Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Understanding the tsunami

20.02.2006


The co-dependence of mortality risk and poverty

The Indian Ocean tsunami, the Katrina hurricane catastrophe and the Pakistan earthquake in late 2005 bear disquieting similarities in their consequences on human populations. The tsunami took 300,000 lives with more than 100,000 still missing. Although many of the missing may well be displaced rather than casualties, the death toll will likely remain in excess of 300,000. Early images from the catastrophe would have lead one to believe that tourist were preferentially impacted, but the world soon learned that this was due to the fact that tourists were the only ones with video equipment at the ready. In fact, the great majority of those who perished were relatively poor people; many of them subsistence level fishermen, and met their fate away from the cameras lens. These people contributed little to the formal economy and because of this the economic impact of the tsunami is unclear. Insured property losses were small not because little property was lost but because so little was insured.

As a result, the tsunami disaster underscores the well-supported observation that people in the lower rungs of society around the world are at far greater mortality risk from natural disasters than those who are better off. The Magnitude 7.6 October 2005 earthquake in Pakistan, for example, took the lives of more than 30,000 people while the Northridge earthquake in California took less than 100 lives. Countries that fall lowest on measures such as the Human Development Index, such as the poorest countries in Africa, are known to suffer much greater losses than richer countries. This is likely due in part to the prevalence of structures and inadequate emergency response institutions, but the vulnerability of the poor is also amplified by where they live, which is often in regions prone to flooding and landslides or in regions susceptible to climate extremes.



Presenter: John Mutter, Deputy Director, The Earth Institute at Columbia University
Track: Mathematics and Statistics
Date: Sunday, February 19, 2006
Time: 10:30 a.m. to 12:00 noon

Ken Kostel | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.earth.columbia.edu

More articles from Earth Sciences:

nachricht GPM sees deadly tornadic storms moving through US Southeast
01.12.2016 | NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

nachricht Cyclic change within magma reservoirs significantly affects the explosivity of volcanic eruptions
30.11.2016 | Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz

All articles from Earth Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

Im Focus: Molecules change shape when wet

Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water

In two recent publications in the Journal of Chemical Physics and in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, researchers around Melanie Schnell from the Max...

Im Focus: Fraunhofer ISE Develops Highly Compact, High Frequency DC/DC Converter for Aviation

The efficiency of power electronic systems is not solely dependent on electrical efficiency but also on weight, for example, in mobile systems. When the weight of relevant components and devices in airplanes, for instance, is reduced, fuel savings can be achieved and correspondingly greenhouse gas emissions decreased. New materials and components based on gallium nitride (GaN) can help to reduce weight and increase the efficiency. With these new materials, power electronic switches can be operated at higher switching frequency, resulting in higher power density and lower material costs.

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE together with partners have investigated how these materials can be used to make power...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

UTSA study describes new minimally invasive device to treat cancer and other illnesses

02.12.2016 | Medical Engineering

Plasma-zapping process could yield trans fat-free soybean oil product

02.12.2016 | Agricultural and Forestry Science

What do Netflix, Google and planetary systems have in common?

02.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>