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Our Daily Planet: Missouri Levee Explosion Video and a New Zealand Tornado

Each weekday morning, OurAmazingPlanet takes the pulse of the Earth, reporting on natural phenomena and exploration news from around the globe.

Levee Blasted: The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers blew up a levee along the Mississippi River last night. The plan will hopefully save the small town of Cairo, Ill., from the rising river. The explosion was caught on video.

Pricey Shark Fin Soup: Each shark that is killed for it's fin, the trademark ingredient in shark fin soup, is worth nearly $2 million in the wild, according to a new study.

New Zealand Tornado: Tornadoes are not just a North American menace. A tornado hit Aukland, New Zealand, yesterday, with winds of up to 125 mph (201 kph). The clockwise-rotating twister killed two people.

Gulf Shipwrecks: Divers plan to remove artifacts from four shipwrecks that they discovered in the Gulf of Mexico. The shipwrecks are believed to date to the 19th century. [Image Gallery: Shipwreck Alley's Sunken Treasures]

Previously on Our Daily Planet: Alabama's EF-5 Tornado and Missouri Flooding

Reach OurAmazingPlanet staff writer Brett Israel at Follow him on Twitter @btisrael.

Brett Israel was a staff writer for Live Science with a focus on environmental issues. He holds a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry and molecular biology from The University of Georgia, a master’s degree in journalism from New York University, and has studied doctorate-level biochemistry at Emory University.