California is suituated on the San Andreas, San Gregorio and Hayward faultline systems. These are conservative plate boundaries, where the North American plate is moving at 2cm/year compared to 9cm/year for the Pacific - causing earthquakes.
California is also prone to drought and wildfires due to the teleconnectics of La Nina events and anticyclones. Furthermore it is just west of Arizona, a desert state, therefore recieves dry, warm air off the desert.
It even has some volcanoes in the very northern region of the state due to the Cascadia fault, which produces volcanoes such as Lassen Peak. (Which hasn't errupted since 1915)
Landslide and flood risk is increased by the mountainous regions in the East of the state.
It is at risk from fluvial floods as during El Nino years the San Gabriel and Los Angeles rivers can flood.
These factors have been excacerbated by human intervention:
-Overdevelopment on unconsolidated soils in the San Fransico Bay area increases the risk posed to property if liquefaction occurs
-Builiding and deforesting on unstable coastal land, excessive irrigation and soil lubrication contributed to the La Conchita Landslide
-20% of the population live below the official poverty line, increasing their vunberability and decreasing capacity to cope
-70% of residents live within 50km of a faultline
-It is prone to large absolute economic disasters due to it's large economy
Tectonic Hazard - 1989 Loma Prieta Earthquake
- 17 October 1989
-Killed 63 people when a freeway collapsed
-$6BN in costs due to the destruction of 1000 homes and 366 buisnessess which were not build asesmically or to withstand the liquefaction
> An example of the low social and high econmic hazards California suffers
Hydrometeorlogical Hazard - 2007 Wildfire Season
-A combination of La Nina and a prolonged drought made this a bad year for bushfires
-22 people were killed and 1300 houses destroyed, with San Diego worst affected
-The "Witch" fire occured on Halloween and killed…