Italy quake deaths blamed on scientists and an ex-government official

The head of Italy’s disaster body, Luciano Maiani, has stepped down after seven colleagues were sentenced for their roles before the L’Aquila quake. Six scientists and an ex-government official were convicted of multiple manslaughter for giving a falsely reassuring statement. The 6.3 magnitude quake killed 309 people and left the city in ruins. Mr Maiani, a physicist, said the Serious… Read more →

East Coast Tropical Nightmare or Miss

Tropical Storm Sandy will soon form in the Caribbean, and scenarios for its final destination range from bypassing the East Coast to creating a nightmare for millions of people. Tropical Depression 18 formed in the central Caribbean at midday Monday and should strengthen into Tropical Storm Sandy by Tuesday. The Hurricane Center is confident the future tropical storm will then head northward… Read more →

Lorca earthquake ’caused by groundwater extraction’

Scientists studying the fault beneath the Spanish city of Lorca say that groundwater removal may be implicated in a deadly 2011 earthquake there. Detailed surface maps from satellite studies allowed them to infer which parts of the ground moved where. They report in Nature Geoscience that those shifts correlate with locations where water has been drained for years. The study highlights how… Read more →

UK experiences ‘weirdest’ weather on record

The UK has just experienced its “weirdest” weather on record, scientists have confirmed. The driest spring for over a century gave way to the wettest recorded April to June in a dramatic turnaround never documented before. The scientists said there was no evidence of a link to manmade climate change. But they say we must now plan for periodic swings… Read more →

Antarctic Sea Ice Hits Record … High?

Despite frequent headlines about a warming planet, melting sea ice, and rising oceans, climate analysts pointed to a seeming bright spot this week: During Southern Hemisphere winters, sea ice in the Antarctic, the floating chunks of frozen ocean water, is actually increasing. In fact, in late September, satellite data indicated that Antarctica was surrounded by the greatest area of sea ice ever… Read more →

Hurricane Paul to hit Baja California coast Tuesday afternoon

Hurricane Paul was expected to make landfall Tuesday afternoon along a lightly populated area of Mexico’s Baja California. Early Tuesday, the Category 2 hurricane was about 70 miles south of Cabo San Lazaro and was moving north-northeast at 21 miles per hour with maximum wind speeds of 105 mph, the U.S. National Hurricane Center reported. Up to 10 inches of rain… Read more →

Scientist warns of Fuji eruption chaos

A Japanese scientist has warned Mount Fuji is due for a “big-scale explosive eruption” that could affect millions of people and cause billions of dollars worth of damage. Last month a study found the magma chamber under the mountain has come under immense pressure, which could even trigger a volcanic eruption. It said the added pressure could have been caused by last… Read more →

UK: Homes evacuated and schools closed after wild weather sweeps country

Torrential downpours swept Britain for a second day, causing flooding in the heart of a historic market town and creating chaos on one of the country’s busiest train lines. • Parts of Scotland cut off from England by rail as services are cancelled  • Morpeth town centre flooded  • More than 100 homes evacuated  • Two babies among those killed… Read more →