Wildfires are usually the product of human negligence. Humans start about 90% of wild fires and lightning causes the other 10%. Regular causes for wildfires include arson, camping fires, throwing away cigarettes, burning rubbish, and playing with fireworks or matches. Once begun, wildfires can spread at a rate of up to 23 kph and, as a fire spreads over a landscape, it could undertake a life of its own – doing different things to keep itself going, even creating other blazesby throwing cinders miles away.
PROBLEMS WITH WATER
Nearly half the world’s population will experience critical water shortages by 2025, according to the United Nations (UN). Wars over access to water are a rising possibility in this century and the main conflicts in Africa during the next 25 years could be over this most precious of commodities, as countries fight for access to scarce resources. “Potential water wars are likely in areas where rivers and lakes are shared by more than one country,” says Mark Evans a UN worker. Evans predicts that “population growth and economic development will lead to nearly one in two people in Africa living in countries facing water scarcity or what is known as ‘water stress’ within 25 years.” Water scarcity is defined as less than 1,000 cubic metres of water available per person per year, while water stress means less than 1,500 cubic metres of water is available per person per year. The report says that by 2025, 12 more African countries will join the 13 that already suffer from water stress or water scarcity. What makes the water issue even more urgent is that demand for water will grow increasingly fast as larger areas are placed under crops and economic development. Evans adds that “the
strong possibility that the world is experiencing climate change also adds to this urgency.” The History of Papermaking in the United Kingdom
The first reference to a paper mill in the United Kingdom was in a book printed by Wynken de Worde in about 1495. This mill belonged to a certain John Tate and was near Hertford. Other early mills included one at Dartford, owned by Sir John Speilman, who was granted special privileges for the collection of rags by Queen Elizabeth and one built in Buckinghamshire before the end of the sixteenth century. During the first half of the seventeenth century, mills were established near Edinburgh, at Cannock Chase in Staffordshire, and several in Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Surrey. The Bank of England has been issuing bank notes since 1694, with simple watermarks in them since at least 1697. Henri de Portal was awarded the contract in December 1724 for producing the Bank of England watermarked bank-note paper at Bere Mill in Hampshire. Portals have retained this
contract ever since but production is no longer at Bere Mill