Red Dust from Desert Blankets Sydney

22 09 2009

The dust blanketing eastern parts of New South Wales has been carried by powerful winds that snatched up tons of topsoil from the drought-ravaged west of the state.

Dust storms swept over Sydney Wednesday morning, turning the city sky so red, some residents thought they’d left the blue planet.

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Residents of eastern Australia have had to battle these bizarre conditions, because strong winds from the dry interior swept up dust and brought it gusting into the city.

In other areas of southern Australia like Broken Hill — well inland in western New South Wales — the storms have been even more intense. Dust storms have occasionally blacked out the sky.

Stunning photos have been posted to this Flickr gallery.

Sources: Wired.com, news.bbc.co.uk

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Major Earthquake Hits Java

2 09 2009

A magnitude 7.0 earthquake caused dozens of buildings to  collapse in the city of Tasikmalaya, in Java, Indonesia,  and injuring a number of people, according to one report.

The quake, which occured at at 2:55 p.m, also damaged buildings in the university city of Bandung near the epicentre, but there were no reports of any deaths.

In the capital Jakarta hundreds of people streamed from offices into the streets, according to agency reports.

The US Geological Survey lowered its magnitude reading from 7.4 to 7.0 and local tsunami warnings were withdrawn.

Source: BBC and Bloomberg.com