• Jul, 2021
  • 22-07-2021
  • Floods: Germany had massive floods causing over 100 deaths, and China's Henan had 8 months worth of rain in a day

    China reported 33 deaths. Roughly $200m in damage, expected that estimate will be increased.

    Media censorship in China again highlighted. Government-controlled media, no critical media to investigate and ask critical questions. Social media accounts that ask about role of authorities get deleted and censored.

    One question is whether local authorities warned citizens soon enough. A counterargument is that they had no reason to expect that much rain (once in a lifetime situation).

    Chinese people's political double-standards in a strictly-controlled information environment also at issue: state media covered German floods, Siberian forest fires, Canada heat wave, and drew climate change conclusions. But when something similar happens in China they focus on it as being just an exceptional event.
    #Censorship
     
  • Jul, 2021
  • 06-07-2021
  • Saiga antelopes almost wiped out 6 years ago, then there was a baby boom

    Pastruela killed 90% of the species in 2015. Scientists have 2 theories. One, the bacteria, already in the animal (it exists in healthy Saigas at least sometimes, scientists have found), is triggered to grow by something and it kills them. Two, there is an amoeba in the environment that is infected by the bacteria, and then in the wet season the bacteria becomes active, and meanwhile it is somehow consumed when the antelopes grazes.

    Saiga populations recover quickly, though. Females at age 1 have one calf. Older females have twins, and the most mature, larger females can have 3.

    The current population is estimated at 250,000, just like before the endemic on the Kazakh steppe. People in 2015 worried they might become extinct.

    They are now returning to the same grazing ground, though. Experts have little doubt the same plight will affect them again.

    They also face a possible new highway through their migration ground, which would connect the Caspian Sea (at Aktau) and the Nur-Sultan (the capital city).



     

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