The Digital Conversationalist

Andrea T Edwards

#113 weekend reads – the horror in Pakistan, ignored by media

As I was going to bed last Saturday night, I caught some early footage of the floods in Pakistan. I was stunned. It is the most horrific climate event I have seen, and it gave me nightmares. Not only did we watch historic buildings and bridges get washed away, but we also watched women, children, and whole families washed away too.

It was a terrible event and the numbers lost are still rising, with expectations it’s going to get a lot worse. One positive: apparently, an early warning system through the Mosques across the country, helped many escape.

Naturally, when I woke Sunday, I couldn’t get Pakistan out of my head, and as I always do, I went looking for news. It was reported as the largest body of water on earth ever released.

The early coverage focused on it being a glacial lake melt, officially called a “glacial lake outburst.” However, this commentary quickly disappeared from media coverage and only started coming back at the end of this week.

In a Vox article titled: ‘Pakistan flooding: How melting glaciers fuelled the disaster’ – it said Pakistan is home to over 7,200 glaciers, more than anywhere outside the poles. Northern Pakistan has more than 3,000 glacial lakes, and 33 of them are “prone to hazardous glacial lake outburst flooding,” according to the United Nations.

Because this event was so big and horrific, I expected to see coverage EVERYWHERE, but when I went looking for it, crickets. This included the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and many other mainstream media. I honestly couldn’t believe it. How could THIS be ignored?

I shared an article a few months ago, talking about US media, and the decision to share only solutions-based coverage on the climate crisis, because their audience cannot cope with how depressing the news is. I KNOW it’s depressing, but we must understand what is going on, because if we do not face up to this global crisis, we will never be able to overcome it.

As I say all the time, there is no sugar coating the climate crisis my friends.

The numbers will be coming in for some time, but here’s an idea of where we are right now in Pakistan

•          1350 killed so far

•          50 million displaced (more than the 33 million being reported in most places)

•          900,000 livestock, or up to 90% of livestock dead

•          3.2 million houses destroyed and nearly 1 million damaged

•          More than 40 reservoirs breached

•          More than 220 bridges collapsed

•          90% of crops damaged, including cotton, which will impact Pakistan and the world

•          $10 billion loss to the economy

•          1/3rd of the country under water

Please note I can share sources if anyone is interested, but I gathered these from multiple places – mostly Government – attempting to capture the scale of the disaster.

In Pakistan, it is expected to take 10 years to rebuild, and that is, of course, if another glacial lake doesn’t burst, and there are 33 that could. The future is not looking very bright for the country and its people right now.

The conversation on this crisis

There are many perspectives to the conversation taking place on this story. First is that the Pakistani’s are furious with the ruling elite, and the never ending in-fighting, which is not serving the country. Imran Khan and the way he behaved when this happened, is not winning any hearts or minds either.

Corruption is a HUGE part of this story, and it’s an issue around the world in the climate fight, but in this case, it’s being blamed too, especially as so many were given approval to build homes in flood zones.

However, this angle is being picked up by deniers and used in their fight against climate action. I wonder how they can justify the collapse of a famous 150-year-old hotel, which was destroyed in seconds, and is not in a flood zone. This event impacted more than the houses built illegally, but it’s always interesting to see what deniers hang their opinion on. For me anyway.

We’ve also been hearing this week that Pakistan’s contribution to global emissions is low – like less than half a percent low – but a very clear example of how those who are not responsible for global warming will be made to suffer.

Which surely builds on the case that the polluting countries and businesses, who have profited for decades, must start to see it’s time to come together and help the Pakistani’s, and every other country being impacted. If countries and businesses can’t do this for the right reason, here’s a reason that might make sense.

We are looking at millions, if not billions, of climate refugees starting to move. Some can move within their countries, but most will be heading somewhere else. We know human migration causes massive societal disruption in the countries they want to move to. So why don’t we finally do the right thing, invest in these countries so people can stay in their homes, AND stop doing what is causing the damage in the first place – sensible?

There are countries where it is too late for the people to stay, and we must take care of them, but right now, whenever possible, if we can keep people where they are by investing in the infrastructure needed to make it possible, everyone will be better off. This means access to water, safe and dignified housing, access to food, education, medical care and more. That is the obligation now.

In Pakistan, this nightmare is not over. Millions are homeless, waiting for food, safe drinking water, and shelter. It’s so critical we move quickly, because water borne disease is now becoming rampant, and for those in the mountains, winter is coming too. The people are desperate, let’s do all we can to help them. Donation options below. I recommend a regular donation to the World Food Program if nothing else.

Friend’s content and mine

“By taking on a greater role in climate leadership, women can create wins for many areas including climate action, gender equity, food security, poverty reduction” – Praveen Gupta is writing some great content, especially on women in leadership around the environment. Please do follow him.

Inclusive Leadership with Andrew Bryant – Podcast Enjoyed listening to this podcast on self-leadership between Andy Lopata and Andrew Bryant! Nice work my friends.

And Andrew Bryant again Leaders must embrace Social Collaboration for the Future of Work  something I’ve been talking about for a very long time. This is a critical skill in the world today and leaders need to focus on mastering it.

A blog I published, after experiencing a breakthrough with my teenage boys on getting their agreement to reduce meat. Thought it worth sharing for others struggling here How to get your family committed to reducing meat consumption.

Donation time

If everyone gave #just10percent of their time, talent, money or voice, we’ll change the world. Can you donate? Make it a regular donation to the World Food Programme. Or donate to the UN Refugee Program, Medicine Sans Frontier, PowerOf , , Soi Dog Foundation.  It’s a time for giving and taking care of each other.

Content to read

And here’s the content I’ve been reading or watching this last week. Scan the headlines, read the ones that jump out at you, read or watch them all. Knowledge is power, and global knowledge is even more powerful.

Pakistan floods

Almost 1,000 killed as flooding devastates Pakistan

ArcGIS Web Application – map of Pakistan and where it’s impacted

Historic Pakistan floods leave thousands homeless and almost €100 billion of damage

How melting glaciers fueled Pakistan’s fatal floods

Pakistan floods could cost 45% of cotton crop

Pakistan floods are ‘a monsoon on steroids’, warns UN chief

Pakistan floods: Helicopter lifts stranded boy

Pakistan Flood Death Toll Passes 1,000 in ‘Climate Catastrophe’

Pakistan floods: Appeals for aid as 119 more die in a day

Pakistan floods death toll passes 1,000, say officials

Pakistan floods: Desperation and displacement in Sindh province

Pakistan declares floods a ‘climate catastrophe’ as death toll tops 1,000

Climate crisis

Capitalism Is Destroying Us – The New Climate Report

Deeply Dark Times Ahead – be positive

The End of the Age of Abundance (and the Beginning of the Age of Scarcity)

Where We’ll End Up Living as the Planet Burns

Death toll from floods in Afghanistan rises above 180 – Taliban

Extreme China heatwave could lead to global chaos and food shortages

South African court bans offshore oil and gas exploration by Shell

Bike protest takes over German motorway

‘We’re going to pay in a big way’: a shocking new book on the climate crisis | Books | The Guardian

‘Powder kegs waiting for a spark’: rising costs threaten global unrest, say risk analysts

China’s supply chain is melting in extreme heat. Whose will be next?

Antarctica’s “Doomsday” Glacier: Its Collapse Could Trigger Global Floods and Swallow Islands

At last, the Tories prove that Brexit has polluted the UK

Scientists’ warning to humanity on tree extinctions

Emily Townsend and Alex Hillman publicly quit their jobs for climate change. Here’s what happened next

Inequality can double the energy required to secure universal decent living

Much of The Great Pacific Garbage Patch’s Plastic Comes From These 5 Countries tks Josh O’Neill


Oil industry condemns first US fee on greenhouse gases

Energy war as West caps Russian oil price, Moscow keeps gas pipe shut

Backyard ‘frog hotels’ hoped to help species recover from East Gippsland bushfires

Climate change is biggest threat to earth, international poll finds

The role of marine biodiversity in the regulation of our climate – A discussion Document

Switzerland’s vanishing glaciers threaten Europe’s water supply

A prolonged and record heat wave builds over the West this week

Analysis: BlackRock too green for Texas; rest of Wall Street okay – for now

Antarctica’s melting ice spells trouble on sea rise

Antarctic Glaciers Are Melting Away at the Fastest Rate in 5,500 Years

US fossil fuel firm sues insurer for refusing to cover climate lawsuit

Americans experience a false social reality by underestimating popular climate policy support by nearly half

Zimov, S. A., Schuur, E. A. G. & Chapin, F. S. Permafrost and the global carbon budget. Science 312, 1612–1613 (2006).

Study finds climate change is waking bumblebees earlier from winter hibernation, putting the species at risk

Rewetting dried wetlands could stop 100 billion tons of CO2 emissions

Opinion: Climate transition must happen – it’s up to us whether by design or by disaster

Greenland ice sheet climate disequilibrium and committed sea-level rise

Drought and Worsening Fertilizer Crisis Risk More Food Inflation

I’m thrilled to announce why scientists should consider participating in civil disobedience to promote climate action.

The 10 Financial Actors Who Stand in the Way of Slowing Climate Change

Spain’s olive oil producers devastated by worst ever drought

The climate crisis is a hunger crisis

Australians warned the price of groceries is about to soar even more as farmers issue an urgent food supply warning – here’s how much your weekly shop will cost you

Australia’s east coast set for third straight La Niña season, experts predict

England’s housing strategy would blow entire carbon budget, says study

How Bill Gates-Backed Republic Services Turns Trash Into Big Cash

Warming Trends: Bill Nye’s New Focus on Climate Change, Bottled Water as a Social Lens and the Coming End of Blacktop

Let’s Stop Trying to Save Industrial Civilisation

Drought, pollution, floods: Avon in Devon tells story of UK rivers in distress

Friday essay: ‘I feel my heart breaking today’ – a climate scientist’s path through grief towards hope

UN: Record 345 million people ‘marching to the brink of starvation’

Climate change: Avocados and exotic plants grow in hot UK summer

Bill Nye Shares Thoughts On ‘Painfully’ Accurate ‘Don’t Look Up’

‘Time has run out’: UN fails to reach agreement to protect marine life

Revealed: the 20 firms behind a third of all carbon emissions

India’s dietary guidelines have a relatively lower carbon footprint: study

As France Swelters, Private Jets Come Under Attack


Physicists predict Earth will become a chaotic world, with dire consequences

Climate Thinkers: John Schellnhuber

Global politics

The Speech No President Should Have to Give

Trump investigation: Empty folders marked classified found at Mar-a-Lago

Gun jams as it is pointed at Argentina’s vice-president

Joe Biden says Trump ideology threatens US democracy

Witness to the Massacre in Mariupol

Mary Peltola: First Alaskan Native elected to Congress as Sarah Palin loses

In the east, Ukraine braces to launch counter-attack

A letter from a Russian friend

Mikhail Gorbachev, the last leader of the Soviet Union

Fear of Fascism

Iraq: At least 23 dead amid fighting after Moqtada al-Sadr quits

How a 92-year-old cleric silently halted Iraq’s slide back into war

‘I was gobsmacked when he became prime minister’

Australia: Scott Morrison saga casts scrutiny on Queen’s representative

We Knew the Justice Department Case Was Righteous. This Affidavit Confirms It.

What a Pizza Hut ad says about Gorbachev – and Russia

Business and technology

How McKinsey Destroyed the Middle Class

World Bank warns of recession and stagflation

Markets and the Future of the Circular Economy

A quarter of retirees will die with their super wealth intact

Hiring Slows For Second Straight Month As Companies Digest ‘Conflicting’ Economic Data, ADP Reveals In Latest Jobs Report

Starbucks Is Rethinking Almost Everything, Including How to Make Frappuccinos

Morgan Stanley strategist points to a new canary in the coal mine for a looming recession

The $100 Trillion Global Economy in One Chart

Analysis: Pain of breaking inflation will reverberate around the globe

The Twitter Whistleblower Needs You to Trust Him

The 2022 economy is like a 4-engine airplane with only one that works—and most experts want to turn it off, top economist says

Older Entrepreneurs Outperform Younger Founders—Shattering Ageism

Social issues and humanity

Uyghurs: China may have committed crimes against humanity in Xinjiang – UN

Serena’s impact to be felt long after retirement

Singapore swimmer Joseph Schooling confesses to consuming cannabis overseas: MINDEF

Helen Hunt: ‘There were a couple of years I was spooked – I just became very boring’

On the anniversary of Hurricane Katrina (8/29), I’m reminded of not only the destruction of my home and community, but also that the experience radicalized me. I was 17 at the time.

Barbara Ehrenreich Is Not an Optimist, but She Has Hope for the Future

The Economist Asks: How can mental health-care crises be solved? Podcast

One in five UK children do not own any books of their own

Shivamurthy Murugha Sharanaru: Lingayat leader arrested for allegedly raping minors

Where Our Strength Comes from and What It Means to Be Strong

India’s top court declares same-sex couples entitled to social benefits, deserve legal protections

Episode 204: Healing From Betrayal with Debi Silber Podcast

Women with hijab found to face bias in Egypt

Fab abs, Nicole Kidman. But this frantic effort to look half your age is frankly demeaning

Free uni degrees for Victorian nurses and midwives to boost staffing across health system

Why very smart people are happiest alone

Charlbi Dean: Tributes to film and TV ‘star-in-the-making’ after death at 32

Passion, humour, history

Eighth century pagan temple to Old Norse gods unearthed in Norway

A Young Japanese Photographer’s View of Harlem in the Nineties

Quentin Tarantino Finally Responds to Once Upon a Time in Hollywood’s Bruce Lee Controversy

Let me know what jumped out at you? Or share with me what you’re reading? I love that!



Environment education

Three environment resources to help navigate this challenging territory. 1. Knowledge, constantly updating. 2. Individual action and awareness, so we do our part. 3. Resources for those struggling with eco-anxiety. Please share with your community.

Uncommon Courage: an invitation

Uncommon Courage is an invitation to be your courageous best self every day. It’s also an antidote to the overwhelm, fear, and rage rolling around the world. But it’s more than a book; it’s an invitation to join an inclusive community that wants to better understand humanities challenges – both global and personal – in order to take courageous action and create a better world for everyone. If Covid19 has given us the time and space to reflect, Uncommon Courage gives us the nudge we need to create lasting change.

You can buy it on AmazonApple BooksBarnes & Noble, Book DepositoryBooktopia, SmashwordsKobo, Gardners, Odilo, Indie Bound, BookShop by BookTrib and Scribd.

Better yet, order it from your local bookstore, so you can #SupportLocal.

You can read the reviews, including a new five-star review on Book Commentary, another five-star review on ReaderViews, a review on BookTrib, and three more on Booklife, another on Book Commentary and Blue Ink Reviews. I’m also collating reviews on my Website too. Have a look and grateful to everyone who has written or recorded one.

Come and join the conversation in my new Facebook Group Uncommon Courage.

Uncommon Courage, the podcast – Apple, Spotify and everywhere podcasts are published.

The Know Show

Check out The Know Show. It’s a fortnightly wrap up of the news!

18 Steps to an All-Star LinkedIn Profile (2022 edition) 

Listed by Book Authority in the 100 Best LinkedIn Books of All Time and 22 Best New LinkedIn eBooks To Read In 2021 and 2022 categories. Grab it today if you want to take your professional presence to the next level! When it comes to LinkedIn, it really is time to ask — can you really afford not to have this book in the hands of every employee?

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