February 1, 2011 – theipl2blog
The ipl2’s February newsletter concerns the topic of floods and flooding. Recently several very large floods have occurred around the world. The most widely covered of these struck Australia, Pakistan, and Brazil, yet there has also been flooding in Europe and the U.S.
We begin by providing links to information about some of these recent floods around the world. Next we provide resources to help you to visualize the extent of the recent floods. If you are ever faced with an impending flood, we include websites containing information about how to deal with a flood when one occurs. We also have some information about volunteering to help out those impacted by disasters. And since floods have been important factors in shaping human societies, we conclude with information about various historic floods and with some links to information about religious and mythological stories involving floods.
New resources that will be added to the ipl2 are noted NEW! All others are already a part of the ipl2 collection.
We hope this month’s selections will provide you with a well-rounded view of the subject of floods.
Recent Floods in the News
NEW! BBC World Service — Australia Floods: “Inland Sea” Moves Across Victoria
One of the most dramatic recent floods occurred in Australia. You can read some background information and find links to other stories about the Australian flood at the BBC World Service.
NEW! BBC World Service — Pakistan Floods
Pakistan has also recently experienced major flooding. Find information and resources on the subject from the BBC World Service.
Visualizing and Understanding Flooding
At times it can be difficult to understand the scale of a massive environmental disaster, such as a flood. These links are intended to provide us with tools to better visualize and understand the scope of a flood’s impact.
NEW! ABC QLD Flood Crisis Map — Australian Broadcasting Corporation
This Australia-based website uses crowd sourcing technologies to track the impact of the 2011 flooding in Queensland, Australia. The site, sponsored by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, receives updates from the community, the Queensland Department of Main Roads, and State Emergency Services.
NEW! Visualizing the Pakistan Flood — Ifitweremyhome.com
This U.S.-based website allows users to compare the size of the 2010 Pakistan flood impact zone to their own home, or regions with which they are familiar.
Are you ready for flooding or another natural disaster? These websites can help you prepare for such emergencies.
NEW! DisasterAssistance.gov – Flood
This U.S. government website provides information and a directory to other websites such as the CDC, Red Cross and FEMA for “information and services relating to … disaster management: preparedness, response, recovery, and mitigation.”
Are You Ready? An In-depth Guide to Citizen Preparedness (Find it on ipl2: Resources by Subject — Civil Defense)
“Are You Ready?” is an in-depth guide to disaster preparedness available online, as a PDF and also as a video. Available in English and Spanish.
FEMA.gov: Federal Emergency Management Agency (Find it on ipl2: Resources by Subject – Disaster Preparedness and Recovery)
This U.S. government agency has current disaster news, storm watches, disaster assistance, mitigation, preparedness, flood insurance, and photographs and video clips of disasters. Visit “Plan and Prepare” for advice on preparing for a flood or other disasters, including Protecting Your Family (disaster supplies kits, shelter, etc.) and Protect Your Property (flood insurance, information on flood plains, and How To guides).
Floods are often so devastating that local and national institutions can be overwhelmed. Volunteers often help fill in the gaps. You can find ways to volunteer your time and talents in all sorts of areas using these links.
Volunteer Match (Find it on ipl2: Resources by Subject – Social Sciences – Social Issues and Social Welfare – Philanthropy and Social Service)
Volunteer Match puts those interested in volunteering in touch with non-profit organizations with over 70,000 participating non-profits. Site visitors can search for volunteer opportunities in the United States based on location or by skills needed. The advanced search option allows for searching by interest area such as disaster relief, environment, and politics.
Idealist.org (Find it on ipl2: Resources by Subject – Reference – Associations and Organizations)
The Volunteer Resource Center at Idealist.org explains the nature of volunteering, the importance of volunteering, and the different types of volunteer positions. The site also includes information about international volunteering.
The disastrous floods of recent years have their counterparts in history. Here are links that describe some of these historic floods.
NEW! Kansas Water Science Center
The most significant floods in terms of amount of flooding, damage, and deaths of the 20th century are described by the United States Geological Survey website. Included are a flood data table, a map showing locations of the floods, descriptions of various kinds of floods, and links to additional flood information.
NEW! Yangtze River Peaks in China
In what was perhaps the worst natural disaster of the 20th century, the Yangtze River in China overflowed, killing 3.7 million people during and after the flooding. The History Channel website provides background on this flood.
NEW! Dealing with the Deluge
Sites of frequent flooding, with reference to significant historic floods, are described on the website of PBS (Public Broadcasting System). Included are the Yellow River, the Nile River, and the Mississippi River.
Religion and Myth
As many of the above links amply demonstrate, the history of the world is full of stories of major destructive floods, many of which changed the course of world events in dramatic and permanent ways. You can learn about floods in myth and religion, and also read the biblical Noah story, using the following links.
NEW! Encyclopedia.com — Flood
This Encyclopedia.com entry on floods includes information about the flooding process, historical floods, and floods in myth and religion. Click on the tabs to find information on these different topics.
NEW! Bible, King James Version — The Book of Genesis
One of the most famous religious stories involving a flood is that of Noah, who is mentioned in both the Bible and the Koran. You can read the biblical version of his story in chapter 6 to 8 of the Book of Genesis, here offered in the classic King James translation.