(NaturalNews) In one of the sillier stories of a historically silly year, Japanese authorities are now bribing elderly drivers to give up their driver’s licenses — in exchange for coupons that will lower the cost of ramen noodles. No, this is not an article from The Onion. This is happening in real life.
Why would Japan ask such a thing of their elderly? It has a lot to do with the fact that they seem to be putting a lot of innocent lives at risk by remaining on the road. Yaron Steinbuch of The New York Post reports, “The offer comes amid a spate of deadly accidents caused by vehicles driven by the elderly — a growing problem in a country where 4.8 million people aged 75 or older have a license. Those who relinquish their license will receive a certificate that will cut prices from 590 to 500 yen – about $5.20 to $4.43.”
If the authorities are actually concerned about the well-being of these elderly individuals, you have to question just how healthy a diet of ramen noodles could possibly be. They’re historically filled with sodium, which is not exactly what people who are coming up on the last years of their lives should be consuming on a regular basis, if at all.
Still, at this time, the government is not forcing elderly citizens to hand in their driver’s licenses, leaving this a completely optional decision. Though it is extremely strange and something that is easy to poke fun at, it is a far cry from fascism and that’s a very good thing. During an era when government overreach has become the norm, it’s nice to see the powers that be trying to get creative in order to achieve their goals. It may not be a good idea and it may not even work, but at least they aren’t trying to oppress people based on their age.
So where do you stand on this issue? Should elderly people be allowed to drive after if they pass all the requirements necessary?
The Soloman Islands were specifically forecast to see large earthquake activity this week (after several weeks of relative silence).
The earthquake forecast for the Soloman Islands was issued on August 8, 2015 — issued for a 7 day time period to watch the region.
In the past 7 days, three different large earthquakes struck the warned area. See the full earthquake forecast video here:
In addition to seeing the large earthquake activity in the Soloman islands, the other area which was warned in the earthquake forecast (South Japan) is now under alert / evacuations due to thousands of earthquakes near Sakurajima Volcano, with an impending very large eruption now possible.
The nearby Sendai Nuclear power plant is also under serious warning, locals evacuating, and “massive tectonic deformation” currently taking place (August 15):
TOKYO (Reuters) – A small volcanic eruption at a Japanese hot springs resort not far from Tokyo prompted authorities on Tuesday to further limit access to the area, warn that more eruptions were possible and urge a handful of people to evacuate.
Japan, one of the world’s most seismically active nations, has suffered a recent spate of eruptions, including one that forced the evacuation of a southern island. In September, 63 people died when a peak crowded with hikers suddenly erupted.
Volcanic ash was spat from a valley on Mount Hakone, which has been belching out unusual amounts of steam in recent months, forcing officials to close part of the resort at the start of the spring tourist season.
There were no reports of injury or damage, and roughly 40 people were urged to evacuate.
Japan’s Meteorological Agency raised the warning level on the mountain to 3 from 2, closing a broader area, and an agency official said activity in the area, some 80 km (50 miles) west of Tokyo, seemed to have risen “to a new level”.
“It was an extremely small scale eruption, but there is the chance of a larger one that could affect a wider area,” he told a news conference.
Hakone is a resort famed for its hot springs and views of Mount Fuji. More than 21 million people visited in 2014, including 217,000 from overseas, the Hakone town office said on its website.
White clouds, apparently steam, billowed up from vents in the stark Owakudani, “Great Boiling Valley”, the 1,044-metre (3,425 ft) high area around a crater created during an eruption of Mount Hakone 3,000 years ago.
Predicting the scale of any eruption is hard because the mountain last erupted 800 years ago, said volcanologist Toshitsugu Fujii, an emeritus professor of Tokyo University.
“If hot water or magma becomes involved, it could explode at a deeper level, and there would probably be very little warning,” he said.
“Things are now taking place at a shallow level and probably it won’t go that far. But you can’t say when that might change.”
Fujii did say it was highly unlikely that Hakone’s activity foretold an eruption of iconic Mount Fuji, which used to erupt every 30 years but has been silent since 1707.
A catastrophic eruption of the 3,776-metre-high (12,390-ft-) peak could rain some 10 cm of ash on Tokyo, located 100 km to the northeast.”
Here is a translation from a Spanish source:
30/06/2015 (June 30, 2015):
Raisealert levelaftera small eruptionat a nearbyvolcanoto Tokyo
“The Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) today ordered to evacuate the vicinity of Mount Hakone, located about 80 kilometers southwest of Tokyo, having confirmed a small eruption in it.
Evacuate the area is in the so-called Owakudani Valley, on the slopes of the mountain, where there are two houses, eight hotels and hostels, a spa, a business and 12 houses that are rented to vacationers, and where a total lie 40 people, public broadcaster NHK reported.
On the occasion of the eruption, the JMA has high elevation alert, which consists of five levels, from step 2, it is advised not to approach the crater or access adjoining areas considered at risk, to 3, asking not to approach Mount the environment, according to the agency reported.
The agency confirmed today that the Mount recorded on the eve a small eruption after detecting new vents and ash accumulation by the volcano spits.
The new alert level prohibits access to a perimeter of one kilometer around the Owakudani Valley, a popular spa area on the slopes of Hakone that is under close surveillance since May, when the JMA detected the possibility of an eruption by volcanic earthquakes increase.
The agency has stressed the danger of landslides and the possibility of ash clouds spewed by the volcano in the Owakudani.”
Update 17:48 UTC : The last report from FDMA mentions 21 injuries from whom 2 severely
Update 08:37 UTC : Hiroshima: 9 injuries, 12 houses in Kure town damaged (walls collapsed), water pipes broke Okayama: 5 injuries, 3 houses damaged in Okayama town, Kurashiki and Mizushima (factory of Mitsubishi motors) Oita: 2 injuries, water pipes broke + rockfall Yamaguchi: 2 injuries Ehime: 1 injury Kochi: 1 injury
Update 22:22 UTC : The total number of injuries has risen in the past couple of hours to 13.
Update 19:40 UTC : 4 more injuries reported – 2 in Yamaguchi and 2 in Oita prefectures
Update 18:45 UTC : Another injury in Okayama and some damage has been reported in addition to our earlier updates.
Update 18:20 UTC : Local newsmedia are reporting 3 injuries so far in Okayama, none of them seriously. 2 older woman and a 3-month old baby have been injured and transported to the nearest hospital. 2 other injuries in other areas. All injuries are due to escaping the house while the shaking was going on.
Update 17:37 UTC : Max Wyss, specialized in injuries/fatalities theoretical computing, indicates NO fatalities and a max. of 10 injured. Max Wyss used data with an epicenter below land where local JMA Japan puts the epicenter in the see. Earthquake-report.com does not expect serious damage because of this earthquake but mainly because of the depth of the epicenter (preliminary reports are stating 80 km). Deep earthquakes are not as dangerous as shallow ones.
Update 17:31 UTC : JMA Japan reports a Magnitude of M6.1 at a depth of 80 km. NO news yet from the Japanese Fire Department who normally reports in damage
Update 17:23 UTC : Intensity values (5+ is considered by Earthquake-report.com as potentially damaging.:
5+ Ehime-ken Nan-yo
5- Hiroshima-ken Hokubu, Hiroshima-ken Nanseibu, Ehime-ken Chuyo, Kochi-ken Seibu, Yamaguchi-ken Tobu, Yamaguchi-ken Chubu, Oita-ken Hokubu, Oita-ken Chubu and Oita-ken Nambu
106 km SW of Hiroshima-shi, Japan / pop: 1,143,841 / local time: 02:06:53.0 2014-03-14
52 km N of Ōita-shi, Japan / pop: 448,907 / local time: 02:06:53.0 2014-03-14
16 km N of Kunisaki-shi, Japan / pop: 32,781 / local time: 02:06:53.0 2014-03-14
Most important Earthquake Data:
Magnitude : 6.3
Local Time (conversion only below land) : 2014-03-14 02:06:50
UFOs Over Japan On First Week Of 2014, VIDEOs, UFO Sighting News.
Date of sighting: First week of Jan 2014
Location of sighting: Japan
These UFOs were caught in the sky over Japan on the first week of 2014. Sure they have a little resemblance to meteors however if you look carefully you will notice that often the objects tail disappears completely giving us a visual of the actual craft. Sometimes alien craft do not need to cloak…they just change the appearance of the UFO to make it look like a natural phenomenon…that not so natural after all. SCW
The new island of Niijima at Nishino-shima, south of Japan, seen on November 21, 2013. Image: Japan Coast Guard
Somehow as November slipped by, I missed marking the 50th anniversary of the eruption at Surtsey off the coast of Iceland. This eruption started as a submarine one that was large and sustained enough to produce a new island in the North Atlantic. These sorts of events are fairly rare. Most of the time a new volcanic island emerges, it is quickly eroded by wave action. This is due to the nature of the material that constructs those early volcanic island, that being volcanic tephra. The island is more-or-less a pile of loose debris piling up until it reaches the surface. In order for the island to have much lasting power, it needs to emerge from the sea and erupt for long enough to start producing more resistant lava flows that will keep the waves from washing away the island.
Why do I bring this up now? Well, it seems we have an eruption like Surtsey occurring in the middle of the Pacific Ocean south of Japan. A new eruption at Nishino-shima has breached the surface and started to produce a small island (see above) of black volcanic tephra. The new island (being called Niijima) still looks small, with some reports putting the island at a cozy 200 meters (650 feet) across and 20 meters (65 feet) high — likely not something that would survive for long in the rough Pacific if it only grows to this size. The plume hasn’t been noticeable (at least to me) in any satellite imagery, but that could change some now that the island is above sea level. So far, there isn’t really any hazard for people who live near the remote island, but the Japanese Meteorological Agency has warned ships not to approach the crater. You can see the action in this Japanese Coast Guard video of the eruption, along with some great images of the eruption here. The new vent is just off the shores of another small island and some of the stills included in the news report show those classic “rooster tail” eruptions (see below) that go with these Surtseyan eruptions (named after the aforementioned Iceland event).
“Rooster tails” during the eruption of Niijima at Nishino-shima in Japan, seen on November 20, 2013. Image: Japan Coast Guard.
Nishino-shima is part of a caldera within the aptly-named Volcano Island arc (part of the Izu-Bonin-Mariana volcanic arc). There are a number of caldera along the act including Nishino-shima and the more famous Ioto (Iwo-Jima). The last major eruption from Nishino-shima was exactly 40 years ago, when another small island was produced by the volcano — potentially its only eruption in the last 10,000 years. Since then, discolored water has been spotted in the vicinity, suggesting submarine eruptions or active submarine fumaroles have been going since that 1974 eruption. However, this new activity is apparently the first to break the sea’s surface since those events 40 years ago. If you need something to read, there is a fascinating article at how quickly the new island at Nishino-shima was colonized by plants and arthropods after it formed in 1974 — just shows how quickly life will colonize new land.
Very dangerous Tropical Cyclone Phailin has made landfall on the northeast coast of India near the town of Gopalpur (population 7,000) at 16 UTC (noon EDT) Saturday, October 12, 2013. Phailin was weakening substantially at landfall, due to interaction with land, and was rated a Category 4 storm with 140 mph winds by the Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC), four hours before landfall. The pressure bottomed out at 938 mb in Gopalpur as the eye passed over, and the city reported sustained winds of 56 mph, gusting to 85 mph, in the eyewall. A 938 mb pressure is what one expects to find in a Category 4 storm with 140 mph winds, using the “Dvorak technique” of satellite wind and pressure estimation. Satellite images show that Phailin’s intense thunderstorms have warmed and shrunk in areal coverage, and radar out of Visakhapanam, India also shows a weakening of the storm’s echoes as it pushes inland. Phailin is bringing torrential rains of over an inch per hour, as estimated by microwave satellite instruments.
Figure 1. Radar image of Phailin at landfall. Image credit: IMD.
Figure 2. MODIS satellite image of Tropical Cyclone Phailin, taken at approximately 07:30 UTC on October 12, 2013. At the time, Phailin was a top-end Category 4 storm with winds of 150 mph. Image credit: NASA.
Damage from Phailin
Phailin is the strongest tropical cyclone to affect India in fourteen years, since the great 1999 Odisha Cyclone. That storm hit with maximum sustained winds of 155 mph, and brought a storm surge of 5.9 meters (19 feet) to the coast. Phailin should be able to drive a similar-sized storm surge to the coast, since it is larger in areal extent than the 1999 cyclone (although somewhat weaker, with winds perhaps 20 – 30 mph lower.) Phailin’s storm surge and Category 3 to 4 winds will cause near-catastrophic damage to a 50-mile wide swath of the coast where the eyewall comes ashore, and to the right. Hurricane Katrina was weaker at landfall than Phailin, but Katrina had hurricane-force winds that covered a much larger area, making Katrina’s storm surge much more devastating than Phailin’s will be. I think the main danger from Phailin will be from its winds. I am particularly concerned about Phailin’s wind damage potential in the city of Brahmapur (population 350,000), the 58th largest city in India. Brahmapur lies about ten miles inland, and will likely experience sustained hurricane-force winds for several hours. Phailin’s flooding potential is another huge concern, as rainfall amounts of 6 – 12 inches will fall along a swath over 100 miles inland, triggering life-threatening flash flooding.
How strong was Phailin?
Questions have been raised about the India Meteorological Department (IMD) assessments of Phailin’s strength, which were considerably lower than that of the U.S. Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC). Both centers use satellite estimates rather than direct measurements of the winds, so we don’t know which center is correct. It is true that satellite estimates using the same techniques give different results for the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans–i.e., a storm with the same appearance on satellite imagery will be weaker in the Atlantic than in the Pacific (see this chart of the differences.) It may be that this is the case in the Indian Ocean as well. IMD has looked at some buoy data to try and calibrate their satellite strength estimates, but high-end tropical cyclones are uncommon enough in the Indian Ocean that I doubt we really know whether or not Indian Ocean cyclones have the same winds as a hurricane in the Atlantic with the same satellite signature. Another thing to consider is that the IMD uses 10-minute average winds for their advisories, and JTWC uses 1-minute, so the winds in the IMD advisories will be lower by at least 6%, due to the longer averaging period. This issue could be cleared up if India had its own hurricane hunter aircraft; there have been some high-level discussions about India getting a C-130 aircraft like the U.S. Air Force uses to fly into tropical cyclones and take measurements of the actual winds.
Figure 3. MODIS satellite image of Typhoon Nari, taken at approximately 02:30 UTC on October 12, 2013. At the time, Nari was a Category 1 storm with winds of 90 mph. Image credit: NASA.
Typhoon Nari hits the Philippines
Thirteen people were killed and 2.1 million people lost power on the main Philippine island of Luzon afterTyphoon Nari hit on Friday night near midnight local time. Nari was a Category 3 typhoon with 115 mph winds a few hours before landfall. The core of the storm passed about 80 miles north of the capital of Manila, sparing the capital major flooding, but the storm dumped torrential rains in excess of ten inches to the northeast of Manilla. Passage over Luzon weakened Nari to a Category 1 storm, but it is already beginning to re-organize over the South China Sea between the Philippines and Vietnam. Nari is under moderate wind shear of 15 – 20 knots, which should keep intensification relatively slow, and increasing interaction with land will act to slow intensification on Sunday and Monday. Nari could be near Category 3 strength with 115 mph winds by Monday, and landfall in Vietnam is expected around 21 UTC on Monday.
Typhoon Wipha a threat to Japan
Category 1 Typhoon Wipha is intensifying as it heads northwest towards Japan, and the storm is expected to reach major Category 3 strength by Monday. By Tuesday, Wipha will recurve to the northeast and begin weakening, passing very close to Tokyo, Japan, sometime between 00 – 12 UTC on Wednesday. High winds and heavy rains from Wipha may be a concern for the Fukushima nuclear site, where workers continue to struggle with high radiation levels in the wake of the 2011 tsunami that damaged the reactors.
98L in the Eastern Atlantic weakening
A tropical wave (Invest 98L) located midway between Africa and the Lesser Antilles Islands is headed west to west-northwest at 10 – 15 mph. Satellite loops show that 98L has lost most of its organization and heavy thunderstorms since this morning. The disturbance is under a high 20 – 30 knots of wind shear, and the shear is expected to remain high for the next three days. The UKMET model shows some weak development of 98L by early next week, but the European and GFS models do not. In their 2 pm EDT Saturday Tropical Weather Outlook, NHC gave the disturbance 2-day development odds of 30%, and 5-day odds of 30%. 98L’s projected west-northwest track is expected take it close to the Northern Lesser Antilles Islands by Wednesday, according to the 00Z Saturday run of the European model.
Thanks go to wunderground member thunderfrance for posting the link to the weather station at Gopalpur, India.
Update 01:02 UTC : JMA JApan reports a Magnitude of M6.9 but also very deep at 400 km = the hot solid mantle of the earth. Harmless.
Very deep earthquakes cannot generate tsunamis. Maximum shaking was a JMA 4 at Iwanuma-shi Sakura*
JMA 4 shaking = * Most people are startled.
* Hanging objects such as lamps swing significantly.
* Unstable ornaments may fall.
Based on our experience with Japanese earthquakes, earthquake-report.com considers JMA 5+ intensity as a potentially dangerous shaking.
Very strong but also very deep earthquake in the Izu Islands region, but far enough from populated islands and the mainland to remain harmless. The depth has the consequence that this earthquake was felt in a wide radius, even in Tokyo (637 km).
Fukushima now in state of emergency, leaking 300 tons of radioactive water into the ocean daily
(NaturalNews) Japan’s nuclear watchdog has now declared the leak of radioactive water from Fukushima a “state of emergency.” Each day, 300 tons of radioactive water seeps into the ocean, and it’s now clear that TEPCO has engage in a two-and-a-half-year cover-up of immense magnitude.
“I believe it’s been leaking into the ocean from the start of the crisis two-and-a-half years ago,” disclosed a 12-year TEPCO veteran named Suzuki-san (SOURCE)
“There are still reactor buildings we haven’t gotten into yet,” said another worker named Fujimoto-san. “So there’s always the possibility of another explosion…”
TEPCO workers sprayed with wildly radioactive water while waiting for a bus
Just how out of control is the situation at Fukushima? It’s so out of control that TEPCO recently had to admit 10 of its workers were somehow — yeah, see if you can figure this out — sprayed with highly radioactive water while waiting for a bus.
“The workers’ exposure above the neck was found to be as much as 10 becquerels per square centimeter,” reports Bloomberg.com
How exactly did highly radioactive water manage to find its way to a bus stop in the first place? TEPCO isn’t sure. It’s confusing with all those radiation alarms going off all the time. In order to concentrate, the company has found it’s easier to just disable all the alarms and pretend nothing’s wrong.
The TEPCO cover-up
To fully grasp the extent of the TEPCO denial, realize that only recently did the company finally admit that radioactive groundwater has been leaking into the ocean. This follows years of stark denials from the company, whose executes have exhibited a remarkable ability to deny reality even when their own workers are dying in droves from cancer.
It’s no exaggeration to say that TEPCO’s downplaying of the full extent of the Fukushima disaster has put tens of millions of lives at risk — people who should have been warned about radiation but were denied that information due to the TEPCO cover-up.
“At this current time in July of 2013, Fukushima is 80 to 100x more expansive and more intense — letting out about 100x more of the radiation of Chernobyl,” reports Dr. Simon Atkins Phoenix Rising Radio on a BlogTalkRadio interview.
“The problem with Fukushima is that it’s not only continuing for 865 days… I mean, let’s wrap our minds around that for a second — it has been leaking out radiation in increasing volumes for 865 days.”
Japan is a society that shuns whistleblowers
Why has TEPCO been able to cover up the truth about Fukushima for so long? Because Japan is a society of mass conformity. The idea of keeping your head down and not “rocking the boat” is deeply embedded in Japanese culture.
Japan is not a nation of “rugged individualism” but of conformist acquiescence.
As a result, whistleblowers are shunned, and there is immense peer pressure to defend the status quo… even when it’s a terrible lie. This culture of conformity at all costs is precisely what allows companies like TEPCO to continue operating extremely dangerous nuclear power plants with virtually no accountability.
While Japan has entire museums dedicated to the horrifying history of two Japanese cities being bombed by the United States at the end of World War II, when Japan’s own power company is involved in a radiological disaster of similar magnitude, the entire incident gets swept under the rug. Radiation? What radiation? If the government says there’s no radiation, then there’s no radiation! After all, it’s invisible!
Why the U.S. government plays along with the cover-up
The U.S. government, of course, plays along with the charade because its own top weapons manufacturer — General Electric — designed and built the Fukushima Daiichi power plant in the first place. And the design decisions made by GE, such as storing spent fuel rods in large pools high above the ground, now look not just incompetent but downright idiotic. It turns out there was never any long-term plan to dispose of the spent fuel rods. The idea was to just let them build up over time until someone else inherited the problem.
So while Japan and the USA play this game of “let’s all pretend nothing happened,” citizens of both countries continue to be exposed to a relentless wave of deadly radiation that now dwarfs the total radiation release of Chernobyl (which the U.S. media played up in a huge way because the disaster made the Russians look incompetent).
The only reason TEPCO is finally getting around to admitting the truth in all this is because you can’t rig all the Geiger counters forever. Radiation follows the laws of physics and atomic decay, not the whims of lying politicians and bureaucrats. As a result, the real story eventually comes out as we’re starting to see right now.
The Fukushima disaster is likely to get far worse, if you can believe that
The upshot is that the Fukushima disaster is not only far worse than you’ve been told; it’s very likely going to be worse than you could ever imagine. The radiation leak isn’t plugged, in other words, and another explosion — which many experts believe might be imminent — would release thousands of times more nuclear material into the open environment.
Ultimately, the entire Northern hemisphere has been placed at risk by a bunch of corporate bureaucrats who thought building a nuclear facility in the path of a sure-to-happen tidal wave was a fantastic idea. Instead of acknowledging the problem and working to fix it like a responsible person would, our world’s top politicians and ass-coverers have decided it is in their best short-term interests to play along with the TEPCO fairy tale which ridiculously pretends that radioactive leaks can be controlled by wishful thinking.
Remember: Governments can lie about the national debt, health care costs, inflation and unemployment, but they cannot lie about radiation for very long. Sooner or later the physics of it all simply cannot be denied.
Update 08:37 UTC : A third injury is confirmed. It’s a man who fell and hurt his hip.
Update : 2 people injured is the somewhat surprising result of this earthquake at intermediate depth. No specific reports of damage as yet but we will continue to search for eventual damage
Update : JMA Japan reports a Magnitude of M6.0 at a depth of 50 km.
JMA5+ intensity at Ishinomaki-shi Kobuchihama
JMA5- intensity at Wakuya-cho Shimmachi-ura, Osaki-shi Kashimadai*, Ishinomaki-shi Monoucho* and Onagawa-cho Onagawahama*
Based on our experience with Japanese earthquakes, earthquake-report.com considers JMA 5+ intensity as a potentially dangerous shaking.
A very strong earthquake at intermediate depth struck the Ishinomaki area. Epicenter was offshore.
Image courtesy and copyright JMA Japan
57km (35mi) ESE of Ishinomaki, Japan
64km (40mi) ESE of Yamoto, Japan
75km (47mi) ESE of Matsushima, Japan
76km (47mi) E of Shiogama, Japan
340km (211mi) NE of Tokyo, Japan
Most important Earthquake Data:
Magnitude : 5.8
Local Time (conversion only below land) : 2013-08-04 12:28:52