5 Things to Know ( 18 – 22 September )

This week’s “5 Things to Know” focuses on natural disasters that have been affecting different parts of the world over the past week, such as Hurricane Maria and the earthquake in Mexico. Knowing about these is essential as it helps us in taking precautions and being prepared for such disasters in the future. Apart from that, tensions between Trump and Kim Jong-un continue to increase while on the other hand, there are issues going on with Uber, the technology company, in London.

1. Climate Change leads to the hottest winter in Australia

The data that was released this month revealed that the average maximum temperatures during the winter months (June to August) were roughly 2 degrees above the average. The Climate Council has said that climate change made the “exceptionally dry and warm” winter 60 times more likely. According to them, warming has intensified and become more intense during winter in Australia. Over 260 heat and low rainfall records have been broken in Australia, specifically during this winter. As stated in the report published by CSIRO, the burning of fossil fuels is one major cause of climate change that is affecting Australia in particular. In order to cope up with this issue, the Council has called for greater actions to reduce fossil fuel emissions. The target of the government is to cut emissions by 26 to 28 percent below the levels of 2005. Even though Australia is on track to beat its 2020 Kyoto target, the government fears that this might not be able to happen.z

2. After Harvey and Irma, Hurricane Maria makes a landfall in Dominica

Another Category 5 storm, Hurricane Maria has caused widespread devastation in Dominica, according to the PM of Caribbean Islands. The National Hurricane Center has declared that the hurricane is in its path of hitting other US territories. The estimated sustained winds of Maria were expected to be 160 mph and it was moving west-northwest at a rate of 9 mph, which is anticipated to stay the same. Since the storm has made a landfall in Puerto Rico, the government has made arrangements 500 shelters that could be used to move people if their houses are devastated. Over 1300 UK troops are in the islands that were previously affected by Irma, or in locations where they’d be able to deploy rapidly. Additionally, a powerful military resilience team consisting of 42 people has also been sent to British Virgin Islands. HMS Ocean, an amphibious assault ship, is carrying 60 tonnes of aid that will be delivered to the region by the weekend.

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3. Earthquake in Mexico kills hundreds

After the powerful earthquake hit Mexico City and its surrounding states, as many as 273 people have died in Mexico City, Puebla, and Morelos. According to the US Geological Survey, the magnitude of the Earthquake was as much as 7.1. As of  19th September, there were 26 bodies found in the debris of an elementary school in the city and 30 children were missing from the school. Since the country is prone to earthquakes, earlier in this month, an earthquake had struck a similar region and had left 90 people dead. However, according to reports, the recent earthquake was over 30 times more energetic than the previous one. Military personnel and volunteers have been working on looking for people who are trapped under the rubble of the buildings that have collapsed. Moreover, Mexico is considered as a seismically active region as it sits on three tectonic plates- the North American, Cocos, and Pacific plates.

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4. Trump’s speech is like a dog bark- North Korea

Mr. Trump gave a speech to the UN earlier this week regarding the North Korean crisis and North Korean foreign minister, Ri Yong Ho, described the speech as a “barking dog”. Ri said that Trump’s dreams are absurd and do not make much sense to him and his country. During the speech to the UN General Assembly, Trump had threatened to destroy the hermit kingdom of North Korea. Speaking of Kim Jong-un, Mr Trump told the UN: “Rocket man is on a suicide mission for himself and his regime”. In order to respond to this, Mr. Ri said that he feels sorry for Trump’s aides. On the other hand, fresh humanitarian aid will be sent to the North by South Korea for the first time in two years. According to the plans made by the unification ministry in Seoul, $8m will be provided for children, pregnant ladies, and improvements in medical supplies in North Korea.

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5. Uber loses private hire licence

Transport of London (TfL) has said that Uber will not be issued a new private hire licence. It concluded that the app was not fit for holding a private hire operator licence because it lacks corporate responsibility. This could cause further implications in terms of public safety and security. Uber app is used by over 3.5 million passengers and roughly 40,000 drivers in the city of London. The license will be expired on September 30 and it has 21 days to appeal the move. The mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, declared that Uber will embark on this legal challenge against TfL. However, he also said that they will urge the court to stick with this decision as the unethical company has no place in London.

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