Colonel Gaddafi and the days of the locust

What a lot of weight there is in that one word “effective” (final sentence of the quote).

The death of Muammer Gaddafi continues to reverberate across Africa  – this time in the form of desert locusts.
Croplands in Niger and Mali are at risk from locust swarms moving south from areas in Libya and Algeria, the UN Food and Agricultural Organisation warned yesterday.
“The fall of Gaddafi was an enormous factor, to be honest,” said Keith Cressman, FAO senior locust forecaster. “It depleted the Libyans’ capacity to monitor [the pests] and respond….
Under Gadaffi, Libya had an effective locust control programme, Mr Cressman said, but the vehicles, sprayers and other equipment were no longer available.

Locusts free to swarm
Xan Rice
Financial Times
Weds 6th June 2012

I don’t know how our hydrocarbon regimes will end exactly, of course. Nobody does, and anyone who says they do is a fool or a con artist. But end it will – either because there isn’t any left (very unlikely) or else some of the other problems we have been busy creating for ourselves come and bite us on the ass from leftfield. And the day after, we will be cursing a “control” programme that relies on “vehicles, sprayers and other equipment.” Am I advocating North Korean/Pol Pot slave labour and autarky and the idiocy of rural life. Of course I am bloody not. I am advocating we start thinking seriously and systematically about the vulnerabilities in our “supply chains” (another phrase full of weight). Alas, this is too scary for us to do.

About dwighttowers

Below the surface...
This entry was posted in a little self-knowledge, climate, competence, death, economics, Financial Times and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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