Posted January 15th, 2011 10:34 AM IPBirds, Bees, and a Shark: Buzz Week in Review
By Mike Krumboltz mike Krumboltz – Fri Jan 7, 8:25 pm ET
Well, that was weird. During the first week of 2011, birds fell from the sky, a shark attacked a boat, and the bees continued their odd disappearance. Just when we think we have the animal kingdom figured out... Check out those stories and more with the Buzz Week in Review.
"The Birds" in reverse
In the Hitchcock classic, "The Birds," flocks of feathered creatures swoop down from the sky to attack helpless humans. This past week felt a bit like that movie, only the birds were dead, and the humans weren't so much terrified as they were confused. For a few days, it seemed like nobody knew what the heck was going on. Some thought the fireworks on New Year's Eve were to blame. It was later explained that, though disturbing, birds tumbling from the sky isn't all that unusual. Mass die-offs, as scientists call them, occur regularly, and while this recent rash of dead fish, crabs, and birds may seem unprecedented, the AP writes that "federal records show they happen on average every other day somewhere in North America."
Shark! Get your camera!
Three men off the coast of Western Australia got more than they bargained for on a fishing trip. While relaxing on the modestly sized boat, a great white shark appeared. At first it seemed like the shark was just checking out the boat. Doing a few circles, you know, nothing special. But then things got interesting when the shark attacked the boat's motor. Not wanting to press their luck, the fishermen returned to shore, but not before capturing their encounter on video. Web searches on "great white shark attacks boat" roared to a 882% gain.
Raw Video: Shark Terrorizes Fishing Boat
Bees continue to disappear
Bees are a nuisance, that's true. But they are also necessary for pollinating crops. So, naturally, their plummeting population has many people concerned. A popular article from Yahoo! News explained that bumblebees have died off "at an astonishing rate over the past 20 years." Experts blame inbreeding and disease. According to the article, the honey bee has also seen its numbers fall since 2006. The findings were part of a three-year study.
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Posted January 15th, 2011 10:37 AM IPFri Jan 7, 4:45 pm ET
Earth’s magnetic pole shifts, screws up runway at Florida airport
By Liz Goodwin
An airport in Tampa, Florida, has had to temporarily close its runways to keep up with Earth's magnetic north pole, which is drifting toward Russia at a rate of 40 miles per year.
Fox News reports that the international airport was forced to adjust the signs on its busiest runway Thursday because pilots depend on the magnetic fields to navigate. The runway will be closed until Jan. 13, and will re-open with new taxiway signs that indicate its new location on aviation charts, the Tampa Bay Tribune reports.
Paul Takemoto, a spokesman for the FAA, says the Earth's magnetic fields are constantly in flux -- but rarely so much so that runway signage needs to be changed. "You want to be absolutely precise in your compass heading," he told Fox. "To make sure the precision is there that we need, you have to make these changes."
[Rewind: Scary gaffe adds to week of airline mishaps]
"The Earth's poles are changing constantly, and when they change more than three degrees, that can affect runway numbering," FAA spokesperson Kathleen Bergen told Fox News. It's unclear whether any other airports will have to adjust their runways.
Earth's magnetic field, which still flummoxes those who study it, "is thought to be generated deep inside the planet," LiveScience writer Jeanna Bryner explains. "An inner core of solid iron is surrounded by an outer core of molten iron. They rotate at different rates, and the interaction between the regions creates what scientists call a 'hydromagnetic dynamo.' It's something like an electric motor, and it generates a magnetic field akin to a giant bar magnet."
Sometimes, the poles completely flip -- and presumably when that happens, many bigger changes are afoot than modest tweaks to airport signs. The last time the planet experienced a polarity flip was 780,000 years ago.
(Flight takes off from Tampa International Airport: AP)
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Posted January 15th, 2011 10:39 AM IPHubble telescope zeroes in on green blob in space
By SETH BORENSTEIN, AP Science Writer Seth Borenstein, Ap Science Writer – Mon Jan 10, 9:22 pm ET
WASHINGTON – The Hubble Space Telescope got its first peek at a mysterious giant green blob in outer space and found that it's strangely alive. The bizarre glowing blob is giving birth to new stars, some only a couple million years old, in remote areas of the universe where stars don't normally form.
The blob of gas was first discovered by a Dutch school teacher in 2007 and is named Hanny's Voorwerp (HAN'-nee's-FOR'-vehrp). Voorwerp is Dutch for object.
NASA released the new Hubble photo Monday at the American Astronomical Society meeting in Seattle.
Parts of the green blob are collapsing and the resulting pressure from that is creating the stars. The stellar nurseries are outside of a normal galaxy, which is usually where stars live.
[Related: NASA finds first Earth-like planet outside our solar system]
That makes these "very lonely newborn stars" that are "in the middle of nowhere," said Bill Keel, the University of Alabama astronomer who examined the blob.
The blob is the size of our own Milky Way galaxy and it is 650 million light years away. Each light year is about 6 trillion miles.
The blob is mostly hydrogen gas swirling from a close encounter of two galaxies and it glows because it is illuminated by a quasar in one of the galaxies. A quasar is a bright object full of energy powered by a black hole.
[Photos: Mysterious green fireball appears over Australia]
The blob was discovered by elementary school teacher Hanny van Arkel, who was 24 at the time, as part of a worldwide Galaxy Zoo project where everyday people can look at archived star photographs to catalog new objects.
Van Arkel said when she first saw the odd object in 2007 it appeared blue and smaller. The Hubble photo provides a clear picture and better explanation for what is happening around the blob.
"It actually looked like a blue smudge," van Arkel told The Associated Press. "Now it looks like dancing frog in the sky because it's green." She says she can even see what passes for arms and eyes.
[Photos: New view from space station window]
Since van Arkel's discovery, astronomers have looked for similar gas blobs and found 18 of them. But all of them are about half the size of Hanny's Voorwerp, Keel said.
Posted January 18th, 2011 08:45 AM IPThaw of Earth's icy sunshade may stoke warming
By Alister Doyle, Environment Correspondent Alister Doyle, Environment Correspondent – Sun Jan 16, 3:45 pm ET
OSLO (Reuters) – Shrinking ice and snow cover in the Northern Hemisphere is reflecting ever less sunshine back into space in a previously underestimated mechanism that could add to global warming, a study showed.
Satellite data indicated that Arctic sea ice, glaciers, winter snow and Greenland's ice were bouncing less energy back to space from 1979 to 2008. The dwindling white sunshade exposes ground or water, both of which are darker and absorb more heat.
The study estimated that ice and snow in the Northern Hemisphere were now reflecting on average 3.3 watts per square meter of solar energy back to the upper atmosphere, a reduction of 0.45 watt per square meter since the late 1970s.
"The cooling effect is reduced and this is increasing the amount of solar energy that the planet absorbs," Mark Flanner, an assistant professor at the University of Michigan and lead author of the study, told Reuters.
"This reduction in reflected solar energy through warming is greater than simulated by the current crop of climate models," he said of the findings by a team of U.S.-based researchers and published in the journal Nature Geoscience Sunday.
"The conclusion is that the cryosphere (areas of ice and snow) is both responding more sensitively to, and also driving, stronger climate change than thought," he said.
As ever more ground and water is exposed to sunlight, the absorbed heat in turn speeds the melting of snow and ice nearby.
Arctic sea ice, for instance, has shrunk in recent decades in a trend that the United Nations panel of climate scientists blames mainly on greenhouse gases from mankind's burning of fossil fuels in factories, power plants and cars.
Many studies project that Arctic sea ice could vanish in summers later this century in a trend that would undermine the hunting cultures of indigenous peoples and threaten polar bears and other animals, as well as adding to global climate change.
But Flanner said that it was impossible to draw conclusions from the study about the rate of future melting, for instance of Arctic sea ice, since it was based on only 30 years of data.
"There are a lot of other things that determine climate ... this is just one of them," he said.
Other factors include whether there will be more clouds in a warmer world -- whose white tops also reflect sunlight. Or there could be more water vapor that traps heat in the atmosphere.
The study estimated that each degree Celsius (1.8 degree Fahrenheit) rise in temperatures would mean a decline in solar energy reflected out to space of between 0.3 and 1.1 watts per square meter from the Northern Hemisphere's snow and ice.
Temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere have risen by about 0.75 degree Celsius in the past three decades. The study did not look at the Southern Hemisphere, where Antarctica has far more ice but is much colder and shows fewer signs of warming.
"On a global scale, the planet absorbs solar energy at a rate of about 240 watts per square meter averaged over a year. The planet would be darker and absorb an additional 3.3 watts without the Northern Hemisphere cryosphere," Flanner said.
Posted January 18th, 2011 08:46 AM IPFriday January 14, 2011
Climate a factor in Rome's rise and fall - study
By Alister Doyle, Environment Correspondent
OSLO (Reuters) - Climate change seems a factor in the rise and fall of the Roman empire, according to a study of ancient tree growth that urges greater awareness of the risks of global warming in the 21st century
Good growth by oak and pine trees in central Europe in the past 2,500 years signalled warm and wet summers and coincided with periods of wealth among farming societies, for instance around the height of the Roman empire or in medieval times.
Periods of climate instability overlapped with political turmoil, such as during the decline of the Roman empire, and might even have made Europeans vulnerable to the Black Death or help explain migration to America during the chill 17th century.
Climate shifts that affected farm output were factors in "amplifying political, social and economic crises", Ulf Buentgen, of the Swiss Federal Research Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research, told Reuters. He was lead author of the report in Friday's edition of the journal Science.
The review, by experts in Germany, Austria, the United States and Switzerland, extended study of tree rings 1,000 years beyond previous analyses. Thick rings indicate good growth conditions while narrow ones mean poor.
The study said the evidence, helping back up written records that are sparse in Europe more than 500 years ago, "may challenge recent political and fiscal reluctance" to slow projected climate change in the 21st century.
Modern societies seem less vulnerable but "are certainly not immune" to climate change, especially because migration "will not be an option in an increasingly crowded world", they wrote.
The U.N. panel of climate experts says that greenhouse gases, mainly from burning fossil fuels, will lead to more droughts, floods, heatwaves and rising sea levels that could swamp low-lying island states.
The study said: "Wet and warm summers occurred during periods of Roman and medieval prosperity. Increased climate variability from AD 250-600 coincided with the demise of the western Roman empire and the turmoil of the migration period."
"Distinct drying in the 3rd century paralleled a period of serious crisis in the western Roman empire marked by barbarian invasion, political turmoil and economic dislocation in several provinces of Gaul," it said.
Temperatures and rainfall only returned to levels of the Roman period in the early 800s, around the time when new kingdoms consolidated in Europe.
The Black Death bubonic plague of the mid-14th century, for instance, was during an unstable, wet period. "From other studies we know that a more humid environment is more supportive fo the dispersal of plague," Buentgen said.
Later on, "temperature minima in the early 17th and 19th centuries accompanied sustained settlement abandonment during the Thirty Years' War (1618-48) and the modern migrations from Europe to America", they wrote.
He said Europe had the best record of tree rings because of widespread wooden buildings but that the techniques could be applied elsewhere, for instance in China or the Middle East.
Posted January 18th, 2011 08:49 AM IPWhat do you think they are up too?
Taiwan's unusually public missile test fizzles
By JOHNSON LAI, Associated Press Johnson Lai, Associated Press – 2 hrs 40 mins ago
JIUPENG, Taiwan – If Taiwan's unusually public test-firing of 19 missiles Tuesday was intended as a statement following China's successful trial of a new stealth aircraft, the message came out a bit garbled.
Taiwan's president was on hand as almost a third of the missiles missed their targets, raising questions rather than reassuring the public about the self-ruled island's readiness to defend itself against an attack from the mainland.
President Ma Ying-jeou's attendance at the drills at a base in Taiwan's south was ostensibly to underscore his commitment to an effective Taiwanese deterrent, following criticism that the island's defense has been undermined by his policy of reconciling with the mainland.
However, one analyst suggested the public display was aimed at persuading Washington to sell more advanced military jets to Taiwan, whose U.S.-equipped air force long maintained an advantage over China's, but has recently been eclipsed.
Mainland China and Taiwan split amid civil war in 1949, but Beijing still claims the island as its territory and has reserved the right to invade the democratic island of 23 million people if it moves to make its de facto independence permanent — something Ma opposes.
Six of the 19 surface-to-air and air-to-air missiles failed in drills that came after China's successful test flight last week of a next-generation J-20 stealth aircraft, a system expected to further widen its growing edge over Taiwan's own equipment-starved air force.
"I'm not satisfied with the results," Ma told reporters after the missile drills. "I hope the military will find out the reasons and improve its training."
The missile tests were the first held in full view of the press for almost a decade. They were meant, Ma said, "to bring more transparency into military affairs and allow the public to view the military's readiness."
But under a cloud-speckled winter sky, six of the missiles failed to hit their targets, including one RIM-7M Sparrow, which cascaded harmlessly into the South China Sea less than 30 seconds after launch. Other missiles tested included Sky Bow IIs — which have a range of 125 miles (200 kilometers) — MIM-23 Hawks and FIM-92 Stingers.
Following China's well-publicized test of the J-20 last week, the normally pro-government United Daily News questioned Ma's policy of shifting the military's main mission away from national defense and toward disaster relief, commenting that "the more important mission for the military is to defend against threats."
The shift in military priorities, unveiled after a devastating typhoon in August 2009, reflects Ma's belief that his continuing efforts to lower tensions with China — the main theme of his 2 1/2-year-old administration — make war across the 100-mile- (160-kilometer-) wide Taiwan Strait less likely than ever before.
Defense expert Wang Kao-cheng of Taipei's Tamkang University said one purpose of Tuesday's missile test may have been to persuade the U.S. to sell Taiwan the 66 relatively advanced F-16 jet fighters that top its military wish list.
Washington is considering the request, but bitter Chinese opposition to the deal has delayed its implementation for more than two years.
"The Taiwan government may be using this exercise to send a message to the U.S. that its air defense is facing mounting pressure as China continues to develop the new generation of fighter jets," Wang said.
Taiwanese military commentators say the main function of the missiles tested Tuesday is to deter Chinese aircraft from entering the island's self-proclaimed defense zone on its side of an imaginary line that runs through the strait that separates Taiwan from the mainland.
The missiles bolster the island's aging air force, which American analysts say is becoming increasingly ill-prepared to meet the challenges of China's continuing military buildup.
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Posted January 18th, 2011 09:02 AM IPTwin Girl Miraculously Survives an AbortionA 13 year old girl was forced to get an abortion but then doctors discovered something amazing...a twin still surviving inside. Jesus had his holy hand in this inspirational story and she gives all the glory to God. http://www.godvine.com/Twin-Girl-Mi...ortion-189.htmlGod, Whose Love Is Always Stronger
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Posted January 18th, 2011 09:20 AM IPMan sues county over Ten Commandments displayBy Associated Press
Published January 14th, 2011 | Added January 14th, 2011 6:08 am
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A Johnson County man is suing the local government after officials rejected his proposal for a display on the separation of church and state in the courthouse's "public forum" area.
Ralph Stewart claims in a federal lawsuit that his county illegally promotes Christianity because it allows an approximately 3-foot-by-3-foot plaque of the Ten Commandments to hang in the courthouse lobby as part of a display on the history of American law.
Stewart's display consists of two posters titled "On the Legal History of the Separation of Church and State" and "The Ten Commandments Are Not the Foundation of American Law." The latter contains the statement, "The primary source of American law is the common and statuary law of England, NOT the Bible and NOT Christianity."
The county commission rejected Stewart's proposed display in June after consulting with the Alliance Defense Fund, a law firm dedicated to Christian advocacy.
At that meeting, Planning Commissioner Mike Tavalario said, "This is a good Christian community that welcomes people who move here. But if you want to attack God, you should leave."
Posted January 20th, 2011 06:48 AM IP. .
Mon Jan 17, 9:49 am ET
Scientists warn California could be struck by winter ‘superstorm’
By Liz Goodwin
A group of more than 100 scientists and experts say in a new report that California faces the risk of a massive "superstorm" that could flood a quarter of the state's homes and cause $300 billion to $400 billion in damage. Researchers point out that the potential scale of destruction in this storm scenario is four or five times the amount of damage that could be wrought by a major earthquake.
It sounds like the plot of an apocalyptic action movie, but scientists with the U.S. Geological Survey warned federal and state emergency officials that California's geological history shows such "superstorms" have happened in the past, and should be added to the long list of natural disasters to worry about in the Golden State.
The threat of a cataclysmic California storm has been dormant for the past 150 years. Geological Survey director Marcia K. McNutt told the New York Times that a 300-mile stretch of the Central Valley was inundated from 1861-62. The floods were so bad that the state capital had to be moved to San Francisco, and Governor Leland Stanford had to take a rowboat to his own inauguration, the report notes. Even larger storms happened in past centuries, over the dates 212, 440, 603, 1029, 1418, and 1605, according to geological evidence.
The risk is gathering momentum now, scientists say, due to rising temperatures in the atmosphere, which has generally made weather patterns more volatile.
[Video: Unusual footage of fire tornado]
The scientists built a model that showed a storm could last for more than 40 days and dump 10 feet of water on the state. The storm would be goaded on by an "atmospheric river" that would move water "at the same rate as 50 Mississippis discharging water into the Gulf of Mexico," according to the AP. Winds could reach 125 miles per hour, and landslides could compound the damage, the report notes.
Such a superstorm is hypothetical but not improbable, climate researchers warn. "We think this event happens once every 100 or 200 years or so, which puts it in the same category as our big San Andreas earthquakes," Geological Survey scientist Lucy Jones said in a press release.[
Related: Little boy becomes hero of Australian flood]
Federal and state emergency management officials convened a conference about emergency preparations for possible superstorms last week. You can read the whole report here.
(A 2005 California storm: AP)
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Posted January 20th, 2011 06:53 AM IPCan the U.S. Turn China Into a Responsible Global Player?
Jan 18 2011, 1:31 PM ET
During Chinese President Hu Jintao's visit to Washington today and tomorrow, the carefully choreographed meetings are expected to focus on "bilateral issues" in the U.S.-China relationship: namely, the two nations' currency dispute, military competition, and ongoing trade deals. But some of the most important repercussions of the U.S.-China relationship, and how Presidents Obama and Hu define it, are felt in neither Beijing nor Washington but in the far-away reaches of the world's most troubled states. China wants to become a world power and the U.S. wants to control and isolate that rise. How this tension plays out could affect -- decisively, in some cases -- nearly every other issue at the top of Obama's foreign policy agenda. This week, as the two leaders inevitably discuss the U.S. policy of "strategic containment" against China, Obama will have consider whether he prefers a weaker and less responsible China or a stronger China that just might be a bit more cooperative with the rest of the world.
Because China is so hungry to project influence and acquire resources wherever possible, and because the U.S. has been so successful at containing China's reach wherever possible, the rising power has felt compelled to do business the last places it can. Increasingly, that lands Chinese diplomats and industrial representatives in the world's nastiest rogue states. As world leaders and multinational groups deploy sanctions and diplomatic pressure to try and curb bad actors, China is almost always ready to exploit the situation. It's a familiar and deeply frustrating pattern: a rogue state acts out, the world imposes sanctions to force better behavior, and then China steps in to cut deals with the newly isolated country. It's a great deal for China, which gets bargain basement prices, and for the rogue state, which is free to continue whatever atrocious behavior earned it worldwide scorn.
Meanwhile, the Western-led global community has lost much of its ability to credibly deter bad behavior. Worst of all, the rogue state's victims -- slaughtered ethnic minorities, oppressed democratic activists -- are less likely to find reprieve. So far, China has undercut global cooperation against the regimes in North Korea, Iran, Burma, Sudan, Sri Lanka, and Zimbabwe. If international sanctions hit Côte d'Ivoire, it seems likely that China will be happy to undercut those sanctions by buying up the country's oil when prices rise this summer.
The U.S. isn't to blame for China's opportunism, of course, but we may be in a position to manage it. China has reached out to rogue states partly because it has been so stymied in East Asia, where a U.S.-led coalition of regional states, stretching from South Korea and Japan to Thailand and Indonesia, have isolated China in its own backyard. This has effectively reduced China's influence in the region, especially in the resource-rich South China Sea and its islands, but has also trained China to think of U.S.-led coalitions, whether in East Asia or in the United Nations, as antagonists. Recent polls indicate that Chinese respondents are increasingly wary of U.S. influence in East Asia, which they see as a threat. This has also accelerated the rise within Chinese politics of the People's Liberation Army -- a body far less likely to favor global cooperation or to consider Western pleas against, say, investing $40 billion in Iran.
As with so many foreign policy problems, the U.S. faces a dilemma between two uncertain and risky paths. On our current path, the U.S. minimizes China's rising global influence but, in exchange, accepts that China will continue undercutting global efforts against all but the most dangerous rogue states. In his meetings with Hu this week, however, Obama could consider a different path. By easing its containment policies, the U.S. might purchase better behavior. For example, Chinese poll respondents ranked the "Taiwan question" as the second most important issue Hu should address during his visit in Washington. It's probably a far lower priority for the U.S., which is reportedly considering a $4 billion upgrade to Taiwan's air force. Scaling back such deals, which are clear signals to China, could buy Hu's short-term cooperation on an issue important to the U.S., such isolating Côte d'Ivoire. In the long-term, it might promote greater trust between the powers, instead of reinforcing those in China who see the U.S. as a threat. This strategy would carry real dangers -- weakening staunch U.S. allies such as Taiwan, for example -- and no promise of paying out. But the current strategy is anything but safe. Whichever path the U.S. and China take, the rest of the world will be dragged along with them.
Posted January 28th, 2011 09:02 AM IPBirds Falling, Fish Dying, and Earthquakes
HEADLINES: Forty Thousand Velvet Crabs Washed up on the Coast of Great Britain. Penguins Dying and Littering the Beaches of New Zealand. Crows Falling Out of the Sky in Sweden. Eight Thousand Turtle Doves Falling Dead to the Ground in Italy. Two Million Dead Fish Washed up along the Shores of the Chesapeake Bay. That is just a few places from a much larger number of headlines.
It appears to have started on New Year’s Eve and has been escalating daily for over two weeks. Brazil is dealing with hundreds of tons of dead fish. In state after state all across America, thousands of birds and millions of fish are mysteriously dying. There are numbers of reasons being given, but the answers sound emptier than not giving any answer. Is all of it more evidence that we are quickly approaching the Great Tribulation?
I believe 2011 will be a year of signs from heaven above and earth beneath. There is a Jewish proverb that states, “Accidents are not kosher.” The earth is the Lord’s and nature is God’s system — full of warnings and signs of the time. Absolutely nothing of human life is without cause or purpose. Nature does not exist out of God’s control but is a system of balance and design. Whatever is in our Creator’s plan is played out on a daily schedule. Jesus Christ warns us of man’s failure to discern the signs of the time. He stated, “And in the morning, It will be foul weather to day: for the sky is red and lowring. O ye hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky; but can ye not discern the signs of the times?” (Matthew 16:3).
Earthquakes have always been viewed by Godly people as a warning from the Creator. The Son of God stated, “And great earthquakes shall be in divers places, and famines, and pestilences; and fearful sights and great signs shall there be from heaven” (Luke 21:11). The growing frequency of earthquakes is ominous. We are witnessing an increase of earthquakes that is above normal and that perfectly fulfills the End Time prophetic events. A scale of earthquakes over a span of the last ten years is scary. There were twenty-one earthquakes that were over a magnitude of 6.0 in the year of 2002, but there were 168 earthquakes over a magnitude of 6.0 last year in 2010.
Before the OBD radio broadcast this past Saturday, I went online at USGS to research the frequency of earthquakes. From midnight on Friday until 11:30 AM on Saturday (11.5 hours), there were twenty earthquakes over 2.5 magnitudes, nine of them were over 4.5 magnitudes. I just read a headline from Arkansas, where many of the birds and fish are dying. The state had thirty-eight earthquakes in 2009 and over 600 in 2010. Nearly 500 of them were during the months of September – December. Today, earthquakes are as clearly the voice of the Lord as the one that shook Jerusalem and Calvary when the Son of God said, “It is finished.”
Peter declared the voice of God, “And I will shew wonders in heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath” (Acts 2:19a). The media is awash with terrifying reports out of the heavens. One headline stated, “Terrifying Scientific Discovery: Strange Emissions by Sun Suddenly Mutates Matter . . .” (Project World Awareness). Another headline said, “Earth’s Magnetic Pole Shift Unleashing Poisonous Space Clouds, Linked to Mysterious Bird Deaths” (naturalview.com). This report warned that a cloud of this nature covering a major city would cause a multitude to die instantly. When you know that the infallible Scripture has warned us that this kind of End Time phenomena is going to occur, why do we fail to discern that the end is near? My friends, you must get ready to meet God!
The death of such an unprecedented number of birds and fish all over the world denies a simple problem. A just released news report gave details of the death of two hundred cows in a single pasture in Wisconsin. These all died over a span of a few days. It is impossible to call all of this anything but alarming. The Bible must always be the factor in understanding what we are facing in our world. By the Holy Ghost, an Old Testament prophet spoke and said, “I will consume man and beast; I will consume the fowls of the heaven and the fishes of the sea” (Zephaniah 1:3a).
The kind of judgments that are right before us are clear prophecies, given by the Holy Ghost and they cannot be erased. Our world is in such a slumber that the only way a Holy Ghost revival can occur is for all of us to be awakened. There is a great majority that will only hate God more as His wrath is revealed. But, a remnant will wake up and repent. That’s all we can hope for in these last hours before the Rapture.
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Posts: 13135 Registered: Mar 2009
Posted February 2nd, 2011 07:05 AM IPVolcanic lightning pictured as Mount Shinmoedake volcano in Japan erupts
Volcanic lightning is seen above Mount Shinmoedake in Japan as it erupts. It is not clear why bolts of lightning are sometimes seen within erupting volcanoes. One theory is that that the spewing magma bubbles or particles of volcanic ash are themselves electrically charged, and by their motion create separately charged areas... http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/ea...pan-erupts.htmlGod, Whose Love Is Always Stronger
Posts: 13135 Registered: Mar 2009
Posted February 2nd, 2011 07:16 AM IPDark Sky movement: British Isle Named Skywatching Paradise
The International Dark-Sky Association recognized Sark Island, which is about 80 miles off the south coast of England, for the quality of its night sky. Sark thus becomes the latest in a select group of dark sky places around the world, and the first island.
A couple enjoy some time together looking out across the sea on the Channel Island of Sark, Circa 1930.
A small, rocky chunk of land in the English Channel has been named the world's first dark sky island, a distinction awarded because its low levels of light pollution allow stunning views of the
The International Dark-Sky Association (IDA) recognized Sark Island, which is about 80 miles (129 kilometers) off the south coast of England, for the quality of its night sky. Sark thus becomes the latest in a select group of dark sky places around the world, and the first island.
Sark, which is just 3 miles long by 1.5 miles wide (4.8 by 2.4 km), has no public street lighting, no paved roads and no cars, officials said. As a result, its night sky is very dark, with the Milky Way stretching from horizon to horizon, meteors streaking overhead and countless stars on display. http://www.csmonitor.com/Science/20...tching-Paradise
Posted February 4th, 2011 08:31 AM IP1 ,500-year-old church found in Israel
Posted: Wednesday, Feb. 02, 2011
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A detail of a mosaic in the archaeological site where an ancient church was found in Hirbet Madras, central Israel, Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2011. Israeli archaeologists say they have uncovered a 1,500-year-old church, including an unusually well-preserved mosaic floor with images of lions, foxes, fish and peacocks. According to Amir Ganor of the IAA (Israel Antiquities Authority) the church in the hills southwest of Jerusalem was active between the fifth and seventh centuries A.D.
Visitors view a mosaic in the archaeological site where an ancient church was found in Hirbet Madras, central Israel, Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2011. Israeli archaeologists say they have uncovered a 1,500-year-old church, including an unusually well-preserved mosaic floor with images of lions, foxes, fish and peacocks. According to Amir Ganor of the IAA (Israel Antiquities Authority) the church in the hills southwest of Jerusalem was active between the fifth and seventh centuries A.D.
http://media.charlotteobserver.com/...filiate.138.jpg|210A detail of a mosaic in the archaeological site where an ancient church was found in Hirbet Madras, central Israel, Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2011. Israeli archaeologists say they have uncovered a 1,500-year-old church, including an unusually well-preserved mosaic floor with images of lions, foxes, fish and peacocks. According to Amir Ganor of the IAA (Israel Antiquities Authority) the church in the hills southwest of Jerusalem was active between the fifth and seventh centuries A.D.
http://media.charlotteobserver.com/...filiate.138.jpg|210A view of a mosaic in the archaeological site where an ancient church was found in Hirbet Madras, central Israel, Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2011. Israeli archaeologists say they have uncovered a 1,500-year-old church, including an unusually well-preserved mosaic floor with images of lions, foxes, fish and peacocks. According to Amir Ganor of the IAA (Israel Antiquities Authority) the church in the hills southwest of Jerusalem was active between the fifth and seventh centuries A.D.
A view of a mosaic in the archaeological site where an ancient church was found in Hirbet Madras, central Israel, Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2011. Israeli archaeologists say they have uncovered a 1,500-year-old church, including an unusually well-preserved mosaic floor with images of lions, foxes, fish and peacocks. According to Amir Ganor of the IAA (Israel Antiquities Authority) the church in the hills southwest of Jerusalem was active between the fifth and seventh centuries A.D.
HIRBET MADRAS, Israel Israeli archaeologists presented a newly uncovered 1,500-year-old church in the Judean hills on Wednesday, including an unusually well-preserved mosaic floor with images of lions, foxes, fish and peacocks.
The Byzantine church located southwest of Jerusalem, excavated over the last two months, will be visible only for another week before archaeologists cover it again with soil for its own protection.
The small basilica with an exquisitely decorated floor was active between the fifth and seventh centuries A.D., said the dig's leader, Amir Ganor of the Israel Antiquities Authority. He said the floor was "one of the most beautiful mosaics to be uncovered in Israel in recent years."
Posted February 8th, 2011 09:49 AM IPFrigid weather knocks out water in El Paso
ANGELA K. BROWN/NoneOriginally published February 6, 2011 at 4:05 p.m., updated February 6, 2011 at 6:28 p.m.
EL PASO, Texas (AP) - Frigid temperatures put some El Paso water facilities out of commission, prompting a water shortage and warnings that residents should use water only for drinking.
Some improvement had been seen in reservoir levels Sunday, City Manager Joyce Wilson told the El Paso Times on Sunday. However, El Paso Water Utilities customers have been asked to boil their drinking water and refrain from showering, using dishwaters, washing cars and other activities that might use large quantities of water.
"The bottom line is there are still a lot of breaks and leaks throughout the system," Wilson said. "The water demand, in terms of what they are pumping, is still very high compared to what it should be."
The 72 hours of sub-freezing temperatures in El Paso is unique in recent history, Wilson said.
"This has impacted everything. This community was not built for sustained sub-freezing temperatures," she said.
Meanwhile, in South Texas, marine biologists and volunteers worked urgently to try to save hundreds of sea turtles left stunned by the frigid conditions along the beaches of South Padre Island and Boca Chica, near the mouth of the Rio Grande.
Rescuers had found 575 sea turtles in hypothermic shock because of the weather, said Kat Lillie of Sea Turtle Inc. That was nearly double the record set in the 1980s, she said. Twenty died, however, and the toll was expected to rise, said Jeff George, a curator with the nonprofit turtle rescue group.
Most of the inert turtles were found on the beach, but some were rescued from the cold surf, Lillie said.
"We saved as many as possible, but there are places we couldn't access," she told the Valley Morning Star of Harlingen, Texas, for a story in Sunday editions.
Most will be released once the Gulf of Mexico surf warms, George said.
However, Super Bowl fans trying to catch flights home from Sunday's game should not find any weather-related complications, an American Airlines spokeswoman said.
There have been no flight cancellations at Fort Worth, Texas-based American's base at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport and few at its hub at Chicago O'Hare International Airport, said spokeswoman Mary Sanderson. Most of the inclement weather expected for Monday was expected to pass between the two hubs, she said.
However, she urged travelers to arrive at DFW three hours before flight time to pass through security because of the surge of homeward-bound passengers expected at the airport.
Warming weather was leaving the rest of Texas to deal with widespread water pipe breaks as more frigid temperatures loom for North and West Texas at midweek, along with the promise of sleet and snow for North Texas.
Posted February 8th, 2011 09:52 AM IPNew Mexico In State Of Emergency After Natural Gas Shortage
SUE MAJOR HOLMES 02/ 4/11 03:45 AM
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — With tens of thousands of people across New Mexico without natural gas service, Gov. Susana Martinez on Thursday declared a state of emergency, ordered government offices be shut down Friday and urged schools to "strongly consider" remaining closed for the day.
Demand has soared because of extremely cold weather across the state since Tuesday. New Mexico Gas Company said rolling blackouts in West Texas also impeded the delivery of natural gas to New Mexico.
Martinez declared a state of emergency for the entire state, urging residents to turn down their thermostats, bundle up and shut off appliances they don't need for the next 24 hours.
She later announced all state operations not providing critical services would be closed Friday to decrease the strain on energy resources throughout New Mexico.
"Due to statewide natural gas shortages, I have ordered all government agencies that do not provide essential services to shut down and all nonessential employees to stay home" on Friday, Martinez said after meeting with public safety personnel in Albuquerque.
"I have also encouraged all schools that have not already announced closures to strongly consider doing so," she said.
New Mexico Gas Company said service was disrupted throughout the state – in Bernalillo, Placitas, Taos, Questa, Red River and parts of Albuquerque, Silver City, Alamogordo, Tularosa and La Luz.
Emergency shelters were set up in several areas. Martinez said residents needing help finding a shelter or getting to one should call the non-emergency police or fire phone number in their community.
Posted February 16th, 2011 06:40 AM IPMAJOR Earth Directed X-Flare Feb 15.
God, Whose Love Is Always Stronger
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Posted February 16th, 2011 06:42 AM IPNASA craft snaps pics of comet in Valentine fling
FILE - This 2005 file rendering by artist Pat Rawlings, released by NASA, shows the Deep Impact spacecraft's encounter with comet Tempel 1. After eyeing a comet for the past four years, a NASA spacecraft will finally make its move. The Stardust craft is expected to fly within 125 miles (200 kilometers) of comet Tempel 1 on Valentine's night, Monday, Feb. 14, 2011, snapping pictures of the surface. Tempel 1 was visited by another NASA probe in 2005 when Deep Impact fired a copper bullet into the comet, excavating a crater. (AP Photo/NASA, Pat Rawlings, File)
By Alicia Chang
AP Science Writer / February 15, 2011
PASADENA, Calif.—Nearly six years after an 800-pound copper bullet excavated a crater on a comet, a NASA spacecraft revisiting the site has seen evidence of the destruction in images snapped during a Valentine's Day flyby, scientists said Tuesday. http://www.boston.com/news/science/...--+Science+newsGod, Whose Love Is Always Stronger