An Atlanta-based meteorologist is receiving a lot of heat after a weather update about Hurricane Matthew.
In a recent on-air report, Weather Channel’s Jen Delgado attributed the massive deforestation of Haiti on hungry children who are eating trees.
Pointing to a map of Haiti’s bare terrain, she said:
“They take all the trees down. They burn the trees. Even the kids there— they’re so hungry, they actually eat the trees.”
While it is true that Haiti is experiencing an environmental crisis due to rapid deforestation; it is not, however, due to people eating them. The gradual disappearance of trees in Haiti comes largely from people burning the wood to make coal. This in turn has left the island’s hillsides vulnerable to extreme flooding and landslides.
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Twitter wasted no time correcting and slamming the reporter for her unfounded claim about hungry children eating bark.
@JenDelgadoTWC your report about Haiti is as insensitive as it gets. Let me repeat to you "we do not eat trees"!!— Paul Beaubrun (@ZingExperience) October 4, 2016
Delgado has since apologized, taking to her Facebook to express her “deep regret” for what she’s now rendered “Inappropriate”.
“My intention is always to provide relevant information to areas impacted by severe weather and I wanted to spotlight the incredibly difficult conditions that the people in Haiti continue to face, particularly in light of Hurricane Matthew.”
Hurricane Matthew has in fact impacted the island severely.
On Tuesday, the category 4 storm bulldozed through the southern tip of the island leaving Artibonite, North, Northwest and Central Plateau departments in bad shape. Video from residents posted to social media show roaring winds, extreme flooding, roofs flying and residents walking through tall water in search for higher ground.
Other parts of the small island are reporting no rain fall at all although powerlines have been blown down from the winds.
Haiti Libre has reported that more than 10,000 people have been evacuated and placed in temporary housing. The storm slammed into Cuba and the Bahamas last night and is regaining stregthen as Florida braces itself for potential damage in the next couple days.