Thursday, March 20, 2014

El Nino Geopolitics


For international security analysts, humanitarian operations planners, and humanitarian logisticians, the ability to identify emerging global hot spots is crucial. Over the coming months, areas such as Syria, the Crimea, Venezuela, Sudan, and the Central African Republic will no doubt make a list of potential shatter belts, complex emergencies, and geopolitical flashpoints worth monitoring.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Review: Katio KA550 - A Terrific Humanitarian and Emergency Multiband Receiver




This is a cross-post from Relief Analysis Radio.
See a summary from the SWLing Post.

Relief Analysis Radio just had a unique opportunity to review Kaito Electronics' KA550 World Receiver, which features AM, FM, SW, and NOAA radio bands as well as a host of redundant power options.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

The Next Black Swan?




Cross-posted by the Center for Climate and Security


A new "Black Swan" may be emerging for the international humanitarian community. Often defined as a high impact, low probability wildcard--this new threat could be game changer for almost anyone involved in international security, disaster recovery, or relief work. The threat lurks just a few hundred feet below the surface of the Pacific Ocean, and if researcher Matthew England is correct, in a few years time we all may have something extraordinary to contend with.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Australia's Firefighting Force Must Double by 2030

Climate Change could catalyze the need for Australia to double its fire fighting force by 2030. But climate change's global impacts could also unravel international mutual aid agreements used in the continent's current response operations. [Image: Wikipedia Commons]

Cross-posted by the Center for Climate and Security

Australia is coming off of its warmest documented year on record, and the climate-vulnerable continent needs more firefighters. As referenced in a landmark report from the Climate Council of Australia, the nation’s firefighting force must double to 22,000 personnel by 2030 to combat a projected upsurge in dangerous brushfires. But the threat of climate change is working in parallel--something which could enhance fire risk and even potentially unravel international mutual aid agreements.

Monday, January 13, 2014

If the Polar Vortex Descends on Syria



Cross-posted by the Center for Climate and Security

The Northern Hemisphere is in the depths of its winter season. Last week's polar vortex that plunged much of the US and Canada into subzero headlines made international headlines. Temperatures that cold hadn't been registered in many places in two decades.

The deep freeze was made possible by an intense blocking pattern over Greenland and a wobbly jet stream that plummeted polar air from the arctic to North American mid-latitudes. Imagining a similar scenario where arctic air spills into Eurasia, and specifically the Middle East, is not only a plausible one (hence, the first snowfall in Cairo in 100 years this past December), but is a devastating scenario for over 8.8 million refugees and Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) currently uprooted by the Syrian humanitarian crisis.
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