Geographical Case Studies

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  • Created by: Ellie
  • Created on: 25-03-13 08:01

MEDC River Flood-Boscastle, Cornwall, UK

Causes-On 16th August 2004 there was a flash flood in Boscastle. The rain began falling at 12:30 and 9 minutes later a flood watch was issued. The amount of water that fell reached 500mm in 4 hours, creating a tidal wave of 40mph. 1.4billion litres of water fell in 2 hours, almost 200,000 litres per second. The catchment area of the two rivers is small which means the water is funneled towards the village. The ground was saturated and couldn't absorb any more water into it so there was surface run-off.

Effects-people lost their homes (50), loss of income and property, pollution in the sea, loss of livelihood, broken river walls, mud everywhere, 25 business properties destroyed, 4 foot bridges washed away.

Responses-SHORT-TERM: People were safely evacuated, as this event happened during the day. Emergency Services were immediately on the scene to support. Helicopters airlifted many people from rooftops. Search and Rescue teams hunted for anybody trapped. 

LONG-TERM: Lower river bed by 0.75m so more water can be held, widen span bridge soe the river can be wider, new flood defence wall which is stronger to protect village better, raise car-park so cars are above flood level, remove trees close to river so the won't block up the river and a new flood defence wall. 

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LEDC River Flooding-Bangladesh 1998

Bangladesh is almost 80% river floodplains and less than 10m above sea level, and a large number of its 120 million citizens live there. There are 4 main rivers in the country and many people live on small islands called Chars. This flood was the worst one this century.

CAUSES-Bangladesh is heavily in debt so there is no money to spend on flood prevention projects. Heavy monsoon rains between May and October cause river levels to rise. Many of the exisiting flood defences do not work.

EFFECTS-Over 400 factories closed, 1040 people died, 23.5 million people made homeless, 6500 bridges damaged and destroyed, some areas under water for over 2 months, 2.5 million farmers were effected, 250,000 effected with diarrhoea and 11,000 km of roads damaged.

RESPONSES-Oxfam Community Preparedness Programme-Cluster villages above 2m sea level with 25-30 families, 2 hectares of raised land for livestock and room for 100 families, boats around areas at risk of more flooding. Hard Engineering Strategies-There was not enough money to make many flood defences. Other Responses-government worked with people to get food aid to people, emergency relief items were distributed, UN sent in a disaster management team and farmers were provided with seeds and tools to start farming again.

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A river valley and its land forms-River Tees, York

The source of the River Tees is Cross Fell-the highest point on the Pennine moorland at 893m above sea level. The area has over 2000mm of precipitation a year. Inflitration rates are low, resulting in a wide area of saturated peat bog. Water drains out of this in small streams. 

Cross Fell:V-Shaped valley, interlocking spurs. High force waterfall, gorges and rapids. Joined by many tributaries throughout its course. Large meanders close to the village of Yarm. The river meanders through a wide flood plain before reaching the estuary, where building development has taken place alongside the river embankment to reduce the risk of flooding. There is lots of industry on the flat land around the estuary of the river Tees. At its mouth the river enters the North Sea. The Tees has a wide tidal estuary with sand banks and mud flats. Many of the natural features of the estuary have been adapted to suit the needs of heavy industry and shipping. 

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An aid project in an LEDC-WATERAID IN MALI

An NGO is a non governmental organisation that direct aid towards sustainable development. 

Mali is in Western Africa. It has a harsh nature climate and falling rain levels. 65% of the country is either desert or semi-desert. 

Appropriate technology is the level of technology and skills required to service things donated to the country that they are able to use. 

In Mali, WaterAid has financed the constructing of the area's water network. They are training local people to manage and maintain the system and raise money needed to keep it in operation. They encourage the community to invest in its own infrastructure. The aim was to get the country to be able to sustain their own water. 

The aid is sustainable in Mali because they have been trained to look after it and also have raised money to look after it. 

WaterAid could install toilets for the people to improve sanitation. They could get pumps for water. For hygiene, they could educate people.

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safe water+sanitation+hygiene education---->

maximises health benefits---->

without disease communites are stronger---->

  • more people can work and attend school
  • people are able to save the money they spend on medicines
  • the time saved collecting water can be used productively---->

the economy grow and develops

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A multinational company-NESTLE

Today the company has 489 factories world wide with prodcuts sold in over 100 countries. The headquarters of Nestle are still based in Vervey, Switzerland where it all began. 

USA-Took over companies in 1992. Expanded production here. 

BRAZIL-First plant established here in 1920.

ARGENTINA-Company here



INDIA-warehouses (Madras, Mumbai, Colombo).

JAPAN-manufactured her in 1933, has warehouses. 

NEW ZEALAND & AUSTRALIA-Manufacturing set up here (Auckland, Sydney&Brisbane)

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Factories affecting economic activity in an MEDC-C

Why did many call centres locate in India?

It was cheaper for the companies because the people expected lower wages. There are lots of people willing to work who have English as a second language and there are lots of graduates with ICT skills. 

Why did many companies relocate back to the UK? 

English people wanted to talk to someone British in a British call centre. Staying abroad los companies money because people would change to ones based in the UK.

Are call centres a primary, secondary, tertiary or quaternary industry?

Tertiary industry because they are a service. 

Why is the North East of England such a good place for tertiary industry? 

People in North East England will get paid less because the cost of living is lower. They are also less likely to be off work. There are increased transport routes to different areas. At Colbalt Park there is a new leisure centre, staff discounts and shared travelling schemes.

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Factors affecting the location of an economic acti

Malaysia and Indonesia are the locations in the world where most palm oil is produced.They have tropical climate which makes it easy for Palm Oil to grow. 

Palm Oil Plantations need...

  • Climate (env)-Temperature of 25-28 degres all year round. Plenty of sunshine and rainfall.
  • Site (env)-Deep, well-trained fertile soil. Flat land to reduce erosion and problems with transport. Huge areas of land. 
  • Labour and machinery (soc&eco)-Hard work to pick fruit. Special machinery to extract and refine the oil. 
  • Government Support (eco)-Research to increase quantity and production. Roads and ports for export. 
  • Markets (soc)-Used for food processing and fuels.
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