Tuesday, July 31, 2007

A disaster affecting 200 million people doesn't make news

  • millions of hectares of farmland submerged
  • more than 200 million people affected
  • over 500 killed
  • hundreds of thousands of homes damaged or destroyed
  • more flash floods, downpours and landslides expected in the coming days

Not the UK or the US, but China. If it were the US or UK it would be all over the media.

These are the worst floods in ten years in China where every year at least 5000 people die in floods.

Five thousand years ago, soil depletion and flooding due to deforestation led to starvation and disaster in China (source: Clive Ponting's Green History of the World). They are still repeating the same errors.

Some say only a huge disaster will wake us up and force us to do something abut global warming and unsustainable land management. 200 million affected is clearly not a sufficient scale.

I am not confident that those who typically lead human communities are able to make long-term and rational decisions, while the majority of the rest of us quite naturally want to have our cake and eat it, if it's available.

1 comment:

alvinwriter said...

I think these kind of news just don't make it through the proper channels to make it available for a larger number of readers. But I believe the Internet can help in giving the right information and news to people.

Here's something from TheNewsRoom about the disasters faced by China associated with global warming: http://www.thenewsroom.com/details/600275?c_id=wom-bc-ar

There's a lot more on global warming and the environment in TheNewsRoom. You can find out how it can be your partner in content by emailing jtowns@voxant.com. We'll be happy to hear from you!

- Alvin from TheScienceDesk at TheNewsRoom.com