The recent flooding that hit Louisiana is the worst natural disaster to hit the United States since Hurricane Sandy hit New Jersey in 2012. So far we know that at least 13 are dead and tens of thousands were left homeless in the flooding. Even worse, most of those affected do not have flood insurance. Up to $21 billion worth of housing stock was wiped out by the deluge of rain.
The recovery will be long and difficult in one of the poorest states in the country. There is the challenge of finding employment and housing for all these displaced people. Given the fact that Louisiana is a hot and humid state most of the year, there will also be the issues of dealing with mold and increased injuries as people try to rebuild.
Macedonians are outraged their government is asking for flood relief donations, while spending millions in taxpayers money on a massive ferris wheel, and that they are not diverting critical construction resources and machinery towards flood relief.
At least 21 people died, and dozens are missing and injured, in floods that hit the Macedonian capital Skopje, following torrential rains on August 5. The water level in some areas reached a height of 1.5 metres (4 ft 11 in) because the drainage systems were faulty or did not exist.
Social media has played a key role in the aftermath of disasters that have struck China. Following the 2008 Sichuan earthquake, China’s Twitter-like Weibo was used for coordinating disaster relief work. And after last year’s Tianjian explosion, as local media pushed superficial coverage or ignored the event altogether, Web users published and spread first-hand photos and updates.
Social media is a place for victims of a tragedy to express their sorrow and seek each other out for support. It’s also a place for citizens to publish their own observations and reporting — even if China’s strict censors end up deleting them.
That’s what’s happening at the moment with news related to widespread flooding, affecting 26 provinces. So far, around 1.5 million people are displaced and 180 have been killed. The Chinese Communist Party believes that disaster news should be positive and in alignment with their ideology, thus the lack of critical or hard-hitting information.