What is a Hurricane?
There are 5 tropical storm categories based on their wind speed. Category 3-5 is considered a Major Hurricane with 5 having winds more than 252 km/hr (157 mph). Harvey was 130 mph at its peak, a Category 4.
NASA also has a cool app for tracking storms HERE.
“Tropical cyclones cause on average more than 10,000 deaths and $40 billion (U.S.) in damages globally each year.”
Immanuel is also quoted to say, “If Hurricane Harvey had happened at the end of the 20th century, the amount of rain falling in Houston in a single storm would have been a rare 1-in-2,000-year event.”
Nicky and Dave,
Thank you so much for your concern. We are safe, and by God’s grace were spared any real ill-effects from the storm. Our home did not flood, and we did not even lose power. Some of our friends suffered much more severe impacts. I am honestly not sure what would be the best charity to support. There are a lot of people in need, and a lot of things are still very uncertain around here. If a charity you trust is working to help, I would give to someone you know and trust.
Thank you so much for your concern,
Help Hurricane Harvey Victims
They are upfront about letting you know that in order that 100% of your donation goes to the actual cause itself there is an additional 10% fee you need to give to cover the administrative/overhead costs associated with running non-profits.
The best part is that they report back to you regularly on what is being done in-ground with pictures and data that are sent to you via email.
HERE is one of many efforts to help Hurricane Harvey victims on their site.
Of course you are free to choose whatever charity you believe in, but please help Hurricane Harvey victims: those who have lost homes, loved ones, and livelihood in the storm.
What does this have to do with Permaculture?
I started developing a concern for climate change back in the 90s. Back then, scientists were predicting that by the end of the 20th century, we would be experiencing extreme weather events. More violent storms, longer and hotter dry spells. While I grew up experiencing the seasonal rains living in the heart of the equatorial belt, the storms and floods in the Philippines have grown stronger only in recent years. (I guess the science was off by a few decades.)
The Importance of Trees
I’ve heard homeowners who have problems with flooding in their backyards say that they want to take out the trees and build a “retaining wall.” This doesn’t make sense, because trees actually prevent erosion and runoff through their roots. In hot climates, their leaves transpire the water into the atmosphere. Trees and other plant life help stabilize the weather.
Not mine alone, but all of our food forests combined are going to help reverse this trend of extremes and normalize weather patterns in the long run.
For more information about starting your own “food forest” See: