In yet another example of global warming and poor human environmental practice, a week of unusually heavy rains has devastated the oil-rich Mexican state of Tabasco. Rescue workers are struggling to come to grips with the challenge facing them. Almost the whole state is under water and there is a real danger that the oil facilities across the region would be badly affected.
President Vicente Calderon described the calamity as one of the worst catastrophes that ever hit the country. He has even cancelled an overseas tour to look after the grim situation. Despite being oil-rich the Gulf-coast region is one of the poorest in the country and the homeless people are in immediate need of fresh drinking water, food and shelter. The historic capital city of Villa Hermosa is inhabited by half a million residents and is overflowed by floods. Although Mexico has not asked for international help, yet the grim situation might demand an international aid flow.
Environmentalists are blaming deforestation as being responsible for the deadly floods. Huge cutting of trees to install new oil facilities and to meet the demands of a growing population have resulted in the erosion of the hard soil which prevents river water overflowing. But the attention at the moment should be provided to the homeless and adequate precautions should be taken to prevent the spread of water-borne diseases. The army has been ordered to look after the rescue mission.
Areas not affected by floods have turned into temporary shelters for the homeless residents. Even non-flooded highways are being used to provide shelters to the needy. Adequate measures are taken by the government to protect the vulnerable oil and gas facilities in the region. Although the government has promised to rebuild the state, yet it would take a lot of time and hard work to bring normalcy back.
Link: Associated Press