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July 8, 2015 | By Tim Kovach
Karachi, the world’s second largest city by population, is emerging from the grips of a deadly heatwave. A persistent low pressure system camped over the Arabian Sea stifled ocean breezes and brought temperatures in excess of 113°F (45°C) to the city of 23 million people in June. The searing heat disrupted electricity and water service, making life nearly unbearable. All told, officials estimate the heatwave killed at least 1,200 Pakistanis, more than twice as many as have died in terrorist attacks this year. (more…)
It’s election day in the United States, so we’ll be brief. In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, we have seen great tragedy, but also hope for the resilience of American democracy in the face of climatic changes, and devastated infrastructure. One such example involves the process of voting. In New Jersey, the U.S. military will be providing mobile polling places in the form of military vehicles for those who will have difficulty getting to the polls. Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey has also announced that voters will be able to either email or fax their votes in, offering up another channel for people to exercise their right. But it is yet to be seen how many people are kept from voting because of the storm, and how well these emergency systems work in terms of keeping that number low. Watch this space for more later.
The recent events in the Maldives, which led to the ouster of a President known for his human rights and climate activism, is a potential blow to both the island nation’s fledgling democracy (conceived a mere four years ago), and its ambitions for climate resilience. In the span of a few hours, the country’s democratic dawn turned to democratic night. (more…)