Fire Earth

Mass die-offs from human impact and planetary response to the assault could occur by early 2016

Posts Tagged ‘Survivors’

World Disaster Update

Posted by feww on May 18, 2008

Nargis Cyclone, Myanmar

Torrential tropical rain lashed Myanmar’s Irrawaddy delta worsening the misery of an estimated 2.5 million survivors of Cyclone Nargis and further hampering the military government’s aid efforts, Reuters reported.


Monks stand beside a partially damaged Buddha statue in a storm devastated village near Kyacek tan, Myanmar, May 14, 2008, presumably wondering what if the statue was completely destroyed! (REUTERS/Stringer) Image may be subject to copyright. See FEWW Fair Use Notice!

The official toll for the dead and missing now stands at more than 133,000, but other estimates are reported the figure as high as 200,000. About 2.5 million people in the Irrawaddy delta have been severly affected and are struggling for survival. Some cases of cholera have been found in the Irawaddy delta, however, the numbers are in line with normal levels recorded in previous years. More Photos …

Videos (updated May 20, 2008 )

1. Scrambling for food
2. Death and destruction

China Quake

The earthquake in southwestern China has so far claimed about 30,000 lives. Another strong aftershock measuring 5.7 in magnitude (the 75th in the cluster since the 7.9Mw mainshock 6 days ago) struck about 80km WSW of Guangyuan, Sichuan, China early Sunday morning local time forcing thousands of the survivors to flee the Beichuan area amid fears a local lake could burst its banks.


Soldiers, relief workers and residents flee to higher ground in Beichuan, Sichuan province May 17, 2008 amid fears a local lake could burst its bank after the 75th strong aftershock struck the area. (REUTERS/Stringer) Image may be subject to copyright. See FEWW Fair Use Notice!

The authorities expect the final death toll from the earthquake to exceed 50,000. About 4.8 million people have lost their homes. A reported 500,000 buildings were damaged or destroyed by the earthquake. More photos . . .

Videos (updated May 20, 2008 )

1. Rescuers arrived too late!
2. Quake survivors flee fearing floods
3. Where’s the money government promised us?

Government Stats: [May 18, 11:00AM Local Time]

  • Death toll : 28,881
  • Still buried under the rubble: 10,600 people
  • Injured : about 170,000 people
  • Building damage: 15 million building in Sichuan, Gansu and Shaanxi provinces have been destroyed or severely damaged (AFP).
  • Dams and reservoirs damaged: 391 units
  • No of displaced: 4.8 million people at 2,885 locations

Photo Gallery

Chaiten volcano

Chaiten volcano (Chile) is spewing out hot ash and smoke, as it rumbles and creates tremors. Falling ash is clogging up the local Blanco and Raya rivers forcing them to overflow their banks, flooding the area in the surrounding areas.

The city of Chaiten, about 6km from the erupting volcano, almost entirely flooded, has been declared off-limits for three months by the Chilean government.


A house flooded by river Blanco in Chaiten city May 12, 2008. (REUTERS/Stringer). Image may be subject to copyright. See FEWW Fair Use Notice!

“There’s been additional volcanic activity that we’re really worried about,” regional governor Sergio Galilea said.

Chile is home to a cluster of about 2,000 volcanoes (second only to Indonesia), 500 of which are thought to be potentially active. (Source) More photos . . .

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Posted in Climate Change, environment, food, Global Warming, health, politics, Travel | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

Chinese paratroopers rescuing survivors or preventing plague?

Posted by feww on May 16, 2008

The Riddle of the Chinese Paratroopers

China parachutes 100 paratroopers to “cut-off” quake area

The first batch of 100 elite paratroopers were parachuted into an area near the epicenter of Monday’s earthquake in southwest China ["cut-off" area in Maoxian county, northeast of the epicenter in Wenchuan] Wednesday afternoon [about 60 hours later], reported Xinhua.


Elite Paratroopers landing near quake epicenter. Image may be subject to copyright. See FEWW Fair Use Notice!

So what’s the problem?

1. There are an estimated 30,000 people burried in the area. How could 100 paratroopers help rescue such large number of victims?

2. The paratroopers landed two days after the mainshock had struck. By then the survival chances of the victims who had been buried alive had already been reduced by about 80 percent.

3. Anyone rescued from the rubble would need medical attention, freshwater, food, blankets, tents … to survive. Did the paratroopers carry all of the vital supplies in their rucksacks?

Therefore, the question remains: Are the paratroopers sent to rescue the “survivors,” or to “finish off the job,” i.e., bury everyone, alive or dead, to prevent potential outbreaks of plague and other pandemics? [The Beijing Olympics are just around the corner!]

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Posted in Climate Change, disaster, environment, food, health, plague, storm, Tourism, Travel, water rationing, water shortage, wealth | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 21 Comments »

How Many More Survivors?

Posted by feww on May 16, 2008

The Clueless Wen Jiabao: “Most wide-spreading impact”

Chinese PM, Wen Jiabao, was quoted as saying that the 7.9-magnitude quake that hit southwestern Sichuan province on Monday had the “most wide-spreading impact” of any earthquake since the People’s Republic of China was founded in 1949, Xinhua news agency quoted Wen as saying.

[Note, for reasons unknown to FEWW moderators, the earthquake cluster's mainshock was previously reported as magnitude 7.8, erroneously!]


The aftermath of a large earthquake cluster. (Credit: Reuters/Jason Lee) Image may be subject to copyright. See FEWW Fair Use Notice!

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Bleak Future Awaits the “Lucky” Survivors

Posted by feww on May 12, 2008

Myanmar: Nearly 2 million struggling to survive Nargis aftermath

Thousands of the survivors of Cyclone Nargis face a bleak future, starvation and death, as they abandon what was once their villages in Myanmar’s Irrawaddy delta in search of water, food and medicine.

According to the U.N. humanitarian agency between 1.2 million and 1.9 million are struggling to survive eight days after the storm struck their impoverished country.


Villagers display a sign saying ‘Help Us’ on a road near Kundangon May 11, 2008. Even if they manage to find food and shelter, the 1.5 million destitute survivors of Myanmar’s Cyclone Nargis still face a major risk from infected wounds, chronic diarrhoea and malaria or dengue. (REUTERS/Stringer. Caption: Reuters) Image may be subject to copyright. See FEWW Fair Use Notice.

The death toll could range from 63,290 to 101,682, with 220,000 people reported as missing, the report said, while “acute environmental issues” threaten the health and lives of the survivors. (Source)

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