philippine Sea Plate (Allen et al., 2009) has produced 7 great (Magnitude greater than 8.0) earthquakes and 250 large (Magnitude greater than 7) events. Among the most destructive events were the 1923 Kanto, the 1948 Fukui and the 1995 Kobe (Japan) earthquakes (99,000, 5,100, and 6,400 casualties, respectively), the 1935 and the 1999 Chi-Chi (Taiwan) earthquakes (3,300 and 2,500 casualties, respectively), and the 1976 M7.6 Moro Gulf and 1990 M7.6 Luzon (Philippines) earthquakes (7,100 and 2,400 casualties, respectively). There have also been a number of tsunami-generating events in the region, including the Moro Gulf earthquake, whose tsunami resulted in more than 5000 deaths. - USGS.



PROTESTS & SOCIETAL COLLAPSE: The Worst Crisis In Decades - Vietnam Riots Over Chinese Drilling Spread, Killing More Than 20!

May 15, 2014 - VIETNAM - More than 20 people have died and over 100 were injured in Vietnamese riots, signaling the worst breakdown in relations with China in decades. This follows China’s oil drilling in disputed waters. Hundreds of Chinese have now fled to neighboring Cambodia.


Workers hold banners, which read, "Please protest in the right way" (top), and "We are looking at soldiers on islands,
and the Paracels and the Spratlys belong to Vietnam", during a protest in an industrial
zone in Binh Duong province May 14, 2014.(Reuters / Stringer )

At least five deaths were reported to be Vietnamese, with the rest having been described as mainland Chinese.

The mass rioting included over 20,000 workers on Tuesday, before they split into smaller groups and started attacking factories near Ho Chi Minh City, formerly Saigon.

A day after looting and arson had erupted in two southern Vietnamese provinces, aggression by locals against the Chinese initiative had resulted in about 1,000 of them attacking the country’s biggest steel mill overnight, local newspapers and medics reported on Thursday.

"There were about a hundred people sent to the hospital last night. Many were Chinese. More are being sent to the hospital this morning," Reuters heard by phone from a doctor at the Ha Tinh General Hospital.

But the brunt of the Thursday violence was borne by Taiwanese firms (as well as some South Korean ones), as the ensuing chaos of the large-scale attack on the industrial complex resulted in the angry Vietnamese mistaking Taiwanese vehicles labeled ‘Formosa Plastics’ for Chinese ones. Officials from the company – Taiwan’s biggest investor in Vietnam – were not available for comment.


Commuters drive past as riot police (L) stand guard outside a burning factory building (back) in the
Vietnamese southern province of Binh Duong on May 14, 2014.(AFP Photo / STR)

Now there are reports of at least 600 Chinese fleeing the country for the Cambodian capital, according to the latest information from Phnom Penh. Its national police spokesman told the agency that the runaways had crossed the border at the Bavet international checkpoint and that they have presently been settled at “at guest houses and hotels in Phnom Penh, with around 100 people staying in Bavet town.”

The crossing is on a stretch that connects Ho Chi Minh City to Phnom Penh.

Beijing had on May 2 placed a $1 billion oil rig right in the middle of an area of the South China Sea disputed with Hanoi – an incident that provoked a reaction heralded by many as the worst breakdown in relations between the two countries since 1979, when there was a brief cross-border war.

There have been on and off skirmishes around the rig since its placement, involving aggression between the countries’ vessels. Beijing said Vietnamese ships had rammed its ships 169 times on Tuesday. Hanoi fired back similar accusations.

The oil-rig move then sparked mass riots, first in the industrial zones in the south of the country, and then migrating up into Ha Tinh province.

Before the Formosa Plastics steel mill incident, literally thousands of Vietnamese in Binh Duong and Dong Nai provinces on Tuesday set fire to foreign factories and industrial zones, prompting mass closures, locals officials reported. Later into Wednesday, the violence had reportedly subsided, before riots moved onto central provinces. By that time, some 460 companies had reported damages to their plants and factories, as dozens of police officers sustained injuries in fierce clashes with the raging crowd.


The USS Blue Ridge, flagship of the US Seventh Fleet, arrives at the port in Manila.(AFP Photo / Jay Directo)

"More than 40 policemen were injured while on duty, mainly by bricks and stones thrown by extremists," the local state-run Thanh Nien newspaper reported.

Tuesday and Wednesday incidents had resulted in approximately 600 arrests on charges of arson and looting, according to local police reports.

China has reacted promptly to the chaos with demands that justice is served, the perpetrators are punished and that the families of the more than 20 dead are compensated. The official reaction was relayed by Chinese spokeswoman Hua Chunying on Wednesday. Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung also sought to reassure Chinese colleagues that justice will take precedence over everything else.

The Chinese statement, published on the government’s website, added that certain contingency measures will be put in place to counter the anti-Chinese aggression taking place to their south. The latest has Chinese authorities accusing Vietnam of somehow assisting the rioters, as concerns by Beijing’s foreign ministry indicate.

Other Southeast Asian leaders voiced similar concerns over the diplomatic standoff and ensuing violence, speaking on Sunday at a summit in Myanmar, following an agreement by Vietnam and the Philippines to place the highest importance on the discussion of China’s territorial aspirations in the South China Sea.

However, it was the United States whose Navy made appears to be in a state of full readiness. It renewed earlier recent calls to bring more ships round to stand guard if the diplomatic situation worsens. In a move to counter the Chinese, Washington has decided to reassert its naval relations with Vietnam, especially as the latter can do little else at this point. - RT.



GLOBAL VOLCANISM: The Volcano Report For May 15, 2014 - Updates On Sinabung, Merapi, Dukono, Shishaldin, Santiaguito, And San Miguel! [PHOTOS+MAPS+GRAPHS]

May 15, 2014 - WORLDWIDE VOLCANOES - The following constitutes the new activity, unrest and ongoing reports of volcanoes across the globe, courtesy of  Volcano Discovery.

Sinabung (Sumatra, Indonesia): Activity at the volcano remains weak. Slow lava extrusion continues along with occasional ash venting and small pyroclastic flows triggered by collapse of parts of the viscous lava lobe on the southern flank.


Small pyroclastic flow at Sinabung on the morning of May 13.


Merapi (Central Java, Indonesia): PVMBG reported that during 2-8 May white plumes rose as high as 650 m above Merapi. Thumping noises continued to be reported from multiple observation posts. Seismicity fluctuated but remained above background levels.

The Alert Level remained at 2 (on a scale of 1-4) on 29 April. (Smithsonian / USGS Weekly Volcanic Activity Report 7-13 May 2014)


Dukono (Halmahera): Activity at the volcano seems to be increasing - the sighting of ash plumes on satellite imagery has become a daily job of VAAC Darwin's watchful crew. This morning, a volcanic ash plume at estimated 10,000 ft (3 km) altitude extended 25 nautical miles from the volcano to the south.


Shishaldin (United States, Aleutian Islands): The Alaska Volcano Observatory believed that the activity at the volcano has a bit increased. Satellite data show persistent high temperatures in the summit crater which could be lava flows, or even a small lava lake, likely produced by episodes of lava fountains.


Shishaldin volcano yesterday evening (AVO webcam)

The heat signals detected went along with increasing volcanic tremor detected.


MODIS hot spots at Shishaldin (MODVOLC, Univ. Hawaii)

There is no visual confirmation of such activity so far; webcam images only show a weak degassing plume, but these images are too distant to allow detailed interpretations. The aviation alert level remained at Orange.


Santa María / Santiaguito (Guatemala): As expected, heavy rainfalls triggered a hot lahar (turbulent flow of mud, boulders and ash deposits mixed with water) that traveled down the Nima I river valley yesterday. The lahar carried lava blocks up to 2 m in diameter as well as many tree branches and trunks.

Abundant steam and sulfur gasses were released from the flowing masses. The lahar passed near the volcano observatory like a mix of "cement", where it let the ground vibrate, increased water content and speed as it reached the Samala river.

Similar rainfall could cause other lahars in the river San Isidro, the other important tributary of the Samala river. (INSIVUMEH)


San Miguel (El Salvador): During the past 2 days, seismic activity at the volcano has shown a sharp increase after it had been gradually decreasing since late February.


Microseismic activity at Chaparrastique volcano (SNET)

The latest bulletins published by SNET suggest that the most likely expected eruption would be strombolian-type with associated lava flows, probably on the north side of the volcano.

Even without an eruption, the volcano poses a serious risk of mud flows and landslides that could occur as a result of heavy rainfalls.

At the moment, the only visible activity at the Chaparrastique volcano remain pulsating gas emissions, but surveillance remains at a maximum. Authorities started to establish a plan for evacuation and relocation of about 280 families living in high risk areas around the volcano.


Complete Earthquake list (worldwide) for May 15, 2014.



- Volcano Discovery.