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CNN10 2020-02-18

CNN 10

Corona Virus Takes An Economic Toll on China; Massive Swarms of Locusts Descend Upon East Africa; A Purse Lost Decades Ago Becomes a Time Capsule in Ohio

Aired February 18, 2020 - 04:00:00 聽 ET


CARL AZUZ, CNN 10 ANCHOR: Back from the President's Day holiday, it's great to see you and have you watching CNN 10. I'm Carl Azuz at the CNN Center. Today's show starts with the number 780 million. That's almost half the population of China. It's more than twice the population of the United States and 780 million is the number of Chinese under some form of travel restriction as their government tries to stop the spread of the Wuhan corona virus. As we've reported it's spread around the world but China has been hardest hit, 70,000 people there have been infected with the virus, 1,070 have died there from it. That's about 2.5 percent of those who catch the disease in China. Deaths have also been reported in Hong Kong, the Philippines, Japan and France and cases have been reported in more than 24 countries on almost every continent.

There's no vaccine or cure for the new corona virus. Some people get severe symptoms and develop pneumonia. Some people have almost no symptoms at all and quarantines have been put in place in China and abroad in an effort to protect those who don't have it from those who do. Aboard the Diamond Princess, that's a cruise ship that's been docked in Japan for two weeks at least 456 people have tested positive for the corona virus. There were roughly 3,700 people aboard in total. More than 300 Americans who were on the ship have been allowed to travel back to the U.S. but they'll reportedly be quarantined again on American soil for another 14 days.

The World Health Organization, which is part of the United Nations, is not officially classifying the new corona virus as a pandemic. A disease epidemic that spreads throughout the world. Officials there say they're not seeing the virus spread widely in individual communities outside of China but for those inside China the scenes are eerie and the economic impact is growing.


DAVID CULVER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: You're looking at the post Lunar New Year holiday rush on the streets of Beijing. Most years you'd see millions of migrant workers pouring back into China's capital but this year a much slower pace and thin crowds. The normally bustling shopping districts, desolate on the outside at least. You'd think you'd find more life indoors? Health checkpoints like this one screen people at every entrance of this shopping mall. Sanitized only to enter a sterile and near empty space.

On any other given Sunday, especially winter malls like this one would be packed with people and instead we're pretty much the only ones here.

Popular Beijing restaurants like this one known for their Szechuan cuisine have no need to change out the white table cloths for weeks. Many are scared to even talk face to face to others let alone share a meal with them. But there's still a need to make money and there's still a demand for fresh produce. Instead of wasting their supplies, the restaurant staff has set up tables outside their storefront creating a makeshift farmer's market of sorts.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE TRANSLATED: They can't operate because of the epidemic so they need to sell out the stocks.

CULVER: It's convenient for customers like Jung Rhui (ph). He's been working remotely in IT for about a week. His company like many here in Beijing encouraging their employees to work from home but he's noticed a slump in company productivity.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE TRANSLATED: It's not as efficient as working in the office because it's not very convenient if colleagues aren't physically together.

CULVER: Jung (ph) is still among the fortunate ones. The outbreak's left many without jobs to clock into. Fong Kuin (ph) video chatted with us from Anhui in central China. She like many migrant workers had expected to travel back to Beijing to return to her job as a nanny.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE TRANSLATED: My boss told me that he would leave for America. I asked him when he would come back but he said he might not return.

CULVER: Now jobless, she's living off the two months of extra pay her former employer provided her but that's draining with each passing day.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE TRANSLATED: I just stay at home, don't go out. And the government asks us not to go out as well. I just stay at home with my family.

CULVER: And even if she wanted to return to Beijing immediately, she would expected to self-quarantine for two weeks. That's two more weeks without pay. Many migrant workers facing similar financial struggles as the government's efforts to stop the spread of the virus intensify, for now at least there is no containing the growing economic uncertainty. David Culver, CNN, Beijing.


AZUZ: 10 Second Trivia. What animal would you find in the family acrididae? Aphid, marmot, sea horse or locust. In the family acrididae you'll find grasshoppers and locusts.

Imagine seeing an approaching cloud that's massive, 37 miles long and 25 miles wide and instead of water or dust it's a cloud of locusts. That's the size of just one of the swarms that's descended this year on eastern Africa. Specifically these are desert locusts. The most destructive type of locusts that eats food and that's terrible news in a region that's food insecure, meaning there are already problems with people getting enough to eat. The United Nations says this is the worst invasion of desert locusts in 25 years. What might have made it so bad was a cyclone, a major storm that hit parts of Somalia and Ethiopia last December. That brought a lot of rain to the region and that creates the best conditions for these pests to breed. The United Nations wants the world to contribute more than $75 million so pesticides can be sprayed to kill the insects.


BECKY ANDERSON, CNN ANCHOR: Ravenous and ruthless, locusts have been known and feared by the world's most ancient civilizations but their biblical emphamy is all too real today. Right now millions of these insects are sweeping across the farm lands of east Africa. Some reports say there are billions destroying crops and threatening livelihoods. For farmers across the region this is the sound of danger.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE TRANSLATED: We depend a lot on this season and we worry that the locusts will destroy our harvest and we will end up remaining hungry throughout the rest of the year. Waiting for October when we have the next planting season.

ANDERSON: This years locusts invasion is so bad that the UN is warning of a serious food crisis in Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and Somalia.

The UN's Food and Agriculture Organization says massive food assistance now maybe needed.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There's already 13 million people in that region that are in acute food insecurity. This is just one level below famine.

Seventy-five percent of those people live in areas that are now currently infested with desert locust.

ANDERSON: Somalia has already declared a national emergency and the UN warms this could become the most devastating plague of locusts in living memory if the world doesn't step up against the onslaught.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have a very small window in order to achieve this before the next planting season. If we don't get the help that we're appealing for or for some reason the - - the - - the control operations are not successful, the locust they just continue to breed and between now and June there could be a 400 fold increase of locust.

ANDERSON: Climate experts are blaming unusual heavy rain fall and cyclones which provide ideal environments for rapid breeding for this years massive swarms. And with wetter and hotter weather than usual forecast until May, the warn the worst is yet to come. Becky Anderson, CNN.




AZUZ: Well even though this happened in February it was time to own the night like the 4th of July because baby it's a firework. The Guinness World Record for the biggest one ever. It's shell was more than five feet in diameter and it weighed 2,800 pounds as much as a compact car. It took explosives to get the thing off the ground but once it did, it lifted almost a mile high before onlookers in Colorado were left in awe, awe, awe.

It was even brighter than the moon, moon, moon and it's no wonder why when the color's burst viewers got such a "charge" out of it.

Critics might have called it a waste of space but when its makers ignited the light and let it shine it would be "okatie" to say it was "perry impressive". If you're not familiar with that song, those puns are a total dud. But our viewers in Sioux Falls, South Dakota aren't. Whittier Middle School has been subscribing to our You Tube channel. For those looking for the shout out tips, be sure you do that too to subscribe on You Tube and check out the community tab. I'm Carl Azuz for CNN.