News, Notes, and Dispatches From Wherever Coconuts Grow
Category: Oceania

December 18, 2007

World's First Climate Change Refugees Leave Island Due to Rising Sea Levels

A followup to this Coconut Blog entry from 2005: Grim story of rising sea levels in the Carteret Islands...

"For drinking all we can rely on now is rainwater and coconut juice, but even the coconut trees are dying. You can walk along the beach and see just the bottoms of dead trees sticking up through the sand . . .

The roots and branches of trees destroyed by the encroaching salt water have become a breeding ground for malaria-carrying mosquitoes and unripened coconuts that have fallen from trees unable to hold them litter the swampy paths from the beach."

Posted by brian at 01:29 PM | Oceania | Comments (57)

November 26, 2005

Global Warming and the End of the Carteret Islands

From a story in the Sydney Morning Herald:

FOR more than 30 years, the 980 people living on the six minute horseshoe-shaped Carteret atolls have battled the Pacific to stop salt water destroying their coconut palms and waves crashing over their houses. They failed.

On Thursday a decision was made that will make their group of low-lying islands literally go down in history. In the week before 150 countries meet in Montreal to discuss how to combat global warming and rising sea levels, the Carterets' people became the first to be officially evacuated because of climate change.

As soon as money is available to the Papua New Guinean regional government, 10 families at a time will be moved to Bougainville, a larger island 100 kilometres away. Within two years the six Carterets, roughly the size of 80 football pitches and just 1.5 metres high, will be uninhabited and undefended. By 2015 they are likely to be completely submerged.

Full story online at the SMH....

Posted by brian at 08:14 PM | Oceania | Comments (0)

November 06, 2005

Grandma 'felled' by Coconut Tree

From the New Straits Times-Press comes the sad story of Mariah Daud:

PASIR PUTIH, Fri. - Mariah Daud walked to school, as she always did, to pick up her granddaughter and bring her home yesterday. But she never reached Sekolah Kebangsaan Padang Pak Mat. A coconut tree fell on her at Kampung Guntung, Wakaf Lanas, about 500 metres from her home. She died a few hours later...

Posted by brian at 10:16 AM | Oceania | Comments (0)

May 19, 2005

How The Yellow Emergency Coconut Bridge Came To Be

"Soon after construction started, it became the "Coconut Bridge." It took on this moniker because everyone likes coconuts and "Coconut Bridge" sounds environmentally friendly (which it is) and tropical (which it is as well). Over time, some questions remained as to if it was a coconut or emergency bridge - understandably confusing."

From an article on the Mercy Corps of Indonesia website.

Posted by brian at 05:23 PM | Oceania | Comments (0)

April 18, 2004

Coconut Economics

One thing you won't hear a U.S. presidential candidate accuse an opposing candidate of: lacking in knowledge of "coconut economics".

Posted by brian at 09:45 AM | Oceania | Comments (0)

July 31, 2003

Fighting SARS . . . With Coconuts?

In the Phillipines, latik is the term used to describe the residue left over when coconut milk is cooked to the point where it turns to oil.

In June, an epidemiologist in the Phillipines was reported to claim that latik may help fight the SARS virus. Here's the story from the Manila Times.

Well it turns out there are others exploring the use of coconuts and coconut products in the fight against SARS. Here are some recent headlines:

  • Virgin Coconut Oil Being Tested on SARS Patients -- 18 May 2003 -- Inquirer News Service, Manila

  • Can Coconut Drive SARS to Nuts? -- 19 May 2003 --- The Hindu, India

  • How to Make a Difference Among Those Troubled by SARS. TeamExpansion is a church group in Taiwan and this article mentions this:
    On Tuesday, some of our church people decided that at least we should go a pray and try to encourage the quarantined medical workers and SARS patients in a visible way. We had a banner made which read something like, "Dear doctors, nurses, staff, and sick friends: We know you're having a rough time. We will pray for you daily and ask God to protect your health and give you peace." We took the banner to Chang Gung Hospital (the most affected hospital in southern Taiwan) near our church, tied it between two coconut trees and began to pray and sing. Within seconds we were swarmed by local media, taking pictures and wondering what we were up to. It was a great opportunity to share our concern and the hope we have. We made the papers too.
    Well you just made a blog as well. :-)

Posted by brian at 08:46 PM | Oceania | Comments (0)

Ensiklonesia: An Indonesia Blog

Ensiklonesia.net is a blog focusing on life in Indonesia.

From tomorrow's blog entry (why, it's already tomorrow, August 1st, in Indonesia!):

Nothing quenches thirst on a hot blazing day quite like an icy cold bottle of teh botol. Teh botol, the Sosro brand in particular, is undoubtedly Indonesia’s most favorite tea beverage. It really is nothing more than just extremely well marketed lightly sweetened jasmine teh. The taste of the dark teh botol is not only eminently strong but also very exhilarating. To wash down a hearty meal without teh botol would be the unthinkable to an Indonesian.

Sounds like teh botol is to Indonesia as Lea & Perrins Worcestershire is to Salvadorans!

Posted by brian at 01:12 PM | Oceania | Comments (1)

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