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How Indonesia’s Fires Are Choking the World…and more

How Indonesia’s Fires Are Choking the World

smoke

More than 100,000 land and forest fires in Indonesia have engulfed the country in a hazardous smoke, leading to an environmental and public-health crisis that has affected every element of society in this sprawling Southeast Asian nation. Tens of thousands of people have been declared victims of respiratory conditions because of the smoke and the fires alone are now emitting as much carbon dioxide on any given day as emitted by the entire U.S. economy in the same time period. Widespread fires are nothing new in Indonesia, where farmers regularly burn forests and peatlands to make way to produce palm oil, a key ingredient in a variety of food and consumer products, but experts say the scale of the damage is worse than it has been in a decade. This week Indonesian President Joko Widodo cut short his trip to the U.S. to deal…

 

Insurers’ profit down $1 billion as catastrophes take toll

Australian insurers are hoping for a more benign season in 2016 and for mitigation work to ease losses, after five catastrophes wiped more than $1 billion of profit from the industry last financial year. Research from KPMG showed natural disasters such as Cyclone Marcia and the Sydney hailstorm in August culled $1.15 billion in profit from insurers’ bottom lines during the last financial year. The industry, which is dominated by players such as Insurance Australia Group, Suncorp Group and QBE Insurance Group, posted a combined insurance profit of $3.73 billion – down from $4.89 billion in 2014. “Five catastrophe events certainly dramatically impacted the industry’s profits. They cost $3.6 billion, which is pretty much the equivalent to the net profits [of Australian insurers],” Scott Guse, partner at KPMG, said…

 

Chinchilla battered as hailstorm strikes Queensland’s Darling Downs

A MASSIVE clean-up is underway after a freak hailstorm lashed the regional Queensland township of Chinchilla yesterday afternoon. Hail as large as golf balls bore down on the town, in the state’s Darling Downs region, causing damage that is believed to run into the millions. The State Emergency Service was inundated with more than 120 calls for help as roofs collapsed, windows were smashed and cars were pommeled with hailstones. Six patients were evacuated as windows were smashed at a local hospital, causing it to be inundated with water…

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This entry was posted on 30/10/2015 by in Uncategorized and tagged , , .

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