Day 179: Comprehensive Examination of “Natural” Disasters: Causes and Effects

Natural calamities arise from a combination of intricate and diverse factors, resulting in many consequences. They are frequently impacted by numerous factors, including as geographical location, climate, and human activities. Deforestation can exacerbate flooding by diminishing the soil’s capacity to absorb water. Climate change is exacerbating the intensity and recurrence of weather-related catastrophes.
The impacts of these calamities are similarly varied. Natural disasters can lead to fatalities, property damage, population displacement, infrastructure devastation, and economic decline. Additionally, they have the potential to induce enduring ecological harm, such as the degradation of soil and the depletion of habitats, which may need several decades to restore.

<Analysis of a Particular The circumstances: The most devastating natural disasters worldwide>

Throughout history, the global community has observed a series of profoundly catastrophic natural calamities. The 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami was a catastrophic event that resulted in a significant loss of human life. It caused the death of more than 230,000 individuals in 14 different nations, making it one of the deadliest disasters in recorded history. The occurrence also resulted in extensive devastation, leading to the displacement of millions of individuals and the severe destruction of numerous coastal communities.
Likewise, the earthquake that occurred in Haiti in 2010 resulted in the death of over 230,000 individuals and rendered 1.5 million people without a house. Additionally, it resulted in significant harm to the country’s infrastructure, severely impacting its economy and posing a formidable challenge for recovery.

Day_176: Empowering Pacific Island Countries: Innovative Strategies for a Disaster-Resilient Future


Let’s learn about disaster risk reduction in Pacific Island Countries.

For Pacific Island countries (PICs), vulnerable to climate change and natural disasters, including tropical cyclones, earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanic eruptions, disaster risk reduction (DRR) is a crucial part of sustainable development. These occurrences could severely impact the environment, the local economy, and the local communities. It is now more crucial than ever for PICs to concentrate on improving their capacity for disaster risk reduction and resilience.

The concept and practice of disaster risk reduction (DRR) are described by the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR) as “the concept and practice of reducing disaster risks through systematic efforts to analyze and manage the causal factors of disasters, including through reduced exposure to hazards, lessened vulnerability of people and property, wise management of land and the environment, and improved preparedness for adverse events.” This entails comprehending the particular difficulties that PICs confront in the Pacific region, figuring out the best ways to deal with these difficulties, and cooperating to secure a more resilient future for everyone.

This article discusses how crucial disaster risk reduction is for the Pacific region, looks at essential tactics for improving DRR, look at examples of effective programs, and thinks about how local knowledge and global cooperation may help create a resilient culture. Pacific Island countries may lessen their susceptibility, promote sustainable development, and be better prepared for future calamities by implementing these measures.

Pacific Island countries face distinct challenges that are unique to their region.

Pacific Island countries have many specific difficulties when it comes to reducing the risk of disasters. First and foremost, they are particularly vulnerable to disasters because of their location. PICs are vulnerable to volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, and tsunamis because of their location along the Pacific Ring of Fire. The area is also frequently affected by tropical cyclones, which can result in extensive harm and destruction.

PICs’ low resources and disaster preparedness and response capacity present another critical obstacle. Many of these nations’ inhabitants, infrastructure, and financial resources are modest. As a result, they frequently struggle to create and keep up with the required structures and methods for efficient disaster risk reduction.

Additionally, the effects of climate change are increasing already-existing threats and developing new ones for Pacific Island nations. Natural disasters are becoming more frequent and severe in the area due to rising sea levels, rising temperatures, and altering weather patterns. This makes improving disaster risk reduction in the Pacific much more complex and urgent.

Reducing the risk of disasters in the Pacific region is paramount.

It is impossible to exaggerate the significance of disaster risk reduction in the region of the Pacific. Natural disasters can wreak havoc and create great destruction, affecting the environment, the economy, and communities that persist for years. The Pacific island countries can lessen these effects, save lives, and safeguard their development achievements by investing in disaster risk reduction.

The Pacific region’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are also strongly related to disaster risk reduction. Natural disasters can directly influence many SDGs, including eradicating poverty, ensuring health and well-being, and fostering sustainable cities and communities. Pacific Island countries may advance toward these objectives and guarantee a more sustainable future for all by improving their capacity for disaster risk reduction.

Finally, reducing the risk of disasters is essential to helping Pacific Island communities become resilient. Communities’ capacity to resist shocks and pressures like disasters, recover from them, and adapt to them is called resilience. By implementing efficient disaster risk reduction initiatives, PICs may empower their communities to increase their resilience and preparedness for future catastrophes.

Discover some highly effective techniques to enhance disaster risk reduction with the following suggestions.

Climate change adaptation

The effects of climate change are one of the biggest obstacles to disaster risk reduction that Pacific Island countries must overcome. As a result, any DRR strategy in the area must include adaptation to climate change as a critical element. Some examples of adaptation methods are enhancing coastal defenses, implementing sustainable land- and water-management practices, and creating climate-resilient agriculture and fisheries.

Climate factors must be incorporated into development planning and decision-making processes as part of climate change adaptation. This can help ensure that investments and development initiatives are created to resist climate change’s effects and not unintentionally raise the risk of disaster.

Infrastructure resilience

Improving infrastructure resiliency is crucial for boosting disaster risk reduction in the Pacific. This entails ensuring that critical infrastructure, such as transportation networks, energy production facilities, and water and sanitation systems, is planned, constructed, and maintained to withstand the effects of natural disasters and climate change.

Developing and enforcing construction rules and standards, using cutting-edge technologies and materials, and integrating risk assessments and management strategies into the planning and design processes for infrastructure are all ways to increase its resilience. Pacific Island countries can lessen the potential harm brought on by disasters and assure the ongoing provision of critical services both during and after disasters by investing in resilient infrastructure.

Early warning systems

Implementing efficient early warning systems is paramount in enhancing disaster risk reduction efforts in the Pacific region. The aforementioned systems can provide precise and prompt data regarding imminent perils, enabling communities and governing bodies to undertake suitable measures to mitigate the consequences of disasters.

Early warning systems encompass a variety of technologies and methodologies, including but not limited to satellite-based monitoring, seismometers, and community-based observation networks. Apart from the development and execution of stated systems, it is crucial to guarantee that communities possess the ability and knowledge to understand and respond to early warning information.

Community engagement and Preparedness

Any practical disaster risk reduction approach must include community involvement and preparedness. Pacific Island countries may ensure that local needs and views are considered and that communities have a greater capacity to respond to and recover from disasters by involving communities in designing, implementing, and monitoring DRR programs.

Creating community early warning systems and carrying out of regular disaster exercises are examples of community-based disaster preparedness initiatives. Additionally, community participation can increase the efficacy and support for DRR activities by fostering trust between citizens and authorities.

Case studies of successful disaster risk reduction initiatives

The successful implementation of various disaster risk reduction efforts in Pacific Island countries has shed light on practical methods for strengthening DRR in the area. The Pacific Catastrophe Risk Assessment and finance project (PCRAFI), which emerged in response to the expanding demand for disaster risk finance in the Pacific, is one such project.

Participating countries have access to catastrophe risk models, financial safety nets, and technical assistance for disaster risk management through PCRAFI. With the tools and resources it offers, the project has proven to be a highly successful means of assisting Pacific Island countries to identify better and manage their disaster risk.

The Pacific Climate Change and Migration (PCCM) project, which intends to raise the resilience of vulnerable populations in Fiji and Tuvalu to the effects of climate change, including displacement and migration, is another effective program. The project has concentrated on a variety of interventions, such as the building of climate-resilient infrastructure, the promotion of community-based disaster risk reduction, and the development of sustainable methods for livelihood.

The PCCM project highlights the value of tackling the underlying factors that increase disaster risk, such as climate change and incorporating disaster risk reduction (DRR) into larger development projects. Pacific Island countries may create more resilient and sustainable populations by approaching disaster risk reduction strategically.

The Role of international cooperation in disaster risk reduction

Effective disaster risk reduction in the Pacific region requires global cooperation. International cooperation and support are crucial because many Pacific Island countries lack the resources and capacity to manage their disaster risk independently.

International cooperation can take many forms, including knowledge sharing, capacity building, and financial and technical support. For instance, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has generously supported initiatives in the Pacific to reduce disaster risk, such as creating early warning systems, establishing community-based disaster preparedness programs, and promoting climate change adaptation.

Incorporating regional expertise and customs into DRR activities can be significantly aided by international cooperation. International partners can contribute to ensuring that DRR strategies are practical and culturally appropriate by collaborating closely with local communities and traditional leaders.

Incorporating local knowledge and traditional practices

Initiatives for reducing the risk of disaster must incorporate local expertise and customs to be effective and long-lasting. The inhabitants of the Pacific Islands have abundant knowledge and experience in dealing with natural disasters, and their customs and traditions can offer essential insights into efficient DRR techniques.

Many Pacific Island societies, for instance, have created complex early warning systems using their understanding of the environment and natural occurrences. Countries in the Pacific Islands can improve their capacity for disaster preparedness and response by integrating these systems into more comprehensive DRR policies.

Culturing climate-resilient crops and constructing cyclone-resistant homes are examples of traditional practices that can offer important insights into effective adaptation strategies. Pacific Islander countries may create more resilient and sustainable communities by recognizing and adopting these practices into DRR projects.

Building a Culture of Resilience in Pacific Island Communities

Effective disaster risk reduction in Pacific Island communities depends on fostering a culture of resilience. This entails implementing efficient DRR measures and giving communities the tools they need to manage their risk of disasters and increase their resilience.

Communities can be empowered to actively participate in disaster preparedness and response through community-based approaches to disaster risk reduction, such as those used in the PCCM project. These techniques can also assist in fostering trust and collaboration between communities and authorities.

Furthermore, building a culture of resilience in Pacific Island communities can be facilitated by raising awareness and educating people about disaster risk reduction. Pacific Island countries may create more resilient communities and lessen the potential effect of natural disasters by giving populations the expertise and skills they need to understand and handle their disaster risk.

Monitoring and evaluating disaster risk reduction progress

Monitoring and assessing their progress is crucial for disaster risk reduction strategies to be effective and persistent. Pacific Island countries can continuously hone and enhance their DRR strategies, enhancing their capacity for resilience over time by monitoring progress and identifying areas for improvement.

The development of data management systems, setting up surveys and evaluations, and establishing performance indicators are just a few examples of the various ways that monitoring and evaluation can be carried out. Pacific Island governments may ensure that their DRR projects are based on evidence and successful by investing in these tools and procedures.

Envisioning a Robust and Sustainable Future for Pacific Island Nations through Collaborative Endeavors and Holistic Strategies

It takes a variety of tactics and approaches to effectively increase disaster risk reduction in Pacific Island countries. Pacific Island countries may build a more robust future for all people by emphasizing infrastructure resilience, early warning systems, community participation and preparedness, and incorporating indigenous knowledge and traditional practices.

Effective disaster risk reduction in the Pacific requires global cooperation and encouraging a resilient culture. Pacific Island nations can lessen their susceptibility to natural disasters and promote sustainable development by cooperating and strengthening local populations.

Monitoring and evaluation will be crucial to ensure that DRR projects in the area are successful and long-lasting. By continuously enhancing and upgrading our methods, we can create a more resilient and prosperous future for Pacific Island nations and their populations.

Day_174: Unraveling the Twister Mysteries: A Captivating Dive into the Science of Tornadoes


One of nature’s most potent and destructive forces is the tornado. These storms, with wind gusts exceeding 300 miles per hour, have the potential to harm homes, businesses, and entire communities seriously. However, what gives rise to tornadoes, and how do they develop such enormous strength? This article examines the science underlying tornadoes, including the atmospheric factors influencing their development and the most recent findings, mainly focusing on the US cases.

What Factors Lead to Tornado Formation?

Warm, moist air from the Gulf of Mexico and cool, dry air from Canada are two of the atmospheric factors that combine to create tornadoes. A huge, unstable atmosphere is produced when these two air masses clash, which can result in the development of powerful thunderstorms. These thunderstorms frequently produce tornadoes because the spinning of the storm stretches and condenses a column of air, forming a funnel cloud.

Although thunderstorms are a requirement for the development of tornadoes, not all thunderstorms result in tornadoes. In actuality, tornadoes only sometimes form during thunderstorms. This is because certain conditions, such as significant levels of wind shear—the change in wind speed and direction with height—are necessary for tornadoes to occur. The revolving column of air within a thunderstorm may tilt due to wind shear, producing a horizontal spinning motion that can result in the development of a tornado.

The Anatomy of a Tornado

Despite coming in various shapes and sizes, tornadoes all possess a similar structure. The vortex, a rotating column of air extending from the cloud base down to the ground, forms the primary body of a tornado. This vortex is encircled by a turbulent cloud of dust and debris, often visible in the form of a funnel-shaped cloud.

Tornado strength is quantified using the Enhanced Fujita Scale, which rates tornadoes on a scale of EF0 to EF5 based on the destruction they cause. EF0 is the weakest tornado, with winds ranging from 65 to 85 miles per hour, while EF5 is the strongest, with winds exceeding 200 miles per hour. The strength of a tornado is determined by the speed and intensity of the rotating column of air within the vortex.

The Fujita Staircase

The Fujita Staircase graphically displays the Enhanced Fujita Scale and its corresponding levels of damage for different categories of tornado strength. It consists of six steps labeled F0 to F5, each representing a specific level of tornado intensity. The staircase aids meteorologists and emergency managers in evaluating tornado damage and devising plans for tornado preparedness and response.

The Difference Between a Tornado Watch and a Tornado Warning

When weather conditions are favorable for tornadoes to form, a tornado watch is issued. Although no tornadoes have been reported, there is a high probability of severe thunderstorms and tornadoes in the area. During a tornado watch, it’s important to stay informed about the weather conditions and be prepared to take action if a tornado warning is issued. On the other hand, a tornado warning is issued when a tornado has been sighted or detected by radar. This means that a tornado is imminent, and you need to take immediate action to protect yourself. In case of a tornado warning, seek shelter in a sturdy building, preferably in a basement or an interior room on the lowest level of the building.

Tornado Safety Tips

Living in an area prone to tornadoes requires preparation and knowledge of what to do during a tornado. To stay safe, keep these tornado safety tips in mind:

– Stay updated on the weather conditions by monitoring local news and weather reports.

– Have a plan in place for where to go and what to do in case of a tornado. Identify a secure location in your home or workplace, preferably in a basement or an interior room on the lowest level of the building.

– If you’re driving and a tornado approaches, seek shelter in a strong building or take cover in a ditch or low-lying area. Avoid trying to outrun a tornado in your car.

– If you’re caught outside during a tornado, find shelter in a low-lying area, like a ditch or culvert. Cover your head with your hands and avoid trees and other objects that could fall on you.

The Deadliest Tornadoes in History

Throughout history, tornadoes have left behind a trail of destruction and loss of life. Some of the deadliest tornadoes on record are as follows: The Tri-State Tornado of 1925 claimed 695 lives and caused injuries to over 2,000 people in Missouri, Illinois, and Indiana; The Natchez Tornado of 1840 resulted in the death of 317 people and injuries to over 1,000 individuals in Mississippi and Louisiana. The Joplin Tornado of 2011 caused the loss of 158 lives and injured over 1,000 people in Missouri. These catastrophic storms serve as a warning of the immense power and destructive force of tornadoes, emphasizing the significance of staying prepared and informed.

Tornado Chasing and Research

Many meteorologists and weather enthusiasts have taken up tornado chasing as a thrilling hobby. With the help of specialized equipment such as radar and GPS, chasers monitor the formation and movement of tornadoes. Although this activity comes with risks, it has greatly contributed to our knowledge of tornadoes and their behavior.

The study of tornadoes has been greatly aided by scientific research. Through the use of advanced tools like Doppler radar, satellite imagery, and computer modeling, scientists have gained a better understanding of the atmospheric conditions that give rise to tornadoes, as well as the factors that determine their strength and behavior.

How Climate Change Affects Tornadoes

Researchers are studying the potential impact of climate change on weather patterns worldwide, particularly concerning tornadoes. While there is still much to learn about the relationship between climate change and tornadoes, some experts suggest that rising temperatures and alterations in atmospheric circulation could cause an uptick in tornado activity in certain areas.

Moreover, climate change may also trigger changes in tornado patterns, such as more frequent outbreaks and shifts in the timing and location of tornadoes. These alterations could have significant implications for preparedness and response efforts related to tornadoes.

Final Remarks

The sight of a tornado is both awe-inspiring and terrifying, as it is one of nature’s most powerful phenomena. Although the science behind its formation is intricate and multifarious, our comprehension of these storms is constantly expanding. By examining the mechanics and behavior of tornadoes, we can predict and prepare for their impact, ultimately reducing the damage and destruction they cause. Therefore, should you hear a warning siren, it is important to remain informed, prepared, and most importantly, safe.


Day_50 : NWC and Univ. of Oklahoma

Day_163: PAR model : Hazard and Vulnerability (3)

As discussed on Day 147, now we are investing the social vulnerability index of the district, sub-district, and village levels in Ayutthaya. To calculate the social vulnerability index, exposure, susceptibility, and capacity data are examined. Notably, the district level of the index is figured out, as shown in Figure 1, using principal component analysis.

(Please enlarge the screen to see the figure well. Darker blue means more vulnerable. The detailed factors of PCA will be explained later. )

Figure 1: Social Vulnerability Index Industrial Complex Area(SVI-ICA) Ref. 1)

Day_147: PAR model : Hazard and Vulnerability

As mentioned above, the district level of the social vulnerability index can be figured out by statistical data. However, sub-district and village levels data are challenging to collect. We also need to understand the capacity is a factor that includes not only hard but also soft countermeasures against natural disasters, as discussed before. Especially, capacity-soft is not stable by time with circumstances and could be changing from time to time. The stats data is not enough to indicate their actual capacities.

Based on the above fact, the capacity assessment is considered to fill the gaps. The capacity assessment method was based on the FDPI project experience.

The population of the target areas is indicated below:

Table 1:  The Population of the Tambons (Source: registration office 2019)

Below is the category (indicators) to measure the capacity.

Table 2: Indicators and Sub-Indicators for Capacity Assessment

The results are as indicated in Figure 2.

Figure 2: Four Sub-District Capacity Assessment 

The findings show the western side and eastern side have a big gap, as you can see in Figure 2.

Figure 3 explains the education and training part is much different among the four target sub-district. The results mean we can monitor and evaluate their progress after we provide education, training, system, or so on there.

Figure 3: Capacity Assessment Analyses

For example, each sub-indicators are examined as follows:

Figure 4: Information and Education Sub-Indicators Gaps 

The analyses (the detailed sub-indicators from IE1 to IE11) will be explained later.

Related Book and Info.

At Risk: Natural Hazards, People’s Vulnerability and Disasters

*This is the baseline research for the SATREPS project.

Day_159: PAR model : Hazard and Vulnerability (2)

Day_147: PAR model : Hazard and Vulnerability

As discussed on Day 147, now we are investing the social vulnerability index of the district, sub-district, and village levels in Ayutthaya. To calculate the social vulnerability index, exposure, susceptibility, and capacity data are examined. Especially, the district level of the index is figured out as shown in Figure 1 using principal component analysis.

Figure 1: Social Vulnerability Index Industrial Complex Area(SVI-ICA) Ref. 1)

The district level of the social vulnerability index can be figured out by statistical data. However, sub-district and village level data should be difficult to collect such data. Based on the fact, the capacity assessment is firstly conducted to the target four sub-districts as indicated in Figure 2. The capacity assessment method was based on the FDPI project experience.

Figure 2: Four Sub-District Capacity Assessment 

The findings say the western side and eastern side have a big gap as you can see in Figure 2.

Figure 3 indicates the education and training part is much different among the four target sub-district. This means we can monitor and evaluate their progress after we provide education, training, system, or so on there.

Figure 3: Capacity Assessment Analyses

The detailed examination will be explained later.

*Exposure, Susceptibility, and Capacity data list will be shown later. The theoretical frame is base on the PAR model. The below book can be referred.

At Risk: Natural Hazards, People’s Vulnerability and Disasters

**This is the baseline research for the SATREPS project.

Ref. 1) Tadashi Nakasu, Ruttiya Bula-or, Sutee Anatsuksomsti, Korrakot Positlimpakul (2019)Social Vulnerability Changes and Sustainable Development in the Flooded Industrial Complex Area The 2nd multidisciplinary International Conference on Humanities (ICH 2019) “Innovation and Transformation in Humanities for a Sustainable Tomorrow.” 30-31 October 2019, School of Humanities, Universiti Sains Malaysia, Penang, Malaysia

Day_147: PAR model : Hazard and Vulnerability

Disaster researchers often refer to the PAR (Press and Release) model to understand the risk.
The PAR model was described in the book “At Risk”. This book is a kind of bible for disaster researchers. Disaster Risk is described as an overlapped area between Hazard and Vulnerability.

The Disaster risk should also consider “Exposure” and “Capacity”. The capacity has mainly two parts, Hard and Soft. In short, Capacity Hard (CH) means tangible factors and  Capacity Soft(CS) means intangible ones. For instance, infrastructure is CH and education is CS. The Disaster risk usually can be identified by the following picture. Figure 1 indicates the above.

Figure 1  Disaster Risk

Using the below equation, disaster risk would be identified.

Disaster Risk = H*E*V/ (CH+CS)

Each factor such as E (Exposure) could be identified by mainly statistic data in the target area.
To do this, the indices can be established. The data to contribute each factor should be carefully examined.

Figure 2 is the national level Index Image of Thailand.

Figure 2 Social Vulnerability

To be continued…..