Saturday, January 29, 2005

Reuters AlertNet - Indian village beats tsunami with tree power

Reuters AlertNet - Indian village beats tsunami with tree power: "NALUVEDAPATHY, India, Jan 28 (Reuters) - Two years ago, drought-stricken farmers in a village on the southern coast of India walked into the Guinness Book of World Records by planting the highest number of saplings in a 24-hour period.

On Dec. 26, as the killer tsunami struck down thousands of people and homes in Tamil Nadu state, the casuarina and eucalyptus trees which had been planted to appease the weather gods saved the lush green village of Naluvedapathy.

Of the nearly 8,000 people who died in the state, including 6,000 in one fishing village, only seven were from Naluvedapathy.
'We knew the trees would be a good wind barrier but never thought it would work one day as a water barrier as well,' said Sudeep Jain, a top local government official.

'We planted trees for invoking rain gods as this area had faced drought for several years. No one ever imagined it could save the village from a disaster like a tsunami.'

The casuarina trees, which numbered more than 60,000, took the brunt of the tsunami waves as they swept Naluvedapathy."


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