Palaces For The People
Thursday, October 09, 2003
Floods force 20,000 to relocate:

"In Dongming County in East China's Shandong Province, about 98,000 villagers were threatened by the flooding, more than 7,000 homes have been seriously damaged, and some 900 houses have collapsed into the water. "
Today's India Floods: Around 8,000 houses were destroyed while 40,000 have been partially damaged. - The Times of India

Tornado strikes, floods to follow


KOLKATA: The spectre of flood loomed large over several parts of West Bengal as there was no respite from the incessant rain.

Yet, there was no lull before the storm. Over 350 houses were razed to the ground and three persons seriously injured in a freak storm that struck Murshidabad on Thursday.

Accompanied by heavy rain and lasting for five minutes, it resembled a tornado though authorities refused to call it so.

The worst-affected villages were Harahari, Chhamugram and Manigram in the Sagardighi area.

The sudden storm hit the villages around 10 am, uprooting trees, destroying houses and flattening standing crops.

"We have received no information of deaths due to the storm. Authorities have rushed to the spot and relief operations have begun," said Murshidabad district magistrate Manoj Pant.

In Kolkata, officials said tidal waves in coastal areas and release of large quantities of water from the barrages in Jharkhand had submerged parts of six districts.

Besides, the tidal waves had rendered more than 70 embankments in South 24-Parganas and coastal Midnapore vulnerable.

Nearly 250,000 people were affected and 4,570 families ferried to safety.

Around 8,000 houses were destroyed while 40,000 have been partially damaged.

The weather department warned the government of another 48 hours of downpour with wind at the speed of 65-75 kmph, especially in north Bengal.

"Though the depression has weakened, further rain and consequent release of water from the barrages will submerge more areas. Already parts of some districts have been inundated," said state relief minister Hafiz Alam Sairani.

Chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee alerted all the districts and asked to arrange for evacuation and relief in vulnerable areas.

The worst-affected districts were East and West Midnapore, South and North 24-Parganas and Hooghly in south Bengal.

The whole of north Bengal experienced heavy rainfall while two buildings caved in at Darjeeling town.

Soaking rain a relief, but dusty out west [08oct03]: "Soaking rain a relief, but dusty out west
Peter Morley and Phil Bartsch
WATERFALLS may have been flowing again on the Gold Coast yesterday, but that was of little comfort for the 1100 residents of Capella in the state's central west.

While many areas in Queensland revelled in the welcome wet, the state's driest town was waiting yesterday for another road tanker to top up its dwindling water supply.
For more than two months the town, north of Emerald, has relied on water deliveries from Tieri, 35 kilometres away.
Each week the Peak Downs Shire Council ships 500,000 litres to Capella which normally draws its supply from three dams beside Capella Creek and bores.
But the creek has not run for three years, two of the dams are empty and there is reduced output from the bores which have been going since the big dry of 1993. "
India: Death toll in Orissa flood rises to 8: "India: Death toll in Orissa flood rises to 8

BHUBANESWAR: The death toll caused by incessant rains and floods in several Orissa districts has mounted to eight even as several rivers in spate showed a declining trend.
Reports of five casualties were received from Ganjam district which was lashed by heavy rains for over 96 hours triggering floods in the Rushikulya, Ghodahada, Bahuda, Bagi and Badanadi rivers.
Three deaths reported from Kendrapara district on Monday which was badly affected by the rains.

The Rushikulya, which had badly affected vast areas in the Ganjam district, was receding and was flowing at 17.98 m at Purushottampur against the danger mark of 16.83 m.
The floods had affected a population of about 3.5 lakh (350,000) people in the southern and northern districts of which 2.5 lakh (250,000) people had been hit in Chikiti, Patrapur, Sanakhemundi, Digapahandi and Seragada blocks of Ganjam. "
:: Xinhuanet - English ::: "Natural disasters claim 1,911 lives this year 2003-10-09 13:45:08

BEIJING, Oct. 9 (Xinhuanet) -- Vice-Minister of Civil Affairs Yang Yanyin said Wednesday that natural disasters this year have killed 1,911 people across the country and caused direct economic losses of 151.4 billion yuan (US$18.3 billion).
The country has encountered a series of serious natural disasters this year, with one of the most recent being the flooding of the Huaihe River during late June and early July.
That was the most serious flooding of the river since 1954, and caused great damage in East China's Jiangsu and Anhui provinces and Central China's Henan Province.
More than 50 million hectares of farmland have been affected by all sorts of natural disasters across the country, as well as the collapsing of 2.6 million houses and the evacuation of 6.3 million people. "

The world’s population in 2003 is estimated at 6.45 billion. Nearly 170 million people are being added to it annually and will increase upto 10 billion by the year 2025. The high growth ratio of population is posing a serious threat to the future prospects of human well-being. If the population continues to grow at this rate, it will perhaps be too large to be supported by the limited resources of the earth in a few decades.

Water scarcities are likely to occur sooner in regions where its per capita availability is already very low following the high population growth. The demand gets more and more serious if its per capita demand keeps growing up following changes in its consumption pattern. People dump wastes, untreated sewage and chemical discharges which pollute the sources of water like the rivers, lakes, ponds and the underground reserves. The ever-increasing demand for water has resulted in two billion people craving for this fundamental resources worldwide.

Indian Scenario

India has 2.45 per cent of the world’s land resources and 4 per cent of its fresh water resources. Twelve per cent areas of the country receive an average rainfall of less than 610 million metres (mm) annually. Only 8 per cent areas receive more than 2500 mm of water. Cherrapunji in the eastern part of Meghalaya receives 11,000 mm of rainfall while western Rajasthan receives only 100 mm. The variability of the rainfall from month to month and year to year for the same place is very high. Even low rainfall areas, especially in some parts of Gujarat and Rajasthan, are prone to occasional high intensity storms.

More than 90 per cent of the annual runoff in peninsular rivers and over 80 per cent of the annual runoff in the Himalayan rivers occurs between June and September. Many of the small rivers totally dry up during the summer. The depletion of forests has further aggravated the problem.
Supply of Recovered Wood and Paper
Is an Impetus for Recycling
Straw into Gold?
The Agriculture Fiber-based Panelboard Industry
10.6.4 Hardboard and Fiberboard Manufacturing General1 -
Fiberboard is a low-density insulation board used for housing, roofing, and office furnishings.
Hardboard is similar to fiberboard, except that hardboard is more dense than fiberboard. Hardboard is
used for applications in housing (e.g., exterior siding, garage doors, and interior door facings), furniture,
store fixtures, automotive interiors, and toys. The most frequently used raw material for production of
fiberboard products is wood chips which are first softened in a pressurized steam vessel (digester) and
then refined or pulped into wood fibers. The fibers may then be mixed with resin, formed into mats, and
pressed and/or dried to form panel products. Other materials may be added during manufacture to
improve certain properties such as stiffness, hardness, finishing properties, resistance to abrasion and
moisture, as well as to increase strength, durability and utility.
Hardboard/fiberboard manufacturing falls under the Standard Industrial Classification (SIC)
Code 2493, for “Reconstituted Wood Products”, which also includes oriented strandboard, medium
density fiberboard, and particleboard. The North American Industrial Classification System (NAICS)
Code for hardboard/fiberboard is 321219, for “Reconstituted Wood Product Manufacturing”. Process Description1 -
Hardboard products are manufactured through dry processing, wet processing, or wet/dry
processing. Fiberboard products are manufactured by wet processing. Dry processing involves dry mat
forming and pressing, while wet processing involves wet forming and wet pressing. Wet/dry processing
involves wet forming followed by dry pressing. Resin is used in wet hardboard and dry hardboard
processing. Resin is not used in wet/dry hardboard or wet fiberboard processing.
The following sections summarize dry process hardboard manufacturing, fiberboard and wet
process hardboard manufacturing, and the wet/dry hardboard manufacturing process.
ASAE Paper: "Abstract. Cost effective production of building and molded materials using agricultural crop residue can offset emissions from some open field burning, provide revenue to growers, and augment forest product use. Developing the technology has proven easier than plant financing, viable production and market entry. Meadowood Industries Inc. has improved prior technology to make decorative and structural panels from Oregon ryegrass that now approach many of the properties of wood based Oriented Strand Board (OSB). Others have perfected wheat and bagasse derived products that meet or exceed many of the properties of particleboard, and approach some of the physical and mechanical properties of Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF). Viable production methods and effective marketing are required to achieve sustainable agricultural, and realistic environmental benefits through agricultural board or panels (Ag-board) production from annual biobased materials. Effective participation is also required from regulatory agencies and non-governmental organizations (NGO) with environmental interests."

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