Revolutions/extreme weather/spiritual awakening – sign of the times!

Manam volcano erupts in Papua New Guinea

June 18, 2013 – PAPUA NEW GUINEA – An eruption with a small ash plume was reported this morning and VAAC Darwin issued an advisory. A low level ash plume was also visible on Nasa’s Aqua Modis image at 15:45 UTC. This is the volcano’s second eruption this year. The volcano unleashed an ash cloud in early January. –Volcano Discovery

‘People Revolution’ spreads to Brazil: thousands take to streets in anti-government protests

Planetary meltdown: Stressed by the physical changes sweeping the planet, civilizations and governments, already burdened by deception, debt, inequality, and corruption could begin to crumble one by one. Change has come to planet Earth.
June 18, 2013 – BRAZIL – What started as small protests about higher bus fares has swelled into nationwide, massive anti-government demonstrations in Brazil. Last night, reports O Globo, more than 100,000 protesters filled the streets of Rio de Janeiro, while an additional 65,000 hit the streets of São Paulo. Nothing tells the story quite like this video of the streets of Rio posted by Lucio Amorim on Twitter: Reporting from São Paulo, NPR’s Lourdes Garcia-Navarro tells our Newscast unit that people on the streets are demanding that the government pay attention to them. “The cost of living here is extremely high, there’s a massive rate of inflation, and so people say that they are fed up, that they want their government to do something for them,” Lourdes said. One of the big issues is that Brazil has been gearing up for the World Cup in 2014 and the Olympics in 2016. Lourdes says people feel as though the government has been focusing on those big, international events while allowing them to languish. The New York Times says the protests are the largest and “most resonant since the nation’s military dictatorship ended in 1985.” What’s more, the Times reports, the protests share something in common with the mass protests occurring halfway across the world in Turkey. The newspaper writes: “The demonstrations in Brazil intensified after a harsh police crackdown last week stunned many citizens. In images shared widely on social media, the police here were seen beating unarmed protesters with batons and dispersing crowds by firing rubber bullets and tear gas into their midst. “The violence has come from the government,’ said Mariana Toledo, 27, a graduate student at the University of São Paulo who was among the protesters on Monday. ‘Such violent acts by the police instill fear, and at the same time the need to keep protesting.’” As CNN reports, the protests have another thing in common with Turkey: They began over something relatively small — a 9 cent increase in the price of a bus ticket. One thing that is different, reports CNN, is that President Dilma Rousseff is encouraging the protests. “Peaceful demonstrations are legitimate and part of democracy. It is right for the youth to protest,” she said in a statement. –NPR

Torrential rains kill 73 in northern India, strands 73,000

June 18, 2013 – INDIA – Rains on Tuesday claimed 11 more lives in North India, taking the toll to 73, even as 71,440 pilgrims bound for the Himalayan shrines remained stranded in monsoon-ravaged Uttarakhand, apart from 1,700 people stuck in Himachal Pradesh. Though rescue efforts picked up in flash flood and landslide-hit areas of Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand with a let-up in the rains and decrease in water level in the Ganga and its tributaries, the whole of Uttarakhand still wore a marooned and devastated look. Hundreds of homes and roads were washed away. Flash floods, cloudbursts and subsequent landslips in Uttarakhand have claimed 44 lives, left as many injured and destroyed 175 houses. Rudraprayag was the worst hit where 20 people perished and 73 buildings, including 40 hotels along the banks of the River Alaknanda, were swept away by the swirling waters. Pilgrims bound for Kedarnath, Badrinath, Gangotri and Yamunotri, are stranded in Rudraprayag, Chamoli and Uttarkashi districts with the ‘Char Dham’ yatra still suspended due to massive damage to the road network. While 27,040 devotees are stranded in Chamoli, 25,000 in Rudraprayag and 9,850 in Uttarkashi faced the same situation, said disaster management authorities. In Himachal Pradesh, chief minister Virbhadra Singh, who was stranded in tribal Kinnaur district for nearly 60 hours due to landslides, was airlifted by a chopper hired by the Congress, even as 1,700 people remained stranded at various places. In Uttar Pradesh, four persons were killed in rain-related incidents. Incessant rain held up the first two batches of the annual Kailash Mansarovar Yatra. Meanwhile, people living in low-lying areas along the River Yamuna were evacuated as its water level crossed the danger mark of 204.83 metres at 1pm and reached 205.24 metres at 2.30pm, officials in the flood and irrigation department said. –Hindustan Times

Scientists see heightened activity on farside of the Sun

June 18, 2013 – SPACE – Meanwhile on the farside of the sun, an un-numbered active region is seething with activity, and appears capable of significant eruptions. NASA’s STEREO-Behind spacecraft is stationed over the sun’s east limb with a good view of the hot spot (circled): During the early hours of June 18th, a long-duration flare from this active region hurled a coronal mass ejection (CME) over the sun’s eastern limb. However, none of the rocky planets (Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars) were in the line of fire. In a few days, the sun’s rotation will carry the active region around the eastern limb and onto the Earth-side of the sun. Then we will have a direct view of the underlying sunspot group and be able to better assess its potential for future flares. Stay tuned! –Space Weather

Violent explosion shakes Mexico’s Popcatepetl volcano

June 18, 2013 – MEXICO – Mexico’s active Popocatepetl volcano has registered a massive explosion spewing ash and incandescent rock almost 4 kilometers high. Authorities have warned that winds could blow the ash cloud as far away as Mexico City. Inhabitants of villages up to 25 kilometers from Popocatepetl (colloquially known as ‘Don Popo’) rushed out of their houses when the massive explosion reverberated through their homes. Esther Matinez, resident of Amecameca municipality, told Mexican publication La Jornada that the blast was like a rocket explosion. Around 4.5 million people live within a 50-kilometer radius of the active volcano, 650,000 of whom are considered to be at high risk. According to authorities in the state of Puebla, where the second-tallest volcano in Mexico is located, the incandescent fragments released in the blast fell as far as 2 kilometers from the crater. Director of Puebla’s Civil Protection department Jesus Morales said that burning rocks sparked small fires around the volcano. “There were clouds at the time of the eruption so it was possible to observe the large shock wave accompanied by a plume of ash and incandescent material,” Morales said. Mexico’s National Center for Prevention of Disasters (Cenapred) said the volcano had returned to its previous activity level, and that the volcanic alert level would remain at ‘yellow phase two.’ In addition, volcanic ash that was blown up to 4 kilometers into the air could be shifted by wind currents and then fall on Puebla, or even as far away as Mexico City, Cenapred warned. Popocatepetl had previously been in phase two after breaking the record for the most volcanic emissions in one day – the 5,452 –meter-tall giant gave off 300 emissions in just one day in May. In December 2000, the volcano registered one of its largest eruptions in recent history, prompting the mass evacuation of the surrounding countryside. The name Popocatepetl originates from the native Mexican Nahuatl language and means ‘smoking mountain.’ –RT

Strong 5.8 earthquake sways buildings in Mexico City

Mexico June 16
June 18, 2013 – MEXICO – A powerful two-punch earthquake shook western Mexico early Sunday, knocking out electricity and cellular phone service in parts of this sprawling capital. There were no immediate reports of serious damage or fatalities. Initial readings put the quake at a magnitude of 5.8 at around 12:30 a.m., with the epicenter about 90 miles south of Mexico City in the northern part of Guerrero state, where Acapulco is located. It was felt with marked strength in Mexico City, swaying major apartment buildings, hotels and skyscrapers. Residents scooted from their homes, some in pajamas, or filed out of late-night bars and restaurants. Many remained in the streets long after the quake ended, bracing for aftershocks. The shaking began gently, paused, then gave a good rattling to buildings in much of the capital. Mexico City Mayor Miguel Angel Mancera, whose inspectors immediately took to flight in helicopters and fanned out through city streets, said there were no reports of serious damage but that several neighborhoods were without electricity. Interior Minister Miguel Angel Osorio Chong also said there were no reports of damage at the national level. Mexico is accustomed to such quakes, and a fairly strict system of checks and controls whips into place at the first sign of serious shaking. In 1985, parts of the Mexican capital were destroyed and at least 10,000 people were killed in a devastating quake. –LA Times

Massive section of ocean floor off the coast of Portugal beginning to fracture

Major geological shift for planet: NOAA/NGDC image of the Atlantic crustal age of the ocean floor. Geologists have detected the first evidence that a passive margin in the Atlantic ocean is becoming active. The team mapped the ocean floor and found it was beginning to fracture, indicating tectonic activity around the apparently passive South West Iberia plate margin.
June 18, 2013 – GEOLOGY – A new subduction zone forming off the coast of Portugal heralds the beginning of a cycle that will see the Atlantic Ocean close, as continental Europe moves closer to America. Published inGeology, new research led by Monash University geologists has detected the first evidence that a passive margin in the Atlantic Ocean is becoming active. Subduction zones, such as the one beginning near Iberia, are areas where one of the tectonic plates that cover Earth’s surface dives beneath another plate into the mantle — the layer just below the crust. Lead author Dr João Duarte, from the School of Geosciences said the team mapped the ocean floor and found it was beginning to fracture, indicating tectonic activity around the apparently passive South West Iberia plate margin. “What we have detected is the very beginnings of an active margin — it’s like an embryonic subduction zone,” Dr Duarte said. “Significant earthquake activity, including the 1755 quake which devastated Lisbon, indicated that there might be convergent tectonic movement in the area. For the first time, we have been able to provide not only evidences that this is indeed the case, but also a consistent driving mechanism.” The incipient subduction in the Iberian zone could signal the start of a new phase of the Wilson Cycle — where plate movements break up supercontinents, like Pangaea, and open oceans, stabilize and then form new subduction zones which close the oceans and bring the scattered continents back together. This break-up and reformation of supercontinents has happened at least three times, over more than four billion years, on Earth. The Iberian subduction will gradually pull Iberia towards the United States over approximately 220 million years. The findings provide a unique opportunity to observe a passive margin becoming active — a process that will take around 20 million years. Even at this early phase the site will yield data that is crucial to refining the geodynamic models. “Understanding these processes will certainly provide new insights on how subduction zones may have initiated in the past and how oceans start to close,” Dr. Duarte said. –Daily Science












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