The US and European allies warn that Russia could be planning a push into Ukraine. In response, France and the UK have vowed to help Ukraine defend itself. Some in the UK’s parliamentary defense committee fear that Russia could be setting its sights on more than just Ukraine—Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania could also be at risk.
An ocean observatory off the coast of Norway used for marine science (but one that also happens to detect submarine traffic) had its undersea cables cut and removed. The Institute of Marine Research is looking to have the cables repaired. Interference with its detection capabilities has been happening since April. Russia is suspected of the sabotage.
Russia used a weapon against one of its own satellites over the weekend, and debris from that strike is imperiling the ISS and the astronauts and cosmonauts on board. The ISS passes through the debris field every 93 minutes. The debris includes 14 trackable items but thousands of smaller pieces that will endanger low-earth orbit assets for years or even decades to come. Folks around the world are not too happy about it:
The #Russia #ASAT test demonstrated a disregard for the security, safety, stability & long-term sustainability of the space domain for all nations. #Space activities underpin our way of life & this kind of behavior is simply irresponsible.
— U.S. Space Command (@US_SpaceCom) November 15, 2021
A report from the Office of the DNI makes it clear that the impacts of climate change will be harrowing for the globe and that Americans will not be spared from the effects. Wars for resources, waves of climate migrants, droughts, and increasingly severe weather events are on the horizon. When agencies warn of climate refugees, that encompasses up to 1/3 of the global population:
"In late October, 18 US intelligence agencies forecast that Americans will face “massive” impacts and “wrenching” adjustments because of climate change over the next two decades," writes @jessimckenzi. https://t.co/4eLNACyQO3 pic.twitter.com/J3rFJGaeZk
— Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists (@BulletinAtomic) November 12, 2021
British Columbia has had multiple 100-year flooding events all at once, causing evacuations and the shutdown of a pipeline:
Here's British Columbia's River Forecast Centre, showing the map of current streamflow conditions.
The purple dots indicate a flow that has exceeded a 1 in 100 year event.
There are far too many purple dots at the moment. pic.twitter.com/pJUfVRfEJG
— Justin McElroy (@j_mcelroy) November 15, 2021
Bird flu is spreading in Asia and Europe, and hundreds of thousands in various flocks have been culled. China has seen a few dozen infections hop to people as well. Multiple countries are on alert and implementing measures to help contain the H5N6 and H5N8 strains.
We can all scratch “Stinging Scorpion Storm” off our 2021 bingo card:
Heavy rain and flooding in southern Egypt has forced scorpions out of their hiding places, sending more than 500 people to hospitals with scorpion stings, according to state-run media.
— CBC News Alerts (@CBCAlerts) November 14, 2021
Biden signed the $1 trillion Infrastructure bill into law today. Here’s a state-by-state estimate of the monies each state will get towards transportation improvements, internet access, climate change mitigation, and clean water access. That fact sheet was released in August, and some allocations may have been changed prior to passage. It’s a massive bill. A decent breakdown of what it entails can be found here. If updated fact sheets come out, I’ll post them.
In news of the novel and cool, Dubai zaps its clouds with electricity from drones, and it causes rainfall! California and those states suffering from drought ought to pay attention to this as it’s a method of cloud-seeding that is chemical-free and seemingly effective.
A man was rescued from a sinking plane in waters off Florida by US Customs and Border Patrol agents. Trained personnel were able to get him to safety quickly.
The world has over 254.5 million COVID cases. The world has gained 3.5 million cases in the last week. Cases are rising globally and in the US. There have been over 5.1 million deaths in total. The US has a cumulative 48 million cases. The US gained about 600,000 cases in the last seven days. Over 784,000 Americans have died during the pandemic—about 9,000 in the last week. The US gained over 50,000 new cases on Sunday, and over 44,000 by late afternoon Monday. The US, Russia, UK, and Germany have had the largest case gains over the last week.
Austria has moved forward with a COVID lockdown on unvaccinated people aged 12 and over:
Austria plans to approve lockdown for the unvaccinated on Sunday https://t.co/rjIeomN5QU
— Crawford Kilian (@Crof) November 12, 2021
California has expanded COVID booster access to all adults who want one, not just the categories originally recommended by the CDC. If six months have passed since the second dose of an mRNA vaccine, or if two months have passed since the first dose of the J&J vaccine, adults in California may request a booster dose. Colorado and New Mexico have followed suit.
The UK is also expanding access to boosters:
— Eric Topol (@EricTopol) November 15, 2021
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit halted Biden’s vaccine mandate for companies with more than 100 employees earlier this month and reaffirmed its stance last week. The White House and the US Chamber of Commerce, however, say that businesses can continue with the mandate until the mandate is definitively shut down–calling the Fifth Circuit’s actions a “preliminary review.” The case will likely go to the Supreme Court.
Multiple snow leopards at a Nebraska zoo have died from COVID:
— Laurie Garrett (@Laurie_Garrett) November 14, 2021