Monday, November 11, 2013

Typhoon Haiyan

I've been hearing bits and pieces of the news of the huge storm that hit the Philippines a few days ago but this morning, I sat down and read the NBC news article on the situation here:

This article says it's estimated that 10,000 people have died but "Nearly 620,000 people were displaced and 9.5 million "affected" across the Philippines," according to the UN. How many more will die due to exposure and disease as they have to go without basic necessities such as clean water?

They are saying this storm is as devastating as the tsunami that destroyed so much of the countries along the Indian Ocean  in 2004! The storm was as big as the country of Germany when it hit the Philippines, for crying out loud! Maybe you already know these things but I'm just finding out this morning, so I'm horrified!

I worked with a Filipina over the past couple of years, helping her become a citizen and getting the benefits she's entitled to, and she has children and grandchildren still in the Philippines.  I called her today and she said they are okay but their house has been washed away. This is the second time her kids have lost their house in a huge storm in the past few years.  Of course, I will send some money to them, via their mother, to help them out.  I would encourage anyone who reads this to send a generous donation to the relief agencies which are trying to cope with this disaster.

As I read the above article, it occurred to me that Mother Nature has a way of solving her problems.  Several years ago, I learned that one of the signs of climate change or global warming, is an increase in severe weather episodes. It seems to me that it's happening these days.  But, when huge and disastrous events occur--such as record-breaking cold in Europe in 2011 which killed many people, storms like Sandy which hit the east coast of the US, and this most recent disaster--thousands of people end up dying.  Is this Mother Nature's way of coping with the human influence on climate change?  The fewer people there are on this planet, the less of a carbon footprint?  Is this nature's way of bringing climate back into balance?

It seems to me that we humans can assist in bring the climate back into balance without having to suffer these extreme weather events.  I'm glad I traded my car for a Prius. It's a very small thing, but it's what I can do to lessen my personal carbon footprint.

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