Tag Archives: Floods

Here and Now

For years scientists warned politicians, but they would not listen and the citizens only thought of what was good for them at that moment, not interested to learn about the impact of their ecological and carbon footprint. No matter what happens nature shall show mankind that it is always stronger than the human being, which has to learn by falling and standing up again.

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To remember

rainfall causes problems to roads, cars, and rail travel => Movement restricted

towns + surrounding areas plagued by floods this winter.

recollection of previous winters = cold mornings with frost covered lawns + a wind that slaps your face with a chilling sting

ground not prepared as no drainage is available + waterways are not viable

foliage not resting as trees + flora remain green > earth rest less

environmental change on animal life > effects of stress, lack of sleep + tiredness

wildlife struggle to maintain their habitats

Medicinalmeadows

image (2)My town and its surrounding areas have been plagued by floods this winter. Movement from town to town is restricted as rainfall causes problems to roads, cars, and rail travel. It seems to be raining for a season. My recollection of previous winters has been cold mornings with frost covered lawns and a wind that slaps your face with a chilling sting. If wet, lingering rain and floods are to be our depths of winter then we are certainly not prepared. The ground is not prepared as no drainage is available and waterways are not viable. The foliage is not resting as trees and flora remain green. I wonder what fauna make of all this weather? What effect is this environmental change having on the animal life?

robinIn our current ways of living we know the effects of stress, lack of sleep and tiredness. Will the earth rest less, will wildlife struggle to maintain…

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Filed under Ecological affairs, Lifestyle, Re-Blogs and Great Blogs

It’s a New Year!

Now and then human being have to be reminded that material is just dust. Often it is with less pleasant experiences that we are pushed with our face in the reality of life.

It is good that at such moments of truth people dare to tell others how they feel and what they experience. Such moments of calamity should make us to think about more important things. It should remind us of our Maker and about our reason being here and how we should relate to each other and our environment.

Institute of Mental Health 10, Nov 06

Institute of Mental Health 10, Nov 06 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Some of the experiences we get in a year may be all too much. They can deliver us more worries and stress than our stress bucket can handle. That is the moment that this also will overflow – at which point we can start to experience symptoms of mental ill health. We can use coping strategies to help tap the bucket, and allow stress to flow away in a healthy and manageable way.

However, no matter how hard we try, no matter how good our coping strategies – exercise, medicines, meditation – no matter how much we avoid the things we know are bad for us – sometimes life throws in a brick and makes it impossible to avoid the inevitable splash. {Bricks in the stress bucket}

Living in this world, even with all the luxury around us certain things also for us can get too much, and our usual coping mechanisms then shall cease to be a match for our concerns, that this can lead us to develop emotional / mental health issues. Some might want to use their employees as machines, bu we are human beings not without inner feelings, and life throws things at us that we don’t always know how to deal with very well.

Sadly a lot of people may well be experiencing that overspill in the coming months –  widespread flooding across the North of the United Kingdom (and in Missouri, red.) has devastated lives, homes, businesses. People are still cleaning up, throwing out years worth of possessions and irreplaceable mementoes, wondering where on earth the money will come from to replace even the more mundane things like microwaves and kettles. {Bricks in the stress bucket}

When bad things happen in a certain region that is often also the time people are coming to know each other in an other, and hopefully in a better way.

The good news is that we have seen the most amazing evidence of the goodness of humanity – people helping eachother to clean up, everyone banding together. Volunteers travelling from near and far, donations pouring in – individuals and organisations and companies are doing a lot to ensure that things are put right as quickly as possible. I have a lot of hope that some minds have been changed, and eyes opened by the sheer generosity and kindness which has been shown by diverse communities from across the country in this little valley. {Bricks in the stress bucket}

Hopefully, that evidence of love and kinship will help people in more than just the practical ways. But in the weeks and months to come, people will start to be impacted by the trauma they have experienced. The exhaustion of the effort they have had to put in to get their homes dry, stay fed, keep themselved and their families safe – it will creep up on people and affect them in ways they may not expect. {Bricks in the stress bucket}

Some may think that such things will soon be forgotten, but they are not. Life has to go on and people will find a way to cope with it, but is shall leave its scars. It is perfectly understandable, and natural, that this will creep up on people and affect them in ways they may not expect.

Human beings have so much ignored nature around them that now nature is giving back an answer which is not so pleasant at times. 2015 may have been the warmest year since the measuring but it had its moments of heavy winds and pouring waters.

Storms have mercilessly battered Britain, one after the other over this festive period, bringing with them severe and unrelenting floods. The scale of damage and devastation was unprecedented, but it was not unpredictable. We’ve seen these storms growing with intensity every year. And, whilst a few might naively blame El Niño for this recent bout, we know that climate change is the driving factor. {UK flooding: the new normal in a changed climate}

Throughout the years we have shown our unrespectfulness and neglectfulness to mother nature that now time has come to have it respond to us on not such a friendly way either.

The harsh truth is that even if we cut all emissions today, we can’t undo what damage we’ve already done. The carbon we’ve pumped into the atmosphere will remain there for generations to come and so too will the weather it brings with it. The climate has changed, it continues to change and there’s no going back. These violent winter storms, and the floods they bring with them, are here to stay. {UK flooding: the new normal in a changed climate}

And that each rainfall will bring unease (indeed we know there is always a risk of the waters rising again – our last disaster brought two floods in one month). So it is vital that people recognise that their emotions, their mental health deserve as much care as their physical health, and that they seek help if they are struggling – in the same way they would seek help if they start to vomit / get toilet trouble that may come as a result of being in contact with the polluted flood waters. {Bricks in the stress bucket}

I think it would be particularly useful for those of us in the community who wish to support our friends and families – who perhaps know people they think might struggle to accept mental health difficulties in themselves and so not seek help when they need it. {Bricks in the stress bucket}

When the rivers retreat from historic and deadly winter flooding, leaving amid the silt a massive cleanup and recovery effort likely to take weeks if not months, people have to find a new way to continue their life.

The level of global change we’re experiencing now presents many interconnected, multi-faceted challenges that have affected and will affect different countries in different ways. It is hard to tell as a layperson what this means, but the experts have long since warned that the most severe effects in the UK would be powerful storms and increased flooding. There has been very little to suggest that the government has taken these warnings seriously, as they still seem to operate on the principle that it’s better to be sorry than safe. But they can’t keep living in denial, we are living in a different world. The Earth has warmed by one degree and it’s time we started acting like it. {UK flooding: the new normal in a changed climate}

Going into a new year lets think about all those people who are experiencing the worst things people can endure, war, floods …. and let us hope more people shall be willing to stand ready for them in need and help them to find the good things in life again.

May the good things in your life also be more lightening than your bad experiences of the year and let 2016 be a year of good health and a progression in the good direction.

God bless.

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Further readings

  1. When life spills over the edge – can you help?
  2. Emergency responders manage risks as river rises above flood stage
  3. A Slightly Different View Of Aberdeen Beach Today…
  4. St. Louis area faces big cleanup effort after flooding
  5. Deluge
  6. Storms and Floods
  7. 2016 Start
  8. Deadly floods choke operations from oil to wheat in U.S. Midwest
  9. UK flooding: the new normal in a changed climate
  10. The EU Water Framework Directive & The Role Played By Green NGO’s
  11. The Perks of Escaping Your Mind Through Nature
  12. …And, she’s back!!
  13. Tired
  14. 1/3-stress on stress
  15. Self-Care Sunday: What’s Worked For Me
  16. Happy New Year
  17. Taking Stock
  18. God’s Words of Comfort in Times of Fear – January 3, 2016
  19. Not a bad start
  20. Shit I’m Gonna Try to Accomplish This Year
  21. Worry Stress: Make a Decision Now
  22. Growing Young
  23. Calm down.

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Filed under Being and Feeling, Ecological affairs, Headlines - News, Lifestyle, Nature, Re-Blogs and Great Blogs, Social affairs

The natural beauties of life

When we look around us we should be able to see all the beauty of nature. But many of us live in cities where we are surrounded by buildings and not much green.

The beautiful nature is given to us freely, but not many people do respect that free gift as such. We, as human beings are also not so keen to use it properly and to take into account that many after us still have to be able to enjoy as much as we did or even more. Often terrible things have to happen before we as human being want to think about what is going on or what our responsibility should be for making sure lots of people can enjoy those treasures of earth.

In many Asian countries several people are already seriously feeling the effects of the industrial revolution and the technical progress of the last two centuries. People may be happy the world advanced so much and that we do have a lot of gadgets which make life so much easier. But in many poor countries those people do not enjoy such modern domestication? Several families  by powerful storms found their riverside home destroyed already more than once. Millions have already lost more than the modest roof over their head. Millions spend their days collecting cow dung for fuel and struggling to grow vegetables in soil poisoned by salt water. They live on borrowed time in a vast landscape of river islands, bamboo huts, heartbreaking choices and impossible hopes.

Government representatives and scientists on Tuesday March the 25th opened a five-day meeting of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) to finalize a report assessing the impacts of climate change on human and natural systems, options for adaptation, and the interactions among climate changes, other stresses on societies, and opportunities for the future.

The meeting, the culmination of four years’ work by hundreds of experts who have volunteered their time and expertise to produce a comprehensive assessment, was to approve the Summary for Policymakers of the second part of the IPCC’s Fifth Assessment Report, checking the text line by line.

The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) wants to achieve a stabilization of green-house gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system. Such a level should be achieved within a time frame sufficient to allow ecosystems to adapt naturally to climate change, to ensure that food production is not threatened and to enable economic development to proceed in a sustainable manner.
All of us should be aware that limiting the effects of climate change is necessary to achieve sustainable development and equity, including poverty eradication. At the same time, some mitigation efforts could undermine action on the right to promote sustainable development, and on the achievement of poverty eradication and equity. Consequently, a comprehensive assessment of climate policies involves going beyond a focus on mitigation and adaptation policies alone to examine development pathways more broadly, along with their determinants.

We all should also know that we have to take a collective action because we are speaking of problem at the global scale, because most greenhouse gases (GHGs) accumulate over time and mix globally, and emissions by any agent (e.g., individual, community, company,country) affect other agents. International cooperation is therefore required to effectively mitigate GHG emissions and address other climate change issues.

Social, economic and ethical analyses may be used to inform value judgements and may take into account values of various sorts, including human well-being, cultural values and non-human values. But all people should be informed how much they themselves also can contribute to the global effect, even when their personal impact may be very small it is important that everybody does his or her own bit for the protection of the earth.
Awareness and appreciation for the environment is very important, so we should help to get others to be more concious of the importance to safeguard the earth’s future and the future of our children their children.
We would like to present a website where the beauties of nature are nicely presented but where one is not afraid to see behind all that beauty the danger of vanishing worlds. We have evolved far away form the snapshots that have served as surrogates, except perhaps for one surrogate which continues to grow, namely the extended reach of the body’s comprehension of the world.
Doing so more insistently than did other forms of mimetic representation, photography seemed to stand in for the direct, bodily experience of the individual, its lens becoming the roving eye of the beholder. Most obviously one sees this in travel and expeditionary photographs of the nineteenth century, for which skilled professionals travelled forth from Western Europe and the eastern USA to record and bring back views of sites as various as India, the American West and the Middle East. {Oxford Companion to the Body }
Photography, you could say, is the visual medium of this modern world, were events can be captured for the future, but were stories of the past can be a witness of the things human beings did or because they did not want to see, refusing to hear the signs, have been lost for the next generations.
As a means of recording, and as an art form in its own, photography pervades our lives and shapes our perceptions…

A private photobook collector and trader, living in the Netherlands, who has sold many photobooks online (Ebay.nl, Marktplaats.nl & Boekwinkeltjes.nl/Bint) and therefore has also set up a devoted website (see http://bintphotobooks.googlepages.com/)& his Blog (see http://bintphotobooks.blogspot.com/) brings us a variety of artists worth viewing.

We do know that:
“Perception is relative and selective”…If the presenter does not clarify a message, then the receiver imposes his own meaning drawing from his/her experience, needs and expectations.

On his website we can find many beautiful photographs which clearly tell a story which has to be heard by many. Therefore we also like to introduce you to it. Our world is much to important to have it been destroyed by the greed of our consumerism.

The one looking through the lens may capture a whole story in one click and make it easy for others to see that what is behind the picture. Every photographer may put his own statement in the way he looks at things. Behind the pictures may be told also a whole story and the writer of Bint photobooks may carry us away along the threads of reality which often stay hidden for those who live in the cities of the Western world.

In Kadir van Lohuizen: Putting stories into perspective for example we can learn that the celebrated Dutch photographer Kadir van Lohuizen feels that there are many big stories around the world that need to be told and that it is his responsibility to tell them in the right way. He brings us with his camera from the North to the South, from Greenland to Kiribati and Fiji, close to Australia, passing by Panama but also showing us the problems of cities in the United States, like Boston, all places where they feel the rising sees. On the net we also can find some other interesting photographs of professional photographers, like Mitch Zeissler, and non-professional photographers, who do have a very good eye, like Cindy Barton Knoke who is willing to share that what she encounters on her many travels. Having such people willing to share the beauties they managed to see others are allowed to enjoy them too, which is great. This way people who are not in good health or do not have the money or no means to make such trips to far away places can receive their dreams by such bloggers.

Having lots of people living between the structures of living quarters and offices, often confronted with the fumes, dust and pollution, they may value such beautiful countrysides, animals and by Cindy Barton Knoke also beautiful art, which give richness to the world. Those living in countries with wide fields, like in the United States perhaps do not see any sign of pollution in their region, and do think perhaps everything is exaggerated, but when they can see and hear the witnesses of those who can move around, come in different places or do scientific work, they perhaps come to believe that it is really time we do something to protect what we still have. In Belgium we are confronted with pollution and climate change nearly every day, so perhaps the Belgians do feel the urge to look for solutions more than some other citizens.

Climate-Greenland-slide-BJBO-superJumbo.jpgClimate-Greenland-slide-YDQV-superJumbo.jpg
Icebergs in a channel between Greenland’s Eqip Sermia glacier and Ilulissat Icefjord, the most active glacier in the Northern Hemisphere and so many other pictures Bint presents with his article on Kadir van Lohuizen is only showing us the figurative and literal top of the ice sheet melting as a result of climate change.

In 2012 van Lohuizen started project looking into consequences of sea-level rise in the world. Therefore he went to different regions that have been or will be affected quite soon by the rise, and researched where people will have to relocate.

The 50-year-old photographer said he started the project after visiting a delta area in Bangladesh around three years ago, where he was struck by the apparent impact of rising sea levels and noticed that Bangladesh expects to evacuate 30 million people by 2050 due to rising sea levels.

He is also aware that the issue is more urgent than most people assume

“it’s very much knocking on our doors.”

The world has waited already too long before taking the matter serious. Like in most places there has to happen something serious before people do something.

“Too often we start to think about the problem when it has happened, but not before.”

Bint writes

Aiming to raise awareness in the general audience, Kadir hoped that the message would also reach politicians and policymakers.

and gives the word to van Lohuizen who says:

“It’s going to be the biggest problem of the century. It’s not just islands disappearing but also sea water seeping into the mainland, causing soil to become saline, rendering people unable to grow crops and having more difficulty accessing clean water.”

We better make sure others get to know the beauties of nature but also show how endangered the species and our own environment is. We clearly have to share the message of the importance to keep our world in good health.

The "burning embers" diagram above w...

The “burning embers” diagram above was produced by the IPCC in 2001. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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