Natural disasters become social, political disasters

vietnam floods
ASEAN nations hard hit by natural disasters Damaged houses and debris are seen following flash floods and landslides in the Phuoc Dong commune of central Vietnam’s Khanh Hoa province on 18 November, 2018. (Hoang Dung / AFP Photo) READ Full Story:

AIG says natural disasters could cost it $800m in Q4

AIG chief executive Brian Duperreault said that a series of natural disasters in the fourth quarter of the year would cost the insurer between $750m and $800m. The US has experienced a series of catastrophes in recent months including Hurricane Michael in October and a series of wildfires in California.Speaking at a conference in New York, Mr Duperreault said that losses from Hurricane Michael will be at the higher end of the previously disclosed $300m to $500m range. The fires will cost between $150m and $175m. The news comes a day after the company replaced its chief financial officer. On Tuesday AIG said that Mark Lyons, who has been chief actuary of its general insurance business, would take over from Sid Sankaran. Mr Lyons joined AIG earlier this year from Arch Capital, where he was also CFO. AIG’s shares had dropped by over 5 per cent on Tuesday.*Earlier this week Chubb, one of AIG’s rival’s, outlined the scale of its own losses from the natural catastrophes. It said that the wildfires would cost $225m before tax, while losses from Hurricane Michael will be at the upper end of the previously disclosed range of $150m to $250m…


Natural disasters become social, political disasters

More than 3,000 people died in the 1906 San Francisco earthquake. More than 150,000 people were killed in the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami. Nearly 2,000 people were killed in Hurricane Katrina. Society is no stranger to disasters and they have existed as long as Earth has existed.

Natural disasters interrupt society and tear everything apart, devastating countless lives throughout human history. But is this a case of man versus nature?

There has been controversy regarding whether many disasters can truly be considered “natural.” Some have concluded that “natural” disasters are just disasters, while the hazards are considered natural.

The Global Network of Civil Society Organizations for Disaster Reduction (GNDR) states that “a hazard only becomes a disaster at the point where it interacts with society. So whereas hazards are natural, there is nothing natural about a disaster.”

Hurricanes, tornadoes and tsunamis are all natural phenomena that are hazardous, but only become disasters…



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