MOSAIC NOLA:The Gentilly Project

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Latin America Also Suffers with Katrina

Hurricane Katrina left millions of people without homes, possessions, jobs, and much more. However, we tend to forget the effect Hurricane Katrina had on the international community. I am from Panama, and I constantly hear about the consequences Katrina has left on Panama. The following translated exert is from La Prensa, a Panamanian newspaper:

“The passing of Hurricane Katrina has evoked an energy crisis generalized by insufficient gas in the region and our dependency as an importing country; therefore, we need to immediately examine the energy savings solution (National Hydrocarbon Policy) proposed by the National Government National Hydrocarbon several weeks ago. The production and refinement stoppage of oil in the Gulf of Mexico has a direct effect on the prices of gasoline and diesel that are imported to Panama.” [1]

This passage does not give you the overall outlook of what is going on, but currently in Panama, the following is going down:

1. Public transportation is increasing the fee from 25 cents to 40 cents, which does not seem that much here in the US, but the minimum wage in Panama is around $300 a month.
2. Because of the transportation increase, hundreds of high school and college students are protesting almost daily to maintain the current fare. (Pictures at
3. “La canasta basica” or the basic food items have constantly increased in costs because of increase in transportation costs.
[1]De Icaza, Fransico. El impacto de Katrina y las políticas alternas de energía


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