Philippines case study AS Geography


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  • Created on: 08-05-12 17:10
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Consists of 7,000 islands
Has over 91,000 inhabitants
Developing at a very rapid rate
Has a GDP of $5000 per capita making it a low to middle income country.
It's northern and eastern coasts face the Pacific Ocean, which is the most tsunami
prone ocean ­ makes the country vulnerable as a lot of people live along the coastline.
It lies with SouthEast Asia's major typhoon belt.
Located at a destructive subduction zone, the denser Eurasian plate subducts beneath
the less dense Philippines plate. This caused the Manila Ocean trench. Also, it causes
volcanic activity due to friction between the plates and therefore causing heat, and
causing the Eurasian plate to melt and form magna, which then erupts as a volcano. It
also causes earthquakes because as the plates meet they jerk, which causes a
buildup pressure which leads to an earthquake taking place.
Social factors
There's a high population density of 240 people per square kilometre.
The residents live on steepsloping land which acts as a funnel to precipitation and
therefore making the area more vulnerable and prone to hydrometeorological hazards.
Mountains are prone to landslides and therefore making mountainous regions prone to
damaged houses and economic instability.
Previous disasters
June 1991 ­ Volcanic eruption ­ Mount Pinatubo
First eruption led to a 20km ash cloud, which buried 800 hectares of farmland, disrupted
the livelihoods of 500,000 farmers and led to $710 million economic damage, mainly on
agriculture and property.
Second eruption led to lahars and pyroclastic flows, and 77 people died.
2006 ­ Earthquake.
Magnitude 2.6 on the Richter scale.
Caused local tsunami 3 metres high, and then a landslide which breached the crater
wall of the Parker volcano, which caused flooding and damaged 800 buildings.
February 2006 ­ Guinsaugon Landslide.
Guinsaugon is the central village of the Philippines and was engulfed by a mudslide.
Caused by torrential rain, which was unusual as February is normally a dry month.
The torrential rain was caused by La Nina, and was worsened by the high amounts of
deforestation, mainly for logging.
Protection methods
To prevent economic damage, the government set up land use planning and
building regulations in areas susceptible to damage.
The government set up organisations for hazard risk assessment and educated the
local people about hazard risk and how to react when a disaster occurs to prepare
them. An example of an organisation is the Philippines Atmospheric.


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