I’m still interested in the Caspian Sea. (See https://tapister.wordpress.com/category/caspian-sea-oil/) While oil and gas are still my primary interests, today I’m also curious about water. Who owns the water in the Caspian Sea? Can Iran just siphon it off, without getting permission from the other littoral states? Or the major gas/oil conglomerates operating there? I’ve done an internet search about it and really didn’t find anything that addresses that question. Here’s some of what I did find today.

Its Great Lake Shriveled, Iran Confronts Crisis of Water Supply
New York Times online
JAN. 30, 2014

LakeUrmiaIranLAKE URMIA, Iran — An abandoned ship rusts in the mud on the south shore of Lake Urmia, where only 5 percent of the water remains, Iranian environmental officials say. Morteza Nikoubazl for The New York Times.

After driving for 15 minutes over the bottom of what was once Iran’s largest lake, a local environmental official stepped out of his truck, pushed his hands deep into his pockets and silently wandered into the great dry plain, as if searching for water he knew he would never find.

Just an hour earlier, on a cold winter day here in western Iran, the official, Hamid Ranaghadr, had recalled how as recently as a decade ago, cruise ships filled with tourists plied the lake’s waters in search of flocks of migrating flamingos.

Now, the ships are rusting in the mud and the flamingos fly over the remains of the lake on their way to more hospitable locales. According to figures compiled by the local environmental office, only 5 percent of the water remains.

Iran is facing a water shortage potentially so serious that officials are making contingency plans for rationing in the greater Tehran area, home to 22 million, and other major cities around the country. President Hassan Rouhani has identified water as a national security issue, and in public speeches in areas struck hardest by the shortage he is promising to “bring the water back.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/01/31/world/middleeast/its-great-lake-shriveled-iran-confronts-crisis-of-water-supply.html?_r=0

Iran’s parliament approves project on transfer of water from Caspian Sea
Trend online magazine
Jan 23, 2014

Iranian parliament has approved the project on transfer of water from the Caspian Sea to the deserts in the country’s central parts, Iranian Energy Minister Hamid Chitchian said, Mehr News Agency reported on Jan. 23. The minister noted that funds have been allocated from Iran’s state budget for this project.

Commenting on the Lake Urmia revival project the minister added that a committee was created for saving the lake. The committee will be chaired by Iranian First Vice President, Eshaq Jahangiri.

In April 2012 the former president of Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad attended the foundation-laying of an irrigation system designed for transferring of water from the Caspian Sea. However Iranian MPs and some economic experts considered this project ineffective and demanded suspension of its implementation, after which construction was delayed.

The project for transfer of the Caspian Sea waters to the central regions of Iran includes: construction of hydroelectric power stations, a desalination plant, pumping stations, power lines, water pipes and tanks, according to the message.

The headquarters of Khatam-ol-Anbia, affiliated with the Islamic Republic of Iran Guard Corps (IRGC) will control the project’s realization, according to the message.

http://en.trend.az/news/politics/2233429.html

Deputy FM in Astana to Participate in Caspian Sea Working Group
Tasnimnews.com
January 29, 2014

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Deputy Foreign Minister for Asian and Pacific Affairs Ebrahim Rahimpour left Tehran for Kazakhstan capital city, Astana, Wednesday to participate in the 35th meeting of the special working group of the Caspian Sea.

The working group session on the Convention on the legal status of the Caspian Sea will be held in Astana for two days with the special representatives and deputies minister of the five littoral countries of the Caspian Sea.

The deputy foreign ministers of Iran, Russia, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, and Azerbaijan will in the meeting discuss the latest developments regarding the legal regime of the Caspian Sea and prepare a report for the upcoming ministerial meeting due to be held in Russia this spring. Moscow will also host The Caspian Sea Littoral States Summit late in summer.

The Caspian Sea is the largest enclosed water body on earth by area, variously classed as the world’s largest lake or a full-fledged sea.

The Caspian Sea Convention will determine the territorial rights of littoral states- Iran, Russia, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan – as well as other matters related to the world’s largest landlocked body of water.

The Caspian Sea legal regime is based on two agreements signed between Iran and the former Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) in 1921 and 1940. The three new littoral states, established after the collapse of the Soviet Union, have not recognized the prior treaties, triggering a debate on the future status of the sea.

http://www.tasnimnews.com/English/Home/Single/263554

BP Starts Production at West Chirag in Caspian Sea
Wall Street Journal online
Jan. 29, 2014

CaspianOilFieldsLONDON—Oil major BP PLC said Wednesday that production has started at the West Chirag platform of the Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli field in the Azerbaijan sector of the Caspian Sea, completing the Chirag oil project which was sanctioned in 2010.

West Chirag production began from a pre-drilled well called J05 on Jan. 28 and will increase throughout this year as other pre-drilled wells are brought on line, BP said without indicating volumes. However, BP said the new platform has a capacity for 183,000 barrels a day with a gas export capacity of 285 million standard cubic feet a day.

“The startup of Chirag oil project marks a major milestone in the development of the super-giant ACG [Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli field],” Gordon Birrell, BP’s Regional President for Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey said.

“To date the ACG field has produced over 2.3 billion barrels of oil and with future continual major investments in new technologies and facilities, like the one we have today started up, it will continue to produce as a world-class reservoir for many decades,”, Mr. Birrell added.

BP is operator of the field with a 35.8% interest. Partners in the field include SOCAR with 11.6%, Chevron CVX -4.14% Corp with 11.3%, Inpex Corp with 11%, Statoil AS STL.OS -1.46% A with 8.6%, Exxon Mobil Corp with 8%, TPAO with 6.8%, Itochu 8001.TO +0.56% Corp with 4.3% and ONGC Videsh Ltd. with 2.7%.

http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702304428004579350491065104568

BP Seeks ACG Extension to Maintain Output at Largest Azeri Field
Bloomberg News
Jan 29, 2014

BP Plc (BP/) is seeking to extend its oil contract on the Azeri-Chirag-Guneshli field beyond 2024 to allow more investment and sustain output at the largest Azeri deposit after its local partner last year said there weren’t such plans.

The Caspian Sea field produced 32.5 million tons of oil in 2013, down from 32.9 million tons. While the new $6 billion West Chirag platform that started output yesterday will help offset natural decline, BP said at least one more is needed by 2021.

“We are talking to State Oil Co. of Azerbaijan about the next phase,” Gordon Birrel, Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey manager, said in Baku, the Azeri capital. “But we have no fixed and agreed plans at this point. This field needs investment and at least one more platform to maintain production.”

West Chirag is estimated to produce about 60,000 barrels a day, or 3 million tons, this year, he said. The platform will have at least 14 wells, with six running this year, Birrel said. It’s the largest and most technologically advanced of the eight current platforms in Azerbaijan’s section of the Caspian Sea, he said. The site has a capacity of 183,000 barrels of oil a day.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-01-29/bp-seeks-acg-extension-to-maintain-output-at-largest-azeri-field.html

The Congressman who went off the grid
Roscoe Bartlett spent 20 years on Capitol Hill. Now he lives in a remote cabin in the woods, prepping for doomsday.
By JASON KOEBLER
Politico online, 3 January 2014

roscoebartlett

Dr. Roscoe Bartlett entered public service after “…a science career that saw him go through IBM in its start-up years and the U.S. Navy as an engineer, before becoming director of the Space Life Sciences research group at Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, where he helped the U.S. win the space race by, among other things, developing a device that allows astronauts to breathe at high altitudes and low temperatures.”

When Roscoe Bartlett was in Congress, he latched onto a particularly apocalyptic issue, one almost no one else ever seemed to talk about: America’s dangerously vulnerable power grid. If the United States doesn’t do something to protect the grid, and soon, a terrorist or an act of nature will put an end to life as we know it.

Bartlett loved to conjure doomsday visions: Think post-Sandy New York City without power but spread over a much larger area for months at a time. He once recounted a conversation he claimed to have had with unnamed Russian officials about how they could take out the United States: They would “detonate a nuclear weapon high above your country,” he recalled them saying, “and shut down your power grid — and your communications — for six months or so.”

(Retired from office now) …. Having failed to safeguard the power grid for the rest of the country, Bartlett has taken himself completely off the grid.

Bartlett'sCabin
I visited Bartlett this past fall. During the four hours he spends showing me around, Bartlett continually stresses his reliance on only very basic technology to make his little corner of West Virginia livable — the solar panels and the batteries they charge, the power inverters, the water pipes and the wood stoves.

Bartlett tells me that the farm’s simplicity is a challenge, but it’s also an insurance policy. If he were to die, he says, his wife might not be able to repair more complicated technology. And besides, he tells me, if he used higher-tech power inverters “loaded with computers and chips and stuff,” they might fail, and then they’d be in trouble. I ask why that would be an issue — couldn’t they just drive to the nearest town to pick one up or order a new one off the Internet? “I have no idea,” he answers. “A giant solar storm? EMPs?”

EMP is shorthand for electromagnetic pulse, an electronic disturbance that can be delivered by a warhead — nuclear or otherwise — and that can instantly short out electrical equipment for as long as months at a time. For survivalists of Bartlett’s bent, it is one of the terrifying threats against which all this living off the land is designed to protect.

As Bartlett points out to me, every single one of America’s 17 critical infrastructure systems — food and agriculture, water and sewer, transportation, emergency services and so on — are useless without electricity. Here in West Virginia, running a power system completely independent of the municipality, he’s safe in the event of a massive outage. (His wife also notes helpfully that at 4,000 feet, “an awful lot of the country could get flooded before it gets here.”)

And EMPs aren’t the only source of Bartlett’s concern. In 1859, the sun unleashed a flare — a powerful storm of energy — in the direction of the Earth. The charged particles from the storm lit telegraph wires on fire and put others out of commission for months. That storm is now known as the “Carrington Event,” after Dr. Joseph Carrington, the man who studied it. Such storms are estimated to occur once every 150 years — which means we’re overdue for another one…

A similar event today could knock out the power grid between Washington and New York for up to two years, according to a June report by Lloyd’s, a British group that assesses risk for insurance companies.

In the last 36 months, there have been solar storms strong enough to disrupt GPS satellites, threaten the International Space Station and knock crucial military satellites offline for a few minutes. Stronger storms would damage or destroy electronics on Earth for an unknown period of time, and an EMP would have a similar effect. According to Bartlett, a terrorist with a “$100,000 Scud launcher and any crude nuclear weapon” could detonate a bomb above the atmosphere and knock out power for more than a year.

There are ways to “harden,” or protect, electrical transformers and other infrastructure, but doing so is costly. After a solar storm knocked out power in Quebec for 12 hours in 1989, the Canadian government invested $1.2 billion in hardening its grid, but no similar actions have been taken in the United States.

Read the entire article — it’s well worth the time. http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2014/01/roscoe-bartlett-congressman-off-the-grid-101720.html#.UsgUaPu8qAp

Status report 2013-2014

Posted: December 31, 2013 in Uncategorized

happy-new-year-2014-australia-wallpapers-pics-images-sms-Happy New Year! I haven’t added a new post in quite a while now. Not that there’s been a lack of interesting news from around the world, indeed quite the opposite. There’s been too much! So many articles to choose from, so many coming so often, that I have just been reading them, making mental notes, and saving a few links on my computer.

As I was praying about 2013 coming to a close and 2014 beginning, the Lord reminded me that time is a record-keeping construct for human purposes, and the calendar has been adjusted several times over the centuries. There’s not a hard and fast line separating the years.

Still, some things ran through my mind as I pictured the globe… wars and rumors of wars, old ones and new ones in the Middle East, Far East, Africa and Europe. Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq, South Sudan, Central African Republic. Civilian protests in the Ukraine. Conflict between Japan and China over certain Pacific islands with threats of military intervention. Bombings this week in Volgograd, Russia. Ongoing Iranian tension over nuclear materials.

Natural disasters on unprecedented scales, fires, floods, volcanoes and earthquakes. Hurricane-force snow and ice storms this week across the mid-western to northeastern United States. Similar destructive storms and flooding in Ireland and England. Many records are being broken with temperature extremes, rainfall totals, power outages.

Signs in the heavens with comets, meteors and asteroids. The solar poles have just finished reversing — a normal occurrence during the 11-12 year solar cycle — with negative consequences for earth-based technology, such as communication satellites. Then there’s the arctic ice melting while antarctic ice thickens. The massive underground lake just discovered in Greenland, a sign of global warming, some say.

Diseases. New strains of old ones (a virulent strain of flu), newly discovered ones (bird flu caught by humans). Drug-resistant ones. Not to mention economic turmoil worldwide. Foreign and domestic stock market fluctuations.

Overall moral decline in many nations, as laws are changed or enacted to legalize behaviors deemed illegal or immoral just a few years ago. (And good stuff still happens, too. New discoveries, new victories, new revivals! Thank God for those.)

Here are a few news links, a glimpse of what I’ve been reading and praying about over the past several months.

South Sudan http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/worldviews/wp/2013/12/30/9-questions-about-south-sudan-you-were-too-embarrassed-to-ask/

Syria http://www.dailystar.com.lb/News/Middle-East/2013/Dec-31/242774-more-than-130000-dead-since-start-of-syria-conflict.ashx#axzz2p3y156Kl

Fresh Ukraine protests draw thousands onto Kiev streets http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-25543067

China and Japan http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/the-old-hatreds-behind-the-china-japan-provocation-war-1.2452679

CAR http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2013/12/30/car-children-beheaded.html

Thailand http://www.voanews.com/content/Thai-pm-seeks-reconciliation-despite-threat-of-more-protests/1820651.html

Volgograd, Russia http://security.blogs.cnn.com/2013/12/30/second-deadly-blast-hits-russian-city-of-volgograd-ahead-of-2014-sochi-olympics/

Train collision and derailment in North Dakota http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2013/12/30/train-fireball-northdakota.html

Solar pole reversal SolarPoleFlipSun ‘flips upside down’ while reversing magnetic poles http://rt.com/news/sun-upside-down-flip-990/

Solar cycle information http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_cycle

Comet Lovejoy http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap131202.html

How would you change the course of an Earth-threatening asteroid? Gravitational Tractor. http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap130221.html

El Salvador volcano http://edition.cnn.com/2013/12/29/world/americas/el-salvador-chaparrastique-volcano-erupts/index.html?eref=edition

Mount Etna erupts again http://english.pravda.ru/photo/album/7522/

‘Big, crazy storm of contrasts’ rips South, Northeast http://www.usatoday.com/story/weather/2013/12/21/tornado-ark-weather-tenn/4161975/

Stranded antarctica ship http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/dec/31/helicopter-rescue-beckons-stranded-antarctica-sea-/?utm_source=RSS_Feed&utm_medium=RSS

Greenland underground lake http://www.statecolumn.com/2013/12/newly-discovered-greenland-underground-lake-could-solve-mysteries-of-global-warming/

New stomach virus, “superbug” http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/health/2013/01/26/doctors-warn-of-new-stomach-superbug-hitting-u-s/

Stock markets around the globe http://money.cnn.com/data/world_markets/americas/

Several news articles caught my eye today, especially in light of Russia’s recently re-opened military base in the far north — the Artic Circle north.

NorthEast Passage tumblr_mtxud0Ed0h1qgpcs1o1_500

Arctic Assembly meets to set rules for exploration, Mineral wealth, shipping lanes coveted as icecap melts
The Washington Times
October 10, 2013

“The Arctic is America’s backyard. It is one of the most resource-rich areas in the world. American companies and the [its] economy need to have a strong Arctic” plan, says Iceland President Olafur Ragnar Grimsson, co-founder of the Arctic Circle Assembly.

Seeking to avoid a polar free-for-all in one of the planet’s last untapped economic frontiers, representatives from more than three dozen nations will gather in Reykjavik, Iceland, starting Saturday to try to set some rules for tapping the natural resources and navigating new shipping lanes opening in the Arctic.

Reflecting the intense interest in the frozen north’s economic potential, the inaugural gathering of the Arctic Council Assembly has attracted delegates not only from the United States, Canada, Russia and other border nations, but from countries as far as way as China, Brazil and Pakistan.

Alice Rogoff, publisher of the Alaska Dispatch and a member of the new assembly’s advisory panel, said she expects the Arctic to become an economic powerhouse in the coming years, comparing its potential to China’s economic growth since 1980.

The Arctic is “going from very little, virtually nothing in terms of the world’s large capital flows, to what will become the dominant region of the Earth within 50 years,” she said. “The U.S. could be more engaged and could be more involved,” Mr. Grimsson said. “The Arctic is America’s backyard. It is one of the most resource-rich areas in the world. If America wants to continue to be a big economy in the 21st century, American companies and the American economy need to have a strong Arctic” plan.

In 2012, the Arctic lost more sea ice than had ever been recorded. Since 1980, the Arctic has lost approximately 40 percent of its sea ice cover, according to NASA glaciologist Walt Meier. One upshot from the receding ice is the opening of the Northeast Passage, a shipping lane connecting South Korea to northwest Russia. With up to four ice-reduced months during summer, shipping companies hope more cargo that once had to navigate the Suez Canal can be shipped along this route.

Polar scientists believe 20 percent to 25 percent of the undiscovered oil and natural gas in the world is in the Arctic region. In addition to the oil, natural gas and rare minerals, the Arctic holds rich fishing regions and potential new clean-energy sources.

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/oct/10/arctic-assembly-meets-to-set-rules-for-exploration/?page=2#ixzz2hPdhbjqV

northwest-passage-mapNorthwest Passage crossed by first cargo ship, the Nordic Orion
Reuters 27/09/13

LONDON — An ice-strengthened sea freighter has become the first bulk carrier to traverse the Northwest Passage through Canada’s Arctic waters, heralding a new era of commercial activity in the Arctic. Traveling with a Canadian Coast Guard icebreaker, the 75,000 deadweight-tonne Nordic Orion left Vancouver on Sept. 17 carrying 15,000 metric tons of coal.

Canada’s enthusiasm for developing a time-saving route in global trade through the Northwest Passage arises from a rivalry with Russia, which has developed at least 10 ports on the competing Northern Sea Route, or Northeast Passage.

“The Northwest Passage is more than 1,000 nautical miles shorter than the traditional shipping route through the Panama Canal and will save time, fuel and reduce carbon dioxide emissions,” said Nordic Bulk Carriers, the Danish owner of the ship. The Nordic Orion’s route will shave an estimated four days of travel time.

http://news.nationalpost.com/2013/09/27/northwest-passage-crossed-by-first-cargo-ship-the-nordic-orion-heralding-new-era-of-arctic-commercial-activity/

nordicorionCommercial Arctic shipping a long way off, Maersk boss says
NUNATSIAQ NEWS / News Around the Arctic
October 11, 2013

Head of global shipping firm not keen on Northern Sea Route, Northwest Passage. Despite all the hype that attended the recent voyage of the Nordic Orion through the Northwest Passage last month, the chief executive officer of Maersk, the world’s biggest container shipping line, says Arctic sea routes won’t carry large volumes of commercial shipping any time soon.

“We will see some single ships sailing through the Arctic… But the reality is, for commercial shipping such as container shipping, this is not something that will happen within the next 10 to 20 years,” Nils Andersen, the head of the huge Moller-Maersk shipping conglomerate, told the London-based Financial Times Oct. 6.

The Nordic Orion, a 225-metre vessel owned by Nordic Bulk Carriers of Denmark, generated many headlines across Canada recently when it carried 15,000 tonnes of coal from Vancouver through the Northwest Passage to a steel plant in Finland.

Because the Nordic Orion’s owners sought and received Canadian permission, the voyage did not affect Canada’s legal position that the Northwest Passage is an internal Canadian waterway.

But the head of Maersk, which carries about 15 per cent of the world’s marine cargo, said he doesn’t expect to see much commercial shipping through routes like or Northern Sea Route north of Russia or the Northwest Passage. “The way global warming is going, of course there is the opportunity in a very far, very distant future that the northern sea route will open up and it will be a major shipping route. But it will definitely not be within the next 15 to 20 years in our opinion so it’s far too early to start constructing vessels for it,” Andersen told the Financial Times.

http://www.nunatsiaqonline.ca/stories/article_print/35582/

My “watching” patterns have changed dramatically in recent months.  Back in April 2013 God began to direct me to Himself and His works in these days. I am seeing Joel 2 and Acts 2 carried out around the globe, live on the internet and available on video.

The Bay of the Holy Spirit Revival began in Alabama in July 2010 when Nathan Morris, evangelist from Great Britain was a guest speaker at the Church of His Presence in Daphne, Alabama. What was supposed to be a day or two became several years.  This service in Silver Springs, Maryland in 2012 was especially meaningful, containing a prophetic message about Washington, DC:

The Bay Revival May 4, 2012

Visit the following websites for other powerful Bay Revival services, sermons, salvations, healings, multitudes of miracles, signs and wonders:

http://www.BayRevival.com
http://www.ShakeTheNations.com

The Welsh Outpouring of the Holy Spirit began at a small church in southeastern Wales, UK, with a miracle healing during a normal Wednesday night service. Victory Church UK is home of the ongoing revival, 60 days and counting as of today. Services are broadcast on Livestream beginning at 2:00 PM EDT a number of days a week.

http://www.victorychurch.co.uk/outpouring-update-14

God.tv has carried many live services showing God at work in the world, earlier in 2013 with Todd Bentley and Healing Awakening to the Nations. Videos of the Pretoria, South Africa services are available in the God.tv archives.

http://www.God.tv

There are many other nations around the world where similar things are happening, Australia, Philippines, South America, Canada, Korea, China, Scandinavia, Europe. Some are broadcast live, some just reported on later. I receive news about them via Facebook or Twitter, always on the lookout for additional locations.

I seldom watch my old favorite television shows anymore. I would rather watch and take part in what God is doing — and pray for a fresh outpouring of the Holy Spirit closer home here in America, here in Florence, SC, USA.

PotentiallyHazardousAsteroidsThere are currently 1,400 potentially hazardous asteroids that could pass close to Earth, according to latest data revealed by Nasa. An image mapping the orbits of all the potentially hazardous asteroids (PHAs) provides a graphic of the crowded cosmic activity. This graphic shows the orbits of all the known Potentially Hazardous Asteroids (PHAs), numbering over 1,400 as of early 2013. These are the asteroids considered hazardous because they are fairly large (at least 460 feet or 140 meters in size), and because they follow orbits that pass close to the Earth’s orbit

These asteroids are considered hazardous because they are fairly large – at least 460 feet or 140 meters in size. They are classified as PHAs because they follow orbits that are considered to pass close to the Earth’s, at or 7.5 million kilometres.

However, Nasa claims that being classified as a PHA does not mean that an asteroid will impact the Earth.
Scientists there claim that none of the asteroids shown in the image are considered a threat over the next 100 years. The group is planning to continue to track these asteroids so that their orbits can be refined and more precise predictions made of their future close approaches and impact probabilities.

As part of this effort it is working on the development of an infrared sensor that could improve its asteroid tracking capabilities, dubbed the Near Earth Object Camera (NEOCam) sensor. The NEOCam space mission will also search for the most favourable destinations for future exploration by humans or robotic missions.

Asteroids reflect visible light. This means that when searching for near-Earth objects with optical telescopes, the data collected can be deceiving. Depending on how reflective the object is, a small, light-coloured space rock can look the same as a big, dark one. Asteroids do, however, always emit infrared radiation.

‘When you observe a space rock with infrared, you are seeing its thermal emissions, which can better define the asteroid’s size as well as tell you something about composition,’ said Amy Mainzer, an author on the paper and principal investigator for NASA’s NEOWISE and NEOCam missions.

Asteroids emit most of their radiation at infrared wavelengths near about 10 microns (0.0004 inches), which humans perceive as heat. There is also relatively less radiation from stars and galaxies at these wavelengths, which simplifies detection of faint moving objects.

Once launched, the space-based telescope would be positioned at a location about four times the distance between Earth and the moon. From this lofty perch, NEOCam could observe the comings and goings of near Earth objects, including PHAs, without the impediments such as cloud cover and daylight.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2391291/Nasa-reveals-orbits-1-400-potentially-hazardous-asteroids-flying-close-Earth-ONE-map.html

SpaceNews
August 13, 2013

space-debris-density-illustrationWASHINGTON — The U.S. Air Force’s decision to shut down a key component of its Space Surveillance Network will weaken the service’s ability to accurately detect and characterize objects in Earth orbit, experts say. This computer illustration depicts the density of space junk around Earth in low-Earth orbit. Credit: ESA.

The space fence shutdown, ordered by Gen. William Shelton, commander of Air Force Space Command, also will reduce the overall capacity of the system, these experts said. At the same time, they suggested it could increase pressure on the Air Force to award a contract on a next-generation system, which has stalled amid a Pentagon-wide review of its acquisition plans.

According to two recent memos obtained by SpaceNews, the Air Force will shut down the aging Air Force Space Surveillance System, also known informally as the Space Fence, Sept. 1. The memos, from Austin Frindt, a contracting officer with Air Force Space Command, were addressed to Five Rivers Services of Colorado Springs, Colo., operator of the current Space Fence, which consists of a line of VHF radars stretching across the southern United States. [Top 10 Space Weapons]

Deployed in the 1960s, the VHF Space Fence includes three transmitter sites and six receiving stations. It is responsible for approximately 40 percent of all observations performed by the Air Force-run Space Surveillance Network, which includes other ground-and space-based sensor assets, said Brian Weeden, technical adviser at the Secure World Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to space sustainability.

“The Space Fence does a lot of heavy lifting,” said Dave Baiocchi, a senior engineer at the Rand Corp., an Air Force think tank in Santa Monica, Calif. Without it, “you’re missing some level of accuracy,” he said.

In a memo dated Aug. 1, Frindt said the Air Force was not exercising its option for a fifth year of a contract to provide management and logistical support for the nine field stations.

Lori Thomas, president of Five Rivers Services, declined to comment and referred questions to the Air Force.

“This is your notice to begin preparing the sites for closure,” the memo said. “A specific list of action items will be provided as soon as it is finalized.”

A follow-up memo dated Aug. 9 asked Five Rivers for an analysis of what it would cost to close the Space Fence sites. This memo said the system would be turned off Sept. 1.

In an email Aug. 5 Andy Roake, a spokesman for Air Force Space Command, pointed to the automatic budget cuts known as sequestration. “In this tough, sequestered budget environment, we’re considering many options, but for FY14, no final decisions have been made,” he said.

The memos suggest otherwise, asking for photographs of the closed sites, plywood on windows and weekly updates. Roake did not respond to follow-up questions by press time. A spokesman for the U.S. Strategic Command, which oversees the Joint Space Operations Center, referred questions to Space Command.

Though part of a broader surveillance network, the VHF Space Fence is crucial because it can track objects up to 24,000 kilometers away. Other ground-based sensors in the network generally track objects at altitudes lower than a few thousand kilometers, Weeden said.

“The Space Fence is very important as it gives an ‘uncued tracking’ capability,” Weeden said. “Because it’s constantly transmitting, it can detect objects without being tasked to do so. There are some other sensors in the network that can do uncued tracking to some degree, but the Space Fence is rather unique in the sheer size of the detection coverage it has.”

The Space Fence, along with operators at the Joint Space Operations Center, can observe objects down to the size of a basketball and make precise determinations of their characteristics, location and movement. Each month the system is responsible for logging more than 5 million observations of space objects, according to an Air Force fact sheet. [Worst Space Debris Events of All Time (Countdown)]

Experts said without the Space Fence, the Air Force will have a harder time knowing when orbital collisions have occurred.

“It will be more difficult and take longer to detect and catalog new pieces of debris, especially those from large breakups,” Weeden said. “And the loss of capacity likely means that we have less accurate orbits for a good portion of the space debris” in low Earth Orbit, he said.

In April, Shelton said two of the Space Fence’s receiver sites had been placed in cold storage, one in Glennville, Ga., and one in Hollandale, Miss., reducing the overall accuracy and effectiveness of the system. The change was made as part of the Air Force’s response sequestration, the across-the board-budget cuts that took effect in March.

In July, the Air Force released a request for proposals to operate the aging system beginning in September 2015 — one year after the Five Rivers Services’ contract was set to expire. The request said the Space Fence “has been identified as a critical defense system and, therefore, shall be manned on a 24-hour, 7-days-a-week, 365-days-a-year basis at transmitter sites and 8-hour, 7-days-a-week, 365-days-a-year basis at receiver sites.”

But as sequestration lingered, experts said, turning off the Space Fence may well have been the best of a bad set of options. Other sensors, they noted, have a dual mission that includes space surveillance and missile warning.

“Closing them down would have impacted those other missions and likely generated a lot more political heat from Congress,” Weeden said.

Meanwhile, an overdue contract to build a next-generation Space Fence is on hold due to the Defense Department’s recently completed Strategic Choices and Management Review, which examined the Pentagon’s options under three different funding scenarios for the next decade.

Baiocchi said he expected the closure of the current Space Fence to increase pressure on the Pentagon and Congress to fund a next-generation system, consisting of S-band radars, that would be capable of tracking golf ball-sized objects.

Lockheed Martin Mission Systems and Sensors of Moorestown, N.J., and Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems of Tewksbury, Mass., have developed competing designs for the new Space Fence.

Shelton said in July that engineers at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida were looking for ways to improve the current Space Fence as a contingency plan should the Pentagon elect not to go forward with the next-generation system.

http://www.space.com/22354-space-fence-military-orbital-surveillance.html

Another wave is coming

Posted: July 10, 2013 in Uncategorized

July 10, 2013

ChinaFloodsshirsoleiman20130518074516447‘China rainstorms death toll reaches 55’

The death toll from rainstorms that battered southern China this week has reached 55 with at least 14 others missing, Chinese authorities say. (Other news articles mention hundreds of cars/people trapped in tunnels.)

http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2013/05/18/304106/china-rainstorms-death-toll-reaches-55/
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July 9, 2013
(Also posted on Esther’s Petition)

The other day the Lord told me something I have had to think about a bit more. Another wave is coming, He said. A wave of what? I asked.

A wave of disaster, He said. In the United States. In the world. I thought about all the disasters that have been happening in the last couple of years, fires, floods, tornadoes, earthquakes, strange storms. Like the massive earthquake and tsunami in Japan.

Like Superstorm Sandy that hit the northeastern United States causing so much destruction. More fires and floods are still happening in America, even right now today. More disaster?! Why? I couldn’t NOT ask. Was God himself sending these disasters?

People and nations reap what they sow, He said. Sin has a dreadful harvest. People are earning — and receiving — wages of death. Voluntarily earning. I have called, and called, and called, and warned, and warned, and warned.

And disasters can be beacons of warning, like foghorns to prevent shipwrecks. Some hear and heed the warnings and souls are preserved. For those who are listening, revival is happening. They are being saved, delivered, rescued, healed! Souls, lives are being preserved.

But too many haven’t listened. They are still not listening, and another wave is coming. How many warnings will it take? Until the people stop sowing seeds of destruction, stop earning wages of death? Until they return to the only One who can rescue them?

“For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now.” (Romans 8:22 KJV)

SOLAR ACTIVITY SURGES
SpaceWeather.com
14 May 2013

SolarFlares2013MayA sunspot on the sun’s eastern limb is crackling with powerful X-class solar flares. Just-numbered AR1748 announced itself during the early hours of May 13th with an X1.7-class eruption (0217 UT), quickly followed by an X2.8-class flare (1609 UT) and an X3.2-class flare (0117 UT on May 14). These are the strongest flares of the year so far, and they signal a significant increase in solar activity. NOAA forecasters estimate a 40% chance of more X-flares during the next 24 hours.

All of these flares have produced strong flashes of extreme ultraviolet radiation. Here is the view of the latest eruption, which registered X3.2 on the Richter Scale of Solar Flares, from NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory.

The explosions have also hurled coronal mass ejections (CMEs) into space. Coronagraphs onboard the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory are tracking the clouds: movie. The planet in the CME movie is Mercury. Although the CMEs appear to hit Mercury, they do not. In fact, no planets were in the line of fire. However, the CMEs appear to be on course to hit NASA’s Epoxi and Spitzer spacecraft on May 15-16.

When the action began on May 13th, the instigating sunspot (just numbered “AR1748”) was hidden behind the sun’s eastern limb, but now solar rotation is bringing the active region into view. The next 24 to 48 hours should reveal much about the sunspot, including its size, magnetic complexity, and potential for future flares. For the moment, there is no reason to expect the explosions to stop. Stay tuned for updates.

http://www.spaceweather.com/

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Ice Tsunami
DailyMail Online
13 May 2013

IceTsunami2013MayIt could be a scene out of a 1950s horror film – an unstoppable ‘ice tsunami’ gradually moving ashore, destroying everything in its path. But video footage actually shows the weather phenomenon known as ice floe in action in Minnesota, North America, over the weekend. Strong winds are responsible for pushing this sheet of ice off the top of Lake Mille Lacs and up over the shoreline right up to resident’s doorsteps. Darla Johnson uploaded footage of a sheet of ice rising out of Milles Lacs Lake towards her home in Izatys Resort, Minnesota.

The ice flow phenomenon is caused by strong winds driving the ice ashore. Footage filmed by a homeowner shows the eerie ice shards slowly covering ground before eventually creeping into people’s home. National Weather Service Meteorologist Shawn Devinny says 30 to 40 mile an hour winds pushed the water into the ice, driving it ashore. The Department of Natural Resources says about 10 miles of shoreline are covered, with some reaching up to 30 feet high.

Massive ice floes rose out of a lake 600 miles north in Canada over the weekend, destroying a dozen homes and damaging fifteen others. Winds forced massive walls of ice onto the shores of Lake Dauphin, dwarfing homes in rural Manitoba, Canada on Friday. A dozen homes were destroyed and many others left uninhabitable after winds piled ice onto Ochre Beach Friday in an unusually large ice flow. By Friday night, a state of emergency had been declared in the town of Ochre River, a 188 miles northwest of Winnipeg.

Click here for video: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2323850/Ice-tsunami-captured-camera-rising-lake-destroying-homes-residents-watch-helplessly-shore.html

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“Slow-Motion Disaster” Is Swallowing Homes in Northern California
AllGov.com
13 May 2013

HouseSwallowedPhoto Robin and Scott Spivey walk past their home. It didn’t take former building inspector Scott Spivey long to figure out that something was terribly wrong when his house in Lake County, about 100 miles north of San Francisco, started developing cracks that rapidly turned into fissures.

Two weeks later, his garage lay 10 feet below street level and his neighbors’ homes were collapsing, but no one could tell them why it was happening. Resident Randall Fitzgerald told the Associated Press it was “a slow moving disaster.”

Within a short time, eight homes in the 30-year-old, hilly volcanic subdivision had to be abandoned and around two dozen more were threatened. The assumption was that the hill was somehow being eroded by water, but a dry winter and groundwater shortages seemed to belie that notion.

http://www.allgov.com/usa/ca/news/unusual-news/slow-motion-disaster-is-swallowing-homes-in-northern-california-130513?news=849998
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Couple Escapes As Landslide Destroys Cabin
Alaska Public Media
13 May 2013

LandslideRedoubtTwo people are safe after a massive landslide destroyed the cabin they were camping in Sunday morning (5-13-13) near Sitka. An air taxi pilot rescued the pair from a debris field estimated to be 20 feet deep.

All their belongings were buried in the slide. Their dog (Luna) remains missing. Kevin Knox, 41, and his girlfriend Maggie Gallin, 28, were staying at Redoubt Lake, a popular Forest Service recreation cabin about 15 miles southeast of Sitka. The cabin is located at the head of the valley, and is surrounded by steep mountain slopes and rocky cliffs that climb 4,000 feet above the surface of the lake.

“We had just tied the boat up and Maggie was in the cabin, and it just let loose — a huge piece off of the side of the mountain. I yelled for Maggie to run, to get out of the cabin. We started running down the beach. We were running along the lakeshore and got thrown into the water, trees kind of toppling on top of us. We both popped up three or four feet from each other. Then we got our wits about us and just tried to hunker down.”

Knox and Gallin were soaked to the skin. The cabin — and all their belongings — were under a debris field Knox thinks is about 20 feet deep. They wrung out clothes and tried to shelter as best they could until their scheduled pick up three hours later. Luna possibly escaped with Knox and Gallin, but remains missing.

http://www.alaskapublic.org/2013/05/13/couple-escapes-as-landslide-destroys-cabin/

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13 Incredible Pictures from the Washington State Landslide
The Blaze
28 March 2013

APTOPIX Washington LandslideGeologists and engineers are assessing the stability of a scenic Puget Sound area after a large landside thundered down a hillside, knocking one house off its foundation and threatening others.

That heavily damaged home and 33 others were ordered evacuated after the slide broke loose early Wednesday in the Ledgewood community on Whidbey Island, about 50 miles north of Seattle. Click link below for additional photographs.

http://www.theblaze.com/stories/2013/03/28/13-incredible-pictures-from-the-washington-state-landslide/

One day after it was first pumped to Israeli shores, valuable resource flows to processing plant for use in energy market
By Times of Israel staff and AP March 31, 2013, 11:08 pm 0

TamarLeaseNaturalGasRigMideast-Israel-Natrua_Horo-635x357Undated file photo of the Tamar Lease natural gas rig, located 90 kilometers west of the city of Haifa, northern Israel. (photo credit: AP/Albatross Aerial Perspective)

Natural gas from the offshore Tamar field reached Ashdod on Sunday night after it was pumped to Israeli shores for the first time Saturday, four years after its discovery.

The Tamar deposit, discovered in 2009 some 90 kilometers west of Haifa, holds an estimated 8.5 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.

On Saturday, hailed an “important day for the Israeli economy” by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, natural gas from the field was pumped to a newly erected facility on the coast of Ashdod, connected to the gas field via pipelines laid out on the ocean floor, 150 kilometers long and 16 inches wide.

On Sunday, the gas finally reached the Ashdod processing plant from which it will start to flow into the Israeli market.

This newly harnessed resource promises to be a major boon to both the country’s public and private energy needs.

The gas from Tamar is expected to help meet Israel’s energy needs for the next 20 years, Channel 2 said, and will save the economy some NIS 13 billion (some $3.5 billion) per year. Its ahead-of-schedule use will also save Israeli citizens some cash — lowering a planned rise in electricity costs to 6 percent, less than originally planned.

The Tamar deposit, and especially the heftier Leviathan, which was discovered in 2010, are expected to provide Israel with enough natural gas for decades and transform the country, famously empty of natural resources, into an energy exporter.

Leviathan, which boasts an estimated 16 to 18 trillion cubic feet of gas, is expected to go online in 2016, the approximate time when exports are expected to begin.

The discoveries are just a portion of the huge reserves in the Levant Basin, which the United States Geological Survey estimated in 2010 holds some 122 trillion cubic feet of recoverable natural gas.

http://www.timesofisrael.com/natural-gas-from-tamar-field-reaches-israel/

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Future War: Israel’s Massive Natural Gas Reserve Discoveries Draw Enemy Eyes
Massive Leviathan, Tamar Natural Gas Fields Poised to Transform Israel Into Energy Exporter
From The Hashmonean online
16 June 2010

Tamar&LeviathanMapFor 62 years we have made the desert bloom, innovating water & drip irrigation technologies which have literally changed agriculture and the planet itself. Sadly, our quest for the desert’s more famous yield – Oil has been less than fulfilling. Surrounded by the world’s largest energy exporters Israel until now has been no pun intended, dry.

The planet is addicted to oil, nearly everything today is seemingly petroleum based. But the age of big oil is slowly coming to an end. Oil is dirty as evidenced by the tragic disaster off the US Gulf Coast. Developed economies are scrambling to move and develop cleaner burning technologies to both supply our fuel, as well as skyrocketing global energy needs. Coal & Oil aren’t going anywhere just yet, but the next century may belong to Natural Gas as the new big boy of global energy.

Tamar & Leviathan

The last 2 years have seen blessings bestowed on the State of Israel with the discovery of massive natural gas fields in the Eastern Mediterranean by Texas based Noble Energy & Israeli consortiums. Discoveries within arms reach of the Israeli coast and within our territorial waters. In 2009 the Tamar Israel discovery rippled across energy markets, Tamar discoveries can power 50% of Israel’s energy needs for the next 4 decades.

Now in 2010 a new unbelievably larger reserve named Leviathan may yield massive amounts of natural gas, estimated at possibly twice the size of Tamar! If Leviathan yields, it can transform Israel into a global energy exporter.

The Leviathan natural-gas site off the Haifa shore could be twice the size of the Tamar prospect, the largest gas discovery globally in 2009, and position Israel as a gas exporter in coming years, US oil operator Noble Energy Inc. said Thursday.

“Today is a day of celebration for all of us. The State of Israel is an energy independent country,” Yitzhak Tshuva, controlling shareholder of Delek Group, said Thursday. Delek is a partner in the Leviathan natural-gas find through its subsidiaries Avner Oil and Gas LP and Delek Drilling LP, who each own 22.67 percent. […]

“In March, when I was last in Israel, I said that Noble Energy planned to be here for decades to come,” Noble Energy chairman and CEO Charles Davidson said Thursday. “I am thrilled that today’s announcement substantiates the potential of a new and significant energy basin in the eastern Mediterranean, which, if successful, could position Israel as a potential energy exporter in future years.

“I would like to congratulate the State of Israel on the discoveries of the last year and a half, which have the potential to strengthen the economy and security of Israel. Noble is honored to be working with our Israeli partners in this historic development.” […]

Noble has to date been a gracious partner, aware of the delicate needs in Israel to both drive profit and secure the State energy wise. By the same token, Noble and its consortium of Israeli partners will require the State of Israel to tap these reserves. Apart from licenses, there are unique security needs, as well as substantial infrastructure investments needed which will largely fall on Israel to supply.

Lebanon & Its Embarrassing, Ugly Islamic Step Child – Hezbollah

Of course, If Israel has it, you can rest assured Hezbollah wants to lay its greedy little Islamofacist hands on it. The exploratory permits licensed to Noble and its partners where these discoveries are being made are clearly off Israeli waters.
tamar

The 2009 Tamar Discovery Off the Coast of Haifa

The Lebanese know that the messy little country they have thanks to their pals like Syria & Hezbollah will not draw the billions in foreign exploratory & drilling investment needed to tap whatever reserves may be off their own coast. That has not stopped Lebanon jealously eyeing Israel’s new reserves, or Hezbollah from issuing threats. After all, Israel belongs to them as per Hezbollah ‘logic’ – Muslim lands occupied by Zionist invaders!

Hizbullah: Israel’s gas belongs to us

Hizbullah claims that that the natural gas fields recently discovered in the Mediterranean, belong to Lebanon and warned Israel against extracting gas from them. Iranian English language paper “Tehran Times” quotes Hezbollah’s executive council chief Hashem Safieddine as saying that it would not allow Israel to loot Lebanese gas resources.

Earlier this week, Lebanese parliamentary speaker Nabih Berri told “AFP”, “Israel is racing to make the case a fait accompli and was quick to present itself as an oil emirate, ignoring the fact that, according to the maps, the deposit extends into Lebanese waters. Lebanon must take immediate action to defend its financial, political, economic and sovereign rights.”

Marine law expert Amir Cohen-Dor of the S. Friedman & Co. told “Globes” that the Dalit and Tamar gas fields are within Israel’s contiguous economic zone, and that under the 1982 UN Law of the Sea Convention, Israel can exploit resources in its economic zone.

Gas War Zone?

Both Hezbollah & the Lebanese Parliament which are today one & the same are getting in on the threats. Make no mistake, this is a threat against infrastructure, pipelines, rigs, shipping and investment needed to tap the reserves that will all be required in the future. The Lebanese have gone so far as to issue veiled war threats..

Lebanese daily “As-Safir” today accused Israel of stealing Lebanon’s natural gas.

Lebanese parliamentarians made similar accusations following the discovery of the Tamar and Dalit gas reserves in 2009.

“As-Safir” correspondent Halami Mussa wrote, “Israel plans to steal natural gas from the territorial waters of Lebanon.” He claims that “the reserves are located outside the territorial waters of Israel and are in Lebanese territory.” […] “a serious political and economic issue”, which could be cause for a diplomatic dispute between Israel and Lebanon.

Mussa said, “The area where the seismic survey was carried out is offshore from the coast of Lebanon, between the international border of Palestine and Cyprus.” He utterly ignores the presence of Israel, but says, “Israel, which received the mandate from Britain, which has no rights to Palestine, gave to some of the license to American companies without any right to do so.”

The Ministry of National Infrastructures Map of Petroleum Rights shows that the Tamar license, as well the licenses that make up the Leviathan structure are located west and northwest of Haifa, south of the Israel-Lebanese border

Potential for conflict is real

With Israeli sovereignty being questioned as usual by Islamists & terrorists, and Lebanon laying absurd claim to Israeli natural gas discoveries the potential for conflict is real. Israeli withdrawals from Lebanon have been certified by the UN, yet that did not stop Hezbollah from launching a war in 2006. The Israeli coastal demarcations are also clear, there is little reason to believe that will stop Hezbollah or its patrons from trying to initiate conflict, terrorism & violence either.

This is part and parcel of the Noble partnership with Israel. Infrastructure – both sea based and land based to process the LNG will need to be patrolled, secured. The State may even be forced into war to secure safe resource extraction.

Turkish Non-Delight!

The notion of Israel becoming an energy player will drive the Iranians and their lapdogs mad, that is to say on top of their already certifiable Islamist state of psychoness. Further, Turkish relations with Israel have been spiralling and it has less to do with Gaza aid flotillas, more to do with large economic interests such as these Gas discoveries.

Israel is poised to knock the Turks a few pegs down on the international scale if it starts exporting large quantities of LNG. This threatens Turkish LNG pipeline plans from Russia, potentially removing them from a profitable picture if Israel begins large sea based exports of LNG to Europe & Asia in the coming decades…

Peace and even clean burning energy in the Middle East does not come cheap.

http://hashmonean.com/2010/06/16/future-war-israels-massive-natural-gas-reserve-discoveries-draw-enemy-eyes/