Natural Hazards and Disasters: Causes, Consequences and Management with Mitigation Strategies
Natural hazards is the threat of a natural occurrence on the society and environment. It is a natural environmental phenomena and not caused by humans. It has a negative impact on the environment and human health.
Natural disasters is the catastrophic events actually occurring which was a threat earlier. It damages and causes harm to the society severely in many ways. These events are highly harmful for the society and human life.
Types of Natural Hazards
The types of natural hazards are as follows:
1). Geophysical Hazard
Geological hazard are those that originate from solid earth. Examples are earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions.
2). Hydrological Hazard
Hydrological hazard caused by the movement and distribution of the surface freshwater.Examples are floods and heavy rainfall or snow.
3). Meteorological Hazard
Meteorological hazard occur for a short period of time due to extreme weather conditions. Examples are storms and cyclones.
4). Climatological Hazard
Climatological hazard occurs for a long time, depending upon the climate. It is either due to long periods of heat or hot temperature. Examples are wildfires and droughts.
5). Biological Hazard
Biological hazard occur when exposed to living organisms and diseases carried by them.Examples are pandemics and epidemics.
Causes of Natural Disasters
The causes of natural disasters are the following:
1). Global Warming
Global warming is a major contributor of natural disasters. Global warming increases the earth’s temperature which results in rising sea levels, melting of glaciers, unpredictable weather conditions, etc. Hence, global warming leads to frequent occurrence of hurricanes and tropical storms
Deforestation is the cutting down of trees and forests help to reduce the occurrence of floods and droughts by holding back the groundwater. With deforestation increasing, it causes higher chances of natural catastrophes.
3). Tectonic Movement
The moving or colliding of the earth’s tectonic plates leads to natural disasters. Catastrophic events such as earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, and tsunami are some of the results of tectonic movements.
Consequences of Natural Hazards and Natural Disasters
The consequences of natural hazards and natural disasters are:
Earthquakes are one of the most severe effects of natural disaster on humans and the society. It is the most destructive in nature which results in taking lives of several humans, destroying homes and various infrastructures, and destructing the society in various ways.
Floods occur during rainy season when there is excess rainfall. Floods as well end up ruining several homes and infrastructures.
Landslides are the movement of rock, debris, and mud down a slope in high speed and volume that results in ruining several homes and sometimes taking lives of people.
Other consequences of natural disasters are volcanic eruptions, cyclones, droughts, avalanche, tornadoes, tsunami, wildfires, etc.
Management of Natural Hazards and Natural Disasters with Mitigation Strategies
The management of natural hazards and disasters can be done with the following steps:
• Raising awareness about the dangers of these hazards and disasters on humans and the community to the people and how to address them.
• Educating people on how to react and keep themselves safe during the occurrence of different forms of disasters.
• Hazard identification and vulnerability analysis.
• Hazard mitigation activities and projects.
• Proper planning and construction of the infrastructures, and creating effective disaster plans. .
• Installing and strengthening warning systems.