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Global Hazards.
What are the main types of physical risks facing the world & how big a threat are they?
Physical risks facing the world today are...
Global warming.
Climate change.
Flooding ­ sea level rise.
Storm surges.
Forest fires.
Natural hazard : is naturally occurring that is threatening people, prone to danger (physical threat) e.g. Mount Vesuvius.
Disaster: when the physical threat becomes a reality e.g. volcano eruption.
Risk: the probability of a disaster occurring.…read more

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How a hazard becomes a disaster.
If a hazard happens & significantly effects vulnerable humans it is a disaster.
Specific risks from global hazards.
Decreasing in severity as list descends.
1. Hazards to people.
Death & severe injury.
Disease & stress.
2. Hazards to goods.
Economic loss.
Infrastructure damage.
3. Hazards to the environment.
Loss of flora & fauna (plants & animals).
Why would you live in a high risk area?
No choice - cheap land e.g. shanty towns.…read more

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Importance of Vulnerability.
Impacts of hazard are relative to the vulnerability than the hazards strength. People remain exposed to risk
for a variety of reasons.
Vulnerable people can't afford to build well even if building regulations are enforced.
Rapid urbanisation has forced the poor into high risk areas of cities.
Changing risk ­ rising sea levels mean that safe areas are now prone to flooding & storm surges. Deforestation
of watersheds reduces interception & increases the risk of flooding.
Cost vs. Benefits ­ e.g.…read more

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Socioeconomic impacts of a 2C global temperature change;
53% of the Arctic tundra lost.
Polar bears wiped out in their Arctic homeland.
The ice sheet covering 80% of Greenland in irreversible retreat.
The end of the Inuit hunting culture due to disappearing prey & habitat.
An increase in insect borne diseases, which claims 1.3 million lives each year.
Crop yields in Africa drop 10%. Yields fall for the first time since the Agricultural Revolution.
80% of South Africa's unique collection of wild flowers disappears.…read more

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There are 3 main types of Geophysical hazard:
Volcanoes, Earthquakes ­ primary hazards ­ vast quantities of energy released very quickly and usually suddenly.
and secondary hazards Tsunamis ­ caused by earthquake under the ocean.
Earthquake hazards: shallow quakes near the surface cause the most shaking and damage.
Primary hazards: ground movement and shaking
Secondary hazards: landslides, avalanches, tsunamis, exposure to adverse weather = increased death toll.…read more

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Indentifying Hazard Hotspots.
Hazard hotspots; are likely to occur where plate boundaries meet storm belts in areas of high population, covering all of
the following...
Tectonic hazards or localised geomorphic hazards e.g. Landslide potential.
Hydro-meteorological hazards.
Vulnerability; number, density, wealth ect.
Map shows global disaster hotspots are found:
Along plate boundaries.
Within the hurricane belt.
With majority along the coastline.
Countries that have little capacity to cope.
El Nino Southern Oscillation & La Nina.
`The most catastrophic weather phenomenon's on earth'.…read more

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Warmer winter temperatures in S.E. USA.
· Colder winter temperatures from N.W. Pacific to the Great Lakes.
· Unsettled winters in N.E. & mid Atlantic U.S. states.
· Increase in Hurricanes in Caribbean & Southern USA.
· Been linked to floods in Bangladesh e.g. 1998.
· Droughts in mid-western USA.
Predicting.…read more

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Retreating glaciers: Glaciers can be tracked by looking at past maps as well as looking at where rocks have
been deposited from it ­ these rocks can then be dated to show when they were deposited. Most glaciers have
retreated since 1850 ­ the end of the Little Ice Age.
Short term climate change.
The temperature has risen sharply over the past 1000 years ­ global warming.…read more

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Mitigation ­ policies which are meant to delay, reduce or prevent climate changes caused by global warming ­ such as
cutting CO2 emissions and increasing carbon sinks
Adaptation ­ policies, which are designed to reduce the existing impacts of global warming, such as protection against
flooding and coastal erosion.…read more


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