The Stream, June 17: Millions Face Hunger In Africa After Drought

The Global Rundown

Millions of people across 15 African countries are still struggling with inadequate food supplies on the heels of one of the worst droughts in decades. Water, food, and electricity shortages in Venezuela have forced many students and teachers from their classrooms. The glacial source of the Ganga River is shrinking due to insufficient snowfall, scientists say. Oregon has requested a ban on rail shipments of crude oil, but oil refineries warn those shipments would be moved on waterways instead. The improper disposal of wet wipes and oils is causing thousands of sewer blockages in the United Kingdom each year, as well as a growing amount of pollution on beaches.

“A year interrupted like this cannot be recovered. These kids are growing up with an educational deficit.” –Tulio Ramirez, an education expert at Venezuela’s Central University, on the growing number of students and teachers at schools in Venezuela who no longer attend classes because of shortages of food, water, and electricity. (Reuters)

By The Numbers

41.4 million people Number across 15 countries in southern Africa who face food insecurity in the wake of severe droughts linked to El Nino. Bloomberg

366,000 sewer blockages Average number recorded in the United Kingdom each year. Approximately 50 to 80 percent are caused by residents putting unflushable items like oils, grease, and wet wipes down their drains. The Telegraph

Science, Studies, And Reports

The glacier that feeds the Ganga River has retreated more than three kilometers over the past two centuries and is now shrinking at a rate of 22 meters each year, according to researchers. Scientists blame the glacier’s decline primarily on a lack of snowfall, as well as increasing rainfall and rising temperatures. The Third Pole

On The Radar

A week after a crude oil train derailed in the Columbia River gorge, Oregon’s government is requesting that the Federal Railroad Administration ban the shipment of crude oil by rail through the state. Officials at oil refineries in neighboring Washington state warned, however, that stopping rail shipments could increase the amount of crude transported over water. Reuters