Tuesday, April 21, 2009

'Megadrought' coming to Africa, should world be preparing?

In the 70s and 80s, a major drought killed 100,000 in Africa. But that could just be a preview for a much longer, more tragic event. According to recent research on sediments from Ghanaian lake, "historical 'megadroughts' were longer-lasting and even more devoid of precipitation, the researchers found." (BBC) Yes, "the droughts are going to happen again," and, of course, "man-made climate change may make the situation worse."

The continent of Africa needs to start preparing now, investing in desalination technology and building a system to move water from the coasts inland.

What do you think the chances are of that? People like to wait until they're in the middle of a problem to solve it. But isn't an ounce of prevention worth a pound of cure? Since the Africa probably can't afford to prepare for "megadroughts", and the rest of the world isn't going to stand by when one hits and let the continent die, maybe the rest of the world should start investing in this now.

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I started pound360 to channel my obsession with vitamins, running and the five senses. Eventually, I got bored focusing on all that stuff, so I came back from a one month hiatus in May of 2007 (one year after launching Pound360) and broadened my mumblings here to include all science.