CC:When will Trump see the light? By Louis Odion, FNGE

President Donald Trump: The man and his looks?

From the apocalyptic Hurricane Harvey in Texas to lately the hellish wildfire in Los Angeles, these are surely agonizing moments for the United States. In a rather dazzlingly
rapid succession, the two natural disasters, the worst in half a century, have
forced America’s second and fourth
largest cities to their knees, exacting heavy human toll and incalculable
material loss.

In Texas, apart from 47 deaths, material damage wrought by Hurricane Harvey is estimated at
whopping $150b. Relief workers have
documented at least 36,000 rescue efforts since the first wave on August 25.

Hurricane Harvey in Data

More than one million are displaced, with 200,000 homes wrecked on a
path of destruction stretching almost 500 kilometers.

Ex-President Barrack Obama…..Donald Trump wants his policies slighted


In scale, Hurricane Harvey obviously dwarfs earlier Katrina (2006) and Sandy
Texas‘ river of misery had barely receded when Los Angeles began to blaze in
the wildfire reminiscent of the biblical prophecy of Armageddon. So much that the authorities had to issue evacuation
order to residents of no fewer than 500 homes, followed by a formal declaration
of state of emergency by the Governor of California,
Edmund Brown Jr.

Hurricane Harvey in Action

At this writing yesterday, another
Hurricane named Irma was fast
approaching the U.S. shores with residents of Florida bracing for another bout of nightmares. 
A pity, despite all the
earth-shaking inventions and innovations, despite all the extending of the
frontiers of knowledge through human intelligence, the United States, like other nations of the world, remains
vulnerable to the rampaging forces of nature. 

Hurricane Katrina in Data

While the spirit of shared humanity
obliges the rest of the world to identify with the United States in this trying hour, we can only hope that these
natural disasters will serve as a wake-up call on President Donald Trump on the grim reality of climate change. Ever
so eccentric in thoughts and deeds, the American
leader is one of a small tribe who still live in denial of its existence in
what bears a faint resemblance of the natural atrophy evoked in William Golding’s Lord of the

Hurricane Katrina in Action

By the accident of history, the
little ones find themselves in a virgin island imagined by Golding. Unable to rise above their cognitive limitations and be
united in the pursuit of things that bind them, the brats soon turn the
paradisal bequest into a cauldron of horror and self-immolation. Charlatanism trumps reason. The pristine
beach gets smeared by blood.

This is the City of Los Angeles


But against the ruins of Texas and Los Angeles in the past few days, only Trump and other climate change deniers will perhaps still need
rocket-scientists to help them connect the dots. While the Los Angeles fire tagged “La Tuna” probably erupted
with a spark on the northern edge, powerful erratic winds resulting from a
violated ecology helped fuel its spread across breath-taking 2,023 hectares,
with thick smoke billowing skyward, thereby poisoning the air around
most parts of the city as well as the suburbs.

Los Angeles fires wails in action


Of course, the raging inferno only
adds to the global warming which has been responsible for the irreversible
melting of the icebergs over the years, resulting in the rise in water levels.
So, the volume of rainfall has risen globally. So are tsunamis and hurricanes.
When it rains, existing waterways are increasingly unable to discharge into the
rivers and the oceans as seamlessly as was the case decades ago. 

Hurricane Sandy in Data

Last month in Sierra Leone, flash floods similarly sacked several communities
resulting in at least 600 deaths, with many still missing. To say nothing of
massive destruction of property.

Hurricane Sandy in Action

Back home, Benue river also overflowed last weekend leading to many
deaths, displacement of tens of thousands and destruction of property worth
hundreds of million of naira.

Author, Louis Odion FNGE, Silently wonders for Donald Trump’s political ambiguity

Sadly, whereas Nigeria was quick to rush materials and troops to Freetown to assist in relief efforts, we
are yet to see similar vigor and depth in the federal response to the Benue disaster in the past few days with
victims left to waddle in neck-deep flood and vast number of houses immersed up
to lintel level.

A Scene from Benue Flood


According to experts, the worst may
not be over yet for Benue. If the
neighboring Cameroun, whose soccer
World Cup dream was recently decimated by Super Eagles in a 4.0 massacre,
decided to release water from the already overflowing Lagbo Dam, then more misery lays ahead for beleaguered Benue communities. You can never tell
where national bitterness aroused by the humiliation suffered on the soccer
pitch could lead in the times ahead. 

President of Cameroon, Paul Biya (Can Nigeria have a feel of ‘Ajekun Iya’ from him?)

Flooded Benue, in turn, raises the specter of famine for the nation in the
next harvest season. With farmlands now completely submerged, our “food
basket” is in great danger indeed.
In sub-Saharan Africa, worsening desertification is triggering the
migration of pastoralists to seek greener pasture for their herds in a manner
never seen in history. The result has been the rise of the buccaneering herder
quick to pull the AK-47 trigger against the subsistence farmer unwilling to
surrender their farmland to ravenous herds of cattle. 

An AK-47 wielding Cow Herdsman in one of Nigeria’s suburbs

Taken together, there has,
therefore, been a clarion call on mankind to shake off its lethargy
and rise to the new existential threat by evolving more creative ways to heal
and preserve the environment in a sustainable way. It is an advocacy some of us
have been involved in our own modest way over the years. Being the center of
greatest industrial activities in the universe and ipso facto the “greatest polluter”, the U.S. has of course come under significant
pressure to lead the crusade to preserve planet earth for the unborn

A child on dirty waters of Sierra Leone’s flood

But ever so quick to theorize
without evidence or research, President
once described the CC advocacy as a modern-day fraud. He tweeted: “The concept of global warming was
created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing
Since stepping into the White House in January, Trump has sought to reverse the gains
recorded under previous administrations against climate change, even as he
frenetically pursues policies to foreclose any fresh advance. 

A flood scene in Sierra Leone

He began by appointing as
new head of US environment protection agency a co-denier, Scott Pruit, former Oklahoma Attorney General. Next, he axed
the agency’s budget from $8.1b to $5.7b. Thereafter came an executive order
freezing the effort of the Barak Obama
administration to limit the highly polluting coal industry under the Clean Power Plan, leaving the old plants

Scott Pruit, Trump’s new man at EPA

Then came another executive order to
expand offshore oil drilling and release formerly protected federal land to be
explored for private interest. His predecessor, Obama, had tried to ban offshore drilling permanently, citing a
1953 law.
Perhaps the unkindest cut of all was
an order disabling Obama’s policy
protecting waterways and wetlands which normally provide detention points for
flood water in emergency situations. 
In case he stills harbors doubt, we
can only hope this ugly harvest of natural disasters in the U.S. lately will
disabuse Trump’s mind on the harsh
reality of climate change and nudge him to mend his ways. 


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