- Beretta moving to Tennessee over Maryland gun laws
- Neal Boortz defends Hillary Clinton for representing child rapist
- House task force to recommend National Guard on border, faster deportations
- Top federal judge uses pizza to explain complex Obamacare situation
- Obama, Biden overhaul job training programs
- Drought-plagued Californians turn to paint to keep lawns green
- ISIL now forcing Iraqi shopkeepers to veil mannequins in Mosul
- 11 parents of Nigeria’s abducted girls die
- Genetic mapping triggers new hope on schizophrenia
- Turkish P.M. Erdogan won’t speak to Obama, but he’ll take calls from Biden
Weather ravages Brazil
Question of the Day
The government is giving lumber seized from illegal Amazon loggers to the ribeirinhos so they can build their shacks higher.
The lumber also is going to slum dwellers whose stilt shanties litter big jungle cities such as Manaus — an industrial metropolis of 1.7 million that’s also a jumping-off point for jungle tourism — so they can try to stay dry as the mighty Rio Negro, an Amazon River tributary, approaches a record high-water mark set in 1953.
The floods are driving anacondas and scorpions to higher ground and closer to humanity as they search for food. While many of the animals in the Amazon thrive on the higher water, experts warn that more droughts could sharply reduce the range of species such as pink Amazon River dolphins, already under pressure because of deforestation and pollution.
“We could be looking at an Amazon that is much more populated by animals that are generalists and can move through human landscapes, and some of the more sensitive species will be caught in islands of habitats,” Mr. Nepstad said.
In Trizidela do Vale, floodwaters reached the red tile rooftops of many homes and left more than half of the town’s 20,000 residents homeless. Many sheltered in cow pens used for the town’s annual cattle fair until officials closed them as unsanitary.
In Manaquiri, ribeirinhos whose crops were destroyed paddle into the town of 19,000, seeking government handouts of food, medicine and clothing.
“We are used to floods and droughts and know how to coexist with them, but we are not used to them happening so swiftly and lasting so long and causing so much damage,” said schoolteacher Gleicimeire Freire, who distributes aid with the Roman Catholic Church. “This is what is scaring us.”
In southern Rio Grande do Sul state, bordering Argentina and Uruguay, many farmers say the driest weather in 80 years has withered their corn and alfalfa. Winter grass for cattle couldn’t be planted, and milk production has suffered, said Darcisio Perondo, a congressman who represents the state.
“In some villages there wasn’t enough water for people to drink, and in some towns they had to get water from the large rivers and tote it by truck for the cattle,” Mr. Perondo said.
He called the situation a calamity, but isn’t sure whether global warming is to blame.
“Anyone who reads the Bible knows that floods and droughts are cyclical,” he said. “I just don’t know if global warming is causing this.”
TWT Video Picks
U.S. appetite for drugs begets violence migrants are fleeing
- IRS seeks help destroying another 3,200 computer hard drives
- D.C. appeals panel deals big blow to Obamacare subsidies
- 'Straight White Guy Festival' supposedly set for Ohio park
- Tony Dungy doubles down on Michael Sam remarks: 'Drafting him would bring much distraction'
- DEACE: How to go from civil rights icon to bigot in one quote
- Hamas terrorists wear Israeli army uniforms to ambush soldiers in Gaza
- YOUNG: A sinking presidency, deeper after November?
- Obama family set to buy $4.25M desert home in California: report
- Rick Perry: County jails in Texas have taken in 203,000 "criminal aliens"
- Rep. Jared Polis' anti-fracking crusade riles Colorado
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world
Fighting in Iraq