Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Event Update For 2019-09-23

The seas, lakes and oceans are now pluming deadly hydrogen sulfide and suffocating methane. Hydrogen sulfide is a highly toxic water-soluble heavier-than-air gas and will accumulate in low-lying areas. Methane is slightly more buoyant than normal air and so will be all around, but will tend to contaminate our atmosphere from the top down. These gases are sickening and killing oxygen-using life all around the world, including human life, as our atmosphere is increasingly poisoned. Because both gases are highly flammable and because our entire civilization is built around fire and flammable fuels, this is leading to more fires and explosions. This is an extinction level event and will likely decimate both the biosphere and human population and it is debatable whether humankind can survive this event.

A. More fires and more explosions, especially along the coasts, but everywhere generally.
B. Many more animal die-offs, of all kinds, and especially oceanic species.
C. More multiples of people will be found dead in their homes, as if they'd dropped dead.
D. More corpses found in low-lying areas, all over the world.
E. More unusual vehicular accidents.
F. Improved unemployment numbers as people die off.

Category: Variety Pack

2019-09-23 - Unknown odor hits sheriff's office, people sickened, woman loses consciousness, in Martin County (Kentucky):

Quote: "A few employees said it was burning their sinuses and making them lightheaded. The smell was so strong, it even caused one woman's nose to bleed. The woman apparently passed out at least once as she was taken to the hospital where she was admitted."

Quote: "Pike County Emergency Management helped the department search for the origin of the odor, but the group was unable to verify any obvious issues."

2019-09-23 - Endless summer? Warm fall forecast for all 50 states:

2019-09-23 - Metal recycling center hit by fire, big pile of scrap metal burns, in Atlanta (Georgia):

2019-09-23 - Metal recycling center hit by fire, pile of scrap metal burns, in Scranton (Pennsylvania):

2019-09-23 - Metal recycling center hit by fire, scrap metal burns, in Great Falls (Montana), near the Missouri River:

2019-09-23 - Auto salvage yard hit by fire, forklift truck and vehicles burn, on Harebridge Lane near Hemel Hempstead (Britain):

Quote: "Monday 23 September, 12.47pm Fire at industrial unit used as a scrapyard, also involving a number of vehicles, an ISO container with car parts, fuel and tyres in it, a forklift truck and nearby trees and stubble field, Harebridge Lane, off Upper Icknield Way, Aston Clinton. Three appliances and crews from Aylesbury, one from Amersham, one from Gerrards Cross, one from High Wycombe, one from Tring, one from Hemel Hempstead, the Environmental Protection Unit from Aylesbury, the Incident Command Unit from Maidenhead and four officers (more than 40 people in total) attended initially, with relief crews due to take over in the evening. Firefighters used five main jets, three hose reels, a water tanker, a turntable ladder, two portable pumps and a thermal imaging camera. Residents living nearby were advised to keep doors and windows shut."

2019-09-23 - Underground electrical fire shoots flames from manhole in coastal Brooklyn (New York):

2019-09-23 - Landfill fire breaks out in Jackson Township (Pennsylvania):

2019-09-23 - Landfill fire breaks out, again, in coastal George Town (Cayman Islands):

2019-09-23 - Landfill fire breaks out in Bubbenhall (Britain):

2019-09-23 - Around 80 golf carts and barn destroyed by fire just after 1 AM at country club in Oakdale (California):

Quote: "Just after 1 a.m., multiple crews were called to the Oakdale Golf and Country Club as a fire spread through a cart barn, according to the Modesto Fire Department. The country club says the metal building was housing 80 golf carts at the time, which were all destroyed by the fire."

2019-09-23 - Home explodes and burns in the Town of Grant (Wisconsin), 4 injured:

2019-09-23 - Home destroyed by explosion and fire at 2 AM in Fort Smith (Arkansas), nobody there:

Quote: "An overnight fire caught a Fort Smith house on fire Monday after neighbors reported hearing an explosion, according to KATV content partner KFSM Channel 5 News."

Note: These are the 142nd and 143rd residential explosions in 2019...

2019-09-23 - Huge wildfires raging in Indonesia turn the skies blood red:

Quote: "The skies over the Indonesian province of Jambi have been turned blood red, as the toxic haze from widespread rainforest fires continues to affect residents across the country. Videos and images circulating on social media showed villages and highways completely blanketed by an eerie, red-colored haze in the middle of the day through the weekend and earlier this week. More than 328,000 hectares (about 800,000 acres) of ecologically-rich land have been burned across Indonesia in recent weeks."

2019-09-23 - High-rise bank devastated by massive fire on coastal Victoria Island in Lagos (Nigeria):

2019-09-23 - Fish factory ship 'Pyotr Zhitnikov' bursts into flame at 2:25 AM near the Kuril Islands (Russia):

Quote: "Fish factory PYOTR ZHITNIKOV issued distress signal at 0225 LT (UTC +11) Sep 24, reporting fire on board and requesting evacuation, in southern Kuril island waters, some 22 nm E of Iturup island."

Note: This is the 820th boat/ship to burn/explode in 2019...

2019-09-23 - Tour bus bursts into flame in the wee hours on road in Pforzheim (Germany):

Note: This is the 458th bus to burn in 2019...

2019-09-23 - Tanker truck bursts into flame on I-405 in coastal Los Angeles (California):

2019-09-23 - Tractor trailer bursts into flame at 5:55 AM on US 54 in Pratt County (Kansas):

Quote: "A semi trailer with a load of 407 vehicle batteries was engulfed in flames on the north side of the highway on the shoulder, said Tim Branscom, Pratt County Emergency Manager."

2019-09-23 - Tractor trailer bursts into flame on I-20 in Columbia County (Georgia):

2019-09-23 - Tractor trailer bursts into flame on I-24 in Hamilton County (Tennessee):

2019-09-23 - Tractor (combine) bursts into flame near Halls Ferry in Vicksburg (Mississippi):

2019-09-23 - Tractor (timber harvester) bursts into flame in Routt County (Colorado):

2019-09-23 - Multiple tractor trailers go up in flames near rail line in Etobicoke (Canada):

Quote: "Toronto Fire says multiple tractor trailers near the CN Rail tracks caught fire Monday afternoon."

2019-09-23 - Tractor trailer bursts into flame on the E4 in Rappestad (Sweden):

Note: These are the 1707th, 1708th, 1709th, 1710th, 1711th, 1712th, 1713th, 1714th and 1715th tractors/tankers/semis to burn/explode in 2019...

2019-09-23 - Dump truck bursts into flame off Horseshoe Lane in Gloucester County (Virginia):

2019-09-23 - Van bursts into flame on Highway 84 in Thomas County (Georgia):

2019-09-23 - Van bursts into flame while parked at home, fire spreads to home, on Chelmsford Road in Bradford Moor (Britain):

2019-09-23 - Van bursts into flame on Lowe Lane in Alveley (Britain):

2019-09-23 - Van bursts into flame at 12:23 AM on Westlands Road in coastal Hull (Britain):

Quote: "Westlands Road, Hull. Mon 23 Sep 2019 00:23 (No:21540) Small fire in engine compartment of van. One hose reel, one BA. In use."

2019-09-23 - SUV bursts into flame while parked on Welsh Road in Lower Ootischenia (Canada):

2019-09-23 - Electric SUV bursts into flame on highway in coastal Wenzhou (China):

2019-09-23 - Pickup truck bursts into flame near Barnegat Boulevard and Ravenwood Boulevard in coastal Barnegat (New Jersey):

2019-09-23 - Pickup truck bursts into flame on Highway 104 in Silverhill (Alabama):

2019-09-23 - Pickup truck bursts into flame on Lynden Road in Brantford (Canada):

2019-09-23 - Several cars go up in flames while parked in basement parking garage at Shockoe Slip on the James River in Richmond (Virginia):

Quote: "Richmond firefighters responded to a parking garage in Shockoe Slip where several vehicles were found on fire Monday Morning. A crew responded to 100 Virginia Street and found several vehicles on fire in the basement of the building parking lot."

Quote: "Fashionable Shockoe Slip is a downtown dining hub, with Southern-style restaurants, BBQ joints, gastropubs, and taprooms tucked down narrow alleyways and in former warehouses. It’s home to the James River Park Pipeline Walkway, a pedestrian path suspended just above the water. Nearby, the Pipeline Overlook is a popular fishing spot next to a swimming beach and the Great Blue Heron Rookery, an island nesting habitat."

2019-09-23 - Car bursts into flame on street in coastal Bridgeport (Connecticut):

2019-09-23 - Car bursts into flame near Jeannin Avenue and Kohlenberg Avenue in coastal North Port (Florida):

2019-09-23 - Car bursts into flame on the A38 between Findern and Mickleover (Britain):

2019-09-23 - Car bursts into flame on Cooperbeech Road in Ketley (Britain):

2019-09-23 - Car bursts into flame on island at Longbridge in Warwick (Britain):

2019-09-23 - Vehicle bursts into flame at 11:19 PM on Ringstone in Highbridge (Britain), near the Huntspill River:

2019-09-23 - Auto shop destroyed by fire at 1:45 AM in Orr (Minnesota):

2019-09-23 - Furniture business destroyed by fire on Beach Boulevard in coastal Jacksonville (Florida):

2019-09-23 - Historic baseball field heavily damaged by fire in Lodi (California):

2019-09-23 - Home destroyed by fire at 6:40 AM on Old State Route 8 in Victory Township (Pennsylvania), nobody there:

2019-09-23 - Home destroyed by fire at 4 AM on Pansy Road in Blanchester (Ohio), 3 injured:

2019-09-23 - Four homes go up in flames on North Rose Street near Patterson Park in coastal Baltimore (Maryland), 2 injured:

2019-09-23 - Five homes go up in flames at 4:30 AM in Cincinnati (Ohio):

2019-09-23 - Apartment building heavily damaged by AC fire at 2 AM in West Philadelphia (Pennsylvania):

Quote: "According to authorities, an air conditioning unit sparked the flames."

2019-09-23 - Deadly fire burns home on Elmwood Drive in Alexandria (Virginia), 1 killed:

2019-09-23 - Deadly fire burns apartment building in Inglewood (California), 1 killed:

2019-09-23 - Vacant home burns at 2 AM on Cook Avenue in St. Louis (Missouri):

2019-09-23 - Vacant home destroyed by fire at 3 AM on Catherine Street in Springfield (Ohio):

2019-09-23 - Whale washes ashore dead at coastal Gunnamatta Beach (Australia):

2019-09-23 - Bees dying off in the Fiji Islands:

2019-09-23 - Two girls, 7 and 8, found dead in pond near their home in coastal Chittagong (Bangladesh):

2019-09-23 - Boy, 16, athlete, collapses, foams at the mouth, dies shortly later, in Lewisville (Texas):

Quote: "Dae Dae said his brother started foaming at the mouth, so he turned him on his side to keep him from choking before called 911 on his cellphone. Dee lost consciousness in his brother's arms, his brother said. Emergency responders transported the teen to Medical City Lewisville hospital where he was pronounced dead, family members said."

Quote: "Dee's mother, Razel Sheppard, 37, said her son had a physical that included a heart test in May and to her knowledge he did not suffer from any debilitating conditions or abnormalities. 'He's never been sick. He was a healthy all-around kid,' Sheppard said."

2019-09-23 - Man, 75, found dead in Lower Saranac Lake (New York):

2019-09-23 - Man, 57, found dead in Black Butte Lake (California), empty 'ghost boat' found nearby:

2019-09-23 - Man, 72, has 'medical issue' and dies on the Greider Lakes Trail near coastal Everett (Washington):

2019-09-23 - Man, 39, found dead near the Cheshire Rail Trail near Keene (New Hampshire):

2019-09-23 - Woman found dead near dock at Bayou Park at university in Monroe (Louisiana):

Quote: "The spokesperson says the body was found near the dock at Bayou Park, which is across the street from the University Library."

2019-09-23 - Boy, 16, found dead in the Redwood River near Redwood Falls (Minnesota):

2019-09-23 - Man, 34, drops dead along Great Oaks Trail near Valley View Road in Winton Woods (Ohio):

2019-09-23 - Person found dead outside apartments in San Angelo (Texas):

2019-09-23 - Woman, 51, found dead in the Detroit River in Grosse Ile (Michigan):

2019-09-23 - Man, 49, found dead under bridge in Lawrence (Massachusetts):

2019-09-23 - Person found dead in Lake Erie near Leamington (Canada):

2019-09-23 - Woman, 57, found dead in Edenwold (Canada):

2019-09-23 - Man, 18, found dead in Little Lake in Georgian Bay Township (Canada):

2019-09-23 - Man in his 30s or 40s has 'medical episode' while scuba diving and dies at coastal Byron Bay (Australia):

Quote: "A 40-year-old man has died of a suspected medical episode while scuba diving at Byron Bay. Emergency services were called to The Pass just before midday, following reports a diver was pulled unconscious from the water. Paramedics performed CPR for 25 minutes but were unable to revive him."

2019-09-23 - Man, 20, goes to bathe in pond, next seen dead in pond, in Bachirawa (Nigeria):

Quote: "NAN recalled that a 16-year-old boy, Shahid Lawal, also drowned while bathing in a pond at Bacharawa Ramin Kasa, Fagge Local Government Area in Kano on September 5."

2019-09-23 - Man in his 20s found dead at Victoria Park in coastal London (Britain):

2019-09-23 - Man in his 40s has 'medical emergency', minivan crashes into pole, in Haverford (Pennsylvania), 1 killed:

Quote: "A man suffering a medical emergency crashed into a power pole on Earlington Road between Wynne and Devon roads shortly after 3 p.m. Monday."

2019-09-23 - Man has 'medical emergency', SUV plunges into Creve Couer Lake, in Maryland Heights suburb of St. Louis (Missouri):

Quote: "Police said the man suffered a medical emergency before the car went into the lake."

2019-09-23 - Woman has 'medical problem', SUV crashes into store, in Terre Haute (Indiana), 1 injured:

Quote: "Terre Haute Police say a woman pulled into a parking spot and had some sort of medical problem. That is when she crashed into the main entrance to the store. Police said she was taken to an area hospital with non-life-threatening injuries."

2019-09-23 - Driver has 'medical event', pickup truck plunges into estuary in coastal Christchurch (New Zealand):

Quote: "Police say the driver appeared to have suffered a medical event."

2019-09-23 - Driver has 'medical condition', car crashes into pole, in Timmonsville (South Carolina):

Quote: "Police said the driver suffered a medical condition but is expected to be okay."

2019-09-23 - Small plane crashes into wooded area in Prairie Grove (Arkansas), 1 killed:

2019-09-23 - Small plane crashes in Gresham (Oregon), 2 injured:

2019-09-23 - Small plane crashes into wooded area in Mulberry (Florida), 1 injured:

2019-09-23 - Small plane crash-lands in field near coastal Tampa (Florida), engine failure:

2019-09-23 - Tractor trailer overturns in the wee hours on Highway 19-E near Simerly Creek Road in Hampton (Tennessee):

2019-09-23 - Pickup truck veers off road, crashes into apartment building, in Austin (Texas):

2019-09-23 - Car crashes into tree, bursts into flame, in Guilford County (North Carolina), 1 killed:

2019-09-23 - Car crashes off highway ramp at 2:47 AM in coastal Sunnyvale (California), 1 killed:

2019-09-23 - Car veers off road, crashes into home, in Kearns (Utah), 2 injured:

Quote: "Police believe the driver may have suffered a medical issue."

2019-09-23 - Golf cart veers off road, crashes into pole, in coastal Panama City Beach (Florida), 1 killed:

2019-09-23 - Walrus attacks and sinks Russian Navy landing boat at coastal Cape Geller in the Arctic:

Quote: "A walrus attacked and sunk a Russian Navy landing boat in the Arctic Ocean last week, with no one hurt in the incident."

2019-09-23 - Classroom collapses at school in Nairobi (Kenya), 7 killed, dozens injured:

2019-09-23 - Volcano Popocatepetl erupts again near Mexico City (Mexico):

2019-09-23 - Magnitude 6.0 earthquake strikes in the ocean near Puerto Rico:

2019-09-23 - Dutch reinforce major dike as seas rise, climate changes:

2019-09-23 - West Antarctica's crumbling ice sheet to redraw global coastline:

2019-09-23 - Warm weather results in dramatic increase in hantavirus infections across Germany:

Quote: "The dramatic rise in cases is the result of the warm weather this year, which provided optimal breeding conditions for bank voles, one of the most common carriers of hantavirus."

2019-09-23 - Russia gives definitive approval to the Paris climate accord:


  1. Good morning Jonny, everyone. Man PA can't get off the list here!

    Hull is showing a JJFH record breaking number incidents lately.

    With all these multiple homes and residences going up in flame
    an increase in the homeless population is likely.

    BLACK BEAR NEWS 9.24.19 Lack of context for climate change
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HmHibCrtLNY [25 min.]

    Prepare for the Weirdness [by Hunter S. Thompson]

    There is an eerie sense of Panic in the air, a silent Fear and Uncertainty that comes with once-reliable faiths and truths and solid Institutions that are no longer safe to believe in. ... There is a Presidential Election, right on schedule, but somehow there is no President. A new Congress is elected, like always, but somehow there is no real Congress at all -- not as we knew it, anyway, and whatever passes for Congress will be as helpless and weak as Whoever has to pass for the "New President."

    If this were the world of sports, it would be like playing a Super Bowl that goes into 19 scoreless Overtimes and never actually Ends. ... or four L.A. Lakers stars being murdered in different places on the same day. Guaranteed Fear and Loathing. Abandon all hope. Prepare for the Weirdness. Get familiar with Cannibalism. [more]

    Severe Cyclonic Storm "Hikaa" about to hit Oman with hurricane-force winds and heavy rain

    Tropical Cyclone "Hikaa" is expected to cross Oman coast close to Duqm around 15:00 UTC on September 24, 2019 as a Severe Cyclonic Storm with a wind speed 110 - 120 km/h (68 - 75 mph) and gusts to 135 km/h (85 mph), according to RSMC New Delhi.

    Strong and shallow M5.9 earthquake hits Pakistan - India border region

    A strong and shallow earthquake registered as M5.9 by the EMSC hit Pakistan at 11:01 UTC (16:01 local time) on September 24, 2019. The agency is reporting a depth of 10 km (6.2 miles). USGS is reporting M5.2 at a depth of 10 km. Updates are at the end of the report. [more]

    [continued below]

  2. Strong and Shallow Earthquake Kills at Least 25 and Injures More Than 300 in Pakistan – Roads Destroyed and Terrifying videos

    Tropical Storm "Jerry" forecast to pass very close to Bermuda, Tropical Storm Warning in effect

    Just a couple of days after a close encounter with Category 3 Hurricane "Humberto," Bermuda is expecting another tropical cyclone this week. Although Jerry is no longer a hurricane, its impact is expected to be strong and a Tropical Storm Watch is in effect the entire country. [more]

    Statement from the IAWF about climate change

    The following is a statement from the International Association of Wildland Fire.

    The following is a statement from the International Association of Wildland Fire.

    Climate Change Week at the United Nations
    September 23 – 29, 2019

    Climate change has already had significant consequences in the global wildfire reality, affecting citizens as well as the global wildland fire community. Many key issues of importance to the IAWF – including firefighter and civilian safety, fire management expenses, changing weather patterns, natural role of fire, fire regimes and ecosystem succession, as well as the wildland urban interface– all require recognition of the role of climate change. [more]
    Mont Blanc: Glacier in danger of collapse, experts warn

    Italian authorities have closed roads and evacuated mountain huts after experts warned that part of a glacier on Mont Blanc could collapse.

    experts warned that a section of the glacier was sliding at speeds of 50-60cm (16-23in) per day. [more]

    Out in the wild, our impacts are real

    Digging into around 25 peer-reviewed studies, one conclusion that Thompson found is that no one type of recreation is blameless. “All human activity, no matter what it is, impacts wildlife,” he said. [more]

    [more later]

  3. Wednesday, 25 September 2019
    GretaThunberg at the UN and the reaction

    [so many negative reactions to her message - as Guy would have told her to expect - because people hate change or loss of privilege; SOTT has at least 2 negative posts on this]

    There’s Evidence That Climate Activism Could Be Swaying Public Opinion in the United States

    I’m a scholar of environmental communication who examines how people become engaged with solving dilemmas such as climate change, and how activism motivates others to take action. A new study I worked on suggests that large rallies, such as this youth-led Climate Strike, could be influencing public opinion.

    the percentage who viewed climate activists as “aggressive” fell by 10 percentage points, from 74% to 64%. Similarly, survey respondents viewed activists as less “arrogant” and “dictatorial” after the protests occurred.

    We consider this finding important because other research has suggested that people who view climate activists in this negative manner are more motivated to speak out against policies aimed at slowing the pace of global warming, such as the two carbon tax initiatives that voters have rejected in Washington state despite its Democratic majority. [more]

    [AND, to all the nay-sayers of Greta]
    Dramatically change society to curb climate change or drown in higher sea levels, warns a new UN report

    In a sweeping new report on the state of the oceans and the cryosphere—the ecological realm of sea ice, snow, and glaciers—the United Nations climate change body doesn’t pull any punches. Even if one looks only at oceans and ice, failure to dramatically reshape “all aspects of society” in order to keep warming in check—less than two degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels—will mean devastation for coastal cities, Arctic communities, small island states, anyone who relies on glaciers for water, and virtually all sea creatures.

    In other words, it would be the end of life on Earth as we know it. [more; just so they know the consequences]

    Not convinced on the need for urgent climate action? Here's what happens to our planet between 1.5°C and 2°C of global warming

    [we're about 1.75 C above global avg. temp. already - using the ORIGINAL date of Industrial Revolution]

    Climate breakdown is already harming livelihoods, cities and ecosystems. From heatwaves and droughts to cyclones and floods, devastating extreme weather events are more frequent, more intense and more unpredictable than they would be in the absence of global heating. Warming and acidifying oceans are causing severe coral bleaching to occur twice as often as in 1980, leaving many unable to recover.

    Shrinking habitats are increasingly forcing wildlife into conflict with human settlements. Increasing wildfires are damaging vital carbon stores in North America and Siberia, while the advance of spring is throwing species who depend on each other out of sync.

    The more we destabilise our climate, the greater the risk to human societies and ecosystems. [more]

    [more below]

  4. If Donald Trump Is Impeached, You Should Expect The Mother Of All Stock Market Crashes To Happen

    News that an impeachment inquiry is being initiated instantly sent stock prices tumbling on Tuesday, but that small jolt is nothing compared to what we will experience if Donald Trump is actually impeached. Over the past couple of years we have seen a tremendous boom in stock prices, and one of the big reasons for that boom is the fact that the folks on Wall Street know that Trump is always going to be looking out for their best interests. Trump understands that his chances of winning again in 2020 will be greatly enhanced if stock prices are rising and most Americans believe that we have a “booming economy”, and so he wants to do everything in his power to try to make those things happen. That means that Trump’s short-term interests are perfectly aligned with Wall Street’s short-term interests, but things will shift dramatically if someone like Elizabeth Warren or Bernie Sanders ends up in the White House. Wall Street knows that they have a friend in Donald Trump, and losing that friend would potentially be absolutely devastating. [more]

    'Wherever America goes, terror expands': Rouhani says US is 'supporter of terrorism'

    "The country that is present and flying over the air space of and bombarding the soil of the country of Syria without permission of the government is the United States of America."

    Rouhani added that American sanctions on Iran also qualified as a form of terrorism, pointing out their ill effects on the country's healthcare system and medicine costs. He said sanctions relief remained a hard precondition before Tehran would even consider coming to the table for talks. [more]

    Woman, 44, mauled to death by her dogs named as Elayne Stanley

    A woman mauled to death by her dogs in Widnes, Cheshire, has been named locally as mother-of-three Elayne Stanley.

    Screams were heard from neighbours as the two dogs attacked Ms Stanley, 44, who was at home with her three daughters, including 12-year-old twins.

    The dogs, described as American bulldog or Dogue de Bordeaux type breeds, attacked their owner in the house on Graham Road at around 5.15pm on Tuesday.

    Neighbours said they believe the victim’s 12-year-old twins were at home at the time and may have witnessed the attack.

    Sea creatures are moving towards the poles at a rate of 32 miles per decade

    As ocean temperatures rise, marine species are moving away from their warming and acidifying habitats to seek colder waters. There is, in effect, a mass migration of sea life towards the poles. [more; you sure it's not from GSM/mIA?]

    [next piece follows]

  5. [one of my favorite topics]
    Are dogs conscious? How about computers? Brain scientist Christof Koch takes on deep questions

    Do animals possess consciousness? Can consciousness be uploaded into a computer? Can we measure objectively whether someone is conscious or not?

    Those may sound like deep, imponderable questions — but in a newly published book, “The Feeling of Life Itself,” neuroscientist Christof Koch actually lays out some answers: Yes, no … and yes, scientists are already testing a method for measuring consciousness, with eerie implications.
    Koch has studied the workings of the brain for decades as a Caltech researcher and now as chief scientist and president of Seattle’s Allen Institute for Brain Science. This is the third book he’s written about the consciousness conundrum — and you might think he’d stick to the view, popular among the technorati, that being conscious is just a matter of having sufficiently complex software.

    “In particular, this means that computers, if they are sufficiently complex and if they begin to resemble our cognitive abilities and memories and speaking, then they too will become conscious,” Koch told GeekWire. “Consciousness is all about doing. Consciousness is just a special form of computation. It’s just a particular algorithm. So, consciousness is just a hack away.”

    Contrary to expectations, Koch takes a radically different view: He says consciousness has to do with how the brain’s hardware is intrinsically structured and interconnected.

    “It’s a measure of how complex systems are. It’s a measure of how usable a system is. It’s a measure of how much causal power the system has upon itself,” he said. “So, in principle, you could measure it.” [more]

    A 'mini tsunami' from Hurricane Dorian drowned 28 wild horses on islands off the coast of North Carolina

    During Hurricane Dorian, 28 wild horses were killed when a storm surge caused a "mini tsunami," the Charlotte Observer reported.

    They were part of a herd of 49 horses that live on Cedar Island, which is located off the Outer Banks.
    Typically, wild horses innately know to move to higher ground when a storm surges. But in this case, the water was rising so rapidly they couldn't move fast enough, herd manager Woody Hancock said.

    There are two other herds of horses that live in the Outer Banks, but they're believed to have survived Dorian.[more]

    1 dead, 2 injured, including child, after crash on I-95 in Delaware
    https://www.yahoo.com/news/1-dead-2-injured-including-233202079.html [~ 2 min. news spot]

    Miami is “not even prepared to think about preparing” for a storm like Hurricane Dorian, says its mayor

    [to be fair, neither is anyone else]

    Miami’s mayor, Francis X. Suarez, says the city has no means to protect itself from the kind of “super hurricanes” threatening the region.

    The combination of storm surge and wind speed in Dorian was “beyond our imaginations,” Suarez said today at a summit on climate change at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York City. “It sat on top of the Bahamas for two days. We’re not even prepared to think about preparing for an event of that size.” [more]

    In pictures: Britain battered by 50mph gales and a month's rain in one day

    Britain was soaked with a month’s worth of rain in a single day on Tuesday, disrupting rail and road networks across the country. [more]

  6. [midweek headlines from Rice Farmer]
    News Links, September 25, 2019
    Rice Farmer

    Asset Class of Vintage Cars Drops into Bear Market, Down by More than in 2008/2009

    Negative Interest Rates Are Social Political Poison
    The interest rate business model is dead. Negative interest rates killed it, with no replacement in sight.

    Financial Storm Clouds Gather
    The price of this "solution"--the undermining of the financial system--will eventually be paid in full.

    A majority of the ultra-wealthy expect a recession by 2020 and are hunkering down, says UBS survey

    Vaping giant Juul is cutting staff in corporate restructuring as scrutiny intensifies

    Strains that sank Thomas Cook weigh on European airlines
    The collapse of travel group Thomas Cook and a trio of subsidiary airlines, leaving 600,000 holidaymakers stranded, is unlikely to be the last failure among Europe's struggling second-tier carriers.

    U.S. Air Force weighs reducing B-1 bomber fleet to save money

    Attacks on Saudi Oil Plants Reveal Weaknesses in US-Made Defenses

    Iran: Seized UK-Flagged Oil Tanker "Free To Leave"

    NATO's Not Ready For Saudi-Style Drone Attacks; 'It's A Serious Problem'

    US, Polish presidents sign pact to boost American military presence in Poland

    The Return of the Condottieri? How Military Drones are Changing the World

    U.S. to intensify pressure on Iran after Saudi oil attacks, but seeks collective response: envoy

    EU ministers in Malta to thrash out new migrant system

    One deadly week reveals where the immigration crisis begins — and where it ends

    Oil Markets Are One Outage Away From Crisis

    Concentrated Solar Power can only exist in deserts and use too much water

    Is Aramco Lying About Its Damaged Oil Infrastructure?

    SolarCity Panels Spontaneously Ignite On Colorado Residential Rooftop [JJFH incident!]

    Fire breaks out at floating solar plant in Japan

    FERC Warns A Gas Pipeline Attack Could Cause Mass Blackouts

    WHO accused of rationing Ebola vaccine in DR Congo
    Agency could keep Three Mile Island nuclear debris in Idaho
    Who's going to guard this stuff after society collapses? -- RF
    Greta Thunberg, 15 young activists sue five countries over climate change

    Arctic sea ice shrinks to 2nd-lowest mark on record

    Climate Crisis Is Accelerating. Past 5 Years Will Be Hottest on Record: Report

    Veterinary drugs pushing dung beetles to the brink of extinction

    It Could Never Happen Here: Many People Won't Consider the Grim Reality of Long-term Survival
    It absolutely will get bad, everywhere. When people get hungry, the mood quickly turns ugly. -- RR

    China buys about 10 cargoes of U.S. soybeans after trade talks

    After Thomas Cook collapse, UK PM asks why bosses got paid millions

    Court rules Johnson suspended parliament unlawfully, PM defiant

    US Will Follow Germany, Eurozone, China Into Recession

    Student debt hit a depressing amount now hovering at $1.5 trillion. Where do we go from here?

    Alarming VA Report Totals Decade of Veteran Suicides

    3 suicides in 1 week by sailors from aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush

    PG&E shuts off powers to 24,000 customers due to wildfire risk

  7. Lavrov: West preaches rules, human rights, liberalism but fails to use or uphold them

    Western countries pride themselves on defending human rights and upholding order across the globe, yet their actions undermine trust and peace and create more chaos and suffering, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said.

    The rhetoric of liberalism, democracy and human rights "goes hand in hand with the policies of inequality, injustice, selfishness and a belief in their own exceptionalism," Lavrov wrote in an essay published in the Russia in Global Affairs magazine. While maintaining diplomatic decorum, the essay is a scathing condemnation of unipolar hypocrisy that the Russian FM argued represents a betrayal of principles laid down by the victorious allies at the end of World War II and the founding of the United Nations.

    Individual rights and freedoms are incompatible with sanctions, economic blockades, and "overt military threats" to states like Cuba, Venezuela, North Korea, Iran and Syria, the minister said. Bombing and regime change campaigns in places like Libya and Iraq have destroyed their statehood and killed tens of thousands.

    Another concept the West frequently invokes is the so-called 'rules-based order.' However, the 'rules' in question are being invented by the Western politicians themselves and "selectively" applied to serve their own needs, using this trick to "usurp the decision-making process" from others, Lavrov said.

    Lavrov brought up the US leaving landmark arms control treaties as another example of rogue behavior. Washington ditched the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty in 2002, and the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty this August. The same thing happened to the painstakingly-negotiated 2015 deal on the Iranian nuclear program, scrapped by the US last year. The US has even hinted at lifting the ban on deploying weapons in space.

    US trade wars and sanctions boil down to Washington wanting to gain "competitive advantages by non-market methods," only adding to the growing instability and deepening international mistrust, according to Lavrov.

    Moscow is offering to use the G20 format to its fullest potential and reform the UN Security Council, where "the West is unfairly overrepresented." A reformed body will do a better job at respecting the interests of Asian, African and Latin American nations, as well as upholding the "broadest consensus" among the UN members.

    Aiming for consensus and diplomacy instead of threats and pressure is crucial in today's politics, Lavrov noted, concluding his essay with a quote from long-term Soviet Foreign Minister Andrey Gromyko, "Better to have ten years of negotiations than one day of war." [more]

    [from our Terminator, Here We Come desk]
    By leaps and bounds a new twist on robotics: Atlas' agility in gymnastic routine

    [give this short video a look]

    YouTube viewers were equal parts alarmed and impressed by the flawlessness and flexibility of the mechanical gymnast. "So they won't just be able to destroy us, but now they will also be fabulous while doing it," one wrote after watching the footage.

    "Imagine walking home from work and seeing a 6 foot 150kg robot doing somersaults and rolling down to end your existence," another suggested more ominously. [more]

    Night sky illuminated by huge meteor fireball over London, England

    [next piece follows]

  8. [from our Health Watch dept.]
    A deadly fungal infection that spreads through dust is on the rise in the southwestern U.S., and scientists warn the north may be next

    Valley fever, a fungal infection that can be life-threatening in severe cases, has been on the rise in the southwestern United States.

    Hot, dry conditions in Arizona and California are ideal for spreading the disease. It thrives in dusty soil and its spore can be carried up to 75 miles by the wind.

    Scientists have projected that valley fever cases could increase by up to 50% by the end of the century and spread across nearly a third of US states as a result of climate change. Its overall area of impact is expected to more than double. [more]
    [Disappearing Food segment]
    Fifth of world's calories threatened as climate scientists sound alarm over wheat

    Droughts caused by global warming could devastate up to 60% of the world's wheat fields by the end of the century, causing food shortages and instability, researchers warned on Wednesday.

    The world must prepare for "unprecedented" shocks to the production of the crop, a staple food in many countries, climate scientists said in a paper published in the journal Science Advances. [more; "end of the decade" is closer to the truth]

    IPCC report paints catastrophic picture of melting ice and rising sea levels – and reality may be even worse

    The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) – the UN body responsible for communicating the science of climate breakdown – has released its long-awaited Special Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate.

    Based on almost 7,000 peer-reviewed research articles, the report is a cutting-edge crash course in how human-caused climate breakdown is changing our ice and oceans and what it means for humanity and the living planet. In a nutshell, the news isn’t good. [more; no, listen to SOTT instead . ..]

    17 states sue Trump Administration over Endangered Species Act changes

    Last month, the Trump administration announced a major overhaul to the Endangered Species Act that it said would reduce regulations. The new rules begin taking effect Thursday.

    The administration's changes ended blanket protections for animals newly deemed threatened and allowed federal authorities for the first time to take into account the economic cost of protecting a particular species.

    “As we face the unprecedented threat of a climate emergency, now is the time to strengthen our planet’s biodiversity, not to destroy it,” California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, who led the coalition that filed the suit, said in a statement. “The only thing we want to see extinct are the beastly policies of the Trump administration putting our ecosystems in critical danger.”

    "We’re coming out swinging to defend this consequential law – humankind and the species with whom we share this planet depend on it,” Becerra said.

    Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson called it “death by a thousand cuts” for the law. [more]

    [more still]

  9. ‘Boy, they’re an ugly-looking thing’: Voracious swamp rodents swarming California and endangering water supply

    Voracious swamp rodents have invaded parts of California, endangering the state’s water supply and threatening to destroy the habitats of other animals.

    The nutria, resembling something between a large rat and a beaver, can weigh up to 9kg and consume up to a quarter of that mass daily in riverbank plants. Their destructive burrowing can damage wetland habitats.

    “Boy, they’re an ugly-looking thing,” said David Passadori, an almond and walnut farmer in central California. “And the way they multiply – jeez.” [more; they're even better at differential equations! short video incl.]

    [as most of us already knew]
    Carbon Taxes Won’t Do Enough to Slow Global Warming

    As the late economist Martin Weitzman showed, if there’s a small possibility of extreme destruction from climate change, it can make standard cost-benefit analysis irrelevant. Carbon taxes are like carrying an umbrella but failing to buy flood insurance. [more]

    Flood Threat Continues In Desert Southwest

    A few severe thunderstorms may produce large hail, gusty winds and/or heavy rainfall today from Kansas and Oklahoma into Missouri and Arkansas. The same goes for southeastern California and southern Arizona. This may slow down drivers at times on portions of I-8, I-10, I-35, I-40, I-44 and I-49, affecting areas such as Topeka, Wichita, Oklahoma City, Springfield (Missouri), Ft. Smith, Little Rock, Phoenix, Yuma, Tucson and El Centro.

    The National Weather Service (NWS) is keeping a Flash Flood Watch in place for target areas in the Southwest. Showers and thunderstorms will increase in aerial coverage this afternoon, lasting through Thursday afternoon, September 26. Multiple rounds of rainfall are possible along with torrential rainfall rates exceeding one inch per hour. This may happen in areas where heavy rain has already saturated the ground this week. Flash flooding will likely result in rapidly rising water levels, road closures and potential rock slides in mountain areas. [more]