Friday, September 02, 2005

Blame it on the rain...or not

Is it really all Katrina's fault, what happened in Louisiana and Mississippi? Or is it ours? The US news channels are all showcasing the destruction, the despair, the looting but I don't really see anything being said about what causes this foul weather and how the cities can take measures.

Surely it is too early for them to focus on that. But still, the questions beg to be asked. Am I the only one who's noticed that the world is getting a little agitated these last few years? I remember clearly being taught in school that we, the poor countries, were more susceptible to these natural disasters. Because, because, because. But this summer, countries in Europe I had never before heard of suffering from this, had flooding and landslides : Switzerland, people, was muddied up!!!

I saw a French panel of experts from all fields essentially saying that the temperature rise (1 degree/year) is at the root of this phenomenon since hot ocean waters cause hurricanes to begin with.

So I'll just go ahead and say it: the US, once they get over the shock, should reassess their environmental policies. They are notorious worldwide for refusing to sign the Kyoto accords on gas emissions and the hothouse effect. And they are one of the biggest polluters, being the biggest industrialized nation these days. If you only take care of the victims, you don't solve the problem, you perpetuate it.

All these images on TV bring me back to Gonaïves, last year. Some stories are so similar. People being surprised by the strength of the water, spouses being torn from their loved ones hands, house disappearing. If there are about 20 hurricanes forecast for this season, I'm worried about what is coming up. After Gonaïves, everybody in the Capital is a little anxious. We're the most populated city on this island, slums clog the canals, the slightest rain turns the streets into rivers.

The property line of the house I live in has shrunk over the years because of the rains widening the ravine behind us. It's family owned and no one thought to have work done when it was still time. My neighbours back wall fell last year, I wonder if mine will this time around.

15 more potential hurricanes to go. God help us all.

1 comment:

Jean Marc EWALD said...

Ok where to begin?

I surely do not wish to defend the USA (or any other industrial contry for that matter but you know me... Even the devil needs an advocate or so it seems).
Fact: take away most of the things beeing blamed for the "greenhouse efect" and guess what it would still be rising!
Slower yes but let's face it: HUMANOIDS are too numerous, too smart and too adaptable for nature to control them without causing what we typically call: "a global disaster" (named Katrina or tsunami!)
Have you guys been to the biodome in Montreal (YES GUILTY ONE YOU HAVE) nature has a way of controlling populations that do not submit to her! ...Bear population gets out of control, Salmon population grows thin, bear grow hungry from lack of salmon, bear dies, bear population gets back to normal level. This is how mother earth works it is called killing the excess( music please: it's the ciiiiircle of life dididimtadamtanoohwayehoh tralala itoo)some time god gets involved and WW2 or 911 happens (ok fwa saa si yo rayi mwen se mwen ki cheche li)
To change this we must be humble and give up our way of life with vaccines, and modern medical miracles and confort. Ever wondered if we were suppose to live that long? is it worth it (OK there is cialis and Viagra now but...let us not get into it now)Who's ready to give up their modern way of life? (do you know that even our constant _dare I say it_ farting is actually verry responsible, more responsible on a global scale for global warming(oh no you will not beleive me but before you don't...: resarch!) than modern day industrial emissions which are getting cleaner and cleaner). Ok if the USA would submit to those treaties it would help but beleive me most of the "Pays" (nottice the language... hum hum I do not want to talk about them) have their own little skeletons in the closet?(nuclear waist in the pacific). It is also easy for some countries that are so Fn' rich to moralise: in the words of my eternal next door neighboor the Haitien typic: "yo rive kote yo pwale a yo menm"
Ok I made my point and attracted a lot of enemies. let me just say for my defense that I am not as stupid, as cynical, nor as proamerica/promodernliving/antieuropean as I may appear. But I do like to clarify the other point de vue. Everybody goes through a tough time: America and many privileged places in the world are going through a lot of doodoo, YES! USA needs to ressest its way of thinking and not just them, YES! but we have all inherited a world with a funny thing called KARMA that knows how to get back at us. isn't it funny the way the hurricanes seem to be missing Haiti lately. We've never been hit in a way that would cause serious damage, but we get a little Gonaives or fonds-verrettes once in a while and the political/social/economical situation have their tolls. What can we do? anyone knows the answer?

JME