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Ear to the Ground

Landslides Hit Indonesia on Anniversary of Tsunami

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Posted on Dec 26, 2007
indonesia
AP photo

Rescue workers search for people caught in a landslide in the Tawangmangu area of central Java on Wednesday.

A combination of rainfall and rising tides, as well as the possible effects of deforestation, sparked landslides that buried homes and killed at least 80 people in central Indonesia on Wednesday.  Thousands were forced to evacuate the Java region, and officials say the death toll may still rise. The devastation came on the third anniversary of the Asian tsunami that killed nearly a quarter of a million people in 2004.


BBC:

Television pictures showed people wading through chest-high water, clutching their belongings above their heads.

Landslides struck several areas, including the Tawangmangu area of Central Java, in Karanganyar district, and further south in Wonogiri.

The worst incident was reportedly in Karanganyar, where people were at a dinner celebrating the clean-up of a mud-covered home.

Rescue chief Eko Prayitno told Associated Press news agency: “They were having dinner together when they were hit by another landslide. At least 61 people were buried.”

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By Douglas Chalmers, December 27, 2007 at 7:53 am Link to this comment

BBC: “Heru, head of the local disaster coordination agency, told Reuters deforestation was probably not to blame in this incident. “The forest in the area is thick,” he said….. in Karanganyar, where people were at a dinner celebrating the clean-up of a mud-covered home…. “They were having dinner together when they were hit by another landslide…”

I guess that they just didn’t want to believe that another landslide could occur. Deep volcanic soil, steep slopes, slash + burn agriculture = inevitable consequences.

People being forced into riskly practices because of economic circumstances and land being taken up for bio-fuels and cash crops such as palm oil and coconuts and sugarcane doesn’t help.

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By Margaret Currey, December 26, 2007 at 1:21 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Deforestation is happening in the United States a portion of land a college let clear cutting the result is when the rains come the people further down get the mudslides, I wonder who pays the people for the damage, maybe in the United States there is help, but in Indonesia where the poor just lose the country has two economies the rich who do what they want and the poor who endure.

This deforstation is contributing to the global warming and this world has reached critical mass.

Growing corn for fuel will not do it, you have to use water and furtlizer and the furtlizer seeks the lowest level so it ends up in the Mississippi River which then empties into the Gulf of Mexico which is part of the Atlantic Ocean, and then the fish die, the coral shores around Fla. and the Carbiean die off and soon there will be no fish to eat, no seafood to enjoy, all at the convience of those who must drive even if there is other ways of transportation, if people would just drive when they had to the air quality would get better, but things will only happen when the air is so fouled up that people will die from breating the posionous air and babies start dying from the bad air quality, then the tipping point might have tipped.

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