News Review - 21 Feb 2020
Drought

Climate change is in the news… climate change is real… God uses climate to bless His people – and to curse those who will not obey… and the main weapon He uses is…

Drought!

“Natural disasters usually announce their arrival: Hurricanes uproot trees, tornadoes roar, and wildfires wipe out entire landscapes. These large, sudden events generate destruction on impact — and then they’re gone.

Drought is different.

It doesn’t make a big entrance — the start of a drought might even be mistaken for a bit of a dry spell — and its impact builds over time. But while often described as a ‘creeping disaster,’ drought leaves a trail of destruction as dangerous and deadly as any other extreme weather event.

In fact, drought has affected more people around the world in the past four decades than any other type of natural disaster.

Drought is characterized by a lack of precipitation — such as rain, snow, or sleet — for a protracted period of time, resulting in a water shortage. Developing nations are particularly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, including drought. More than 80 percent of drought-induced economic damage and loss suffered by developing nations from 2005 to 2015 was related to livestock, crops, and fisheries. The economic toll of some $29 billion tells only part of the story. Drought in developing nations is notorious for creating water and food insecurity and exacerbating pre-existing problems such as famine and civil unrest. It can also contribute to mass migration, resulting in the displacement of entire populations.

In the United States, drought is the second-most costly form of natural disaster (behind hurricanes), exacting an average toll of $9.6 billion in damage and loss per event. Meanwhile, some level of drought often has some part of the country in its grip. During the historic dry spell of 2012 (the nation’s most extensive since the 1930s), as much as two-thirds of the country was affected by drought at its peak. US droughts can be persistent as well. From 2012 to 2016, scant rainfall and record-breaking heat in California created what is estimated to have been the state’s worst drought in 1,200 years.

These dry spells take a major toll on the economy, with the drought and extreme heat of 2012 alone resulting in an estimated $17 billion in crop losses. As in developing nations, they can create conditions of water insecurity and higher food prices. Drought can also lead to regionally specific problems. In California, for example, a large number of native fish populations that depend on the San Francisco Bay–Delta Estuary — from the bellwether delta smelt to the iconic Chinook salmon — have suffered sharp declines due to reduced river flows during the recent historic drought.” ( nrdc.org)

Only A Third Of The World’s Great Rivers Remain Free Flowing, Analysis Finds

“Separate research in Britain, which included the effects of smaller infrastructure such as weirs, fords and culverts, suggests that 97% of the nation’s river network has been interrupted by human-built structures.

‘Free-flowing rivers are important for humans and the environment alike, yet economic development around the world is making them increasingly rare,’ said Grill. ‘Two billion people take water from rivers for drinking, so it is important they remain a clean source.’

Annually, 12 million tonnes of fish are caught from rivers, providing a vital source of food for hundreds of millions of people, but 500 million people are living on deltas that are sinking as dams starve them of sediments.

The study estimates that there are about 60,000 large dams worldwide and 3,700 in planning or construction, in addition to millions of smaller dams.

Many rivers are also hemmed in by banks built by people to prevent flooding in urban areas, although flood waters can end up displaced downstream. These banks also stop natural replenishment of nutrients in soil on flood plains.” ( theguardian.com)

Not All Rivers Reach The Sea

“For six million years, the Colorado River ran its course from its soaring origins in the Rockies to a once-teeming two-million-acre delta, finally emptying 14 million acre-feet of fresh water into the Sea of Cortez. But now, a multitude of straws are drinking from the river, Mr McBride notes in his documentary.

‘The Colorado River delta is a testament of what happens when we ask too much of a limited resource,’ he said. ‘It disappears.’

Indeed, the Colorado River has not reached the sea since 1998 but ends rather in a cracked and desolate expanse of barren mud flats and abandoned boats — a “dry river cemetery,” as Mr McBride puts it.

Referred to as the Nile of North America, the Colorado River is the arid West’s lifeline. It provides water to more than 30 million Americans, including people in cities like Phoenix, Denver and Los Angeles. Over 100 dams and thousands of miles of canals divert the river to nearly every farm, industry and city within a 250-mile radius of its banks. It is one of the most diverted and dammed rivers in the world.

Mr McBride and Mr Waterman hope that their project will raise awareness about the river’s end-of-the-line fate. In the course of the trip, they were surprised to learn that people ranging from water engineers to kayakers to politicians to fishermen had no idea that the Colorado River runs dry farther south.

Mr McBride noted that not many people live in the delta region, and that those who do are mostly poor Mexican farmers. ‘If the river ended in San Diego, I guarantee it wouldn’t run dry,’ he said.” ( blogs.nytimes.com)

Down The Mississippi To The Gulf Of Mexico…

Some rivers that do reach the sea cause destruction!

“Beneath its sparkling waters off the Louisiana coast, part of the Gulf of Mexico is dying. Nutrients washed into the gulf by the Mississippi River have promoted excessive algae growth, sucking the oxygen out of the water over an area roughly the size of New Jersey and killing off or driving away many plants and animals. The growth of this so-called ‘dead zone’ threatens the future of some Gulf Coast fisheries. Dr Wayne Skaggs believes the best way to reverse the trend is to turn down the spigot of nutrients flowing down the Mississippi.” ( ncsu.edu)

What Happens To The US Midwest When The Water’s Gone?

The Ogallala aquifer turned the region into America’s breadbasket. Now it, and a way of life, are being drained away.

America’s Breadbasket Faces Dire Water Crisis

“The Ogallala Aquifer spreads across eight states, from Texas to South Dakota, covering 111.8 million acres and 175,000 square miles. It’s the fountain of life not only for much of the Texas Panhandle, but also for the entire American Breadbasket of the Great Plains, a highly-sophisticated, amazingly-productive agricultural region that literally helps feed the world.

This catastrophic depletion is primarily man-made. By the early eighties, automated center-pivot irrigation devices were in wide use – those familiar spidery-armed wings processing in a circle atop wheeled tripods. This super-sized sprinkler system allowed farmers to water crops more regularly and effectively, which both significantly increased crop yields and precipitously drained the Ogallala.

Compounding the drawdown has been the nature of the Ogallala itself. Created 10 million years ago, this buried fossil water is – in many places — not recharged by precipitation or surface water.

When it’s gone, it’s gone for centuries.

If the American Breadbasket cannot help supply ever-growing food demands, billions could starve.( nbcnews.com)

Climate Change

Climate Change is big news today, but it’s been around from the beginning. Perhaps the most dramatic episode of climate change occurred at creation! The whole earth was a disaster zone. Surrounded by dark clouds, it was a total wasteland! Along with creation came the perfect climate – so that all life could exist.

“And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good.” (Genesis 1:31)

The Key To A Perfect Climate

If ye walk in my statutes, and keep my commandments, and do them; Then I will give you rain in due season , and the land shall yield her increase, and the trees of the field shall yield their fruit.

And your threshing shall reach unto the vintage, and the vintage shall reach unto the sowing time: and ye shall eat your bread to the full, and dwell in your land safely.

And I will give peace in the land, and ye shall lie down, and none shall make you afraid: and I will rid evil beasts out of the land, neither shall the sword go through your land.” (Leviticus 26:3-6)

The Punishment For Disobedience - Climate Change!

Drought is the perfect weapon. It takes time to bite, giving people time to repent! Note the use of “blasting and mildew”. Blasting is a result of drought, whilst mildew occurs after a flood.

“The LORD shall make the pestilence cleave unto thee, until he have consumed thee from off the land, whither thou goest to possess it.

The LORD shall smite thee with a consumption, and with a fever, and with an inflammation, and with an extreme burning, and with the sword, and with blasting, and with mildew; and they shall pursue thee until thou perish.

And thy heaven that is over thy head shall be brass, and the earth that is under thee shall be iron.” (Deuteronomy 28:21-23)

End Time Scenario

“And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.

For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be FAMINES, and PESTILENCES, and earthquakes, [including hurricanes and tornadoes, violent storms and flooding…] in divers places.

All these are the beginning of sorrows.” (Matthew 24:6-8:6)

“Famines, and pestilences” as the by-products of war, look at the Horn of Africa right now! Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, and Somalia are examples. What little they have been able to grow in a war zone, the locusts are eating – right now! This effects 27 million people…

“Earthquakes” – seismos – on the earth. In the atmosphere, a tornado or hurricane - raging storms as in the UK this last week with winds approaching hurricane force and serious flooding – the financial cost is going to be huge.

Good News!

Mankind CAN Affect Climate Change!

Be glad then, ye children of Zion, and rejoice in the LORD your God: for he hath given you the former rain moderately, and he will cause to come down for you the rain, the former rain, and the latter rain in the first month.” (Joel 2:23)

Drought – The Perfect Weapon

Drought can often be a mixture - some have rain while others don’t! This could promote violence - fighting over water!

“And also I have withholden the rain from you, when there were yet three months to the harvest: and I caused it to rain upon one city, and caused it not to rain upon another city: one piece was rained upon, and the piece whereupon it rained not withered.” (Amos 4:7)

“Continuing in [Ezekiel] chapter 5:11-13, speaking of the American and British peoples, ‘Wherefore, as I live, saith the Lord Eternal; … A third part of thee shall die with the pestilence, and with famine shall they be consumed in the midst of thee: and a third part shall fall by the sword (the sword of nuclear destruction in our day) round about thee; and I will scatter a third part into all the winds… Thus shall mine anger be accomplished, and I will cause MY FURY to rest upon them…” ( Pastor General’s Report – September 5, 1979)

Drought – Far More Effective Than Guns…

In the millennium, the climate will be perfect – except for those who will not obey God!

“And it shall be, that whoso will not come up of all the families of the earth unto Jerusalem to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, even upon them shall be no rain.” (Zechariah 14:17)

The Blessing In The Millennium – A Perfect Climate

Look what God promises:

“Fear not, thou worm Jacob, and ye men of Israel; I will help thee, saith the Eternal, and thy redeemer, the Holy One of Israel.

Behold, I will make thee a new sharp threshing instrument having teeth: thou shalt thresh the mountains, and beat them small, and shalt make the hills as chaff. Thou shalt fan them, and the wind shall carry them away, and the whirlwind shall scatter them: and thou shalt rejoice in the Eternal, and shalt glory in the Holy One of Israel. When the poor and needy seek water, and there is none, and their tongue faileth for thirst, I the Eternal will hear them, I the God of Israel will not forsake them.

I will open rivers in high places, and fountains [artesian wells] in the midst of the valleys: I will make the wilderness a pool of water, and the dry land springs of water. I will plant in the wilderness the cedar, the shittah [acacia] tree, and the myrtle and the oil tree; I will set in the desert the fir tree, and the pine, and the box tree [cypress] together: That they may see, and know, and consider, and understand together, that the hand of the Eternal hath done this, and the Holy One of Israel hath created it.(Isaiah 41:14-20)

Pure Water - Fertile Deserts

“Can you imagine such a fabulous scene? Deserts becoming green, fertile, garden lands of trees, shrubs, bubbling springs and brooks; mountains brought low, and made inhabitable. Notice how God describes these conditions in many parts of the Bible.

‘Then shall the lame man leap as an hart, and the tongue of the dumb sing: for in the wilderness shall waters break out, and streams in the desert. And the parched ground shall become a pool, and the thirsty land springs of water: in the habitation of dragons [jackals], where each lay, shall be grass with reeds and rushes.’ (Isaiah 35:6-7)” ( Tomorrow: What It Will Be Like)