Global fuel prices jump as Harvey's impact ripples beyond U.S. Gulf

reuters.com - Erwin Seba and Devika Krishna Kumar - August 31st 2017

Tropical Storm Harvey’s impact on the energy industry spread worldwide as flooded U.S. refiners and closed fuel pipelines threatened to squeeze national supply, roiling global fuel markets and rerouting millions of barrels of fuel to the Americas to avert shortages.

The storm, which lashed Louisiana with rain on Thursday, has pummeled the U.S. Gulf Coast, immersing Houston, Texas, and the surrounding area in several feet of water and forcing the closure of about a quarter of U.S. refining capacity.

Benchmark U.S. gasoline prices RBc1 and margins RBc1-Clc1 surged anew on Thursday.

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Report: Trump Dissolves Climate Change Advisory Panel

cbsnews.com - by Rebecca Shabad - August 21, 2017

The Trump administration has decided to dissolve a federal advisory panel that contributes to a report that measures the current and future impacts of climate change on the U.S., The Washington Post reports.

The acting administrator for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Ben Friedman, informed the chair of the advisory committee that the agency would not renew its charter, which expired Sunday, the report said. This comes two years after NOAA formed the panel, called the Advisory Committee for the Sustained National Climate Assessment, whose 15 members were tasked with advising government and private sector stakeholders on navigating climate change.

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Federal Advisory Committee for the Sustained National Climate Assessment
http://sncaadvisorycommittee.noaa.gov

Membership - Appointments
http://sncaadvisorycommittee.noaa.gov/Membership

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Direct Relief - Medical Aid Shipment to Sierra Leone

Direct Relief - August 18, 2017

Direct Relief is sending 10,000 lbs of medical aid to Sierra Leone in response to the recent floods and mudslides.  Items including antibiotics, wound care and rehydration supplies left Direct Relief's warehouse today. Water purification supplies and oral rehydration salts will also be sent to help communities that have lost access to clean water.

CLICK ON THE LINK BELOW - VIDEO AND ORIGINAL POST

https://www.facebook.com/DirectRelief/videos/10155613349934346/

 

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Zika Linked to Rising Tide of Serious Neurologic Complications in Adults

CLICK HERE - JAMA Neurology - Neurologic Complications Associated With the Zika Virus in Brazilian Adults

medscape.com - by Nancy A. Melville - August 15, 2017

A rising tide of serious neurologic complications among adults in Brazil has been linked to the spread of the Zika virus, new research shows.

"Our study is the first prospective study assessing the occurrence of neurological complications in adults secondary to Zika virus infection, with all previous data based solely on case series and case reports," senior author, Osvaldo Jose Moreira do Nascimento, MD, PhD, from the Neurology Department at Universidade Federal Fluminense, Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, told Medscape Medical News.

"We observed an increase in the admissions of patients with inflammatory complications, such as Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS), myelitis and encephalitis."

The study was published online August 14 in JAMA Neurology.

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CLICK HERE - Neurological complications associated with Zika virus in adults in Brazil

 

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Texas Doctors Under-Test for Zika

CLICK HERE - CDC MMWR - Notes from the Field: Zika Virus-Associated Neonatal Birth Defects Surveillance — Texas, January 2016–July 2017

Zika birth defects reported in 8% of zika infected Texas mothers

zikanews.com - by Don Ward - August 12, 2017

Zika virus testing for both travel-related cases and local transmission, need increased surveillance from Texas physicians, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

A recent CDC analysis found that 57% of infants or fetuses for whom Zika testing was indicated, did not receive tests.

This is important because 8% of Texas infants or fetal losses were delivered with lab-confirmed Zika.

The Texas birth defect rate of 8% compares with 5.5% for the entire USA, and 4.4% in USA territories.

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Alaskan Towns at Risk from Rising Seas Sound Alarm as Trump Pulls Federal Help

           

Residents of Shishmaref voted to relocate to the mainland, but in common with other Alaskan towns, there is no clear source of funding to do this. Photograph: Andrew Burton/Getty Images

Communities in danger of falling into the sea say assistance from Washington has dried up: ‘It feels like a complete abdication of responsibility on climate change’

theguardian.com - by Oliver Milman - August 10, 2017

The US government’s withdrawal from dealing with, or even acknowledging, climate change may have provoked widespread opprobrium, but for Alaskan communities at risk of toppling into the sea, the risks are rather more personal.

The Trump administration has moved to dismantle climate adaptation programs including the Denali Commission, an Anchorage-based agency that is crafting a plan to safeguard or relocate dozens of towns at risk from rising sea levels, storms and the winnowing away of sea ice.

Federal assistance for these towns has been ponderous but could now grind to a halt, with even those working on the issue seemingly targeted by the administration.

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Sierra Leone Floods Kill Hundreds as Mudslides Bury Houses

       

People may have been asleep when mudslides occurred

bbc.com - August 15, 2017

More than 300 people have been killed in mudslides and flooding near Sierra Leone's capital, Freetown.

A hillside in the Regent area collapsed early on Monday following heavy rains, leaving many houses covered in mud.

A BBC reporter at the scene said many people may have been asleep when the mudslide occurred.

The number of casualties is expected to rise. Locals were reportedly trying to recover bodies from the rubble and mud with their bare hands.

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CLICK HERE - Hundreds killed after Sierra Leone mudslide

CLICK HERE - Hundreds Feared Dead After Mudslide In Sierra Leone

CLICK HERE - Hundreds feared dead in Sierra Leone mudslide

 

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Polio Update: More cVDPV2 Reported in Syria, DRC

           

CLICK HERE - GPEI - THIS WEEK - Polio this week as of 9 August 2017

outbreaknewstoday.com - August 12, 2017

Additional cases of type 2 circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus (cVDPV2) have been reported recently in both Syria and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), according to the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) this week.

Syria

Three new cases of circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus type 2 (cVDPV2) were officially confirmed at WHO headquarters in the past week, bringing the total number of cases in this outbreak to 30. Onset of paralysis of these cases is between 3 March and 16 June. Twenty-nine of the cases are from Mayadeen district, Deir Ez-Zour governorate, and one case is from Talabyad district, Raqqa governorate.

Democratic Republic of the Congo

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Yemen Cholera Epidemic: Cases Exceed 500,000 in Four Months

           

More than 99% of people infected who can access health services are surviving

The number of suspected cases of cholera resulting from an epidemic in war-torn Yemen has reached 500,000, the World Health Organization (WHO) says.

CLICK HERE - WHO - Cholera count reaches 500 000 in Yemen

bbc.com - August 14, 2017

At least 1,975 people have died since the waterborne disease began to spread rapidly at the end of April.

The WHO said the overall caseload had declined since July, but that 5,000 people a day were still being infected.

The disease spread due to deteriorating hygiene and sanitation conditions and disruptions to the water supply.

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http://resiliencesystem.org/hospitals-brink-cholera-kills-184-yemen’s-capital-mere-days

 

 

 

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Wildfires Hit Greenland After Record Temperatures

           

This satellite photograph depicts the wildfire raging in Greenland, as seen from space last week. - NASA Earth Observatory

phys.org - August 14, 2017

Police in Greenland warned people to stay away from western areas of the island as wildfires scorched swathes of scrubland . . . 

 . . . Denmark's meteorological service BMI said the island registered its hottest-ever temperature of 24.8 degrees (77 Fahrenheit) on August 10.

Last year was Greenland's hottest on record.

The Danish territory has lost about 4,000 gigatons of ice since 1995, British researchers said in June, making ice melt on the huge island the biggest single contributor to rising sea levels.

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PHOTOS: A 'Massive' Wildfire Is Now Blazing In Greenland
http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/08/08/542305822/photos-a-massive-wildfire-is-now-blazing-in-greenland

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Climate Report: Hottest Year, Highest Greenhouse Gas Marks, Record Sea Levels

CLICK HERE - American Meteorological Society - State of the Climate in 2016 - Special Supplement to the - Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society - Vol. 98, No. 8, August 2017 - (298 page .PDF report)

cnn.com - by Steve Almasy - August 10, 2017

The records highlighted in the "State of the Climate in 2016" report from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration sound ominous.

• Global land surface temperatures last year were highest in 137 years of record keeping.

• Sea surface temperatures were also at their highest.

• Sea levels were at record highs in the 24 years that satellite record keeping has been used.

• Greenhouse gas marks rose faster than any year and carbon dioxide readings were above a 400 parts per million average for the year for the first time.

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Government Report Finds Drastic Impact of Climate Change on U.S.

           

A draft report by government scientists concludes that Americans are feeling the effects of climate change right now. Credit Branden Camp/Associated Press

(The Final Fifth-Order Draft is also available for download within the attachment near the bottom of this post.)

CLICK HERE - DRAFT - U.S. GLOBAL CHANGE RESEARCH PROGRAM CLIMATE SCIENCE SPECIAL REPORT (CSSR) - Final Clearance - 28 June 2017 - Fifth-Order Draft (5OD) (669 page .PDF report)

CLICK HERE - DRAFT - U.S. GLOBAL CHANGE RESEARCH PROGRAM CLIMATE SCIENCE SPECIAL REPORT (CSSR) - Third-Order Draft (TOD) - (1217 page .PDF report)

nytimes.com - by Lisa Friedman - August 7, 2017

The average temperature in the United States has risen rapidly and drastically since 1980, and recent decades have been the warmest of the past 1,500 years, according to a sweeping federal climate change report awaiting approval by the Trump administration.

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'Dodgy' Greenhouse Gas Data Threatens Paris Accord

           

The air monitoring station at Jungfraujoch, in Switzerland, has detected the Italian emissions for nine years

bbc.co.uk - by Matt McGrath - August 7, 2017

Potent, climate warming gases are being emitted into the atmosphere but are not being recorded in official inventories, a BBC investigation has found.

Air monitors in Switzerland have detected large quantities of one gas coming from a location in Italy.

However, the Italian submission to the UN records just a tiny amount of the substance being emitted.

Levels of some emissions from India and China are so uncertain that experts say their records are plus or minus 100%.

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Utilities companies won't let you sell your own solar power. Why not?

The electric utility sector is broken – but the transformation we need will be virtually impossible so long as a handful of wealthy elites are calling the shots

           

Utilities companies have their sights on ending net-metering: your ability to sell excess power at market rates. Photograph: Rex

CLICK HERE - REPORT - Energy and Policy Institute - Utilities Knew: Documenting Electric Utilities’ Early Knowledge and Ongoing Deception on Climate Change From 1968-2017

theguardian.com - by Kate Aronoff - August 1, 2017

A new report from the US-based Energy and Policy Institute last week found that investor-owned utilities have known about climate change for nearly 50 years – and done everything in their power to stop governments from doing anything about it.

From their commitment to toxic fuels to their corrosive influence on our democracy to their attempts to price-gouge ratepayers, it’s long past time to bring the reign of privately-owned electric utilities to an end.

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Europe's Most Dangerous Pathogens: Climate Change Increasing Risks

CLICK HERE - RESEARCH - Scientific Reports - Systematic Assessment of the Climate Sensitivity of Important Human and Domestic Animals Pathogens in Europe

sciencedaily.com - University of Liverpool - August 2, 2017

The impact of climate change on the emergence and spread of infectious diseases could be greater than previously thought, according to new research by the University of Liverpool.

The study, published in Scientific Reports, is the first large-scale assessment of how climate affects bacterium, viruses or other microorganisms and parasites (pathogens) that can cause disease in humans or animals in Europe.

The results will help policy makers prioritise the surveillance for pathogens that may respond to climate change and, in turn, contribute to strengthening climate change resilience for infectious diseases.

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