Scientists have issued a new warning to the world’s coastal megacities that the threat from subsiding land is a more immediate problem than rising sea levels caused by global warming.
A new paper from the Deltares Research Institute in the Netherlands published in April identified regions of the globe where the ground level is falling 10 times faster than water levels are rising - with human activity often to blame.
In Jakarta, Indonesia’s largest city, the population has grown from around half a million in the 1930s to just under 10 million today, with heavily populated areas dropping by as much as six and a half feet as groundwater is pumped up from the Earth to drink.
The same practice led to Tokyo’s ground level falling by two meters before new restrictions were introduced, and in Venice, this sort of extraction has only compounded the effects of natural subsidence caused by long-term geological processes.
"Growing Western demand for altruistic vacations is feeding the white-savior industrial complex. Volunteerism presents an escape, a rare encounter with an authenticity sorely missed, hardship palpably and physically felt – for a small price."
I have heard from people working long term with schools and orphanages the short term volunteer culture causes more harm than good.Seth Dixon sums this article up:
As stated in this article, "Under this program, well-to-do tourists sign up to build schools, clean and restore riverbanks, ring birds and act as caregivers to AIDS orphans for a few weeks. This led to the creation of a profitable industry catering to volunteer tourists. The orphans’ conditions are effectively transformed into a boutique package in which 'saving' them yields profits from tourists. The foreigners’ ability to pay for the privilege of volunteering crowds out local workers." For a satirical look at this type of tourism, the Onion absolutely delivers.
Seven More Dirty Little Secrets of the Travel Industry Huffington Post The travel industry seems transparent these days—real people will give you the scoop on your hotel on TripAdvisor, you can compare fares yourself with flight-search websites,...
Tracey M Benson's insight:
Ever noticed when you are comparing prices on airfares that as you look around the web, the cost goes up - here are some clues about why...
In 2011 social media marketing continued to make its impact. Google+ was launched (with an investment of over $500 million in development costs), Twitter became embedded in the new Apple iPhone 4s and Blogging didn't die.
Tracey M Benson's insight:
Some cool infographics about social media marketing.
People love to learn by examining visual representations of data. That's been proven time and time again by the popularity of both infographics and Pinterest. So what if you could make your own infographics?
"More Americans came into contact with maps during World War II than in any previous moment in American history. From the elaborate and innovative inserts in the National Geographic to the schematic and tactical pictures in newspapers, maps were everywhere. On September 1, 1939, the Nazis invaded Poland, and by the end of the day a map of Europe could not be bought anywhere in the United States. In fact, Rand McNally reported selling more maps and atlases of the European theaters in the first two weeks of September than in all the years since the armistice of 1918. Two years later, the attack on Pearl Harbor again sparked a demand for maps."
"Unfortunately, most world political maps aren't telling you the whole story. The idea that the earth's land is cleanly divvied up into nation-states - one country for each of the world's peoples - is more an imaginative ideal than a reality. Read on to learn about five ways your map is lying to you about borders, territories, and even the roster of the world's countries."
"A remarkable and unusual sort of civil disobedience has been triggered in Marivan, a city in the Kurdistan Province of Iran. On April 15, an Iranian court in the city forced a male convict to wear traditional Kurdish women’s clothes in public, perceiving it as a humiliating punishment. Kurdish feminists of the Marivan Women’s Community protested against this misogynistic decision on the streets of Marivan in red traditional clothes, similar to the Kurdish bride robe that the convicts had to wear, and they were confronted by violent security forces.
Then, in solidarity with the women, Kurdish men took an extraordinary initiative by dressing as Kurdish women and posting their photos on social media."
"Sufi poetry has been largely misunderstood by modern pop culture. The misuse of Sufi poetry is symptomatic of modern culture's combination of materialism with self-spirituality. The theme that runs through the New Age movement is about experiencing the 'Self' because it is the way to experience the 'God' or 'Goddess' within. As noted by Peter Pels in his 1998 article 'Religion, Consumerism and the Modernity of the New Age', the New Age emphasis on self-spirituality is rooted in late nineteenth- or early twentieth-century occultism."
'Nomadic Retirees' Sell Home to Travel the World NBCNews.com Carefree travel has long been the province of backpackers, 20-somethings and other free spirits without mortgages, jobs and other worldly concerns.
Ten of the world's great train journeys: readers' travel tips. From scenic French trips to North America epics, Guardian readers share tips for train journeys that are out of this world • To add a tip for next week and be in with a ...
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