Posted by edro on February 23, 2010
Growing Disasters, Shrinking World
Drought and Deluge Wreaking Havoc Globally
Philippines farmlands are drying up in the intense heat; there’s no rain in sight. The El Niño has affected about 160,000 hectares (ha) of farmland in the country, destroying more than 200,000 MT of crops including palay, rice and corn.
“Below normal rainfall is threatening some 42,000 hectares of rice paddies in the region, with 11,000 already beyond recovery and another 21,250 damaged. The dry spell has also affected corn crops in other areas.” FEWW said.
To ensure food security, for now at any rate, the Philippines National Economic and Development Authority (Neda) is buying 2.65 million MT of rice, mostly from Vietnam and Thailand.
Persistent Drought in eastern and northeastern Syria regions has driven about 300,000 families to urban areas in search of work, a worrying massive population displacements in Middle East in recent history. Some villages have lost about half of their population to overcrowding cities. More than 80 percent of livestock on small and medium-sized farms have died as a result of a 75-percent rise in the cost of animal feed.
A dense plume of dust [sand] swept from Syria into Iraq on February 22, 2010. This photo-like image of the dust storm [sand storm] was captured by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite in the early afternoon (12:30 p.m. in Syria, 1:30 in Iraq). Distinct plumes rise from many point sources in the Syrian desert. Within a few kilometers, the plumes blend into a dense cloud that completely obscures eastern Syria and western Iraq. The veil of dust is thick enough that the ground beneath is not visible, which means that people on the ground are probably getting little light from the Sun. Image Credit: NASA/MODIS/Jeff Schmaltz: Caption: Holli Riebeek.
In China’s southwestern provinces of Yunnan and Guizhou, up to 4 million hectares of crops have been damaged by severe drought. Water shortages are affecting about 6 million people and 3.6 million livestock. Several of China’s northern provinces are also affected by the dry spell, with major signs of stress emerging in the farmlands after a 40-day drought.
Island of Madeira (Portuguese Territory)
At least 42 people were killed and 120 others injured when torrential rains ledt to massive mudslides on the Atlantic resort island of Madeira flooding the popular holiday destination and destroying about 240 homes and damaging many more. Roads and other public infrastructure were also damaged by the storm.
Heavy rains which triggered extensive flooding in the country’s southwest province cut off access to the city of Jerez, prompting the authorities to shut down the airport.
In Tenerife, Canary Islands (Spanish Territories), strong winds and violent downpour led to deluge across the island and left at leat ten thousand homes without electricity, according to the officials.
Posted in china, Collapse, drought and deluge, Philippines, Syria | Tagged: 2010 Disasters, collapsing cities, dynamics of collapse, Environment Disaster, Environmental Catastrophe, Extreme Rain Events, floods, Iraq, landslides, Mechanisms of Collapse, storms | 4 Comments »
Posted by edro on October 13, 2009
Dallas: The First Major US City to Collapse?
Air, water and soil contamination may cause collapse of population centers
For more information see: The First Wave of World’s Collapsing Cities
- Estimated population: 1.3 million
- State ranking: Third largest city in Texas [After Houston and San Antonio]
- National ranking: Main city and economic hub of the 12-county metropolitan area [Dallas–Fort Worth–Arlington] with a population of 6,500,000
- Population Growth: Fourth largest and number one fastest-growing metropolitan area in the United States in2008.
Contaminants in air around Texas gas town: study
By Ed Stoddard
DALLAS (Reuters) – High concentrations of harmful compounds have been found in the air in a north Texas town that is in the heart of the region’s gas industry, according to a report released this month by an environmental consultancy.
The study by Wolf Eagle Environmental Engineers and Consultants found high concentrations of carcinogenic and neurotoxin compounds in the atmosphere at seven locations around the rural town of DISH, which is about 50 miles northwest of Dallas.
Carcinogens are linked to cancers while neurotoxins are toxins that act on nerve cells.
The report said the levels of several of the substances exceeded those that the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) uses as benchmarks or triggers that could prompt it to investigate or take action.
The TCEQ is conducting its own studies in the area.
DISH is on the Barnett Shale, a large geological formation in north Texas that contains vast amounts of natural gas. In and around the town are pipelines, wells and several compressor stations owned by a number of energy companies including Chesapeake, Atmos and Crosstex.
The town hired the consultancy to do the study.
“The chemicals and concentrations that we found are consistent with other facilities that we have tested in and around the Barnett Shale. Many of these chemicals are related to the scenting process of natural gas because natural gas has no odor,” said Alisa Rich, president of Wolf Eagle.
“I’m extremely confident that this is linked to the gas industry,” she told Reuters in an interview. The data was collected over a 24-hour period in August.
She said the compressor stations were a special cause for concern because of the volumes of gas pumped through them.
“Atmos Energy does not believe that its operations in the DISH area make any significant contribution to the emissions of the chemicals listed in the Wolf Eagle Engineering study,” Atmos said in response to an e-mail query from Reuters.
“Atmos Energy is aware that the TCEQ is planning additional emissions testing in this area in the near future and will cooperate fully with those efforts,” it said.
Chesapeake and Crosstex declined to comment.
DISH’s Mayor Calvin Tillman told Reuters he would like to see the compressor stations shut down “until we can know with confidence that they are not emitting these toxins.”
The report is the latest to link environmental and health hazards with America’s booming gas industry.
In August, U.S. government scientists announced that they had found for the first time found chemical contaminants in drinking water wells near natural gas drilling operations, fueling concern that a gas-extraction technique is endangering the health of people who live close to drilling rigs.
(Editing by Dan Whitcomb and Christian Wiessner)
Posted in Atmos Energy, Barnett Shale, chemical contaminants, Chesapeake, collapse mechanisms, Crosstex, drinking water, energy, energy dinosaurs, natural gas, nerve cells | Tagged: Carcinogens, collapsing cities, Dallas, DISH, dynamics of collapse, First Wave of Collapsing Cities, Nemesis, neurotoxins, TCEQ | Leave a Comment »
Posted by edro on November 17, 2008
Hong Kong: Facing an Increasingly Uncertain Future
Hong Kong may be among the world’s first Megapolises to experience a total collapse
The night skyline of Hong Kong, Victoria Harbour and Kowloon, as seen from Victoria Peak, the tallest mountain on Hong Kong Island. With a population of more than 7 million, HK is one of the most densely populated areas in the world. Author: Diliff. Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.
Posted in energy, environment, future, lifestyle, pollution | Tagged: dynamics of collapse, First Wave of Collapse, Hong Kong, large scale collapse, Megapolis | Leave a Comment »