Tag Archives: World
SUPERSTORM IS THE NEW TSUNAMI
A group of more than 100 scientists and experts say in a new report that California faces the risk of a massive “superstorm” that could flood a quarter of the state’s homes and cause $300 billion to $400 billion in damage. Researchers point out that the potential scale of destruction in this storm scenario is four or five times the amount of damage that could be wrought by a major earthquake.
It sounds like the plot of an apocalyptic action movie, but scientists with the U.S. Geological Survey warned federal and state emergency officials that California’s geological history shows such “superstorms” have happened in the past, and should be added to the long list of natural disasters to worry about in the Golden State.
The threat of a cataclysmic California storm has been dormant for the past 150 years. Geological Survey director Marcia K. McNutt told the New York Times that a 300-mile stretch of the Central Valley was inundated from 1861-62. The floods were so bad that the state capital had to be moved to San Francisco, and Governor Leland Stanford had to take a rowboat to his own inauguration, the report notes. Even larger storms happened in past centuries, over the dates 212, 440, 603, 1029, 1418, and 1605, according to geological evidence.
The risk is gathering momentum now, scientists say, due to rising temperatures in the atmosphere, which has generally made weather patterns more volatile.
The scientists built a model that showed a storm could last for more than 40 days and dump 10 feet of water on the state. The storm would be goaded on by an “atmospheric river” that would move water “at the same rate as 50 Mississippis discharging water into the Gulf of Mexico,” according to the AP. Winds could reach 125 miles per hour, and landslides could compound the damage, the report notes.
Such a superstorm is hypothetical but not improbable, climate researchers warn. “We think this event happens once every 100 or 200 years or so, which puts it in the same category as our big San Andreas earthquakes,” Geological Survey scientist Lucy Jones said in a press release.
Federal and state emergency management officials convened a conference about emergency preparations for possible superstorms last week.
Uighur are being treated as a second class citizen and received the same harassment as Tibetian.
This is a systematic ethnic cleansing campaign by the China government to wipe out or at least to outnumbered the Uighur by exporting Han ethnic to their land, Xinjiang. For thousand of years, the world knew that Xinjiang that lies in the Turkistan was the land and place of the Uighur and any attempt to break the majority will definately end with bloody campaign.
The process of bringing other ethnic to mix up with local ethnic is a tactic of multiple regime in the world to ensure continuous support and to stop nationalism from getting support. Some succeed but some failed.
Another issue, the uprising of the Uighurs had been blanket by the government of China as the movement of terrorist or Islamic resistance. By claiming that, they hope the world and the western media especially will not look into the matter deeper. It is a cheap and dirty tactics to surpress its own citizen.
The absence of international media in Xinjiang will be the golden opportunity for the government to launch the same scale or even worst ethnic cleansing than Bosnian war. I have doubt that the police and military will protect the Uighurs, China record on handling crisis and uprising is not good at all.
China is using various NGOs and pro-China media to cover up the bloody riot in Urumqi as a terrorist plot to the topple the legitimate government. They critisize western medias as being bias in reporting and supporting terrorism. This propaganda game is well orchestrated and being monitored to ensure the world not to get the real story happenned on the ground.
I demand that the government of China to stop torturing and opressing Uighur Muslim and to stop transporting immigrant Han to the Xinjiang Land immediately.
Shahrul Peshawar, Alor Setar
“More than ever we need to work together to use it wisely,” Mr. Ban said in a message to mark World Water Day, observed annually on 22 March.
“While the world’s growing population is consuming more freshwater, climate change is making less water available in many regions as glaciers recede, rainfall becomes less predictable, and floods and droughts become more extreme. Managing water carefully and balancing the varied needs for it is vital,” he stated.
Much of the planet’s water, above or below ground, is shared. Forty per cent of the world’s people live in 1 of 263 basins that are shared by two or more countries. Concern over the possibility of violent disputes features regularly in discussions about sharing limited water resources.
“But while the potential exists for water to act as a catalyst for conflict between States and communities, precedent suggests that the opposite is actually what happens,” he noted. “Cooperation, not conflict, is the most common response by people facing competing demands.”
Under the theme “Shared Waters, Shared Opportunities,” this year’s Day highlights how transboundary water resources can act as a unifying force.
The Secretary-General noted that worldwide, there are at least 300 international water agreements, often among parties that are otherwise at odds. These agreements demonstrate the potential of shared water resources to foster trust and promote peace.
“I urge Governments, civil society, the private sector and all stakeholders to recognize that our collective future depends on how we manage our precious and finite water resources,” he said.
The head of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) has used his World Water Day message to stress that investing in the world’s freshwaters could be one of the keys to aiding global economic recovery.
“The global water market for supply, sanitation and water efficiency is worth over $250 billion and is likely to grow to nearly $660 billion by 2020,” Executive Director Achim Steiner noted. “This represents new businesses and new employment prospects for developed and developing economies.
“Meanwhile, an investment of $15 billion a year towards meeting the Millennium Development Goal of halving by 2015 the number of people without sustainable access to safe water and basic sanitation could generate global economic benefits worth $38 billion annually,” he added.
Also marking the Day, the Independent Expert on the issue of human rights obligations related to access to safe drinking water and sanitation voiced her concern about access to water and sanitation during emergencies.
“The chaos and insecurity caused by war and natural disasters frequently block access to water and sanitation, with devastating results,” said Catarina de Albuquerque.
“Economic, social and cultural rights, including those related to water and sanitation, are always applicable, and States may not excuse themselves from respecting them during times of emergency,” she added.
Today, 20 June is World Refugee Day, and across the globe, in the 116 countries where UNHCR works, staff, refugees and humanitarian partners are involved in a huge range of activities to mark the occasion including experiencing refugee life in a UNHCR tent – that’s happening right outside on the Place des Nations here in Geneva from 9am – 4pm – bridge lighting, sports events, concerts, photo exhibitions and film festivals.
Refugees show incredible courage and perseverance and this year’s overall theme of ‘Protection’ is a reflection of the need and right to protection that refugees deserve.
To show his solidarity with the millions of refugees and displaced, and pay tribute to all those humanitarians who help them, High Commissioner António Guterres is on a three-day mission in Kenya seeing first hand the situation displaced Kenyans and of Somali refugees uprooted from their war-ravaged country. He described Somalia as one of the world’s worst humanitarian crises and urged the international community to make peace in Somalia a priority. He acknowledged that UNHCR had to do more to help those uprooted by the 17-year conflict and has had meetings with the UN country team on the issue today. According to UNHCR’s global statistics for 2007, released Tuesday, Somalis were the fifth largest group of refugees and sixth largest group of internally displaced people under UNHCR’s care worldwide. The new statistics showed globally there were 11.4 million refugees outside their countries and 26 million others displaced internally by conflict or persecution at the end of 2007.
On Thursday, the eve of World Refugee Day, the High Commissioner visited Kenyans in the Rift Valley displaced by post-election violence. While more than 195,000 displaced Kenyans had returned home, according to Kenyan officials, there were still 43,000 in camps around in the country. In Naivasha, where there are two camps, Mr Guterres told the displaced that a camp should only be a short-term solution and his biggest wish is that they should be able to return home soon in safety and dignity.
And, today, on the final leg of his visit, he is in Nairobi to join in World Refugee Day celebrations.
For all those interested in further details about how World Refugee Day is being celebrated around the world go to UNHCR’s website http://www.unhcr.org