resilience reporter

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Resilience NEWS

That’s me in the picture: Greg Cook, 59, hugs his dog Coco after a tornado destroys his home in Alabama, 2012

I was sitting on the front porch one day, and this dog came walking up. He was about two years old. I fed him and he hung around, so I asked around to find out who he belonged to. Nobody knew, so I adopted him and named him Coco. Three years later, a tornado hit our house. Tornados are a yearly thing here in Alabama; they tend to come around in the springtime. We just live in hope that we don’t get hit. I knew about 30 minutes beforehand that it was going to hit. My girlfriend, Brenda, was in town, working. She phoned and said, “It’s headed for our house.” Coco was home alone, so I was terrified. The tornado hit about five minutes before I got there…

 

More to learn after historic natural disasters

With the 60th anniversary of the Hunter Valley floods upon us, a researcher from the University of Newcastle believes the community has become ‘disempowered’ from preparing for another natural disaster. In February 1955, the NSW Hunter Valley was hit by one of the worst floods in Australian history. A total of 14 people were killed, while many homes and businesses were left sodden or destroyed, with Maitland the hardest hit. On 28 December 1989, Newcastle was shaken by an earthquake measuring 5.6 on the Richter scale…

 

Natural disasters in Asia and Pacific impact some 80 million people, new UN study shows

When leaders and decision makers from across Asia and the Pacific gather next month in Japan to discuss how to reduce disaster risks, their top priority will be to build resilience in a region that saw some 80 million people affected and nearly $60 billion in economic losses incurred by natural disasters last year. That’s according to Natural Disasters in Asia and the Pacific: 2014 Year in Review report released today by the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP). The report said that more than half of the world’s 226 natural disasters occurred in the Asia and Pacific region last year…

 

Building an emergency internet in the white spaces

A village in the Cordillera mountains, Luzon, Philippines. White spaces tech brought network access to remote locations across the Philippines in the wake of natural disasters. Image: Shutterstock/joyfull

A village in the Cordillera mountains, Luzon, Philippines. White spaces tech brought network access to remote locations across the Philippines in the wake of natural disasters. Image: Shutterstock/joyfull

White spaces wireless technology has been in the news recently, as what used to be TV frequencies are being opened up to expand wireless internet access to rural areas in the US and the UK. But it’s outside the developed world that this technology is having the most impact, as a recent conversation with Dondi Mapa, Microsoft’s national technology officer for the Philippines, revealed. White spaces technologies aren’t new – they were something I looked into when working with the local loop group of a telecoms research lab back in the early 1990s. The system that Mapa is using in the Philippines is based on research from a Cambridge-based consortium that Microsoft Research, the BBC, and Sky began seven or so years ago…

 

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