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In total, 36 people were injured and went to the hospital with all but one released by today and most flew home yesterday.
According to USA Today, an investigation is now underway to determine why the ship sailed into the storm. “We don’t know the reason why the ship sailed, knowing such bad weather was forecast,” Kurt Olsen, acting director for Norway’s Accident Investigations Board, told USA TODAY. “We have a very good weather service in this country, so I would guess the crew knew everything about the forecast. How they responded will definitely be part of the investigation.” Torstein Hagen, chairman of ship owner Viking Ocean Cruises, apologized to the passengers for what they had been through.
Why This Matters: An apology?? As if that would do it. This particular Viking cruise ship seemed woefully unprepared to deal with the stormy weather it ran into when its engine failed, which begs the question of what it was doing sailing into the stormy weather in the first place. Stormy weather is not unexpected in that part of the world, and it is likely to be a more frequent occurrence in the future due to climate change. The commercial transportation industries — ships, airplanes, buses, and trains should all be better equipped to deal with severe weather when it arises in order to keep their passengers safe. So should hotels that are sitting on coastlines that we know are vulnerable to storm surge and sea level rise. This storm and resulting evacuation are not likely to be a freak event — and it shows that the tourism industry needs to be better prepared for climate change.
Hurricane Isaias, while only a category 1 (low strength) storm, caused great damage along the coast of the Carolinas and inland up the I-95 corridor, with several people killed, leaving nearly 3 million people without power, and causing widespread flooding necessitating water rescues up the Eastern seaboard all the way from Myrtle Beach, SC to Philadelphia, CNN reported last night.
Why This Matters: Sea level rise and coastal flooding are some of today’s toughest climate challenges. While the gut instinct may be to “build that wall,” in the case of the ocean, walls and other “hardened” structures only make matters worse.
Using satellite monitoring technology and intelligence capabilities, an investigation by NBC News and Ian Urbina an author and former NY Times journalist, has uncovered massive fishing by a “dark” fleet in North Korean waters with deadly results for North Korean fishermen.
Why This Matters: China is a member of the UN Security Council that in 2017 banned fishing in North Korean waters (which China used to pay to access) as part of sanctions it imposed after North Korea’s nuclear missile tests. If it’s true (and the UN has an anonymous report corroborating China’s violations with evidence to back it up) it would be a serious breach of the UN’s security rules
We have excerpted portions of his interview below. Thank you, Eric, for speaking with ODP! ODP: There have been many studies documenting the impact that climate change is having on fish stocks. Is EDF seeing this actually play out in its fisheries work here in the U.S. and worldwide? ES: Yes. Ten years ago we […]
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