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Thursday, September 29, 2022

A global study examining more than 30,000 umbilical cord blood samples recently found PFAS in every single one. Worse, these samples were up to five years old"meaning PFAS have been nearly ubiquitous for longer than we otherwise might have thought. read more

Britain is in a self-inflicted financial crisis, years in the making, that threatens to accelerate the economy's dive into recession -- and the country's new prime minister is coming under intense pressure to blink.

The shift to electric vehicles is seen as a necessary move as Earth faces the ever-growing impacts of climate change, but it could put a severe strain on infrastructure.

At least 200,000 Russians left the country after President Vladimir Putin's mobilization order in an exodus that's causing turmoil at the borders and stirring fears in neighboring states about potential instability.

Wednesday, September 28, 2022

The National Hurricane Center put out a special advisory at 7 a.m. to say that Hurricane Ian had strengthened to 155 mph maximum sustained winds, just 2 mph below Category 5 strength. The center said it could have that strength just before landfall at 2 p.m. Wednesday.


Fingers Point At Russia In Baltic Undersea Pipeline Attack

...At the time of writing, no EU member appears to have officially alleged that any specific actors may have been responsible for these apparent attacks, though officials in a number of countries within the bloc have made statements similar to Borrell's. The U.S. government has also shied away from attributing responsibility so far, though it has come to similar conclusions. Pentagon Press Secretary Air Force Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder said today that the U.S. military is sharing pertinent information with its allies about the "apparent acts of sabotage." ...

Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki did allude to Russian culpability yesterday by drawing a direct connection between the pipeline incidents and the war in Ukraine. Ukrainian presidential adviser Mykhailo Podolyak also alleged Russia was responsible.

For its part, the Kremlin has denied any involvement, with Putin's personal spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, saying today that speculation that Russia was behind the leaks was "stupid." Peskov offered no further information or counter-accusations.

There are entirely unsubstantiated conspiracy theories, which Russian state and non-state actors are amplifying, circulating already that the U.S. government, or other actors working in cooperation with it, were responsible. Spreading misinformation and disinformation, or enabling their spread, are common Russian government tactics to deflect attention from its own malign activities. ...

These insinuations have been based in part on the presence of a U.S. Navy amphibious assault ship, the USS Kearsarge, and a P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol plane, among other assets, in Baltic Sea around the time the leaks were reported. The U.S. military routinely operates in the region and has publicly stepped up its presence as part of efforts to bolster NATO's posture in light of the war in Ukraine. No hard evidence has been put forward to link American forces to the pipeline incidents in any way....

A remark from President Joe Biden in February before Russia's all-out invasion of Ukraine that the Kremlin's increasingly hostile actions toward its neighbor could lead to there "be no longer a Nord Stream 2," has also resurfaced. There is no indication whatsoever that this was anything but a comment on the potential diplomatic pressure the U.S. government would exert on German authorities to at least freeze that specific pipeline project, something that very publicly happened.

All this being said, there are indications that Western intelligence agencies are increasingly of the view that the Russian government, or actors acting on its behalf, was responsible for the pipeline leaks. The Times newspaper in the United Kingdom, citing an unnamed U.K. "defense source," reported today that a "likely scenario" for the attacks involved Russian uncrewed underwater vehicles, deployed from a mothership vessel of some kind on the surface, possibly something as innocuous as a fishing boat. Those undersea drones would then have laid explosive devices along the Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines.

According to The Times story, the explosives could have been planted weeks or even months ago as part of a "premeditated and planned" operation. This detail follows a separate report from the German magazine Der Spiegel yesterday that said the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) has passed along warnings to authorities in Berlin about the possibility of future attacks on Nord Steam 1 and 2 this past summer....

More in the article...

From the NHC

Hurricane Ian Public Advisory

STORM SURGE: The combination of storm surge and the tide will cause
normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters
moving inland from the shoreline. The water could reach the
following heights above ground somewhere in the indicated areas if
the peak surge occurs at the time of high tide...

* Englewood to Bonita Beach, including Charlotte Harbor...12-18 ft
* Middle of Longboat Key to Englewood...6-10 ft
* Bonita Beach to Chokoloskee...8-12 ft
* Chokoloskee to East Cape Sable...5-8 ft

12-18 foot storm surge....

That is not a wave. It is a wall of water 12-18 feet tall coming at you.

I am still concerned about how far a cornered Pres Putin will go.

Putin fires deputy defence chief amid supply failures

...Gen Dmitry Bulgakov, a deputy defence minister, was removed from his role on Saturday, the defence ministry said on Telegram.

The ministry said the 67-year old was "released" to transfer into a new role.

He will be replaced by Col Gen Mikhail Mizintsev, who managed Moscow's brutal siege at the port city of Mariupol....

Gen Mizintsev, who was dubbed "the Butcher of Mariupol" by many Ukrainians, also led Russian forces in Syria and was accused of orchestrating a brutal bombing campaign that levelled the city of Aleppo.

The UK foreign office said he had used "reprehensible tactics" and committed "atrocities" in both the Ukrainian and Syrian conflicts when announcing sanctions against the 60-year old in March.

Mr Putin's personnel changes come amid reports that the Russian leader has taken personal charge of the war effort and has started issuing orders to generals in Ukraine himself. ...

40 Years of Data Confirm Hurricanes Are Getting Stronger. Climate Models Were Right

...The most powerful storms on our planet have grown substantially stronger, and almost forty years' worth of hurricane satellite imagery suggest a warming planet might be fuelling the changes.

According to the data, the likelihood of a hurricane developing into a category 3 storm or greater, with sustained winds of over 177 kilometres per hour (110 miles per hour), has increased by about 8 percent every decade since 1979.

"Our results show that these storms have become stronger on global and regional levels, which is consistent with expectations of how hurricanes respond to a warming world," says climate scientist James Kossin from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)....

@#5 ... If surges go as high as some meteorologists they say they might (8-16') with waves on top of that there's gonna be massive devastation. ...

As a meteorologist, Hurricane Ian is the nightmare storm I worry about most

...Nightmare fuel

This is not hyperbole. If you live in Houston you probably know that I have a local meteorology website known as Space City Weather. The site's tagline is literally "hype-free forecasts for Houston." I am known as the "no-hype" guy. And let me tell you, Hurricane Ian is the kind of nightmare storm that I worry about most. It is the kind of storm that destroys a community forever, knocks the power out for weeks or, in some locations, months. Beaches are erased. Populations leave and never come back.

There are no silver linings with such weather, but it is true that Ian's track has steadily bent more eastward than expected. As a result the densely populated Tampa Bay region, with more than 3 million people, is now far enough away to escape a catastrophic storm surge. Instead, Ian will push a wall of water into Fort Myers and Cape Coral areas. This metro area has a population of about 750,000. To the south of this community, where the worst of the surge and winds will occur, lie the Florida Everglades. While pushing so much salt water into this natural environment has its own consequences, fewer people lie in harm's way.

As a forecaster, that doesn't really matter to me. I'm looking at the terrifying, shocking, and yes, breathtaking satellite imagery of Ian and thinking about what might have been had this storm traversed the Gulf of Mexico and struck my community. In my darkest dreams, it's the worst kind of storm I can conjure.

I feel sick....

To the Drudge community in Florida, be safe....

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