Too little, too late? The devastating consequences of natural disasters must inform building codes
Steady population growth and the accompanying rise in urban density increases the risk to human life and damage to property caused by natural disasters. In 2017, the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) estimated the annual cost of earthquake damage in the United States was US$6.1 billion.
Building codes are not retroactive, which means that buildings need only comply with the codes that were in effect at the time of their design and construction. The retrofitting of existing structures and the enforcement of building standards is the biggest challenge for local and federal governments in North America.
Earthquakes have posed a major threat to infrastructure. Damage caused by earthquakes has led to the development and evolution of building codes designed to withstand or minimize damage to buildings. This is known as seismic design, and takes into consideration the magnitude and frequency of earthquakes in a particular region…READ ON
8 wonders of the world that climate change could destroy
Over the centuries, plenty of earthly wonders have been destroyed. Some have been toppled by natural disasters like earthquakes or volcanoes, others have been shattered by conflict. Plenty more still have been devastated by the slow march of time itself.
But right now we face the rapid destruction of several wonders of the world by a phenomenon that is entirely our own fault. Climate change is the most severe threat currently facing the planet, and it’s set to transform the world as we know it.
In 2020, the IUCN World Heritage Outlook warned that 7 percent of all natural wonders faced ‘critical’ threat due to the climate crisis, and that 30 percent were of ‘significant concern’. And of course, there are plenty of man-made wonders under threat, too: some of our most phenomenal creations might not make it to the end of the century…READ ON