• Eddie Rogers, Minister

True News 4 U — Earth News — 07/05/2020

In case you missed it incredible amounts of rainfall has affected untold millions of people, displaced hundreds of thousands and killed hundreds after torrential rainfall around the world in June and early July

July 3, 2020

Incredible amounts of rainfall being dumped on nations being affected by locusts swarms, credit, Earthwindmap.

While the world's attention focuses on Covid-19 and Black Lives Matter, June and early July has affected  untold millions of people, displaced hundreds of thousands and killed hundreds after torrential rainfall around the world

Torrential rains in the Yangtze river basin coupled with the release billions of tons of floodwater from the massive Three Gorges hydroelectric dam upstream have left major cities along the river submerged after record rainfall. Heavy rains in the Yangtze region have left at least a 100 people dead since May with more than 14 million people affected by the floods and decimating Chinese agriculture. Meanwhile, At least 3 people have died in flash flooding in Yunnan Province, southwest China. Heavy rain from 29 June caused flash flooding in the city of Zhaotong and the counties of Zhenxiong, Yiliang, Weixin and Yanjin. Rainfall of over 225 mm in 24 hours was reported in the area. According to local news reports, 33,380 people were affected and 8 homes damaged or destroyed. The damage was also caused to the power supply, transport and telecommunications, along with over 3,500 hectares of crops.

The flood situation continues in the state of Assam, northeast India, where disaster authorities say more than 1.4 million people are now affected. Rivers have been overflowing in the state since 20 June in the current spate of flooding. Since then 1.49 million people in 2,235 villages across 23 districts have been affected. Barpeta is still the worst-hit district, with 486,709 now people affected, an increase from 135,415 on 2 days earlier. Areas of South Salmara district have recently flooded, with 195,312 people affected. Other hard-hit areas include Dhemaji, Nalbari, Morigaon and Goalpara districts, all with between 70,000 and 100,000 residents affected.

The Flood Forecasting and Warning Centre (FFWC) in Bangladesh reports that rivers are above danger levels in 14 locations across the country, as of 30 June 2020. Seven locations are at warning level. Local media report thousands of people in Jamalpur, Kurigram and Gaibandha districts are marooned or displaced, with their homes and land submerged. According to the Dhaka Tribune, over 100,000 people in Jamalpur district have been marooned after floodwaters surrounded their homes. Over 150,000 of people in Kurigram have been affected by flooding, with wide areas of crops underwater. As of 30 June, FFWC reports that that the Brahmaputra river at Noonkhawa in Kurigram stood at 27.14 metres, above the danger mark of 26.5 metres and the Dharla in Kurigram stood at 27.46 metres, where danger levels are 26.5 metres.


Another magnificent beast in danger: 130,000 Saiga Antelopes have died this spring bringing the total to more than 350,000 in the last 5 years with experts not able to agree on the cause of deaths

July 3, 2020

Back in 2015, 200,000 wild saiga antelopes collapsed and died suddenly in Kazakhstan from a bacterial infection, more than two-thirds of the entire global population, NB, Covid-19, African Swine Fever and Avian Flu are viruses, not bacterial. Scientists found that there were unusually warm temperatures and high humidity in the days leading up to the wildlife deaths. The same was found for two previous mass die-offs of antelopes in 1981 and 1988, when 400,000 died in central Asia, according to Prof Richard Kock of the Royal Veterinary College London. Saying, "The whole thing was really extraordinary," he said. "It's very very likely to happen again."

And it has, during May and early June 2020, researchers have discovered more than half of the country's herd, around 130,000 have died. The extent and speed are really unheard of according to veterinarian Steffen Zuther who believes bacteria is to blame for the death of the saigas.

The deaths are not just occurring in Kazakhstan. Back in 2017, TBW reported nearly 1,000  saiga - tawny steppe land antelope distinguished by wacky bulbous noses and a penchant for long-distance travel - have died on the plains of western Mongolia's Khovd Province, however, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, the likely culprit is a viral infection called the Peste des Petits Ruminants (PPR), also known as ovine rinderpest or goat plague, a dread disease of domestic sheep and goats that can have a 90 per cent fatality rate.The deaths amount to almost ten per cent of the total population of this distinct Mongolian subspecies, which is less numerous and less migratory than the saiga on the other side of the Altai Mountains in Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and Russia.


Worsening drought in Puerto Rico prompts state of emergency, leaving 140,000 without running water

July 2, 2020

ETH) – Puerto Rico’s governor has just declared a state of emergency due to a worsening drought in the country that has forced the government to resort to water rationing leaving over 140,000 residents without access to running water according to The Watchers.

The report is indicating that drought conditions have rapidly expanded since May, this comes as nearly 60 percent of the country has already been under a dry spell as of June 23rd, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor.

21 out of 78 municipalities are currently suffering from moderate drought conditions, and 29 others suffering a severe dry spell, according to governor Wanda Vasquez. The report went on further to say that On May 12th, a few areas were abnormally dry but there were no spots classified in drought.

However, the conditions have expanded as rainfall deficits in parts of the country are running 102 to 203 mm (4 to 8 inches) below average over the last 30 days. The deadly drought conditions have forced 140,000 homes and businesses with water rationing, leaving water to be cut off for 24 hours every other day.

Here we go again: A mystery is unfolding in Botswana: More than 350 elephant carcasses have been found in the Okavango Delta since the start of May and no one knows why the animals are dying

July 2, 2020

Magnificent old bull elephant in the Ngorongoro crater, credit Yathin S Krishnappa - Wikipedia

An unprecedented number of dead elephant deaths have been seen in Botswana in recent months. More than 350 elephant carcasses have been found in the Okavango Delta since the start of May and no one knows why the animals are dying, with lab results on samples still weeks away, according to the government.

 Dr McCann, of the UK-based charity National Park Rescue, told the BBC local conservationists first alerted the government in early May after they undertook a flight over the delta. "They spotted 169 in a three-hour flight," he said. "To be able to see and count that many in a three-hour flight were extraordinary. "A month later, further investigations identified many more carcasses, bringing the total to over 350." "This is totally unprecedented in terms of numbers of elephants dying in a single event unrelated to drought," he added.

 Back in May, Botswana's government ruled out poaching as a reason - noting the tusks had not been removed, according to Phys.org. There are other things which point to something other than poaching."It is only elephants that are dying and nothing else," Dr McCann said. "If it was cyanide used by poachers, you would expect to see other deaths." Dr McCann has also tentatively ruled out natural anthrax poisoning, which killed at least 100 elephants in Bostwana last year. But they have been unable to rule out either poisoning or disease.


Artist's impression of the exposed core being bathed in radiation from its parent star

University of Warwick/Mark Garlick

Exposed core of ancient gas giant discovered orbiting Sun-like star

July 1, 2020

Astronomers have discovered the intact, exposed core of a gas giant locked in a close orbit around a Sun-like star. The discovery will give astronomers a rare opportunity to probe the heart of an ancient alien world, and their findings could tell us more about what lies at the heart of the gas giants in our own solar system, including Jupiter and Saturn.

The core was discovered by NASA’s Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS), which is designed to observe a vast swathe of the night sky and look out for the tiny dips in starlight that occur as planets pass between the telescope and a distant star’s surface.

TESS recorded one such fluctuation in a Sun-like star located some 730 light years from Earth. An analysis of the data revealed that the star was being orbited very closely by an object – now designated TOI 849 b – which was roughly the size of the planet Neptune in our own solar system.

According to the team, TOI 849 b is so close to its star that it completes an orbit once every 18 hours. Along with giving the strange object an incredibly short year, the tight orbit would bombard TOI 849 b with an overabundance of radiation from its parent star, resulting in a surface temperature of around 1,800 K.

The stellar companion was found to orbit in what is known as the Neptunian desert, a region of space surrounding a star where, based on current models, astronomers would not expect to find worlds larger than Neptune.


Temperature trends vary greatly over the continent of Antarctica, but scientists have found the South Pole is warming at three times the rate of the rest of the globe


South Pole is warming three times faster than the rest of the globe

June 30, 2020

While the general picture of global warming shows a regular rise in overall temperatures, some parts of the Earth are heating faster than others, with the Arctic a prime example. Scientists have now uncovered a similar accelerated trend taking place at the opposite end of the globe, with 30 years of weather data revealing the South Pole has warmed at more than three times the global rate since 1989.

The research was carried out by an international team of scientists who examined weather station data, gridded observations and climate models to assess the impact of global warming at the South Pole.

Temperatures can vary greatly over the Antarctic continent. Most of West Antarctica and the Antarctic Peninsula, where sea ice loss has recently begun to greatly accelerate, were known to be experiencing a warming trend since the late 20th century, but the South Pole was thought to be different.

This is because of its location on the remote, high-altitude region known as the Antarctic plateau, one of the coldest places on Earth. While the surrounding areas warmed up throughout the late 20th century, the South Pole actually cooled until the 1980s. But the new study shows that change is in the air.

According to the team’s analysis, the South Pole warmed by a total of 1.8 °C (3.24 °F) between 1989 and 2018, and has begun to accelerate since the start of the 2000s. For comparison, the combined land and ocean temperatures across the planet have increased at an average rate of 0.18 °C (0.32 °F) per decade since 1981, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.


Locust situation update: A posh financial and technology hub Gurugram is the latest victim of a massive locust invasion: The city is close to the Indian capital New Delhi with a population of 26 million: Swarms growing around the world

June 29, 2020

India was recently battered by a super typhoon, is currently suffering torrential rain and flooding and heatwaves as well as battling a surge in Covid-19 cases and at least five states are being overrun by massive locust swarms since the beginning of May and showing no signs of slowing down.

New footage shows a massive swarm of locusts invading the Indian city of Gurugram, located just southwest of New Delhi. The cloud of insects is a rare sight in the city – a posh financial and technology hub. The locusts descended upon the streets of Gurugram on Saturday, flying in a large, cloud-like mass and resting upon anything they pleased. The invasion was anticipated, and the local authorities urged residents to close their doors and windows beforehand.


NASA grab a decabe of sun watching into an hour on video: NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) has gathered 425 million high-resolution images of the Sun, amassing 20 million gigabytes of data over the past 10 years

June 28, 2020

As of June 2020, NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory — SDO — has now been watching the Sun non-stop for over a full decade. From its orbit in space around the Earth, SDO has gathered 425 million high-resolution images of the Sun, amassing 20 million gigabytes of data over the past 10 years. This information has enabled countless new discoveries about the workings of our closest star and how it influences the solar system.

With a triad of instruments, SDO captures an image of the Sun every 0.75 seconds. The Atmospheric Imaging Assembly (AIA) instrument alone captures images every 12 seconds at 10 different wavelengths of light. This 10-year time-lapse showcases photos taken at a wavelength of 17.1 nanometers, which is an extreme ultraviolet wavelength that shows the Sun’s outermost atmospheric layer — the corona. Compiling one photo every hour, the movie condenses a decade of the Sun into 61 minutes. The video shows the rise and fall in an activity that occurs as part of the Sun’s 11-year solar cycle and notable events, like transiting planets and eruptions. The custom music, titled “Solar Observer,” was composed by musician Lars Leonhard (https://www.lars-leonhard.de/).

While SDO has kept an unblinking eye pointed towards the Sun, there have been a few moments it missed. The dark frames in the video are caused by Earth or the Moon eclipsing SDO as they pass between the spacecraft and the Sun. A longer blackout in 2016 was caused by a temporary issue with the AIA instrument that was successfully resolved after a week. The images where the Sun is off-centre were observed when SDO was calibrating its instruments.

SDO and other NASA missions will continue to watch our Sun in the years to come, providing further insights about our place in space and information to keep our astronauts and assets safe.


Photo credit: Jingchuan Yu, Beijing Planetarium

This Creepy Cosmic Radio Burst Repeats Every 157 Days. Where Is It Coming From?

June 8, 2020

From Popular Mechanics

  • Astronomers have discovered a new type of fast radio burst (FRB).

  • FBR 121102 has a staggering 157-day cycle, according to researchers, who studied the cosmic event during a four-year observation period.

  • The team used the the Lovell Telescope at England's Jodrell Bank Observatory.

Fast radio bursts (FRB) are one of the most mysterious events in the cosmos.

These powerful bursts of energy have stumped astronomers since they first discovered them in 2007. Since then, researchers have spotted evidence of more than 100 FRBs. And now, an international study team team believes it's uncovered new information about a well-known FRB that could shed light on how they form.

Over the course of four years, the scientists used the 250-foot-wide Lovell Telescope at Jodrell Bank Observatory in England to study FRB 121102, a previously discovered repeating radio burst. They found that FRB 121102—one of two known repeating FRBs—seemed to have a peculiar cycle, flaring up after 90 days and then vanishing for 67 days.


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