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Giant Jade Stone Worth $170 Million Unearthed in Burma
Miners have unearthed the world's most valuable chunk of jade stone in Burma, the southeast Asian country also known as Myanmar.
Local politician U Tint Soe stand with the jade rock.SWNS.com
Worth an estimated $174.6 million, the massive 200-ton stone measures about 14 feet high and 19 feet long, the BBC reported. It's size is second to the carved statue at the Jade Buddha Palace in China which weighs 286 tons, according to the Daily Mail.
"We thought we had won the lottery," miner Sao Min told the Daily Mail. "But this belongs to the country. It is in honor of our leaders."
The term jade can refer to two different metamorphic rocks: nephrite and jadeite. This stone is believed to be jadeite, which is worth significantly more. Nearly all of the world's finest jadeite comes from Myanmar and makes up nearly half of the country's gross domestic product.
"I assume that it is a present for the fate for our citizens, the government and our party as it was discovered in the time of our government. It's a very good sign for us," local politician U Tint Soe told the Daily Mail.
The stone will reportedly head to China where it will be used to make jewelry and statues for homes.
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Poverty and violence in Central America are major factors driving migration to the United States. But there's another force that's often overlooked: climate change.
Retired Lt. Cmdr. Oliver Leighton Barrett is with the Center for Climate and Security. He says that in Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador, crime and poor economic conditions have long led to instability.
"And when you combine that with protracted drought," he says, "it's just a stressor that makes everything worse."
Barrett says that with crops failing, many people have fled their homes.
"These folks are leaving not because they're opportunists," he says, "but because they are in survival mode. You have people that are legitimate refugees."
So Barrett supports allocating foreign aid to programs that help people in drought-ridden areas adapt to climate change.
"There are nonprofits that are operating in those countries that have great ideas in terms of teaching farmers to use the land better, to harvest water better, to use different variety of crops that are more resilient to drought conditions," he says. "Those are the kinds of programs I think are needed."
So he says the best way to reduce the number of climate change migrants is to help people thrive in their home countries.
Reporting credit: Deborah Jian Lee / ChavoBart Digital Media.
Reposted with permission from Yale Climate Connections.
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