Tracking Santa Here we go folks. The big man starts his journey. Have fun watching some of these and then bed early! I’ll try to put on as many as I can over the next 24hours but no promises. MERRY CHRISTMAS to all readers of Ayrshire Geography. Santa in summer here Aukland, New Zealand
Fuji, Japan Santa going 100 times faster than the bullet train! Hope he isn’t done for speeding before he gets to Scotland.
Drillers looking for geothermal energy in Hawaii have dug a well right into a magma chamber. The magma specialist said it was like "chilled pancake syrup". They were surprised how hot it was and how close to the surface. Did nobody tell them about Hawaii's volcanoes?!! Nice video here too from the BBC. Link here.
The BBC Box is now in Los Angeles It has now arrived in Los Angeles, from China, with a load of health and personal care products, beauty supplies and gardening supplies The journey from Sendai in Japan took 10 days. It now carries measuring tapes going to New Jersey by train. There is a video on this here http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/7764789.stm However because of the world’s money problems there is less demand for a lot of China’s products and the this means fewer ships are needed to transport lots of goods around the world. Will this affect the BBC box?
Contain yourself folks! The NORAD site again is tracking the famous red coated old guy and you can follow him yourself here. GO ON You know you want to!!!!!!! Here's a summary of last year's tracking to enetrtain you and give you ataster of what's to come.
Read this horrific tale here. Backs up what we did a while ago with Higher. "a man digs a hole when his wife is pregnant: if when the baby is born it is a boy the jubilant father plants a tree to celebrate. If it is a girl the infant is buried alive".
Completely "stolen" from Richard Allaway. Here is an outline of S2 tasks for next week -assuming classroom in a box is working! Road transport
Chooseoneof the modes of transport from above (Road, Water, Rail, Air) and produce a timeline (either using this site or on paper) to show major achievements in that area. For example: first flight, first passenger flight, first Transatlantic flight etc. Is it still used today?
Describe the impact that advances in an area of transport (Road, Water, Rail or Air) has had upon globalization. [10 Marks]
The Box is an ambitious and unique year-long project for BBC News to tell the story of international trade and globalisation by tracking a standard shipping container around the world.As we discussed in class we will be looking at where this container is going and the effect of this on trade patterns in the world. How does this affect us? See over the next few weeks. The journey started in September leaving Greenock with a load of whisky going to China! If you click on the picture below you can see a video of this.
The BBC has a series of pages on this topic but I think they are a little complex for S2 at the moment. The link is here if anyone wants a look. Fee free! Link here
Marks and Spencer has just opened its largest store in Asia, and the first in mainland China. Although most of the country cannot afford to shop at the store, there is no shortage of customers. The manager of Marks and Spencer in Shanghai said "Digestive biscuits are an exotic draw - at 30% off, Shanghainese shoppers have been grabbing them by the armful. "
The journey is almost read to continue its route from China to the USA with a ship load of clothes. Keep watching this site to track its progress.
Another link to Fair Trade and trade patterns. This Youtube video can't be embedded, so here is the link. Th farmers choos to grow illegal drugs rather than bananas - why? Who is to blame for this? What do you think can be done about it?
How would you cope if a magnitude 7.8 earthquake struck? Highly unlikely in Ayrshire, but very real for people living on or near the San Andreas Fault... which is why, on 13th November, more than 5 million people in Southern California will be taking part in The Great Southern Californian Shakeout. Have a look at this video which shows what could happen when "the big one" strikes, and remember I said in class that this could happen ANY time now. Look at the ShakeOut website here and you can test your earthquake preparedness by playing the Beat the Quake game.
Coalfinger plans to cover the world in coal-fired power stations and destroy the climate in Operation Browncloud. Watch this the animated Bond spoof with secret agent Gaverson Green fighting to stop the evil plans of Coalfinger. (voiced of Brian Blessed) A bit of silly nonsense although a little rude – sorry folks. Thanks to Richard Allaway for highlighting this Greenpeace movie. Enjoy!
Experts have said the eruption of the Lusi mud volcano in Indonesia was caused by drilling for oil and gas. Lusi erupted in May 2006 and continues to spew out boiling mud. For two years, the crater has been oozing mud - enough to fill 50 Olympic size swimming pools every day!!. It was triggered by a magnitude 6.3 earthquake 30,000 people had to be moved out of the area. The geologists voted overwhelmingly that drilling was the most likely cause but not everyone agreed. We are still learning about these matters. You might ask whether the cause is important or not. YES. If the drillers caused it then they are liable for compensating 10,000 families, amounting to 700 billion Indonesian Rupias (£47m). If the earthquake was responsible, then the Indonesian government will have the burden of supporting the victims. Indonesia is a poor country. However, despite the vote, the drilling firm denies that its activities were in any way responsible for the disaster.
How to stop a volcano erupting.
Watch this video to show what is going on in Indonesia. Do you think this is worth while or a waste of time and effort as well as money?
Is this disaster natural or man made? I was at a conference last Saturday in a very wet and windy Edinburgh and attended a talk by Dr Ian Stewart on exactly this matter. This is also what I have been talking about in class to S2 and saying that this is one of the reasons I love Geography. We, as humans, think we are so smart and then we cause these disasters and Mother Nature “puts us in our place”. These are awful events but it is interesting to see what will happen in the future when people are perhaps forced to live in more marginal and “difficult” environments. Does global warming mean more people will have to take calculated risks on where they live or do we not have a choice any more? Enough philosophising – I’ve got marking to do.
Regional war fear as 50,000 homeless in Congo in two days More than 250,000 people have been made homeless since the latest bout of fighting erupted. In total, aid groups say they are struggling to reach people fleeing fierce fighting between government and rebel forces. The Congolese government has refused to negotiate with the rebels. Aid workers were unable even to reach the camp, and reports were reaching Goma that its inhabitants had begun to run away. Hundreds of thousands fled Goma, the regional capital which sits on the border with Rwanda , and the surrounding countryside in a mass exodus last week. “People are just trying to stay safe. It’s muddy and wet and a lot of people are sick,” said one local aid worker. The refugees were in desperate need of help. A woman clutching her young children and looking for shelter said: “We are helpless, powerless. “We do not believe anyone will treat us well. I am too afraid to go home, but who will feed us here? We feel abandoned.” The Save the Children charity, which was forced to pull out of Goma after government troops went on the rampage last week, sent an emergency team back into the city yesterday. A priority is reuniting families split up in the chaos.
Read more about this terrible situation here and read the excellent BBC summary, as ever here. Watch the video. WARNING! It is disturbing – think about how YOU would feel in this situation.
In some ways this is a very old tale. Long before medical abortion became available, unwanted girls were killed after birth or not given enough food and medicine to survive. But modern technology has changed that. Ultrasound machines, which make it possible to determine the gender of a fetus, have spread from big city hospitals to small country clinics. Portable machines are taken to remote villages by motorcycle.
Each year when we do the Earth Forces section this seems to happen. This time it is Pakistan’s turn. Hardly surprising when you see the plate boundaries in this region. Large parts of south Asia are at risk because a tectonic plate, known as the Indian plate, is pushing north into the Eurasian plate. Remember we mentioned that India used to be found at the Southern part of Africa! Look at the other posts to find out about this. At least 170 people have been killed after a powerful earthquake hit south-west Pakistan, leaving thousands homeless. Baluchistan is Pakistan's largest region geographically but is sparsely populated. There were aftershocks throughout the day. Boulders came crashing down from the mountains. The people were really scared. The Pakistan meteorological department put the magnitude (strength) of today's quake at 6.5. The official death toll is around 170 but reports are still coming in from remote areas. Some homes were buried in a landslide triggered by the quakeThis is expected to rise. Several people were injured in the panic, with one person hurting his legs after jumping from a first floor window and three people wounded when people fired guns in the air after the quake, hospital officials said. Read more here and here and watch a video here.
Great article here in the Daily Mail showing toilets with the best views. Anyone got a loo overlooking Ailsa Craig or Arran? Take a pic and send it please – unoccupied preferably!! Thanks to Alan Parkinson on Living Geography for highlighting this one.
A couple of videos here highlighted by Richard Allaway. Great stuff for Higher, Int 2 and S grade. Will the return to Poland of all these immigrants be bad news for Britain? Who will fill all the jobs? Are there enough people here available to do the jobs vacated by the Poles? Will it be better for Britain with less pressure on the health service and schools? What about the lack of tax being paid now by the immigrants? Lots to consider in these two short films.
Good one here with lots of silly games t fill your time. Don’t know if they will help a lot but have a go if you have a spare 5 minutes. The glossary is useful though. Might be a good idea for S grade classes to add to your favourites to refer to later.
Malaria is the leading cause of death in children under five and the disease has far-reaching effects. Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation gives more to battle malaria. Donors hope the money will be enough to eradicate malaria by that time. The money includes £598m from the World Bank and £870m from the Global Fund to Fight Aids, Tuberculosis and Malaria. Malaria still kills more than a million people each year, according to the World Health Organization. Alongside the offers of money came reassurance from African leaders that efforts are working. The president of Rwanda, said malaria deaths have fallen by more than 60% in his country. However a vaccine is still to be found and they hope this will be developed soon with the help of this money. Read the rest of this BBC article here and watch the short video.
On the BBC tonight. This is “Geography in your face” Around 1m tonnes of fish are dumped back in the North Sea every year - much of it because catches exceed EU fishing quotas. EU rules and regulations mean that as much as half of the fish they work so hard to catch is thrown dead, back into the water. "Quotas" limit not the amount of fish that's being caught, but the amount that is landed. As a result, an astonishing amount of fish is being wasted because it is too big, or too small or the skipper is over quota for that particular species. The quota system was introduced by the EU to protect threatened fish supplies. But what no-one expected was that it would result in so much waste. Read more and watch a video of this terrible situation here. More great stuff from the BBC for Geography!