Matthew Kim, News Writer
From the constant forest fires in British Columbia to the destructive hurricanes in the United States, these natural catastrophes were enough to have the internet explode with sadness, sympathy, and distress. When will the next catastrophe hit and where will it be? Is there a possibility that we could be next?
Ever since the temperature of our province got higher and dryer, British Columbia has been consistently barraged with devastating wildfires, the Cariboo, Kamloops, and Southeast regions of BC were experiencing the most extreme wildfires that Canada has ever faced since 1958. Temperatures as high as 39 degrees Celsius led to a highly combustible environment. Not only did the temperature cause the forest fires to spread, but lightning storms and strong wind gusts worsened the situation. Officials have declared since August that an approximation of 4,910 square kilometers have been affected by the forest fires and possibly still counting. Since that day, the forest fires have cost BC close to $204 million and the destruction was so devastating that Mexican personnel was called to BC for the first time for assistance. There is still extreme caution alerts about more potential wildfires in cities of BC such as Kelowna and Kamloops, but it seems as though it has gotten better.
On the other side of the continent, the US and Central America have their own natural catastrophes to worry about. Instead of wildfires, they have been constantly barraged with hurricanes. Some of these hurricanes included the Turks and Caicos Islands, which were bombarded with the deadly Hurricane Maria and Hurricane Irma, (which hit Florida not that long ago). These hurricanes are currently part of an ongoing season called the Atlantic Hurricane Season. Presently, the annual Atlantic Hurricane Season of 2017 came back more destructive and more powerful than ever. Although on average, strong west to northwest winds with cooler and drier air tend to rub off the tropical storms out of the western Atlantic. However, present winds have been too weak to steer the threat away from the US, meaning that the population is to expect that the hurricanes will not end anytime soon. It is possible that the season could even extend to November and December . . .
“One immediate task is to spend more on getting people prepared. That means developing expert local humanitarian capacity, leading to better contingency planning, risk mitigation, education and awareness.” ~ Laurence Desvignes, Oxfam Program Coordinator