UPDATE: Officials now say flooding most likely did not play a role in the outbreak. Read more here.
The historic flooding that struck parts of Britain may have caused a subsequent outbreak of a dreaded livestock viral infection, foot-and-mouth disease, according to a report today in the Australian. Overflowing sewage, caused by the nearly unprecedented surge in rainwater runoff, filled a portion of one field, and may have sparked the outbreak that has so-far led to the slaughter of animals on two farms, a wider quarantine on the area and a still-wider ban on exportation of livestock.
The disease is one of the most dreaded by ranchers because it is so contagious and usually leads to the death of a herd -- in today's time because the forced destruction is the best way to stop further spread of the disease. It hasn't emerged in America in decades, though the best precautions can't assure it won't again, experts say. The outbreak is also a worrying sign, given that there is a widespread perception that the floods are a result of extreme weather wrought by global warming.
The United Nations included the floods in a recent tally of extreme weather linked to climate change (for more, click here). The subsequent outbreak of disease shows the cascading effect of devastation that can result from climate change.
Your Photos of England's Flood Submitted by The Daily Green Community to Weird Weather Watch
England Floods: Flooded Meadow
Young Lovers Caught in Flood
Driving Through the Flood
Children Play in Flooded Underpass
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