1. PHILIPPINE VOLCANO SPEWS LAVA, ASH FOR 3RD DAY, 30,000 FLEE
TAGAYTAY, Philippines: The continuing restiveness of the Taal volcano after it rumbled to life Sunday indicates magma may still be rising to the crater.
The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology raised the alert level to 4, indicating a hazardous eruption is possible in hours to days. Level 5, the highest, means such an eruption is underway.
The government’s disaster-response agency counted more than 30,400 evacuees in Batangas and nearby Cavite provinces. And the number is expected to increase.
2. AUSTRALIA’S MASSIVE FIRES COULD BECOME ROUTINE
LONDON: Bushfires ravaging Australia have provided a foretaste of the kinds of conditions that could become normal unless the world moves rapidly to curb emissions of the greenhouse gases driving global warming.
Scientists have warned as the review found that climate change had led to an increase in the frequency and severity of what scientists call “fire weather” – periods with a high fire risk due to some combination of hotter temperatures, low humidity, low rainfall and strong winds.
If nothing is done to stop rising emissions, the World Meteorological Organization says the global temperature increase could hit 3-5 C this century, more than three times limits agreed in the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement.
3. TIMING OF THREAT FROM SOLEIMANI ‘DOESN’T REALLY MATTER’ – TRUMP
WASHINGTON: President Donald Trump fueled controversy on Monday over his decision to kill Iranian commander Qassem Soleimani by saying “it doesn’t really matter” whether Soleimani posed an imminent threat to the United States.
Democrats, who are trying to pass legislation to rein in Trump’s ability to wage war on Iran without lawmakers’ approval, have sharply disagreed.
Since confirming Soleimani was killed by a U.S. air strike in Baghdad, administration officials have said they acted because of an imminent risk of attacks on American diplomats and service members in Iraq and throughout the region. U.S. lawmakers, including some Republicans as well as Democrats, have said the administration however has failed to provide evidence that an attack was imminent.