• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Natural hazards.

Extracts from this document...


Introduction: Natural hazards include a wide variety of phenomena ranging from geomorphic events (landslips, erosion) through climatic events (storm, flood, drought) to tectonic events (earthquakes, volcanoes). Natural hazards can be difficult to define because (i) their causes may not be entirely natural and (ii) the degree of hazard posed may depend as much on the nature of society as on the nature of the hazard. An essay on the causes of hazards needs to take account of the social, cultural and economic causes as well as the physical causes. These "socio-economic" causes may include * access to information * access to wealth * quality of building construction * choices in building location * expectations and preparedness * perceived risks from the hazard * perceived benefits from living in the area * human impacts through land use and infrastructure developments (eg deforestation, building or road construction) ...read more.


Likewise, the more fully atmospheric processes are understood the greater the potential for more focussed monitoring (using remote sensing) and more reliable predictions. Our understanding of tectonic hazards has increased enormously with the development of plate tectonic theory. Further improvements in understanding can only aid the prediction of where, when and how violently events will take place. A final consideration to develop in this essay is how a better understanding of the socioeconomic processes may in fact enable us to better predict the impact of a hazard and offer the best chances for reducing risks by reducing the vulnerability of society. Main Section * 1) Geomorphic hazards - main types of failure (rotational landslip, mudflow etc) and causes; case studies to demonstrate cause, scale and impacts. ...read more.


Assess the role of socio-economic processes/factors. Eg: Kobe earthquake 1995 etc etc Conclusion: Hazards are extremely variable ranging from (refer back to case study) to (refer back to case study). Families of hazards may share similar causes (eg tectonic, climatic - refer back to case studies). As important as the physical causes are the human causes that may help trigger the hazard or worsen its impact (refer back to case studies). By understanding hazard processes more fully it is possible to predict the onset of the hazard and/or the scale of the event (refer back to case studies). Finally, more fruitful progress may come from studying human vulnerability and changing society rather than simply studying hazards and trying to modify their physical impacts. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Hazardous Environments section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Hazardous Environments essays

  1. What is an environmental (natural) hazard?

    but there is still the need for better building design and construction to reduce economic costs of disaster. As the world population increases and people live longer, the potential for devastating effects increases. Aid - giving humanitarian aid to poorer countries under threat is a short-term solution.

  2. With reference to a range of hazards, assess the success of prediction techniques in ...

    Avalanches therefore occur on mainly 25- 40-degree slopes. In tourist areas avalanches pose a great risk and people are becoming increasingly vulnerable. Death and injury from avalanches are the result of pressure of snow, inhaling powdery snow, hypothermia, exhaustion, frostbite and shock. Avalanches are often very difficult to predict and the only real method is by scientists looking at the patterns of snow on the mountains.

  1. Assess the relative merits of classifying hazards by their spatial occurrence and by their ...

    Spatial occurrence as a classification accepts that not all hazards occur in every part of the world. It is too cold for hurricanes in the artic regions, blizzards don not occur in tropical areas. These physical parameters are good classifications because it helps us to define the risks associated with the hazard occurring.

  2. Why Are Natural Hazards Rarely Completely Natural?

    added to the surface runoff into the stream and worsened the flooding situation. This cannot alone be blamed for the events, but it may have added to the fact that it was not an entirely natural occurrence. The flooding of Boscastle quickly escalated from a natural process to a natural hazard.

  1. With Relation to different natural disasters, discuss their impacts and how they may vary ...

    collapsed while their inhabitants slept, many people were crushed to death. This was not helped also by the fact that the area in which the earthquake occurred, the Maharashtra had recently undergone significant population growth, and so many people where living in houses they had constructed themselves out of scrap material, unsupervised and without permission of the authorities.

  2. California and the Phillippines - Hazard Hotspots and Human Management of Risks

    Seismometers monitoring earthquakes often pick up large clusters of earthquakes before and immediately after a volcanic eruption. Gases may seep from fissures in the surface known as vents or fumaroles. The temperature of Lake Taal, for example, rose from 33o C in June 1965 to 45o C by the end of July 1965.

  1. To what extent is magnitude the main factor to influence the type and level ...

    Although Israel is not as prone to earthquakes as Japan which could result in them having a higher vulnerability, as people do not perceive there to be a risk and less is invested into managing such a hazard. However, as the magnitude of the earthquake was such a low one

  2. Explain why tectonic processes produce a variety of contrasting landscapes 70 marks

    About 80 million years ago India was located ~6,400km south of Asia, moving northward at a rate of about 9 meters per century (Two Continents Collide USGS). When India collided with Asia it?s northward progress slowed by about half; the associated decrease in plate movement is thought to mark the beginning of the rapid uplift of the Himalayas.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work