Major floods twice as common as 30 years ago, data shows
Major floods have become almost twice as frequent as they were 30 years ago, according to figures from the Centre for Research on the Epidemoiology of Disasters (CRED).
During the 1990s, an average of 87 serious floods were recorded around the world each year, a number that has climbed to 165 a year since the turn of the century, impacting more than 140 million people annually. Last year 169 incidents were registered.
In the same timeframe, the number of droughts has risen by 30 percent, landslides are up 23 percent, storms have increased by 11% and fires by 14%, according to CRED data.
“Flooding is increasing everywhere and causing large-scale losses. It’s by far the biggest threat for for the world including Europe,” Debarati Guha-Sapir, director of CRED and a professor at the University of Leuven, Belgium. She adds that floods are nevertheless one of the natural disasters that are simplest to avoid…
Living in the Shadow of Mount Sinabung
On the morning of February 19, 2018, day turned to night for the residents of Perbaji, a small village less than five kilometers away from Mount Sinabung in Karo Regency, North Sumatra. Oktavianus Karo-Karo, 28, was sitting in his wooden house in the shadow of the active volcano when he heard an ominous rumble. When he looked outside, the sky had turned black as the volcano shot ash over 5,000 meters in the air…
Los Angeles Releases Resilience Strategy
Mayor Eric Garretti last week called on the city to consider mandatory retrofits of steel-framed buildings — the first time he’s raised the possibility of such a project. Experts believe a number of Los Angeles’ steel-framed buildings erected before the 1994 Northridge earthquake, which killed 60 people and damaged upwards of 40,000 buildings, could collapse when the Big One hits, according to the Los Angeles Times.
“There are buildings in Los Angeles that have slipped through the cracks. But we can’t let people in an earthquake be killed by those cracks,” Garcetti told the paper. “Sometimes it takes political courage, but we have to make sure we don’t look back after an earthquake and have lives that were lost and say, ‘Well, we did as much as we could.’ ” The steel-framed building retrofit is one of several proposals outlined in the new “Resilient Los Angeles” report. The document, like similar ones released in Atlanta, Pittsburgh and Boston, was crafted in partnership with the Rockefeller Foundation’s 100 Resilient Cities…