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Janelle Hearn

on 15 September 2013

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photo credit Nasa / Goddard Space Flight Center / Reto Stöckli
Natural disasters are extreme and sudden events caused by environmental factors that injure people and damage property (Natural Disasters, n.d.).
The following is an informative presentation on:
Tidal Wave
Since 1970 the tropical countries most affected by cyclones are: China, Philippines, Japan, Mexico, United States of America, Australia, Taiwan, Vietnam, Madagascar and Cuba.
A flood is defined as an overflow of water that submerges land that is usually dry.
Some floods may develop slowly, where others can develop in a matter of minutes and these are called flash floods (Flood, 2002)
The worst reported flood in history was the 1931 Central China Floods (1931 China Floods, 2005).
Affected areas were the Yellow River, Yangtze River and Huai River .
It eventuated in the death of between 145,000 to 3.7 to 4 million people.
Over the past 50 years there has been a dramatic increase in flood occurances (List of floods, 2007):
1960's - 4 recorded
1970's - 4 recorded
1980's - 4 recorded
1990's - 14 recorded
2000's - 22 recorded
2010's - 19 recorded
The most affected land mass due to flood was seen in the 2010 Pakistan Flood.
Approximately 796,095 square kilometers (307,374 sq mil) was underwater which equals to about 1/5 of Pakinstan's total land mass (2010 Pakistan Floods, 2010) .
Reducing the future risk requires consideration of existing and future communities. The complexity highlights the need to utilise a range of different skills and disciplines (Components of flood risk, n.d.).
It is very hard to put a figure on the cost of rebuilding after a flood, however in most cases it totals up into the billions of dollars (Rebuilding after the floods, n.d.).
Floods are considered one of Australia's most expensive natural disasters.
There are other costs involved to be contemplated; loss of life, loss of livlihood, increase in insurance costs, increase in food due to shortages etc.
Tidal Wave
(Top 10 Infamous Natural Disasters of the Last 100 Years, 2012)
All of the information included in this presentation followed strict criteria to ensure credibility. The following points outline the criteria used:
Currency - all information used was current and had been published in the last 5 years
Credentials - articles were referenced to an author with credible credentials
Accuracy - the accuracy of all information in the articles used could be verified with other sources
Details - the sources used weren't too vague and went into sufficient detail
Purpose - the source had no vested interest in the publication of the information used.
Cyclones are low pressure systems that form over tropical waters. They produce gale force winds, heavy rainfall, flooding and generate damaging tidal storm surges. Tropical cyclones can also be referred to as hurricanes or typhoons.
This graph shows the constant increase in recorded cyclones from 1970 to 2009. Changing weather patterns are associated with the increase in the number of high intensity cyclones occurring and predicted to occur in the future. These weather changes can be linked to climate change and the ever increasing tropical sea surface temperatures.
The world wide annual damage bill for cyclones has been calculated at $26 billion dollars. Between 1977 and 2009 it was estimated that 466 million people were affected by cylcones alone. 20.1 million were left homeless, 412,000 people died and 290,000 were injured.
The Australian governments alone spends $6.3 billion dollars a year on disaster mitigation, recovery and response. With natural disasters such as cyclones being unavoidable, governments all around the world are taking these 5 steps towards building more resilient communities:
1. Educating the community on natural hazards and vulnerability
2. Identifying and prioritising key risk areas
3. Researching and developing best practice standards to help future proof communities
4. Identifying cost-effective strategies that will reduce future economic impact on communities in key risk areas and therefore increase life safety and protect infrastructure
5. Creating strategic alliances where business networks and relationships help to advocate the change.
Typhoon Tip started to develop in the Western Pacific in 1979. Tip is recorded as the worlds biggest cyclone and had a diameter of 2,200km, a low pressure system of 870 hPa and winds of 305km/h at its peak. Tip hit the Japanese island of Honshu creating 600 mudslides which destroyed 22,000 homes and tragically claimed 86 lives.
An earthquake is described as the result of an abrupt discharge of energy in the crust of the earth that creates seismic waves. Earthquakes can result in subsequent landslides, tsunamis, rock falls and sometimes, volcanic activity. Earthquakes shake and supplant the ground and are most common along the earth's tectonic plates.
The worst recorded earthquake in history was the 'Great Chilean Earthquake' which occured in 1960 near the coast of Valdivia, Southern Chile. With a magnitude of 9.5, it devastated parts of Chile, Hawaii, Japan, The Philippines, west coast of America, Easter Island and Samoa. Although the total death toll was approximately 6,000 and the damage bill only $1 billion, it is recorded as the worst due to the widespread devastation caused. This earthquake caused tsumanis, massive landslides, rockfalls and violent volcanic eruptions and activity.
Every year the total number of detectable earthquakes is around 500,000. These measure varying magnitudes, earthquakes with a magnitude of 8 or more are recorded at an occurance of 1 per year.
The overall cost to rebuild after an earthquake can vary greatly depending on the severity of the earthquake and when and where it occurs. While some earthquakes result in rebuild costs of around $308 billion, like that of Japan in 2011, others can cause no damage at all.
To reduce future risks, FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) has introduced a specific agency to investigate and reduce the loss and damage caused by earthquakes. This agency researches why and how earthquakes happen and aim to develop and implement action plans, which will result in a reduced death toll and less devastation.
1931 China floods. (2005). Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Retrieved September 1, 2013, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1931_China_floods

2010 Pakistan floods. (2010). Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Retrieved September 5, 2013 , from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2010_Pakistan_floods

Australian Government Bureau of Meteorology (2013). About Tropical Cyclones. [online] Retrieved from: http://www.bom.gov.au/cyclone/about/ [Accessed: 20 Aug 2013].

Australian Government Geoscience Australia (n.d.). What causes earthquakes? - Geoscience Australia. [online] Retrieved from: http://www.ga.gov.au/hazards/earthquakes/earthquake-basics/causes.html [Accessed: 02 Sep 2013].

Brisbane Times (2011). Big Pictures: Earthquake again hits Christchurch. [online] Retrieved from: http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/christchurch-earthquake/ [Accessed: 14 Sep 2013].

British Geological Survey (n.d.). British Geological Survey Seismology Monitoring Page. [online] Retrieved from: http://www.earthquakes.bgs.ac.uk/education/faqs/faq3.html [Accessed: 06 Sep 2013].

Chu, J. (2012). The Cost of Tropical Cyclones - MIT News office. [online] Retrieved from: http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/2012/tropical-cyclones-0117.html [Accessed: 20 Aug 2013].

Components of flood risk [image]. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.cheifscientist.qld.gov.au/publications/understanding-floods/manage-flood-risks.aspx

Doocy, S., Dick, A., Daniels, A. & Kirsch, T. D. (2013). The Human Impact of Tropical Cyclones: A Historical Review of Events 1980-2009 and Systematic Literature Review - PLOS Current. [online] Retrieved from: http://currents.plos.org/disasters/article/the-human-impact-of-tropical-cyclones-a-historical-review-of-events-1980-2009-and-systematic-literature-review/ [Accessed: 20 Aug 2013].

EList10 (n.p.). Top 10 biggest earthquake ever recorded in history. [online] Retrieved from: http://www.elist10.com/top-10-biggest-earthquake-ever-recorded-history/ [Accessed: 12 Sep 2013].

Federal Emergency Management Agency (n.p.). National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program FEMA.gov. [online] Retrieved from: www.fema.gov/national-earthquake-hazards-reduction-program [Accessed: 08 Aug 2013].

Flood. (2002). Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Retrieved August 30, 2013, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flood

Geology.com (n.d.). World Largest Recorded Earthquake. [online] Retrieved from: http://geology.com/records/largest-earthquake [Accessed: 19 Aug 2013].

Gibney, E. (2010). Which countries have had the most tropical cyclone hits? [online] Retrieved from: http://www.aoml.noaa.gov/hrd/tcfaq/E25.html [Accessed: 20 Aug 2013].

Illawarra Mercury Blog (2013). Reducing the cost of natural disasters. [online] Retrieved from: http://www.illawarramercury.com.au/story/1653575/blog-reducing-the-cost-of-natural-disasters/ [Accessed: 20 Aug 2013].

Kamenev, M. (2011). The biggest storms in recorded history - Australian Geographic. [online] Retrieved from: http://www.australiangeographic.com.au/journal/the-10-biggest-storms-in-recorded-history.htm [Accessed: 20 Aug 2013].

Kamenev, K., Pickrell, J. (2011). Cyclones: Facts and figures - Australian Geographic. [online] Retrieved from: http://www.australiangeographic.com.au/journal/how-cyclones-form.htm [Accessed: 20 Aug 2013].

Lami Japan, Kobe Earthquake (2011). Lami Japan. [online] Retrieved from: http://www.lamijapan.com/2011/06/kobe-earthquake.html [Accessed: 14 Sep 2013].

List of Floods. (2007). Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Retrieved September 5, 2013, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_floods

Natural Disasters (n.d.). Retrieved August 30, 2013, from http://www.factmonster.com/ipka/A0775896.html

Natural Hazard News (n.p.). Global Natural Hazard News and Research. [online] Retrieved from: http://naturalhazardnews.wordpress.com/earthquakes/ [Accessed: 19 Aug 2013].

Australian Government. The Treasury. (n.d.). Rebuilding after the floods. Retrieved from www.floodrebuild.treasury.gov.au/floodrebuild/content/default.asp

The Flood Uncovered [Image]. (2012). Retrieved from http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/state-politics/the-flood-uncovered/story/story-e6frgczx-1226302111325

US Global Change Research Program (2008). Hurricances and Climate change. [online] Retrieved from: http://www.usgcrp.gov/usgcrp/links/hurricanes.htm [Accessed: 20 Aug 2013].

WatchMojo.com. (2012, March 20). Top 10 Infamous Natural Disasters of the Last 100 Years [Video file].

Youtube (2011). National Geographic Earthquakes 101. [online] Retrieved from: [Accessed: 12 Sep 2013].
Natural disasters come in many forms from cyclones and earthquakes, to tidal waves, floods and fires, with each disaster carrying the potential to destroy countries and claim lives as seen in many of the extreme cases noted in this presentation. With the loss of lives and infrastructure being the biggest cost, billions of dollars a year are also spent on disaster mitigation strategies to reduce the future impact on communities. With different countries being affected by different natural events, the number of recorded events differs accordingly. Nature is unpredictable and the occurrances of future natural disasters, no matter the form or trigger, are inevitable.
There are many different types of deadly fires
in the world, from man made to natural distasters.
Today we will be focusing on bush fires as they are
the most rampant and dealy fire of them all.
Bush fires rampantly spread over land masses engulfing
anything that may lay in thier path, along with the burning
flames they also produce a toxic smoke.
Bush fires in total would be near impossible to approximate costs
due to damages world wide, as there are so many land masses that
are affected annually and some, multiple times.
However, to get a glimpse of the vast destruction bush fires create,
these are the numbers from one of Australias worst bush fires,
Black Ash Wednesday, Victoria, January- Febuary 2009;
In two months this fire destroyed homes, towns, forrests, killed
live stock and took 201 lives, the total cost of damages from this
fire over the 2 months was $4,369,000,000.
The worst Bushfires in Histroy have spread themselves
over the world, below are the top 5 that caused the
most destruction:

Australia 2009,
201 dead, 1,800 houses lost, 4 major towns destroyed,
7,000 people left homeless.

Greece 2007,
77 dead, 270,000 hectares of farmlands lost.

China 1987,
200 dead, 50,000 left homeless, 3 towns destroyed,
and 1million hectares lost.

France 1949,
82 dead - all rescue workers

USA 1871,
1,000-1,500 dead and 500,000 hectares lost.
When it comes to extreme weather conditions
that create the deadliest bush fires, Australia has
it all. Every summer, states in australia are put on
severe fire warnings, amd burning off restrictions are
set in place to try and limit the destruction.
Australia over takes other fire striken countries, as it
has almost an annual destruction due to bush fires,
Risk reduction measures have been
set in place due to the constant threat
of firesthere are now aids found on the
internet and at local councils to help
people better prepare for fire season.
These pamphlets and booklets advise
of risk factors and how to better prepare
your family and property in fire zones.
In Australia alone there have been
21 major bush fires in the past 50 years,
bush fires occur almost daily worldwide
so it is almost impossible to put a number
on the occurances as only major bush fires
are recorded.
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