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Explain why some physical environments attract more human activity than others

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Introduction

Geography essay Explain why some physical environments attract more human activity than others. (25 marks) Human activity can be defined as the actions of people, and can be categorised into settlement, agriculture, industry, communication and tourism. Human activity can be dependant on the development of a location, and this can be directly linked to the physical environment. Each physical environment can provide opportunities and risks to humans and human activity, and dictates the level and type of activity present. To explain why this is, I intend to discuss three different physical environments, including tectonics, coastal and fluvial; the way in which they affect human activity in all categories. Tectonic locations have a large influence over in which human activity is situated. One main feature of tectonics is volcanic activity. Volcanoes occur in various areas all over the world, but the nature of the volcanic activity dictates the way it can be utilised or to the extent to which it is a hazard. If the volcano is on a small scale, hardly if ever erupting then it is likely there will be a lot of human activity present. Most human activity around volcanoes drops into the agricultural category. ...read more.

Middle

An example which combines both volcanic and earthquake activity would be Mt. Pinatubo in the Philippines, 1991. There was an initial volcanic eruption which created a lot of damage. The evacuation zone was 40km, and no wonder as 300 deaths were counted, 8000 houses were destroyed, 73000 damaged, 800000 livestock were killed and there were also damage to the healthcare due to the spread of disease. The countries GDP fell by 3% in one year. When looking at coastal areas the human activity differs greatly in use than that of tectonic areas. Coastal areas have a much more beneficial use, especially in MEDCs. Industry is a main land use, being near to the sea provides major communication links and trading points. A country can really benefit from this, and an MEDC utilises it to gain cheap but necessary materials from the LEDCs (who in turn also benefit). The fishing industry in less economically developed countries is quite successful. The land is also fertile, much like the tectonic areas. This is great for agriculture and linked with the ports can provide a steady income for farmers. A coastal area is beautiful scenery, and never fails to attract tourism. ...read more.

Conclusion

The lack of settlement on surrounding areas results in few casualties and little damage at all. After looking at the three main physical environments I can see that the human activity present depends greatly on whether the location is an MEDC or an LEDC. In all three environments the supply of fertile soils for agricultural purposes and the attraction for industry and tourism have major effect on an LEDC and an MEDC. These factors create a good economy and a stable food source so it is a necessity however much the country is developed. When it comes to an LEDC the more risky and dangerous areas such as tectonics seem to have a lot more human activity. The dangers involved simply don't match up to the economy and need for stable food; the affects are also less compared to an MEDC, where the dangers are more risky and easily avoided. A fluvial environment creates a good agricultural source but lacks in all other aspects for human activity to thrives, which is mainly why farmers are situated here. Settlements are greatly attracted to those that oppose threat and provide day to day amenities. The ideal location for human activity in MEDCs is definitely on the coast. For LEDCs it has to tectonic areas. ?? ?? ?? ?? Ryan Moore ...read more.

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