The Stream, August 28: Hurricane Harvey Rainfall ‘Beyond Anything Experienced Before’

The Global Rundown

Rain from Hurricane Harvey inundates southeast Texas, causing widespread flooding. Back-to-back typhoons hit Hong Kong. The latest rainfall forecast for the Horn of Africa indicates that above normal rains may end the region’s drought. Climate change threatens Ethiopia’s coffee industry, jeopardizing the lives of 15 million farmers. China has launched $100 billion worth of water clean-up projects since the beginning of the year.

“The breadth and intensity of this rainfall is beyond anything experienced before.” –The National Weather Service, in reference to the devastation to southeastern Texas caused by Hurricane Harvey. Since Thursday, the city of Houston recorded 25 inches of rain, and up to 30 inches have fallen in other parts of the state. The intense rainfall left several Houston neighborhoods underwater and thousands stranded in high waters. Rainfall totals could reach up to 50 inches. ABC News

By The Numbers

8,000 Number of water clean-up projects that China began in the first half of 2017. The projects stem from a 2015 action plan to address water pollution throughout the country. The quality of water will be improved in at least 325 contaminated groundwater sites. Reuters

In context: Shenzhen’s new path to sustainability is crowded with obstacles.

27 Number of temporary shelters set up in Hong Kong as the second typhoon this week hit the region. Hundreds of flights were delayed and 51 people sought medical treatment during the typhoon period. Tropical Cyclone Hato hammered the region on Wednesday, causing deaths in Macau and damage in southern China. Bloomberg

Science, Studies, And Reports

Overly hot dry seasons could threaten Ethiopia’s coffee industry in coming years. Recent studies show that up to 60 percent of the area currently used to grow coffee in the country may be unusable by the end of the century. Ethiopia is the world’s fifth-largest coffee producer and an estimated 15 million Ethiopian farmers rely on coffee for their livelihood. Al Jazeera

On The Radar

A newly-released rainfall forecast for the Horn of Africa shows that the ‘short rains’ of October, November, and December will be normal to above normal. Sufficient rainfall would bring relief throughout the region, which has been suffering from drought for over a year. Kenya Broadcasting Corporation