How to know if your home is at risk for natural disasters — and what to do if it is

How does El Nino warm the entire globe?

We regularly hear about how El Niño events raise the temperature across much of the planet, contributing to spikes in global average temperature such as the one witnessed in 1998, with severe bush fires, droughts and floods.

It turns out that if we were to warm all of the oceans on Earth by 1C, the land would, as a direct result, warm by 1.5C.

Indeed, the extra warmth is typically much more apparent over land than in the oceans, despite El Niño being chiefly thought of as an ocean temperature phenomenon.

How is it that an event predominantly characterised by a warm blob of water in the tropical eastern Pacific can have such a pervasive effect on global land…READ ON

How to know if your home is at risk for natural disasters — and what to do if it is

Those on the hunt for a new home often have a lengthy list of considerations, including number of bathrooms, size of the backyard, school district and proximity to work. But there’s another piece that should factor in to the decision: a home’s vulnerability to peril. By that, I mean the likelihood of that home being struck by a natural disaster, such as a hurricane, flood, earthquake or wildfire, and how equipped that home is to deal with those risks.

“If people were more aware of the risks, they would be much less likely to suffer a total loss”

“Too few consumers are empowered to ask simple, upfront questions about disaster-resistant home features that can prevent costly damage and save lives,” says Leslie Chapman-Henderson, president and chief executive of the Federal Alliance for Safe Homes, or Flash, a nonprofit that helps house hunters and homeowners prepare for natural disasters. “The choices you make around your home can make a big difference”

Darius H. Grimes, president and chief executive of Disaster-Smart Inspection Consulting in Pensacola, Fla., says he gets calls from homeowners across the country asking what they can do to make their homes more resilient. “If people were more aware of the risks, they would be much less likely to suffer a total loss,” says Grimes, who performs certified fortified home evaluations to ensure a home has been built or re-roofed to withstand perilous conditions…READ ON

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