Disasters will happen -the question is not when, but if. Yet Humanity seems to be content to endure these disasters helplessly, rather than take action to prevent or stop them.
When typhoon Haiyan/Yolanda ravaged the Philippines in late 2013, I remarked on my Facebook post that there are technologies that can stop typhoons. Although I only mentioned hurricane busting supersonic jet planes, we can also use a special fleet of submarines, or cheap plastic Salter rings floating on the open ocean. In contrast to the various positive comments regarding my donation to the victims, the silence was deafening.
Out of curiosity, I directly mentioned to a Filipina friend about stopping the next typhoon Yolanda via technological means. She politely told me of her skepticism that any solution would ever work against the might of a typhoon. I replied that if humans can develop the means to visit the moon and return safely, they should be able to find a way to defeat a typhoon too. She did not have a reply to that. When I asked her what she would do to stop the next typhoon, she replied that she prays.
Unfortunately, one of the problems I have with prayer was, didn’t God send the hurricanes in the first place? Maybe God gave us such smart brains, so that we can figure out a way to stop all these natural disasters that He sent to test us. Enough of religious speculation though… Prayer is not an effective way to solve such problems.
Humanity urgently needs to develop the technology to stop natural disasters. If Humanity can spend so much money developing weapons against each other, how about spending some to defeat our common enemies? If Hollywood can make a movie about humans defeating Kaiju/Godzillas, can’t it show the heroic efforts of scientists who find a way to defeat the real Kaiju in the form of a hurricane/typhoon?
Perhaps legal liability is one of the reasons why no nation wanted to try stopping a typhoon. Imagine that your experiment has gone awry, and the typhoon became twice as devastating as it would be without your intervention. Or imagine that we managed to deflect the typhoon from hitting our country, only for it to lurch right into an unprepared neighboring country?
The United Nations could come together, and form an international agreement that countries, companies and individuals will not be held liable if they conduct experiments agreed upon by the majority of the members. As natural disasters occur to most people in the world, it is reasonable for all nations to donate a part of their tax revenue to create a fund for disaster research, relief and compensation (for any negative experimental side effects).
The nations most affected by natural disasters (such as the Philippines and Bangladesh) could establish research labs which will spearhead Humanity’s effort to defeat natural disasters.
Imagine the day when tsunamis, typhoons, earthquakes, droughts, floods and landslides disappear into history textbooks. Imagine a day when people will not need to cry for the death of their loved ones killed by a preventable disaster. This is the future that I look forward to creating. Asking for anything less is a crime against Humanity.