Flood Insurance – Who should Pay?

Insurance is, as Orwell called it, a swindle, but at least it is a logical swindle. Insurance rates are calculated on the industry’s view of statistics; the uplift and margin applied to those statistics are the tools of the swindle, but the fundamental premium you pay depends on the figures. If you wish to insure your life you age and the statistical analysis of your longevity will be relevant and if you want to insure your home against losses suffered by flooding then the likelihood of flooding in the place where your home is situate is part of the figuring which sets the price that you pay. If the insurance company, when looking at the statistics tells you that it will not insure your home at any price, then you know that flooding is not merely possible but highly probable. Continue reading

Flooding in Bangkok

Once again unprecedented flooding is affecting another part of the world. The Prime Minister of Thailand, Ms Yingluck Shinawatra, has warned that the capital city, Bangkok, could be soon covered with water one and a half deep. October is at the very end of the rainy season in Bangkok, which has a tropical wet and dry climate. The City is home to more than nine million people and while most of it is dry at present parts of the surrounding countryside have been under two or three metres of water for three months. Continue reading

A little good news for a change

It is not always possible to report good environmental news; little of it exists. Environmentalists of needs must be moaners and doom and gloom merchants trying tp prevent people from dealing in the destruction of what we all need to enjoy life. Continue reading

A Sign of the Times

Hurricane Irene changed, as hurricanes do, into Tropical Storm Irene.  It started in the Leeward Islands, passed through the Eastern part of the United States and ended up in Canada, moving at speeds from eighty miles an hour to fifty miles a hour. Get used to hurricanes and storms becoming more frequent; they are a sign of the times. Continue reading

Just when you thought it was safe to go into the water…

A year ago most of us were concerned by the 4.9 million barrels (205.8 million gallons) of oil spillage in the Gulf of México. Today there is little news on the spillage. The Gulf has absorbed much of the oil, much of it has been dispersed by chemicals and much cleaned up from the sea shore. It seems some of the marine life is safe and prospering; although in certain cases there has been irremediable damage to the environment. Continue reading

Do we really need the Great Barrier Reef?

It is really a collection of many coral reefs almost joined together and extending from north to south in a thin strip off the east coast of Australia. It is lovely to look at, if you scuba dive, snorkel or take a boat, contains many interesting animals and is a good tourist puller. But do we really need it. Continue reading

It is partly our fault

The United Nations have reported that the Horn of Africa and nearby regions are suffering their worst drought for sixty years. The effects of today’s drought are much worse than that of previous droughts because many more people now live in this region, some of which is ravaged by war. Ethiopia and Somalia are in real a state of emergency and parts of Kenya and the Sudan are in crisis. Altogether it is estimated by the United Nations that nine million people are in peril. Continue reading