Typhoon Etau Hits Japan

Japan’s latest natural disaster crisis.

On September 9, Typhoon Etau hit the eastern zone of Japan, letting down rain of a whopping 60 centimeters, which is more than double the amount of rainfall that normally falls during the entire month.

The tropical storm caused the Kinugawa and Shibui rivers to overflow as much as 8 kilometers past their banks. 24 people have been reported to be missing, while at least 27 have been injured by the consequent flooding. Almost a million people in Tokyo and seven other prefectures of Japan have been advised to evacuate their homes as thousands already have. Evacuees were taken to local elementary and high schools, with the Japanese Red Cross providing mattresses, pillows, blankets, emergency kits and radios. Around 100 houses were flooded in Osaki City alone, forcing residents to climb to their roofs for safety before being rescued. As Hisako Sekimoto, a 62 year old woman recalled, “there was no time to escape…” and the only passage to safety was the upper floors. The flooding has also caused massive landslides in Japan, particularly in Joso City where the most dramatic amount of rain fell.

Shizuo Kambaya for AP Images
(Shizuo Kambaya for AP Images)

While this is not the first major flooding that Japan has encountered this year, with Typhoon Goni having hit the southern island of Japan, Kyushu, injuring 70 people, the rainfall experienced within the past few days was “unprecedented”, as Takuya Deshimaru, the chief forecaster at the Japan Meteorological Agency, claimed. Firefighters and members of Japan’s Ground Self-Defense Force used boats and helicopters to rescue residents, and almost 6,000 emergency service and military personnel came to help with the rescue effort.  

Yoshikazu Tsuno for Getty Images
(Yoshikazu Tsuno for Getty Images)

The flooding has also caused environmental concerns within the global community. The rain caused by Typhoon Etau is the most that the Fukushima prefecture has seen in the last 50 years, overwhelming the drainage pumps of the nuclear reactors and consequently spewing contaminated water into the ocean, according to a Tokyo Electric Power (TEPCO) spokesman.

While Typhoon Etau has moved out into the East Sea, the storm in Japan is far from over. According to Ken Moritsugu, the bureau chief of Japan’s Associated Press, the “river is flowing directly into one side into the eastern side of the city and as a result, it will be a while to get rid of the water,” while mountains may collect more precipitation, making it harder to drain the water and possibly causing more mudslides.


– Seiyeon Park (’17)

Movie Review: The Beauty Inside

Mirror, mirror on the wall, who’s the prettiest of them all?

If you’re looking for a movie to watch this weekend — perhaps for a date with your love interest, or just with your best friends — The Beauty Inside is the movie for you. This Korean movie, featuring twenty-two talented main actors/actresses, depicts a philosophically enticing love story between an aspiring furniture designer and a furniture retailer. At first, this movie may sound like a typical romance movie, with a female and male character falling in love by chance, then getting married — however, it’s not. Instead, this movie has such a unique and revolutionary plot that distinguishes this film from other ordinary romance movies.

(Asian Wiki)
(News 1 Korea)
(News 1 Korea)

What the viewers will inconspicuously notice about the movie is the eerie tranquility that the film possesses. The colors most used in the movie are a hue of cold tones and light gray, along with other light but slightly sad colors with a hue of blue or gray in them. These colors seem to distill a calm and peaceful but slightly melancholy tone to the film, which make the film’s mood hopefully disconsolate. Most of the characters in the movie and their personalities seem to match this tranquil mood. The two main characters, Yi-soo and Woo-jin, both have extremely peaceful features, particularly the female character’s soothing voice.

(Ask KPop)

However, this tranquility is contradictory and oxymoronic to the disastrous circumstances the film depicts. The odd “disease” that the main character has of waking up with a different physical appearance every single time after he sleeps, in reality, is something that would have been deemed crazy and out-of-this-world. However, in the movie, the peacefulness seems to veil the catastrophe. It is almost as if someone has been taking too many doses of alcohol that reality is being thrown behind the blurriness of the peace created by the alcohol and one’s unconsciousness.

(Drama Story)
(Drama Story)

The romance is what ties the two contradictory aspects of the film together. The warmth of the love between the two main characters shines brightly on the cold, but crazy aspects of the movie. This is why so many audience members have enjoyed watching this movie; not because of the cheesy loveline between the two main characters, but because of the poignant and lovely emotions portrayed through a clever connection between two significant aspects of the movie.

I would strongly recommend this movie to anyone looking for love, or anyone in love. You may watch this movie not realizing the love cells that are existing inside of you, but after watching the movie, you will be able to find your emotions boiling up with the fierce fervor to find someone to love and perhaps create a artistic love story as this film.

– Ariel Hyunseo Kim (’19)

Featured Image: Next Entertainment

The Drinkable Book

You can literally drink with this book.

Did you know that a child dies every minute from a water-related disease? 783 million people worldwide, which is two and half times the population of United States, don’t have access to clean water. Clean water crisis is the top global risk, as announced by the World Economic Forum in January 2015. 

Yet, the Drinkable Book is a spark of hope. The Drinkable Book, with pages that can be torn out to filter drinking water, has proved successful in the long-run.  

The Drinkable Book (designed by Brian Gartside)

The astounding results were revealed at the 2015 American Chemical Society’s national meeting by Dr. Teri Dankovich, a postdoctoral researcher at Carnegie Mellon University who had been developing this new technology for over several years. 

Dr. Theresa Dankovich (wn.com)

Each page of the Drinkable Book is embedded with silver and copper nanoparticles that will purify water up to 99.9%, trapping the common waterborne bacteria including cholera, E. coli, and typhoid. One page produces up to 100 liters (26 gallons) of clean water. This means one book will supply four years worth of drinking water per person. Designed as an instruction manual, each page provides printed information with edible ink about the purification method and the importance of water.

Sammie Kim, The Drinkable Book, Photo by Brian Gartside 4
Each page is a filter that can purify up to a 30-day supply. (Brian Gartside)
The Drinkable Book (Brian Gartside)
Each page in the book will purify water up to 99.9%. (Brian Gartside)

“All you need to do is tear out a paper, put it in a simple filter holder and pour water into it from rivers, streams, wells, etc and out comes clean water—and dead bacteria as well…it’s directed towards communities in developing countries,” said Dr. Dankovich in BBC news.

Drinkable Book in India (Dogo news)

Alongside non-profit organizations WaterisLife and iDE, field trials were conducted in five countries—Bangladesh, Ghana, Haiti, India and Kenya—for the past two years. And in the trials, 99.9% of the bacteria from the water samples, even those from raw sewages comprising of extreme levels of bacteria, plummeted down to zero concentration. More than 90% of the filtered water samples had no viable bacteria, according to Dr. Dankovich.

Currently, Dr. Dankovich and her colleagues are producing the Drinkable Books by hand, and they hope to increase the production of the paper through “commercialisable, scalable product design.” They’re also planning to further study on removing other disease-causing microorganisms, such as protozoa and viruses.  

Dr Kyle Doudrick, a researcher at the University of Notre Dame in Indiana, has voiced support for the Drinkable Book. “Overall, out of all the technologies that are available—ceramic filters, UV sterilisation and so on—(The Drinkable Book) is a promising one, because it’s cheap, and it’s a catchy idea that people can get hold of and understand.” But even so, the Drinkable Book needs greater support from the people from all over the world. 

Go visit https://drinkablebook.tilt.com if you are willing to contribute to the Drinkable Book.

– Sammie Kim (’18)

Featured Image: The Gift of Water