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Posted on Saturday 1st September 2007

How would the flooding have affected us if we lived in Asia or Africa?

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Dear editor

Many people in South Yorkshire recently faced the traumatic experience
of having to leave their homes, either because of actual flooding or
the threat of Ulley dam breaking. Our thoughts are very much with the
people who still can't return to their homes and have lost most of
their possessions.

Imagine for a moment how worse the situation would have been if we
didn't have our excellent emergency services and there had been no
engineers to save the dam or firemen to pump the water away from
flooded streets.Imagine if our houses were not made of brick, but
of sticks and mud,so easily washed away by the torrents. Imagine how
the floods would have affected us if we lived in an Asian or African
village.

As climate change brings more and more extreme weather we will all
suffer from the consequences.In South Yorkshire those that are
suffering most are the people that couldn't afford insurance.In future those
that suffer most from climate change will be the poorest people in the
poorest countries, but no one will be immune to the severe weather
that we can expect. There will be more and more environmental refugees
fleeing homelands that have been flooded or ruined by drought.

I am really pleased that Sheffield is to become a "City of
Sanctuary"-this means that the City Council is publicly committed to
working to promote a welcoming city for asylum-seekers and refugees. I think the
people of South Yorkshire will now be even more understanding to these
folk that have such traumatic stories-after all, many now understand
from personal experience a little of what it is like to be a refugee.

Graham Wroe
Sheffield Green Party

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