Hotspots and Incidents » Disasters, catastrophes

Third of planet's population will fall victims to Nature's catastrophes

According to the World's Meteorological Organization (WMO), there soon might be an unprecedented amount of catastrophic weather anomalies on the Earth.

Third world countries will suffer the most.
A record high number of severe weather conditions has been reported for the past few months. In June of 2003, temperature in south France has reached 40 degrees Centigrade, which exceeds the norm by 5-7 degrees. In Switzerland, this June turned out to be the hottest in 250 year history. Analogues weather abnormalities happen in various countries world wide. America had a record number of tornadoes: 562 have been reported. In June 1992, the number reached 399. In addition, a significant increase in precipitation has been observed in the country. India similar to Europe is currently suffering from intolerable heat. Temperature often reaches 49 degrees Centigrade, which is 5 degrees higher than the usual. Sri-Lanka in the meantime endures massive rainstorms, which already caused mudslides and flooded considerable areas.
WMO representatives claim that despite such climatic records, one should not be convinced that the Earth will soon be devoured by climatic apocalypse. Scientists claim that similar climatic abnormalities have already taken place.
There is an increase of a number of cases concerning weather abnormalities such as temperature increase/decrease, droughts or rain showers. Back then however such abnormalities were rarely recorded. One should also take into account the following factor. Today, information travels at a much faster speed than it used to. Nowadays, people learn about disastrous catastrophes practically the moment they happen. As a result, they form an opinion as though catastrophes happen daily.
Nonetheless, the overall amount of Nature's catastrophes is rising parallel to the global warming. According to WMO, Earth's temperature has been increasing since the mid 19th century. The temperature increased by o.6 degrees in the past century. Global temperature might increase by 1,4-5,8 degrees by the end of this century.
Russian scientists consider that people contribute only 10-15% to the global warming. The rest is simply a natural trend. WMO predicts that the world's ocean's level will rise by one meter in one hundred years. As a result, our planet might suffer agricultural disasters. Third world countries will be among the first to suffer such dramatic consequences.
Some experts do not predict any major floods. They claim that the planet will have to endure severe cold weather in 5-6 years.
As for the increasing number of natural catastrophes, this is mainly a result of rapid population increase in the world. People in the third world countries tend to settle on river banks, on shorelines as well as on water-meadows. Therefore, it is harder to escape disasters in such cases. Similar situation happened in Europe. A lot of places are asphalted there. Therefore, water no longer evaporates or turns to ground waters. Instead, it travels straight to the nearby water canal. This was exactly the reason for the last year's flood in Western and Eastern Europe. What can we expect from the upcoming year?        

Doctor Matson