GCSE Geography Case Studies OCR B

All the Case Studies for OCR B 2016-Population and Settlement, Natural Hazards and Economics

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China's One Child Policy

Background: In the 1950's the Chinese Government persuaded people to have large families so that they'd have a bigger army. It meant that the population was growing by 55 million every 3 years.

Policy: Started in 1979, aimed at majority ethnicity-the Han. Families with 1 child got extra benefits such as free child care, health care benefits, better education and better housing. Families with more than 1 child were heavily fined.

Successes of Policy: Birth rate fell from 31 to 19 in 20 years. The overall population is 250million less than it would've been, and much fewer people are starving.

Failings of Policy: Boys are preferred, so many girls are killed or abandoned-there's now 30 million more men than women. Created "little emperors", spoilt children unable to work with others.

Sustainability of Policy: Orphanages had to be built for abandoned girls. In the future there will be thousands more people over 66, who will have fewer people to support them. The "4-2-1" problem is where the only child will have to look after 2 parents and 4 grandparents which will be very difficult.

Relaxation: Since 2000, if 2 only children marry they may have 2 children. All rural families may have 2 children. Women have an informed choice between contraception types now.

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Migration from Mexico to the USA

Background/Basics: 3000km border between the two countries, around 2 million Mexicans migrate to the USA every year, and illegal migration is a huge problem.

Measures to deal with immigration: US Border Patrol guards border but it's a huge area to cover, a wall's been built on some areas, US citizens are fined for employing illegal Mexicans.

Pull factors to the USA: Excellent medical facilities-420 people per doctor, jobs are better paid-GDP is $31,806, literacy rates are high and life expectancy is 77 years, they can earn a years wages in Mexico in 3 months in the USA.

Push factors from Mexico: Poor medical facilities-621 people per doctor, GDP is low at $3750 and 40% of Mexicans are unemployed.

Impacts on the USA: Costs millions of dollars for border patrols and prisons, causes cultural and racial issues in cities, Mexicans are seen as a drain on US economy, their culture has enriched the border with food, language and music.

Impacts on the Mexico: Mexican countryside has a shortage of economically active people, more men migrate leaving women without partners behind, send back around $6 billion a year.

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Rural to Urban Migration in LEDC's-NE to SE Brazil

Background: People travel from rural Pernambuco in NE Brazil to Rio de Janeiro in SE Brazil.

Push Factors: People have been displaced by building dams and reservoirs along the Sao Francisco River, deforestation has lead to soil erosion so it's difficult to farm, lack of education, unreliable rainfall means food supply is unreliable.

Pull Factors: Rio is Brazil's second largest city and has lots of job opportunities, lots more educational opportunities, better services, major events held there, wealth is higher.

Effects on Rio: Shanty towns/Favela's are sprouting up everywhere as most migrants can't afford to live near the middle of the city. The richer people live in the central business district (CBD.)

Rocinha: Largest Favela in Brazil, on the "South Zone" of Rio. There is a lot of crime-drugs and gangs are common, at times the army are called in to deal with it. Houses are built badly (mainly wooden shacks) and are cramped together-they cost £290. Most electricity is hijacked from mains supplies, and there are high unemployment levels as jobs are mainly available outside the area, not within. However, the informal sector where people have started their own businesses is booming, and there is a huge sense of community there.

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Trying to relieve problems in Favela's

Strategy 1: Building new settlements using self-help schemes. People can buy or rent new homes. The city authorities provide basic building materials and groups of workers work together to build them, thus increasing employability.

Strategy 2: Site and Service Schemes. The authorities clear a sit and put in all the basic infrastructures such as water, sewage and electricity. The buildings are put together by the families.

Strategy 3: New towns. As Rio is between the sea and the mountains, there's nowhere for it to expand to so new towns are being built along the coasts to take off pressure. Wealthier middle class families move to these to escape the poverty that surrounds them and it is much more modern and well policed. Therefore, as they move out of Rio, families from the favela's can move into their houses.

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Greenwich Millennium Village-Change in Urban Areas

Background: Located in the South East of Greater London. It was once part of the London Docklands on the south bank of the Thames.

Aims of Project: 80% reduction in primary energy consumption, 50% reduction in embodied energy, 50% reduction in construction waste, 30% redcution in water use, 30% reduction in construction costs.

Essentials of Village: 76 hectares of land, mixed land use, 2,700 new homes in small neighbourhood districts with 20% being affordable starter houses, lots of pedestrian and cyclist routes only, 2.2km of river walkways, 24,000 new jobs and good travel access.

Sustainability of the Village: Rain is recyled to water plants and used in toilets, supermarkets use solar and wind power to power themselves, the village houses are well insulated to keep heat in and are sheltered from cold winds with energy saving appliances, encouraged not to use cars with good public transport access, lots of recycling and lots of open spaces.

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Retail Change in an Urban Area-Giltbrook Retail Pa

Background: On the A610 dual carriageway, used to have IKEA, Decathlon and Next.

Essentials of Development: Site was already 60,000sq.ft, 150,000sq.ft added. Investment was around £70million. Additional shops built in 2009-10. 1,000 new jobs were created and new public transport links put in place. New multi-storey car park.

Why the retail park was developed: Located close to motorway providing easy access, IKEA and Comet sell imported goods and motorway provides easy truck access. Large area of flat land so it's easy to build on.

Problems from the new development: Increased congestion on M1 and A610, especially at weekends. Decathlon want to expand onto green belt site. Shops in nearby towns end up closing.

Sustainability of development: Roof mounted wind turbines installed, recycled water used for toilets, 50,000l tank for collecting rainwater, recycled materials used.

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LEDC Tectonics Hazard-Sichuan Earthquake China

Background: Monday 12th May 2008, 2:28pm local time. 7.9 on the Richter Scale, lasted for 2 minutes. The Indo-Australian plate is pushing into the Eurasian plate and pressure built too much. Effects extended 240km across China, but tremors were felt 1700km away in Shanghai.

Effects: 69,172 dead, 374,159 injured, 45.61 million affected, 15 million relocated, 21 million homes damaged, 7.3 million sq.m of barns collapsed, 15 million buildings collapsed, 5000km of pipes damaged, 80 tons of liquid ammonia spilt. Landslides occured as a result.

Long Term Effects(1 year on): Some areas still inaccesible to aid workers, new schools being built, people still in refugee camps, many homes rebuilt but thousands haven't been yet. They spent $137.5billion making it the second most costly earthquake ever recorded.

Aid: Government gave 27 million Yuan (£2million) from it's emergency relief fund. Red Cross of China brought in 557 tents and 2,500 quilts for bedding. Saudi Arabia donated €40 million. Sichuan Ministry of Civil Affairs provided 30,000 tents for the homeless. 

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MEDC Volcano-Mount Etna

Background: Located on the Eastern side of Sicily, Europe's most active volcano. People still live on Etna though, because fertile volcanic souls give good agriculture. It is also good for snow/skiing in winter and has a lot of tourism around it.

Impacts of 2002/03: In 2002, clouds of ash and gas came from two vents, that then spewed lava over 100m in the air. It flowed down the mountain and damaged farms and engulfed a restaurant. The longest lava flow was 6.9km long. Catania airport had to be closed for 4 days as ash in the atmosphere could clog airplane engines. 1000 people had to leave their homes, schools were closed, and ash drifted 600km away, to Libya.

Measures to deal with Impact: The town of Lingualossa was evacauted due to lava threat, and a state of emergency was declared by the government. Rescue workers diverted lava flow from the scientific research building at the foot of the mountain. by making a channel to divert it. Tax breaks were given to businesses affected. $8million given in aid.

Physical Causes: Mt Etna is above a destructive plate margin. The African Plate is sliding underneath the Eurasian plate, causing magma to be pushed up. It has the longest history of recorded eruptions of any volcano in the world.

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LEDC Volcano-Soufriere Hills, Montserrat

Background: The Soufriere Hills volcano is an active volcano that became active in 1995, and has been eversince. It's eruptions have made more than 2/3 of Montserrat uninhabitable and have destroyed the capital city, Plymouth.

Physical causes of eruptions: North and South American Plates were being subducted under the Caribbean Plate. Pyroclastic flows did the most damage as they destroyed most buildings and flowed down the mountain sides at huge speeds.

Damage Caused: As well as destroying the capital city, it destroyed the islands airport and also the only hospital on the island, hence why most of the population relocated.

Short Term Responses: Scientists monitored the volcano and set up warning systems such as radio, sirens and loudspeakers. The UK government sent £17million of emergecy aid including temporary buildings and water purification systems. Charities set up temporary schools and the USA sent troops to help evacuate people.

Long Term Responses: 10 years later the south of the island was still out of bounds, but people began to move back. The UK funded a 3 year redevelopment plan costing £122.8million.

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MEDC Tropical Storm-Hurricane Katrina, Louisiana

Background: Mainly hit New Orleans although it also hit Mississippi, Tennessee and Florida Began on 23rd August 2005, reached land for the first time on the 25th as a hurricane. Strengthened over the Gulf of Mexico and 28th became Category 5 with 282kph winds. Reached New Orleans on the 29th. Ocean temperatures were at 27°C up to a depth of 60m, which caused the storm to form originally.

Impacts: Levees and flood walls broke in 53 places meaning the water was 3m deep. Heavy rain made it worse-around 80% of the city was flooded. Deaths reached 1836 and over 10,000 people were made homeless. Food shortages and no access to clean water. Major roads in and out of the city were damaged. 1.3million acres of forest destroyed. Gas and oil production down 75% afterwards.

Dealing with Impact: 27th August a state of emergency was declared. 28th 1.2million people were given evacuation orders. 47,000 members of the National Guard sent to help. $7.5billion spent on repairing the levees. Most were completed by 2008.

Problems: The levees were only built to withstand category 3 hurricanes. Parts of the city are 10ft under sea level. The freeways were jammes with people trying to evacuate, public transport stopped.

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LEDC Tropical Storm-Cyclone Nargis, Myanmar 2008

Background:  The tropical system developed from a low pressure system in the Bay of Bengal. On 27th April, it was declared a tropical depression on 27th April. By 2 May, it had made its way to a Category 4 hurricane, and had peak winds of 135mph. It made landfall in southern Myanmar the same day, but moved along the coast so didn't weaken as it should've done.

Effects: $10billion worth of damage. 75% of buildings collapsed-95% on the river delta. Rice fields were flooded and the harvests for the next two years destroyed. Storm surge of 7.6m and 135mph winds.Floodwaters reached 40-50km inland. Lack of food and water and many children were orphaned. Estimated that at least 2.4million people were severely effected, and structural damage was extensive.

Responses: Initial response was shocking. The military government didn't want foreign people in their country, so refused aid. After 6 days of the storm being on land, the Mynamar representative from the US formally asked the UN for help. They allowed it, but made huge restrictions and limited aid to food, medicine and basic supplies. Foreign aid workers were still banned from the country.

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Drought in Ethiopia 2006

Physical Causes: Ethiopia has average temperatures of 28°C-30°C. Rainfall is unreliable, and in 2006 the short rains in February and the long rains in June both failed to come. Since 1985, 77% of Ethiopia's tree cover has been cut down.

Impacts of Drought: 85% of people in Ethiopia rely on agriculture to survive. The Afar and Issa tribes grew desperate and fought over grazing land for cattle. Food prices rose by 130% and there was a huge food shortage and lack of money to import food. A huge number of animal carcasses in the Awash River caused outbreaks of cholera and as people were already weak from lack of food they were more susceptible to disease. Over 6 million people needed immediate food aid.

Measures to Deal with Impact: In the short term, most measures came from relief aid and UNICEF spent $16million on this. In development aid, they drilled boreholes to provide water supplies, built sand dams to trap water from seasonal rivers and trained people in water hygiene.

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Palm Oil in Indonesia and Malaysia

Background: SE Asia. Over half of Malaysia's cultivated land is palm oil plantations. It produces 18million tonnes of palm oil, and Indonesia produces 20million tonnes. Palm oil is found in at least 1 in 10 of the goods we buy from supermarkets and is growing fast.

Advantages of area for Palm Oil Plantation: Average temperatures of 25-28°C which is perfect for palm oil. It has rainfall of 2000-4000mm per year and lots of wide, flat, untouched valleys. There's cheap labour, major western companies prepared to invest, and government help.

Palm Oil Problems: Wages are low and workers can be exploited. Native people are thrown off land to make way for the plantations, as well as huge areas of biologically diverse rainforest being cut down.

Benefits to Malaysia: Creates employment, gets lots of foreign earnings from the export of palm oil, growing wealth means workers become better off.

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Manufacturing Cars in Slovakia

Background: Located in Zilina, Bratislava and Trnava. 

Advantages for Industry: Relatively low labour costs compared to Western Europe. It's central for cheap transport. Has a dense network of railway lines and ship connections. The government is very stable so there's a low risk to industry. There's huge markets and there is a well educated and easily trained workforce.

Examples of Car Industry in Slovakia: Zilina does Kia and Hyundai cars. Employs 2,700 people and opened in 2006. Bratislava does Volkswagen, Audi, Porsche, Skoda and SEAT. Employs 10,000 people and opened in 1991.Trnava does Peugeot and Citroen and employs 3,048 people. Opened in 2006.

Benefits to Slovakia: Creates employment. Lots of foreign earnings from car exports. Workers become better off and can afford consumer goods.

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Nike In Vietnam

Background: Nike is a typical TNC. Its Headquarters and  Research and Development are in the US. Its factories are in LEDC's, including 34 in Vietnam. 75% of Nike's workforce is in Asia. It also subcontracts its factories, so they don't have to take responsibility if it's a sweatshop.

Benefits for Vietnam: Creates a lot of employment. Nike factories offer higher wages than other factories. Average earnings are £40 a month, 20% more than the national wage. A large factory near Ho Chi Minh City emplys 14,000 people a month. Nike workers also get extra benefits like health services, stocked canteens, clothing and transportation.

Problems in Vietnam: Wages are still low and most have to work long overtime hours. Many have accused Nike of exploitation in sweatshops, and it has too much political influence over the Vietnamese.

Problems for MEDC's: Jobs are being lost in the US, as factories are moved abroad.

Benefits for MEDC's: Consumers get cheaper products and Nike gets more profit so benefits its shareholders.

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Impact of Manufacturing Industry on a Environment

Background: Located in the Guangdong Province and Hong Kong SE China. The Pearl River drains into the South China Sea. 120million people live in the region and it's rapidly rising.

Examples of Industry: Guangzhou is pharmaceuticals, chemical plants and a Honda plant. Shunde is the largest microwave manufacturer in the world. Shenzen produces 70% of the worlds photocopiers. 

Problems from Industry: Air pollution means that two thirds of the cities suffer from acid rain. Factories and cars have also increased the levels of ground ozone. Water pollution is also a problem as half of the water from the main cities isn't treated before being dumped in the river. In 2009, five factories were found to be discharginghazardous minerals into rivers-the chemicals were carcogenic.

Management Plans: Guangdond's government has pledged to reduce sulphur dioxide pollution by 15%. In 2007, the World Bank loaned $96million to clean up the rivers sewage problems. They have tougher national regulations on car emissions now, and are promoting ow sulphur fuels such as LPG. Hong Kong is controlling power station emissions.

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