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

To what extent is the human response to hazards affected by variations in economic resources available

Extracts from this document...


To what extent do states of economic development influence the way people respond to natural hazards. For my essay I will look at many different case studies. I will be comparing different countries and looking at how economic resources resulted in the consequences of the natural hazards. I will look at different types of natural hazard such as earthquakes and tornados, as well as gathering my information from a mixture of MEDC and LEDC countries. The definition for economic according to answers.com is "Of or relating to the production, development, and management of material wealth, as of a country, household, or business enterprise." The definition of Hazard: "A potentially damaging physical event, phenomenon or human activity that may cause the loss of life or injury, property damage, social and economic disruption or environmental degradation." A definition of response: The provision of assistance or intervention during or immediately after a disaster to meet the life preservation and basic subsistence needs of those people affected. It can be of an immediate, short-term, or protracted duration. www.unisdr.org/eng/library/lib-terminology-eng%20home.htm I will begin by looking at earthquakes, and two in particular I feel can help me answer my question are, Bam in Iran and California, both occurring on the same day. A powerful earthquake struck southeastern Iran on December 26, 2003, killing over 43,000 people, injured 20,000, left 60,000 homeless and destroyed much of the city of Bam. ...read more.


People had had prior warning as to what to do in an earthquake situation, i.e. get low and in a place were objects are unlikely to fall. Simple warning like these would have been invulnerable in situations like this and the knowledge that the Americans had far out did the people of Iran who had little idea of what to do in such an emergency. Even though the American government knew the death toll was not high emergency services and NGO's were immediately on hand to help with any injuries sustained. Overall there were very few deaths in California due to prior preparation. This meant that everybody knew what they were doing. Buildings were stable and earthquake proof allowing people to be protected and not risk serious injury. Prior warning to the event ensured that people were ready for the disaster, although they did not know when the earthquake was going to hit, they knew that it might be around that time. In bam however people were not ready for an earthquake and many people lost there lives as there houses fell around them. I will now begin to look at the volcano mount saint Helens and its eruption in 1980, killing 57 people. This case study is an example of how even MEDC countries do not always predict the correct outcomes or even natural hazards at all. ...read more.


As the area is an LEDC people are not aware of the dangers of cutting down trees, which was a main benefactor into why the landslide occurred. In this example the LEDC government ad no way of predicting the landslide but could have made people aware of the dangers and the increased likelihood of landslides if trees are cut down in tropical weather systems. In conclusion I believe that MEDC countries such as the United States deal with hazards on a whole very well, from prediction to after the event. This is without doubt because of the vast amounts of money and resource being thrown at prediction and natural disaster "action plans". Because of the huge funds available, proper research is produced enhancing prediction, meaning that the gap between the technology between MEDC and LEDC is getting bigger. I feel that I now have evidence that nine out of 10 times economic variation can affect hazards a great deal. I feel that economic variation has meant that difference between life and death as we have seen in the case studies. However I feel that on occasion such as hurricane Katrina or Mount Saint Helens, no amount of research or economic resource can prepare you for such disasters. However damage can be minimized by financial backing ultimately meaning that the frequency of huge death tolls and huge amounts of damage in MEDC is dramatically decreased. ...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. Marked by a teacher

    Explain the increasing frequency of Hydro-meteorological Hazards.

    3 star(s)

    It is suggested that, some hydro-meteorological hazards, such as floods and windstorms are increasing in frequency, due to global warming. The idea behind this is that the increasing warming of the earth causes warm air to rise, creating convection currents and then hurricanes.

  2. Los Angeles: An Area of Multiple Hazards.

    programmes often provide information about crime rate but they are much more likely to show bias. They often link crime with drug trafficking and poverty, both of which are also human hazards, . These hazards are not spread equally amongst the community.

  1. comparing shrewsbury an old town an telfrd a purpose build new town

    The landuse maps also show where each type of shop is. My landuse maps can be found on pages...... In Mardol there are about four or five charity shops. These are low order shops; the rent is cheap which is good for this type of shop.

  2. Free essay

    To what extent do the causes of mass movement hazards depend more on human ...

    For example, on slopes where recreational activities occur, such as walking and climbing on mountains, damage the slope over a long period of time, and the damage gradually gets worse. Farming the land also damages the land and destabilises the slope as the ground is constantly being tampered with.

  1. Explain Why Some Hazards Have Resulted In More Loss Of Life Than Others

    Regarding this particular case study, it shows relatively low death levels due to a few factors. The major factor is the fact that viable warning systems were in place at the time and people expected a disaster and so was on edge.

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

    However the reality is that due to the number of disasters that occurs in this place it is heavily dependent on NGO?s and aid from foreign countries like China, this however is unlike the case in California, who can support themselves during an hazard.

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

    This also left nearly all of Haiti?s commercial buildings out of use further damaging the economy to a state where it still hasn?t recovered (BBC, 2011). However, if a country has a relatively high level of development then they are in a better position to have community preparedness projects, earthquake proof designed buildings and emergency services.

  2. Volcanic and seismic events are major pieces of evidence towards proving that plate-tectonics theory ...

    If the ocean basins were as old as the continents, we would expect deep-sea sediments to be several kilometers thick. However, data from numerous drill holes indicate that deep-sea sediments are at most only a few hundred meters thick and are thin or absent at oceanic ridges.

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