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I mean, look at a place like Bangladesh. Their problem is not that the country is flat and next to the sea, but that they can't get their shit together. The Dutch have built levees for hundreds of years: it only takes dicipline.

Discipline and carefully accumulated capital from centuries of profiting off the backs of poor wretches like the Bangladeshi.

Levees are an overestimated solution, and a rather figmental one for Bangladesh. Minor levees might work in the Ganges/Brahmaputra delta, but the thing is just a tad more impressive than the Rhine/Meuse delta, and packs a bit more punch in the monsoon season, or when it gets hit by a cyclone. And in day to day life you get all kinds of problems with salinisation, with people starting to live on newly deposited sediments all the time. Plus, you want those deposits, especially in the face of a potentially rising Indian Ocean.

Even the Dutch are spending more attention to 'living with water' as you can see from our spangling adaptation strategy.

Disaster preparedness is a broad field! Having a good information structure and some local shelters tend to save a lot of lives right away. As it has done in Bangladesh, where hundreds of thousands used to die every few decades not too long ago, but the average cyclone now doesn't even get to one thousand.

by nanne (zwaerdenmaecker@gmail.com) on Tue Sep 8th, 2009 at 07:36:25 AM EST
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