Asia Science & Nature
‘Stop all illegal logging’ - Nation
Gov't gets bolder in actions against air pollution
PUB working with developer to improve drainage after Tampines flash flood
Delhi govt signs MoU with Fukuoka to combat air pollution
Watch the rare coincidence of 3 moons, last seen in 1866, on Jan 31
A once-in-a-blue moon occurrence on Jan 31
Fallen rain tree in Margaret Drive damages 2 cars and a lamp post
‘Stop all illegal logging’ - Nation
2018-01-18 02:01:59 GEORGE TOWN: The Malaysian Nature Society (MNS) is urging the relevant authorities to put a stop to all illegal and unsustainable logging in forest reserves to preserve the vital water catchment areas and their rich biodiversity. Its president Henry Goh said it was irregular for a large swathe of forest reserve of more than 500ha in Bukit Enggang, Sik, Kedah, to be logged without an Environment Impact Assessment (EIA)   Read More ...
Less wet weather expected in S'pore in second-half of January
2018-01-18 01:00:28 While the north-east monsoon is set to continue into the second-half of January, there will be fewer rainy days ahead. This could mean five to seven days of short thundery showers in the afternoon, which may extend into the evening on a few days, said the Meteorological Service Singapore (MSS) yesterday. In addition, the passage of Sumatra squalls is expected to bring widespread thundery showers, coupled with occasional gusty winds, between pre-dawn and the early morning on one or two days   Read More ...
Temporary road added to Tampines flood woes
2018-01-18 01:00:12 The building of an unauthorised road has been fingered as one factor that intensified the flash flood in Tampines Avenue 12 on Jan 8. A construction company had built a temporary access road over a drain there without seeking approval, national water agency PUB said yesterday. This prevented rain water from flowing out of the area quickly enough. An unblocked drain next to Tampines Avenue 12 was also already overwhelmed and could not cope with the deluge, said PUB   Read More ...
Online resource on birds launched
2018-01-17 18:26:57 A group of avian experts has recently launched ‘Birds of India’ (www.birdsofindia.org), a peer-reviewed online resource for nature enthusiasts. Databases such as orientalbirdimages.org (for pictures) and ebird.org (for species lists) are often used by avid bird watchers. The new website combines bird images and species-specific information in an attempt to offer a one-stop resource. Users can contribute images of birds by registering on the website   Read More ...
New light on the mysterious origin of Bornean elephants
2018-01-17 18:16:22 How did Borneo get its elephant? This could be just another of Rudyard Kipling's just so stories. The Bornean elephant is a subspecies of Asian Elephants that only exist in a small region of Borneo. Their presence on this southeastern Asian island has been a mystery. Scientists have discovered that elephants might have arrived on Borneo at a time of the last land bridge between the Sunda Islands in Southeast Asia   Read More ...
Gov't gets bolder in actions against air pollution
2018-01-17 15:04:35 The Ministry of Environment is pushing to make an odd-even vehicle ban mandatory for all drivers and expanding it across the country in response to exceptionally bad air pollution this week. Currently, the vehicle ban is issued only to Seoul, Incheon and Gyeonggi Province, subjecting only public organization vehicles and civil servant drivers ― the ban is issued when a daily average concentration for Particulate Matter(PM) 2   Read More ...
Blocked drain intensified Tampines flash flood: PUB
2018-01-17 08:45:24 SINGAPORE - A construction company built a temporary road over a drain, which intensified last week's flash flood in Tampines, it was revealed on Wednesday (Jan 17). National water agency PUB said the road near Tampines Avenue 12 caused rainwater to spill over the drain and flood the avenue on Jan 8. Director of PUB's catchment and waterways department Yeo Keng Soon said the contractor Hua Tiong did not seek approval from the water agency before building the access road   Read More ...
PUB working with developer to improve drainage after Tampines flash flood
2018-01-17 08:30:40 SINGAPORE: National water agency PUB will be working with the developer of a construction site to improve drainage at the access road to a work site, following a flash flood at Tampines Avenue 12 last week, PUB said in a media statement on Wednesday (Jan 17). Intense rains aggravated by the obstruction of an earth drain by a construction access road were why Tampines Avenue 12 experienced a flash flood on Jan 8, the agency said, adding that there was no blockage in the roadside drain along Tampines Avenue 12   Read More ...
Gov't to temporarily suspend five aged coal-fired plants to ease fine dust pollution
2018-01-17 08:19:26 SEOUL, Jan. 17 (Yonhap) -- The government plans to suspend the operation of five aged coal-fired power plants from March to June to help address worsening fine dust pollution, officials said Wednesday. It will also toughen environmental safety standards for fine dust, provide financial support for those trying to turn their aged diesel cars into liquefied petroleum gas vehicles and build indoor sports facilities for some 979 elementary, middle and high schools   Read More ...
Climate change may lead to flooding of heritage sites in Penang
2018-01-17 08:00:38 GEORGE TOWN: Penang may soon be inundated with more flooding in its low lying areas in tandem with the rise in sea levels, owing to the global climate change phenomenon which has been shaping the environmental reality of this century.   Read More ...
Specialised weather forecasts soon from IMD
2018-01-17 07:17:20 Soon, specialised weather forecasts could help take preventive measures against the spread of infectious diseases, plan power generation and also operation of train services. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) is coordinating with various government agencies for providing tailor-made weather forecasts for different sectors. In the next few years, the IMD plans to widen its wings in several spheres of weather services   Read More ...
Forest fires on the horizon as dry season sets in
2018-01-17 07:14:19 After a season of copious rains, the dry period of the past month has once again raised the spectre of forest fires in the State. Since December 28, the Forest Survey of India’s fire alert system — which sends SMS to stakeholders based on sightings onboard two earth-observing satellites — has been ringing almost constantly. In nearly two weeks, over 324 fire alerts have been sent   Read More ...
Bird census in 100 wetlands in State, Telangana
2018-01-17 07:12:12 The wetland experts and budding ornithologists under the banner of the Birds Society of Andhra Pradesh (BSAP) began waterbirds census in the at least 100 identified wetlands in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. The census would also count the migratory birds which set their winter home in the wetlands, from the Nowpada swamp, the Sompeta Beela (wetland), the Coringa sanctuary to the Kolleru lake, Asia’s largest freshwater lake spread over the Krishna and West Godavari districts   Read More ...
Science admissions at GITAM
2018-01-17 07:07:40 GITAM School of Science, Hyderabad, will offer admission into its B.Sc. & M.Sc. programmes for the academic year 2018-19. According to G. A. Rama Rao, Principal, applications have been invited for admission into three B.Sc. programmes - Chemistry, Physics and Statistics as one of the core subjects – and Mathematics & Computer Science as common subjects and two M.Sc. (Biotechnology & Chemistry-Pharmaceutical) Programmes   Read More ...
Delhi govt signs MoU with Fukuoka to combat air pollution
2018-01-17 06:08:25 With an objective to have increased awareness regarding the environment and air pollution in the Capital as well as address other issues jointly, the Delhi government on Tuesday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Fukuoka Prefectural Government (FPG). The MoU was signed between Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Governor of Fukuoka Prefecture, Hiroshi Ogawa. The main areas of focus of the twin city agreement will be environment, air pollution, culture, tourism and heritage, education and youth exchange programmes between Delhi and Fukuoka   Read More ...
Socio-Economic Research Centre sees GDP growth moderating to 5.1% in 2018
2018-01-17 06:02:13 KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian economy is expected to moderate to 5.1% this year due to the high base effect from 2017, said the Socio-Economic Research Centre. Its executive director Lee Heng Guie projected GDP to have grown 5.8%-6.0% in 2017. He also expects a 25-basis-point rate hike by the central bank next week. "Our baseline call is 25 basis points for a start   Read More ...
53% of youth struggle with basic maths: study
2018-01-17 06:00:29 While 74.6% of youth between the ages of 14 and 18 in Madurai were found to be able to read full sentences, nearly 53% were not able to divide numbers, the Annual Status of Education Report (ASER) 2017 has indicated. The survey throws light on the enrolment and basic learning abilities of young students across the country. The report, which was released on Tuesday, focussed on the theme ‘Beyond Basics’ where youth from selected districts across the country were surveyed on the basis of four domains — activity, ability, awareness and aspirations   Read More ...
Truly once in a blue moon on Jan 31
2018-01-17 04:48:41 On Jan 31, a rare astronomical event will occur, a coincidence of three special occurrences of the Moon - a lunar eclipse, a blue moon and a supermoon. The last time the planets aligned this way was almost 152 years ago, in 1866, a spokesman for the Science Centre Singapore told The Straits Times on Tuesday. A lunar eclipse occurs when the Moon moves into the Earth's shadow   Read More ...
Albay declares state of calamity under threat of Mayon eruption
2018-01-16 16:15:39 Published: 4:57 p.m., Jan. 16, 2018 | Updated: 11:07 p.m., Jan. 16, 2018. LEGAZPI CITY — For several days now, most residents of Albay province have their eyes fixed at the glowing crater of Mount Mayon as it continues to spew ash, smoke and lava. But the volcano’s “fireworks” have not only attracted the attention of locals. “Day tourists” have been coming to this capital to watch Mayon up close   Read More ...
Delhi-Fukuoka friendship key to combat air pollution: Arvind Kejriwal
2018-01-16 16:09:29 The Delhi government and Fukuoka Prefectural Government (FPG) signed a Friendship Agreement on Tuesday in Delhi with Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal noting that it allow the capital to “harness” potential in core areas, especially “environment and air pollution” – a “major issue of concern”. The agreement, wherein the core areas are environment, air pollution, culture, tourism & heritage, education and youth exchange was signed by Kejriwal and Fukuoka Governor Hiroshi Ogawa   Read More ...
Watch the rare coincidence of 3 moons, last seen in 1866, on Jan 31
2018-01-16 09:45:18 SINGAPORE - On Jan 31, a rare astronomical event will occur: A coincidence of three moons - a lunar eclipse, a blue moon and a supermoon. The last time the planets aligned this way was almost 152 years ago in 1866, a spokesman for the Science Centre Singapore told The Straits Times on Tuesday (Jan 16). A lunar eclipse occurs when the moon enters the earth's shadow   Read More ...
Ensure slopes are well maintained to prevent damage during intense weather: BCA
2018-01-16 08:45:26 SINGAPORE - Property owners and management corporations should ensure that sloping areas at their buildings have reinforcements to prevent slips during heavy rain. The Building and Construction Authority (BCA, which issued the advice on Tuesday (Jan 16), also noted that a choked drain or cracks on slope protection structures like earth-retaining walls can be tell-tale signs of "safety-risk conditions". If these signs are evident, owners or management corporations should "immediately engage a professional engineer to carry out inspections, assess the condition of their slopes and slope-protection structures, and recommend appropriate rectification works", said a BCA spokesman   Read More ...
WATCH: Thousands flee rumbling Mayon Volcano
2018-01-16 06:24:50 ALBAY, Philippines — Thousands living near Mayon Volcano were ordered evacuated after the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology warned that hazardous eruption is possible within days. Lava was slowly flowing out of the Mayon Volcano's crater along with a spectacular 1,000-metre (3,280-foot) ash plume rising into the sky, Philvolcs said. More than 20,000 people have been ordered to leave a seven-kilometre (four-mile) danger zone around the crater due to risk of rock falls, landslides and sudden explosions, as well as dome collapse that could generate hazardous volcanic mudflows know as lahar   Read More ...
NDRRMC reiterates warning as Mayon Volcano continues to spew lava
2018-01-16 06:19:48 MANILA, Philippines — Authorities on Tuesday reminded residents and the public to heed warnings from the local government authorities not to return to their residence within the extended permanent danger zone as Mayon Volcano continues to spew lava. Mina Marasigan, National Disaster Risk and Reduction Management Council spokesperson, said that a total of 5,318 families or 21,823 persons were forced to leave their residences as of Monday night due to a "lava fountain" from Mayon Volcano   Read More ...
Japan-US nuclear energy pact set to renew automatically in July 2018
2018-01-16 05:45:56 A nuclear energy cooperation agreement between Japan and the U.S. will renew automatically in July 2018, it is expected to be confirmed on Jan. 16. The existing accord, officially called the Agreement for Cooperation Between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of Japan Concerning Peaceful Uses of Nuclear Energy, recognizes Japan's extraction of plutonium from spent nuclear fuel and use of mixed oxide (MOX) fuel as part of its "nuclear fuel cycle   Read More ...
No classes in Tacloban due to rain
2018-01-16 00:22:48 Tacloban City announced the suspension of classes on Tuesday at all levels in both public and private schools, due to scattered rainshowers and thunderstorms. In an advisory late evening of Monday, the city government said the suspension was part of the “continuous precautionary measure of the weather disturbance for the safety of students.” The trough of a low pressure area (LPA) would prevail over the Visayas, according to a morning bulletin issued by the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa)   Read More ...
Philippines volcano begins spewing lava
2018-01-15 20:22:45 Alert level raised following steam eruptions and rockfalls on Mayon volcano Hundreds of families have been moved from neighborhoods at base of volcano (CNN)The Philippines' most active volcano has begun erupting again, after thousands of people on the main island of Luzon were earlier forced to evacuate. A photo of Mayon volcano published late Monday local time by the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) showed lava flows pouring down its side and a large plume of fiery smoke above the summit   Read More ...
Humans share fish genes that aid in repairing spinal cord
2018-01-15 14:24:25 Scientists have found that many of the genes that aid in the natural repair of injured spinal cord in the lamprey fish are also active in the repair of the peripheral nervous system in mammals, a finding that may eventually be harnessed to reverse spinal cord damage, even paralysis in humans. Lampreys are jawless, eel-like fish that shared a common ancestor with humans about 550 million years ago   Read More ...
Fears of major volcano eruption in the Philippines
2018-01-15 08:32:36 Philippine authorities have raised the alert level over Mount Mayon, an active volcano known for its deadly eruptions. The volcano began spewing ash and rocks over the weekend and on Monday morning magma could be seen in its crater. Hundreds of villagers living nearby have been evacuated from their homes.   Read More ...
NASA telescopes provide 3D journey through Orion Nebula
2018-01-15 08:12:13 Scientists, using data from NASA space telescopes, have created a 3D fly-through view of the Orion Nebula, allowing viewers to peek into the picturesque star-forming region. Viewers experience the nearby stellar nursery “up close and personal” as the new digital visualisation ferries them among newborn stars, glowing clouds heated by intense radiation, and tadpole-shaped gaseous envelopes surrounding protoplanetary disks. Using images and other data from NASA telescopes, researchers created a detailed multi-wavelength visualisation of the photogenic nebula   Read More ...
S. Korea to spend 86.6 bln won to advance climate technology in 2018
2018-01-15 08:05:48 SEOUL, Jan. 15 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's science ministry said Monday it will invest 86.6 billion won (US$81.5 million) this year to develop climate-related technologies to curb carbon gas emissions. The Ministry of Science and ICT said it designated two new sectors in 2018 to secure related technologies to better combat climate change. The 2018 budget increased by 9.6 percent from the 77 billion won earmarked for last year   Read More ...
Flash floods hit Rancha-Rancha Darat, Labuan
2018-01-15 06:01:41 LABUAN: A downpour early Monday caused flash floods in several parts of the duty-free-island here. The worst affected is Kg Rancha-Rancha Darat with at least two houses submerged, damaging furniture and electrical appliances. Villager Mohd Rezuan Abd Hassan, 37, said flash floods frequently occurred when there was continuous rain. "We have forwarded complaints to the authorities concerned but nothing has been done   Read More ...
Video of ice-like foam at Teluk Cempedak not related to cold weather (Video)
2018-01-15 06:01:17 THE Meteorological Department has said the video clip of white foam washed ashore at Pantai Teluk Cempedak in Kuantan was an old footage and had nothing to do with the recent cold weather. "This is a recycled clip. The phenomenon occurred early February last year in Pantai Balok," the department's spokesman said when contacted today. He was responding to a viral story that that had some members of the public perplexed by the 'ice-like' froth blown in Kuantan seas   Read More ...
Logging went ahead without EIA - Nation
2018-01-15 04:46:54 ALOR SETAR: The logging of over 500ha of forest reserve in Bukit Enggang, Sik, which has caused muddy run-offs into rivers in the surrounding area, has been carried out without an environmental impact assessment (EIA). Separate checks by both villagers and an environmental group with the state Department of Environment (DoE) confirmed that no EIA had been issued for the logging   Read More ...
LOOK: Mayon blows hot air, thick ash
2018-01-15 04:09:01 Mount Mayon emitted pyroclastic flow on Monday morning in the latest event on the volcano, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) reported. Phivolcs’ photos viewed from the Mayon Volcano Observatory on Lignon Hill at 9:41 a.m. show grayish to white ash or steam coming out of Mayon’s crater. Earlier, the agency raised Mayon’s alert status to level 3, which means it has an increased tendency to erupt   Read More ...
Bad weather prompts suspension of classes in Albay, Sorsogon
2018-01-15 04:08:42 LEGAZPI CITY – Classes in several areas in Albay and Sorsogon provinces were suspended on Monday due to heavy rain. In Albay, Sto. Domingo Mayor Herbie Aguas suspended classes in all levels due to threat of flooding and following the raising of the alert level over Mayon Volcano, which spewed ash after a steam-driven eruption on Saturday. Legazpi City Mayor Noel Rosal also suspended the afternoon classes in all levels on Monday as the Albay capital experienced heavy rain   Read More ...
Wildlife warden demands biodiversity mapping of Powai lake
2018-01-15 02:08:30 Worried over the fate of crocodiles living inside Powai lake, Honorary Wildlife Warden (Mumbai city) Sunish Kunju has written to the forest department as well as BMC asking for a census of the crocodile population living in the lake along with a detailed biodiversity mapping of the lake. Despite being a man-made lake, Powai lake happens to be the only one located in the middle of the city to have crocodiles living in it   Read More ...
Cold front, amihan bring clouds, scattered rain
2018-01-15 00:09:53 The tail-end of a cold front would bring cloudy skies with scattered rainshowers and thunderstorms over the Mimaropa region, Bicol region, the Visayas, and Mindanao, the weather bureau said in its Monday morning forecast. The residents of Sorsogon, Masbate, Romblon, Palawan, the Visayas, and Mindanao were advised to take extra precautions for possible flooding and landslides caused by moderate to heavy rain, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) said in its bulletin   Read More ...
NASA scientists spot farthest known galaxy in universe
2018-01-14 19:42:49 NASA scientists have spotted the farthest known galaxy in the universe, a primitive cluster of stars just 500 million years old. An intensive survey deep into the universe by NASA's Hubble and Spitzer space telescopes has yielded the image of the galaxy named SPT0615-JD, stretched and amplified by a phenomenon called gravitational lensing. Though a few other primitive galaxies have been seen at this early epoch, they have essentially all looked like red dots given their small size and tremendous distances   Read More ...
Azure Power commissions 100 MW project
2018-01-14 19:14:35 Azure Power has commissioned a 100 MW solar power plant in Telangana. Announcing this, a release from the independent solar power producer said the project was auctioned by NTPC. Azure will supply power to NTPC for the next 25 years at a tariff of ₹4.67 per kWh. The project, spread across 500 acres in Nagar Kurnool and Ranga Reddy districts, has been set up under the National Solar Mission Phase-II, Batch-II Tranche-I   Read More ...