Archive for Palm Trees

The Children Are Dying

Posted in Atlantic, Britain, Children, England, Environment, Forests, Health, Human Rights, Oceans, Somaila, Spain, UK, UN, United Nations, USA with tags , , , , , , , , , on 26/09/2011 by floroy1942

Children are dying daily, and almost no-one notices. It is a sad fact that very little Press coverage is given to the human suffering in Africa, where hundreds of people are dying of hunger and disease.

It is not unusual for such occurences to be pushed from the front page of the newspapers by the attention-grabbing headlines about Libya, the Palestinian situation, and the economic crisis. These stories attract readers, while the problems in Africa have been going on for decades. The sad truth is, the story is just not newsworthy.

It does not detract however from the huge suffering encountered in so many African nations. While small children, and grown-ups, are dying by the hundreds every day on this strife-torn continent, the rest of the world looks on and says; “Oh Dear! What a shame! What’s happening in Libya?”

A Dying Child

Aid, such as basic foods and medicine, have for decades been pumped into various African States by well-meaning governments and aid organizations, but it doesn’t help very much. It has reached the stage where the populace live from hand-to-mouth, relying totally on the aid groups. With this attitude, there is little justification for the respective governments to take long-term measures to fix the problem once and for all time.

What Happens To Aid In Africa

Part of the problem is without doubt the massive corruption and theft of not only money, but aid goods also.

Given As Aid – But Sidetracked To The Local Market

Many corrupt politicians and officials have made themselves rich by siphoning off money from donations. It is an everyday sight in many North African towns to see sacks of aid grain for sale openly in the markets.

There is not much by way of a ‘self-help’ programme that will get water to the areas of drought and famine. Water is always scarce in Africa, but there must be ways of getting this precious commodity to the parched areas of the country.

European Oil Pipelines

We lay pipelines for thousands of miles to carry oil to those that need it, but to lay the equivalent for water seems quite impossible. Why? We have laid oil pipelines from  Russia to Western Europe with a distance in excess of 2,000kms, and yet Lake Turkana is only 700kms from central Southern Sudan, and Lake Victoria is just over 1,000kms! Surely, it must be possible to have pipelines carrying water from the great African lakes and rivers, or even desalinated water from the sea, to make these barren lands fertile once more. Once the ground is fit for purpose, it is necessary to plants huge areas of trees.

I can hear the question ‘why’ already.

Rain Forests Of The World

Think for a moment where the most rain falls annually on our planet. If you check your maps, you will find it is mostly in heavily forested areas such as the Amazon, African and Far East rain forests, which is why they are called ‘Rain Forests’. Trees have the ability to change weather patterns like nothing else on the planet. A century ago there were many trees in northern Africa, and the climate was more stable than it is now.

Britain has seen dramatic changes in weather patterns in the last fifty years, ever since huge swathes of woodland were removed to make room for crop growing. Even Romania on the other side of Europe suffers in the same way.

The Green Wall – An Environmental Group Plan

It is inescapable that much of the African problem has been caused by the people themselves. Their only source of fuel in these poor areas is wood, and over the last century, trees have slowly disappeared from the landscape, and now there is not a single one left. This is one of the reasons why the Sahara Desert is continually growing in size by an estimated 30 miles per year. It doesn’t sound much until you see how it has grown since the middle of the last century. Trees bind the soil together and prevent erosion, and in the long term, eventually ensure sufficient rainfall.

If the soil can be made fertile enough to support such growth again, turning back the clock and revitalising the near desert areas of Africa will, in many years time, bring back the rain.

I know it sounds simple, and I can hear many people scoffing at the idea from here, but take one example.

Senseless Destruction Of The Amazonian Forest

The Amazon Rain Forest was once the mightiest forest on the planet, until greedy men started chopping it down. Now, huge swathes of this important forest no longer exist, and what do we have? This year the area suffered its first drought! Drought in the Amazon Rain Forest is unheard of!

As a subsequence of this malicious attack, we have now made a major change to the weather patterns in the Atlantic, which in turn have affected the weather in the Caribbean, the USA and even Europe.

I Would Never Be A Sailor! An Atlantic Storm

It is impossible to say that the destruction of the rain forests is the only reason for these weather phenomenon, for the warming of the oceans has also played a part, but I think this is more the reason for the increase in hurricane and typhoon activity.

Rain Forest Cleared For A Palm Plantation

This whole scenario has been duplicated to a similar degree in Africa and the Far East. In places like Indonesia and Borneo, whole tracts of rain forest are being destroyed to make way for palm trees. So why you might ask, do they want to plant so many palm trees? Palm oil is used for the production of biofuels that are supposed to help save the planet! Now there’s an irony!

So now you may understand my drawing the conclusion that forests have a significant effect on the weather!

Of course, part of the problem is cost. The countries that need it are not in a position to finance such a venture, but then why should the rich nations of our planet, or the IMF, not foot the bill? Of course it will be expensive, and require huge investment by the rich nations, but is this not preferable to the African Continent continually draining money from the world economy for the next thousand years? For there is little doubt, the problem is only going to get worse!

Money Wasted On Aid?

I would hate to estimate how much money has been donated by individuals, charities and governments over the last forty years or so to help the poor of Africa, but you can imagine it must run into trillions of dollars. Would that money not have been better spent on a long-term solution, or are these same people willing to spend another trillion dollars in the future?

While poor, the people of Africa could sustain themselves if their land was fertile enough to produce the food they need. It is in this area that aid would be most useful.

Unless we can motivate the African people, and countries can come together to make their lands fertile again, they will never be able to get out of the abyss they currently find themselves trapped in.

Roy.

%d bloggers like this: