We are still reeling.
I slept between 2:30 and 5:30 this morning. There is another storm on its way. Most of my friends and family are alive. Noone is unchanged or unchallenged by today’s reality after #HurricaneDorian.
The #ClimateScience says, this is not our last #CategoryFiveHurricane.
The #MapData says there were tens of thousands of people in the path of the storm. #Historical data tells us this recovery effort will take months to organize, 3-4 years to stabilize and possibly decades to return to normal (without another #CategoryFiveHurricane). The #Science paints a bleak picture. We were not ready and we may not be ready for the next one.
Let’s put it into #Perspective. We are considered one of the #richest nations in the #Caribbean (3rd), but our #CostOfLiving is the third highest in the world. We need to take an objecive look at our position and fix some fundamental issues before we can be ready for disasters.
Most of our islands, do not have an independent functioning permanent fire emergency service. Most of our islands do not have stable electricity or water supplies that all users can access. most of our islands do not have effective, present, local government that make democratic or science based decisions in the best interest of the average community member. (feel free to challenge any of these statements with facts, I would love to be wrong)
I am challenging the Bahamas to seek alternative ways of thinking.
We still rely on outside sources of energy and even if we gained energy independence, the equipment we use to harness that energy comes from outside. Instead of how can we generate electricity (Bunker C fuel oil is bad and solar is better), what if the conversation was “why are we using electricity to make light when we already have sunlight?” We just need to put that light where we need it. Here is a simple option, solar light tubes. imagine millions of lights inside homes can be turned off. #EnergySecurity
We still have a fundamental problem with getting basic forms and processes completed in the Bahamas. Passports, drivers’ licenses, NIB cards are still processed 9 to 5 PM, primarily in New Providence. For in person interviews, can those be held after an adult collects the child from school? Saturdays, Sundays? Why can’t a government employee work when their hours would be more productive? Why interrupt the work day or take a child out of school for a process that could primarily be completed online? #EfficientProcesses
Bahamians may spend 4 hours a day in traffic if they catch a bus. Jitney licenses are limited and the routes are not well regulated. Drivers take shortcuts and stop wherever they see a potential customer. They jockey for position and risk accidents regularly for a 2 dollar fare. This is largely because they have to pay the jitney or license plate owner rent before they can earn their own money. #PublicTransport #SustainableTransport
Each of these things hinders and suppresses our economic independence, and social growth. any of these things if changed could significantly alter the way life operates in the Bahamas. We need to ask for change though. We may need to fight for change. But we need to be the change first. can you #BeTheChange?
Can we be the storm before the next storm?