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Noah Berger / AFP / Getty Images

Heartbreaking & Devastating Camp Fire Was World's Costliest Catastrophe of 2018

In terms of natural disasters, 2018 was a really bad year. Communities in the United States and around the world were devastated by record-breaking wildfires, hurricanes, earthquakes, floods and other catastrophes.

Lamentably, these weather and geophysical events caused 10,400 human deaths and $160 billion in estimated damages last year, reinsurance company Munich Re said on Tuesday.

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Fracking
A protester outside the site where fracking restarted in the UK in October. OLI SCARFF / AFP / Getty Images

UK Fracking Paused Again After Largest Quake Yet

It would appear that the resurgence of fracking in the UK is on very shaky ground. A company called Cuadrilla restarted the controversial technique at a site in Lancashire, in Northwest England, just two months ago after a seven year hiatus. But it spent a month of that time doing tests with smaller volumes of water after a series of small earthquakes in October, The Guardian reported.

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Red dots represent earthquakes near Anchorage in the last 24 hours as of Dec. 3. Yellow dots represent quakes in the last two weeks. The size of the dots represent the magnitude. Alaska Earthquake Center

Nearly 1,400 Aftershocks Rattle Alaska After 7.0 Earthquake

Roughly 1,400 aftershocks have followed after Friday's monster 7.0 magnitude earthquake struck near Anchorage, Alaska, Anchorage Daily News reported.

The aftershocks all surrounded the original temblor that was centered about 7 miles north of Alaska's largest city.

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Energy
Police officers stand near anti-fracking protesters attempting to stop a tanker lorry leaving the Preston New Road drill site where energy firm Cuadrilla Resources have recommenced fracking operations to extract shale gas, on Oct. 25. Christopher Furlong / Getty Images

First ‘Red’ Level Tremor at UK Fracking Site Put Legal Pause on Operations

The return of fracking to the UK is off to a truly shaky start.

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Fracking
A cow stands near the fracking site where tremors prompted Cuadrilla to put work on hold. Stewart Kirby / SOPA Images / LightRocket via Getty Images

Tremors Interrupt First UK Fracking Attempt in 7 Years

A little over a week after fracking restarted in the UK, it's been paused again due to seismic activity, The Guardian Reported.

Cuadrilla Resources, the company fracking two wells at the Preston New Road site in Lancashire in northwest England, confirmed Tuesday they had paused operations for the day after a tremor registered a magnitude of 0.4. Tuesday's tremor was only the largest of six that have been detected near the site since Cuadrilla began fracking again, The British Geological Survey said.

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Energy
Greenpeace fracking protest in London's Parliament Square. DAVID HOLT / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

5 Earthquakes Recorded in England Just Days After Fracking Restarts

A string of small earthquakes were reported the town of Blackpool just days after fracking operations restarted in England after a seven year hiatus, raising concerns that the controversial drilling process could eventually trigger bigger temblors.

The British Geological Survey (BGS) detected five quakes since Thursday near the contentious Preston New Road site operated by UK shale gas firm Cuadrilla Resources.

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Science
The Ross Ice Shelf at the Bay of Whales. Michael Van Woert, NOAA

Scientists Study Ice Shelf by Listening to Its Changing Sounds

By Marlene Cimons

Researchers monitoring vibrations from Antarctica's Ross Ice Shelf were flabbergasted not long ago to hear something unexpected—the ice was "singing" to them. "We were stunned by a rich variety of time-varying tones that make up this newly described sort of signal," said Rick Aster, professor of geosciences at Colorado State University, one of the scientists involved in the study.

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5.9 Magnitude Earthquake Strikes Disaster-Plagued Haiti

Northern Haiti is reeling after a 5.9 magnitude earthquake on Saturday and a 5.2 magnitude aftershock on Sunday.

"I urge the population to keep calm," Haitian President Jovenel Moïse tweeted Saturday. "The [disaster] risk management system and the regional branches of the Civil Protection are on standby to assist the inhabitants of the affected areas."

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1,400 Dead, 70,000 Homeless After Earthquake and Tsunami in Indonesia

Indonesia's devastating earthquake-tsunami combo last week has left 70,000 people homeless in the city of Palu, CBS News reported Thursday.

The death toll has climbed to more than 1,420 people since Friday, when the 7.5 magnitude earthquake and the 18-foot tsunami it triggered struck the island of Sulawesi.

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