Archive for 09/03/2011

Japan Finds Radiation Spread Over a Wide Area

09/03/2011 Leave a comment

BY MITSURU OBE – “The first comprehensive soil survey from areas around the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant showed extensive ground contamination and another report warned of the continued threat to Japan’s food chain, underscoring the major challenges the country still faces in its radioactive cleanup efforts….

Nearly six months after the accident, the education ministry released Tuesday the first comprehensive survey of soil contamination within a 62-mile radius, showing that more than 30 locations spread over a wide area have been contaminated with long-lasting radioactive cesium.

Government officials said the report did not materially alter their prior understanding of the spread and extent of contamination, previously estimated through aerial surveys and above-ground radiation monitoring. They said that the highest-contaminated communities had already been evacuated, and the new data did not justify any change in the evacuation policy.

But the extent of reported contamination does raise new questions about how quickly the communities can be cleaned up, and the dangers of radioactive materials spreading to a wider area through wind or rain.

The survey of 2,200 locations—conduced by 400 researchers in June and July—found that 33 of those locations had cesium-137 in excess of 1.48 million becquerels per square meter, the level set by the Soviet Union for forced resettlement after the 1986 Chernobyl disaster, Japanese authorities said.

Another 132 locations had a combined amount of cesium-137/134 of more than 555,000 becquerels per square meter, the level at which the Soviet authorities called for voluntary evacuation and imposed a ban on farming.” Read more.

Categories: Man-Made Disasters

Magnitude 7.0 Earthquake Shakes Vanuatu, Near Australia

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“NEW YORK, N.Y. — A magnitude-7.0 earthquake shook the Pacific island nation of Vanuatu on Sunday morning, the U.S. Geological Survey reported.

There were no immediate reports of damage or injuries. No tsunami alert was issued.

The 9:55 a.m. Sunday (10:56 GMT Saturday) quake was deep, some 132 kilometres below the surface, the USGS said.” Read more.

Categories: Earthquakes

Israel: Jewish Settlers Prepared for Palestinian Onslaught as America Attempts To Douse Flames, ‘But It May Already Be Too Late’

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Could this become the harbinger of Christ’s prophetic words in Matthew 24?

Matthew 24:15-16,21, “So when you see standing in the holy place ‘the abomination that causes desolation,’ spoken of through the prophet Daniel — let the reader understand — then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains… For then there will be great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now — and never to be equaled again.”

“The Israeli army has been busy training local security teams in the Jewish communities of Judea and Samaria (Jewish settlements) for a possible onslaught of violent Palestinian demonstrators.

Israel fears that following the Palestinian Authority’s September 20 bid at the United Nations to secure recognition of a sovereign Palestinian state in Judea and Samaria (the so-called ‘West Bank’), Palestinian mobs will march on any Jews they see as ‘invaders’ in that new state.

In fact, that is precisely what Palestinian leaders are telling the public to do.

‘The appeal to the UN is a battle for all Palestinians, and in order to succeed, it needs millions to pour into streets,’ Palestinian official Yasser Abed Rabbo told the Associated Press following a Palestinian Authority vote endorsing a mass protest march on Israel.

Rabbo and other Palestinian leaders insist the protests will be peaceful, but Israeli officials noted that more often than not the Palestinians’ definition of ‘peaceful’ does not match Israel’s.

And even if the intention truly was for a peaceful march, the Israelis say that having tens or hundreds of thousands of Palestinians march on Israeli civilian neighborhoods is a situation that can quickly spiral out of control.

While Jerusalem is certain to be a primary target of such a march, it is pretty heavily barricaded from the north and east, the directions from which the Palestinian protestors would be coming.

But the Jewish settlements make much softer targets.” Read more.

Race to douse a new Mideast flash point; American campaign seeks to avert clash over Palestinian bid at U.N. – “The Obama administration has begun a last-ditch diplomatic campaign to avert a confrontation this month over a Palestinian plan to seek recognition as a state at the United Nations, but it may already be too late, according to senior American officials and foreign diplomats. The administration has circulated a proposal intended to be the basis of renewed peace talks with the Israelis – based on a formula that President Barack Obama outlined in May – in hopes of persuading the Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, to abandon the bid for recognition at the annual gathering of the U.N. General Assembly beginning Sept. 20. The administration has privately made it clear to Mr. Abbas that it will veto any request that comes before the U.N. Security Council to make a Palestinian state a new member outright. But the United States alone does not have enough support to block a vote by the General Assembly to elevate the current status of the Palestinians’ nonvoting observer ‘entity’ to that of an nonvoting observer state.” Read more.

Nearly 6,000 Evacuated in New Orleans Ahead of Lee’s Heavy Rain

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“NEW ORLEANS – Around 6,000 people from Jefferson Parish in New Orleans were evacuated Saturday as Tropical Storm Lee began to pelt the Gulf Coast.

Bands of heavy rain and strong wind gusts knocked out power to thousands in south Louisiana and Mississippi and prompted evacuations in bayou towns like Jean Lafitte, where water lapped at several front doors along the main highway.

The sluggish storm stalled just before making landfall, and threatened to dump more than a foot of rain across the northern Gulf Coast and into the Southeast in coming days. No injuries were reported and there were only scattered reports of water entering low-lying homes and businesses.

The center of the slow-moving storm was about 45 southwest of Morgan City, La., Saturday afternoon, spinning intermittent bands of stormy weather, alternating with light rain and occasional sunshine. Its maximum sustained winds were 60 mph.

The National Weather Service in Slidell reported two-day rain totals approaching 9 inches in parts of south Louisiana and more than 5 inches near the Mississippi coast.

It was expected to cross the Louisiana coast Saturday and meander through the state’s southern parishes through Sunday.

Tropical storm warning flags were flying from Alabama to Texas and flash flood warnings extended along the Alabama coast into the Florida Panhandle.” Read more.


Categories: Natural Disasters

Psalms 91:1 – In Memory Of Those Lost On 9/11/2001

09/03/2011 7 comments

Though it has now been 10 years, all of us who watched the events of that day unfold remember it like it was yesterday …

Psalm 91:1-7, “He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, [He is] my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust. Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, [and] from the noisome pestilence.  He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth [shall be thy] shield and buckler. Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; [nor] for the arrow [that] flieth by day; [Nor] for the pestilence [that] walketh in darkness; [nor] for the destruction [that] wasteth at noonday. A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; [but] it shall not come nigh thee.”

Report: Turkish Navy To Significantly Strengthen Presence in Eastern Mediterranean to Pursue ‘A More Aggressive Strategy’ Against Israel

09/03/2011 7 comments

By Barak Ravid – “The Turkish navy will significantly strengthen its presence in the eastern Mediterranean Sea as one of the steps the Turkish government has decided to take following the release of the UN Palmer report on the 2010 Gaza flotilla, Turkish officials told the Hurriyet Daily News.

‘The eastern Mediterranean will no longer be a place where Israeli naval forces can freely exercise their bullying practices against civilian vessels,’ a Turkish official was quoted as saying.

As part of the plan, the Turkish navy will increase its patrols in the eastern Mediterranean and pursue ‘a more aggressive strategy’.

According to the report, Turkish naval vessels will accompany civilian ships carrying aid to Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.” Read more.

Turkey: Israel No Longer A ‘Friend’, ‘It’s Time For Israel To Pay The Price’, Israeli Ambassador and Diplomats Expelled – “Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu announced on Friday that following Jerusalem’s adamant refusal to apologize over the 2010 Gaza flotilla raid, Ankara will be downgrading its diplomatic relations with Israel and suspending key military agreements. In a dramatic turn of events, Turkey announced that it was expelling Israeli Ambassador Gabby Levy from Ankara. Davutoglu said Turkey’s diplomatic representation in Israel would be further reduced to second-secretary level. In accordance, all lower Israeli diplomatic personnel above the second-secretary level have also been expelled.” Read more.

Hamas praises Turkey for downgrading ties with Israel – “Hamas on Friday issued a statement supporting Turkey’s downgrading of ties with Israel in response to Jerusalem’s refusal to apologize for the raid of the Mavi Marmara. ‘Hamas movement welcomes the Turkish step and the dismissal of the Israeli ambassador in Turkey and sees it as a natural response to the Israeli crime committed against the Freedom flotilla and the occupation’s insistence to continue its blockade on Gaza,’ Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said.” Source.

Israel Unfazed by Turkey’s Moves: We Will Not Apologize – “Despite Turkey’s downgrade of its ties with Israel, Jerusalem remained unfazed on Friday, with officials once again clarifying that Israel has no intention of apologizing for the Mavi Marmara incident. Referring to the publication of the Palmer Report on the events of the 2010 IHH flotilla, Israeli officials said that while Israel regrets the loss of lives on the Marmara, it will not apologize for defending itself. ‘Israel, just like any other country, has the legitimate right to defend its citizens and soldiers,’ the officials said.” Read more.

Indonesia: Officials Raise Alert Level After Increased Activity at 22 Volcanoes

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By Adianto P. Simamora – “The government has requested that local administrations remain on the alert for severe risks of volcanic eruptions, as the number of volcanoes showing abnormal activity continued to raise.

As of Friday, activity in 22 volcanoes was categorized as above normal, with six at alert level three and 16 at level two. Volcano status ranges from level one, which is normal, to four, which is the highest alert.

The Volcanology and Geophysical Disaster Mitigation Center (PVMBG) raised the status of Papandayan, one of the major tourist destinations in Garut, West Java, to alert level three on Friday.

‘There were 48 shallow volcanic earthquakes detected, with one deep volcanic earthquake and a white cloud emitted as high as 20 meters on Thursday,’ National Disaster Management Agency (BNPB) spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said.

Sutopo added that his office had prepared contingency plans to anticipate worst-case scenarios if

Papandayan erupts.

‘If Papandayan erupts, it would impact 171,744 people living in the five subdistricts and 20 villages,’ he said.” Read more.

Categories: Natural Disasters

Nebraska: Dozens of Rainbow Trout Found Dead at Lake Ogallala Blamed on Lack of Oxygen

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“OGALLALA, Neb. (AP) — Authorities say a lack of oxygen has killed dozens of rainbow trout in western Nebraska’s Lake Ogallala (oh-guh-LAH’-luh) .

Nebraska Game and Parks Commission biologist Darrol Eichner told North Platte television station KNOP ( there’s a lack of oxygen in water near the lake bottom.

Eichner believes the spillway that releases water from Lake McConaughey (muh-KAHN-uh-hay) into Lake Ogallala is the problem. The mechanics of the release mechanism doesn’t allow much air to mix with the water as it is discharged from a gate at the bottom of the outlet chamber.” Read more.

Categories: Mass Animal Deaths

Major Typhoon Headed to Japan, Worries Grow About Heavy Rainfalls in Disaster Zone

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“TOKYO — A major typhoon is headed toward Japan and is expected to cross over the western and central areas of the archipelago Friday and Saturday.

The Japan Meteorological Agency said Typhoon Talas was traveling slowly at 6 miles per hour (10 kilometers per hour) on Friday. It packed winds of up to 110 mph (180 kph) and setting off downpours and strong winds.

The typhoon was expected to cause rainfalls for long periods, because of its relative slow speed. Among the rain-affected will be the northeastern part of Japan devastated by the March 11 earthquake and tsunami, and still covered in mud and rubble.” Read more.

2200 evacuated as typhoon ‘Talas’ lashes Japan – “OSAKA – Powerful typhoon made a landfall in Shikoku Island in western Japan on Saturday, forcing more than 2, 200 people to evacuate in 12 prefectures in western to central Japan, the Japan Meteorological Agency said. As of 10 amlocal time, Talas, the season’s 12th typhoon, landed in Kochi Prefecture in Shikokku Island, packing winds of up to 144 kms/h near its center, the weather agency said. The typhoon has left one dead, three missing and at least 27 people injuried across Japan, according to a NHK report. Because of the slow-moving nature of the typhoon, heavy rain and storms persist across a wide area of the Japanese archipelago, the weather agency said, warning of mudslides and floods.” Read more.

Categories: Natural Disasters

New Dispersion Model by Kyushu University Researchers Shows Level of Radiation Contamination Over North America

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“Using the supercomputer program called SPRINTARS, researchers at Kyushu University and Tokyo University created the simulation of how radioactive materials from Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant may have dispersed throughout the northern hemisphere. The researcher say their simulation fit the actual measurements.

It was published in the Scientific Online Letters on the Atmosphere (SOLA) under the title ‘A numerical simulation of global transport of atmospheric particles emitted from the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant’ in June.

You can read the paper at this link (PDF file).

You can also view the animation, here, and the press release in Japanese here.

Their simulation also shows, like France’s CEREA, radioactive materials from March 14/15 release reached the west coast of North America on March 18. The researchers attribute the rapid dispersion of radioactive materials from Fukushima to the unusually strong jet stream. Also, on March 14/15, there was a low pressure on the east cost of Japan, which created a strong updraft that lifted the radioactive materials to the jet stream.

The relative scale is set with the density of radioactive materials at Fukushima I Nuke Plant as 1. By the time it reached North America, it was between 0.000001 and 0.00000001.” Source.

Categories: Man-Made Disasters

Disasters in US: An Extreme and Exhausting Year

09/03/2011 Leave a comment

By SETH BORENSTEIN – “WASHINGTON (AP) — Nature is pummeling the United States this year with extremes.

Unprecedented triple-digit heat and devastating drought. Deadly tornadoes leveling towns. Massive rivers overflowing. A billion-dollar blizzard. And now, unusual hurricane-caused flooding in Vermont.

If what’s falling from the sky isn’t enough, the ground shook in places that normally seem stable: Colorado and the entire East Coast. On Friday, a strong quake triggered brief tsunami warnings in Alaska. Arizona and New Mexico have broken records for wildfires.

Total weather losses top $35 billion, and that’s not counting Hurricane Irene, according to the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration. There have been more than 700 U.S. disaster and weather deaths, most from the tornado outbreaks this spring.

Last year, the world seemed to go wild with natural disasters in the deadliest year in a generation. But 2010 was bad globally, and the United States mostly was spared.

This year, while there have been devastating events elsewhere, such as the earthquake and tsunami in Japan, Australia’s flooding and a drought in Africa, it’s our turn to get smacked. Repeatedly.” Read more.

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