Saturday, May 31, 2008

MARIANA ISLANDS REG.QUAKES

4.2 Mb - MARIANA ISLANDS REGION
Preliminary Earthquake Report
Magnitude
4.2 Mb
Date-Time
30 May 2008 12:21:03 UTC
30 May 2008 22:21:03 near epicenter
30 May 2008 06:21:03 standard time in your timezone
Location
21.591N 142.982E
Depth
300 km
Distances
394 km (245 miles) SSE (154 degrees) of Iwo-jima, Volcano Islands, Japan
482 km (300 miles) NW (323 degrees) of Pagan, Northern Mariana Islands
767 km (477 miles) NNW (338 degrees) of SAIPAN, Northern Mariana Islands
1546 km (961 miles) SSE (159 degrees) of Hamamatsu, Honshu, Japan
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 12.2 km; Vertical 41.3 km
Parameters
Nph = 29; Dmin = 999.9 km; Rmss = 0.51 seconds; Gp = 154°M-type = Mb; Version = 7
Event ID
US 2008sra3

4.5 Mb - MARIANA ISLANDS REGION
Preliminary Earthquake Report
Magnitude
4.5 Mb
Date-Time
29 May 2008 15:37:37 UTC
30 May 2008 01:37:37 near epicenter
29 May 2008 09:37:37 standard time in your timezone
Location
21.590N 143.128E
Depth
321 km
Distances
400 km (249 miles) SSE (152 degrees) of Iwo-jima, Volcano Islands, Japan
473 km (294 miles) NW (325 degrees) of Pagan, Northern Mariana Islands
761 km (473 miles) NNW (339 degrees) of SAIPAN, Northern Mariana Islands
1551 km (964 miles) SSE (159 degrees) of Hamamatsu, Honshu, Japan
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 6.2 km; Vertical 12.6 km
Parameters
Nph = 86; Dmin = 903.8 km; Rmss = 0.59 seconds; Gp = 82°M-type = Mb; Version = Q
Event ID
US 2008sqbe
For updates, maps, and technical information, see:

Event Page or U.S.G.S. Earthquake Hazards Program
National Earthquake Information CenterU.S. Geological Survey

http://neic.usgs.gov/

As in the days of Noah...

Mass exodus from quake lakes area

CALIFORNIA QUAKES

3.5 Ml - NORTHERN CALIFORNIA
Preliminary Earthquake Report

Magnitude
3.5 Ml
Date-Time
30 May 2008 04:48:30 UTC
29 May 2008 21:48:30 near epicenter
29 May 2008 22:48:30 standard time in your timezone
Location
38.778N 122.767W
Depth
1 km
Distances
4 km (2 miles) ESE (123 degrees) of The Geysers, CA
7 km (4 miles) W (273 degrees) of Anderson Springs, CA
7 km (5 miles) SSW (211 degrees) of Cobb, CA
37 km (23 miles) N (352 degrees) of Santa Rosa, CA
115 km (72 miles) WNW (283 degrees) of Sacramento, CA
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 0.1 km; Vertical 0.1 km
Parameters
Nph = 97; Dmin = 1.0 km; Rmss = 0.08 seconds; Gp = 21°M-type = Ml; Version = 4
Event ID
NC 40218401 ***This event has been revised.

3.9 Ml - NORTHERN CALIFORNIA
Preliminary Earthquake Report

Magnitude
3.9 Ml
Date-Time
30 May 2008 04:48:30 UTC
29 May 2008 21:48:30 near epicenter
29 May 2008 22:48:30 standard time in your timezone
Location
38.779N 122.767W
Depth
1 km
Distances
4 km (2 miles) ESE (122 degrees) of The Geysers, CA
7 km (4 miles) W (274 degrees) of Anderson Springs, CA
7 km (5 miles) SSW (212 degrees) of Cobb, CA
37 km (23 miles) N (352 degrees) of Santa Rosa, CA
115 km (72 miles) WNW (283 degrees) of Sacramento, CA
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 0.1 km; Vertical 0.4 km
Parameters
Nph = 53; Dmin = 2.0 km; Rmss = 0.06 seconds; Gp = 61°M-type = Ml; Version = 2
Event ID
NC 40218401
For updates, maps, and technical information, see:

Event Page or U.S.G.S. Earthquake Hazards Program
CISN Northern California Management CenterU.S. Geological SurveyBerkeley Seismological Laboratory

http://www.cisn.org/ncmc.html

As in the days of Noah....

Quake survivors flee swelling lakes

PANAMA--COSTA RICA BORDER QUAKES

4.5 Mb - PANAMA-COSTA RICA BORDER REGION
Preliminary Earthquake Report
Magnitude
4.5 Mb
Date-Time
30 May 2008 06:07:47 UTC
30 May 2008 01:07:47 near epicenter
30 May 2008 00:07:47 standard time in your timezone
Location
8.555N 82.876W
Depth
31 km
Distances
51 km (31 miles) WNW (286 degrees) of David, Panama
111 km (69 miles) SW (219 degrees) of Bocas del Toro, Panama
161 km (100 miles) S (174 degrees) of Limon, Costa Rica
206 km (128 miles) SE (140 degrees) of SAN JOSE, Costa Rica
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 20.1 km; Vertical 35.6 km
Parameters
Nph = 30; Dmin = 297.8 km; Rmss = 1.18 seconds; Gp = 147°M-type = Mb; Version = 7
Event ID
US 2008sral

4.8 Mb - PANAMA-COSTA RICA BORDER REGION
Preliminary Earthquake Report
Magnitude
4.8 Mb
Date-Time
30 May 2008 05:35:42 UTC
30 May 2008 00:35:42 near epicenter
29 May 2008 23:35:42 standard time in your timezone
Location
8.444N 82.901W
Depth
35 km
Distances
51 km (32 miles) W (271 degrees) of David, Panama
122 km (76 miles) SW (216 degrees) of Bocas del Toro, Panama
174 km (108 miles) S (176 degrees) of Limon, Costa Rica
214 km (133 miles) SE (143 degrees) of SAN JOSE, Costa Rica
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 9.4 km; Vertical 0.0 km
Parameters
Nph = 134; Dmin = 303.8 km; Rmss = 1.32 seconds; Gp = 147°M-type = Mb; Version = 7
Event ID
US 2008srai

4.4 Mb - PANAMA-COSTA RICA BORDER REGION
Preliminary Earthquake Report
Magnitude
4.4 Mb
Date-Time
30 May 2008 04:02:58 UTC
29 May 2008 23:02:58 near epicenter
29 May 2008 22:02:58 standard time in your timezone
Location
8.467N 82.770W
Depth
35 km
Distances
37 km (23 miles) W (276 degrees) of David, Panama
112 km (70 miles) SSW (211 degrees) of Bocas del Toro, Panama
173 km (107 miles) S (171 degrees) of Limon, Costa Rica
221 km (137 miles) SE (140 degrees) of SAN JOSE, Costa Rica
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 12.2 km; Vertical 0.0 km
Parameters
Nph = 29; Dmin = 312.9 km; Rmss = 0.97 seconds; Gp = 147°M-type = Mb; Version = 7
Event ID
US 2008srag

4.7 Mb - PANAMA-COSTA RICA BORDER REGION
Preliminary Earthquake Report
Magnitude
4.7 Mb
Date-Time
29 May 2008 07:01:51 UTC
29 May 2008 02:01:51 near epicenter
29 May 2008 01:01:51 standard time in your timezone
Location
8.511N 82.920W
Depth
32 km
Distances
54 km (34 miles) W (279 degrees) of David, Panama
117 km (73 miles) SW (219 degrees) of Bocas del Toro, Panama
166 km (103 miles) S (176 degrees) of Limon, Costa Rica
206 km (128 miles) SE (142 degrees) of SAN JOSE, Costa Rica
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 9.9 km; Vertical 35.2 km
Parameters
Nph = 82; Dmin = 346.9 km; Rmss = 1.18 seconds; Gp = 147°M-type = Mb; Version = 6
Event ID
US 2008sqar
For updates, maps, and technical information, see:

Event Page or U.S.G.S. Earthquake Hazards Program
National Earthquake Information CenterU.S. Geological Survey

http://neic.usgs.gov/

As in the days of Noah...

Chinese battle quake lake

China says will name and shame tardy quake donors

BEIJING-China will name and shame companies which promise donations for earthquake relief efforts but then fail to live up to their pledges, a government official said on Friday.A 7.9 magnitude quake on May 12 in the southwestern province of Sichuan has killed almost 69,000 people, but has prompted an outpouring of public and corporate sympathy, money and offers of other aid such as tents, food and medicine.The government has received 35.28 billion yuan ($5.09 billion) in donations of cash and relief goods from home and abroad to date, of which just under one-third has been disbursed in the disaster zone.However, some aid has been pledged but yet to be received.
"The Ministry of Civil Affairs came out with clear rules on April 28 concerning companies which offer aid and then delay paying up," deputy head of the ministry's disaster relief office, Pang Chenmin, told a news conference."The aid ought to be given to the recipient as promised and in a timely manner. If it needs to be delayed for a day or two, they can coordinate with the relevant department," he added."But if it is not given, the recipient has the right to go after payment, and inform the public in an appropriate way," Pang said, without elaborating.The Internet has been buzzing with allegations of stingy firms, both Chinese and foreign, even as the government, state media and the companies themselves deny that this has been the case.At the same news conference, the Chinese Red Cross also denied what it said were "rumors" that its aid efforts had been compromised by waste and corruption.
To read more go to:
As in the days of Noah...

HINDU KUSH REGION,AFGHANISTAN QUAKES

4.4 Mb - HINDU KUSH REGION, AFGHANISTAN
Preliminary Earthquake Report
Magnitude
4.4 Mb
Date-Time
28 May 2008 23:27:51 UTC
29 May 2008 03:57:51 near epicenter
28 May 2008 17:27:51 standard time in your timezone
Location
37.083N 71.133E
Depth
108 km
Distances
50 km (31 miles) E (92 degrees) of Feyzabad, Afghanistan
61 km (38 miles) SW (215 degrees) of Khorugh, Tajikistan
151 km (94 miles) SE (127 degrees) of Kulob (Kulyab), Tajikistan
264 km (164 miles) SE (130 degrees) of DUSHANBE, Tajikistan
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 25.6 km; Vertical 21.9 km
Parameters
Nph = 14; Dmin = 339.5 km; Rmss = 0.96 seconds; Gp = 176°M-type = Mb; Version = Q
Event ID
US 2008spcn

4.3 Mb - HINDU KUSH REGION, AFGHANISTAN
Preliminary Earthquake Report
Magnitude
4.3 Mb
Date-Time
26 May 2008 01:11:19 UTC
26 May 2008 05:41:19 near epicenter
25 May 2008 19:11:19 standard time in your timezone
Location
36.495N 70.746E
Depth
122 km
Distances
69 km (43 miles) SSE (167 degrees) of Feyzabad, Afghanistan
130 km (81 miles) WNW (303 degrees) of Chitral, Pakistan
135 km (84 miles) SSW (211 degrees) of Khorugh, Tajikistan
240 km (149 miles) NW (323 degrees) of Mingaora, Pakistan
261 km (162 miles) NNE (32 degrees) of KABUL, Afghanistan
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 32.1 km; Vertical 24.9 km
Parameters
Nph = 7; Dmin = 266.2 km; Rmss = 0.37 seconds; Gp = 187°M-type = Mb; Version = Q
Event ID
US 2008smaf
For updates, maps, and technical information, see:

Event Page or U.S.G.S. Earthquake Hazards Program
National Earthquake Information CenterU.S. Geological Survey


As in the days of Noah...

China report of quake lake evacuation denied

MIANYANG, China-China's state news agency said on Friday 1.3 million people had been ordered to move to higher ground for fear a "quake lake" caused by this month's devastating earthquake could burst its mud and rock dam, but the announcement was immediately denied by an official spokesman.Tan Li, Communist Party Secretary of Mianyang city, "issued an order that 1.3 million people living downstream from Tangjiashan, a swelling quake-induced lake, must evacuate to higher ground marked by government bodies", Xinhua news agency said, specifying the threat of flooding and strong aftershocks.But Zhou Hua, a Mianyang city official who is spokesman for the lake relief effort,told Reuters the Xinhua report was inaccurate."There is a virtual training exercise scheduled for tomorrow to test our contingency plan to move that many people," he said."But there is no public participation, and we see no reason at all to actually implement the plan at this stage."The landslide-blocked river at Tangjiashan in southwest China is now the most pressing danger after an earthquake devastated the region on May 12.
As in the days of Noah....

RECENT PERU QUAKES

4.6 Mb - NEAR COAST OF CENTRAL PERU
Preliminary Earthquake Report

Magnitude
4.6 Mb
Date-Time
30 May 2008 06:53:41 UTC
30 May 2008 01:53:41 near epicenter
30 May 2008 00:53:41 standard time in your timezone
Location
14.199S 75.880W
Depth
43 km
Distances
20 km (13 miles) SSW (205 degrees) of Ica, Peru
88 km (54 miles) SSE (162 degrees) of Chincha Alta, Peru
199 km (124 miles) WNW (287 degrees) of Puquio, Peru
266 km (165 miles) SSE (152 degrees) of LIMA, Peru
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 22.4 km; Vertical 12.6 km
Parameters
Nph = 68; Dmin = 265.7 km; Rmss = 0.93 seconds; Gp = 140°M-type = Mb; Version = Q
Event ID
US 2008sram ***This event has been revised.

4.9 Mb - CENTRAL PERU
Preliminary Earthquake Report
Magnitude
4.9 Mb
Date-Time
30 May 2008 06:53:43 UTC
30 May 2008 01:53:43 near epicenter
30 May 2008 00:53:43 standard time in your timezone
Location
13.938S 75.802W
Depth
48 km
Distances
11 km (6 miles) N (359 degrees) of Ica, Peru
65 km (40 miles) SSE (147 degrees) of Chincha Alta, Peru
188 km (117 miles) WSW (243 degrees) of Ayacucho, Peru
245 km (152 miles) SSE (147 degrees) of LIMA, Peru
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 23.6 km; Vertical 10.5 km
Parameters
Nph = 45; Dmin = 243.3 km; Rmss = 0.64 seconds; Gp = 212°M-type = Mb; Version = 7
Event ID
US 2008sram

5.4 Mb - CENTRAL PERU
Preliminary Earthquake Report
Magnitude
5.4 Mb
Date-Time
28 May 2008 21:39:05 UTC
28 May 2008 16:39:05 near epicenter
28 May 2008 15:39:05 standard time in your timezone
Location
13.058S 74.414W
Depth
81 km
Distances
22 km (13 miles) NW (304 degrees) of Ayacucho, Peru
138 km (86 miles) SE (142 degrees) of Huancayo, Peru
185 km (115 miles) NE (54 degrees) of Ica, Peru
305 km (190 miles) ESE (111 degrees) of LIMA, Peru
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 10.3 km; Vertical 12.1 km
Parameters
Nph = 178; Dmin = 289.1 km; Rmss = 0.73 seconds; Gp = 104°M-type = Mb; Version = 6
Event ID
US 2008spcc
For updates, maps, and technical information, see:

Event Page or U.S.G.S. Earthquake Hazards Program
National Earthquake Information CenterU.S. Geological Survey


As in the days of Noah....

Chinese quake investigator pinpoints school failings

BEIJING-An official investigator has said one of the schools that crumpled during China's earthquake, killing hundreds, was fatally weakened by poor design and materials, adding weight to grieving parents' claims of deadly failings.The death toll from the May 12 earthquake centered in southwest China's Sichuan province is more than 68,500 and is sure to rise with 20,000 missing. Based on calculations from Chinese news reports, the dead include at least 9,000 students and teachers whose schools fell or were buried under landslides.Many parents have said their children were crushed in shoddy school buildings that toppled while nearby apartments and government offices stayed upright.Chen Baosheng, an expert from Tongji University in Shanghai, told a Chinese newspaper that was certainly true of the Juyuan Middle School, where hundreds of children died."There were certainly problems with site selection, the building's structure and structural features, the construction and materials," Chen, a member of an investigation team under the Ministry of Construction, told the Southern Weekend.Steel reinforcement rods in the building's concrete were too thin, and pillar supports were not properly attached, Chen said."It was to be expected that a building like this collapsed in an earthquake and it would have been strange only if it didn't," he added.The public acknowledgement comes as grieving parents begin to demand compensation and criminal investigations. One of those parents at Juyuan, Dong Tianjian, said they were retaining lawyers and considering taking their demands to Beijing.
To read more go to:
As in the days of Noah....

RECENT JAPAN QUAKES 5/28--5/31/2008

4.8 Mb - HOKKAIDO, JAPAN REGION
Preliminary Earthquake Report
Magnitude
4.8 Mb
Date-Time
31 May 2008 06:23:54 UTC
31 May 2008 15:23:54 near epicenter
31 May 2008 00:23:54 standard time in your timezone
Location
43.358N 145.862E
Depth
105 km
Distances
126 km (78 miles) ENE (69 degrees) of Kushiro, Hokkaido, Japan
263 km (164 miles) SW (218 degrees) of Kuril'sk, Kuril Islands
284 km (176 miles) E (98 degrees) of Asahikawa, Hokkaido, Japan
1002 km (623 miles) NNE (30 degrees) of TOKYO, Japan
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 10.8 km; Vertical 8.6 km
Parameters
Nph = 25; Dmin = 267.3 km; Rmss = 0.56 seconds; Gp = 169°M-type = Mb; Version = 7
Event ID
US 2008ssaw

5.0 Mb - NEAR EAST COAST OF HONSHU, JAPAN
Preliminary Earthquake Report

Magnitude
5.0 Mb
Date-Time
31 May 2008 05:03:33 UTC
31 May 2008 14:03:33 near epicenter
30 May 2008 23:03:33 standard time in your timezone
Location
36.559N 141.611E
Depth
30 km
Distances
85 km (53 miles) SE (132 degrees) of Iwaki, Honshu, Japan
103 km (64 miles) ENE (78 degrees) of Mito, Honshu, Japan
165 km (103 miles) SE (142 degrees) of Fukushima, Honshu, Japan
194 km (121 miles) ENE (59 degrees) of TOKYO, Japan
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 13.8 km; Vertical 33.9 km
Parameters
Nph = 43; Dmin = 304.8 km; Rmss = 1.14 seconds; Gp = 126°M-type = Mb; Version = 7
Event ID
US 2008ssar

4.6 Mb - SOUTHEAST OF RYUKYU ISLANDS
Preliminary Earthquake Report
Magnitude
4.6 Mb
Date-Time
30 May 2008 18:09:43 UTC
31 May 2008 03:09:43 near epicenter
30 May 2008 12:09:43 standard time in your timezone
Location
24.994N 128.009E
Depth
35 km
Distances
135 km (84 miles) SSE (165 degrees) of Naha, Okinawa, Japan
390 km (243 miles) E (79 degrees) of Ishigaki-jima, Ryukyu Islands, Japan
1368 km (850 miles) NNE (31 degrees) of MANILA, Philippines
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 17.9 km; Vertical 0.0 km
Parameters
Nph = 30; Dmin = 704.1 km; Rmss = 1.21 seconds; Gp = 140°M-type = Mb; Version = 6
Event ID
US 2008srcx

4.5 Mb - RYUKYU ISLANDS, JAPAN
Preliminary Earthquake Report
Magnitude
4.5 Mb
Date-Time
30 May 2008 20:56:15 UTC
31 May 2008 05:56:15 near epicenter
30 May 2008 14:56:15 standard time in your timezone
Location
25.024N 127.981E
Depth
35 km
Distances
131 km (81 miles) SSE (166 degrees) of Naha, Okinawa, Japan
388 km (241 miles) E (79 degrees) of Ishigaki-jima, Ryukyu Islands, Japan
1369 km (851 miles) NNE (31 degrees) of MANILA, Philippines
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 21.2 km; Vertical 0.0 km
Parameters
Nph = 25; Dmin = 702.1 km; Rmss = 1.30 seconds; Gp = 147°M-type = Mb; Version = 6
Event ID
US 2008srcw

5.1 Mb - RYUKYU ISLANDS, JAPAN
Preliminary Earthquake Report
Magnitude
5.1 Mb
Date-Time
30 May 2008 18:11:47 UTC
31 May 2008 03:11:47 near epicenter
30 May 2008 12:11:47 standard time in your timezone
Location
25.104N 127.980E
Depth
35 km
Distances
122 km (76 miles) SSE (165 degrees) of Naha, Okinawa, Japan
390 km (242 miles) ENE (78 degrees) of Ishigaki-jima, Ryukyu Islands, Japan
1377 km (856 miles) NNE (31 degrees) of MANILA, Philippines
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 8.9 km; Vertical 0.0 km
Parameters
Nph = 51; Dmin = 654.6 km; Rmss = 1.12 seconds; Gp = 115°M-type = Mb; Version = 6
Event ID
US 2008srbw

5.0 Mb - RYUKYU ISLANDS, JAPAN
Preliminary Earthquake Report

Magnitude
5.0 Mb
Date-Time
30 May 2008 17:43:06 UTC
31 May 2008 02:43:06 near epicenter
30 May 2008 11:43:06 standard time in your timezone
Location
25.112N 127.986E
Depth
35 km
Distances
122 km (76 miles) SSE (165 degrees) of Naha, Okinawa, Japan
390 km (243 miles) ENE (78 degrees) of Ishigaki-jima, Ryukyu Islands, Japan
1378 km (856 miles) NNE (31 degrees) of MANILA, Philippines
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 12.1 km; Vertical 0.0 km
Parameters
Nph = 55; Dmin = 655.4 km; Rmss = 1.13 seconds; Gp = 126°M-type = Mb; Version = 6
Event ID
US 2008srbq

5.6 Mw - IZU ISLANDS, JAPAN REGION
Preliminary Earthquake Report

Magnitude
5.6 Mw
Date-Time
30 May 2008 07:25:43 UTC
30 May 2008 16:25:43 near epicenter
30 May 2008 01:25:43 standard time in your timezone
Location
30.775N 141.558E
Depth
40 km
Distances
306 km (190 miles) SSE (147 degrees) of Hachijo-jima, Izu Islands, Japan
416 km (258 miles) N (351 degrees) of Chichi-shima, Bonin Islands, Japan
553 km (344 miles) SSE (147 degrees) of Shizuoka, Honshu, Japan
569 km (354 miles) SSE (162 degrees) of TOKYO, Japan
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 6.2 km; Vertical 17.0 km
Parameters
Nph = 102; Dmin = 711.0 km; Rmss = 0.86 seconds; Gp = 57°M-type = Mw; Version = 7
Event ID
US 2008srap ***This event supersedes event AT00213234.

4.7 Mb - EASTERN HONSHU, JAPAN
Preliminary Earthquake Report
Magnitude
4.7 Mb
Date-Time
28 May 2008 16:41:59 UTC
29 May 2008 01:41:59 near epicenter
28 May 2008 10:41:59 standard time in your timezone
Location
39.104N 140.488E
Depth
6 km
Distances
78 km (48 miles) SSE (153 degrees) of Akita, Honshu, Japan
88 km (55 miles) SW (219 degrees) of Morioka, Honshu, Japan
101 km (63 miles) NNW (340 degrees) of Sendai, Honshu, Japan
388 km (241 miles) N (9 degrees) of TOKYO, Japan
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 11.7 km; Vertical 26.7 km
Parameters
Nph = 44; Dmin = 348.1 km; Rmss = 0.70 seconds; Gp = 158°M-type = Mb; Version = Q
Event ID
US 2008spbh
For updates, maps, and technical information, see:

Event Page or U.S.G.S. Earthquake Hazards Program
National Earthquake Information CenterU.S. Geological Survey


As in the days of Noah....

China says Taiwan quake aid welcome

BEIJING/TAIPEI-China said on Friday that it was happy to accept earthquake aid from its sometimes bitter diplomatic rival Taiwan, after the self-ruled island complained its huge neighbor had refused to accept its donations.A spokesman for China's Taiwan Affairs Office said the government had received or been promised more than 800 million yuan ($115.3 million) in cash and other donations from Taiwan business people, both in China and in Taiwan.The 7.9 magnitude quake on May 12 in the southwestern province of Sichuan killed more than 68,000 people, and thousands more bodies are estimated to be still buried under the rubble."I want to tell the people of Taiwan you can set your minds at ease. We will certainly send your aid to the disaster zone," spokesman Yang Yi told a news conference in Beijing.But a spokeswoman for Taiwan's Mainland Affairs Council said China had snubbed T$770 million ($25.3 million) in quake aid donations collected by the Taiwan government for more than two weeks.The money, earmarked for quake area reconstruction work, included T$700 million in government funds and another T$70 million from private Taiwan donors, including numerous ordinary citizens, the spokeswoman said.Taiwan did not know why China had ignored its aid, she added."They haven't replied to the letter we sent, but we'll keep contacting," she said.
To read more go to:
As in the days of Noah....

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Two years on, Indonesia mud volcano still flowing

PORONG, Indonesia-Two years after a mud volcano started erupting on Indonesia's Java island, thousands of people who lost their homes are still living in squalid makeshift shelters with no signs the flow of sludge is about to stop soon.On May 29, 2006, hot noxious grey mud began spewing from a gas exploration site in the industrial district of Sidoardjo in East Java, forming what is now known as the Lusi mud volcano.The mud has now displaced more than 50,000 people and submerged homes, factories and schools and is now flowing at a rate of more than 100,000 cubic-meters a day."We don't sleep well at night. We hardly have anything to eat," said Widariana, one of more than 2,000 people who have lived in a market converted into shelters for the displaced.Some scientists say the mudflow, near the country's second-biggest city, Surabaya, was caused by a gas drilling operation by energy firm PT Lapindo Brantas.Lapindo disputes that the disaster, which started two days after a huge earthquake in Central Java, was caused by drilling.PT Energi Mega Persada indirectly controls Lapindo, which holds a 50 percent stake in the Brantas block from where the mud came. PT Medco Energi International Tbk holds a 32 percent stake and Australia-based Santos Ltd the rest.The government has ordered Lapindo to pay 3.8 trillion rupiah in compensation to the victims and to cover the damage. Lapindo has agreed to compensate the victims in two stages and has so far disbursed 20 percent of the compensation cash, with the rest to be paid this month."Dozens of us are begging on the streets of Porong. Four groups take turns begging day and night," said Sunarto, who led a group of displaced people from one village buried by the mud.On Thursday, thousands of victims held a prayer gathering and laid flowers at the site to mark the second anniversary of the mudflow. They also demanded they be given cash compensation immediately.
RIGHTS VIOLATIONS
The National Commission on Human Rights said in a statement the treatment of the mudflow victims amounted to rights violations, accusing both Lapindo and the government of indifference. Lapindo has stopped giving food rations to the displaced since the start of this month, saying that displaced residents should accept the compensation being offered."They can't live there forever. They should immediately submit documents and accept the compensation," said company spokeswoman Yuniwati Teryana.Victims have refused to move away from the area, saying they want cash compensation at one go to build their own houses.New research by a team from Durham University UK and the Bandung Institute of Technology in Indonesia found the mud volcano is collapsing and could subside to depths of over 140 meters.Such sudden collapses could be the beginning of a caldera, a large basin-shaped volcanic depression, Durham University said.
"This could continue to have a significant environmental impact on the surrounding area for years to come," said research co-author Richard Davies in a statement from Durham.Chalid Muhammad from leading Indonesian green group Walhi told a news conference on Thursday the disaster was "the worst environmental crime of the century".A spokesman for a government team tasked with handling the disaster, Ahmad Zulkarnaen, said flammable gas had begun coming out from the ground in residential areas not affected by the mud.The government has tried several schemes to halt the flow, including dropping giant concrete balls into the crater, but the mud continues to spurt.The situation has also become a bigger embarrassment for the government since PT Energi Mega Persada Tbk is owned by the Bakrie Group, controlled by the family of chief social welfare minister, Aburizal Bakrie.The Bakrie family last year topped the Forbes' list for the wealthy in Indonesia."Why can't Aburizal Bakrie just set aside a little of his wealth for the people of Porong for the sake of his family's good name," said Bambang Kuswiyanto, one of displaced victims.($1 = 9,295 rupiah)

As in the days of Noah....

Earthquake rocks Iceland damaging buildings

"EVERYTHING WAS SHAKING"
Selfoss rescue team worker Soffia Sigurdardottir said all available teams were out helping people, visiting hospitals, schools and other sites. "People are mostly shocked and scared but no one is seriously injured so far," she said.At the famous Blue Lagoon hot springs resort, several kilometers from the epicenter, receptionist Kristrun Bragadottir said she had experienced similar tremors before. "I felt it. And it is not good."Residents also felt the impact in Europe's northernmost capital."I am in Reykjavik... everything was shaking. The glass in the windows shook and everybody was just really scared," said economist Audbjorg Olafsdottir.The Iceland Meterological Office said Thursday's was the strongest quake to hit the country since two large quakes in 2000, which followed 88 years of relative seismic inactivity."This is by far the largest since then," said Einar Kjartansson, a geophysicist at the office. The main quake was followed by several smaller aftershocks, he said.Iceland sits on two shifting plates far beneath the earth's surface, known as the Eurasian plate and the North American plate, which are moving away from each other, not converging, Kjartansson said.The strongest quakes tend to happen where plates are knuckling up against each other, as they do in California.Iceland, a North Atlantic island halfway between Europe and North America, has a population of about 300,000.Some four-fifths of its rocky surface is uninhabited. It was first settled by Vikings from Norway in the ninth century A.D.
As in the days of Noah...

Rains in China Hamper Work to Clear Earthquake Lakes

Heavy rain in China's Sichuan province disrupted efforts to drain lakes that are threatening survivors of the country's deadliest earthquake in 32 years.The weather is preventing helicopters carrying earthmoving equipment from flying through the mountainous region, where a lake in Tangjiashan is putting 33 townships at risk, state-run Xinhua News Agency reported. The China Meteorological Administration today issued a heavy rain warning for northeast Sichuan, including the disaster zone.About 160,000 people are being relocated and the government may have to evacuate as many as 1.3 million after landslides caused by the May 12 quake blocked rivers, creating 35 lakes. Some of them are threatening to burst their banks.The death toll from the quake rose to 68,516 people with 19,350 missing, the State Council Information Office's spokesman, Lu Guangjin, said today. More than 15 million people were displaced in the disaster.The Finance Ministry allocated a further 1 billion yuan ($144 million) to work on the lakes and reinforcing dams damaged in the quake, it said in a statement.It earlier allocated 400 million yuan for the work.About 600 military engineers and soldiers, using 29 excavators and bulldozers, were working today through heavy rain to clear debris at the Tangjiashan lake, the biggest formed in Sichuan, and dig a diversion channel, Xinhua said.The area is inaccessible by road and can be reached only on foot or by air.
Mountain Collapsed
The lake contains 130 million cubic meters (34 billion gallons) of water and was created when a part of a mountain collapsed into the Jianhe River.Forty people close to starvation were rescued from a remote village in the mountains, 16 days after the disaster, the China Metropolitan Daily reported today.They were stranded by landslides caused by the quake, highlighting the difficulties in accessing the area which sits in the foothills of the Tibetan plateau.A 5-magnitude quake struck at 12:48 p.m. today, the U.S. Geological Survey said on its Web site, the latest aftershock to hit the area. The aftershocks are disrupting excavation on the lakes and bringing down more rubble from torn mountainsides.A magnitude 6 quake on May 25 left at least 8 people dead and brought down thousands of buildings already weakened by the main temblor.
Protests Start
Protests have started in some towns near the epicenter with parents surrounding officials and demanding to know why their children died in schools that may have been built below standard, the International Herald Tribune reported today.An estimated 10,000 children died in the disaster, many in schools that were destroyed while buildings around them were left unscathed, the IHT said. Party officials promised grieving parents the schools would be investigated.Most people in China are restricted to one child per family to help slow population growth in the world's most populous country. Protests are rare in China.The government said it will impose harsh penalties on those who withhold or embezzle donations and supplies to the disaster zone, Xinhua reported.The National Audit Office has received almost 400 reports of misuse or corruption related to relief efforts after announcing a special hotline, according to Zhao Pin in the office's News Department.China's General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine has collected samples of materials such as steel and cement from destroyed schools and has no results so far, the agency's deputy head, Zhi Shuping, said at a news conference in Beijing today.
Collapsing Schools
"Seeing schools collapse and so many students crushed has made everyone very sad, and they naturally think about the issue of the schools' quality,'' Zhi told reporters."If the damage is really caused by a quality problem, we will take severe measures.''China has received aid supplies, relief workers and medical staff from more than 40 countries, Zhi Shuping, the deputy director of China's Administration for Quality Supervision,Inspection and Quarantine, said today. Donations worth 37.3 billion yuan have been received from domestic and overseas sources, State Council spokesman Lu said today.Of that, 10.4 billion yuan has been delivered to Sichuan.Japan will send three C130 military transport planes to China carrying tents and blankets as early as May 31, the Asahi newspaper reported today.South Korean President Lee Myung Bak will travel to Sichuan tomorrow to see the disaster zone, the first overseas head of state to visit the area, according to a statement on the presidential office's Web site.The earthquake was the most powerful to hit China since a magnitude 8.6 quake struck Tibet in 1950, killing 1,526 people.A 7.5 magnitude temblor in Tangshan in the northeast killed 250,000 in 1976, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. China's seismology department said the Sichuan quake had a magnitude of 8.
By Dune Lawrence and Aaron Sheldrick

As in the days of Noah...

China Readies Evacuation Plan, Should Landslide Dam Burst

QING LIAN, China-It is a simple strand of red plastic hanging between two trees, but for residents of this battered town, it is the line between life and potential death.On one side are 11,000 residents who have been huddling under plastic sheets since the May 12 earthquake devastated northern Sichuan Province. On the other is a lush plain of farmland and homes that government officials say will be washed away should a swollen reservoir of trapped river water break through the wall of rock, dirt and trees that holds it in place. Soldiers stand sentinel on roads leading to the flood plain, which includes much of this picturesque town, blocking residents eager to till their fields or salvage clothing from quake-damaged homes.“It’s for their own good,” said Bian Dedi, 43, who was patrolling the deserted downtown on Thursday and shooing away the few residents who had slipped through the cordon. “In an instant, everything you see would be under water.”For the past three days, a phalanx of earth-moving machines and soldiers have been struggling to complete a 300 yard sluice that would relieve pressure on a lake growing behind a landslide dam on the Jian River. On Thursday, the lake, dubbed Tangjiashan, rose another five feet, to about 70 feet short of the top of the barrier, and officials warned it might take another three days before the drainage canal was complete. For the 1.3 million people living downstream, the looming threat is adding to the misery of those coping with a disaster that has already killed 68,500 people and injured 87,000. Officials say another 19,000 are missing and presumed dead.In recent days, 160,000 people have been relocated from low-lying towns and villages and the government has set in place an ambitious evacuation scheme that would send more than a million people dashing to higher ground should the dam break.If that happens, experts say, it is likely to strike suddenly. "Once that process starts, it’s virtually impossible to do anything to decrease the water,” Alexander Densmore, a seismologist at Durham University in Britain, told Reuters. “When they fail, they tend to fail catastrophically."Here in Qing Lian, a tourist town that straddles the Jian River shortly after its descent from the mountains, residents have been forced to disassemble and rebuild their bamboo-and-plastic shelters five times over the past two weeks. Each move coincided with the worrisome expansion of the impounded lake, which is 30 miles upstream. “I may be old but I can still run if I have to,” said Chen Biqi, 70, a farmer who has been instructed to hike up a nearby knoll should the dam burst.Compared to the terror of the earthquake, many people here view the potential peril of flooding as an annoyance, just one more indignation meted out by nature. Most expressed confidence that the government’s evacuation plan would keep them from harm’s way.“Earthquakes are unpredictable but at least we would have some warning if a flood is coming,” said Cheng Huayuan, 65, a retired factory worker who was among thousands of people camped out in Mianyang, a city of 600,000 that stretches out along both sides of the Jian River.Like many of her neighbors, Ms. Cheng has a home, but she said she is too unnerved by the constant aftershocks to sleep in her 8th floor apartment.“You never know if the next tremor will bring the building down,” she said. “A flood we can handle.”Not everyone is so confident.At Mianyang’s long-distance bus station, thousands of people clamored to board buses headed to other cities on Thursday. Hundreds of others sought shelter atop a forested hill a mile outside the city.Even though she is only a half-hour walk to the safety of the mountains, Deng Huilan, 45, said she often spends the night nodding off in a chair. “I don’t dare fall into a deep sleep,” said Ms. Deng, who is sharing a tent with a dozen family members, including her 80-year-old parents. “None of us can swim.”
As in the days of Noah....

China Agrees to Japanese Airlift

SHANGHAI-China acknowledged Thursday that it was willing to receive disaster relief assistance from Japan’s Self-Defense Forces in what would be the first Japanese military air mission to China since the end of World War II. Word of discussions on military aid between the countries was first reported in Tokyo on Wednesday, when Japanese officials said they had received a request for airlifted assistance from China and were preparing to respond.The Japanese officials said the Chinese request had not been detailed, but China’s greatest need was presumed to be for tents and other emergency shelter materials.In speaking publicly of the talks on aid between the countries for the first time on Thursday, Chinese officials would not say whether Beijing had requested a Japanese airlift or Japan had offered it.“If the Japanese Self-Defense Forces are ready to provide assistance, then the specifics will be discussed by the two countries’ defense departments,” a Foreign Ministry spokesman, Qin Gang, said in a briefing.The diplomatically vague language reflects the depth of Chinese sensitivity over relations with Japan, given the brutality of Japan’s wartime occupation of China.Relations between the countries were particularly strained this decade when Japan was led by Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi. Mr. Koizumi made a frequent practice of visiting the Yasukuni shrine to Japan’s war dead, which holds the remains of many wartime leaders who were executed as war criminals.Relations have rebounded strongly under the current prime minister, Yasuo Fukuda. This month, China’s president, Hu Jintao, made a five-day trip to Japan, in the first state visit in a decade.
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/30/world/asia/30japan.html?_r=1&partner=rssnyt&emc=rss&oref=slogin
As in the days of Noah...

VOLCANO Still Spewing Toxic Mud TWO Years After It Erupted.

Hundreds of Indonesians have been displaced by the mud volcano in Sidoarjo, East Java.Two years after erupting there is still enough mud spilling out to fill 60 Olympic swimming pools a day. Around 100,000 cubic metres of hot, stinking sludge oozes from the mystifying volcano every day.It burst through the earth two years ago during deep drilling at a nearby exploratory well.
http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/article1222945.ece


As in the days of Noah...

6.1 Mw - ICELAND

Preliminary Earthquake Report
Magnitude
6.1 Mw
Date-Time
29 May 2008 15:46:01 UTC
29 May 2008 15:46:01 near epicenter
29 May 2008 09:46:01 standard time in your timezone
Location
64.026N 20.985W
Depth
10 km
Distances
50 km (31 miles) ESE (106 degrees) of REYKJAVIK, Iceland
119 km (74 miles) NW (306 degrees) of Vik, Iceland
230 km (143 miles) SW (218 degrees) of Akureyri, Iceland
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 4.7 km; Vertical 0.0 km
Parameters
Nph = 206; Dmin = 82.2 km; Rmss = 0.88 seconds; Gp = 64°M-type = Mw; Version = 6
Event ID
US 2008sqba ***This event supersedes event AT00207596.
For updates, maps, and technical information, see:
Event Page or U.S.G.S. Earthquake Hazards Program
National Earthquake Information CenterU.S. Geological Survey
http://neic.usgs.gov/
As in the days of Noah...

Strong Quake Shakes Iceland

REYKJAVIK, Iceland-A powerful earthquake shook Iceland on Thursday, rocking buildings in the capital, touching off landslides and forcing residents in outlying towns to evacuate. Channel 2 television reported injuries, though it was not immediately clear how many.The U.S. Geological Survey said the 6.1 magnitude quake hit at 3:46 p.m., with its epicenter near the town of Selfoss, 30 miles east, southeast of the capital, Reykjavik. Sharp aftershocks are feared in the southwest of the country within the next few hours, and police traveled around the nearby town of Hveragerdi, 28 miles east of Reykjavik, with a bullhorn, advising residents to stay outdoors.Amateur video footage aired on the national broadcaster RUV television showed rocks tumbling down the sides of jagged peaks in Vestmannaeyjum, a small archipelago off the south coast of Iceland. Residents in the capital felt buildings shake. The road between Reykjavik and Selfoss was closed by quake damage, RUV said.Don Blakeman, an earthquake analyst at the U.S. Geological Survey in Boulder, Colorado, said earlier, less reliable readings had indicated the quake could have been as powerful as a magnitude 6.7."It looks like a 6.1 or a 6.2," he said by telephone. "As this part of Iceland sits on the north Atlantic ridge, it's not uncommon for there to be earthquakes."
As in the days of Noah....

Iceland shaken by magnitude 6.1 earthquake

REYKJAVIK, Iceland-A strong earthquake shook southern Iceland on Thursday, damaging roads and buildings and causing some injuries, officials and local media said.Channel 2 television cited civil protection authorities as saying the quake caused injuries, but it was not immediately clear how many.The U.S. Geological Survey said the magnitude 6.1 quake hit at 3:46 p.m., with its epicenter near the town of Selfoss, 30 miles east- southeast of the capital, Reykjavik. The Icelandic Geological Survey said it measured 6.3 on the Richter scale.Residents in the capital felt buildings shake.Iceland's national broadcaster RUV radio reported no injuries but said buildings had been damaged near the epicenter. Authorities advised residents in the area to leave their homes because of the possibility of aftershocks.The road between Reykjavik and Selfoss was closed by quake damage, RUV said.Iceland, population 300,000, is a geologically unstable volcanic island in the north Atlantic.The country's last major earthquake, in June 2000, measured 6.6 on the Richter scale. It knocked down a dozen houses but caused no serious injuries.
http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=D90VFA7G0&show_article=1&catnum=0
As in the days of Noah...

Earthquake rocks Iceland, damages buildings

SELFOSS, Iceland-A strong earthquake rocked Iceland on Thursday, damaging roads and buildings in one town and sending frightened residents running into the streets.Police in Selfoss, 31 miles southeast of the capital Reykjavik, said they had received no reports of injuries and that damage to buildings in the area had been relatively minor.The U.S. Geological Survey said the quake struck at 3:46 p.m. (11:46 p.m. EDT), 6.2 miles beneath the earth's surface.In Selfoss, a small southwestern town near the quake's epicenter, dozens of panicking people poured into the streets."I didn't know what was happening. All of a sudden, I felt the ground moving and saw the shelves shaking and walls in the store shaking," said Kolbrun Sigurdardottir, a clothing store clerk in the town."I ran out into the street, which was filled with people. A pregnant lady next to me was terrified. We're still shaking with nerves, but I'm glad everybody is okay," she told Reuters.Iceland is renowned for its fierce geophysical temper. The island, which sits on a fault line, is dotted with geysers and volcanoes. Earthquakes of magnitudes up to 7.1 have shaken the island in the past.The quake hit a day before a planned visit to Iceland by U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. State Department spokesman Sean McCormack, who was with Rice at a conference in Sweden on Thursday, said the visit would go ahead.
"EVERYTHING WAS SHAKING"
Selfoss rescue team worker Soffia Sigurdardottir said all available teams were out helping people, visiting hospitals, schools and other sites. "People are mostly shocked and scared but no one is seriously injured so far," she said.At the famous Blue Lagoon hot springs resort, several kilometers from the epicenter, receptionist Kristrun Bragadottir said she had experienced similar tremors before. "I felt it. And it is not good."Residents also felt the impact in Europe's northernmost capital."I am in Reykjavik ... everything was shaking. The glass in the windows shook and everybody was just really scared," said economist Audbjorg Olafsdottir.The Iceland Meterological Office said Thursday's was the strongest quake to hit the country since two large quakes in 2000, which followed 88 years of relative seismic inactivity. "This is by far the largest since then," said Einar Kjartansson, a geophysicist at the office. The main quake was followed by several smaller aftershocks, he said.Iceland sits on two shifting plates far beneath the earth's surface, known as the Eurasian plate and the North American plate, which are moving away from each other, not converging, Kjartansson said.The strongest quakes tend to happen where plates are knuckling up against each other, as they do in California.Iceland, a North Atlantic island halfway between Europe and North America, has a population of about 300,000.Some four-fifths of its rocky surface is uninhabited. It was first settled by Vikings from Norway in the ninth century A.D.
http://www.reuters.com/article/topNews/idUSL2914573420080529?feedType=RSS&feedName=topNews&rpc=22&sp=true
As in the days of Noah...

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Volcanic ash causes Chile to cancel some flights

SANTIAGO-Ash from the Chaiten volcano that has been erupting in Chile for nearly a month led the country's flagship airline LAN to cancel flights to a string of small airports on Wednesday. Winds initially carried most of the ash from the volcano east into Argentina, but it is now being carried north within Chile. Ash clogs jet engines.The airline did not say when flights to Puerto Montt, Temuco, Valdivia and Osorno would resume. LAN accounts for more than half of Chile's international passenger traffic and nearly three-quarters of its domestic traffic. Chaiten volcano, 760 miles south of the capital Santiago, started erupting on May 2 for the first time in thousands of years, spewing ash, gas and molten rock. Experts have said it could erupt at a less volatile pace for months and even years.Thousands of people living near the volcano have been evacuated.Earlier in May, Argentina suspended some flights on its side of the remote Patagonia region that straddles the south of the two countries because of ash from the eruption. Chile's chain of some 2,000 volcanoes is the world's second-largest after Indonesia's.
As in the days of Noah...

River Threatens China Quake Survivors

CHENGDU, China-Faced with the prospect of massive flooding from a blocked river in the highlands of Sichuan Province, the authorities have announced plans to evacuate more than a million people should the rock-and-mud embankment give way, a threat that grew more urgent on Wednesday. The herculean task of moving so many people, officials said, would have to be accomplished within four hours, the time it would take for the wall of water to inundate scores of cities and rural villages that are already grappling with the devastation caused by the May 12 earthquake.Officials spent Wednesday rehearsing plans to move people from several urban areas, many of them swollen with refugees from neighboring towns and mountain hamlets. The Chinese media described evacuation drills on Wednesday that involved shuttling a few thousand people to higher ground, although it was unclear how the authorities would move so many people if the dam suddenly gave way. In Jiangyou, a city of 300,000 people, everyone would have to be moved to safety within 70 minutes, according to The Morning News.“The efforts are aimed at getting all the 1.3 million residents on the move within four hours in case the quake lake bank fully opens, with zero deaths in the process of evacuation,” said the head of quake relief operations in the city of Mianyang, which has a population of 600,000. “Otherwise, it will mean a breach of duty on our part as government employees.”Officials on Wednesday raised the quake’s death toll by 1,000, to 68,100; 21,000 people are still listed as missing.Engineers and soldiers spent a second frantic day trying to alleviate pressure on the barrier lake at Tangjiashan, a swelling body of water that has been rising behind an avalanche that clogged the Jian River, two miles upstream from the city of Beichuan. Because the dam is inaccessible by road, the army has been using helicopters to fly in 30 excavators and bulldozers.Officials said that 600 workers have been toiling around the clock to dig a sluice that would drain away some of the water, a task that could take at least five days, Yang Hailiang, an official in charge of the operation told the official news agency Xinhua. With rain in the forecast, emergency officials have been ramping up evacuation plans.In recent days at least 160,000 people have been moved from low-lying areas, and the prospect of moving hundreds of thousands of others is likely to further strain a government struggling to provide food, water and shelter to the 15 million whose homes were destroyed.In Tongkou, the closest settlement to the dam, villagers set up a system of gongs and fireworks to warn one another of a deluge. During a practice run in Jiangyou, 1,000 people were moved in 50 minutes. In Mianyang, officials used loudspeakers to broadcast evacuation routes.
During an earthquake relief cabinet meeting in Beijing on Tuesday, Hui Liangyu, a vice premier, expressed urgency, saying “any negligence will cause new disasters to people who have already suffered through the quake,” Xinhua reported. During the same meeting, Prime Minister Wen Jiabao told ministers that alleviating the risk of flooding from 34 so-called quake lakes was “the most pressing task” for the government. Officials also announced that $29 million in emergency funds would be allocated to the effort.One water resources official told Agence France-Presse that the evacuations were moving too slowly. “Sometimes local governments think that evacuation is too much trouble, and they’re betting it won’t really be necessary, because they’re not sure how big the risk might be,” he said.Cai Qihua, a local water management official, told The China Daily that the water was quickly approaching the top of the rubble wall, rising nearly seven feet a day. He said 75 feet remained until the water reached the top of the dam, although it is not clear whether that would cause the barrier to crumble. Scientists have estimated that the lake contains more than 450 million cubic feet of water.The threat of flooding comes as the authorities struggle with the aftermath of what officials say is China’s biggest natural disaster in 30 years.On Wednesday, Japanese officials said they were considering a Chinese request to provide tents and blankets to refugees currently living under tarps and bridges. During a press conference in Tokyo, Nobutaka Machimura, Japan’s chief cabinet secretary, said it was unclear whether Beijing would allow the Japanese military aircraft to deliver aid. If so, it would mark the first time that the military would touch down on Chinese soil since Japan’s brutal World War II occupation.During the cabinet meeting in Beijing on Tuesday, the ministers said the government’s relief efforts had reached a “new stage,” one that should focus on burying the dead, feeding the living and preventing an outbreak of disease through an extensive inoculation campaign. They also said work should begin on reconstruction, including the restoration of crippled industries.The ministers, however, suggested that some badly damaged towns might never be rebuilt. They said residents would be relocated, although they provided no further details. According to Xinhua, the state council urged that “social order should be maintained in the quake zones.”In several towns, parents continued to agitate for a speedy government investigation into why so many schools collapsed during the earthquake, killing thousands of students and teachers. In Shifang, more than 300 parents whose children died at the Jiandi Middle School protested at the gates of the local government, according to Boxun News.In Dujiangyan, a group of 500 parents gathered at a tent temporarily housing the city’s education bureau and demanded that provincial officials investigate why the Xin Jian school collapsed, killing at least 300 children. They also asked that those responsible be punished and that bereaved parents receive compensation.According to the father of a 9-year-old girl who died at the school, about a dozen parents were allowed to talk to officials, although they left feeling dissatisfied.“They only offered some hollow ‘official talk,’"said the man, who would give only his surname, Qin.Encouraged by another group of parents who protested in Mianzhu on Sunday, Mr. Qin said the parents would stage their own “mourning” rally on June 1, which is Children’s Day in China, a national holiday. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/29/world/asia/29china.html?_r=1&partner=rssnyt&emc=rss&oref=slogin
As in the days of Noah....

China Quake : Building Bridges Back Into Villages

China Works to Clear Roads to Reach Quake Survivors

CHENGDU, China-China struggled to keep roads open to provide a lifeline for quake survivors, while the government warned Wednesday that rebuilding after the disaster would be "arduous."The magnitude 7.9 quake that struck May 12 sent dirt and rocks tumbling into valleys, blocking roads to hinder relief efforts and clogging rivers that have developed into fast-rising lakes."We are racing against time to repair damaged infrastructure," said Mu Hong, a deputy director at the National Development and Reform Commission, the country's top economic planning body, adding that some roads were only reopened on a temporary basis."The high risk of mudslides and landslides makes our efforts more difficult," he said.In the disaster zone, 158,000 people have been evacuated and dozens of villages emptied in case the newly formed Tangjiashan lake bursts before soldiers and engineers can drain it, state media said Wednesday.At the riverside Tongkou village downstream from the lake, residents had been moved to a camp up the hill but were returning each day to tend to their fields."If the water comes down from the burst dam, somebody will launch a fireworks signal to give us warning so everybody can run uphill," said villager Wang Hongyun. "Without seeing the warning, we will keep on gathering our crops."Troops used explosives to clear debris and helicopters to airlift heavy moving equipment to dig drainage channels from the lake, located about 2 miles above the devastated town of Beichuan. Forty machines, including excavators, are at the site, which is unreachable by road, and hundreds of troops are working around the clock to build the channel, the official Xinhua News Agency reported.Yang Hailiang, the official heading the operation, said the teams were making good progress thanks to clear weather, and that they were one-third of the way through the job, Xinhua said.Premier Wen Jiabao told a meeting of the State Council, China's Cabinet, that handling the danger from the swelling lakes was the "most pressing task" in the disaster recovery effort, the newspaper said.The government has allocated $28.6 million to deal with the swelling lakes, Xinhua said. Of 34 lakes created by the earthquake in the mountainous province, 28 were at risk of bursting, according to the agency. Government officials said earlier that the recovery effort would take three years in hard-hit Sichuan province."Due to the immense magnitude of loss resulted from the quake, production recovery and reconstruction of the quake-hit region will be arduous in the near future," the commission said in a statement. Meanwhile, the number of confirmed deaths from the quake climbed toward an expected toll of more than 80,000. China's Cabinet said Wednesday that 68,109 people were killed, with 19,851 still missing.In Japan, officials said China had asked Japanese soldiers to deliver earthquake relief aid in what would be the first significant military dispatch between the two countries since World War II.Beijing has allowed foreign rescue and medical experts from several countries to help in the relief operation — a switch from China's usual approach of preferring to handle internal matters on its own."Our understanding is that the request is to fly a plane belonging to the Self Defense Forces to deliver its tents and blankets to a Chinese airport," Chief Cabinet Secretary Nobutaka Machimura said. "A decision shouldn't take too long, and we are working on it now."Japan invaded China and set up a puppet regime in Manchuria in 1932, then conquered larger areas of the country before being defeated by the Allies in 1945. Many Chinese still resent Japan for its military aggression at that time.Though postwar relations between China and Japan have been rocky, the two countries have grown closer in the past 18 months.

As in the days of Noah....

5.3 Mb - ANTOFAGASTA, CHILE

Preliminary Earthquake Report
Magnitude
5.3 Mb
Date-Time
28 May 2008 17:35:28 UTC
28 May 2008 13:35:28 near epicenter
28 May 2008 11:35:28 standard time in your timezone
Location
21.684S 68.304W
Depth
119 km
Distances
111 km (69 miles) NE (35 degrees) of Calama, Chile
248 km (154 miles) SE (130 degrees) of Iquique, Chile
307 km (191 miles) NE (44 degrees) of Antofagasta, Chile
1155 km (718 miles) WNW (288 degrees) of ASUNCION, Paraguay
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 8.8 km; Vertical 0.0 km
Parameters
Nph = 164; Dmin = 597.1 km; Rmss = 0.88 seconds; Gp = 133°M-type = Mb; Version = 6
Event ID
US 2008spbb
For updates, maps, and technical information, see:
Event Page or U.S.G.S. Earthquake Hazards Program
National Earthquake Information CenterU.S. Geological Survey
http://neic.usgs.gov/

As in the days of Noah....

4.6 Mb - JUJUY, ARGENTINA

Preliminary Earthquake Report
Magnitude
4.6 Mb
Date-Time
26 May 2008 20:20:17 UTC
26 May 2008 17:20:17 near epicenter
26 May 2008 14:20:17 standard time in your timezone
Location
22.789S 66.234W
Depth
207 km
Distances
160 km (99 miles) NNW (344 degrees) of San Salvador de Jujuy, Argentina
206 km (128 miles) SW (228 degrees) of Tarija, Bolivia
233 km (145 miles) NNW (340 degrees) of Salta, Argentina
912 km (567 miles) WNW (286 degrees) of ASUNCION, Paraguay
Location Uncertainty
Horizontal: 16.2 km; Vertical 15.9 km
Parameters
Nph = 27; Dmin = 746.1 km; Rmss = 0.97 seconds; Gp = 104°M-type = Mb; Version = Q
Event ID
US 2008smbd
For updates, maps, and technical information, see:
Event Page or U.S.G.S. Earthquake Hazards Program
National Earthquake Information CenterU.S. Geological Survey


As in the days of Noah....