Tuesday, 19 January 2010

How Earth Made Us

New Iain Stewart series starts this evening on BBC2, 9.00pm.

Professor Iain Stewart tells the epic story of how geology, geography and climate have influenced mankind.

Wednesday, 13 January 2010

Earthquake in Haiti

Awful situation in Haiti at the moment as a result of a M7 earthquake - the worst in the area for 200 years - that struck the capital, Port-au-Prince, last night.

Haiti is one of the world's poorest countries, with many people living in poorly constructed slum dwellings. The death toll is already thought to be in the thousands, and the Red Cross estimate that up to three million people have been affected. The lack of infrastructure is a major issue, and the absence of ambulances, fire engines and emergency rescue teams is noticeable in the images that are appearing on the various news websites.

Emergency response teams from various countries including the UK, together with aid agencies such as Oxfam and ActionAid are preparing to fly out to Haiti, and the UN have released £6 million from their emergency relief fund to help the victims of the earthquake.

Sky News

Sunday, 10 January 2010

Montserrat "explosion"

Just noticed that the Montserrat Volcanic Observatory have added some new photos to their Flickr page, so had a look at their website to find that the alert level has been upped to 4 (5 being the highest) and that there was an explosion which caused a large pyroclastic flow on Friday.

Some excellent images and a range of videos (including some thermal ones) of pyroclastic flows on the MVO website...

Friday, 8 January 2010

What happened to global warming?

Lots of people have been asking in the past few days why it is so cold when people keep banging on about global warming... A nice little video clip here from the BBC, which emphasises the difference between weather and climate.

Thursday, 7 January 2010


Fantastic satellite image of Britain this morning from Nasa's MODIS Rapid Response Gallery...

And a nice interactive from the Guardian looking at the causes of the weather and summarising the impacts... (Thanks Alan Parkinson!)

What's it like where you are?

And don't forget to send your snow photos in...

Tuesday, 5 January 2010


Lots that I could say about the snow which seems to be everywhere at the moment (although not so much here as other parts of the country by the sounds of things...).

Check out the Met Office website here - with severe weather warnings covering pretty much the whole country today and tomorrow...

If you've been out and about, or watched/listened to news or traffic reports, you'll already know plenty about the effects that this "cold snap" is having. I was surprised to hear that Meadowhall was closing early:
If you want to know more about why the snow is happening, check out the pressure charts on the Met Office site - there is a big area of high pressure sitting over Greenland, and low pressure over the Atlantic, causing very very cold Arctic air to keep heading in our direction. An explanation here from the BBC about what snow is and how it forms...

Snow Photo Competition

There will be a small prize for the SHS person who takes the best snow photo and emails it to me by 3.20pm on Monday... To send your pictures, log into your school emails, and then type vel into the address bar.