Thursday, October 27, 2011

GEOLOGICAL UPHEAVAL: The Great Deluge - The Aftermath of the Flooding in Italy Reveals Massive Damage to Roads and Buildings!

Much of the floodwater in the Liguria and Tuscany regions of Italy has subsided to reveal massive damage.

The Liguria and Tuscany regions in the north and centre of Italy have been worst hit by the floods, with houses torn apart and cars thrown on top of each other after swollen rivers spewed torrents of muddy water through villages. One village resident said he had initially got onto his roof when the rains came down but had eventually had to brave the water and walk to safety.

"We had a flood that we never, ever saw before. The rain fell and then it was two metres high on the ground, terribly fast, we were on the roof and we had to go down and run elsewhere," said Armando Fabiani from the village of Brugnato in La Spezia. Rescue services have found it difficult to enter the worst hit areas, with roads and bridges washed away and many major thoroughfares blocked. But the search for the missing has already begun and diggers are clearing debris. Officials have said nine people died as a result of the floods. Several people are still missing. - Telegraph.
WATCH: Scenes from the aftermath.

ANCIENT ALIENS: Season 3 - Aliens and the Undead!

Ancient Aliens.
The History Channel continues its popular series on extraterrestrials, alien theorists and ancient civilizations with season three of Ancient Aliens.

The following video playlist constitutes program fourteen, entitled Aliens and the Undead and runs for 44 minutes. It examines whether the mythologies, stories and fairy-tales about soulless entities, vampires, the undead and persons trapped in a realm between life and death; are really references to scientific fact and the activities of extraterrestrials.

"Season 3 continues exploring possible connections between overall UFO phenomena and information included in ancient texts and decoded from ancient artifacts." - The History Channel.

WATCH: Aliens and the Undead.

MONUMENTAL EARTH CHANGES: One Third of Humanity Faces Biggest Risks From Climate Change - 30 Countries With "Extreme Exposure"!

A third of humanity, mostly in Africa and South Asia, face the biggest risks from climate change while rich nations in northern Europe will be least exposed, according to a report released Wednesday.

Bangladesh, India and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) are among 30 countries with "extreme" exposure to climate shift, according to a ranking of 193 nations by Maplecroft, a British firm specialising in risk analysis. Five Southeast Asian nations – Indonesia, Burma, Vietnam, the Philippines and Cambodia – are also in the highest category, partly because of rising seas and increasing severe tropical storms. Maplecroft's tool, the Climate Change Vulnerability Index (CCVI), looks at exposure to extreme weather events such as drought, cyclones, wildfires and storm surges, which translate into water stress, loss of crops and land lost to the sea. How vulnerable a society is to these events is also measured, along with a country's potential to adapt to future climate change-related hazards. Of 30 nations identified in the new report as at "extreme" risk from climate change, two-thirds are in Africa and all are developing countries.

Africa is especially exposed to drought, severe flooding and wildfires, the report says. "Many countries there are particularly vulnerable to even relatively low exposure to climate events," said Charlie Beldon, co-author of the study. Weak economies, inadequate health care and corrupt governance also leave little margin for absorbing climate impacts. At the other end of the spectrum, Iceland, Finland, Ireland, Sweden and Estonia top the list of nations deemed to be least at risk. With the exception of Israel and oil-rich Qatar and Bahrain, the 20 least vulnerable countries are in northern and central Europe. China and the United States – the world's No. 1 and No. 2 carbon emitters – are in the "medium" and "low" risk categories, respectively.

In a parallel analysis of major cities at risk, Maplecroft pointed to Dhaka, Addis Ababa, Manila, Calcutta and the Bangladesh city of Chittagong as being most exposed. Three other Indian metropolitan areas – Madras, Mumbai and New Delhi – were listed as being at "high" risk. "Vulnerability to climate change has the potential to undermine future development, particularly in India," Beldon observed. Recent studies – reviewed in a special report by the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), due out next month – point to strengthening evidence of links between global warming and extreme weather events. Record droughts in Australia and Africa, floods in Pakistan and Central America, and fires in Russia and the United States may all be fuelled in part by climate change, some experts say. Current warming trends are on track to boost average global temperatures by 5.4F (3C) above pre-industrial levels, according to some prediction. - Telegraph.

EXTREME WEATHER: Tornado Hits 2 Negros Towns in the Philippines - Destroying 67 Houses, Damaging 167 Others & Toppling Power Lines!

A tornado hit two central Negros towns in the Philippines Tuesday afternoon, destroying houses and toppling power lines and trees, although there was no casualty or injury, according to the Provincial Social Welfare and Development Office.

As of 5 p.m., 67 houses were destroyed while 167 were damaged. PSWDO chief Liane Garcia said the number of damaged houses may increase as they are still consolidating their report. The whirlwind hit barangays San Isidro, M.H. del Pilar, Miranda, Canroma and Buenavista in Pontevedra, as well as Gargato, Anahao and Cambaog in Hinigaran. Pontevedra Mayor Jose Benito Alonzo said the tornado flattened five houses in Pontevedra, toppled trees and power lines, and plunged the town into darkness Tuesday night.

The 97 affected families who were housed in different day care centers, schools and barangay halls, received assistance from the provincial and local governments, as well as Philippine National Red Cross. San Isidro barangay kagawad Bienvenido Henton said the national highway in his area was impassable for more than three hours, because of toppled power lines and trees in the highway. Witnesses said they heard a whizzing sound approaching and saw a vertically rotating column of air, which was estimated at about 50 meters high. It reportedly lasted for about three minutes, but left devastation in its wake. - Malaya.

PLANETARY TREMORS: Magnitude 6.0 Quake Strikes Fiji Region!

Map of the 6.0 magnitude earthquake that hit the Fiji Region.
A magnitude 6.0 earthquake struck the Fiji Region. The quake hit at 00:15:25 UTC, Thursday October 27, and was located at 17.914°S, 179.424°W.

Seismicity of the region.
The epicentre was at 208 km (129 miles) southeast of Lambasa, Vanua Levu, Fiji; 230 km (142 miles) easts of Suva, Viti Levu, Fiji; 312 km (193 miles) northwest of Ndoi Island, Fiji; 2177 km (1352 miles) northest of Auckland, New Zealand.

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has issued a Green Alert, for shaking-related fatalities and economic losses, with a low likelihood of casualties and damage. No tsunami warning was issued and there are no reports of any injuries or damage at this time.

GEOLOGICAL UPHEAVAL: Disappearing Islands in Chesapeake Bay!

"These two factors mean that seas rise a tenth of an inch annually, eroding about 580 acres of Maryland a year."

A combination of geological forces and climate change have raised water levels in the Chesapeake Bay in recent decades, forcing residents to leave once-habitable islands.

Holland Island was one of the largest: Historians say it had more than 360 people around 1910, with two stores, a school and a baseball team that traveled to other islands by boat. But the inhabitants' luck, and their land, would not hold. Sea levels in the Chesapeake, scientists say, are rising faster than they are in some other coastal regions of the United States. One reason is ancient: The land here has been slowly sinking for thousands of years, settling itself from bulges created by the weight of Ice Age glaciers. The weight of glaciers to the north pushed the Earth's crust down, and the crust in this area went up like the other end of a see-saw. Now, the whole region is slowly sinking again.

The other reason is modern: climate change. The Earth's oceans are rising, scientists say, because polar ice is melting, and because warmer water expands. They have noticed the effect of climate change more in the past couple of decades, government scientists say. These two factors mean that seas rise a tenth of an inch annually, eroding about 580 acres of Maryland a year, according to the state. The loss of land is all around the bay but is most noticeable on the low islands. Holland Island was especially hard-hit: Like other Chesapeake islands, it was made of silt and clay, not rock, so its land eroded readily. Today, the ragged piece of marshy land is smaller than Holland's outline in colonial times. "It's just like a dipstick," said Michael Kearney, a professor at the University of Maryland. "The water goes up, it just gets drowned." - Washington Post.
Tangier Island lies in the middle of the Chesapeake Bay and is 92 miles (148km) southeast of Washington, DC. This small piece of land is barely above sea level and its 500 residents are fighting for its survival. First settled in 1686, the island at times had over 1,200 residents and during the War of 1812 it served as a staging area for British soldiers. Now fishing restrictions, erosion and rising sea levels have resulted in most of the younger members of this tightly knit community looking for opportunities elsewhere. - BBC.
WATCH: BBC's Franz Strasser went to Tangier Island to see how the remaining islanders are coping with a difficult future.