- US life expectancy dropped again, marking the worst two-year decline in a century.
- Europe’s inflation hit another high of 9.1%.
- Even if we stop emissions now, sea levels will rise 10 inches by 2100.
September is FEMA’s National Preparedness Month
Throughout September, I’ll feature tips and tidbits from each section of our beginner’s checklist/master list in every roundup. Then, we’ll head to Discord to join the conversation about that (half) week’s topic and challenges. By the end of the month, we would have gone through the entire guide. These convos and challenges are aimed at both beginners and more advanced preppers. Here’s a rough schedule:
Fri 02: Tips, Plan according to risks, Maslow’s hierarchy and the 80-20 rule.
Tue 06: Money & Health.
Fri 09: 72 hrs vs. 2 weeks.
Tue 13: Get your home ready.
Fri 16: Bug out Bags.
Tue 20: EDC and GHB.
Fri 23: Learn and practice.
Tue 27: Share and recruit.
Fri 30: Recap & where to go from here?
Today’s theme: Tips, Plan according to risks, Maslow’s hierarchy and the 80-20 rule.
- You can’t predict when an emergency will happen, so a good prep is always ready.
- If you’re on a budget, it’s better to buy fewer high-quality things than cheap stuff that will fail when you need them most. You can prep without much money, but it looks more like DIY and second-hand purchases, less so the dollar store.
- Don’t let prepping overwhelm or defeat you. It’s important to enjoy the good life now and not go down a dark spiral of doomsday depression or blow your life savings on supplies. You can prepare without giving up, just like how buying health insurance doesn’t mean you’ve given up on your health.
Plan according to risks:
The prepping basics checklist is the same for 98% of people and scenarios. Then there are specifics you layer on top of the basics depending on your local risks. If you’re preparing for a hurricane, for example, you’d want to figure out your storm shutters plan sooner than later. But all the core stuff like two weeks of supplies and a go-bag are the same.
Maslow’s hierarchy and the 80-20 rule:
The initial 20% (what the beginner’s guide covers) of all the possible work you could do in prepping gets you 80% of the way there. For example, you should prepare for the 80% of likely scenarios, not the unlikely ones like fascist zombies arriving on a radioactive alien asteroid. Maslow’s hierarchy is a popular psychology principle that explains what humans need to survive and thrive in order of importance:
Once you’ve got those covered, you can then think about the next layer and so on. Use these two critical frameworks to keep your preparations grounded and prioritized.
The first discussion of the month: If you could go back and talk to yourself on your first day of prepping, what tips and advice would you give? Join the conversation on Discord Friday anytime after 1 pm Eastern.
Economy, energy, supply chain
US job vacancies rose in July, showing that the labor market is still hot and ruining the Fed’s hopes for cooling. Some economists believe that >11M job openings are a crucial indicator that the US is not in a recession. The Fed might give up on a ‘soft landing’ in favor of a ‘growth recession’ (thread):
📉 Economists say the Fed’s target is not a “soft-landing” anymore, but something more painful for Americans: a “growth recession.”
— FORTUNE (@FortuneMagazine) September 1, 2022
Goldman Sachs predicts the US is entering its first housing downturn of the post-Great Financial Crisis era, and the recovery won’t come until 2024 (thread):
🏡 The U.S. entered into its first housing downturn of the post–Great Financial Crisis era. But the worst still awaits.
— FORTUNE (@FortuneMagazine) August 31, 2022
Eurozone inflation hit a new record high in August at 9.1% as food and energy prices soared. At 38.3%, energy had the highest inflation rate, down slightly from 39.6% in July. Food, alcohol, and tobacco sales were up 10.6% compared to 9.8% in July, thanks to recent heatwaves across the continent. Even though French and Spanish inflation seems to be slowing down, Europe is likely heading for a recession. How bad will it be?
Water scarcity and climate change threaten the backbone of the digital economy, data centers. Approximately 20% of US data centers rely on watersheds that are under moderate to high stress from drought and other factors, but only 16% reported their plans for managing water-related risks.
Russia halted the Nord Stream 1 gas flow to Europe again, citing maintenance requirements. Europe is making progress in filling its gas storage tanks, and the EU is preparing to take emergency action to reform the electricity market. German industrial producers seek to cut down on natural gas by firing up coal plants and shifting some products abroad. Even rival firms are considering sharing energy. Germany has filled its gas tanks to more than 82% capacity to prepare for winter. But nobody knows how Germany, Europe’s largest economy and heavily dependent on Russian gas, will fare.
Honda Motor and LG Energy will build a new $4.4 billion lithium-ion battery plant in the US. The exact location is still not public, but it will likely be in Ohio.
The electric vehicle boom could bring lithium mines back to North Carolina. Not all locals are happy about it. As the US seeks to source minerals domestically, these clashes might become more frequent.
Climate change, environment, extreme weather
Jackson, Mississippi, is without water after heavy rains and flooding overwhelmed the city’s main water treatment plant. Schools and businesses are closed, and residents have been scrambling to find any water at all. The Mayor hopes water service can be restored this week. Some say this crisis was decades in the making. Biden declared a state of emergency.
In Jackson, Mississippi the National Guard is helping hand out clean water amid a growing emergency.
— NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt (@NBCNightlyNews) September 1, 2022
Pakistan floods: How melting glaciers fueled the country’s fatal floods. Pakistan has more than 7,000 glaciers, and climate change is melting them into floodwater.
Another risk to keep in mind during floods: storm drains. An 11-year-old boy died after being swept into a storm drain during a flash flood in Arkansas. An adult who tried to save the boy also was swept into the drain but was rescued. Being swept into a storm drain during a flood is a risk big enough (four deaths during Hurricane Ida) that officials are starting to address the danger. For example, this year, the Department of Housing and Urban Development added an “important consideration” to its guidance for HUD housing developments: Those doing environmental assessments should consider whether nearby stormwater infrastructure includes “measures like grates or fencing to prevent drownings during floods.”
Super Typhoon Hinnamnor (Cat 4) is expected to bring floods and wind damage to parts of Japan and South Korea:
A baby died in Spain after being hit by an intense hailstorm that brought hail as large as 10 cm (almost 4 in) in diameter:
Study: The best-case scenario for Greenland ice melt just got worse, even if we stopped burning fossil fuels today. In a new study, zombie ice from Greenland will raise the sea level by almost 11 inches by 2100-2150, twice as much as previous estimates. Increasing temperatures have pushed the snow line in Greenland higher, exposing ‘dead ice’ on the island’s edges, which will eventually thaw into the ocean, pushing up sea levels.
Analysis: Air turbulence could get a lot worse because of climate change. “Clear air turbulence” occurs without warning and is hard to avoid. A new analysis predicts an increase in clear-air turbulence by 2050-2080, particularly along the busiest flight routes. It does not mean, however, that flying will be less safe. The average duration of turbulence will increase, though. Transatlantic flights may have up to 30 minutes of turbulence in a few decades.
- Pfizer/BioNTech: people 12 and up.
- Moderna: people 18 and up.
- Both shots can be administered starting two months following a primary vaccination series or prior booster.
- Old booster shots are no longer authorized for people eligible for the new booster shots.
There seems to be some good news in the battle against long Covid. UK cases are falling, scientists worldwide are getting closer to being able to define and treat long Covid, and new cases of long Covid are appearing at a lower frequency.
Texas confirmed the first death of a monkeypox patient, the first in the US. The patient was allegedly severely immunocompromised and had many illnesses. It is still unclear if monkeypox was the leading cause of death or if this person died of other causes.
Life expectancy in the US dropped again, marking the worst two-year decline in a century. Covid deaths contributed to 74% of the decline from 2019 to 2020 and 50% from 2020 to 2021. “Unintentional injuries’ due to drug overdose were the second biggest overall reason.
International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) inspectors finally reached the Russian-occupied Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant after shelling and the emergency shutdown of one of the operating reactors. They will meet with staff and assess the risk of a radiation disaster.
Nearly 7 million displaced Ukrainians now tie for the largest refugee crisis worldwide, alongside Venezuelans and Syrians.
Taiwan predicts China may make a play for Taiwan Strait before the 2024 elections.