EDM Wednesday Briefing: Mississippi Closed, Levee Overtopped, Guinea Free from Ebola
EDM Wednesday Briefing December 30, 2015: Mississippi Closed, Levee Overtopped, Guinea Free from Ebola, Infrared Saves Eight Miners, NASA says El Niño as Strong as 1998
Mississippi Closed Near St. Louis, Levee Overtopped, Guinea Free from Ebola, Infrared Saves Eight Miners, NASA Says El Niño as Strong as 1998
In the Nation
- The Mississippi River near St. Louis, Missouri is closed to vessel traffic due to increasingly hazardous conditions by rising floodwaters from the recent storms that are being blamed on a strong El Niño. Reports indicate that 13 people have died in relation to the flooding in Missouri alone.
- A levee has been overtopped in West Alton, Missouri as rivers continue to rise from runoff from the recent storms. Currently, more than 17 million people are under a flood warning threat across the nation. 19 levees are being carefully monitored for flooding, as homes in Illinois and Missouri wait to see if they will be affected.
- A preliminary report published by the National Law Officers Memorial Fund indicates that while there was four-percent increase in officer deaths at all levels - federal, state, territorial, local - fewer died due to gunfire in 2015 than in 2014. The number fell from 49 in 2014 to 42 so far in 2015, a decrease of 14 percent.
- Clean energy tax credits approved by Congress just prior to the holidays will provide a boost to the solar and wind renewable energy industry and drive costs down even further one report suggests. The report also indicates that wind power is only five-percent of power generation in the United States, with solar power ranking even lower. Industry leaders believe this will help increase renewable energy across the country and make clean energy more appealing and affordable.
- NASA is saying that the current El Niño could be as strong as the one in 1998, which was the strongest one ever recorded. The weather phenomena has produced unseasonable warm temperatures across the nation and torrential rains have caused flooding across the globe. Current data indicates El Niño shows no signs of weakening.
Across the World
- According to The World Health Organization, Guinea is free from Ebola. The virus killed more than 2,500 people and lasted two years, but officials warn the disease could re-emerge. Since Liberia has seen the virus come back twice, reports indicate that officials will maintain vigilance to prevent another outbreak.
- Reports indicate that a coalition led by the United States has killed the ISIS leader, Abdelhamid Abaaoud, that was linked to the Paris Attacks ringleader. Col. Steve Warren said that the leader was also "actively planning additional attacks against the West" and is one of 10 ISIS leaders killed during the strikes.
- Turkish police have detained two individuals during the raid of a house in Ankara that are suspected Islamic State militants. The officers found suicide vests they believe were going to be detonated at two separate locations during a New Year's Eve celebration in Ankara.
- China used infrared cameras to locate eight people trapped in a gypsum mine for five days. There are still nine people missing, but seven other were already rescued and the latest survivors indicate that some underground passages are still open.