The Stream, December 29: Monsoon Floods Strike Malaysia and Thailand

The  Global Rundown

The Global Rundown

Malaysia and Thailand are being hit with severe flooding during the seasonal monsoon, 10 years after floods from a major tsunami devastated Southeast Asia. Meanwhile, properties worth billions of dollars are at risk of falling into the sea in the United Kingdom. Companies in the United States paid billions in environmental fines and cleanups last year, and scientists are trying to use algae to clean mine waste. Oman is cracking down on illegal water wells.

“It is a very difficult issue, but we can’t defend everything at all costs. There are just not the resources to do it and keep on doing it.”–Professor Rob Duck of Dundee University, on an unpublished report from the United Kingdom Environment Agency that shows nearly 7,000 of the country’s homes and buildings, worth more than $1.5 billion, will be lost to rising seas and coastal erosion over the next century. (Guardian)

By the Numbers

By The Numbers

24 people Killed by severe monsoon floods in Malaysia and Thailand, the worst in more than a decade. Reuters

10 years Time since a devastating tsunami hit Indonesia, Sri Lanka and other countries in Southeast Asia, killing 350,000 people. IPS

$10.2 billion Amount paid in environmental fines and cleanups by United States companies in 2014, including the largest cleanup settlement in the country’s history. Guardian


Science, Studies, And Reports

Scientists in the United Kingdom are pursuing a pilot project to grow algae in toxic waste water from a tin mine. They hope the algae will remove heavy metals that can then be recycled for electronics, while the rest of the waste will be converted to biofuels. Guardian

On the Radar

On The Radar

Oman said it will begin cracking down on water wells that are dug without proper licensing and approval. Times of Oman

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