Sample records for widespread natural hazards

  1. The Nature of Natural Hazards Communication (Invited) (United States)

    Kontar, Y. Y.


    Some of the many issues of interest to natural hazards professionals include the analysis of proactive approaches to the governance of risk from natural hazards and approaches to broaden the scope of public policies related to the management of risks from natural hazards, as well as including emergency and environmental management, community development and spatial planning related to natural hazards. During the talk we will present results of scientific review, analysis and synthesis, which emphasize same new trends in communication of the natural hazards theories and practices within an up-to-the-minute context of new environmental and climate change issues, new technologies, and a new focus on resiliency. The presentation is divided into five sections that focus on natural hazards communication in terms of education, risk management, public discourse, engaging the public, theoretical perspectives, and new media. It includes results of case studies and best practices. It delves into natural hazards communication theories, including diffusion, argumentation, and constructivism, to name a few. The presentation will provide information about: (1) A manual of natural hazards communication for scientists, policymakers, and media; (2) An up-to-the-minute context of environmental hazards, new technologies & political landscape; (3) A work by natural hazards scientists for geoscientists working with social scientists and communication principles; (4) A work underpinned by key natural hazards communication theories and interspersed with pragmatic solutions; (5) A work that crosses traditional natural hazards boundaries: international, interdisciplinary, theoretical/applied. We will further explore how spatial planning can contribute to risk governance by influencing the occupation of natural hazard-prone areas, and review the central role of emergency management in risk policy. The goal of this presentation is to contribute to the augmentation of the conceptual framework

  2. Hazard function theory for nonstationary natural hazards (United States)

    Read, L.; Vogel, R. M.


    Studies from the natural hazards literature indicate that many natural processes, including wind speeds, landslides, wildfires, precipitation, streamflow and earthquakes, show evidence of nonstationary behavior such as trends in magnitudes through time. Traditional probabilistic analysis of natural hazards based on partial duration series (PDS) generally assumes stationarity in the magnitudes and arrivals of events, i.e. that the probability of exceedance is constant through time. Given evidence of trends and the consequent expected growth in devastating impacts from natural hazards across the world, new methods are needed to characterize their probabilistic behavior. The field of hazard function analysis (HFA) is ideally suited to this problem because its primary goal is to describe changes in the exceedance probability of an event over time. HFA is widely used in medicine, manufacturing, actuarial statistics, reliability engineering, economics, and elsewhere. HFA provides a rich theory to relate the natural hazard event series (x) with its failure time series (t), enabling computation of corresponding average return periods and reliabilities associated with nonstationary event series. This work investigates the suitability of HFA to characterize nonstationary natural hazards whose PDS magnitudes are assumed to follow the widely applied Poisson-GP model. We derive a 2-parameter Generalized Pareto hazard model and demonstrate how metrics such as reliability and average return period are impacted by nonstationarity and discuss the implications for planning and design. Our theoretical analysis linking hazard event series x, with corresponding failure time series t, should have application to a wide class of natural hazards.

  3. Hazard function theory for nonstationary natural hazards (United States)

    Read, Laura K.; Vogel, Richard M.


    Impact from natural hazards is a shared global problem that causes tremendous loss of life and property, economic cost, and damage to the environment. Increasingly, many natural processes show evidence of nonstationary behavior including wind speeds, landslides, wildfires, precipitation, streamflow, sea levels, and earthquakes. Traditional probabilistic analysis of natural hazards based on peaks over threshold (POT) generally assumes stationarity in the magnitudes and arrivals of events, i.e., that the probability of exceedance of some critical event is constant through time. Given increasing evidence of trends in natural hazards, new methods are needed to characterize their probabilistic behavior. The well-developed field of hazard function analysis (HFA) is ideally suited to this problem because its primary goal is to describe changes in the exceedance probability of an event over time. HFA is widely used in medicine, manufacturing, actuarial statistics, reliability engineering, economics, and elsewhere. HFA provides a rich theory to relate the natural hazard event series (X) with its failure time series (T), enabling computation of corresponding average return periods, risk, and reliabilities associated with nonstationary event series. This work investigates the suitability of HFA to characterize nonstationary natural hazards whose POT magnitudes are assumed to follow the widely applied generalized Pareto model. We derive the hazard function for this case and demonstrate how metrics such as reliability and average return period are impacted by nonstationarity and discuss the implications for planning and design. Our theoretical analysis linking hazard random variable X with corresponding failure time series T should have application to a wide class of natural hazards with opportunities for future extensions.

  4. Natural hazards science strategy (United States)

    Holmes, Robert R.; Jones, Lucile M.; Eidenshink, Jeffery C.; Godt, Jonathan W.; Kirby, Stephen H.; Love, Jeffrey J.; Neal, Christina A.; Plant, Nathaniel G.; Plunkett, Michael L.; Weaver, Craig S.; Wein, Anne; Perry, Suzanne C.


    The mission of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in natural hazards is to develop and apply hazard science to help protect the safety, security, and economic well-being of the Nation. The costs and consequences of natural hazards can be enormous, and each year more people and infrastructure are at risk. USGS scientific research—founded on detailed observations and improved understanding of the responsible physical processes—can help to understand and reduce natural hazard risks and to make and effectively communicate reliable statements about hazard characteristics, such as frequency, magnitude, extent, onset, consequences, and where possible, the time of future events.To accomplish its broad hazard mission, the USGS maintains an expert workforce of scientists and technicians in the earth sciences, hydrology, biology, geography, social and behavioral sciences, and other fields, and engages cooperatively with numerous agencies, research institutions, and organizations in the public and private sectors, across the Nation and around the world. The scientific expertise required to accomplish the USGS mission in natural hazards includes a wide range of disciplines that this report refers to, in aggregate, as hazard science.In October 2010, the Natural Hazards Science Strategy Planning Team (H–SSPT) was charged with developing a long-term (10-year) Science Strategy for the USGS mission in natural hazards. This report fulfills that charge, with a document hereinafter referred to as the Strategy, to provide scientific observations, analyses, and research that are critical for the Nation to become more resilient to natural hazards. Science provides the information that decisionmakers need to determine whether risk management activities are worthwhile. Moreover, as the agency with the perspective of geologic time, the USGS is uniquely positioned to extend the collective experience of society to prepare for events outside current memory. The USGS has critical statutory

  5. Natural Hazards, Second Edition (United States)

    Rouhban, Badaoui

    Natural disaster loss is on the rise, and the vulnerability of the human and physical environment to the violent forces of nature is increasing. In many parts of the world, disasters caused by natural hazards such as earthquakes, floods, landslides, drought, wildfires, intense windstorms, tsunami, and volcanic eruptions have caused the loss of human lives, injury, homelessness, and the destruction of economic and social infrastructure. Over the last few years, there has been an increase in the occurrence, severity, and intensity of disasters, culminating with the devastating tsunami of 26 December 2004 in South East Asia.Natural hazards are often unexpected or uncontrollable natural events of varying magnitude. Understanding their mechanisms and assessing their distribution in time and space are necessary for refining risk mitigation measures. This second edition of Natural Hazards, (following a first edition published in 1991 by Cambridge University Press), written by Edward Bryant, associate dean of science at Wollongong University, Australia, grapples with this crucial issue, aspects of hazard prediction, and other issues. The book presents a comprehensive analysis of different categories of hazards of climatic and geological origin.

  6. New Developments in Natural Hazard Management (United States)

    Stötter, J.; Meißl, G.; Weck-Hannemann, H.; Veulliet, E.


    Natural hazard processes such as avalanches, debris flows, rockfalls, slides, slow mass movements and floods inherently threaten areas used for settlements, economic activities or transport in mountain regions like the Alps. In the recent past an increasing demand for new settlement, traffic and other land use areas has arisen, resulting in intensified utilization of land known to be threatened by natural hazard processes. In the same time a decrease of individual responsibility can be observed, leading to a growing call for protection by public authorities. As public financial resources become more limited in these days and the outsourcing of areas of traditional government responsibility increases, there is an urgent need for new, more effective and efficient strategies in natural hazard management, involving all relevant actors. To meet these new demands in dealing with natural hazards, the "alpS - Centre of Natural Hazard Management" was founded in October 2002 in Innsbruck/Austria, supported by the Austrian Government. Central goal of the alpS - Centre is to elaborate the basis for future sustainable safety of the alpine lebensraum. The following objectives will be addressed by an interdisciplinary team: - Systematic compilation and evaluation of the present situation. - Developing a more efficient and effective way of natural hazard management. - Implementation of a paradigm change. - Development of strategies for natural hazard management under changed frame conditions in the future (global change). Strong emphasis is laid on research on the socio-economic aspects of Natural Hazard Management, which have been more or less neglected up to now.

  7. Coastal vulnerability: climate change and natural hazards perspectives (United States)

    Romieu, E.; Vinchon, C.


    Introduction Studying coastal zones as a territorial concept (Integrated coastal zone management) is an essential issue for managers, as they have to consider many different topics (natural hazards, resources management, tourism, climate change…). The recent approach in terms of "coastal vulnerability" studies (since the 90's) is the main tool used nowadays to help them in evaluating impacts of natural hazards on coastal zones, specially considering climate change. This present communication aims to highlight the difficulties in integrating this concept in risk analysis as it is usually practiced in natural hazards sciences. 1) Coastal vulnerability as a recent issue The concept of coastal vulnerability mainly appears in the International panel on climate change works of 1992 (IPCC. 2001), where it is presented as essential for climate change adaptation. The concept has been defined by a common methodology which proposes the assessment of seven indicators, in regards to a sea level rise of 1m in 2100: people affected, people at risk, capital value at loss, land at loss, wetland at loss, potential adaptation costs, people at risk assuming this adaptation. Many national assessments have been implemented (Nicholls, et al. 1995) and a global assessment was proposed for three indicators (Nicholls, et al. 1999). The DINAS-Coast project reuses this methodology to produce the DIVA-tool for coastal managers (Vafeidis, et al. 2004). Besides, many other methodologies for national or regional coastal vulnerability assessments have been developed (review by (UNFCCC. 2008). The use of aggregated vulnerability indicators (including geomorphology, hydrodynamics, climate change…) is widespread: the USGS coastal vulnerability index is used worldwide and was completed by a social vulnerability index (Boruff, et al. 2005). Those index-based methods propose a vulnerability mapping which visualise indicators of erosion, submersion and/or socio economic sensibility in coastal zones

  8. Natural phenomena hazards, Hanford Site, Washington

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Conrads, T.J.


    This document presents the natural phenomena hazard loads for use in implementing DOE Order 5480.28, Natural Phenomena Hazards Mitigation, and supports development of double-shell tank systems specifications at the Hanford Site in south-central Washington State. The natural phenomena covered are seismic, flood, wind, volcanic ash, lightning, snow, temperature, solar radiation, suspended sediment, and relative humidity

  9. Resilience to Interacting multi-natural hazards (United States)

    Zhuo, Lu; Han, Dawei


    Conventional analyses of hazard assessment tend to focus on individual hazards in isolation. However, many parts of the world are usually affected by multiple natural hazards with the potential for interacting relationships. The understanding of such interactions, their impacts and the related uncertainties, are an important and topical area of research. Interacting multi-hazards may appear in different forms, including 1) CASCADING HAZARDS (a primary hazard triggering one or more secondary hazards such as an earthquake triggering landslides which may block river channels with dammed lakes and ensued floods), 2) CONCURRING HAZARDS (two or more primary hazards coinciding to trigger or exacerbate secondary hazards such as an earthquake and a rainfall event simultaneously creating landslides), and 3) ALTERING HAZARDS (a primary hazard increasing the probability of a secondary hazard occurring such as major earthquakes disturbing soil/rock materials by violent ground shaking which alter the regional patterns of landslides and debris flows in the subsequent years to come). All three types of interacting multi-hazards may occur in natural hazard prone regions, so it is important that research on hazard resilience should cover all of them. In the past decades, great progresses have been made in tackling disaster risk around the world. However, there are still many challenging issues to be solved, and the disasters over recent years have clearly demonstrated the inadequate resilience in our highly interconnected and interdependent systems. We have identified the following weaknesses and knowledge gaps in the current disaster risk management: 1) although our understanding in individual hazards has been greatly improved, there is a lack of sound knowledge about mechanisms and processes of interacting multi-hazards. Therefore, the resultant multi-hazard risk is often significantly underestimated with severe consequences. It is also poorly understood about the spatial and

  10. Natural phenomena hazards, Hanford Site, south central Washington

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tallman, A.M.


    This document presents the natural phenomena hazard (NPH) loads for use in implementing DOE Order 5480.28, Natural Phenomena Hazards Mitigation, at the Hanford Site in south-central Washington State. The purpose of this document is twofold: (1) summarize the NPH that are important to the design and evaluation of structures, systems, and components at the Hanford Site; (2) develop the appropriate natural phenomena loads for use in the implementation of DOE Order 5480.28. The supporting standards, DOE-STD-1020-94, Natural Phenomena Hazards Design and Evaluation Criteria for Department of Energy Facilities (DOE 1994a); DOE-STD-1022-94, Natural Phenomena Hazards Site Characteristics Criteria (DOE 1994b); and DOE-STD-1023-95, Natural Phenomena Hazards Assessment Criteria (DOE 1995) are the basis for developing the NPH loads

  11. Regulatory Activities to the Natural Hazard

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Choi, Kangryong; Jung, Raeyoung


    The safety of the Nuclear Power Plants(NPPs) against the natural hazards has been investigated focused on earthquake and tsunami. Since the mass media and general people have high interests on nuclear safety whenever the natural hazards occur, earthquake and tsunami are not only technical safety concern, but also psychological issues in terms of public acceptance of nuclear energy. The Korean peninsula has been considered as a safe zone compared to neighboring countries against natural hazard, but the historical documents which state severely damaged events due to the strong earthquake make US paying careful attention to assure the safety against natural phenomenon. The potential and characteristics of earthquake and tsunami have been examined, and the status of seismic and tsunami safety of the NPPs in Korea is described. the follow-up action after disastrous huge earthquake and tsunami occurred in neighboring countries is summarized as well. The assessment results show that the NPPs in Korea are well designed, constructed and maintained with certain amount of safety margin against natural hazards, and the utility and the regulatory body are continuously doing an effort to enhance the safety with consideration of lessons learned from big events in other countries

  12. Assessing Natural Hazard Vulnerability Through Marmara Region Using GIS (United States)

    Sabuncu, A.; Garagon Dogru, A.; Ozener, H.


    Natural hazards are natural phenomenon occured in the Earth's system that include geological and meteorological events such as earthquakes, floods, landslides, droughts, fires and tsunamis. The metropolitan cities are vulnerable to natural hazards due to their population densities, industrial facilities and proporties. The urban layout of the megacities are complex since industrial facilities are interference with residential area. The Marmara region is placed in North-western Turkey suffered from natural hazards (earthquakes, floods etc.) for years. After 1999 Kocaeli and Duzce earthquakes and 2009 Istanbul flash floods, dramatic number of casualities and economic losses were reported by the authorities. Geographic information systems (GIS) have substantial capacity in order to develop natural disaster management. As these systems provide more efficient and reliable analysis and evaluation of the data in the management, and also convenient and better solutions for the decision making before during and after the natural hazards. The Earth science data and socio-economic data can be integrated into a GIS as different layers. Additionally, satellite data are used to understand the changes pre and post the natural hazards. GIS is a powerful software for the combination of different type of digital data. A natural hazard database for the Marmara region provides all different types of digital data to the users. All proper data collection processing and analysing are critical to evaluate and identify hazards. The natural hazard database allows users to monitor, analyze and query past and recent disasters in the Marmara Region. The long term aim of this study is to develop geodatabase and identify the natural hazard vulnerabilities of the metropolitan cities.

  13. Natural Hazards Image Database (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Photographs and other visual media provide valuable pre- and post-event data for natural hazards. Research, mitigation, and forecasting rely on visual data for...

  14. Loss experience from natural phenomena hazards in the Department of Energy (50 years of natural phenomena hazard losses)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hill, J.R.


    This paper presents a historical prespective on losses due to natural hazard incidents (1943-1993) at Department of Energy (DOE) and predecessor agencies including the Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) and the Energy Research and Development Agency (ERDA). This paper also demonstrates how an existing DOE resource can be used to gain valuable insight into injury or property damage incidents. That resource is the Computerized Accident/Incident Reporting System (CAIRS) module of DOE's Safety Performance Measurement System. CAIRS data selected the 1981-1991 DOE injury/illness reports, from all the accident reports of the AEC that cited a natural phenomena hazard as either the direct or indirect cause of the injury/property damage. Specifically, injury or property damage reports were selected for analysis if they had a causal factor link to severe weather or natural phenomena hazard categories. Natural phenomena hazard categories are injury/property damage caused by hurricane/tornado, earthquake, lightning, or flood. Severe weather categories are injury/property damage associated with other than normal weather conditions. The lessons learned, as a result of reviewing case histories, are presented, as are suggestions on how to reduce the likelihood of future injuries/property damage as a result of similar events. A significant finding, is that most injuries and property damage were the result of an indirect causal link to a natural phenomena hazard and thus, may be more preventable than previously thought possible. The primary message, however, is that CAIRS and other incident data bases are valuable resources and should be considered for use by those interested in identifying new ways of protecting the health and safety of the worker and for reducing building losses due to the effects of natural phenomena hazards

  15. The «Natural Hazard WIKISAURUS»: explanation and understanding of natural hazards to build disaster resilience (United States)

    Rapisardi, Elena; Di Franco, Sabina; Giardino, Marco


    In the Internet and Web 2.0 era, the need of information is increased. Moreover, recent major and minor disasters highlighted that information is a crucial element also in emergency management. Informing the population is now the focal point of any civil protection activity and program. Risk perception and social vulnerability become widely discussed issues "when a disaster occurs": a "day-after" approach that should be replaced by a "day-before" one. Is that a cultural problem? Is it a communication issue? As a matter of fact, nowadays academics, experts, institutions are called to be more effective in transferring natural hazards knowledge (technical, operational, historical, social) to the public, for switching from «protection/passivity» (focused on disaster event) to «resilience» (focused on vulnerability). However, this change includes to abandon the "Elites Knowledge" approach and to support "Open Knowledge" and "Open Data" perspectives. Validated scientific information on natural hazards is not yet a common heritage: there are several cases of misleading or inaccurate information published by media. During recent Italian national emergencies [Flash Floods Liguria-Toscana 2011, Earthquake Emilia-Romagna 2012], social media registered people not only asking for news on the disaster event, but also talking trivially about scientific contents on natural hazards. By considering these facts, in the framework of a phD program in Earth Science, a joint team UNITO-NatRisk and CNR-IIA conceived the web project "Natural Hazards Wikisaurus" [NHW], combining two previous experiences: "HyperIspro" - a wiki on civil protection set up by Giuseppe Zamberletti, former Italian minister of Civil Protection - and "Earth Thesaurus", developed by CNR-IIA. The team decided to start from the «words» using both the collaboration of the wiki concept (open and participatory knowledge) and the power of explanation of a thesaurus. Why? Because a word is not enough, as a term has

  16. Natural and technologic hazardous material releases during and after natural disasters: a review. (United States)

    Young, Stacy; Balluz, Lina; Malilay, Josephine


    Natural disasters may be powerful and prominent mechanisms of direct and indirect hazardous material (hazmat) releases. Hazardous materials that are released as the result of a technologic malfunction precipitated by a natural event are referred to as natural-technologic or na-tech events. Na-tech events pose unique environmental and human hazards. Disaster-associated hazardous material releases are of concern, given increases in population density and accelerating industrial development in areas subject to natural disasters. These trends increase the probability of catastrophic future disasters and the potential for mass human exposure to hazardous materials released during disasters. This systematic review summarizes direct and indirect disaster-associated releases, as well as environmental contamination and adverse human health effects that have resulted from natural disaster-related hazmat incidents. Thorough examination of historic disaster-related hazmat releases can be used to identify future threats and improve mitigation and prevention efforts.

  17. The role of new technologies in risks from natural hazards

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gardner, J.S.


    The author places some prior natural hazards research into the context of risk from new technologies to show that some beneficial technologies increase the risk from natural hazards. He examines the role of new technologies in risks from natural hazards in a historical perspective, using examples from research on mountain hazards

  18. Third DOE natural phenomena hazards mitigation conference

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)


    This conference on Natural Phenomena Hazards Mitigation has been organized into 15 presentation, panel, and poster sessions. The sessions included an overview of activities at DOE Headquarters; natural phenomena hazards tasks underway for DOE; two sessions on codes, standards, orders, criteria, and guidelines; two sessions on seismic hazards; equipment qualification; wind; PRA and margin assessments; modifications, retrofit, and restart; underground structures with a panel discussion; seismic analysis; seismic evaluation and design; and a poster session. Individual projects are processed separately for the data bases

  19. Natural hazard and disaster tourism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rucińska Dorota


    Full Text Available An observed trend, which can be defined as tourist interest in natural hazards and disasters, has persuaded the authors to attempt to research several issues, including tourist motivations and specific tourism properties and functions of this form of activity. The objective also covered the allocation of this social and natural process in the general structure of tourism. This interest has a long history, and a new stage is currently forming, which partly results from factors affecting society, such as information and education, which provoke antagonistic reactions. Extreme natural phenomena entail a common reduction of tourist interest in the destination which hosted the event; however, it never drops to zero. Differences are visible depending on the type of phenomenon. On the other hand, natural hazards and disasters are considered to hold a specific tourism value. This article discusses the allocation of this human activity in the tourism forms known to scientists, accounting for its diversity and relating to ethics.

  20. Second DOE natural phenomena hazards mitigation conference

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)


    This conference has been organized into ten presentation sessions which include an overview of the DOE Natural Phenomena Guidelines, Seismic Analysis, Seismic Design, Modifying Existing Facilities, DOE Orders, Codes, and Standards (2 sessions), Seismic Hazard (2 sessions), and Probabilistic Risk Assessment (2 sessions). Two poster sessions were also included in the program to provide a different forum for communication of ideas. Over the past fourteen years, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Nuclear Systems Safety Program, has been working with the US Department of Energy, Office of Safety Appraisals and their predecessors in the area of natural phenomena hazards. During this time we have developed seismic, extreme wind/tornado, and flood hazard models for DOE sites in the United States. Guidelines for designing and evaluating DOE facilities for natural phenomena have been developed and are in interim use throughout the DOE community. A series of state-of-the practice manuals have also been developed to aid the designers. All of this material is listed in the Natural Phenomena Hazards Bibliography included in these proceedings. This conference provides a mechanism to disseminate current information on natural phenomena hazards and their mitigation. It provides an opportunity to bring together members of the DOE community to discuss current projects, to share information, and to hear practicing members of the structural engineering community discuss their experiences from past natural phenomena, future trends, and any changes to building codes. Each paper or poster presented is included in these proceedings. We have also included material related to the luncheon and dinner talks

  1. Sustainable regional development and natural hazard impacts (United States)

    Petrova, Elena; Svetlosanov, Vladimir; Kudin, Valery


    During the last decades, natural hazard impacts on social and economic development in many countries were increasing due to the expansion of human activities into the areas prone to natural risks as well as to increasing in number and severity of natural hazardous events caused by climate changes and other natural phenomena. The escalation of severe disasters (such as Tohoku earthquake and tsunami in Japan 2011) triggered by natural hazards and related natural-technological and environmental events is increasingly threatening sustainable development at different levels from regional to global scale. In our study, we develop a model of ecological, economic and social sustainable development for the European part of Russia and the Republic of Belarus. The model consists of six blocks including 1) population, 2) environment, 3) mineral resources, 4) geographic space, 5) investments, and 6) food production and import. These blocks were created based on the analysis of the main processes at the regional level; all the blocks are closely interrelated between each other. Reaching the limit values of block parameters corresponds to a sharp deterioration of the system; as a result, the system can lose its stability. Aggravation of natural and natural-technological risk impacts on each block and should be taken into account in the model of regional development. Natural hazards can cause both strong influences and small but permanent perturbations. In both cases, a system can become unstable. The criterion for sustainable development is proposed. The Russian Foundation for Humanities and Belorussian Republican Foundation for Fundamental Research supported the study (project 15-22-01008).

  2. Political science, public administration, and natural hazards: contributions and connections (United States)

    Lindquist, E.


    The connection between the natural and social sciences has become stronger, and has increasingly been recognized as a vital component in the area of natural hazards research. Moving applied natural hazards research into the public policy or administration realm is not often easy, or effective. An improved understanding of the connection between the natural and social sciences can assist in this process and result in better public policy, acceptance from the public for these policies, and a safer and better educated public. This paper will present initial findings from a larger data set on natural hazards and social science research. Specifically we will review the current contribution of the formal academic disciplines of political science and public administration within recent natural hazards-related scholarship. The general characteristics of the contributions (e.g. coauthored, interdisciplinary, etc.), specific theories and methods being applied, and the types of natural hazards being scrutinized by these related fields will be assessed. In conclusion we will discuss future contributions and areas for potential collaboration between the natural and social sciences in the area of natural hazards research.

  3. Conceptual geoinformation model of natural hazards risk assessment (United States)

    Kulygin, Valerii


    Natural hazards are the major threat to safe interactions between nature and society. The assessment of the natural hazards impacts and their consequences is important in spatial planning and resource management. Today there is a challenge to advance our understanding of how socio-economical and climate changes will affect the frequency and magnitude of hydro-meteorological hazards and associated risks. However, the impacts from different types of natural hazards on various marine and coastal economic activities are not of the same type. In this study, the conceptual geomodel of risk assessment is presented to highlight the differentiation by the type of economic activities in extreme events risk assessment. The marine and coastal ecosystems are considered as the objects of management, on the one hand, and as the place of natural hazards' origin, on the other hand. One of the key elements in describing of such systems is the spatial characterization of their components. Assessment of ecosystem state is based on ecosystem indicators (indexes). They are used to identify the changes in time. The scenario approach is utilized to account for the spatio-temporal dynamics and uncertainty factors. Two types of scenarios are considered: scenarios of using ecosystem services by economic activities and scenarios of extreme events and related hazards. The reported study was funded by RFBR, according to the research project No. 16-35-60043 mol_a_dk.

  4. Afghanistan Multi-Risk Assessment to Natural Hazards (United States)

    Diermanse, Ferdinand; Daniell, James; Pollino, Maurizio; Glover, James; Bouwer, Laurens; de Bel, Mark; Schaefer, Andreas; Puglisi, Claudio; Winsemius, Hessel; Burzel, Andreas; Ammann, Walter; Aliparast, Mojtaba; Jongman, Brenden; Ranghieri, Federica; Fallesen, Ditte


    The geographical location of Afghanistan and years of environmental degradation in the country make Afghanistan highly prone to intense and recurring natural hazards such as flooding, earthquakes, snow avalanches, landslides, and droughts. These occur in addition to man-made disasters resulting in the frequent loss of live, livelihoods, and property. Since 1980, disasters caused by natural hazards have affected 9 million people and caused over 20,000 fatalities in Afghanistan. The creation, understanding and accessibility of hazard, exposure, vulnerability and risk information is key for effective management of disaster risk. This is especially true in Afghanistan, where reconstruction after recent natural disasters and military conflicts is on-going and will continue over the coming years. So far, there has been limited disaster risk information produced in Afghanistan, and information that does exist typically lacks standard methodology and does not have uniform geo-spatial coverage. There are currently no available risk assessment studies that cover all major natural hazards in Afghanistan, which can be used to assess the costs and benefits of different resilient reconstruction and disaster risk reduction strategies. As a result, the Government of Afghanistan has limited information regarding current and future disaster risk and the effectiveness of policy options on which to base their reconstruction and risk reduction decisions. To better understand natural hazard and disaster risk, the World Bank and Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR) are supporting the development of new fluvial flood, flash flood, drought, landslide, avalanche and seismic risk information in Afghanistan, as well as a first-order analysis of the costs and benefits of resilient reconstruction and risk reduction strategies undertaken by the authors. The hazard component is the combination of probability and magnitude of natural hazards. Hazard analyses were carried out

  5. Natural Hazards Science at the U.S. Geological Survey (United States)

    Perry, Suzanne C.; Jones, Lucile M.; Holmes, Robert R.


    The mission of the USGS in natural hazards is to develop and apply hazard science to help protect the safety, security, and economic well-being of the Nation. The costs and consequences of natural hazards can be enormous, and each year more people and infrastructure are at risk. The USGS conducts hazard research and works closely with stakeholders and cooperators to inform a broad range of planning and response activities at individual, local, State, national, and international levels. It has critical statutory and nonstatutory roles regarding floods, earthquakes, tsunamis, landslides, coastal erosion, volcanic eruptions, wildfires, and magnetic storms. USGS science can help to understand and reduce risks from natural hazards by providing the information that decisionmakers need to determine which risk management activities are worth­while.

  6. Bayesian network learning for natural hazard assessments (United States)

    Vogel, Kristin


    Even though quite different in occurrence and consequences, from a modelling perspective many natural hazards share similar properties and challenges. Their complex nature as well as lacking knowledge about their driving forces and potential effects make their analysis demanding. On top of the uncertainty about the modelling framework, inaccurate or incomplete event observations and the intrinsic randomness of the natural phenomenon add up to different interacting layers of uncertainty, which require a careful handling. Thus, for reliable natural hazard assessments it is crucial not only to capture and quantify involved uncertainties, but also to express and communicate uncertainties in an intuitive way. Decision-makers, who often find it difficult to deal with uncertainties, might otherwise return to familiar (mostly deterministic) proceedings. In the scope of the DFG research training group „NatRiskChange" we apply the probabilistic framework of Bayesian networks for diverse natural hazard and vulnerability studies. The great potential of Bayesian networks was already shown in previous natural hazard assessments. Treating each model component as random variable, Bayesian networks aim at capturing the joint distribution of all considered variables. Hence, each conditional distribution of interest (e.g. the effect of precautionary measures on damage reduction) can be inferred. The (in-)dependencies between the considered variables can be learned purely data driven or be given by experts. Even a combination of both is possible. By translating the (in-)dependences into a graph structure, Bayesian networks provide direct insights into the workings of the system and allow to learn about the underlying processes. Besides numerous studies on the topic, learning Bayesian networks from real-world data remains challenging. In previous studies, e.g. on earthquake induced ground motion and flood damage assessments, we tackled the problems arising with continuous variables

  7. Introduction to Plate Boundaries and Natural Hazards

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Duarte, João C.; Schellart, Wouter P.


    A great variety of natural hazards occur on Earth, including earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, tsunamis, landslides, floods, fires, tornadoes, hurricanes, and avalanches. The most destructive of these hazards, earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanic eruptions, are mostly associated with tectonic plate

  8. Integrating Real-time Earthquakes into Natural Hazard Courses (United States)

    Furlong, K. P.; Benz, H. M.; Whitlock, J. S.; Bittenbinder, A. N.; Bogaert, B. B.


    Natural hazard courses are playing an increasingly important role in college and university earth science curricula. Students' intrinsic curiosity about the subject and the potential to make the course relevant to the interests of both science and non-science students make natural hazards courses popular additions to a department's offerings. However, one vital aspect of "real-life" natural hazard management that has not translated well into the classroom is the real-time nature of both events and response. The lack of a way to entrain students into the event/response mode has made implementing such real-time activities into classroom activities problematic. Although a variety of web sites provide near real-time postings of natural hazards, students essentially learn of the event after the fact. This is particularly true for earthquakes and other events with few precursors. As a result, the "time factor" and personal responsibility associated with natural hazard response is lost to the students. We have integrated the real-time aspects of earthquake response into two natural hazard courses at Penn State (a 'general education' course for non-science majors, and an upper-level course for science majors) by implementing a modification of the USGS Earthworm system. The Earthworm Database Management System (E-DBMS) catalogs current global seismic activity. It provides earthquake professionals with real-time email/cell phone alerts of global seismic activity and access to the data for review/revision purposes. We have modified this system so that real-time response can be used to address specific scientific, policy, and social questions in our classes. As a prototype of using the E-DBMS in courses, we have established an Earthworm server at Penn State. This server receives national and global seismic network data and, in turn, transmits the tailored alerts to "on-duty" students (e-mail, pager/cell phone notification). These students are responsible to react to the alarm

  9. Reviewing and visualizing the interactions of natural hazards (United States)

    Gill, Joel C.; Malamud, Bruce D.


    This paper presents a broad overview, characterization, and visualization of the interaction relationships between 21 natural hazards, drawn from six hazard groups (geophysical, hydrological, shallow Earth, atmospheric, biophysical, and space hazards). A synthesis is presented of the identified interaction relationships between these hazards, using an accessible visual format particularly suited to end users. Interactions considered are primarily those where a primary hazard triggers or increases the probability of secondary hazards occurring. In this paper we do the following: (i) identify, through a wide-ranging review of grey- and peer-review literature, 90 interactions; (ii) subdivide the interactions into three levels, based on how well we can characterize secondary hazards, given information about the primary hazard; (iii) determine the spatial overlap and temporal likelihood of the triggering relationships occurring; and (iv) examine the relationship between primary and secondary hazard intensities for each identified hazard interaction and group these into five possible categories. In this study we have synthesized, using accessible visualization techniques, large amounts of information drawn from many scientific disciplines. We outline the importance of constraining hazard interactions and reinforce the importance of a holistic (or multihazard) approach to natural hazard assessment. This approach allows those undertaking research into single hazards to place their work within the context of other hazards. It also communicates important aspects of hazard interactions, facilitating an effective analysis by those working on reducing and managing disaster risk within both the policy and practitioner communities.

  10. Natural hazards Early career scientist Team (NhET), a newborn group bridging science to a broader community (United States)

    Lombardo, Luigi; Cigala, Valeria; Rizzi, Jonathan; Craciun, Iulya; Gain, Animesh Kumar; Albano, Raffaele


    Alongside with other major EGU divisions, Natural Hazard has recently formed his Early Career Scientist (ECS) team, known as NhET. NhET was born in 2016 and its scope includes various activities for the EGU members, the international scientific community as well as for the general public. We are a group of six early career researchers, either PhDs or Post-Docs, from different fields of Natural Hazard, keen to promote knowledge exchanges and collaborations. This is done by organizing courses, training sessions and social activities, especially targeting ECSs, during the EGU General Assembly for this year and the next to come. Outside the timeframe of the EGU conference, we constantly promote EGU contents for our division. This is done through the division website (, a mailing list (!forum/nhet) and social media. With respect to the latter, a new Facebook page will be launched shortly and other platforms such as Twitter will be used to reach a broader audience. These platforms will foster the transmission of Natural Hazard topics to anyone who is interested. The main content will be researchers' interviews, information about open positions, trainings, open source software, conferences together with news on hazards and their anthropic and environmental impacts. We are NhET and we invite you all to follow and collaborate with us for a more dynamic, efficient and widespread scientific communication.

  11. Natural Hazards, Poverty Traps versus Economic Growth (United States)

    Netti, Dr.


    Governments, even in developed countries, devote too scarce resources to coping (ex-ante) with natural hazards; as a consequence of this short-sightedness, (ex-post) direct and indirect effects of catastrophic events deeply compromise the economic growth. Protective measures against natural hazards mean complex choices involving the opinions of multidisciplinary groups of experts in the fields of ecology, civic and geotechnical engineering, geology, meteorology, law and economics. Moreover, tools and choices affect different stakeholders: politicians, producers, consumers, taxpayers and voters. Complementarity between informed rationality and democracy need to be recognized and guaranteed as too often the perceptions of the majority of the stakeholders involved about natural hazards are not consistent with any objective information about the catastrophic event. The interaction between strict budget constraints, extremely high degrees of uncertainty, risk-aversion and credit rationing, trade-off between democracy and rationality, are the main causes of potential 'poverty traps'. First of all we believe that the 'reconstruction output' to be included in GDP as an ex-post effect of a natural hazard is a forced investment much more effective in crowding-out other consumption and investment and less effective for growth than investments aiming at increasing, ex-ante, the resiliency of the economy. Keynes' 'Animal Spirits' are embedded in positive expectation for future gains especially if not concentrated in reconstruction procurement sectors but spread across different sectors of the economy. The increased demand for reconstruction goods and services may act in both directions depending on the phase of the business cycles in which the economy is. Risk premiums for risk-averter investors increase in consequence of a natural hazard event; this restrict budget constraints and strengthen credit rationing. A mere replacement effect of the destroyed capital by a more

  12. Geoethics and natural hazards: general reflections on the relationship between geoscientists and society (United States)

    Peppoloni, Silvia


    The development of modern science has changed the relationship between humans and natural phenomena. The great geoscientists of the past have contributed to the construction of the modern world, by revolutionizing the way in which humans perceive themselves, by changing their references of space and time inside the Universe. However, in the majority of the populations is observed the persistence of a fatalistic mentality or an attitude which believes that science can solve everything. In fact, throughout the centuries the fear of earthquakes, eruptions, floods has not changed in humans. The scientific rational approach is certainly an effective way to limit the scope of irrationality and uncertainty. The fear is not eliminable, but the proper dissemination of scientific knowledge and an adequate preparedness can help to mitigate it and transform it into an attitude of respect for the natural processes that govern the Geosphere. Therefore, geoscientists have a great responsibility towards society, which needs to face natural hazards. They have the duty to transfer knowledge and methods, to communicate information and errors, to awaken in people the interest for the phenomena and their evolution. Ultimately, geoscientists can contribute to bring science closer to society. The lack of involvement in scientific knowledge of the various components of society (citizens, politicians, mass media) can lead to two negative consequences: • the cultural and social marginalization of scientists, together with a loss of the sense of the role they can play in protecting society from natural hazards; • the tendency of people to embrace preconceived ideas in non critical way, ideas provided by a media information often incorrect, to lose good sense, until to develop fideistic attitudes based on few observed elements. In the scientific field the probabilistic method is a widespread way to analyze the natural phenomena. It allows to give an estimate of time, place and size of an

  13. Periurbanisation and natural hazards

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Delphine Loison


    Full Text Available In mountainous areas in recent decades urbanisation has expanded to areas where low ground adjoins mountainsides that are unstable in a number of respects. Periurbanisation in mountain basins with unstable sides poses specific problems that local players have to address. The Lavanchon basin (southeast of Grenoble, which is subject to very rapid urban growth combined with particularly dynamic mountainsides, is representative of the way activity is being brought into closer contact with potential hazards. A diachronic study of changes in land use between 1956 and 2001 shows how valley infrastructures at the bottom of mountainsides have become increasingly dense. In this context, a survey was carried out among a number of residents in the Lavanchon basin in an attempt to evaluate the degree of awareness that the population has of the natural hazards to which it is exposed. The results show that slightly more than half of the population surveyed was aware of the problem of natural hazards being present in the area, with most inhabitants being more concerned about industrial and pollution hazards. New residents were unaware of or were unwilling to accept the reality of hazards. The low incidence of significant natural events, the effectiveness of the protective structures built, the absence of information provided by the public authorities and the division of the basin between several management bodies appear to have engendered a feeling of safety from natural phenomena. The geographical distribution of appreciation of the hazard clearly shows a distinction between those inhabitants living on the low ground and those at the bottom of the mountainsides, and this corresponds fairly closely with the historical and current location of the main potentially hazardous events that have occurred.Dans les territoires de montagne, les dernières décennies ont vu l’expansion de l’urbanisation vers les zones de contact entre la plaine et les versants, lieux

  14. Assessing natural hazard risk using images and data (United States)

    Mccullough, H. L.; Dunbar, P. K.; Varner, J. D.; Mungov, G.


    Photographs and other visual media provide valuable pre- and post-event data for natural hazard assessment. Scientific research, mitigation, and forecasting rely on visual data for risk analysis, inundation mapping and historic records. Instrumental data only reveal a portion of the whole story; photographs explicitly illustrate the physical and societal impacts from the event. Visual data is rapidly increasing as the availability of portable high resolution cameras and video recorders becomes more attainable. Incorporating these data into archives ensures a more complete historical account of events. Integrating natural hazards data, such as tsunami, earthquake and volcanic eruption events, socio-economic information, and tsunami deposits and runups along with images and photographs enhances event comprehension. Global historic databases at NOAA's National Geophysical Data Center (NGDC) consolidate these data, providing the user with easy access to a network of information. NGDC's Natural Hazards Image Database ( was recently improved to provide a more efficient and dynamic user interface. It uses the Google Maps API and Keyhole Markup Language (KML) to provide geographic context to the images and events. Descriptive tags, or keywords, have been applied to each image, enabling easier navigation and discovery. In addition, the Natural Hazards Map Viewer ( provides the ability to search and browse data layers on a Mercator-projection globe with a variety of map backgrounds. This combination of features creates a simple and effective way to enhance our understanding of hazard events and risks using imagery.

  15. Lin Receives 2010 Natural Hazards Focus Group Award for Graduate Research (United States)


    Ning Lin has been awarded the Natural Hazards Focus Group Award for Graduate Research, given annually to a recent Ph.D. recipient for outstanding contributions to natural hazards research. Lin's thesis is entitled “Multi-hazard risk analysis related to hurricanes.” She is scheduled to present an invited talk in the Extreme Natural Events: Modeling, Prediction, and Mitigation session (NH20) during the 2010 AGU Fall Meeting, held 13-17 December in San Francisco, Calif. Lin will be formally presented with the award at the Natural Hazards focus group reception on 14 December 2010.

  16. Playing against nature: improving earthquake hazard mitigation (United States)

    Stein, S. A.; Stein, J.


    The great 2011 Tohoku earthquake dramatically demonstrated the need to improve earthquake and tsunami hazard assessment and mitigation policies. The earthquake was much larger than predicted by hazard models, and the resulting tsunami overtopped coastal defenses, causing more than 15,000 deaths and $210 billion damage. Hence if and how such defenses should be rebuilt is a challenging question, because the defences fared poorly and building ones to withstand tsunamis as large as March's is too expensive,. A similar issue arises along the Nankai Trough to the south, where new estimates warning of tsunamis 2-5 times higher than in previous models raise the question of what to do, given that the timescale on which such events may occur is unknown. Thus in the words of economist H. Hori, "What should we do in face of uncertainty? Some say we should spend our resources on present problems instead of wasting them on things whose results are uncertain. Others say we should prepare for future unknown disasters precisely because they are uncertain". Thus society needs strategies to mitigate earthquake and tsunami hazards that make economic and societal sense, given that our ability to assess these hazards is poor, as illustrated by highly destructive earthquakes that often occur in areas predicted by hazard maps to be relatively safe. Conceptually, we are playing a game against nature "of which we still don't know all the rules" (Lomnitz, 1989). Nature chooses tsunami heights or ground shaking, and society selects the strategy to minimize the total costs of damage plus mitigation costs. As in any game of chance, we maximize our expectation value by selecting the best strategy, given our limited ability to estimate the occurrence and effects of future events. We thus outline a framework to find the optimal level of mitigation by balancing its cost against the expected damages, recognizing the uncertainties in the hazard estimates. This framework illustrates the role of the

  17. Natural and Man-Made Hazards in the Cayman Islands (United States)

    Novelo-Casanova, D. A.; Suarez, G.


    Located in the western Caribbean Sea to the northwest of Jamaica, the Cayman Islands are a British overseas territory comprised of three islands: Grand Cayman, Cayman Brac, and Little Cayman. These three islands occupy around 250 km2 of land area. In this work, historical and recent data were collected and classified to identify and rank the natural and man-made hazards that may potentially affect the Cayman Islands and determine the level of exposure of Grand Cayman to these events. With this purpose, we used the vulnerability assessment methodology developed by the North Caroline Department of Environment and Natural Resources. The different degrees of physical vulnerability for each hazard were graphically interpreted with the aid of maps using a relative scoring system. Spatial maps were generated showing the areas of different levels of exposure to multi-hazards. The more important natural hazard to which the Cayman Islands are exposed is clearly hurricanes. To a lesser degree, the islands may be occasionally exposed to earthquakes and tsunamis. Explosions or leaks of the Airport Texaco Fuel Depot and the fuel pipeline at Grand Cayman are the most significant man-made hazards. Our results indicate that there are four areas in Grand Cayman with various levels of exposure to natural and man-made hazards: The North Sound, Little Sound and Eastern West Bay (Area 1) show a very high level of exposure; The Central Mangroves, Central Bodden Town, Central George Town and the West Bay (Area 2) have high level of exposure; The Northwestern West Bay, Western Georgetown-Bodden Town, and East End-North Side (Area 3) are under moderate levels of exposure. The remainder of the island shows low exposure (Area 4). It is important to underline that this study presents a first evaluation of the main natural and man-made hazards that may affect the Cayman Islands. The maps generated will be useful tools for emergency managers and policy developers and will increase the overall

  18. Are Global Economic Losses from Natural Hazards Increasing? (United States)

    McMullan, Caroline; Simic, Milan; Tosco, Antonello; Latchman, Shane


    Global society has long been influenced by natural hazards, but it has been widely noted that the economic cost of natural hazards has been rising rapidly over recent decades. This upward trend highlights the increasing exposure of the global economy to natural hazards and the need for society to understand the driving factors to help improve the resilience of communities. However disaster risk is driven by a plethora of factors, including population, wealth, land-use, and demographics. Consider also the natural variability in the frequency and severity of events, climate change, and implementation of resilience policies, and it becomes clear that disaster-risk management is a challenging field. To investigate the apparent upward trend in reported annual economic losses from natural disasters, socioeconomic factors known to influence the magnitude of losses must first be accounted for. Adjustment for these factors, known as loss normalisation, aims to estimate the losses sustained if historical events were to impact present day society. We have undertaken a detailed assessment of global economic losses from natural disasters for the period 1995 through 2013. Although the studied time-period is relatively short, expanding the investigated period would not necessarily produce more reliable insights owing to the inherent difficulty in obtaining accurate economic loss estimates for earlier periods and the challenge of finding consistent and reliable sources of socioeconomic data for the normalisation process. The results of the study, presented at a global and regional level, appear to suggest that the main driver of perceived increase in economic losses over the last ~20 years was the development of nations' economies (i.e. increase in population and wealth/GDP) and not in the natural hazards themselves. As populations all over the world migrate into areas of higher natural hazards regions (e.g. coastal areas or floodplain zones) and global wealth continues to

  19. Globe of Natural Hazard - A new assessment tool for risk managers (United States)

    Siebert, A. C.


    A large number of tropical cyclones and the earthquake in Sichuan made 2008 one of the most devastating years on record. Throughout the world, more than 220,000 people died as a result of natural catastrophes this year. Overall losses totaled some US 200bn (2007: US 82bn). Insured losses in 2008 rose to US 45bn, about 50% higher than in the previous year. Mainly driven by high losses from weather-related natural catastrophes, 2008 was - on the basis of figures adjusted for inflation - even the third most expensive year on record for the insurance industry, exceeded only by the hurricane year of 2005 and by 1995, the year of the Kobe earthquake. Munich Re, a worldwide operating reinsurance company, is a world leader in terms of investigating risks from natural hazards of all kinds. 2008 has again shown the insurance industry how important it is to analyse risks like natural hazards and climate change in all their facets and to manage the insurance business accordingly. An excellent example of the wealth of knowledge Munich Re has developed in natural hazard assessment is the DVD "Globe of Natural Hazards". It combines the geoscientific data and findings Munich Re has accumulated over a period of 35 years. First devised as a wall-map in 1978, the product has established itself as a standard work for the identification, exposure assessment and risk management of natural hazards. Over 80,000 copies of the CD-ROM version of 2000 have been provided to clients - a mark achieved by no other service product in Munich Re's history. Since the beginning of 2009, the fully updated fourth-generation version has been available. The bilingual DVD (German and English) shows natural hazards and climate effects at a glance: the global maps are presented on a 3D globe, underlaid with satellite images. The hazard complexes of hail, tornado and winter storms have been completely revised and flood incorporated as a new hazard. Users can intuitively home in on and enlarge any location on

  20. Climate change and natural hazards in the Arctic (United States)

    Eichelberger, J. C.; Eichelberger, L. P.


    Climate change is motivating much of the science research in the Arctic. Natural hazards, which have always been with us and can be influenced by climate, also pose a serious threat to sustainability of Arctic communities, the Native cultures they support, and the health and wellbeing of their residents. These are themes of the US Chairship of the Arctic Council. For example, repetitive floods, often associated with spring ice jams, are a particularly severe problem for river communities. People live near rivers because access to food, water and river transportation support an indigenous subsistence lifestyle. Some settlement sites for Indigenous Peoples were mandated by distant authorities without regard to natural hazards, in Alaska no less than in other countries. Thus bad policy of the past casts a long shadow into the future. Remote communities are subject to multiple challenges, including natural hazards, access to education, and limited job opportunities. These intersect to reproduce structural vulnerability and have over time created a need for substantial support from government. In the past 40 years, the themes of "sustainability" and "self reliance" have become prominent strategies for governance at both state and local levels. Communities now struggle to demonstrate their sustainability while grappling with natural hazards and chronic poverty. In the extreme, the shifting of responsibility to resource-poor communities can be called "structural violence". Accepting the status quo can mean living without sanitation and reliable water supply, leading to the high observed rates of disease not normally encountered in developed countries. Many of the efforts to address climate change and natural hazards are complementary: monitoring the environment; forecasting extreme events; and community-based participatory research and planning. Natural disaster response is complementary to the Arctic Council's Search and Rescue (SAR) initiative, differing in that those

  1. Perception of Natural Hazards and Risk among University of Washington Students (United States)

    Herr, K.; Brand, B.; Hamlin, N.; Ou, J.; Thomas, B.; Tudor, E.


    Familiarity with a given population's perception of natural hazards and the threats they present is vital for the development of effective education prior to and emergency management response after a natural event. While much work has been done in other active tectonic regions, perception of natural hazards and risk among Pacific Northwest (PNW) residents is poorly constrained. The objective of this work is to assess the current perception of earthquake and volcanic hazards and risk in the PNW, and to better understand the factors which drive the public's behavior concerning preparedness and response. We developed a survey to assess the knowledge of natural hazards common to the region, their perception of risk concerning these hazards, and their level of preparedness should a natural hazard occur. The survey was distributed to University of Washington students and employees via an internet link as part of a class project in 'Living with Volcanoes' (ESS 106) in March of 2012, which returned more than 900 responses. The UW student population was chosen as our first "population" to assess because of their uniqueness as a large, semi-transient population (typical residence of less than 5 years). Only 50% of participants correctly reported their proximity to an active volcano, indicating either lack of knowledge of active volcanoes in the region or poor spatial awareness. When asked which area were most at risk to lahars, respondents indicated that all areas close to the hazard source, including topographically elevated regions, were at a higher risk than more distal and low-lying localities that are also at high risk, indicating a lack of knowledge concerning the topographic dependency of this hazard. Participants perceived themselves to be able to cope better with an earthquake than a volcanic event. This perception may be due to lack of knowledge of volcanic hazards and their extent or due to a false sense of security concerning earthquakes fostered by regular

  2. Opinion: The use of natural hazard modeling for decision making under uncertainty (United States)

    David E. Calkin; Mike Mentis


    Decision making to mitigate the effects of natural hazards is a complex undertaking fraught with uncertainty. Models to describe risks associated with natural hazards have proliferated in recent years. Concurrently, there is a growing body of work focused on developing best practices for natural hazard modeling and to create structured evaluation criteria for complex...

  3. Summary of Natural Hazard Statistics for 2017 in the United States (United States)

    Summary of Natural Hazard Statistics for 2017 in the United States This National Weather Service (NWS) report ... and the National Climatic Data Center compiled this Summary of U.S. Natural Hazard Statistics from Storm Data, ...

  4. Coping with volcanic hazards; a global perspective (United States)

    Tilling, R.I.


    Compared to some other natural hazards-such as floods, storms, earthquakes, landslides- volcanic hazards strike infrequently. However, in populated areas , even very small eruptions can wreak havoc and cause widespread devastation. For example, the 13 November 1985 eruption of Nevado del Ruiz in Colombia ejected only about 3 percent of the volume of ash produced during the 18 May 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens. Yet, the mudflows triggered by this tiny eruption killed more than 25,000 people.

  5. Radar image and data fusion for natural hazards characterisation (United States)

    Lu, Zhong; Dzurisin, Daniel; Jung, Hyung-Sup; Zhang, Jixian; Zhang, Yonghong


    Fusion of synthetic aperture radar (SAR) images through interferometric, polarimetric and tomographic processing provides an all - weather imaging capability to characterise and monitor various natural hazards. This article outlines interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR) processing and products and their utility for natural hazards characterisation, provides an overview of the techniques and applications related to fusion of SAR/InSAR images with optical and other images and highlights the emerging SAR fusion technologies. In addition to providing precise land - surface digital elevation maps, SAR - derived imaging products can map millimetre - scale elevation changes driven by volcanic, seismic and hydrogeologic processes, by landslides and wildfires and other natural hazards. With products derived from the fusion of SAR and other images, scientists can monitor the progress of flooding, estimate water storage changes in wetlands for improved hydrological modelling predictions and assessments of future flood impacts and map vegetation structure on a global scale and monitor its changes due to such processes as fire, volcanic eruption and deforestation. With the availability of SAR images in near real - time from multiple satellites in the near future, the fusion of SAR images with other images and data is playing an increasingly important role in understanding and forecasting natural hazards.


    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    KRIPPS, L.J.


    This technical basis document was developed to support the documented safety analysis (DSA) and describes the risk binning process and the technical basis for assigning risk bins for natural event hazard (NEH)-initiated accidents. The purpose of the risk binning process is to determine the need for safety-significant structures, systems, and components (SSC) and technical safety requirement (TSR)-level controls for a given representative accident or represented hazardous conditions based on an evaluation of the frequency and consequence. Note that the risk binning process is not applied to facility workers, because all facility worker hazardous conditions are considered for safety-significant SSCs and/or TSR-level controls

  7. Environmental legislation as the legal framework for mitigating natural hazards in Spain (United States)

    Garrido, Jesús; Arana, Estanislao; Jiménez Soto, Ignacio; Delgado, José


    In Spain, the socioeconomic losses due to natural hazards (floods, earthquakes or landslides) are considerable, and the indirect costs associated with them are rarely considered because they are very difficult to evaluate. The prevention of losses due to natural hazards is more economic and efficient through legislation and spatial planning rather than through structural measures, such as walls, anchorages or structural reinforcements. However, there isn't a Spanish natural hazards law and national and regional sector legislation make only sparse mention of them. After 1978, when the Spanish Constitution was enacted, the Autonomous Communities (Spanish regions) were able to legislate according to the different competences (urban planning, environment or civil protection), which were established in the Constitution. In the 1990's, the Civil Protection legislation (national law and regional civil protection tools) dealt specifically with natural hazards (floods, earthquakes and volcanoes), but this was before any soil, seismic or hydrological studies were recommended in the national sector legislation. On the other hand, some Autonomous Communities referred to natural hazards in the Environmental Impact Assessment legislation (EIA) and also in the spatial and urban planning legislation and tools. The National Land Act, enacted in 1998, established, for the first time, that those lands exposed to natural hazards should be classified as non-developable. The Spanish recast text of the Land Act, enacted by Royal Legislative Decree 2/2008, requires that a natural hazards map be included in the Environmental Sustainability Report (ESR), which is compulsory for all master plans, according to the provisions set out by Act 9/2006, known as Spanish Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA). Consequently, the environmental legislation, after the aforementioned transposition of the SEA European Directive 2001/42/EC, is the legal framework to prevent losses due to natural hazards

  8. Natural Hazards Observer: Volume 26, Number 1, September 2001

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library


    The Natural Hazards Research and Applications Information Center was founded to strengthen communication among researchers and the individuals and organizations concerned with mitigating natural disasters...

  9. Natural Hazards Observer. Volume 17. Number 4, March 2003

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library


    The NATURAL HAZARDS RESEARCH AND APPLICATIONS INFORMATION CENTER was founded to strengthen communication among researchers and the individuals and organizations concerned with mitigating natural disasters...

  10. Processing LiDAR Data to Predict Natural Hazards (United States)

    Fairweather, Ian; Crabtree, Robert; Hager, Stacey


    ELF-Base and ELF-Hazards (wherein 'ELF' signifies 'Extract LiDAR Features' and 'LiDAR' signifies 'light detection and ranging') are developmental software modules for processing remote-sensing LiDAR data to identify past natural hazards (principally, landslides) and predict future ones. ELF-Base processes raw LiDAR data, including LiDAR intensity data that are often ignored in other software, to create digital terrain models (DTMs) and digital feature models (DFMs) with sub-meter accuracy. ELF-Hazards fuses raw LiDAR data, data from multispectral and hyperspectral optical images, and DTMs and DFMs generated by ELF-Base to generate hazard risk maps. Advanced algorithms in these software modules include line-enhancement and edge-detection algorithms, surface-characterization algorithms, and algorithms that implement innovative data-fusion techniques. The line-extraction and edge-detection algorithms enable users to locate such features as faults and landslide headwall scarps. Also implemented in this software are improved methodologies for identification and mapping of past landslide events by use of (1) accurate, ELF-derived surface characterizations and (2) three LiDAR/optical-data-fusion techniques: post-classification data fusion, maximum-likelihood estimation modeling, and hierarchical within-class discrimination. This software is expected to enable faster, more accurate forecasting of natural hazards than has previously been possible.

  11. Public-private provision of protection measures against natural hazards (United States)

    Gruber, M.


    Natural hazards threaten human lives as well as economic values of a society. Due to an increasing population density, augmenting property holdings in congested areas as well as higher frequencies of catastrophic events, the damage potential associated with natural hazards is growing. In order to safeguard societal assets against this threat, active and passive protection measures can be established. While passive protection measures provide for this type of risk by means of thorough land use planning, active protection measures aim at improving safety through technical or biological protective systems and structures. However, these provisions are costly and need to be handled prudentially. In most European countries protection measures against natural hazards are provided by the public. Specific governmental funds have been set up for the establishment of preventive systems as well as for damage compensation payments after the occurrence of catastrophic events. Though, additional capital is urgently needed in order to facilitate the realisation of all necessary projects in this field and to provide for maximal safety. One potential solution for such financial deficiencies can be found in Public Private Partnerships (PPP). PPPs have been implemented as attractive concepts for the funding of diverse projects in the fields of e.g. road construction, municipal, health and social services. In principle, they could also provide alternative funding solutions for the establishment of crucial protective infrastructure in respect of natural hazards, adding private financial means to the currently available public funds. Thereby, the entire capacities for catastrophe funding could be enhanced. Beside PPPs, also alternative funding mechanisms such as the emission of catastrophe bonds, contingent credit lines or leasing arrangements may enhance available capacities for the financing of protection measures. This contribution discusses innovative solutions for the funding of

  12. The Impact Hazard in the Context of Other Natural Hazards and Predictive Science (United States)

    Chapman, C. R.


    The hazard due to impact of asteroids and comets has been recognized as analogous, in some ways, to other infrequent but consequential natural hazards (e.g. floods and earthquakes). Yet, until recently, astronomers and space agencies have felt no need to do what their colleagues and analogous agencies must do in order the assess, quantify, and communicate predictions to those with a practical interest in the predictions (e.g. public officials who must assess the threats, prepare for mitigation, etc.). Recent heightened public interest in the impact hazard, combined with increasing numbers of "near misses" (certain to increase as Spaceguard is implemented) requires that astronomers accept the responsibility to place their predictions and assessments in terms that may be appropriately considered. I will report on preliminary results of a multi-year GSA/NCAR study of "Prediction in the Earth Sciences: Use and Misuse in Policy Making" in which I have represented the impact hazard, while others have treated earthquakes, floods, weather, global climate change, nuclear waste disposal, acid rain, etc. The impact hazard presents an end-member example of a natural hazard, helping those dealing with more prosaic issues to learn from an extreme. On the other hand, I bring to the astronomical community some lessons long adopted in other cases: the need to understand the policy purposes of impact predictions, the need to assess potential societal impacts, the requirements to very carefully assess prediction uncertainties, considerations of potential public uses of the predictions, awareness of ethical considerations (e.g. conflicts of interest) that affect predictions and acceptance of predictions, awareness of appropriate means for publicly communicating predictions, and considerations of the international context (especially for a hazard that knows no national boundaries).

  13. Increasing resiliency to natural hazards - A strategic plan for the Multi-Hazards Demonstration Project in Southern California (United States)

    Jones, Lucy; Bernknopf, Richard; Cannon, Susan; Cox, Dale A.; Gaydos, Len; Keeley, Jon; Kohler, Monica; Lee, Homa; Ponti, Daniel; Ross, Stephanie L.; Schwarzbach, Steven; Shulters, Michael; Ward, A. Wesley; Wein, Anne


    The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) is initiating a new project designed to improve resiliency to natural hazards in southern California through the application of science to community decision making and emergency response. The Multi-Hazards Demonstration Project will assist the region’s communities to reduce their risk from natural hazards by directing new and existing research towards the community’s needs, improving monitoring technology, producing innovative products, and improving dissemination of the results. The natural hazards to be investigated in this project include coastal erosion, earthquakes, floods, landslides, tsunamis, and wildfires.Americans are more at risk from natural hazards now than at any other time in our Nation’s history. Southern California, in particular, has one of the Nation’s highest potentials for extreme catastrophic losses due to natural hazards, with estimates of expected losses exceeding $3 billion per year. These losses can only be reduced through the decisions of the southern California community itself. To be effective, these decisions must be guided by the best information about hazards, risk, and the cost-effectiveness of mitigation technologies. The USGS will work with collaborators to set the direction of the research and to create multi-hazard risk frameworks where communities can apply the results of scientific research to their decision-making processes. Partners include state, county, city, and public-lands government agencies, public and private utilities, companies with a significant impact and presence in southern California, academic researchers, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and local emergency response agencies.Prior to the writing of this strategic plan document, three strategic planning workshops were held in February and March 2006 at the USGS office in Pasadena to explore potential relationships. The goal of these planning

  14. Procedure for Prioritization of Natural Phenomena Hazards Evaluations for Existing DOE Facilities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Conrads, T.J., Westinghouse Hanford


    This document describes the procedure to be used for the prioritization for natural phenomena hazards evaluations of existing DOE facilities in conformance with DOE Order 5480.28, `Natural Phenomena Hazards Mitigation.`

  15. Technical basis document for natural event hazards

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    CARSON, D.M.


    This technical basis document was developed to support the Tank Farms Documented Safety Analysis (DSA), and describes the risk binning process and the technical basis for assigning risk bins for natural event hazards (NEH)-initiated representative accident and associated represented hazardous conditions. The purpose of the risk binning process is to determine the need for safety-significant structures, systems, and components (SSC) and technical safety requirement (TSR)-level controls for a given representative accident or represented hazardous conditions based on an evaluation of the frequency and consequence. Note that the risk binning process is not applied to facility workers, because all facility worker hazardous conditions are considered for safety-significant SSCs and/or TSR-level controls. Determination of the need for safety-class SSCs was performed in accordance with DOE-STD-3009-94, ''Preparation Guide for US Department of Energy Nonreactor Nuclear Facility Documented Safety Analyses'', as described in this report

  16. Natural hazard management and sustainable development: a questionable link

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lauren Andres


    Full Text Available This article examines the nature of the possible link between natural hazards and sustainable development through a study of the area to the south of Grenoble in the French Alps, a zone subject to two major natural hazards: the extensive landslide known as the "Séchilienne Ruins" and flooding from the Romanche and Drac rivers. More specifically, the study analyzes the assumed transition from the management of natural hazards to the sustainable management of an area subject to natural hazards and is divided into three stages. Thus the link between natural hazards and sustainability is considered as: 1 an association that is entirely relative, 2 one that is logical but limited in the field, 3 one that is above all indirect. The interactions identified between risk and sustainability, in legislative as well as ideal and operational terms, are found to be complex and not necessarily explicit. They depend in particular on the juxtaposition of multiple territorial scales or spatial boundaries (national to local that bring into conflict the different strategies of the actors involved – from decision-makers to technical specialists.Cet article questionne la nature du lien envisageable entre risque naturel et développement durable à travers l’étude du territoire du sud grenoblois, soumis notamment à deux aléas naturels majeurs : le mouvement de terrain de grande ampleur dit des « Ruines de Séchilienne » et les probables crues de la Romanche et du Drac. Trois étapes structurent cette réflexion questionnant la transition supposée entre une gestion des risques naturels et une gestion durable des territoires soumis aux risques naturels : une association toute relative, un lien logique mais limité sur le terrain, une relation surtout indirecte. Les interactions identifiées, en termes législatifs mais aussi idéels et opérationnels, entre risque et durabilité se révèlent ainsi complexes et ne sont pas forcément explicites ; elles d

  17. Integrated Risk Assessment to Natural Hazards in Motozintla, Chiapas, Mexico (United States)

    Novelo-Casanova, D. A.


    An integrated risk assessment includes the analysis of all components of individual constituents of risk such as baseline study, hazard identification and categorization, hazard exposure, and vulnerability. Vulnerability refers to the inability of people, organizations, and societies to withstand adverse impacts from multiple stressors to which they are exposed. These impacts are due to characteristics inherent in social interactions, institutions, and systems of cultural values. Thus, social vulnerability is a pre-existing condition that affects a society's ability to prepare for and recover from a disruptive event. Risk is the probability of a loss, and this loss depends on three elements: hazard, exposure, and vulnerability. Thus, risk is the estimated impact that a hazard event would have on people, services, facilities, structures and assets in a community. In this work we assess the risk to natural hazards in the community of Motozintla located in southern Mexico in the state of Chiapas (15.37N, 92.25W) with a population of about 20 000 habitants. Due to its geographical and geological location, this community is continuously exposed to many different natural hazards (earthquakes, landslides, volcanic eruptions, and floods). To determine the level of exposure of the community to natural hazards, we developed integrated studies and analysis of seismic microzonation, landslide and flood susceptibility as well as volcanic impact using standard methodologies. Social vulnerability was quantified from data obtained from local families interviews. Five variables were considered: household structure quality and design, availability of basic public services, family economic conditions, existing family plans for disaster preparedness, and risk perception.The number of families surveyed was determined considering a sample statistically significant. The families that were interviewed were selected using the simple random sampling technique with replacement. With these

  18. Review of Natural Phenomena Hazard (NPH) Assessments for the DOE Hanford Site

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Snow, Robert L.; Ross, Steven B.


    The purpose of this review is to assess the need for updating Natural Phenomena Hazard (NPH) assessments for the DOE's Hanford Site, as required by DOE Order 420.1B Chapter IV, Natural Phenomena Hazards Mitigation, based on significant changes in state-of-the-art NPH assessment methodology or site-specific information. This review is an update and expansion to the September 2010 review of PNNL-19751, Review of Natural Phenomena Hazard (NPH) Assessments for the Hanford 200 Areas (Non-Seismic).

  19. Natural hazard risk perception of Italian population: case studies along national territory. (United States)

    Gravina, Teresita; Tupputi Schinosa, Francesca De Luca; Zuddas, Isabella; Preto, Mattia; Marengo, Angelo; Esposito, Alessandro; Figliozzi, Emanuele; Rapinatore, Matteo


    Risk perception is judgment that people make about the characteristics and severity of risks, in last few years risk perception studies focused on provide cognitive elements to communication experts responsible in order to design citizenship information and awareness appropriate strategies. Several authors in order to determine natural hazards risk (Seismic, landslides, cyclones, flood, Volcanic) perception used questionnaires as tool for providing reliable quantitative data and permitting comparison the results with those of similar surveys. In Italy, risk perception studies based on surveys, were also carried out in order to investigate on national importance Natural risk, in particular on Somma-Vesuvio and Phlegrean Fields volcanic Risks, but lacked risk perception studies on local situation distributed on whole national territory. National importance natural hazard were frequently reported by national mass media and there were debate about emergencies civil protection plans, otherwise could be difficult to obtain information on bonded and regional nature natural hazard which were diffuses along National territory. In fact, Italian peninsula was a younger geological area subjected to endogenous phenomena (volcanoes, earthquake) and exogenous phenomena which determine land evolution and natural hazard (landslide, coastal erosion, hydrogeological instability, sinkhole) for population. For this reason we decided to investigate on natural risks perception in different Italian place were natural hazard were taken place but not reported from mass media, as were only local relevant or historical event. We carried out surveys in different Italian place interested by different types of natural Hazard (landslide, coastal erosion, hydrogeological instability, sinkhole, volcanic phenomena and earthquake) and compared results, in order to understand population perception level, awareness and civil protection exercises preparation. Our findings support that risks

  20. Modeling of Marine Natural Hazards in the Lesser Antilles (United States)

    Zahibo, Narcisse; Nikolkina, Irina; Pelinovsky, Efim


    The Caribbean Sea countries are often affected by various marine natural hazards: hurricanes and cyclones, tsunamis and flooding. The historical data of marine natural hazards for the Lesser Antilles and specially, for Guadeloupe are presented briefly. Numerical simulation of several historical tsunamis in the Caribbean Sea (1755 Lisbon trans-Atlantic tsunami, 1867 Virgin Island earthquake tsunami, 2003 Montserrat volcano tsunami) are performed within the framework of the nonlinear-shallow theory. Numerical results demonstrate the importance of the real bathymetry variability with respect to the direction of propagation of tsunami wave and its characteristics. The prognostic tsunami wave height distribution along the Caribbean Coast is computed using various forms of seismic and hydrodynamics sources. These results are used to estimate the far-field potential for tsunami hazards at coastal locations in the Caribbean Sea. The nonlinear shallow-water theory is also applied to model storm surges induced by tropical cyclones, in particular, cyclones "Lilli" in 2002 and "Dean" in 2007. Obtained results are compared with observed data. The numerical models have been tested against known analytical solutions of the nonlinear shallow-water wave equations. Obtained results are described in details in [1-7]. References [1] N. Zahibo and E. Pelinovsky, Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences, 1, 221 (2001). [2] N. Zahibo, E. Pelinovsky, A. Yalciner, A. Kurkin, A. Koselkov and A. Zaitsev, Oceanologica Acta, 26, 609 (2003). [3] N. Zahibo, E. Pelinovsky, A. Kurkin and A. Kozelkov, Science Tsunami Hazards. 21, 202 (2003). [4] E. Pelinovsky, N. Zahibo, P. Dunkley, M. Edmonds, R. Herd, T. Talipova, A. Kozelkov and I. Nikolkina, Science of Tsunami Hazards, 22, 44 (2004). [5] N. Zahibo, E. Pelinovsky, E. Okal, A. Yalciner, C. Kharif, T. Talipova and A. Kozelkov, Science of Tsunami Hazards, 23, 25 (2005). [6] N. Zahibo, E. Pelinovsky, T. Talipova, A. Rabinovich, A. Kurkin and I

  1. WHC natural phenomena hazards mitigation implementation plan

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Conrads, T.J.


    Natural phenomena hazards (NPH) are unexpected acts of nature which pose a threat or danger to workers, the public or to the environment. Earthquakes, extreme winds (hurricane and tornado),snow, flooding, volcanic ashfall, and lightning strike are examples of NPH at Hanford. It is the policy of U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to design, construct and operate DOE facilitiesso that workers, the public and the environment are protected from NPH and other hazards. During 1993 DOE, Richland Operations Office (RL) transmitted DOE Order 5480.28, ``Natural Phenomena Hazards Mitigation,`` to Westinghouse Hanford COmpany (WHC) for compliance. The Order includes rigorous new NPH criteria for the design of new DOE facilities as well as for the evaluation and upgrade of existing DOE facilities. In 1995 DOE issued Order 420.1, ``Facility Safety`` which contains the same NPH requirements and invokes the same applicable standards as Order 5480.28. It will supersede Order 5480.28 when an in-force date for Order 420.1 is established through contract revision. Activities will be planned and accomplished in four phases: Mobilization; Prioritization; Evaluation; and Upgrade. The basis for the graded approach is the designation of facilities/structures into one of five performance categories based upon safety function, mission and cost. This Implementation Plan develops the program for the Prioritization Phase, as well as an overall strategy for the implemention of DOE Order 5480.2B.


    Tashyrev, O B; Govorukha, V M


    The widespread of Fe(III)-reducing microorganisms in natural ecosystems of Ecuador of La Favorita, Tungurahua volcano and Papallacta areas was experimentally proved. High efficiency of microbial precipitation of soluble iron compounds was also demonstrated. Obtained results indicate the potential ability of Fe(III)-reducing microorganisms to influence the formation of carbon and iron vector fluxes in ecosystems, as well as development of effective biotechnologies of water purification from iron compounds.

  3. Language of the Earth: Exploring Natural Hazards through a Literary Anthology (United States)

    Malamud, B. D.; Rhodes, F. H. T.


    This paper explores natural hazards teaching and communications through the use of a literary anthology of writings about the earth aimed at non-experts. Teaching natural hazards in high-school and university introductory Earth Science and Geography courses revolves mostly around lectures, examinations, and laboratory demonstrations/activities. Often the results of such a course are that a student 'memorizes' the answers, and is penalized when they miss a given fact [e.g., "You lost one point because you were off by 50 km/hr on the wind speed of an F5 tornado."] Although facts and general methodologies are certainly important when teaching natural hazards, it is a strong motivation to a student's assimilation of, and enthusiasm for, this knowledge, if supplemented by writings about the Earth. In this paper, we discuss a literary anthology which we developed [Language of the Earth, Rhodes, Stone, Malamud, Wiley-Blackwell, 2008] which includes many descriptions about natural hazards. Using first- and second-hand accounts of landslides, earthquakes, tsunamis, floods and volcanic eruptions, through the writings of McPhee, Gaskill, Voltaire, Austin, Cloos, and many others, hazards become 'alive', and more than 'just' a compilation of facts and processes. Using short excerpts such as these, or other similar anthologies, of remarkably written accounts and discussions about natural hazards results in 'dry' facts becoming more than just facts. These often highly personal viewpoints of our catostrophic world, provide a useful supplement to a student's understanding of the turbulent world in which we live.

  4. Protection of the human race against natural hazards (asteroids, comets, volcanoes, earthquakes) (United States)

    Smith, Joseph V.


    Although we justifiably worry about the danger of nuclear war to civilization, and perhaps even to survival of the human race, we tend to consider natural hazards (e.g., comets, asteroids, volcanoes, earthquakes) as unavoidable acts of God. In any human lifetime, a truly catastrophic natural event is very unlikely, but ultimately one will occur. For the first time in human history we have sufficient technical skills to begin protection of Earth from some natural hazards. We could decide collectively throughout the world to reassign resources: in particular, reduction of nuclear and conventional weapons to a less dangerous level would allow concomitant increase of international programs for detection and prevention of natural hazards. Worldwide cooperation to mitigate natural hazards might help psychologically to lead us away from the divisive bickering that triggers wars. Future generations could hail us as pioneers of peace and safety rather than curse us as agents of death and destruction.

  5. Assessing the risk posed by natural hazards to infrastructures (United States)

    Eidsvig, Unni Marie K.; Kristensen, Krister; Vidar Vangelsten, Bjørn


    This paper proposes a model for assessing the risk posed by natural hazards to infrastructures, with a focus on the indirect losses and loss of stability for the population relying on the infrastructure. The model prescribes a three-level analysis with increasing level of detail, moving from qualitative to quantitative analysis. The focus is on a methodology for semi-quantitative analyses to be performed at the second level. The purpose of this type of analysis is to perform a screening of the scenarios of natural hazards threatening the infrastructures, identifying the most critical scenarios and investigating the need for further analyses (third level). The proposed semi-quantitative methodology considers the frequency of the natural hazard, different aspects of vulnerability, including the physical vulnerability of the infrastructure itself, and the societal dependency on the infrastructure. An indicator-based approach is applied, ranking the indicators on a relative scale according to pre-defined ranking criteria. The proposed indicators, which characterise conditions that influence the probability of an infrastructure malfunctioning caused by a natural event, are defined as (1) robustness and buffer capacity, (2) level of protection, (3) quality/level of maintenance and renewal, (4) adaptability and quality of operational procedures and (5) transparency/complexity/degree of coupling. Further indicators describe conditions influencing the socio-economic consequences of the infrastructure malfunctioning, such as (1) redundancy and/or substitution, (2) cascading effects and dependencies, (3) preparedness and (4) early warning, emergency response and measures. The aggregated risk estimate is a combination of the semi-quantitative vulnerability indicators, as well as quantitative estimates of the frequency of the natural hazard, the potential duration of the infrastructure malfunctioning (e.g. depending on the required restoration effort) and the number of users of

  6. DOE natural phenomenal hazards design and evaluation criteria

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Murray, R.C.; Nelson, T.A.; Short, S.A.; Kennedy, R.P.; Chander, H.; Hill, J.R.; Kimball, J.K.


    It is the policy of the Department of Energy (DOE) to design, construct, and operate DOE facilities so that workers, the general public, and the environment are protected from the impacts of natural phenomena hazards (NPH). Furthermore, DOE has established explicit goals of acceptable risk for NPH performance. As a result, natural phenomena hazard (earthquake, extreme wind, and flood) design and evaluation criteria for DOE facilities have been developed based on target probabilistic performance goals. These criteria include selection of design/evaluation NPH input from probabilistic hazard curves combined with commonly practiced deterministic response evaluation methods and acceptance criteria with controlled levels of conservatism. For earthquake considerations, conservatism is intentionally introduced in specification of material strengths and capacities, in the allowance of limited inelastic behavior, and by a seismic scale factor. Criteria have been developed following a graded approach for several performance goals ranging from that appropriate for normal-use facilities to that appropriate for facilities involving hazardous or critical operations. Performance goals are comprised of qualitative expressions of acceptable behavior and of target quantitative probabilities that acceptable limits of behavior are maintained. The criteria are simple procedures but have a rigorous basis. This paper addresses DOE seismic design and evaluation criteria

  7. Exploration of resilience assessments for natural hazards (United States)

    Lo Jacomo, Anna; Han, Dawei; Champneys, Alan


    The occurrence of extreme events due to natural hazards is difficult to predict. Extreme events are stochastic in nature, there is a lack of long term data on their occurrence, and there are still gaps in our understanding of their physical processes. This difficulty in prediction will be exacerbated by climate change and human activities. Yet traditional risk assessments measure risk as the probability of occurrence of a hazard, multiplied by the consequences of the hazard occurring, which ignores the recovery process. In light of the increasing concerns on disaster risks and the related system recovery, resilience assessments are being used as an approach which complements and builds on traditional risk assessments and management. In mechanical terms, resilience refers to the amount of energy per unit volume that a material can absorb while maintaining its ability to return to its original shape. Resilience was first applied in the fields of psychology and ecology, and more recently has been used in areas such as social sciences, economics, and engineering. A common metaphor for understanding resilience is the stability landscape. The landscape consists of a surface of interconnected basins, where each basin represents different states of a system, which is a point on the stability landscape. The resilience of the system is its capacity and tendency to remain within a particular basin. This depends on the topology of the landscape, on the system's current position, and on its reaction to different shocks and stresses. In practical terms, resilience assessments have been conducted for various purposes in different sectors. These assessments vary in their required inputs, the methodologies applied, and the output they produce. Some measures used for resilience assessments are hazard independent. These focus on the intrinsic capabilities of a system, for example the insurance coverage of a community, or the buffer capacity of a water storage reservoir. Other

  8. Designing Effective Natural Hazards Preparedness Communications: Factors that Influence Perceptions and Action (United States)

    Wong-Parodi, G.; Fischhoff, B.


    Even though most people believe that natural hazards preparation is important for mitigating damage to their homes and basic survival in the aftermath of a disaster, few actually disaster-proof their homes, create plans, or obtain supplies recommended by agencies such as the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Several observational studies suggest that socio-demographic characteristics such as income and psychological characteristics such as self-efficacy affect whether or not an individual takes action to prepare for a natural hazard. These studies, however, only suggest that these characteristics may play a role. There has been little research that systematically investigates how these characteristics play a role in people's perceptions of recommended preparatory activities and decisions to perform them. Therefore, in Study 1, we explore people's perceptions of natural hazards preparedness measures on four dimensions: time, cost, helpfulness, and sense of preparedness. We further investigate if these responses vary by the socio-demographic and psychological characteristics of self-efficacy, knowledge, and income level. In Study 2, we experimentally test whether people's sense of self-efficacy, as it relates to natural hazards, can be manipulated through exposure to an "easy-and-effective" versus a "hard-and-effective" set of preparation measures. Our findings have implications for the design of natural hazards communication materials for the general public.

  9. Luminescence dating of some historical/pre-historical natural hazards of India

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gartia, R.K.


    The Indian sub-continent is characterized by host of natural hazards like earthquake, tsunami, cyclones, floods, landslides/mudflows. It is necessary to build-up a database of historical/pre-historical natural hazards for planning scenarios for emergency response to various them. In short, there is a vast scope of providing chronology to hazardous events by using known techniques of dating including luminescence dating which has an excellent window span down from few hundred years to one hundred thousand years. In this work we report the dates of some historical/pre-historical natural hazards of India. In particular we focus on three kinds of natural hazards namely, earthquakes, tsunami, and mudflows. For example of earthquake we cover a historical earthquake of Manipur that created two massive fissures at Kumbi, 25 km from the state capital, Imphal. For pre-historical ones, we cover Assam-Shillong area known for its highest levels of seismicity in India. We demonstrate the evidence of a paleo-tsunami that devastated Mahabalipuram near Chennai. Incidentally, Mahabalipuram was badly affected by the great tsunami of 26th Dec 2004. Finally, luminescence dating technique has been applied to some historical/pre-historical mudflows of Manipur. A recent mudflow on 10th July 2004 damaged more than 90 houses, block National Highway-39, the life-line of Manipur for more than a fort-night. (author)

  10. Physics-Based Simulations of Natural Hazards (United States)

    Schultz, Kasey William

    Earthquakes and tsunamis are some of the most damaging natural disasters that we face. Just two recent events, the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami and the 2011 Haiti earthquake, claimed more than 400,000 lives. Despite their catastrophic impacts on society, our ability to predict these natural disasters is still very limited. The main challenge in studying the earthquake cycle is the non-linear and multi-scale properties of fault networks. Earthquakes are governed by physics across many orders of magnitude of spatial and temporal scales; from the scale of tectonic plates and their evolution over millions of years, down to the scale of rock fracturing over milliseconds to minutes at the sub-centimeter scale during an earthquake. Despite these challenges, there are useful patterns in earthquake occurrence. One such pattern, the frequency-magnitude relation, relates the number of large earthquakes to small earthquakes and forms the basis for assessing earthquake hazard. However the utility of these relations is proportional to the length of our earthquake records, and typical records span at most a few hundred years. Utilizing physics based interactions and techniques from statistical physics, earthquake simulations provide rich earthquake catalogs allowing us to measure otherwise unobservable statistics. In this dissertation I will discuss five applications of physics-based simulations of natural hazards, utilizing an earthquake simulator called Virtual Quake. The first is an overview of computing earthquake probabilities from simulations, focusing on the California fault system. The second uses simulations to help guide satellite-based earthquake monitoring methods. The third presents a new friction model for Virtual Quake and describes how we tune simulations to match reality. The fourth describes the process of turning Virtual Quake into an open source research tool. This section then focuses on a resulting collaboration using Virtual Quake for a detailed

  11. Design and evaluation guidelines for Department of Energy facilities subjected to natural phenomena hazards

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kennedy, R.P.; Short, S.A.; McDonald, J.R.; McCann, M.W. Jr.; Murray, R.C.; Hill, J.R.


    The Department of Energy (DOE) and the DOE Natural Phenomena Hazards Panel have developed uniform design and evaluation guidelines for protection against natural phenomena hazards at DOE sites throughout the United States. The goal of the guidelines is to assure that DOE facilities can withstand the effects of natural phenomena such as earthquakes, extreme winds, tornadoes, and flooding. The guidelines apply to both new facilities (design) and existing facilities (evaluation, modification, and upgrading). The intended audience is primarily the civil/structural or mechanical engineers conducting the design or evaluation of DOE facilities. The likelihood of occurrence of natural phenomena hazards at each DOE site has been evaluated by the DOE Natural Phenomena Hazard Program. Probabilistic hazard models are available for earthquake, extreme wind/tornado, and flood. Alternatively, site organizations are encouraged to develop site-specific hazard models utilizing the most recent information and techniques available. In this document, performance goals and natural hazard levels are expressed in probabilistic terms, and design and evaluation procedures are presented in deterministic terms. Design/evaluation procedures conform closely to common standard practices so that the procedures will be easily understood by most engineers. Performance goals are expressed in terms of structure or equipment damage to the extent that: (1) the facility cannot function; (2) the facility would need to be replaced; or (3) personnel are endangered. 82 refs., 12 figs., 18 tabs

  12. Design and evaluation guidelines for Department of Energy facilities subjected to natural phenomena hazards

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kennedy, R.P. (Structural Mechanics Consulting, Inc., Yorba Linda, CA (USA)); Short, S.A. (ABB Impell Corp., Mission Viejo, CA (USA)); McDonald, J.R. (Texas Tech Univ., Lubbock, TX (USA)); McCann, M.W. Jr. (Benjamin (J.R.) and Associates, Inc., Mountain View, CA (USA)); Murray, R.C. (Lawrence Livermore National Lab., CA (USA)); Hill, J.R. (USDOE Assistant Secretary for Environment, Safety, and He


    The Department of Energy (DOE) and the DOE Natural Phenomena Hazards Panel have developed uniform design and evaluation guidelines for protection against natural phenomena hazards at DOE sites throughout the United States. The goal of the guidelines is to assure that DOE facilities can withstand the effects of natural phenomena such as earthquakes, extreme winds, tornadoes, and flooding. The guidelines apply to both new facilities (design) and existing facilities (evaluation, modification, and upgrading). The intended audience is primarily the civil/structural or mechanical engineers conducting the design or evaluation of DOE facilities. The likelihood of occurrence of natural phenomena hazards at each DOE site has been evaluated by the DOE Natural Phenomena Hazard Program. Probabilistic hazard models are available for earthquake, extreme wind/tornado, and flood. Alternatively, site organizations are encouraged to develop site-specific hazard models utilizing the most recent information and techniques available. In this document, performance goals and natural hazard levels are expressed in probabilistic terms, and design and evaluation procedures are presented in deterministic terms. Design/evaluation procedures conform closely to common standard practices so that the procedures will be easily understood by most engineers. Performance goals are expressed in terms of structure or equipment damage to the extent that: (1) the facility cannot function; (2) the facility would need to be replaced; or (3) personnel are endangered. 82 refs., 12 figs., 18 tabs.

  13. Enhancing international earth science competence in natural hazards through 'geoNatHaz (United States)

    Giardino, Marco; Clague, John J.


    "geoNatHaz" is a Transatlantic Exchange Partnership project (TEP 2009-2012) within the framework of the EU-Canada programme for co-operation in higher education, training, and youth. The project is structured to improve knowledge and skills required to assess and manage natural hazards in mountain regions. It provides student exchanges between European and Canadian universities in order to enhance international competence in natural hazard research. The university consortium is led by Simon Fraser University (Canada) and Università degli studi di Torino (Italy). Partner universities include the University of British Columbia, Queen's University, Università di Bologna, Université de Savoie, and the University of Athens. Université de Lausanne (Switzerland) supports the geoNatHaz advisory board through its bilateral agreements with Canadian partner universities. The geoNatHaz project promotes cross-cultural understanding and internationalization of university natural hazard curricula through common lectures, laboratory exercises, and field activities. Forty graduate students from the seven Canadian and European partner universities will benefit from the project between 2009 and 2012. Some students enrolled in graduate-level earth science and geologic engineering programs spend up to five months at the partner universities, taking courses and participating in research teams under the direction of project scientists. Other students engage in short-term (four-week) exchanges involving training in classic natural hazard case-studies in mountain regions of Canada and Europe. Joint courses are delivered in English, but complementary cultural activities are offered in the languages of the host countries. Supporting organizations offer internships and technical and scientific support. Students benefit from work-study programs with industry partners. Supporting organizations include government departments and agencies (Geological Survey of Canada; CNR-IRPI National

  14. Designsafe-Ci a Cyberinfrastructure for Natural Hazard Simulation and Data (United States)

    Dawson, C.; Rathje, E.; Stanzione, D.; Padgett, J.; Pinelli, J. P.


    DesignSafe is the web-based research platform of the Natural Hazards Engineering Research Infrastructure (NHERI) network that provides the computational tools needed to manage and analyze critical data for natural hazards research, with wind and storm surge related hazards being a primary focus. One of the simulation tools under DesignSafe is the Advanced Circulation (ADCIRC) model, a coastal ocean model used in storm surge analysis. ADCIRC is an unstructured, finite element model with high resolution capabilities for studying storm surge impacts, and has long been used in storm surge hind-casting and forecasting. In this talk, we will demonstrate the use of ADCIRC within the DesignSafe platform and its use for forecasting Hurricane Harvey. We will also demonstrate how to analyze, visualize and archive critical storm surge related data within DesignSafe.

  15. Department of Energy Natural Phenomena Hazards Mitigation program

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Murray, R.C.


    This paper presents a summary of past and present accomplishments of the Natural Phenomena Hazards Program that has been ongoing at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory since 1975. The Natural Phenomena covered includes earthquake; winds, hurricanes, and tornadoes; flooding and precipitation; lightning; and volcanic events. The work is organized into four major areas (1) Policy, requirements, standards, and guidance, (2) Technical support, research and development, (3) Technology transfer, and (4) Oversight

  16. Historical analysis of US pipeline accidents triggered by natural hazards (United States)

    Girgin, Serkan; Krausmann, Elisabeth


    Natural hazards, such as earthquakes, floods, landslides, or lightning, can initiate accidents in oil and gas pipelines with potentially major consequences on the population or the environment due to toxic releases, fires and explosions. Accidents of this type are also referred to as Natech events. Many major accidents highlight the risk associated with natural-hazard impact on pipelines transporting dangerous substances. For instance, in the USA in 1994, flooding of the San Jacinto River caused the rupture of 8 and the undermining of 29 pipelines by the floodwaters. About 5.5 million litres of petroleum and related products were spilled into the river and ignited. As a results, 547 people were injured and significant environmental damage occurred. Post-incident analysis is a valuable tool for better understanding the causes, dynamics and impacts of pipeline Natech accidents in support of future accident prevention and mitigation. Therefore, data on onshore hazardous-liquid pipeline accidents collected by the US Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) was analysed. For this purpose, a database-driven incident data analysis system was developed to aid the rapid review and categorization of PHMSA incident reports. Using an automated data-mining process followed by a peer review of the incident records and supported by natural hazard databases and external information sources, the pipeline Natechs were identified. As a by-product of the data-collection process, the database now includes over 800,000 incidents from all causes in industrial and transportation activities, which are automatically classified in the same way as the PHMSA record. This presentation describes the data collection and reviewing steps conducted during the study, provides information on the developed database and data analysis tools, and reports the findings of a statistical analysis of the identified hazardous liquid pipeline incidents in terms of accident dynamics and

  17. Global early warning systems for natural hazards: systematic and people-centred. (United States)

    Basher, Reid


    To be effective, early warning systems for natural hazards need to have not only a sound scientific and technical basis, but also a strong focus on the people exposed to risk, and with a systems approach that incorporates all of the relevant factors in that risk, whether arising from the natural hazards or social vulnerabilities, and from short-term or long-term processes. Disasters are increasing in number and severity and international institutional frameworks to reduce disasters are being strengthened under United Nations oversight. Since the Indian Ocean tsunami of 26 December 2004, there has been a surge of interest in developing early warning systems to cater to the needs of all countries and all hazards.

  18. Hunza Landslide and Monsoon Flooding in Pakistan Call for International Attention to Transboundary Natural Hazards (United States)

    Kargel, J. S.; Fink, W.; Furfaro, R.; Leonard, G. J.; Patterson, M.; Glims, Gaphaz


    Two major disasters in Pakistan and innumerable lesser disasters throughout the Himalaya-Karakoram region in 2010 highlight geologic events and extreme weather (perhaps climate change) in affecting the well being of whole nations and commerce and relations between nations. Two chief events in Pakistan include the Jan. 4 rockslide into the Hunza River and the subsequent formation of a natural dam lake (Lake Gojal); and the monsoon precipitation-fed flooding across the Indus Basin. The first event severed Pakistan’s major land link with China. The second event devastated Pakistan’s national land-based transportation infrastructure and agriculture and displaced millions of people. In a country plagued by monsoon-driven floods, the lack of catastrophic breakout of Lake Gojal is welcome. Satellite-based monitoring shows the spillway to be eroding more rapidly (but not alarmingly) under August’s monsoon peak flow. Similar events have occurred before in the region and will occur again. These mega-events in Pakistan should be an alert for all of South Asia, as climate change increases or shifts the hazard environment, encroaching development and urbanization increases the vulnerabilities, and as improved capacity for trans-national commerce breaks down the Himalayan barrier and both promotes new opportunities and possible conflicts. 2010's natural mega-calamities in Pakistan and widespread landsliding and flooding elsewhere in South Asia underscores the subcontinent’s need for a thorough field-, remote sensing-, and modeling-based assessment of the disaster potential related to landslides, glacier surges, extreme monsoon precipitation events, natural glacier and landslide dam lake outbursts, and unseasonal snow melting. The Himalayan-Karakoram region is remarkable for its heterogeneous responses to climate change. For instance, some areas are undergoing rapid glacier recession and stagnation; others are undergoing glacier growth. We take the instance of the

  19. Widespread Natural Occurrence of Hydroxyurea in Animals.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David I Fraser

    Full Text Available Here we report the widespread natural occurrence of a known antibiotic and antineoplastic compound, hydroxyurea in animals from many taxonomic groups. Hydroxyurea occurs in all the organisms we have examined including invertebrates (molluscs and crustaceans, fishes from several major groups, amphibians and mammals. The species with highest concentrations was an elasmobranch (sharks, skates and rays, the little skate Leucoraja erinacea with levels up to 250 μM, high enough to have antiviral, antimicrobial and antineoplastic effects based on in vitro studies. Embryos of L. erinacea showed increasing levels of hydroxyurea with development, indicating the capacity for hydroxyurea synthesis. Certain tissues of other organisms (e.g. skin of the frog (64 μM, intestine of lobster (138 μM gills of the surf clam (100 μM had levels high enough to have antiviral effects based on in vitro studies. Hydroxyurea is widely used clinically in the treatment of certain human cancers, sickle cell anemia, psoriasis, myeloproliferative diseases, and has been investigated as a potential treatment of HIV infection and its presence at high levels in tissues of elasmobranchs and other organisms suggests a novel mechanism for fighting disease that may explain the disease resistance of some groups. In light of the known production of nitric oxide from exogenously applied hydroxyurea, endogenous hydoxyurea may play a hitherto unknown role in nitric oxide dynamics.

  20. Widespread Natural Occurrence of Hydroxyurea in Animals. (United States)

    Fraser, David I; Liu, Kyle T; Reid, Bryan J; Hawkins, Emily; Sevier, Andrew; Pyle, Michelle; Robinson, Jacob W; Ouellette, Pierre H R; Ballantyne, James S


    Here we report the widespread natural occurrence of a known antibiotic and antineoplastic compound, hydroxyurea in animals from many taxonomic groups. Hydroxyurea occurs in all the organisms we have examined including invertebrates (molluscs and crustaceans), fishes from several major groups, amphibians and mammals. The species with highest concentrations was an elasmobranch (sharks, skates and rays), the little skate Leucoraja erinacea with levels up to 250 μM, high enough to have antiviral, antimicrobial and antineoplastic effects based on in vitro studies. Embryos of L. erinacea showed increasing levels of hydroxyurea with development, indicating the capacity for hydroxyurea synthesis. Certain tissues of other organisms (e.g. skin of the frog (64 μM), intestine of lobster (138 μM) gills of the surf clam (100 μM)) had levels high enough to have antiviral effects based on in vitro studies. Hydroxyurea is widely used clinically in the treatment of certain human cancers, sickle cell anemia, psoriasis, myeloproliferative diseases, and has been investigated as a potential treatment of HIV infection and its presence at high levels in tissues of elasmobranchs and other organisms suggests a novel mechanism for fighting disease that may explain the disease resistance of some groups. In light of the known production of nitric oxide from exogenously applied hydroxyurea, endogenous hydoxyurea may play a hitherto unknown role in nitric oxide dynamics.

  1. Natural phenomena hazards design and evaluation criteria for Department of Energy Facilities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)



    The Department of Energy (DOE) has issued an Order 420.1 which establishes policy for its facilities in the event of natural phenomena hazards (NPH) along with associated NPH mitigation requirements. This DOE Standard gives design and evaluation criteria for NPH effects as guidance for implementing the NPH mitigation requirements of DOE Order 420.1 and the associated implementation Guides. These are intended to be consistent design and evaluation criteria for protection against natural phenomena hazards at DOE sites throughout the United States. The goal of these criteria is to assure that DOE facilities can withstand the effects of natural phenomena such as earthquakes, extreme winds, tornadoes, and flooding. These criteria apply to the design of new facilities and the evaluation of existing facilities. They may also be used for modification and upgrading of existing facilities as appropriate. The design and evaluation criteria presented herein control the level of conservatism introduced in the design/evaluation process such that earthquake, wind, and flood hazards are treated on a consistent basis. These criteria also employ a graded approach to ensure that the level of conservatism and rigor in design/evaluation is appropriate for facility characteristics such as importance, hazards to people on and off site, and threat to the environment. For each natural phenomena hazard covered, these criteria consist of the following: Performance Categories and target performance goals as specified in the DOE Order 420.1 NPH Implementation Guide, and DOE-STD-1 021; specified probability levels from which natural phenomena hazard loading on structures, equipment, and systems is developed; and design and evaluation procedures to evaluate response to NPH loads and criteria to assess whether or not computed response is permissible.

  2. Natural hazards in a changing world: a case for ecosystem-based management.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeanne L Nel

    Full Text Available Communities worldwide are increasingly affected by natural hazards such as floods, droughts, wildfires and storm-waves. However, the causes of these increases remain underexplored, often attributed to climate changes or changes in the patterns of human exposure. This paper aims to quantify the effect of climate change, as well as land cover change, on a suite of natural hazards. Changes to four natural hazards (floods, droughts, wildfires and storm-waves were investigated through scenario-based models using land cover and climate change drivers as inputs. Findings showed that human-induced land cover changes are likely to increase natural hazards, in some cases quite substantially. Of the drivers explored, the uncontrolled spread of invasive alien trees was estimated to halve the monthly flows experienced during extremely dry periods, and also to double fire intensities. Changes to plantation forestry management shifted the 1:100 year flood event to a 1:80 year return period in the most extreme scenario. Severe 1:100 year storm-waves were estimated to occur on an annual basis with only modest human-induced coastal hardening, predominantly from removal of coastal foredunes and infrastructure development. This study suggests that through appropriate land use management (e.g. clearing invasive alien trees, re-vegetating clear-felled forests, and restoring coastal foredunes, it would be possible to reduce the impacts of natural hazards to a large degree. It also highlights the value of intact and well-managed landscapes and their role in reducing the probabilities and impacts of extreme climate events.

  3. Natural radioactivity and radiological hazards of building materials in Xianyang, China

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lu Xinwei; Yang Guang; Ren Chunhui


    Common building materials collected from Xianyang, China were analyzed for the natural radioactivity of 226 Ra, 232 Th and 40 K using γ-ray spectroscopy. The average activity concentration of 226 Ra, 232 Th and 40 K in the studied building materials ranges from 13.4 to 69.9, 13.1–99.1 and 124.7–915.1 Bq kg −1 , respectively. The measured activity concentrations for these radionuclides were compared with the reported data of other countries and with the worldwide average activity of soil. To assess the radiation hazard of the natural radioactivity in all samples to the people, the radium equivalent activity, external hazard index, internal hazard index, indoor absorbed dose rate and total annual effective dose were estimated. The radium equivalent activities of the studied samples are below the internationally accepted values. The external hazard index and internal hazard index of all analyzed building materials are less than unity. The mean values of indoor absorbed dose rate for all building materials except for lime are higher than the world population-weighted average of 84 nGy h −1 and the total annual effective dose values of building materials are lower than 1 mSv y −1 except for some cyan brick samples. The study shows the measured building materials do not pose significant source of radiation hazard and are safe for use in the construction of dwellings. - Highlights: ► Natural radioactivity in building materials was determined by gamma ray spectrometry. ► The radiological hazard of studied building materials is within the recommended safety limit. ► Most of the studied building materials do not pose significant radiation risk to residents.

  4. Disaster Risks Reduction for Extreme Natural Hazards (United States)

    Plag, H.; Jules-Plag, S.


    Mega disasters associated with extreme natural hazards have the potential to escalate the global sustainability crisis and put us close to the boundaries of the safe operating space for humanity. Floods and droughts are major threats that potentially could reach planetary extent, particularly through secondary economic and social impacts. Earthquakes and tsunamis frequently cause disasters that eventually could exceed the immediate coping capacity of the global economy, particularly since we have built mega cities in hazardous areas that are now ready to be harvested by natural hazards. Unfortunately, the more we learn to cope with the relatively frequent hazards (50 to 100 years events), the less we are worried about the low-probability, high-impact events (a few hundred and more years events). As a consequence, threats from the 500 years flood, drought, volcano eruption are not appropriately accounted for in disaster risk reduction (DRR) discussions. Extreme geohazards have occurred regularly throughout the past, but mostly did not cause major disasters because exposure of human assets to hazards was much lower in the past. The most extreme events that occurred during the last 2,000 years would today cause unparalleled damage on a global scale and could worsen the sustainability crisis. Simulation of these extreme hazards under present conditions can help to assess the disaster risk. Recent extreme earthquakes have illustrated the destruction they can inflict, both directly and indirectly through tsunamis. Large volcano eruptions have the potential to impact climate, anthropogenic infrastructure and resource supplies on global scale. During the last 2,000 years several large volcano eruptions occurred, which under today's conditions are associated with extreme disaster risk. The comparison of earthquakes and volcano eruptions indicates that large volcano eruptions are the low-probability geohazards with potentially the highest impact on our civilization

  5. Influence of land-use dynamics on natural hazard risk (United States)

    Piazza, Giacomo; Thaler, Thomas; Fuchs, Sven


    In the recent past the magnitude and frequency of natural hazard events has increased notably worldwide, along with global GDP. A higher number of elements are exposed to natural events, therefore the risk is higher. Both estimated losses and understanding about natural hazards have increased during the past decades, which is contradictory as we may logically think. Risk is increasing, due to climate change and societal change: more severe hazards are happening due to changing climatic patterns and conditions, while society is concentrating assets and people in punctual places leading to a higher exposure. Increasing surface of settled area and the concentration of highly valuable assets (e.g. technology) in exposed areas lead to higher probability of losses. Human use of land resources, namely landuse, is the product of human needs and biophysical characteristics of the land. Landuse involves arrangements, activities and inputs people undertake in a certain land cover type to produce, change or maintain it. These changes are due to many reasons, or driving factors: socio-economical, environmental, accessibility to land, land-tenure, etc. The change of those factors may cause many effects and impacts, at various levels and at different time spans. The relation between driving factors and impacts is not straight. It is although a complex interrelation that turns around two central questions: (1) what drives landuse changes and why and (2) what are the impacts on the environment and on the human society of these changes, regarding to natural hazards. The aim of this paper is to analyse the spatio-temporal environmental changes referring to exposure as well as to test the possibilities and limitations of the land use change model Dyna-CLUEs in a mountain region taking parts of the Republic of Austria as an example, and simulating the future landuse dynamics until 2030. We selected an area composed by eighteen municipalities in the Ill-Walgau in the Austrian federal

  6. Recent Progress in Understanding Natural-Hazards-Generated TEC Perturbations: Measurements and Modeling Results (United States)

    Komjathy, A.; Yang, Y. M.; Meng, X.; Verkhoglyadova, O. P.; Mannucci, A. J.; Langley, R. B.


    Natural hazards, including earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, and tsunamis, have been significant threats to humans throughout recorded history. The Global Positioning System satellites have become primary sensors to measure signatures associated with such natural hazards. These signatures typically include GPS-derived seismic deformation measurements, co-seismic vertical displacements, and real-time GPS-derived ocean buoy positioning estimates. Another way to use GPS observables is to compute the ionospheric total electron content (TEC) to measure and monitor post-seismic ionospheric disturbances caused by earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, and tsunamis. Research at the University of New Brunswick (UNB) laid the foundations to model the three-dimensional ionosphere at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory by ingesting ground- and space-based GPS measurements into the state-of-the-art Global Assimilative Ionosphere Modeling (GAIM) software. As an outcome of the UNB and NASA research, new and innovative GPS applications have been invented including the use of ionospheric measurements to detect tiny fluctuations in the GPS signals between the spacecraft and GPS receivers caused by natural hazards occurring on or near the Earth's surface.We will show examples for early detection of natural hazards generated ionospheric signatures using ground-based and space-borne GPS receivers. We will also discuss recent results from the U.S. Real-time Earthquake Analysis for Disaster Mitigation Network (READI) exercises utilizing our algorithms. By studying the propagation properties of ionospheric perturbations generated by natural hazards along with applying sophisticated first-principles physics-based modeling, we are on track to develop new technologies that can potentially save human lives and minimize property damage. It is also expected that ionospheric monitoring of TEC perturbations might become an integral part of existing natural hazards warning systems.

  7. Survey of naturally occurring hazardous materials in deep geologic formations: a perspective on the relative hazard of deep burial of nuclear wastes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tonnessen, K.A.; Cohen, J.J.


    Hazards associated with deep burial of solidified nuclear waste are considered with reference to toxic elements in naturally occurring ore deposits. This problem is put into perspective by relating the hazard of a radioactive waste repository to that of naturally occurring geologic formations. The basis for comparison derives from a consideration of safe drinking water levels. Calculations for relative toxicity of FBR waste and light water reactor (LWR) waste in an underground repository are compared with the relative toxicity indices obtained for average concentration ore deposits. Results indicate that, over time, nuclear waste toxicity decreases to levels below those of naturally occurring hazardous materials

  8. An (even) broader perspective: Combining environmental processes and natural hazards education in a MSc programme (United States)

    Heckmann, Tobias; Haas, Florian; Trappe, Martin; Cyffka, Bernd; Becht, Michael


    Natural hazards are processes occurring in the natural environment that negatively affect human society. In most instances, the definition of natural hazards implies sudden events as different as earthquakes, floods or landslides. In addition, there are other phenomena that occur more subtly or slowly, and nevertheless may have serious adverse effects on the human environment. Hence, a comprehensive study programme in natural hazards has to include not only the conspicuous causes and effects of natural catastrophes, but of environmental processes in general. Geography as a discipline is located at the interface of natural, social and economic sciences; the physical geography programme described here is designed to include the social and economic dimension as well as management issues. Modules strengthening the theoretical background of geomorphic, geological, hydrological and meteorological processes and hazards are complemented by practical work in the field and the laboratory, dealing with measuring and monitoring environmental processes. On this basis, modeling and managing skills are developed. Another thread in the transdisciplinary programme deals with sustainability and environmental policy issues, and environmental psychology (e.g. perception of and reaction to hazards). This will improve the communication and team working skills of students wherever they are part of an interdisciplinary working group. Through the involvement in research programmes, students are confronted ‘hands on' with the different aspects of environmental processes and their consequences; thus, they will be excellently but not exclusively qualified for positions in the ‘natural hazards' sector.

  9. Natural Hazards and Supply Chain Disruptions (United States)

    Haraguchi, M.


    Natural hazards distress the global economy through disruptions in supply chain networks. Moreover, despite increasing investment to infrastructure for disaster risk management, economic damages and losses caused by natural hazards are increasing. Manufacturing companies today have reduced inventories and streamlined logistics in order to maximize economic competitiveness. As a result, today's supply chains are profoundly susceptible to systemic risks, which are the risk of collapse of an entire network caused by a few node of the network. For instance, the prolonged floods in Thailand in 2011 caused supply chain disruptions in their primary industries, i.e. electronic and automotive industries, harming not only the Thai economy but also the global economy. Similar problems occurred after the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami in 2011, the Mississippi River floods and droughts during 2011 - 2013, and the Earthquake in Kumamoto Japan in 2016. This study attempts to discover what kind of effective measures are available for private companies to manage supply chain disruptions caused by floods. It also proposes a method to estimate potential risks using a Bayesian network. The study uses a Bayesian network to create synthetic networks that include variables associated with the magnitude and duration of floods, major components of supply chains such as logistics, multiple layers of suppliers, warehouses, and consumer markets. Considering situations across different times, our study shows desirable data requirements for the analysis and effective measures to improve Value at Risk (VaR) for private enterprises and supply chains.

  10. Would you rather be injured by lightning or a downed power line? Preference for natural hazards

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeffrey M. Rudski


    Full Text Available Past research has shown that many people prefer natural foods and medicines over artificial counterparts. The present study focused on examination of aversive events and hazards. Preferences were compared by having subjects consider pairs of scenarios, one natural and one artificial, matched in negative outcome and severity. Pairings were also rated along several dimensions of risk perception such as dangerousness, scariness, likelihood, and fairness. As hypothesized, natural hazards were consistently preferred to functionally identical artificial ones. Additionally, natural hazards tended to be considered less scary and dangerous, but not necessarily more unfair or unlikely than equivalent artificial counterparts. Results are discussed in terms of risk perception, and how that can lead to people diminishing risks associated with natural hazards.

  11. The overprotective parent - Bureaucratic agencies and natural hazard management


    Paul Raschky


    Due to the public good character of protective measures against natural disasters events, their allocation is very often in the realm of bureaucratic and expert agencies. Based on the economic theory of bureaucracy the behaviour of a bureau providing the good "protection against natural hazards" is analysed. The existing model is extended by further institutional constraints accounting for societal control mechanisms. The main proposition is that the allocation of protective measures through ...

  12. Hiking tourism development in protected areas and nature hazard prevention in the Lake Baikal natural territory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luzhkova Natalia


    Full Text Available Since 2010, recreational development has been permitted in strict nature reserves (zapovedniks in Russia, the most highly protected category of Russian Federal Protected Areas. As zapovedniks comply with the 1b IUCN category for wilderness preservation, human activities within the reserves have been limited and, consequently, there has been little research on the natural hazard impact for tourism. The type of recreational use permitted in the territories and their buffer zones is called Educational Tourism. It is identified as “as a specialized type of ecological tourism where the main goal is an introduction to natural and cultural attractions”. Hiking is seen as one of these suitable types of tourism within the territories of zapovedniks, due to its low impact on natural features. As hiking trails are laid through natural landscapes, it is possible that natural disasters can both damage the infrastructure and cause fatal injuries for visitors. During the planning stages of trail construction, natural hazard monitoring should be conducted. Baikalskii Nature Biosphere Zapovednik in the Lake Baikal region is used as a model territory where scientific research and engineering are employed to better develop hiking tourism. Along with the monitoring of natural processes, several scenarios for trail planning, construction, and maintenance are being analyzed under the threat of mud slides, avalanches and floods.

  13. Probabilistic disaggregation model with application to natural hazard risk assessment of portfolios


    Custer, Rocco; Nishijima, Kazuyoshi


    In natural hazard risk assessment, a resolution mismatch between hazard data and aggregated exposure data is often observed. A possible solution to this issue is the disaggregation of exposure data to match the spatial resolution of hazard data. Disaggregation models available in literature are usually deterministic and make use of auxiliary indicator, such as land cover, to spatially distribute exposures. As the dependence between auxiliary indicator and disaggregated number of exposures is ...

  14. Applying the Land Use Portfolio Model with Hazus to analyse risk from natural hazard events (United States)

    Dinitz, Laura B.; Taketa, Richard A.


    This paper describes and demonstrates the integration of two geospatial decision-support systems for natural-hazard risk assessment and management. Hazus is a risk-assessment tool developed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency to identify risks and estimate the severity of risk from natural hazards. The Land Use Portfolio Model (LUPM) is a risk-management tool developed by the U.S. Geological Survey to evaluate plans or actions intended to reduce risk from natural hazards. We analysed three mitigation policies for one earthquake scenario in the San Francisco Bay area to demonstrate the added value of using Hazus and the LUPM together. The demonstration showed that Hazus loss estimates can be input to the LUPM to obtain estimates of losses avoided through mitigation, rates of return on mitigation investment, and measures of uncertainty. Together, they offer a more comprehensive approach to help with decisions for reducing risk from natural hazards.

  15. Economic and Ethical Consequences of Natural Hazards in Alpine Valleys (EE-Con) (United States)

    Ortner, Florian; Brantl, Dirk; Meyer, Lukas; Steininger, Karl; Sass, Oliver


    The Alps and their population are particularly vulnerable to geomorphological and hydrological hazards and this problem might be amplified by ongoing climate change. Natural disasters cause severe monetary damage which often leads to the difficult question whether it socially pays to protect settlements at high costs or whether alternatively settlement areas should better be abandoned. By investigations in the Johnsbachtal and the Kleinsölktal (Styria), the interdisciplinary project "Economic and Ethical Consequences of Natural Hazards in Alpine Valleys" (EE-Con), funded by the Austrian Academy of Sciences, seeks to answer the following questions: (1) Are natural hazards and associated damages in fact increasing, and is this due to meteorological triggers, to anthropogenic factors or to internal process dynamics? (2) What is the perception and knowledge of local people, how is risk and risk prevention communicated? (3) What is the respective cost ratio between protection infrastructure, soft measures of adaptation and other options (e.g. reduction of settlement area)? (4) What legitimate claims to compensation do people have, how far does societal responsibility go and where does individual responsibility start if parts of the settlement area had to be abandoned? These questions will be tackled in an interdisciplinary cooperation between geography, economics and normative theory (philosophy). EE-Con will follow broadly the path of risk analysis and risk assessment, focusing on the temporal dimension (past - present - future) with the aim to unravel the history of natural hazards in the areas and to analyse the economic values involved. In the following, natural hazard scenarios for the future (2050 and 2100) will be developed considering the economic consequences. Besides this, the project deals with local knowledge, risk perception and risk communication, which will be investigated via group interviews and stakeholder workshops and be integrated into a human

  16. Industrial Accidents Triggered by Natural Hazards: an Emerging Risk Issue (United States)

    Renni, Elisabetta; Krausmann, Elisabeth; Basco, Anna; Salzano, Ernesto; Cozzani, Valerio


    Natural disasters such as earthquakes, tsunamis, flooding or hurricanes have recently and dramatically hit several countries worldwide. Both direct and indirect consequences involved the population, causing on the one hand a high number of fatalities and on the other hand so relevant economical losses that the national gross product may be affected for many years. Loss of critical industrial infrastructures (electricity generation and distribution, gas pipelines, oil refineries, etc.) also occurred, causing further indirect damage to the population. In several cases, accident scenarios with large releases of hazardous materials were triggered by these natural events, causing so-called "Natech events", in which the overall damage resulted from the simultaneous consequences of the natural event and of the release of hazardous substances. Toxic releases, large fires and explosions, as well as possible long-term environmental pollution, economical losses, and overloading of emergency systems were recognised by post-event studies as the main issues of these Natech scenarios. In recent years the increasing frequency and severity of some natural hazards due to climate change has slowly increased the awareness of Natech risk as an emerging risk among the stakeholders. Indeed, the iNTeg-Risk project, co-funded by the European Commission within the 7th Framework Program specifically addresses these scenarios among new technological issues on public safety. The present study, in part carried out within the iNTeg-Risk project, was aimed at the analysis and further development of methods and tools for the assessment and mitigation of Natech accidents. Available tools and knowledge gaps in the assessment of Natech scenarios were highlighted. The analysis mainly addressed the potential impact of flood, lightning and earthquake events on industrial installations where hazardous substances are present. Preliminary screening methodologies and more detailed methods based on

  17. Progress towards developing consistent design and evaluation guidelines for DOE facilities subjected to natural phenomena hazards

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kennedy, R.P.; Short, S.A.; McDonald, J.R.; McCann, M.W. Jr.; Reed, J.W.


    Probabilistic definitions of earthquake, wind and tornado natural phenomena hazards for many Department of Energy (DOE) facilities throughout the United States have been developed. In addition, definitions of the flood hazards which might affect these locations are currently being developed. The Department of Energy Natural Phenomena Hazards Panel is now preparing a document to provide guidance and criteria for DOE facility managers to assure that DOE facilities are adequately constructed to resist the effects of natural phenomena such as earthquake, strong wind and flood. The intent of this document is to provide instruction on how to utilize the hazard definitions to evaluate existing facilities and design new facilities in a manner such that the risk of adverse consequences is consistent with the cost, function, and danger to the public or environment of the facility. Potential effects on facilities of natural phenomena hazards are emphasized in this paper. The philosophy for mitigating these effects to be employed in the design and evaluation guidelines is also presented

  18. Risk-based consequences of extreme natural hazard processes in mountain regions - Multi-hazard analysis in Tyrol (Austria) (United States)

    Huttenlau, Matthias; Stötter, Johann


    Reinsurance companies are stating a high increase in natural hazard related losses, both insured and economic losses, within the last decades on a global scale. This ongoing trend can be described as a product of the dynamic in the natural and in the anthroposphere. To analyze the potential impact of natural hazard process to a certain insurance portfolio or to the society in general, reinsurance companies or risk management consultants have developed loss models. However, those models are generally not fitting the scale dependent demand on regional scales like it is appropriate (i) for analyses on the scale of a specific province or (ii) for portfolio analyses of regional insurance companies. Moreover, the scientific basis of most of the models is not transparent documented and therefore scientific evaluations concerning the methodology concepts are not possible (black box). This is contrary to the scientific principles of transparency and traceability. Especially in mountain regions like the European Alps with their inherent (i) specific characteristic on small scales, (ii) the relative high process dynamics in general, (iii) the occurrence of gravitative mass movements which are related to high relief energy and thus only exists in mountain regions, (iv) the small proportion of the area of permanent settlement on the overall area, (v) the high value concentration in the valley floors, (vi) the exposition of important infrastructures and lifelines, and others, analyses must consider these circumstances adequately. Therefore, risk-based analyses are methodically estimating the potential consequences of hazard process on the built environment standardized with the risk components (i) hazard, (ii) elements at risk, and (iii) vulnerability. However, most research and progress have been made in the field of hazard analyses, whereas the other both components are not developed accordingly. Since these three general components are influencing factors without any

  19. Natural hazard losses: A DOE (Department of Energy) perspective. Injury and property damage experience from natural phenomena hazards Department of Energy 1943-1989

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hill, J.R.


    This presentation provides a perspective of DOE losses during the past 46 years even though loss data was not readily available for all DOE operations. As such this paper is considered preliminary and more work is needed to provide an informed view of all DOE losses. Review of the reported historical losses has provided an opportunity to create an awareness of the extent and location of a wide variety of natural phenomena hazards that have caused damage at most DOE sites. Some suggestions and observations to consider are: (1) mitigation strategies may achieve greatest reductions in wind damage; (2) most damage has occurred to conventional construction; (3) lightning damage review may provide insight for design standards change; (4) flood damage occurred where least expected. Through this awareness, the author hopes we are encouraged to provide our ideas and our professional skills for a Decade of Natural Hazard Reduction in the Department of Energy

  20. Undersampling power-law size distributions: effect on the assessment of extreme natural hazards (United States)

    Geist, Eric L.; Parsons, Thomas E.


    The effect of undersampling on estimating the size of extreme natural hazards from historical data is examined. Tests using synthetic catalogs indicate that the tail of an empirical size distribution sampled from a pure Pareto probability distribution can range from having one-to-several unusually large events to appearing depleted, relative to the parent distribution. Both of these effects are artifacts caused by limited catalog length. It is more difficult to diagnose the artificially depleted empirical distributions, since one expects that a pure Pareto distribution is physically limited in some way. Using maximum likelihood methods and the method of moments, we estimate the power-law exponent and the corner size parameter of tapered Pareto distributions for several natural hazard examples: tsunamis, floods, and earthquakes. Each of these examples has varying catalog lengths and measurement thresholds, relative to the largest event sizes. In many cases where there are only several orders of magnitude between the measurement threshold and the largest events, joint two-parameter estimation techniques are necessary to account for estimation dependence between the power-law scaling exponent and the corner size parameter. Results indicate that whereas the corner size parameter of a tapered Pareto distribution can be estimated, its upper confidence bound cannot be determined and the estimate itself is often unstable with time. Correspondingly, one cannot statistically reject a pure Pareto null hypothesis using natural hazard catalog data. Although physical limits to the hazard source size and by attenuation mechanisms from source to site constrain the maximum hazard size, historical data alone often cannot reliably determine the corner size parameter. Probabilistic assessments incorporating theoretical constraints on source size and propagation effects are preferred over deterministic assessments of extreme natural hazards based on historic data.

  1. Desicion Support System For Natural Hazards (United States)

    Vyazilov, E.


    recommendations should be reasonable. To resolve the above problems or to make them less significant it is necessary to develop decision support systems (DSS). DMs need not tables with initial data, analytical, forecasting and climatic information, but messages containing warnings on critical value accidence, information on probability of hazards, information on potential losses, and information on hazardous impacts and recommendations on decision making. DSS can do the following: take into account impacts on specific points and on the total area under consideration; allow for the effects of the environment on economic entities (objects) in any geographical region to be analyzed; distinguish impacts and changes caused both by different phenomena and by their combination; signal when objects are or can be in adverse environmental conditions, e.g. in the area affected by fog, storm, tropical cyclone or in the area where the probability of hazardous ice events is very high, etc. The main component of DSS is a knowledge base based on the following concept: if we know environmental conditions it is possible to predict potential impacts on the economy; if we know impacts it is possible to give a set of recommendations on how to prevent (reduce) losses or how to use natural resources most efficiently. Decision making criteria are safety of people and property, reduction of losses, increase of profit, materials saving, etc. Knowledge base is a set of rules formulated in a formalized way using if, that, else. If "Water level in S.-Petersburg >150 cm" that "To give out warning information "Hazards for building on coastal river Neva is possible" and recommendations "The valuable goods carry out in second floor" else "To switch another rule". To have a knowledge base in place it is necessary to: develop tools of identifying and getting knowledge from experts; arrange the information flow from available information systems (operational data, analyses, forecasts, climatic information) through

  2. Geoethics: the responsibility of geoscientists in making society more aware of natural hazards (United States)

    Peppoloni, S.; Matteucci, R.; Piacente, S.; Wasowski, J.


    The damage due to geological hazards, with frequent loss of human lives, is not entirely avoidable, but can be greatly reduced through the correct land use that respects the natural processes, through prevention and mitigation efforts, through an effective and correct information to the population. Often not responsible behaviors by politicians, as well as the need for heavy investments and the lack of information make difficult the solution of problems and slow the path to a proper management of the environment, the only way to provide a significant mitigation of damages of the geological disasters. In many countries (including Italy) the importance of the Geoscientists's role is not yet sufficiently recognized, despite it is evident the necessity of a greater attention to geological problems by policy makers and public opinion, as well as a more adequate information about natural risks to the society. The commitment to ensure prevention and mitigation of geological hazards must be considered an ethical value and duty for those who possess the appropriate knowledge and skills. Within the above context, Geoscientists have a key role to play as experts in analyzing and managing the territory's vulnerability: they must take responsibility to share and communicate their knowledge more effectively with all private and public stakeholders involved, paying attention to providing balanced information about risks and addressing inevitable uncertainties in natural hazard mapping, assessment, warning, and forecasting. But Geoscientists need to be more aware of their ethical responsibility, of their social duty to serve the society, care about and protect territory, and to facilitate the desirable shift from a culture of emergency to a culture of prevention. The search for balance between short-term economic issues and wider social impacts from natural hazards is an increasingly urgent need. Geoethics must be central to society's responses to natural hazard threats.

  3. Natural Hazard Resilience - A Large-scale Transdisciplinary "National Science Challenge" for New Zealand (United States)

    Cronin, S. J.


    The National Science Challenges are initiatives to address the most important public science issues that face New Zealand with long-term funding and the combined strength of a coordinated science-sector behind them. Eleven major topics are tackled, across our human, natural and built environments. In the "Resilience Challenge" we address New Zealand's natural hazards. Alongside severe metrological threats, New Zealand also faces one of the highest levels of earthquake and volcanic hazard in the world. Resilience is a hotly discussed concept, here, we take the view: Resilience encapsulates the features of a system to anticipate threats, acknowledge there will be impacts (no matter how prepared we are), quickly pick up the pieces, as well as learn and adapt from the experience to better absorb and rebound from future shocks. Our research must encompass innovation in building and lifelines engineering, planning and regulation, emergency management practice, alongside understanding how our natural hazard systems work, how we monitor them and how our communities/governance/industries can be influenced and encouraged (e.g., via economic incentives) to develop and implement resilience practice. This is a complex interwoven mix of areas and is best addressed through case-study areas where researchers and the users of the research can jointly identify problems and co-develop science solutions. I will highlight some of the strengths and weaknesses of this coordinated approach to an all-hazard, all-country problem, using the example of the Resilience Challenge approach after its first two and a half years of operation. Key issues include balancing investment into high-profile (and often high consequence), but rare hazards against the frequent "monthly" hazards that collectively occupy regional and local governance. Also, it is clear that despite increasingly sophisticated hazard and hazard mitigation knowledge being generated in engineering and social areas, a range of policy

  4. Natural hazards knowledge and risk perception of Wujie indigenous community in Taiwan (United States)

    Roder, Giulia; Ruljigaljig, Tjuku; Lin, Ching-Weei; Tarolli, Paolo


    The purpose of this work is to investigate the natural hazard knowledge and risk perception of Wujie indigenous community, located in Fazhi Village in the Central Mountain Range of Taiwan. Taiwan has encountered many different types of natural hazards (e.g. landslides and debris flows) that have increased sharply in the last century. Because of that, they are one of the most critical issues for the government and for the people living in mountainous areas. These areas are mainly populated by indigenous people that have experienced economic competition and military conflict with a series of colonizing periods causing a progressive loss of their original cultural identity. The motivation of selecting the case study of Wujie community is because (i) it has suffered, more than others, generations of devastating colonial oppression by foreign governments; (ii) the consequences of hydroelectric projects that moved a lot of water and sediment to the valley and modified the path of the river through the years; (iii) the documented landslides and debris flows occurred in the region during the last decades. Two questions appear spontaneously: How indigenous people are nowadays living with natural hazards? Have land use change or any other human footprint affected their knowledge and perception on natural hazards? This research, the first carried out in Taiwan involving an indigenous community, can offer a unique opportunity to answer these questions. The investigation utilized a variety of participatory methods conducted at the household and community level by the use of 65 face-to-face interviews. Results revealed that residents felt a higher worry about landslide and flood risks, and a slight preparedness to face them. This discrepancy may derive from an unsatisfactory level of communication and information, and the most considerable differences were found between the evaluations of individual subjects as opposed to overall communities. Results revealed also the complexity

  5. Characterizing the nature and variability of avalanche hazard in western Canada (United States)

    Shandro, Bret; Haegeli, Pascal


    The snow and avalanche climate types maritime, continental and transitional are well established and have been used extensively to characterize the general nature of avalanche hazard at a location, study inter-seasonal and large-scale spatial variabilities and provide context for the design of avalanche safety operations. While researchers and practitioners have an experience-based understanding of the avalanche hazard associated with the three climate types, no studies have described the hazard character of an avalanche climate in detail. Since the 2009/2010 winter, the consistent use of Statham et al. (2017) conceptual model of avalanche hazard in public avalanche bulletins in Canada has created a new quantitative record of avalanche hazard that offers novel opportunities for addressing this knowledge gap. We identified typical daily avalanche hazard situations using self-organizing maps (SOMs) and then calculated seasonal prevalence values of these situations. This approach produces a concise characterization that is conducive to statistical analyses, but still provides a comprehensive picture that is informative for avalanche risk management due to its link to avalanche problem types. Hazard situation prevalence values for individual seasons, elevations bands and forecast regions provide unprecedented insight into the inter-seasonal and spatial variability of avalanche hazard in western Canada.

  6. Fourth DOE Natural Phenomena Hazards Mitigation Conference: Proceedings

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)


    This conference allowed an interchange in the natural phenomena area among designers, safety professionals, and managers. The papers presented in Volume I of the proceedings are from sessions I - VIII which cover the general topics of: DOE standards, lessons learned and walkdowns, wind, waste tanks, ground motion, testing and materials, probabilistic seismic hazards, risk assessment, base isolation and energy dissipation, and lifelines and floods. Individual papers are indexed separately. (GH)

  7. Studying and Improving Human Response to Natural Hazards: Lessons from the Virtual Hurricane Lab (United States)

    Meyer, R.; Broad, K.; Orlove, B. S.


    One of the most critical challenges facing communities in areas prone to natural hazards is how to best encourage residents to invest in individual and collective actions that would reduce the damaging impact of low-probability, high-consequence, environmental events. Unfortunately, what makes this goal difficult to achieve is that the relative rarity natural hazards implies that many who face the risk of natural hazards have no previous experience to draw on when making preparation decisions, or have prior experience that provides misleading guidance on how best to prepare. For example, individuals who have experienced strings of minor earthquakes or near-misses from tropical cyclones may become overly complacent about the risks that extreme events actually pose. In this presentation we report the preliminary findings of a program of work that explores the use of realistic multi-media hazard simulations designed for two purposes: 1) to serve as a basic research tool for studying of how individuals make decisions to prepare for rare natural hazards in laboratory settings; and 2) to serve as an educational tool for giving people in hazard-prone areas virtual experience in hazard preparation. We demonstrate a prototype simulation in which participants experience the approach of a virtual hurricane, where they have the opportunity to invest in different kinds of action to protect their home from damage. As the hurricane approaches participants have access to an “information dashboard” in which they can gather information about the storm threat from a variety of natural sources, including mock television weather broadcasts, web sites, and conversations with neighbors. In response to this information they then have the opportunity to invest in different levels of protective actions. Some versions of the simulation are designed as games, where participants are rewarded based on their ability to make the optimal trade-off between under and over-preparing for the

  8. Using systems gaming to explore decision-making under uncertainty in natural hazard crises (United States)

    McCaughey, Jamie W.; Finnigan, David


    Faced with uncertain scientific forecasts of a potential hazard, it is perhaps natural to wait and see. As we wait, uncertainties do decrease, but so do our options to minimise impacts of the hazard. This tradeoff is fundamental to preparing for natural hazards, yet difficult to communicate. Interactive systems gaming is one promising way forward. We are developing in-person interactive games, drawing on role-playing and other table-top scenario exercises in natural hazards, as well as on game-based modeling of complex systems. Our games model an unfolding natural hazard crisis (such as volcanic unrest or an approaching typhoon) as a complex social-physical system. Participants take on the roles of diverse stakeholder groups (including government, scientists, media, farmers, city residents, and others) with differing expertise, responsibilities, and priorities. Interactions among these groups play out in a context of decreasing scientific uncertainty and decreasing options for actions to reduce societal risk. Key design challenges are (1) to engage players without trivialising the real-world context; (2) to provide the right level of guidance for players to navigate the system; and (3) to enable players to face realistic tradeoffs and see realistic consequences of their choices, without feeling frustrated that the game is set up for them to fail. We will first prototype the games with general public and secondary-school participants, then adjust this for specialist groups working in disaster management. We will illustrate participatory systems gaming techniques in our presentation 'A toolkit of systems gaming techniques' in the companion EGU session EOS6: 'Perform! A platform to discuss art & science projects with live presentation'.

  9. Probabilistic disaggregation of a spatial portfolio of exposure for natural hazard risk assessment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Custer, Rocco; Nishijima, Kazuyoshi


    In natural hazard risk assessment situations are encountered where information on the portfolio of exposure is only available in a spatially aggregated form, hindering a precise risk assessment. Recourse might be found in the spatial disaggregation of the portfolio of exposure to the resolution...... of a portfolio of buildings in two communes in Switzerland and the results are compared to sample observations. The relevance of probabilistic disaggregation uncertainty in natural hazard risk assessment is illustrated with the example of a simple flood risk assessment....

  10. Public sentiment and movement patterns during natural hazards (United States)

    Huang, Q.; Guo, C.


    Recently, we have unfortunately witnessed a series of deadly hurricane events, including Harvey, Irma, Jose, Maria and Nate. Effective disaster management actions such as getting citizen sheltered and evacuated can significantly reduce injuries and fatalities. A more comprehensive understanding of citizen's perceptions (e.g., sentiment) about a disaster and movement behaviors (e.g., evacuation) will help improve disaster management and decision making during natural hazards. With the popularity of various social media platforms (i.e. Twitter), there has been great potentials in using social media data to detect and analyze citizen's perceptions and moving behaviors before, during and after a natural hazard. Using the geo-tagged tweets generated during recent hurricane events, the study will examine the movement interactions between citizens and a hurricane and also explore citizens' tweeting behaviors and sentiments at different stages of a disaster. The results provide insights on understanding 1) spatiotemporal patterns of public movements (i.e., when and where did people's movements happen), 2) how were people's movements related to the hurricane trajectory, 3) when did people in different locations start to pay attention to the hurricane, and finally 4) how were the sentiments of people in different places towards the hurricane during different disaster stages.

  11. GIS and RS-based modelling of potential natural hazard areas in Pehchevo municipality, Republic of Macedonia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Milevski Ivica


    Full Text Available In this paper, one approach of Geographic Information System (GIS and Remote Sensing (RS assessment of potential natural hazard areas (excess erosion, landslides, flash floods and fires is presented. For that purpose Pehchevo Municipality in the easternmost part of the Republic of Macedonia is selected as a case study area because of high local impact of natural hazards on the environment, social-demographic situation and local economy. First of all, most relevant static factors for each type of natural hazard are selected (topography, land cover, anthropogenic objects and infrastructure. With GIS and satellite imagery, multi-layer calculation is performed based on available traditional equations, clustering or discreditation procedures. In such way suitable relatively “static” natural hazard maps (models are produced. Then, dynamic (mostly climate related factors are included in previous models resulting in appropriate scenarios correlated with different amounts of precipitation, temperature, wind direction etc. Finally, GIS based scenarios are evaluated and tested with field check or very fine resolution Google Earth imagery showing good accuracy. Further development of such GIS models in connection with automatic remote meteorological stations and dynamic satellite imagery (like MODIS will provide on-time warning for coming natural hazard avoiding potential damages or even causalities.

  12. Fluor Daniel Hanford implementation plan for DOE Order 5480.28. Natural phenomena hazards mitigation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Conrads, T.J.


    Natural phenomena hazards (NPH) are unexpected acts of nature that pose a threat or danger to workers, the public, or the environment. Earthquakes, extreme winds (hurricane and tornado), snow, flooding, volcanic ashfall, and lightning strikes are examples of NPH that could occur at the Hanford Site. U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) policy requires facilities to be designed, constructed, and operated in a manner that protects workers, the public, and the environment from hazards caused by natural phenomena. DOE Order 5480.28, Natural Phenomena Hazards Mitigation, includes rigorous new natural phenomena criteria for the design of new DOE facilities, as well as for the evaluation and, if necessary, upgrade of existing DOE facilities. The Order was transmitted to Westinghouse Hanford Company in 1993 for compliance and is also identified in the Project Hanford Management Contract, Section J, Appendix C. Criteria and requirements of DOE Order 5480.28 are included in five standards, the last of which, DOE-STD-1023, was released in fiscal year 1996. Because the Order was released before all of its required standards were released, enforcement of the Order was waived pending release of the last standard and determination of an in-force date by DOE Richland Operations Office (DOE-RL). Agreement also was reached between the Management and Operations Contractor and DOE-RL that the Order would become enforceable for new structures, systems, and components (SSCS) 60 days following issue of a new order-based design criteria in HNF-PRO-97, Engineering Design and Evaluation. The order also requires that commitments addressing existing SSCs be included in an implementation plan that is to be issued 1 year following the release of the last standard. Subsequently, WHC-SP-1175, Westinghouse Hanford Company Implementation Plan for DOE Order 5480.28, Natural Phenomena Hazards Mitigation, Rev. 0, was issued in November 1996, and this document, HNF-SP-1175, Fluor Daniel Hanford

  13. Cost assessment of natural hazards in Europe - state-of-the-art, knowledge gaps and recommendations (United States)

    Meyer, V.; Becker, N.; Markantonis, V.; Schwarze, R.; van den Bergh, J. C. J. M.; Bouwer, L. M.; Bubeck, P.; Ciavola, P.; Thieken, A. H.; Genovese, E.; Green, C.; Hallegatte, S.; Kreibich, H.; Lequeux, Q.; Viavattenne, C.; Logar, I.; Papyrakis, E.; Pfurtscheller, C.; Poussin, J.; Przyluski, V.


    Effective and efficient reduction of natural hazard risks requires a thorough understanding of the costs of natural hazards in order to develop sustainable risk management strategies. The current methods that assess the costs of different natural hazards employ a diversity of terminologies and approaches for different hazards and impacted sectors. This makes it difficult to arrive at robust, comprehensive and comparable cost figures. The CONHAZ (Costs of Natural Hazards) project aimed to compile and synthesise current knowledge on cost assessment methods in order to strengthen the role of cost assessments in the development of integrated natural hazard management and adaptation planning. In order to achieve this, CONHAZ has adopted a comprehensive approach, considering natural hazards ranging from droughts, floods and coastal hazards to Alpine hazards, as well as different impacted sectors and cost types. Its specific objectives have been 1) to compile the state-of-the-art methods for cost assessment; 2) to analyse and assess these methods in terms of technical aspects, as well as terminology, data quality and availability, and research gaps; and 3) to synthesise resulting knowledge into recommendations and to identify further research needs. This presentation summarises the main results of CONHAZ. CONHAZ differentiates between direct tangible damages, losses due to business interruption, indirect damages, intangible effects, and costs of risk mitigation. It is shown that the main focus of cost assessment methods and their application in practice is on direct costs, while existing methods for assessing intangible and indirect effects are rather rarely applied and methods for assessing indirect effects often cannot be used on the scale of interest (e.g. the regional scale). Furthermore, methods often focus on single sectors and/or hazards, and only very few are able to reflect several sectors or multiple hazards. Process understanding and its use in cost assessment

  14. Teleplaneta: a 7 year-long effort to spread natural hazard's knowledge (United States)

    Calvo, David; Álvarez, Domingo; Marrero, Nieves; Pérez, Nemesio M.


    One of the main and toughest goals for a geoscientist is to have a properly communication with the society when the time comes for showing results, scientific advances or whatever kind of remarkable event. The complexity of the scientific terminology, and the existence of a few communication channels, often prevents lay people to know about how the advance of science is occurring or how new discoveries are helping us to have a better understanding about the Planet Earth. In that respect, mass media provide the most powerful tool to enhance this communication, both radio and TV broadcasting, since the wealth of Earth-sciences' related information available on issues like global climate, water, energy and natural hazards remain largely unknown to the public and often untapped by policy and decision makers. Almost 75% of the Earth population lives in areas that had been hit, at least once in the last 20 years, by earthquakes, severe storms, flooding or droughts. TELEPLANETA is a joint effort of the Spanish National Public Television in the Canary Islands (RTVE-Canarias) and the Instituto Volcanológico de Canarias (INVOLCAN) for raising public awareness of the impact of these natural hazards in the society, with an understandable language away from too much technical terms but basically avoiding the gruesome side of this kind of events. TELEPLANETA tries to give a scientific explanation of why these hazards occur, focusing on the visual communication with the viewers. This weekly TV program is broadcasted through the worldwide coverage news channel - 24 Hours Channel - of the Spanish National Public TV (TVE). Actually immersed on our 7th season, TELEPLANETA has gone through a challenging improvement, from a barely 4 minute outsider program to a 20 minutes long, full enhanced TV show. We actually provide accurate information about natural hazards, but also a weekly review of twitteŕs best pictures and comments regarding nature, as well as scientific report at the most

  15. How to Reinforce the “Defence-in-Depth” in NPP by Taking into Account Natural Hazards?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lavarenne, C.; Herviou, K.; Picot, C.; Dupuy, P., E-mail:, E-mail: [Institut de Radioprotection et de Sûreté Nucléaire (IRSN), Pôle Sûreté Nucléaire, Fontenay aux Roses (France)


    The “defence-in-depth” (DiD) principle is the fundamental safety principle for the design and operation of nuclear power plants. This principle aims to prevent as far as possible initiating events and managing their consequences if preventive provisions failed. It has to be applied to the protection against hazards so as to limit their likelihood and/or their consequences by the implementation of prevention, control and mitigation provisions in NPPs consistently with provisions for internal events. So far, the protection of nuclear power plants against external hazards follows a “load-cases” approach, which differs from the approach used for internal events. In 2011, the Fukushima accident showed that, for a beyond design hazard or a combination of hazards not considered at the design stage, all levels of defence may be swept away simultaneously and may lead to a disaster. Natural hazards can therefore be considered as a potential common cause of failure affecting at the same time all levels of the “defence-in-depth”. In France, the definition and the implementation of a post-Fukushima “Hardened Safety Core” for operating NPPs should compensate for some weaknesses in the current approach and improve significantly the robustness of the installations against natural hazards. For future reactors, a new approach based on the definition of two domains, “design basis” and “design extension” for natural hazards, is examined in order to fulfil ambitious general plant safety objectives. It turns out that safety assessments related to natural hazards raise some challenges and difficulties, especially to characterize events with very low frequencies in a context of limited data, to define combinations of hazards (eventually with internal events) and to consider events that go beyond the design basis. For these issues, international guidance and discussions may be fruitful. (author)

  16. Natural Hazards and the press in the western Mediterranean region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Llasat-Botija


    Full Text Available This study analyses press articles published between 1982 and 2005 in an attempt to describe the social perception of natural hazards in Catalonia. The articles included in the database have been classified according to different types of risk. In addition, the study examines the evolution of each type of risk in the press coverage during the study period. Finally, the results have been compared to data provided by insurance companies with respect to compensations paid out for damages. Conclusions show that floods are the most important natural hazard in the region, but that the number of headlines for each event is greater in the case of snowfalls and forest fires. Factors such as the season of the year, the proximity of the affected region to the capital, the topical issues at the time, and the presence of other important news must be considered when the impact in the press is analysed.

  17. Spontaneous and Widespread Electricity Generation in Natural Deep-Sea Hydrothermal Fields. (United States)

    Yamamoto, Masahiro; Nakamura, Ryuhei; Kasaya, Takafumi; Kumagai, Hidenori; Suzuki, Katsuhiko; Takai, Ken


    Deep-sea hydrothermal vents discharge abundant reductive energy into oxidative seawater. Herein, we demonstrated that in situ measurements of redox potentials on the surfaces of active hydrothermal mineral deposits were more negative than the surrounding seawater potential, driving electrical current generation. We also demonstrated that negative potentials in the surface of minerals were widespread in the hydrothermal fields, regardless of the proximity to hydrothermal fluid discharges. Lab experiments verified that the negative potential of the mineral surface was induced by a distant electron transfer from the hydrothermal fluid through the metallic and catalytic properties of minerals. These results indicate that electric current is spontaneously and widely generated in natural mineral deposits in deep-sea hydrothermal fields. Our discovery provides important insights into the microbial communities that are supported by extracellular electron transfer and the prebiotic chemical and metabolic evolution of the ocean hydrothermal systems. © 2017 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  18. The Role of Knowledge in the prevention of natural hazards and related risks.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Enrico Miccadei


    Full Text Available Human activities, especially over the last two centuries, have had a huge impact on the environment and the landscape. Mankind is able to control and induce landscape changes but is subject to natural processes and hazards due to severe and extreme events (particularly earthquakes but also landslides and flooding and related risks. Risks are the result of hazards, exposed elements and vulnerability and they are consequently not only an expression of the natural environment, but also related to human interaction with nature. Risks need to be addressed regularly by means of a high level of knowledge in order to provide most up­to­date information for any decision which needs to be taken by any party involved. A high level of knowledge concerning natural hazards and related risks stems from the geological and geomorphological history and from the historical records of the natural processes and grows with multi­scale, multi­temporal and multidisciplinary studies and investigations, which include land management, economic and social issues. A strong effort has to be made in this way to improve risk assessment and the enforcement of existing laws and ­ if necessary ­ new laws, really stem from recent disasters. This will help to achieve improved and effective land management, based on an interdisciplinary approach in which expert geologists and land managers will play a role, because of the importance of natural processes in inducing risks.

  19. The NHERI RAPID Facility: Enabling the Next-Generation of Natural Hazards Reconnaissance (United States)

    Wartman, J.; Berman, J.; Olsen, M. J.; Irish, J. L.; Miles, S.; Gurley, K.; Lowes, L.; Bostrom, A.


    The NHERI post-disaster, rapid response research (or "RAPID") facility, headquartered at the University of Washington (UW), is a collaboration between UW, Oregon State University, Virginia Tech, and the University of Florida. The RAPID facility will enable natural hazard researchers to conduct next-generation quick response research through reliable acquisition and community sharing of high-quality, post-disaster data sets that will enable characterization of civil infrastructure performance under natural hazard loads, evaluation of the effectiveness of current and previous design methodologies, understanding of socio-economic dynamics, calibration of computational models used to predict civil infrastructure component and system response, and development of solutions for resilient communities. The facility will provide investigators with the hardware, software and support services needed to collect, process and assess perishable interdisciplinary data following extreme natural hazard events. Support to the natural hazards research community will be provided through training and educational activities, field deployment services, and by promoting public engagement with science and engineering. Specifically, the RAPID facility is undertaking the following strategic activities: (1) acquiring, maintaining, and operating state-of-the-art data collection equipment; (2) developing and supporting mobile applications to support interdisciplinary field reconnaissance; (3) providing advisory services and basic logistics support for research missions; (4) facilitating the systematic archiving, processing and visualization of acquired data in DesignSafe-CI; (5) training a broad user base through workshops and other activities; and (6) engaging the public through citizen science, as well as through community outreach and education. The facility commenced operations in September 2016 and will begin field deployments beginning in September 2018. This poster will provide an overview

  20. The Unsustainable Trend of Natural Hazard Losses in the United States

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melanie Gall


    Full Text Available In the United States, direct losses from natural hazards are on the rise with hurricanes, flooding, and severe storms contributing about three quarters of the total damages. While losses from severe storms have been stable over the past fifty years, hurricane and flood losses have tripled. Per capita losses are also increasing showing that impacts outpace population growth with high per capita losses occurring largely in the Southeast and Midwest. If the loss escalation of the past two decades continues into the future, then direct losses of $300 to $400 billion within a single decade are possible. In order to reverse this trend, sustainable development, vulnerability reduction, and hazard mitigation must become priorities and current loss reduction efforts need to be evaluated and re-assessed in terms of their effectiveness. These conclusions are drawn from the analysis of spatial and temporal trends in direct losses from natural hazards using SHELDUSTM data from 1960 through 2009. Loss data are adjusted for inflation, population, and wealth to capture both trends in total losses and per capita losses. The loss data are then compared to disaster-related federal government and private insurance expenditures.

  1. Towards a common formalization of resilience and vulnerability to natural hazards (United States)

    Rougé, Charles; Mathias, Jean-Denis; Deffuant, Guillaume


    Resilience and vulnerability are two widely-used concepts when it comes to describe the potential impacts of natural hazards on a social and ecological system. They are an attractive way to communicate both with stakeholders and between the different disciplinary fields that use them in that context. Therefore, a formal definition of the concepts is warranted so as to provide a non-ambiguous reference for discussion and avoid misunderstandings. Besides, such a formalization should strive to formalize both concepts together so as to use their complimentarity. This abstract uses a stochastic controlled dynamical system formulation to propose a common framework for the definition of both resilience and vulnerability. Stochasticity represents all sources of uncertainty post-hazard, and the hazard is assumed to be an exogenous input. This mathematical representation highlights how the interplay between a natural hazard, the system's dynamic and the possible action policies influence the final outcome after the hazard hits. It also clarifies the role of normative choices in defining indicators that may inform or guide the system's management. More importantly, we demonstrate how the proposed framework may serve as a basis to generate indicators that are representative of general definitions of the concepts, yet flexible enough to be easily adapted to very diverse situations. Resilience is the ability for the system to keep or recover its properties of interest after a perturbation, while vulnerability is defined in a most general way as a measure of future harm. The definition of vulnerability leads to a variety of possible indicators, and ultimately to the identification of safe configurations of the system. Being resilient is then the fact of returning to a safe configuration, and the probability of resilience is that of doing so within a pre-defined time frame. Then, indicators may be designed around the probability distribution of return times. We show how viability

  2. Conceptualizing community resilience to natural hazards - the emBRACE framework (United States)

    Kruse, Sylvia; Abeling, Thomas; Deeming, Hugh; Fordham, Maureen; Forrester, John; Jülich, Sebastian; Nuray Karanci, A.; Kuhlicke, Christian; Pelling, Mark; Pedoth, Lydia; Schneiderbauer, Stefan


    The level of community is considered to be vital for building disaster resilience. Yet, community resilience as a scientific concept often remains vaguely defined and lacks the guiding characteristics necessary for analysing and enhancing resilience on the ground. The emBRACE framework of community resilience presented in this paper provides a heuristic analytical tool for understanding, explaining and measuring community resilience to natural hazards. It was developed in an iterative process building on existing scholarly debates, on empirical case study work in five countries and on participatory consultation with community stakeholders where the framework was applied and ground-tested in different contexts and for different hazard types. The framework conceptualizes resilience across three core domains: (i) resources and capacities, (ii) actions and (iii) learning. These three domains are conceptualized as intrinsically conjoined within a whole. Community resilience is influenced by these integral elements as well as by extra-community forces comprising disaster risk governance and thus laws, policies and responsibilities on the one hand and on the other, the general societal context, natural and human-made disturbances and system change over time. The framework is a graphically rendered heuristic, which through application can assist in guiding the assessment of community resilience in a systematic way and identifying key drivers and barriers of resilience that affect any particular hazard-exposed community.

  3. U.S. Geological Survey natural hazards science strategy: promoting the safety, security, and economic well-being of the Nation (United States)

    Holmes, Robert R.; Jones, Lucile M.; Eidenshink, Jeffery C.; Godt, Jonathan W.; Kirby, Stephen H.; Love, Jeffrey J.; Neal, Christina A.; Plant, Nathaniel G.; Plunkett, Michael L.; Weaver, Craig S.; Wein, Anne; Perry, Suzanne C.


    The mission of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in natural hazards is to develop and apply hazard science to help protect the safety, security, and economic well-being of the Nation. The costs and consequences of natural hazards can be enormous, and each year more people and infrastructure are at risk. USGS scientific research—founded on detailed observations and improved understanding of the responsible physical processes—can help to understand and reduce natural hazard risks and to make and effectively communicate reliable statements about hazard characteristics, such as frequency, magnitude, extent, onset, consequences, and where possible, the time of future events. To accomplish its broad hazard mission, the USGS maintains an expert workforce of scientists and technicians in the earth sciences, hydrology, biology, geography, social and behavioral sciences, and other fields, and engages cooperatively with numerous agencies, research institutions, and organizations in the public and private sectors, across the Nation and around the world. The scientific expertise required to accomplish the USGS mission in natural hazards includes a wide range of disciplines that this report refers to, in aggregate, as hazard science. In October 2010, the Natural Hazards Science Strategy Planning Team (H–SSPT) was charged with developing a long-term (10–year) Science Strategy for the USGS mission in natural hazards. This report fulfills that charge, with a document hereinafter referred to as the Strategy, to provide scientific observations, analyses, and research that are critical for the Nation to become more resilient to natural hazards. Science provides the information that decisionmakers need to determine whether risk management activities are worthwhile. Moreover, as the agency with the perspective of geologic time, the USGS is uniquely positioned to extend the collective experience of society to prepare for events outside current memory. The USGS has critical

  4. Applying the Land Use Portfolio Model to Estimate Natural-Hazard Loss and Risk - A Hypothetical Demonstration for Ventura County, California (United States)

    Dinitz, Laura B.


    With costs of natural disasters skyrocketing and populations increasingly settling in areas vulnerable to natural hazards, society is challenged to better allocate its limited risk-reduction resources. In 2000, Congress passed the Disaster Mitigation Act, amending the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, Pub. L. 93-288, 1988; Federal Emergency Management Agency, 2002, 2008b; Disaster Mitigation Act, 2000), mandating that State, local, and tribal communities prepare natural-hazard mitigation plans to qualify for pre-disaster mitigation grants and post-disaster aid. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) was assigned to coordinate and implement hazard-mitigation programs, and it published information about specific mitigation-plan requirements and the mechanisms (through the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program-HMGP) for distributing funds (Federal Emergency Management Agency, 2002). FEMA requires that each community develop a mitigation strategy outlining long-term goals to reduce natural-hazard vulnerability, mitigation objectives and specific actions to reduce the impacts of natural hazards, and an implementation plan for those actions. The implementation plan should explain methods for prioritizing, implementing, and administering the actions, along with a 'cost-benefit review' justifying the prioritization. FEMA, along with the National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS), supported the development of HAZUS ('Hazards U.S.'), a geospatial natural-hazards loss-estimation tool, to help communities quantify potential losses and to aid in the selection and prioritization of mitigation actions. HAZUS was expanded to a multiple-hazard version, HAZUS-MH, that combines population, building, and natural-hazard science and economic data and models to estimate physical damages, replacement costs, and business interruption for specific natural-hazard scenarios. HAZUS

  5. A framework for profiling the characteristics of risk governance in natural hazard contexts (United States)

    Walker, G.; Tweed, F.; Whittle, R.


    Over recent decades there have been moves away from traditional forms of government towards broader practices of "governance". These moves are as relevant to the handling of natural hazards as they are to other societal concerns. Key characteristics of such changes include the emergence of multi-level governance processes, shifts away from the exercise of centralised authority towards the involvement and collaboration of a multiplicity of actors, the creation of new forms of authority and control, and changing distributions of responsibilities between the state and other actors. However, the extent to which these shifts have taken place across the varied national contexts in Europe and can be observed specifically in relation to the governance of natural hazards is not at all clear. Such developments may also be evaluated in different ways; where some might see progressive reforms, others might see damaging undermining of established arrangements. In this paper, we propose a risk governance profiling framework that can be used to draw out the key characteristics of the ways in which natural hazards are governed in a particular governance setting. The framework can be flexibly applied in relation to a specific hazard and national, regional or local context, and enables qualitative profiling across a spectrum of eight key governance characteristics. Past trends and likely future changes can also be represented. We discuss the formulation of this framework as well as giving examples of profiles for different hazards in different parts of Europe. We suggest ways in which comparisons can be made between governance profiles, providing a stimulus and focus for debate and discussion around the trends of change in governance practice that have been, and are continuing, to take place.

  6. Logistic regression applied to natural hazards: rare event logistic regression with replications (United States)

    Guns, M.; Vanacker, V.


    Statistical analysis of natural hazards needs particular attention, as most of these phenomena are rare events. This study shows that the ordinary rare event logistic regression, as it is now commonly used in geomorphologic studies, does not always lead to a robust detection of controlling factors, as the results can be strongly sample-dependent. In this paper, we introduce some concepts of Monte Carlo simulations in rare event logistic regression. This technique, so-called rare event logistic regression with replications, combines the strength of probabilistic and statistical methods, and allows overcoming some of the limitations of previous developments through robust variable selection. This technique was here developed for the analyses of landslide controlling factors, but the concept is widely applicable for statistical analyses of natural hazards.

  7. Geomorphology and natural hazards of the selected glacial valleys, Cordillera Blanca, Peru

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Klimeš, Jan


    Roč. 47, č. 2 (2012), s. 25-31 ISSN 0300-5402 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GAP209/11/1000 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z30460519 Keywords : geomorphologic map * natural hazards * glacial lakes Subject RIV: DE - Earth Magnetism, Geodesy, Geography

  8. Guidelines for the development of natural phenomena hazards design criteria for surface facilities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nelson, T.A.; Hossain, Q.A.; Murray, R.C.


    This paper discusses the rationale behind the guidelines, criteria, and methodologies that are currently used for natural phenomena hazard design and evaluation of DOE nuclear and non-nuclear facilities. The bases for the performance goals and usage categories specified in UCRL-15910 are examined, and the sources of intentional conservatism in the analyses, design, and evaluation methods and criteria are identified. Outlines of recent developments/changes in DOE Orders related to Natural Phenomena hazard mitigation are also presented. Finally, the authors recommend the use of DOE methodologies as embodied in UCRL-15910 for design and evaluation of surface facilities of the high level nuclear waste repository site

  9. Risks to offshore installations in Europe due to natural hazards (United States)

    Necci, Amos; Krausmann, Elisabeth


    Natural hazards, such as storms, earthquakes, or lightning are a major threat to industry. In particular, chemical plants, storage facilities, pipelines, and offshore oil and gas facilities are vulnerable to natural events which can cause hazardous materials releases and thereby endanger workers, the population and the environment. These technological accidents are commonly referred to as Natech accidents. Recent events have increased concerns about safety in the offshore oil and gas sector, and the need for improving knowledge on the matter has become evident. With those premises, we analyzed accidents, near misses and accident precursors at offshore facilities in Europe caused by natural events using both a statistical and a qualitative approach. For this purpose, we screened the World Offshore Accident Database (WOAD) to identify all incidents that featured natural events as causes or aggravating factors. A dataset of 1,085 global Natech events was built for the statistical analysis. Among those, a subset composed of 303 European records was selected. The results of the analysis showed that offshore Natech events in Europe are frequent; they resulted, however, in low consequences. The main threat to offshore facilities resulted from bad weather, such as strong winds and heavy seas. Storms can put intense loads on the structural parts of offshore installations, eventually exceeding design resistance specifications. Several incidents triggered by lightning strikes and earthquakes were also recorded. Substantial differences in terms of vulnerability, damage modality and consequences emerged between fixed and floating offshore structures. The main damage mode for floating structures was the failure of station keeping systems due to the rupture of mooring or anchors, mainly caused by adverse meteorological conditions. Most of the incidents at fixed offshore structures in Europe involved falling loads for both metal jacket and concrete base platforms due to storms. In

  10. Operational and contractual impacts in E and P offshore during predicted natural hazards

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Benevides, Paulo Roberto Correa de Sa e [PETROBRAS, Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil)


    Generally, when E and P operators using DP (Dynamic Positioning) are advised previously of a possible natural hazard occurrence, usually they consider it like an emergency situation and their main action is oriented only to prepare the first response and use the 'force majeure' argumentation to protect itself from any additional responsibility. When the natural phenomenon actually happens, the expenses due to the losses will be accepted because it was already considered in its budget as 'Losses due to accident' and it will be shared by the partners of the project according to the correspondent contractual terms. This paper describes real cases of the evolution of predictions for natural hazards in offshore basins in Brazil, Western Africa and Gulf of Mexico where PETROBRAS and many other oil companies have used DP operations. It proposes some alternative procedures through the BCM (Business Continuity Management) to manage natural crisis instead of the common use of the traditional 'force majeure' argumentation. (author)

  11. Natural Hazards in Earth Science education projects (United States)

    Ferrero, Elena; Magagna, Alessandra


    In the last decades, the awareness of the role of geoscientists in the society increased, while a deeper awareness of the importance of an ethical behavior developed in the geoscientists professional work, in the communication with the public, in the students and teachers training. Recently, the scientific contributions on geoethics have increased, as well as the organization of special scientific sessions in important international congresses, consolidated by the publication of significant synthesis, proceedings of conferences, special issues of prestigious journals of Geosciences. Starting from these assumptions, considering that geoethic involves widespread interests of different cultural fields, it is proposed a review of training activities related to Natural Hazards developed at the University of Turin, in collaboration with other institutions and authorities of Piemonte region (Italy). Different activities will be exposed, based on the same goals and methods, shared within an interdisciplinary research group. A few examples of these activities will be mentioned belonging to institutional training (courses and university laboratories, thesis and doctoral dissertations, graduate schools for teachers training, masters and seminars), but also collaboration with Natural History Museums and Natural Parks of the Piemonte region, as well as occasional workshops proposed in conferences, seminars developed with Teachers Associations, single didactic proposals offered in schools. These activities include, as an example, events of tsunami in the Pacific Ocean, floods and slopes instability events, abandoned waste and interference with soil and groundwater, risk of degradation of fossil localities etc. These proposals were structured in order to carry out didactic research on students' misconceptions, on the conceptual difficulties of certain topics, on the skills of abstraction required: some relevant concepts are extremely difficult to conceive, as it happens

  12. geomorphological mapping and geophysical profiling for the evaluation of natural hazards in an alpine catchment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Seijmonsbergen, A.C.; de Graaff, L.W.S.


    Liechtenstein has faced an increasing number of natural hazards over recent decades: debris flows, slides, snow avalanches and floods repeatedly endanger the local infrastructure. Geomorphological field mapping and geo-electrical profiling was used to assess hazards near Malbun, a village

  13. The approaches for the decision support in case natural hazards (United States)

    Vyazilov, Evgeny; Chunyaev, Nikita


    In spite of using highly automated systems of measurement, collecting, storing, handling, prediction and delivery of information on the marine environment, including natural hazards, the amount of damage from natural phenomena increases. Because information on the marine environment delivered to the industrial facilities not effectively used. To such information pays little attention by individual decision-makers and not always perform preventive measures necessary for reduce and prevent damage. Automation of information support will improve the efficiency management of the marine activities. In Russia develops "The Unified system of the information about World ocean" (ESIMO,, that integrates observation, analysis, prognostic and climate data. Necessary to create tools to automatic selection natural disasters through all integrated data; notification decision-makers about arising natural hazards - software agent; provision of information in a compact form for the decision-makers; assessment of possible damage and costs to the preventive measures; providing information on the impacts of environment on economic facilities and recommendations for decision-making; the use of maps, diagrams, tables for reporting. Tools for automatic selection designed for identification of natural phenomena based on the resources ESIMO and corresponding critical values of the indicators environment. The result of this module will be constantly updated database of critical situations of environment for each object or technological process. To operational notify and provide current information about natural hazards proposes using a software agent that is installed on the computer decision-makers, which is activated in case critical situations and provides a minimum of information. In the event of natural disaster software agent should be able to inform decision-makers about this, providing information on the current situation, and the possibility for more and detailed

  14. Systematic analysis of natural hazards along infrastructure networks using a GIS-tool for risk assessment (United States)

    Baruffini, Mirko


    Due to the topographical conditions in Switzerland, the highways and the railway lines are frequently exposed to natural hazards as rockfalls, debris flows, landslides, avalanches and others. With the rising incidence of those natural hazards, protection measures become an important political issue. However, they are costly, and maximal protection is most probably not economically feasible. Furthermore risks are distributed in space and time. Consequently, important decision problems to the public sector decision makers are derived. This asks for a high level of surveillance and preservation along the transalpine lines. Efficient protection alternatives can be obtained consequently considering the concept of integral risk management. Risk analysis, as the central part of risk management, has become gradually a generally accepted approach for the assessment of current and future scenarios (Loat & Zimmermann 2004). The procedure aims at risk reduction which can be reached by conventional mitigation on one hand and the implementation of land-use planning on the other hand: a combination of active and passive mitigation measures is applied to prevent damage to buildings, people and infrastructures. With a Geographical Information System adapted to run with a tool developed to manage Risk analysis it is possible to survey the data in time and space, obtaining an important system for managing natural risks. As a framework, we adopt the Swiss system for risk analysis of gravitational natural hazards (BUWAL 1999). It offers a complete framework for the analysis and assessment of risks due to natural hazards, ranging from hazard assessment for gravitational natural hazards, such as landslides, collapses, rockfalls, floodings, debris flows and avalanches, to vulnerability assessment and risk analysis, and the integration into land use planning at the cantonal and municipality level. The scheme is limited to the direct consequences of natural hazards. Thus, we develop a

  15. Logistic regression applied to natural hazards: rare event logistic regression with replications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Guns


    Full Text Available Statistical analysis of natural hazards needs particular attention, as most of these phenomena are rare events. This study shows that the ordinary rare event logistic regression, as it is now commonly used in geomorphologic studies, does not always lead to a robust detection of controlling factors, as the results can be strongly sample-dependent. In this paper, we introduce some concepts of Monte Carlo simulations in rare event logistic regression. This technique, so-called rare event logistic regression with replications, combines the strength of probabilistic and statistical methods, and allows overcoming some of the limitations of previous developments through robust variable selection. This technique was here developed for the analyses of landslide controlling factors, but the concept is widely applicable for statistical analyses of natural hazards.

  16. From paper to Facebook, travelling trough the natural hazards divulgation (United States)

    Llasat-Botija, Montserrat; Llasat, Maria-Carmen


    and other applications like the webquests mainly focused on scholar population. This contribution starts from the analysis of the newspaper articles on natural hazards and climate change published between 1982 and 2007 by a Spanish journal (Llasat et al, 2009b) and analyzes the breakpoint produced on last years as a consequence of the introduction of news and newspapers in internet (digital, on-line information, and so on) and certain changes in the headlines philosophy. The contribution also shows a benchmarking about the application of the new tools in internet in relation to natural hazards. The last objective is to establish new and innovative ways to transfer the natural hazards knowledge to practitioners, to overpasses the short term interest in natural disasters during the non-crisis period, and to improve the disaster risk reduction approach following the Hyogo recommendations.

  17. Prioritization of natural phenomena hazards evaluations for CHG facilities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    GRAVES, C.E.


    Natural phenomena hazards (NPH) are unexpected acts of nature that pose a threat or danger to workers, the public or to the environment by potential damage to structures, systems and components (SSCs). Earthquakes, extreme winds (hurricane and tornado), flood, volcanic eruption, lightning strike, or extreme cold or heat are examples of NPH. This document outlines the method used to prioritize buildings for inspection following an NPH event and contains the priority list for CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc. (CHG) buildings. Once an NPH event occurs and the Hanford Emergency Operations Center (EOC) is activated, this document will be used by the EOC to assign building inspections for the trained evaluators, barring any information from the field

  18. Prioritization of natural phenomena hazards evaluations for CHG facilities

    CERN Document Server

    Graves, C E


    Natural phenomena hazards (NPH) are unexpected acts of nature that pose a threat or danger to workers, the public or to the environment by potential damage to structures, systems and components (SSCs). Earthquakes, extreme winds (hurricane and tornado), flood, volcanic eruption, lightning strike, or extreme cold or heat are examples of NPH. This document outlines the method used to prioritize buildings for inspection following an NPH event and contains the priority list for CH2M HILL Hanford Group, Inc. (CHG) buildings. Once an NPH event occurs and the Hanford Emergency Operations Center (EOC) is activated, this document will be used by the EOC to assign building inspections for the trained evaluators, barring any information from the field.

  19. "Bundle Data" Approach at GES DISC Targeting Natural Hazards (United States)

    Shie, C. L.; Shen, S.; Kempler, S. J.


    Severe natural phenomena such as hurricane, volcano, blizzard, flood and drought have the potential to cause immeasurable property damages, great socioeconomic impact, and tragic loss of human life. From searching to assessing the "Big", i.e., massive and heterogeneous scientific data (particularly, satellite and model products) in order to investigate those natural hazards, it has, however, become a daunting task for Earth scientists and applications researchers, especially during recent decades. The NASA Goddard Earth Sciences Data and Information Service Center (GES DISC) has served "Big" Earth science data, and the pertinent valuable information and services to the aforementioned users of diverse communities for years. In order to help and guide our users to online readily (i.e., with a minimum effort) acquire their requested data from our enormous resource at GES DISC for studying their targeted hazard/event, we have thus initiated a "Bundle Data" approach in 2014, first targeting the hurricane event/topic. We have recently worked on new topics such as volcano and blizzard. The "bundle data" of a specific hazard/event is basically a sophisticated integrated data package consisting of a series of proper datasets containing a group of relevant ("knowledge-based") data variables readily accessible to users via a system-prearranged table linking those data variables to the proper datasets (URLs). This online approach has been developed by utilizing a few existing data services such as Mirador as search engine; Giovanni for visualization; and OPeNDAP for data access, etc. The online "Data Cookbook" site at GES DISC is the current host for the "bundle data". We are now also planning on developing an "Automated Virtual Collection Framework" that shall eventually accommodate the "bundle data", as well as further improve our management in "Big Data".

  20. Bundle Data Approach at GES DISC Targeting Natural Hazards (United States)

    Shie, Chung-Lin; Shen, Suhung; Kempler, Steven J.


    Severe natural phenomena such as hurricane, volcano, blizzard, flood and drought have the potential to cause immeasurable property damages, great socioeconomic impact, and tragic loss of human life. From searching to assessing the Big, i.e., massive and heterogeneous scientific data (particularly, satellite and model products) in order to investigate those natural hazards, it has, however, become a daunting task for Earth scientists and applications researchers, especially during recent decades. The NASA Goddard Earth Sciences Data and Information Service Center (GES DISC) has served Big Earth science data, and the pertinent valuable information and services to the aforementioned users of diverse communities for years. In order to help and guide our users to online readily (i.e., with a minimum effort) acquire their requested data from our enormous resource at GES DISC for studying their targeted hazard event, we have thus initiated a Bundle Data approach in 2014, first targeting the hurricane event topic. We have recently worked on new topics such as volcano and blizzard. The bundle data of a specific hazard event is basically a sophisticated integrated data package consisting of a series of proper datasets containing a group of relevant (knowledge--based) data variables readily accessible to users via a system-prearranged table linking those data variables to the proper datasets (URLs). This online approach has been developed by utilizing a few existing data services such as Mirador as search engine; Giovanni for visualization; and OPeNDAP for data access, etc. The online Data Cookbook site at GES DISC is the current host for the bundle data. We are now also planning on developing an Automated Virtual Collection Framework that shall eventually accommodate the bundle data, as well as further improve our management in Big Data.

  1. Geophysics in the monitoring of natural hazards

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Arafin, S.


    Natural disasters such as earthquakes, floods, tsunamis, landslides and volcanic eruptions strike every year, killing thousands of people and destroying property worth billions of dollars. Some of these can be a surprise like the 2004 Asian Tsunami. Earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and landslides are usually grouped into what are termed 'geo-hazards'. Because mud volcanoes do not pose any serious threat to human life and property, they are the least studied of all geo-hazards. However, the 1997 explosive eruption of the Piparo mud volcano in Trinidad, West Indies caught many scientists and planners by surprise. It was the strongest eruption of a mud volcano ever recorded, causing extensive damage to the small town of Piparo. A description of the 1997 eruption of the Piparo mud volcano and the associated land deformation, together with a three-dimensional gravity modeling of the gravitational anomaly of the nearby Tabaquite mud volcano have been presented. From the modeling, the geometry of the mud volcano has been deciphered, and it has been shown that a large, dynamic density contrast exists at the Tabaquite volcano. The existence of a large dynamic density contrast indicates that the gravity method can be used as a potential tool for monitoring mud volcanoes. (author)

  2. Natural Hazard Preparedness in an Auckland Community: Child and Community Perceptions (United States)

    Bolton, Patricia; Dirks, Kim; Neuwelt, Pat


    Community engagement in natural hazard preparedness is crucial to ensure sustainable initiatives. Children are important members of communities, and can actively contribute to community preparedness. This article presents research undertaken with 11- to 12-year-old students from a school in Auckland, New Zealand, and leaders associated with the…

  3. Wicked Problems in Natural Hazard Assessment and Mitigation (United States)

    Stein, S.; Steckler, M. S.; Rundle, J. B.; Dixon, T. H.


    Social scientists have defined "wicked" problems that are "messy, ill-defined, more complex than we fully grasp, and open to multiple interpretations based on one's point of view... No solution to a wicked problem is permanent or wholly satisfying, which leaves every solution open to easy polemical attack." These contrast with "tame" problems in which necessary information is available and solutions - even if difficult and expensive - are straightforward to identify and execute. Updating the U.S.'s aging infrastructure is a tame problem, because what is wrong and how to fix it are clear. In contrast, addressing climate change is a wicked problem because its effects are uncertain and the best strategies to address them are unclear. An analogous approach can be taken to natural hazard problems. In tame problems, we have a good model of the process, good information about past events, and data implying that the model should predict future events. In such cases, we can make a reasonable assessment of the hazard that can be used to develop mitigation strategies. Earthquake hazard mitigation for San Francisco is a relatively tame problem. We understand how the earthquakes result from known plate motions, have information about past earthquakes, and have geodetic data implying that future similar earthquakes will occur. As a result, it is straightforward to develop and implement mitigation strategies. However, in many cases, hazard assessment and mitigation is a wicked problem. How should we prepare for a great earthquake on plate boundaries where tectonics favor such events but we have no evidence that they have occurred and hence how large they may be or how often to expect them? How should we assess the hazard within plates, for example in the New Madrid seismic zone, where large earthquakes have occurred but we do not understand their causes and geodetic data show no strain accumulating? How can we assess the hazard and make sensible policy when the recurrence of

  4. Probabilistic disaggregation model with application to natural hazard risk assessment of portfolios

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Custer, Rocco; Nishijima, Kazuyoshi

    In natural hazard risk assessment, a resolution mismatch between hazard data and aggregated exposure data is often observed. A possible solution to this issue is the disaggregation of exposure data to match the spatial resolution of hazard data. Disaggregation models available in literature...... disaggregation model that considers the uncertainty in the disaggregation, taking basis in the scaled Dirichlet distribution. The proposed probabilistic disaggregation model is applied to a portfolio of residential buildings in the Canton Bern, Switzerland, subject to flood risk. Thereby, the model is verified...... are usually deterministic and make use of auxiliary indicator, such as land cover, to spatially distribute exposures. As the dependence between auxiliary indicator and disaggregated number of exposures is generally imperfect, uncertainty arises in disaggregation. This paper therefore proposes a probabilistic...

  5. Natural radioactivity level and radiological hazard assessment of commonly used building material in Xining, China

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shigang Chao; Xinwei Lu; Mengmeng Zhang; Long Pang


    Natural radioactivity of the commonly used building materials in Xining of China was measured using gamma-ray spectrometer system comprising a NaI(Tl) detector. Radioactivity concentrations of 226 Ra, 232 Th and 40 K in the studied samples range from 11.6 to 120.6, 10.2 to 107.1 and 228.0 to 1,036.2 Bq kg -1 , respectively. The concentrations for these natural radionuclides were compared with the reported data of other countries and the mean value for soil. Radium equivalent activity, indoor air absorbed dose rate, annual effective dose rate as well as external and internal hazard indices were calculated to assess radiological hazards for people living in dwelling made of the building materials. The radiological hazard assessment results show that the studied building materials, except for some aerated concrete block samples, are safe for use in construction of dwellings in the study area and do not pose any significant source of radiation hazard. (author)

  6. Conceptualizing community resilience to natural hazards – the emBRACE framework

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Kruse


    Full Text Available The level of community is considered to be vital for building disaster resilience. Yet, community resilience as a scientific concept often remains vaguely defined and lacks the guiding characteristics necessary for analysing and enhancing resilience on the ground. The emBRACE framework of community resilience presented in this paper provides a heuristic analytical tool for understanding, explaining and measuring community resilience to natural hazards. It was developed in an iterative process building on existing scholarly debates, on empirical case study work in five countries and on participatory consultation with community stakeholders where the framework was applied and ground-tested in different contexts and for different hazard types. The framework conceptualizes resilience across three core domains: (i resources and capacities, (ii actions and (iii learning. These three domains are conceptualized as intrinsically conjoined within a whole. Community resilience is influenced by these integral elements as well as by extra-community forces comprising disaster risk governance and thus laws, policies and responsibilities on the one hand and on the other, the general societal context, natural and human-made disturbances and system change over time. The framework is a graphically rendered heuristic, which through application can assist in guiding the assessment of community resilience in a systematic way and identifying key drivers and barriers of resilience that affect any particular hazard-exposed community.

  7. Natural hazards, vulnerability and structural resilience: tsunamis and industrial tanks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ahmed Mebarki


    Full Text Available The paper presents an integrated framework which deals with natural hazards (tsunamis, physical vulnerability modelling, risk of failure for industrial structures (metal structures and structural resilience provided by plastic adaptation. Simplified models are proposed to describe the run-up and wave height attenuation in case of tsunamis. The results are calibrated in the case of important tsunamis having taken place in Asian region. The mechanical vulnerability of cylindrical metal tanks erected near the shoreline is also investigated. The fragility curves are then developed in order to describe the multimodal failure: overturning, rupture of anchorages and sliding, buoyancy, excessive bending effects or buckling. Corresponding fragility curves are developed under various conditions: height of tsunami waves, filling ratios and service conditions of the tanks, friction tank/ground as well as dimensions effects. Probabilistic description of the natural hazard and the fragility curves are presented. Sensitivity analysis is also performed in order to investigate the effect of various governing parameters. Furthermore, resilience concepts and metrics are proposed. Theoretical description of the damages and post-disaster recovery functions are discussed: plastic adaptation as well as elastic and plastic attractors.

  8. Polution of basic natural resources with hazardous matters

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pejanović Ljubo


    Full Text Available The paper analyzes conceptual guidelines and a multidimensional approach to the thematic of agriculture as a land property with rich and available natural resources, which are characterized by their specifics. Specifics of natural resources are characterized by renewable and non-renewable contents without which life is impossible, and these basic contents are land, air and water. In addition, agrarians and agriculture have natural riches in their possession, out of which food for living creatures on the planet is produced. Natural resources are the contents of agrarians and with every pollution, and thus destruction of natural resources, it damages and destroys sustainability of both natural resources and the sustainability of agriculture with its content of living creatures and plants on which life and survival on this planet depend on. Any pollution, especially from hazardous substances and excessive treatment from the air and ground, causes damage, destruction and loss of life which is contained by living creatures and plant life, a prerequisite for sustainable development and the survival on Earth. The problem and aim of this paper is to point out and prove a phenomenon of the modern world, which poses a threat to the survival of natural resources, and thus life to living things and plant life on Earth. However, the aforementioned phenomenon is not a much known one, it's only known to a shortlist of scientists and theoreticians, while the general public is not aware of the mentioned and doesn't even assume the consequences of the threat.

  9. A landslide on a mudslide? Natural hazards and the right to life under the European Convention of Human Rights

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lauta, Kristian Cedervall; Rytter, Jens Elo


    This paper investigates the protection of individuals’ lives against natural hazards under the European Convention on Human Rights. In 2008, the European Court of Human Rights decided to include natural hazards in a well-established doctrine developed to protect individuals from life-threatening ...

  10. Remote Sensing and Geographic Information System (GIS) Technologies for Natural Hazard Risk Site Detection

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wenzel, H.


    Satellite imageries and digital elevation data of Turkey are investigated for detecting sites prone to natural hazards. Digital image processing methods used to enhance satellite data and to produce morphometric maps in order to contribute to the detection of causal factors related to landslides, local site conditions influencing and/or experiencing earthquake damage intensity or those of tsunami and storm surge hazard sites at the coasts

  11. Preparing our Workforce: Discussing Traditional and Non-Traditional Geoscience Careers - Natural hazard risk (United States)

    Castaldi, A.


    Many young people interested in science think that their only professional opportunities lie within academia or in some government sponsored project. The private sector is often dismissed as not providing the opportunities to a natural scientist or at least an opportunity where they can make a difference. The threat of natural disasters and in the rise of economic losses caused by these disasters as well as the potential problems brought about by climate change have opened up a number of opportunities for the natural scientist. The insurance industry and reinsurance industry is one industry looking for natural scientists and structural engineers. The insurance industry's largest singular threat comes from the risks caused by geological or atmospheric hazards. Over the last decade more and more scientists have used their seismological, hydrological, or weather related knowledge to develop new tools and technology to identify and estimate the economic and social impact due to these natural events. The insurance and reinsurance industry were one of the first industries to call attention to the risk posed by climate change. Our goal is to reduce losses and the cost to insure these losses. Our work starts with the hazard. Hazard identification is one of the best methods for reducing loss nevertheless not all areas of the world have the ability to identify these hazards. Swiss Re transforms science into application. As an example most of the world does not have flood maps to help consumers and policymakers decide which locations are highly exposed and which are not. Swiss Re used a decade of learning to develop a global set of flood maps that identifies the 100 year and 500 year flood zones. To an emerging market these maps will add them in their zoning and building considerations. Academia is a noble profession and the work completed within the university walls is the basis for what we do. Nevertheless the private sector has the ability to use this knowledge and apply

  12. Fourth DOE Natural Phenomena Hazards Mitigation Conference: Proceedings. Volume 1

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)


    This conference allowed an interchange in the natural phenomena area among designers, safety professionals, and managers. The papers presented in Volume I of the proceedings are from sessions I - VIII which cover the general topics of: DOE standards, lessons learned and walkdowns, wind, waste tanks, ground motion, testing and materials, probabilistic seismic hazards, risk assessment, base isolation and energy dissipation, and lifelines and floods. Individual papers are indexed separately. (GH)

  13. Three-dimensional displays for natural hazards analysis, using classified Landsat Thematic Mapper digital data and large-scale digital elevation models (United States)

    Butler, David R.; Walsh, Stephen J.; Brown, Daniel G.


    Methods are described for using Landsat Thematic Mapper digital data and digital elevation models for the display of natural hazard sites in a mountainous region of northwestern Montana, USA. Hazard zones can be easily identified on the three-dimensional images. Proximity of facilities such as highways and building locations to hazard sites can also be easily displayed. A temporal sequence of Landsat TM (or similar) satellite data sets could also be used to display landscape changes associated with dynamic natural hazard processes.

  14. Current status and issues of external event PSA for extreme natural hazards after Fukushima accident

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Choi, In-Kil; Hahm, Daegi; Kim, Min Kyu


    Extreme external events is emerged as significant risk contributor to the nuclear power plants after Fukushima Daiichi accident due to the catastrophic earthquake followed by great tsunami greater than a design basis. This accident shows that the extreme external events have the potential to simultaneously affect redundant and diverse safety systems and thereby induce common cause failure or common cause initiators. The probabilistic risk assessment methodology has been used for the risk assessment and safety improvement against the extreme natural hazards. The earthquake and tsunami hazard is an important issue for the nuclear industry in Korea. In this paper, the role and application of probabilistic safety assessment for the post Fukushima action will be introduced. For the evaluation of the extreme natural hazard, probabilistic seismic and tsunami hazard analysis is being performed for the safety enhancement. The research activity on the external event PSA and its interim results will be introduced with the issues to be solved in the future for the reliability enhancement of the risk analysis results. (authors)

  15. The cost of karst subsidence and sinkhole collapse in the United States compared with other natural hazards (United States)

    Weary, David J.


    Rocks with potential for karst formation are found in all 50 states. Damage due to karst subsidence and sinkhole collapse is a natural hazard of national scope. Repair of damage to buildings, highways, and other infrastructure represents a significant national cost. Sparse and incomplete data show that the average cost of karst-related damages in the United States over the last 15 years is estimated to be at least $300,000,000 per year and the actual total is probably much higher. This estimate is lower than the estimated annual costs for other natural hazards; flooding, hurricanes and cyclonic storms, tornadoes, landslides, earthquakes, or wildfires, all of which average over $1 billion per year. Very few state organizations track karst subsidence and sinkhole damage mitigation costs; none occurs at the Federal level. Many states discuss the karst hazard in their State hazard mitigation plans, but seldom include detailed reports of subsidence incidents or their mitigation costs. Most State highway departments do not differentiate karst subsidence or sinkhole collapse from other road repair costs. Amassing of these data would raise the estimated annual cost considerably. Information from insurance organizations about sinkhole damage claims and payouts is also not readily available. Currently there is no agency with a mandate for developing such data. If a more realistic estimate could be made, it would illuminate the national scope of this hazard and make comparison with costs of other natural hazards more realistic.

  16. Assessment of natural radioactivity and radiation hazard indices in different soil samples from Assiut governorate

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Issa, S.A.M.; Uosif, M.A.M.; Hefni, M.A.; El-Kamel, A.H; Nesreen, A.A.


    Natural radioactive materials under certain conditions can reach hazard radiological levels. So, it becomes necessary to study the natural radioactivity levels in soil to assess the dose for the population in order to know the health risks and to have a baseline for future changes in the environmental radioactivity due to human activities. Determine the radioactivity concentration of 226 Ra, 232 Th and 40 K in surface and 20 cm soil samples collected beside Assiut fertilizer plant, Assiut government in south Upper Egypt, to assess their contribution to the external dose exposure. The contents of natural radionuclides 226 Ra, 232 Th and 40 K were measured in investigated samples by using gamma spectrometry [NaI (Tl) 3”x 3”]. The total absorbed dose rate, annual effective dose rate, radium equivalent, excess lifetime cancer risk and the external hazard index, which resulted from the natural radionuclides in soil, were calculated

  17. Natural hazards in Goma and the surrounding villages, East African Rift System (United States)

    Balagizi, Charles M.; Kies, Antoine; Kasereka, Marcellin M.; Tedesco, Dario; Yalire, Mathieu M.; McCausland, Wendy A.


    The city of Goma and its surrounding villages (Democratic Republic of the Congo, DRC) are among the world’s most densely populated regions strongly affected by volcanic hazards. In 2002, Nyiragongo volcano erupted destroying 10–15% of Goma and forced a mass evacuation of the population. Hence, the ~ 1.5 million inhabitants of Goma and Gisenyi (Rwanda) continue to live with the threat of new lava flows and other eruptive hazards from this volcano. The current network of fractures extends from Nyiragongo summit to Goma and continues beneath Lake Kivu, which gives rise to the fear that an eruption could even produce an active vent within the center of Goma or within the lake. A sub-lacustrine volcanic eruption with vents in the floor of the main basin and/or Kabuno Bay of Lake Kivu could potentially release about 300 km3 of carbon dioxide (CO2) and 60 km3 of methane (CH4) dissolved in its deep waters that would be catastrophic to populations (~ 2.5 million people) along the lake shores. For the time being, ongoing hazards related to Nyiragongo and Nyamulagira volcanoes silently kill people and animals, slowly destroy the environment, and seriously harm the health of the population. They include mazuku (CO2-rich locations where people often die of asphyxiation), the highly fluoridated surface and ground waters, and other locally neglected hazards. The volcanic gas plume causes poor air quality and acid rain, which is commonly used for drinking water. Given the large number of people at risk and the continued movement of people to Goma and the surrounding villages, there is an urgent need for a thorough natural hazards assessment in the region. This paper presents a general view of natural hazards in the region around Goma based on field investigations, CO2 measurements in mazuku, and chemistry data for Lake Kivu, rivers and rainwater. The field investigations and the datasets are used in conjunction with extremely rich-historical (1897–2000) and

  18. Multi-Hazard Interactions in Guatemala (United States)

    Gill, Joel; Malamud, Bruce D.


    In this paper, we combine physical and social science approaches to develop a multi-scale regional framework for natural hazard interactions in Guatemala. The identification and characterisation of natural hazard interactions is an important input for comprehensive multi-hazard approaches to disaster risk reduction at a regional level. We use five transdisciplinary evidence sources to organise and populate our framework: (i) internationally-accessible literature; (ii) civil protection bulletins; (iii) field observations; (iv) stakeholder interviews (hazard and civil protection professionals); and (v) stakeholder workshop results. These five evidence sources are synthesised to determine an appropriate natural hazard classification scheme for Guatemala (6 hazard groups, 19 hazard types, and 37 hazard sub-types). For a national spatial extent (Guatemala), we construct and populate a "21×21" hazard interaction matrix, identifying 49 possible interactions between 21 hazard types. For a sub-national spatial extent (Southern Highlands, Guatemala), we construct and populate a "33×33" hazard interaction matrix, identifying 112 possible interactions between 33 hazard sub-types. Evidence sources are also used to constrain anthropogenic processes that could trigger natural hazards in Guatemala, and characterise possible networks of natural hazard interactions (cascades). The outcomes of this approach are among the most comprehensive interaction frameworks for national and sub-national spatial scales in the published literature. These can be used to support disaster risk reduction and civil protection professionals in better understanding natural hazards and potential disasters at a regional scale.

  19. Protecting against natural hazards - Information seeking behaviour in anticipation of severe weather events

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jeuring, Jelmer


    Protection against natural hazards - Information seeking behaviour in anticipation of severe weather events Severe weather events can have considerable impact on society, including tourism organisations and tourists. Providing accurate and timely information about possible risks due to environmental

  20. Safeguarding Cultural Heritage against Climate Change and Natural Hazards through Stakeholder Involvement (United States)

    de Wit, Rosmarie; Zuvela-Aloise, Maja; Hollosi, Brigitta; Anders, Ivonne; Höfler, Angelika; Boi, Silvia; Resta, Vanni; Patrikakis, Charalampos


    Europe's cultural heritage is among the richest in the world, and draws millions of visitors to archeological sites, museums, monuments, castles, and other sites each year. The protection and conservation of European heritage is of utmost importance for our society, not only in order to preserve the European cultural identity, but also because cultural heritage is a wealth creator bringing tourism-related business opportunities on which many communities depend. However, Europe's heritage assets are extremely exposed to climate change and natural hazards, which threatens their integrity and may compromise their value. The goal of the STORM (Safeguarding Cultural Heritage through Technical and Organisational Management) project is to provide critical decision-making tools to European cultural heritage stakeholders affected by climate change and natural hazards. Here, the STORM project will be presented with a focus on climate change and natural hazard risk communication to the involved stakeholders. However, climate change communication is not a one-way process, and discussions with stakeholders are necessary to identify their specific needs. Hence, the STORM concept is tested through pilot site studies in five different countries: the Diocletian Baths in Rome, Italy; the Mellor Heritage site, Manchester, UK; the Roman Ruins of Tróia, Portugal; the Historical Centre of Rethymno on Crete, Greece and Ephesus, Izmir, Turkey. Furthermore, the past and future climatic conditions at the project's pilot sites are analysed in terms of mean state and extreme events (for example temperature and precipitation changes evident from observations and climate scenarios), which will be discussed with regard to their relevance for the local cultural heritage protection based on discussions with the stakeholders.

  1. An overview of natural hazard impacts to railways and urban transportation systems (United States)

    Bíl, Michal; Nezval, Vojtěch; Bílová, Martina; Andrášik, Richard; Kubeček, Jan


    We present an overview and two case studies of natural hazard impacts on rail transportation systems in the Czech Republic. Flooding, landsliding, heavy snowfall, windstorms and glaze (black ice) are the most common natural processes which occur in this region. Whereas flooding and landsliding usually cause direct damage to the transportation infrastructure, other hazards predominantly cause indirect losses. Railway and urban tramline networks are almost fully dependent on electricity which is provided by a system of overhead lines (electric lines above the tracks). These lines are extremely susceptible to formation of glaze which blocks conduction of electric current. A December 2014 glaze event caused significant indirect losses in the largest Czech cities and railways due to the above-mentioned process. Details of this event will be provided during the presentation. Windstorms usually cause tree falls which can affect overhead lines and physically block railway tracks. Approximately 30 % of the Czech railway network is closer than 50 m from the nearest forest. This presents significant potential for transport interruption due to falling trees. Complicated legal relations among the owners of the plots of land along railways, the environment (full-grown trees and related habitat), and the railway administrator are behind many traffic interruptions due to falling trees. We have registered 2040 tree falls between 2012 and 2015 on the railway network. A model of the fallen tree hazard was created for the entire Czech railway network. Both above-mentioned case studies provide illustrative examples of the increased fragility of the modern transportation systems which fully rely on electricity. Natural processes with a low destructive power are thereby able to cause network wide service cut-offs.

  2. The value of knowing better - Losses from natural hazards (United States)

    Mysiak, J.; Galarraga, I.,; Garrido, A.; Interwies, E.; van Bers, C.; Vandenberghe, V.; Farinosi, F.; Foudi, S.; Görlitz, S.; Hernández-Mora, N.; Gil, M.; Grambow, C.


    In a highly emotional speech delivered last year after a series of strikes, Julia Gilbert, the Australian PM, noted that Australia has watched in horror as day after day a new chapter in natural disaster history has been written. And so did the whole world. 2011 went on to become the costliest year in terms of natural hazard losses in the recent history, with the total costs topping 380 billion US dollars. Almost a half of the insured losses were caused by a single event - the Fukushima Dai'ichi nuclear power plant accident triggered by a tsunami that followed an earthquake of MW 6.6 (Richer 9.0) magnitude. The Fukushima disaster has taught a costly lesson, once again: What you least expect, happens. The estimates of losses inflicted by natural hazards are, to put it mildly, incomplete and hardly representative of the ripple effects on regional and global economy, and the wider effects on social fabric, wellbeing and ecosystems that are notoriously difficult to monetise. The knowledge of the full magnitude of losses is not an end in itself. The economics of disasters is an emerging academic field, struggling to uncover the patterns of vulnerability to natural hazards, and provide insights useful for designing effective disaster risk reduction measures and policies. Yet the costly lessons learned are often neglected. In this paper we analyse selected significantly damaging events caused by hydrometeorological and climatologic events (floods and droughts) in four river basins/countries: Ebro/Spain, Po/Italy, Weser/Germany and Scheldt/Flanders-Belgium. Our analysis is focussed on identifying the gaps in reported damage estimates, and conducting additional original research and assessment that contribute to filling those gaps. In the case of drought, all the reference cases except the Ebro refer to the exceptionally hot and dry summer 2003. The drought event examined in the Ebro river basin is the prolonged period of deficient precipitation between 2004 and 2008. The

  3. Evaluation of natural phenomena hazards as part of safety assessments for nuclear facilities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kot, C.A.; Hsieh, B.J.; Srinivasan, M.G.; Shin, Y.W.


    The continued operation of existing US Department of Energy (DOE) nuclear facilities and laboratories requires a safety reassessment based on current criteria and guidelines. This also includes evaluations for the effects of Natural Phenomena Hazards (NPH), for which these facilities may not have been designed. The NPH evaluations follow the requirements of DOE Order 5480.28, Natural Phenomena Hazards Mitigation (1993) which establishes NPH Performance Categories (PCs) for DOE facilities and associated target probabilistic performance goals. These goals are expressed as the mean annual probability of exceedance of acceptable behavior for structures, systems and components (SSCs) subjected to NPH effects. The assignment of an NPH Performance Category is based on the overall hazard categorization (low, moderate, high) of a facility and on the function of an SSC under evaluation (DOE-STD-1021, 1992). Detailed guidance for the NPH analysis and evaluation criteria are also provided (DOE-STD-1020, 1994). These analyses can be very resource intensive, and may not be necessary for the evaluation of all SSCs in existing facilities, in particular for low hazard category facilities. An approach relying heavily on screening inspections, engineering judgment and use of NPH experience data (S. J. Eder et al., 1993), can minimize the analytical effort, give reasonable estimates of the NPH susceptibilities, and yield adequate information for an overall safety evaluation of the facility. In the following sections this approach is described in more detail and is illustrated by an application to a nuclear laboratory complex

  4. Risk Governance of Multiple Natural Hazards: Centralized versus Decentralized Approach in Europe (United States)

    Komendantova, Nadejda; Scolobig, Anna; Vinchon, Charlotte


    The multi-risk approach is a relatively new field and its definition includes the need to consider multiple hazards and vulnerabilities in their interdependency (Selva, 2013) and the current multi-hazards disasters, such as the 2011 Tohoku earthquake, tsunami and nuclear catastrophe, showed the need for a multi-risk approach in hazard mitigation and management. Our knowledge about multi-risk assessment, including studies from different scientific disciplines and developed assessment tools, is constantly growing (White et al., 2001). However, the link between scientific knowledge, its implementation and the results in terms of improved governance and decision-making have gained significantly less attention (IRGC, 2005; Kappes et al., 2012), even though the interest to risk governance, in general, has increased significantly during the last years (Verweiy and Thompson, 2006). Therefore, the key research question is how risk assessment is implemented and what is the potential for the implementation of a multi-risk approach in different governance systems across Europe. More precisely, how do the characteristics of risk governance, such as the degree of centralization versus decentralization, influence the implementation of a multi-risk approach. The methodology of this research includes comparative case study analysis of top-down and bottom-up interactions in governance in the city of Naples, (Italy), where the institutional landscape is marked by significant autonomy of Italian regions in decision-making processes for assessing the majority of natural risks, excluding volcanic, and in Guadeloupe, French West Indies, an overseas department of France, where the decision-making process is marked by greater centralization in decision making associated with a well established state governance within regions, delegated to the prefect and decentralised services of central ministries. The research design included documentary analysis and extensive empirical work involving

  5. 78 FR 53190 - Pipeline Safety: Notice to Operators of Hazardous Liquid and Natural Gas Pipelines of a Recall on... (United States)


    ... DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration [Docket No. PHMSA-2013-0185] Pipeline Safety: Notice to Operators of Hazardous Liquid and Natural Gas Pipelines of a Recall on Leak Repair Clamps Due to Defective Seal AGENCY: Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety...

  6. Assessment of natural radioactivity levels and radiation hazards due to cement industry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    El-Taher, A.; Abdel Halim, A.S.


    The cement industry is considered as one of the basic industries that plays an important role in the national economy of developing countries. Activity concentrations of 226 Ra, 232 Th and 40 K in Assiut cement and other local cement types from different Egyptian factories has been measured by using γ-ray spectrometry. From the measured γ-ray spectra, specific activities were determined. The measured activity concentrations for these natural radionuclides were compared with the reported data for other countries. The average values obtained for 226 Ra, 232 Th and 40 K activity concentration in different types of cement are lower than the corresponding global values reported in UNSCEAR publications. The obtained results show that the averages of radiation hazard parameters for Assiut cement factory are lower than the acceptable level of 370 Bq kg -1 for radium equivalent Ra eq , 1 for level index Iγr, the external hazard index Hex ≤1 and 59 (nGy h -1 ) for absorbed dose rate. The manufacturing operation reduces the radiation hazard parameters. Cement does not pose a significant radiological hazard when used for construction of buildings.

  7. ThinkHazard!: an open-source, global tool for understanding hazard information (United States)

    Fraser, Stuart; Jongman, Brenden; Simpson, Alanna; Nunez, Ariel; Deparday, Vivien; Saito, Keiko; Murnane, Richard; Balog, Simone


    Rapid and simple access to added-value natural hazard and disaster risk information is a key issue for various stakeholders of the development and disaster risk management (DRM) domains. Accessing available data often requires specialist knowledge of heterogeneous data, which are often highly technical and can be difficult for non-specialists in DRM to find and exploit. Thus, availability, accessibility and processing of these information sources are crucial issues, and an important reason why many development projects suffer significant impacts from natural hazards. The World Bank's Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR) is currently developing a new open-source tool to address this knowledge gap: ThinkHazard! The main aim of the ThinkHazard! project is to develop an analytical tool dedicated to facilitating improvements in knowledge and understanding of natural hazards among non-specialists in DRM. It also aims at providing users with relevant guidance and information on handling the threats posed by the natural hazards present in a chosen location. Furthermore, all aspects of this tool will be open and transparent, in order to give users enough information to understand its operational principles. In this presentation, we will explain the technical approach behind the tool, which translates state-of-the-art probabilistic natural hazard data into understandable hazard classifications and practical recommendations. We will also demonstrate the functionality of the tool, and discuss limitations from a scientific as well as an operational perspective.

  8. Assessing global exposure and vulnerability towards natural hazards: the Disaster Risk Index

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. Peduzzi


    Full Text Available This paper presents a model of factors influencing levels of human losses from natural hazards at the global scale, for the period 1980–2000. This model was designed for the United Nations Development Programme as a building stone of the Disaster Risk Index (DRI, which aims at monitoring the evolution of risk. Assessing what countries are most at risk requires considering various types of hazards, such as droughts, floods, cyclones and earthquakes. Before assessing risk, these four hazards were modelled using GIS and overlaid with a model of population distribution in order to extract human exposure. Human vulnerability was measured by crossing exposure with selected socio-economic parameters. The model evaluates to what extent observed past losses are related to population exposure and vulnerability. Results reveal that human vulnerability is mostly linked with country development level and environmental quality. A classification of countries is provided, as well as recommendations on data improvement for future use of the model.

  9. Challenge theme 6: Natural hazard risks in the Borderlands: Chapter 8 in United States-Mexican Borderlands: Facing tomorrow's challenges through USGS science (United States)

    Page, William R.; Parcher, Jean W.; Stefanov, Jim


    Natural hazards such as earthquakes, landslides and debris flows, wildfires, hurricanes, and intense storm-induced flash floods threaten communities to varying degrees all along the United States–Mexican border. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) collaborates with Federal, State, and local agencies to minimize the effects of natural hazards by providing timely, unbiased science information to emergency response officials, resource managers, and the public to help reduce property damage, injury, and loss of life. The USGS often mobilizes response efforts during and after a natural hazard event to provide technical and scientific counsel on recovery and response, and it has a long history of deploying emergency response teams to major disasters in both domestic and international locations. This chapter describes the challenges of natural hazards in the United States–Mexican border region and the capabilities of the USGS in the fields of hazard research, monitoring, and assessment, as well as preventative mitigation and post-disaster response.

  10. Seismic‐hazard forecast for 2016 including induced and natural earthquakes in the central and eastern United States (United States)

    Petersen, Mark D.; Mueller, Charles; Moschetti, Morgan P.; Hoover, Susan M.; Llenos, Andrea L.; Ellsworth, William L.; Michael, Andrew J.; Rubinstein, Justin L.; McGarr, Arthur F.; Rukstales, Kenneth S.


    The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has produced a one‐year (2016) probabilistic seismic‐hazard assessment for the central and eastern United States (CEUS) that includes contributions from both induced and natural earthquakes that are constructed with probabilistic methods using alternative data and inputs. This hazard assessment builds on our 2016 final model (Petersen et al., 2016) by adding sensitivity studies, illustrating hazard in new ways, incorporating new population data, and discussing potential improvements. The model considers short‐term seismic activity rates (primarily 2014–2015) and assumes that the activity rates will remain stationary over short time intervals. The final model considers different ways of categorizing induced and natural earthquakes by incorporating two equally weighted earthquake rate submodels that are composed of alternative earthquake inputs for catalog duration, smoothing parameters, maximum magnitudes, and ground‐motion models. These alternatives represent uncertainties on how we calculate earthquake occurrence and the diversity of opinion within the science community. In this article, we also test sensitivity to the minimum moment magnitude between M 4 and M 4.7 and the choice of applying a declustered catalog with b=1.0 rather than the full catalog with b=1.3. We incorporate two earthquake rate submodels: in the informed submodel we classify earthquakes as induced or natural, and in the adaptive submodel we do not differentiate. The alternative submodel hazard maps both depict high hazard and these are combined in the final model. Results depict several ground‐shaking measures as well as intensity and include maps showing a high‐hazard level (1% probability of exceedance in 1 year or greater). Ground motions reach 0.6g horizontal peak ground acceleration (PGA) in north‐central Oklahoma and southern Kansas, and about 0.2g PGA in the Raton basin of Colorado and New Mexico, in central Arkansas, and in

  11. Geophysical Tools, Challenges and Perspectives Related to Natural Hazards, Climate Change and Food Security (United States)

    Fucugauchi, J. U.


    In the coming decades a changing climate and natural hazards will likely increase the vulnerability of agricultural and other food production infrastructures, posing increasing treats to industrialized and developing economies. While food security concerns affect us globally, the huge differences among countries in stocks, population size, poverty levels, economy, technologic development, transportation, health care systems and basic infrastructure will pose a much larger burden on populations in the developing and less developed world. In these economies, increase in the magnitude, duration and frequency of droughts, floods, hurricanes, rising sea levels, heat waves, thunderstorms, freezing events and other phenomena will pose severe costs on the population. For this presentation, we concentrate on a geophysical perspective of the problems, tools available, challenges and short and long-term perspectives. In many instances, a range of natural hazards are considered as unforeseen catastrophes, which suddenly affect without warning, resulting in major losses. Although the forecasting capacity in the different situations arising from climate change and natural hazards is still limited, there are a range of tools available to assess scenarios and forecast models for developing and implementing better mitigation strategies and prevention programs. Earth observation systems, geophysical instrumental networks, satellite observatories, improved understanding of phenomena, expanded global and regional databases, geographic information systems, higher capacity for computer modeling, numerical simulations, etc provide a scientific-technical framework for developing strategies. Hazard prevention and mitigation programs will result in high costs globally, however major costs and challenges concentrate on the less developed economies already affected by poverty, famines, health problems, social inequalities, poor infrastructure, low life expectancy, high population growth

  12. The impact of natural hazard on critical infrastructure systems: definition of an ontology (United States)

    Dimauro, Carmelo; Bouchon, Sara; Frattini, Paolo; Giusto, Claudia


    According to the Council of the European Union Directive (2008), 'critical infrastructure' means an asset, system or part thereof which is essential for the maintenance of vital societal functions, health, safety, security, economic or social well-being of people, and the disruption or destruction of which would have a significant impact as a result of the failure to maintain those functions. Critical infrastructure networks are exposed to natural events, such as floods, storms, landslides, earthquakes, etc. Recent natural disasters show that socio-economic consequences can be very much aggravated by the impact on these infrastructures. Though, there is still a lack of a recognized approach or methodology to assess the vulnerability of critical infrastructure assets against natural threats. The difficulty to define such an approach is increased by the need to consider a very high number of natural events, which differ in nature, magnitude and probability, as well as the need to assess the vulnerability of a high variety of infrastructure assets (e.g. bridges, roads, tunnels, pipelines, etc.) To meet this challenge, the objective of the THREVI2 EU-CIPS project is to create a database linking the relationships between natural hazards and critical infrastructure assets. The query of the database will allow the end-users (critical infrastructure protection authorities and operators) to identify the relevant scenarios according to the own priorities and criteria. The database builds on an ontology optimized for the assessment of the impact of threats on critical infrastructures. The ontology aims at capturing the existing knowledge on natural hazards, critical infrastructures assets and their related vulnerabilities. Natural phenomena that can threaten critical infrastructures are classified as "events", and organized in a genetic-oriented hierarchy. The main attributes associated to each event are the probability, the magnitude and the "modus". The modus refers to the

  13. Daring the Foolish to Take Darwin Tests: The Ethical Double Bind of Betting On Natural Hazards (United States)

    Halpern, J. B.


    While couched in the framework of concentrating minds betting on natural hazards carries an ethical cost. When children dare each other to do risky things parents know that when such dares are taken harm frequently occurs. Giving those who claim that there is no hazard financial reasons to avoid ameliorative actions or to double down in support of their public stance requires a moral calculation. Challenging the conclusions of those who accept such bets while denying danger will lead them to attempt to save face by increasing risk to themselves or others. Thus such wagers, whether person to person or on betting markets, require balancing between alerting the opposing party and others to the risks of not taking action, the associated scientific consensus and the possible harmful outcomes of the bets themselves. This talk will describe strategies for minimizing potential harm while maximizing the instructive component of climate bets. Best practices include having the bet rest on a technical issue that can be authoritatively resolved in a short time. Unfortunately the nature of natural hazard risks makes it difficult to meet all of these criteria, but those making such bets should be aware of the ethical double bind

  14. Some aspects of risks and natural hazards in the rainfall variability space of Rwanda. (United States)

    Nduwayezu, Emmanuel; Derron, Marc-Henri; Jaboyedoff, Michel; Penna, Ivanna; Kanevski, Mikhaïl


    Rwanda is facing challenges related to its dispersed population and their density. Risk assessment for natural disasters is becoming important in order to reduce the extent and damages of natural disasters. Rwanda is a country with a diversity of landscapes. Its mountains and marshes have been considered as a water reserve, a forest and grazing reserve by the population (currently around 11 million). Due to geologic and climate conditions, the country is subject of different natural processes, in particular hydrological events (flooding and also landslides), but also earthquakes and volcanism, which the communities have to live with in the western part. In the last years, population expansion for land by clearing of forests and draining marshes, seems to be acting as an aggravating factor. Therefore, a risk assessment for rainfall related hazards requires a deep understanding of the precipitation patterns. Based on satellite image interpretation, historical reports of events, and the analysis of rainfalls variability mapping and probabilistic analyses of events, the aim of this case study is to produce an overview and a preliminary assessment of the hazards scenario in Rwanda.

  15. Marine Extremes and Natural Hazards: when the key is variability. (United States)

    Marone, Eduardo; Camargo, Ricardo; Salcedo Castro, Julio


    At EGU2013 we used the work we are conducting regarding marine extreme events and natural hazards to exploit the distance that separate the scientific community and the non academic society, trying to show where bridges need to be built an how an ethical behavior among the scientists needs to be in place to succeed. We concluded that our actions as scientists have not been the most appropriate in communicating outside the academy our results, particularly when our findings have to do with natural hazards which could contribute to loss of life and the environmental quality that sustains it. Even if one of the barriers that separate the academy from society is the "language", too cryptic even for a well educated (not scientific) citizen in many cases, we scientists complicated even more the problems when we stop worrying about some basic concepts regarding the scientific method once upon a time were teach at basic school levels, particularly concerning differences as accuracy and precision, or the concept of uncertainty and the errors which permeate any observation or scientific "prediction". Science teaching at basic levels was not lost, but changed in the XXth century, concentrating in the so many new advancements and abandoning classical but necessary learning processes just about how sciences is done and why. When studying marine extreme events, we use statistic, stochastic methods, deterministic analysis, logical and numerical modeling, etc. However, our results are still very far away of being accurate, while our precision, however is improving just a little, it is still far away of ideal. That appears to be somehow obvious if we look just the observed vs. the modeled data. Nevertheless, if we look not the absolute values of our results, but the "rhythm" of their variability and compare these cadences with the beats observed in nature, new patterns arose, and clues about how to act regarding natural hazards and extreme events became more clear. We are being

  16. Narrowing the Insurance Protection Gap: The important role of Natural Hazards Research (United States)

    Manghnani, V.


    The Insurance industry is a key component of the economic engine. It allows businesses to reduce uncertainty in their operations, and individuals to rebound from unanticipated events. A thriving insurance industry efficiently transfers risk from individuals and businesses to the capital markets. It allows society to function smoothly and fosters growth. In areas where the private insurance is not a viable option, the outcome is suboptimal - the society ends up carrying the burden. Higher insurance penetration increases disaster resiliency. The long term viability of an insurance product depends on the ability of the insurance provider to accurately assess risks, which is critical to pricing insurance and risk monitoring. Insurance payouts are typically incurred during extreme events, therefore the industry is very interested in extreme events research. There are several examples where the insurance industry has stepped away from a market or severely limited its appetite because of lack of data or proper understanding of the underlying risks - such as, flood. Further, the insurance Industry has seen a rising trend of natural hazard related losses over the past few decades. The trends have been particularly strong in hydro meteorological hazards. While a good part of this increasing trend can been explained by increase in exposures, there is also concern that underlying hazard landscape may be evolving. The industry would really benefit from research that identifies secular and long term trends in hydro-meteorological hazards, particularly in the extremes. Insight into non-stationarity in the climate system at a regional level would be very informative of risk management decisions. One can envision a scenario where in the industry stops insuring certain risk (such as storm surge), because of a lack of understanding of the trends in the underlying risk and a consequent poor performance record. In sum, the ability of the industry to assess complex and emerging natural

  17. Local government, political decentralisation and resilience to natural hazard-associated disasters


    Tselios, Vasileios; Tompkins, Emma


    Natural hazards affect development and can cause significant and long-term suffering for those affected. Research has shown that sustained long-term disaster preparedness combined with appropriate response and recovery are needed to deliver effective risk reductions. However, as the newly agreed Sendai framework recognises, this knowledge has not been translated into action. This research aims to contribute to our understanding of how to deliver longer term and sustained risk reduction by eva...

  18. Assessment of natural radioactivity and radiological hazards in building materials used in Yan'an, China. (United States)

    Lu, Xinwei; Li, Nan; Yang, Guang; Zhao, Caifeng


    The concentration of natural radionuclides in commonly used building materials collected from Yan'an, China, was determined using gamma ray spectroscopy with a NaI(Tl) detector. The activity concentration of ²²⁶Ra, ²³²Th, and ⁴⁰K in the studied building materials ranges from 9.4-73.1, 11.5-86.9, and 258.9-1,055.1 Bq kg⁻¹, respectively. The concentrations for these natural radionuclides were compared with the reported data of other countries and the world mean values for soil. The radium equivalent activity (Raeq), external hazard index (Hex), internal hazard index (Hin), indoor air absorbed dose rate, and annual effective dose rate due to natural radionuclides in samples were estimated to assess radiological hazards for people living in dwellings made of the studied building materials. The calculated Raeq values of all building materials (75.7-222.1 Bq kg⁻¹) are lower than the limit of 370 Bq kg⁻¹. The values of Hex and Hin are less than unity. The mean values of indoor air absorbed dose rates of all building materials (101.0 ± 14.1-177.0 ± 6.8 nGy h⁻¹) are higher than the world population-weighted average of 84 nGy h⁻¹, while the mean values of annual effective dose range from 0.50 ± 0.07-0.87 ± 0.03 mSv y⁻¹, which are lower than the recommended limit of 1 mSv y⁻¹. It is found that these materials may be used safely as construction materials and do not pose significant radiation hazards to inhabitants.

  19. The effect of natural disturbances on the risk from hydrogeomorphic hazards under climate change (United States)

    Scheidl, Christian; Thaler, Thomas; Seidl, Rupert; Rammer, Werner; Kohl, Bernhard; Markart, Gerhard


    Recent storm events in Austria show once more how floods, sediment transport processes and debris flows constitute a major threat in alpine regions with a high density of population and an increasing spatial development. As protection forests have a major control function on runoff and erosion, they directly affect the risk from such hydrogeomorphic processes. However, research on future climate conditions, with an expected increase of the global average surface temperature of 3-5°C by 2100, compared to the first decade of the 20th century, raises a number of open questions for a sustainable and improved hazard management in mountain forests. For Europe, for instance, a climate-induced increase in forest disturbances like wildfire, wind, and insect's outbreaks is highly likely for the coming decades. Especially in protection forests, future scenarios of such climate induced natural disturbances and their impact on the protective effect remain an unresolved issue. Combining methods from forestry, hydrology and geotechnical engineering our project uses an integral approach to simulate possible effects of natural disturbances on hydrogeomorphic hazards in the perspective of future protection forest developments. With the individual-based forest landscape and disturbance model (iLand) we conduct an ensemble of forest landscape simulations, assessing the impact of future changes in natural disturbance regimes in four selected torrential catchments. These catchments are situated in two different forest growth areas. Drainage rate simulations are based on the conceptual hydrological model (ZEMOKOST), whereas simulations of the effect of forest disturbances on hillslope erosion processes are conducted by the Distributed Hydrology Soil Vegetation Model (DHSVM). Beside process based simulations, we also emphasis to identify the risk perception and adaptive capacity to mitigate a probable loss of protection functions in forests. For this reason, a postal survey among

  20. The Atlas of Natural Hazards and Risks of Austria: first results for fluvial and pluvial floods (United States)

    Mergili, Martin; Tader, Andreas; Glade, Thomas; Neuhold, Clemens; Stiefelmeyer, Heinz


    Incoherent societal adaptation to natural processes results in significant losses every year. A better knowledge of the spatial and temporal distribution of hazards and risks, and of particular hot spots in a given region or period, is essential for reducing adverse impacts. Commonly, different hazard and risk estimations are performed within individual approaches based on tailor-made concepts. This works well as long as specific cases are considered. The advantage of such a procedure is that each individual hazard and risk is addressed in the best possible manner. The drawback, however, consists in the fact that the results differ significantly in terms of quality and accuracy and therefore cannot be compared. Hence, there is a need to develop a strategy and concept which uses similar data sources of equivalent quality in order to adequately analyze the different natural hazards and risks at broader scales. The present study is aiming to develop such a platform. The project Risk:ATlas focuses on the design of an atlas visualizing the most relevant natural hazards and, in particular, possible consequences for the entire territory of Austria. Available as a web-based tool and as a printed atlas, it is seen as a key tool to improve the basis for risk reduction, risk adaptation and risk transfer. The atlas is founded on those data sets available for the entire territory of Austria at a consistent resolution and quality. A 1 m resolution DEM and the official cadastre and building register represent the core, further data sets are employed according to the requirements for each natural hazard and risk. In this contribution, the methodology and the preliminary results for fluvial and pluvial floods and their consequences to buildings for three selected test areas in different types of landscapes (rural, urban and mountainous) are presented. Flooding depths expected for annualities of 30, 100 and 300 are derived from existing data sets for fluvial floods and are computed

  1. Bike Helmets and Black Riders: Experiential Approaches to Helping Students Understand Natural Hazard Assessment and Mitigation Issues (United States)

    Stein, S. A.; Kley, J.; Hindle, D.; Friedrich, A. M.


    Defending society against natural hazards is a high-stakes game of chance against nature, involving tough decisions. How should a developing nation allocate its budget between building schools for towns without ones or making existing schools earthquake-resistant? Does it make more sense to build levees to protect against floods, or to prevent development in the areas at risk? Would more lives be saved by making hospitals earthquake-resistant, or using the funds for patient care? These topics are challenging because they are far from normal experience, in that they involve rare events and large sums. To help students in natural hazard classes conceptualize them, we pose tough and thought-provoking questions about complex issues involved and explore them together via lectures, videos, field trips, and in-class and homework questions. We discuss analogous examples from the students' experiences, drawing on a new book "Playing Against Nature, Integrating Science and Economics to Mitigate Natural Hazards in an Uncertain World". Asking whether they wear bicycle helmets and why or why not shows the cultural perception of risk. Individual students' responses vary, and the overall results vary dramatically between the US, UK, and Germany. Challenges in hazard assessment in an uncertain world are illustrated by asking German students whether they buy a ticket on public transportation - accepting a known cost - or "ride black" - not paying but risking a heavy fine if caught. We explore the challenge of balancing mitigation costs and benefits via the question "If you were a student in Los Angeles, how much more would you pay in rent each month to live in an earthquake-safe building?" Students learn that interdisciplinary thinking is needed, and that due to both uncertainties and sociocultural factors, no unique or right strategies exist for a particular community, much the less all communities. However, we can seek robust policies that give sensible results given

  2. The hostel or the warehouse? Spatiotemporal exposure assessment for natural hazards (United States)

    Fuchs, S.; Keiler, M.; Zischg, A.


    A spatially explicit object-based temporal assessment of buildings and citizens exposed to natural hazards in Austria is presented, including elements at risk to river flooding, torrential flooding, and snow avalanches. It is shown that the repeatedly-stated assumption of increasing losses due to continued population growth and related increase in assets has to be opposed to the local development of building stock. While some regions have shown a clearly above-average increase in assets, other regions were characterised by a below-average development. This mirrors the topography of the country, but also the different economic activities. While hotels and hostels are extraordinary prone to mountain hazards, commercial buildings as well as buildings used for recreation purpose are considerably exposed to river flooding. Residential buildings have shown an average exposure, compared to the amount of buildings of this type in the overall building stock. In sum, around 5% of all buildings are exposed to mountain hazards, and around 9% to river flooding, with around 1% of the buildings stock being multi-exposed. It is shown that the dynamics of elements at risk exposed have a time lag once land use regulations are enforced, and it is concluded that an object-based assessment has clear advantages compared to the assessment using aggregated land use data.

  3. The Swiss Virtual Campus Project NAHRIS: Experiences from a Multidisciplinary E-Learning Project in the Natural Hazard and Risk Management Domain (United States)

    Lienert, Christophe; Bischof, Nicole; Hurni, Lorenz


    The overall goal of the Swiss Virtual Campus project Dealing with Natural Hazards and Risk (NAHRIS) is to create a common educational course program that compiles the most recent knowledge in the field of natural hazards and risk management. Several higher education institutes from all parts of Switzerland were involved in the realization of this…

  4. A review of multi-risk methodologies for natural hazards: Consequences and challenges for a climate change impact assessment. (United States)

    Gallina, Valentina; Torresan, Silvia; Critto, Andrea; Sperotto, Anna; Glade, Thomas; Marcomini, Antonio


    This paper presents a review of existing multi-risk assessment concepts and tools applied by organisations and projects providing the basis for the development of a multi-risk methodology in a climate change perspective. Relevant initiatives were developed for the assessment of multiple natural hazards (e.g. floods, storm surges, droughts) affecting the same area in a defined timeframe (e.g. year, season, decade). Major research efforts were focused on the identification and aggregation of multiple hazard types (e.g. independent, correlated, cascading hazards) by means of quantitative and semi-quantitative approaches. Moreover, several methodologies aim to assess the vulnerability of multiple targets to specific natural hazards by means of vulnerability functions and indicators at the regional and local scale. The overall results of the review show that multi-risk approaches do not consider the effects of climate change and mostly rely on the analysis of static vulnerability (i.e. no time-dependent vulnerabilities, no changes among exposed elements). A relevant challenge is therefore to develop comprehensive formal approaches for the assessment of different climate-induced hazards and risks, including dynamic exposure and vulnerability. This requires the selection and aggregation of suitable hazard and vulnerability metrics to make a synthesis of information about multiple climate impacts, the spatial analysis and ranking of risks, including their visualization and communication to end-users. To face these issues, climate impact assessors should develop cross-sectorial collaborations among different expertise (e.g. modellers, natural scientists, economists) integrating information on climate change scenarios with sectorial climate impact assessment, towards the development of a comprehensive multi-risk assessment process. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Natural radioactivity in soil samples of Yelagiri Hills, Tamil Nadu, India and the associated radiation hazards

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ravisankar, R.; Chandrasekaran, A.; Vijayagopal, P.; Venkatraman, B.; Senthilkumar, G.; Eswaran, P.; Rajalakshmi, A.


    The natural radioactivity of soils at Yelagiri hills has been studied in this paper. The radioactivities of 25 samples have been measured with a NaI(Tl) detector. The radioactivity concentrations of 238 U, 232 Th and 40 K ranged from ≤2.17 to 53.23, 13.54 to 89.89 and from 625.09 to 2207.3 Bq kg −1 , respectively. The measured activity concentrations for these radionuclides were compared with world average activity of soil. The average activity concentration of 232 Th in the present study is 1.19 times higher than world median value while the activity of 238 U and 40 K is found to be lower. In order to evaluate the radiological hazard of the natural radioactivity, the radium equivalent activity Ra eq , the absorbed dose rate D R , the annual effective dose rate and the external hazard index (H ex ) have been calculated and compared with the internationally approved values. The study provides background radioactivity concentrations in Yelagiri hills. - Highlights: ► Soil radioactivity is used for base line data in future impact assessment. ► We report the results of radiation hazard parameters in soils of Yelagiri hills. ► The level of the natural radiation in the studied area does not exceed the norm.

  6. HANZE: a pan-European database of exposure to natural hazards and damaging historical floods since 1870 (United States)

    Paprotny, Dominik; Morales-Nápoles, Oswaldo; Jonkman, Sebastiaan N.


    The influence of social and economic change on the consequences of natural hazards has been a matter of much interest recently. However, there is a lack of comprehensive, high-resolution data on historical changes in land use, population, or assets available to study this topic. Here, we present the Historical Analysis of Natural Hazards in Europe (HANZE) database, which contains two parts: (1) HANZE-Exposure with maps for 37 countries and territories from 1870 to 2020 in 100 m resolution and (2) HANZE-Events, a compilation of past disasters with information on dates, locations, and losses, currently limited to floods only. The database was constructed using high-resolution maps of present land use and population, a large compilation of historical statistics, and relatively simple disaggregation techniques and rule-based land use reallocation schemes. Data encompassed in HANZE allow one to "normalize" information on losses due to natural hazards by taking into account inflation as well as changes in population, production, and wealth. This database of past events currently contains 1564 records (1870-2016) of flash, river, coastal, and compound floods. The HANZE database is freely available at" target="_blank">

  7. Earth and water resources and hazards in Central America (United States)

    Cunningham, Charles G.; Fary, R.W.; Guffanti, Marianne; Laura, Della; Lee, M.P.; Masters, C.D.; Miller, R.L.; Quinones-Marques, Ferdinand; Peebles, R.W.; Reinemund, J.A.; Russ, D.P.


    Long-range economic development in Central America will depend in large part on production of indigenous mineral, energy, and water resources and on mitigation of the disastrous effects of geologic and hydrologic hazards such as landslides, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, and floods. The region has six world-class metal mines at present as well as additional evidence of widespread mineralization. Systematic investigations using modern mineral exploration techniques should reveal more mineral deposits suitable for development. Widespread evidence of lignite and geothermal resources suggests that intensive studies could identify producible energy sources in most Central American countries. Water supply and water quality vary greatly from country to country. Local problems of ground- and surface-water availability and of contamination create a need for systematic programs to provide better hydrologic data, capital improvements, and management. Disastrous earthquakes have destroyed or severely damaged many cities in Central America. Volcanic eruptions, landslides, mudflows, and floods have devastated most of the Pacific side of Central America at one time or another. A regional approach to earthquake, volcano, and flood-risk analysis and monitoring, using modern technology and concepts, would provide the facilities and means for acquiring knowledge necessary to reduce future losses. All Central American countries need to strengthen institutions and programs dealing with earth and water resources and natural hazards. Some of these needs may be satisfied through existing or pending projects and technical and economic assistance from U.S. or other sources. The need for a comprehensive study of the natural resources of Central America and the requirements for their development is evident. The U.S. Caribbean Basin Initiative offers both an excellent opportunity for a regional approach to these pervasive problems and an opportunity for international cooperation.

  8. Coordination of Individual and Organizational Planning for Natural Hazards (Invited) (United States)

    Krantz, D. H.


    Decision making consists of constructing or selecting a plan. This is true at many levels of decision making: individuals or households, small groups, larger organizations, and governments. In each case, plans are constructed or selected taking account of the decision maker's prioritized set of active goals and the decision maker's beliefs about the probability or the extent to which each goal will be attained through a given plan. Planning for mitigation of or response to natural hazards can be improved if the plans of the many decision makers at multiple levels are coordinated. Government planning should ideally be informed by knowledge about the plans of businesses and non-profit organizations as well as knowledge about individual, household, and neighborhood plans. Similarly, plans at the individual and organizational levels should be informed by knowledge of others' plans at the same and at higher and lower levels of aggregation. Coordination can be impaired by differences in goals, differences in beliefs about the instrumentality of plans toward given goals, and also by ignorance of others' goals and plans. Good coordination requires incentives that promote sharing of plans, horizontally and vertically, and that alleviate conflicts in goals and conflicts in beliefs that will inevitably surface once plans are shared. Thus, four different kinds of decision aids are needed to improve natural hazard planning: mechanisms that support horizontal dissemination of plans, mechanisms that support vertical dissemination, mechanisms for examining goal conflicts and reducing these through plans that take others' goals into account, and mechanisms for examining belief conflicts.

  9. Joint probability safety assessment for NPP defense infrastructure against extreme external natural hazards

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Guilin, L.; Defu, L.; Huajun, L.; Fengqing, W.; Tao, Z.


    With the increasing tendency of natural hazards, the typhoon, hurricane and tropical Cyclone induced surge, wave, precipitation, flood and wind as extreme external loads menacing Nuclear Power Plants (NPP) in coastal and inland provinces of China. For all of planned, designed And constructed NPP the National Nuclear Safety Administration of China and IAEA recommended Probable Maximum Hurricane /Typhoon/(PMH/T), Probable Maximum Storm Surge (PMSS), Probable Maximum Flood (PMF), Design Basis Flood (DBF) as safety regulations for NPP defense infrastructures. This paper discusses the joint probability analysis of simultaneous occurrence typhoon induced extreme external hazards and compare with IAEA 2006-2009 recommended safety regulation design criteria for some NPP defense infrastructures along China coast. (authors)

  10. Use of a Novel Visual Metaphor Measure (PRISM) to Evaluate School Children's Perceptions of Natural Hazards, Sources of Hazard Information, Hazard Mitigation Organizations, and the Effectiveness of Future Hazard Education Programs in Dominica, Eastern Car (United States)

    Parham, Martin; Day, Simon; Teeuw, Richard; Solana, Carmen; Sensky, Tom


    This project aims to study the development of understanding of natural hazards (and of hazard mitigation) from the age of 11 to the age of 15 in secondary school children from 5 geographically and socially different schools on Dominica, through repeated interviews with the students and their teachers. These interviews will be coupled with a structured course of hazard education in the Geography syllabus; the students not taking Geography will form a control group. To avoid distortion of our results arising from the developing verbalization and literacy skills of the students over the 5 years of the project, we have adapted the PRISM tool used in clinical practice to assess patient perceptions of illness and treatment (Buchi & Sensky, 1999). This novel measure is essentially non-verbal, and uses spatial positions of moveable markers ("object" markers) on a board, relative to a fixed marker that represents the subject's "self", as a visual metaphor for the importance of the object to the subject. The subjects also explain their reasons for placing the markers as they have, to provide additional qualitative information. The PRISM method thus produces data on the perceptions measured on the board that can be subjected to statistical analysis, and also succinct qualitative data about each subject. Our study will gather data on participants' perceptions of different natural hazards, different sources of information about these, and organizations or individuals to whom they would go for help in a disaster, and investigate how these vary with geographical and social factors. To illustrate the method, which is generalisable, we present results from our initial interviews of the cohort of 11 year olds whom we will follow through their secondary school education. Büchi, S., & Sensky, T. (1999). PRISM: Pictorial Representation of Illness and Self Measure: a brief nonverbal measure of illness impact and therapeutic aid in psychosomatic medicine. Psychosomatics, 40(4), 314-320.

  11. Social Vulnerability to Natural Hazards in Urban Systems. An Application in Santo Domingo (Dominican Republic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eleonora Giovene di Girasole


    Full Text Available The concept of risk has become increasingly complex, and has been used not only in relation to the natural features of a region, but also to its socio-economic context. In this conceptualization, the latter directly influences the capacity of a community to cope with, recover from, and adapt to natural hazards. Conceiving vulnerability as a measure of a socio-ecological system’s resilience, and at the same time, as a multidimensional variable that changes in space and time, makes the study of the different ways in which natural hazards impact on society all the more urgent. This is particularly true for developing countries, where risk related to natural hazards affects populations and areas that must deal with stress conditions, such as humanitarian, social and military emergencies. This article presents a methodology for the analysis of social vulnerability, defined and experimented in the context of the international cooperation project “Estudio de la amenaza sísmica y vulnerabilidad física del Gran Santo Domingo”. The methodology, implemented through the employment of a Geographic Information System, led to the elaboration of a “Social Vulnerability Index” and a “Social Vulnerability Map”. These seek to describe the current condition of vulnerability of the city of Santo Domingo de Guzmán (Distrito Nacional in the Dominican Republic (DR, and are used to define context-related vulnerability scenarios, as well as to indicate the adequate set of mitigation objectives and actions. The results highlight the importance of using social vulnerability study as the point of departure for defining seismic-risk mitigation policies, emergency management, and territorial planning in order to reduce the impacts of disasters.

  12. Natural hazards and urban policies in Mexico City

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    François Mancebo


    Full Text Available L’agglomération de Mexico, à plus de 2 000 mètres d’altitude, adossée à la Sierra Madre et la Cordillère Volcanique est assise sur un site accueillant mais redoutable. Il s’agit d’un des endroits les plus exposés du globe, soumis à une combinaison de risques naturels, de risques technologiques souvent mal maîtrisés dus à des industries lourdes, de nuisances, de cumul des polluants et d’un épuisement des ressources locales utilisables, tout particulièrement les ressources en eau. Après le séisme dévastateur de 1985, les acteurs de l’aménagement de Mexico tentent d’intégrer risques et durabilité dans la définition de nouvelles politiques urbaines. Mais, si les risques sont bien identifiés et des réponses sont données, leur applicabilité est quasi-nulle. Une approche normative et n’incluant pas l’ensemble de l’agglomération, mais utilisant les périphéries pour améliorer la durabilité des centres (sorte de durabilité importée à l’échelle de la métropole explique cette situation. Comme dans le mythe de Sisyphe, acteurs locaux et nationaux tentent de faire remonter la pente au rocher du risque mais ce dernier finit toujours par redescendre ? C’est qu’en réalité le problème n’est pas le rocher. Le problème, c’est la pente, c’est-à-dire le substrat fait de représentations territoriales et d’usages de l’espace qui fondent la société mexicaine, sur laquelle roule le rocher.Mexico City is located at an altitude of over 2 000 metres where it occupies an attractive but hazardous site hemmed in by the Sierra Madre and volcanic mountain ranges.The site is one of the most disaster-prone locations in the world, threatened by a combination of natural hazards, poorly controlled technological hazards created by the city’s heavy industry, pollution – particularly air pollution and diminishing local resources, the most seriously threatened being water. Since the devastating earthquake

  13. Radiation from visual display terminals is harmless - but there are other hazards

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hidos, P.


    Widespread cases of rashes on, and irritation of the facial skin and eye inflammation among operators using visual display terminals led to anxiety that the cause could be electromagnetic radiation from the screens. Investigations carried out by the US National Institute fOr occupational safety and Health show that this is not the case. Other health hazards of an ergonomic and psychological nature are however indicated. A hypothesis advanced by the Work Environment Inspectorate in Bergen (Norway) is that minute dust particles become highly electrostatically charged by the screens and act as projectiles, striking the face and eyes. (JIW)

  14. Destructive Interactions Between Mitigation Strategies and the Causes of Unexpected Failures in Natural Hazard Mitigation Systems (United States)

    Day, S. J.; Fearnley, C. J.


    Large investments in the mitigation of natural hazards, using a variety of technology-based mitigation strategies, have proven to be surprisingly ineffective in some recent natural disasters. These failures reveal a need for a systematic classification of mitigation strategies; an understanding of the scientific uncertainties that affect the effectiveness of such strategies; and an understanding of how the different types of strategy within an overall mitigation system interact destructively to reduce the effectiveness of the overall mitigation system. We classify mitigation strategies into permanent, responsive and anticipatory. Permanent mitigation strategies such as flood and tsunami defenses or land use restrictions, are both costly and 'brittle': when they malfunction they can increase mortality. Such strategies critically depend on the accuracy of the estimates of expected hazard intensity in the hazard assessments that underpin their design. Responsive mitigation strategies such as tsunami and lahar warning systems rely on capacities to detect and quantify the hazard source events and to transmit warnings fast enough to enable at risk populations to decide and act effectively. Self-warning and voluntary evacuation is also usually a responsive mitigation strategy. Uncertainty in the nature and magnitude of the detected hazard source event is often the key scientific obstacle to responsive mitigation; public understanding of both the hazard and the warnings, to enable decision making, can also be a critical obstacle. Anticipatory mitigation strategies use interpretation of precursors to hazard source events and are used widely in mitigation of volcanic hazards. Their critical limitations are due to uncertainties in time, space and magnitude relationships between precursors and hazard events. Examples of destructive interaction between different mitigation strategies are provided by the Tohoku 2011 earthquake and tsunami; recent earthquakes that have impacted

  15. An Integrative Research Framework to Unravel the Interplay of Natural Hazards and Vulnerabilities (United States)

    Di Baldassarre, Giuliano; Nohrstedt, Daniel; Mârd, Johanna; Burchardt, Steffi; Albin, Cecilia; Bondesson, Sara; Breinl, Korbinian; Deegan, Frances M.; Fuentes, Diana; Lopez, Marc Girons; Granberg, Mikael; Nyberg, Lars; Nyman, Monika Rydstedt; Rhodes, Emma; Troll, Valentin; Young, Stephanie; Walch, Colin; Parker, Charles F.


    Climate change, globalization, urbanization, social isolation, and increased interconnectedness between physical, human, and technological systems pose major challenges to disaster risk reduction (DRR). Subsequently, economic losses caused by natural hazards are increasing in many regions of the world, despite scientific progress, persistent policy action, and international cooperation. We argue that these dramatic figures call for novel scientific approaches and new types of data collection to integrate the two main approaches that still dominate the science underpinning DRR: the hazard paradigm and the vulnerability paradigm. Building from these two approaches, here we propose a research framework that specifies the scope of enquiry, concepts, and general relations among phenomena. We then discuss the essential steps to advance systematic empirical research and evidence-based DRR policy action.

  16. Prototype of a web - based participative decision support platform in natural hazards and risk management

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aye, Z.C.; Jaboyedoff, M.; Derron, M.H.; van Westen, C.J.


    This paper presents the current state and development of a prototype web-GIS (Geographic Information System) decision support platform intended for application in natural hazards and risk management, mainly for floods and landslides. This web platform uses open-source geospatial software and

  17. Earth sciences, GIS and geomatics for natural hazards assessment and risks mitigation: a civil protection perspective (United States)

    Perotti, Luigi; Conte, Riccardo; Lanfranco, Massimo; Perrone, Gianluigi; Giardino, Marco; Ratto, Sara


    Geo-information and remote sensing are proper tools to enhance functional strategies for increasing awareness on natural hazards and risks and for supporting research and operational activities devoted to disaster reduction. An improved Earth Sciences knowledge coupled with Geomatics advanced technologies has been developed by the joint research group and applied by the ITHACA (Information Technology for Humanitarian Assistance, Cooperation and Action) centre, within its partnership with the UN World Food Programme (WFP) with the goal of reducing human, social, economic and environmental losses due to natural hazards and related disasters. By cooperating with local and regional authorities (Municipalities, Centro Funzionale of the Aosta Valley, Civil Protection Agency of Regione Piemonte), data on natural hazards and risks have been collected, compared to national and global data, then interpreted for helping communities and civil protection agencies of sensitive mountain regions to make strategic choices and decisions to better mitigation and adaption measures. To enhance the application of GIS and Remote-sensing technologies for geothematic mapping of geological and geomorphological risks of mountain territories of Europe and Developing Countries, research activities led to the collection and evaluation of data from scientific literature and historical technical archives, for the definition of predisposing/triggering factors and evolutionary processes of natural instability phenomena (landslides, floods, storms, …) and for the design and implementation of early-warning and early-impact systems. Geodatabases, Remote Sensing and Mobile-GIS applications were developed to perform analysis of : 1) large climate-related disaster (Hurricane Mitch, Central America), by the application of remote sensing techniques, either for early warning or mitigation measures at the national and international scale; 2) distribution of slope instabilities at the regional scale (Aosta

  18. Landslide hazards and systems analysis: A Central European perspective (United States)

    Klose, Martin; Damm, Bodo; Kreuzer, Thomas


    landslides. Along with a large number of small, but costly landslide events and widespread insidious damages, the interplay of these societal trends determines landslide hazard and risk in Germany or elsewhere in Central Europe (e.g., Houlihan, 1994; Klose et al., 2015). The case studies presented here help to better understand human-environment interactions in the hazard context. Although there has been substantial progress in assessing landslide hazards, integrated approaches with an interdisciplinary focus are still exceptional. The scope of historical datasets available for hazard assessments, however, covers the whole range of natural and social systems interacting with hazards, their influences on overall system vulnerability, and the feedbacks, time lags, and couplings among these systems. In combination with methods from the natural and social sciences, systems analysis supports hazard assessments across disciplinary boundaries to take a broader look at landslide hazards as is usually done. References Houlihan, B., 1994. Europe's ageing infrastructure: Politics, finance and the environment. Utilities Policy 4, 243-252. Liu, J., Dietz, T., Carpenter, S.R., Alberti, M., Folke, C., Moran, E., Pell, A.N., Deadman, P., Kratz, T., Lubchenco, J., Ostrom, E., Ouyang, Z., Provencher, W., Redman, C.L., Schneider, S.H., Taylor, W.W., 2007. Complexity of Coupled Human and Natural Systems. Science 317, 1513-1516. Klose, M., Damm, B., Maurischat, P., 2015. Landslide impacts in Germany: A historical and socioeconomic perspective. Landslides, doi:10.1007/s10346-015-0643-9.

  19. Natural radioactivity and associated radiation hazardous of main building materials in Yan'an, China

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li Nan; Lu Xinwei; Yang Guang; Zhao Caifeng


    Background: With the rapidly economic development and urbanization in Yan'an city, more building materials were consumed in building construction. While the natural radioactivity level of building materials from Yan'an is limited in the literatures. Purpose: The main objective of this study is to determine the natural radioactivity level and to analyze the associated radiation hazards of building materials in Yan'an. Methods: The specific activities of natural radionuclides 226 Ra, 232 Th and 40 K in various building materials from Yan'an city were determined using low-background gamma-ray spectrometry, and their radiation hazards were evaluated according to the standard methods. Results: The results show that the specific activities of 226 Ra, 232 Th and 40 K in the building materials are 9.4-73.1, 11.5-86.9 and 258.9-1055.1 Bq/kg, respectively. The activities of 226 Ra and 232 Th, except for sand and gravel aggregate, in all other building materials are higher than the corresponding means of local soil, and the activities of 40 K in hollow brick, red-clay brick, sand and gravel aggregate exceed the means of 40 K in soil. However, the values of internal exposure index, external exposure index and gamma radiation index in all investigated building materials are less than 1. Conclusions: The radiation levels of all analyzed building materials are within the national safety standard, which indicates that all analyzed building materials can be used anywhere and they can't cause radiation hazard to the local residents. (authors)

  20. BICAPA case study of natural hazards that trigger technological disasters (United States)

    Boca, Gabriela; Ozunu, Alexandru; Nicolae Vlad, Serban


    Industrial facilities are vulnerable to natural disasters. Natural disasters and technological accidents are not always singular or isolated events. The example in this paper show that they can occur in complex combinations and/or in rapid succession, known as NaTech disasters, thereby triggering multiple impacts. This analysis indicates that NaTech disasters have the potential to trigger hazmat releases and other types of technological accidents. Climate changes play an important role in prevalence and NATECH triggering mechanisms. Projections under the IPCC IS92 a scenario (similar to SRES A1B; IPCC, 1992) and two GCMs indicate that the risk of floods increases in central and eastern Europe. Increase in intense short-duration precipitation is likely to lead to increased risk of flash floods. (Lehner et al., 2006). It is emergent to develop tools for the assessment of risks due to NATECH events in the industrial processes, in a framework starting with the characterization of frequency and severity of natural disasters and continuing with complex analysis of industrial processes, to risk assessment and residual functionality analysis. The Ponds with dangerous technological residues are the most vulnerable targets of natural hazards. Technological accidents such as those in Baia Mare, (from January to March 2000) had an important international echo. Extreme weather phenomena, like those in the winter of 2000 in Baia Mare, and other natural disasters such as floods or earthquakes, can cause a similar disaster at Târnăveni in Transylvania Depression. During 1972 - 1978 three decanting ponds were built on the Chemical Platform Târnăveni, now SC BICAPA SA, for disposal of the hazardous-wastes resulting from the manufacture of sodium dichromate, inorganic salts, sludge from waste water purification and filtration, wet gas production from carbide. The ponds are located on the right bank of the river Târnava at about 35-50m from the flooding defense dam. The total

  1. Logistic regression applied to natural hazards: rare event logistic regression with replications


    Guns, M.; Vanacker, Veerle


    Statistical analysis of natural hazards needs particular attention, as most of these phenomena are rare events. This study shows that the ordinary rare event logistic regression, as it is now commonly used in geomorphologic studies, does not always lead to a robust detection of controlling factors, as the results can be strongly sample-dependent. In this paper, we introduce some concepts of Monte Carlo simulations in rare event logistic regression. This technique, so-called rare event logisti...

  2. The PREVIEW Global Risk Data Platform: a geoportal to serve and share global data on risk to natural hazards

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Giuliani


    Full Text Available With growing world population and concentration in urban and coastal areas, the exposure to natural hazards is increasing and results in higher risk of human and economic losses. Improving the identification of areas, population and assets potentially exposed to natural hazards is essential to reduce the consequences of such events. Disaster risk is a function of hazard, exposure and vulnerability. Modelling risk at the global level requires accessing and processing a large number of data, from numerous collaborating centres.

    These data need to be easily updated, and there is a need for centralizing access to this information as well as simplifying its use for non GIS specialists. The Hyogo Framework for Action provides the mandate for data sharing, so that governments and international development agencies can take appropriate decision for disaster risk reduction.

    Timely access and easy integration of geospatial data are essential to support efforts in Disaster Risk Reduction. However various issues in data availability, accessibility and integration limit the use of such data. In consequence, a framework that facilitate sharing and exchange of geospatial data on natural hazards should improve decision-making process. The PREVIEW Global Risk Data Platform is a highly interactive web-based GIS portal supported by a Spatial Data Infrastructure that offers free and interoperable access to more than 60 global data sets on nine types of natural hazards (tropical cyclones and related storm surges, drought, earthquakes, biomass fires, floods, landslides, tsunamis and volcanic eruptions and related exposure and risk. This application portrays an easy-to-use online interactive mapping interface so that users can easily work with it and seamlessly integrate data in their own data flow using fully compliant OGC Web Services (OWS.

  3. The PREVIEW Global Risk Data Platform: a geoportal to serve and share global data on risk to natural hazards (United States)

    Giuliani, G.; Peduzzi, P.


    With growing world population and concentration in urban and coastal areas, the exposure to natural hazards is increasing and results in higher risk of human and economic losses. Improving the identification of areas, population and assets potentially exposed to natural hazards is essential to reduce the consequences of such events. Disaster risk is a function of hazard, exposure and vulnerability. Modelling risk at the global level requires accessing and processing a large number of data, from numerous collaborating centres. These data need to be easily updated, and there is a need for centralizing access to this information as well as simplifying its use for non GIS specialists. The Hyogo Framework for Action provides the mandate for data sharing, so that governments and international development agencies can take appropriate decision for disaster risk reduction. Timely access and easy integration of geospatial data are essential to support efforts in Disaster Risk Reduction. However various issues in data availability, accessibility and integration limit the use of such data. In consequence, a framework that facilitate sharing and exchange of geospatial data on natural hazards should improve decision-making process. The PREVIEW Global Risk Data Platform is a highly interactive web-based GIS portal supported by a Spatial Data Infrastructure that offers free and interoperable access to more than 60 global data sets on nine types of natural hazards (tropical cyclones and related storm surges, drought, earthquakes, biomass fires, floods, landslides, tsunamis and volcanic eruptions) and related exposure and risk. This application portrays an easy-to-use online interactive mapping interface so that users can easily work with it and seamlessly integrate data in their own data flow using fully compliant OGC Web Services (OWS).

  4. Use of cloud computing technology in natural hazard assessment and emergency management (United States)

    Webley, P. W.; Dehn, J.


    During a natural hazard event, the most up-to-date data needs to be in the hands of those on the front line. Decision support system tools can be developed to provide access to pre-made outputs to quickly assess the hazard and potential risk. However, with the ever growing availability of new satellite data as well as ground and airborne data generated in real-time there is a need to analyze the large volumes of data in an easy-to-access and effective environment. With the growth in the use of cloud computing, where the analysis and visualization system can grow with the needs of the user, then these facilities can used to provide this real-time analysis. Think of a central command center uploading the data to the cloud compute system and then those researchers in-the-field connecting to a web-based tool to view the newly acquired data. New data can be added by any user and then viewed instantly by anyone else in the organization through the cloud computing interface. This provides the ideal tool for collaborative data analysis, hazard assessment and decision making. We present the rationale for developing a cloud computing systems and illustrate how this tool can be developed for use in real-time environments. Users would have access to an interactive online image analysis tool without the need for specific remote sensing software on their local system therefore increasing their understanding of the ongoing hazard and mitigate its impact on the surrounding region.

  5. Nationwide Operational Assessment of Hazards and success stories in disaster prevention and mitigation in the Philippines (United States)

    Mahar Francisco Lagmay, Alfredo


    The Philippines, being a locus of typhoons, tsunamis, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions, is a hotbed of disasters. Natural hazards inflict loss of lives and costly damage to property in the country. In 2011, after tropical storm Washi devastated cities in southern Philippines, the Department of Science and Technology put in place a responsive program to warn and give communities hours-in-advance lead-time to prepare for imminent hazards and use advanced science and technology to enhance geohazard maps for more effective disaster prevention and mitigation. Since its launch, there have been many success stories on the use of Project NOAH, which after Typhoon Haiyan was integrated into the Pre-Disaster Risk Assessment (PDRA) system of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), the government agency tasked to prepare for, and respond to, natural calamities. Learning from past disasters, NDRRMC now issues warnings, through scientific advise from DOST-Project NOAH and PAGASA (Philippine Weather Bureau) that are hazards-specific, area-focused and time-bound. Severe weather events in 2015 generated dangerous hazard phenomena such as widespread floods and massive debris flows, which if not for timely, accessible and understandable warnings, could have turned into disasters. We call these events as "disasters that did not happen". The innovative warning system of the Philippine government has so far proven effective in addressing the impacts of hydrometeorological hazards and can be employed elsewhere in the world.

  6. Study Of The Risks Arising From Natural Disasters And Hazards On Urban And Intercity Motorways By Using Failure Mode Effect Analysis (FMEA) Methods (United States)

    DELİCE, Yavuz


    Highways, Located in the city and intercity locations are generally prone to many kind of natural disaster risks. Natural hazards and disasters that may occur firstly from highway project making to construction and operation stages and later during the implementation of highway maintenance and repair stages have to be taken into consideration. And assessment of risks that may occur against adverse situations is very important in terms of project design, construction, operation maintenance and repair costs. Making hazard and natural disaster risk analysis is largely depending on the definition of the likelihood of the probable hazards on the highways. However, assets at risk , and the impacts of the events must be examined and to be rated in their own. With the realization of these activities, intended improvements against natural hazards and disasters will be made with the utilization of Failure Mode Effects Analysis (FMEA) method and their effects will be analyzed with further works. FMEA, is a useful method to identify the failure mode and effects depending on the type of failure rate effects priorities and finding the most optimum economic and effective solution. Although relevant measures being taken for the identified risks by this analysis method , it may also provide some information for some public institutions about the nature of these risks when required. Thus, the necessary measures will have been taken in advance in the city and intercity highways. Many hazards and natural disasters are taken into account in risk assessments. The most important of these dangers can be listed as follows; • Natural disasters 1. Meteorological based natural disasters (floods, severe storms, tropical storms, winter storms, avalanches, etc.). 2. Geological based natural disasters (earthquakes, tsunamis, landslides, subsidence, sinkholes, etc) • Human originated disasters 1. Transport accidents (traffic accidents), originating from the road surface defects (icing

  7. The California Hazards Institute (United States)

    Rundle, J. B.; Kellogg, L. H.; Turcotte, D. L.


    California's abundant resources are linked with its natural hazards. Earthquakes, landslides, wildfires, floods, tsunamis, volcanic eruptions, severe storms, fires, and droughts afflict the state regularly. These events have the potential to become great disasters, like the San Francisco earthquake and fire of 1906, that overwhelm the capacity of society to respond. At such times, the fabric of civic life is frayed, political leadership is tested, economic losses can dwarf available resources, and full recovery can take decades. A patchwork of Federal, state and local programs are in place to address individual hazards, but California lacks effective coordination to forecast, prevent, prepare for, mitigate, respond to, and recover from, the harmful effects of natural disasters. Moreover, we do not know enough about the frequency, size, time, or locations where they may strike, nor about how the natural environment and man-made structures would respond. As California's population grows and becomes more interdependent, even moderate events have the potential to trigger catastrophes. Natural hazards need not become natural disasters if they are addressed proactively and effectively, rather than reactively. The University of California, with 10 campuses distributed across the state, has world-class faculty and students engaged in research and education in all fields of direct relevance to hazards. For that reason, the UC can become a world leader in anticipating and managing natural hazards in order to prevent loss of life and property and degradation of environmental quality. The University of California, Office of the President, has therefore established a new system-wide Multicampus Research Project, the California Hazards Institute (CHI), as a mechanism to research innovative, effective solutions for California. The CHI will build on the rich intellectual capital and expertise of the Golden State to provide the best available science, knowledge and tools for

  8. Natural phenomena hazards evaluation of equipment and piping of Gaseous Diffusion Plant Uranium Enrichment Facility

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Singhal, M.K.; Kincaid, J.H.; Hammond, C.R.; Stockdale, B.I.; Walls, J.C.


    In support of the Gaseous Diffusion Plant Safety Analysis Report Upgrade program (GDP SARUP), a natural phenomena hazards evaluation was performed for the main process equipment and piping in the uranium enrichment buildings at Paducah and Portsmouth gaseous diffusion plants. In order to reduce the cost of rigorous analyses, the evaluation methodology utilized a graded approach based on an experience data base collected by SQUG/EPRI that contains information on the performance of industrial equipment and piping during past earthquakes. This method consisted of a screening walkthrough of the facility in combination with the use of engineering judgment and simple calculations. By using these screenings combined with evaluations that contain decreasing conservatism, reductions in the time and cost of the analyses were significant. A team of experienced seismic engineers who were trained in the use of the DOE SQUG/EPRI Walkdown Screening Material was essential to the success of this natural phenomena hazards evaluation

  9. Natural phenomena hazards evaluation of equipment and piping of Gaseous Diffusion Plant Uranium Enrichment Facility

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Singhal, M.K.; Kincaid, J.H.; Hammond, C.R.; Stockdale, B.I.; Walls, J.C. [Oak Ridge National Lab., TN (United States). Technical Programs and Services; Brock, W.R.; Denton, D.R. [Lockheed Martin Energy Systems, Inc., Oak Ridge, TN (United States)


    In support of the Gaseous Diffusion Plant Safety Analysis Report Upgrade program (GDP SARUP), a natural phenomena hazards evaluation was performed for the main process equipment and piping in the uranium enrichment buildings at Paducah and Portsmouth gaseous diffusion plants. In order to reduce the cost of rigorous analyses, the evaluation methodology utilized a graded approach based on an experience data base collected by SQUG/EPRI that contains information on the performance of industrial equipment and piping during past earthquakes. This method consisted of a screening walkthrough of the facility in combination with the use of engineering judgment and simple calculations. By using these screenings combined with evaluations that contain decreasing conservatism, reductions in the time and cost of the analyses were significant. A team of experienced seismic engineers who were trained in the use of the DOE SQUG/EPRI Walkdown Screening Material was essential to the success of this natural phenomena hazards evaluation.

  10. Review article: the use of remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPASs) for natural hazards monitoring and management (United States)

    Giordan, Daniele; Hayakawa, Yuichi; Nex, Francesco; Remondino, Fabio; Tarolli, Paolo


    The number of scientific studies that consider possible applications of remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPASs) for the management of natural hazards effects and the identification of occurred damages strongly increased in the last decade. Nowadays, in the scientific community, the use of these systems is not a novelty, but a deeper analysis of the literature shows a lack of codified complex methodologies that can be used not only for scientific experiments but also for normal codified emergency operations. RPASs can acquire on-demand ultra-high-resolution images that can be used for the identification of active processes such as landslides or volcanic activities but can also define the effects of earthquakes, wildfires and floods. In this paper, we present a review of published literature that describes experimental methodologies developed for the study and monitoring of natural hazards.

  11. Social transformation in transdisciplinary natural hazard management (United States)

    Attems, Marie-Sophie; Fuchs, Sven; Thaler, Thomas


    Due to annual increases of natural hazard losses, there is a discussion among authorities and communities in Europe on innovative solutions to increase resilience, and consequently, business-as-usual in risk management practices is often questioned. Therefore, the current situation of risk management requests a societal transformation to response adequately and effectively to the new global dynamics. An emerging concept is the implementation of multiple-use mitigation systems against hazards such as floods, avalanches and land-slides. However, one key aspect refers to the involvement of knowledge outside academic research. Therefore, transdisciplinary knowledge can be used to discuss vital factors which are needed to upscale the implementation of multiple-use mitigation measures. The method used in this contribution is an explorative scenario analysis applied in Austria and processes the knowledge gained in transdisciplinary workshops. The scenario analysis combines qualitative data and the quantitative relations in order to generate a set of plausible future outcomes. The goal is to establish a small amount of consistent scenarios, which are efficient and thereby representative as well as significantly different from each other. The results of the discussions among relevant stakeholders within the workshops and a subsequent quantitative analysis, showed that vital variables influencing the multiple use of mitigation measures are the (1) current legislation, (2) risk acceptance among authorities and the public, (3) land-use pressure, (4) the demand for innovative solutions, (5) the available technical standards and possibilities and (6) finally the policy entrepreneurship. Four different scenarios were the final result of the analysis. Concluding the results, in order to make multiple-use alleviations systems possible contemporary settings concerning risk management strategies will have to change in the future. Legislation and thereby current barriers have to be


    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Perna, D.; Barucci, M. A.; Fornasier, S.; Deshapriya, J. D. P. [LESIA—Observatoire de Paris, PSL Research University, CNRS, Sorbonne Universités, UPMC Univ. Paris 06, Univ. Paris Diderot, Sorbonne Paris Cité, 5 place Jules Janssen, F-92195 Meudon (France); Dotto, E.; Ieva, S.; Epifani, E. Mazzotta [INAF—Osservatorio Astronomico di Roma, Via Frascati 33, I-00040 Monte Porzio Catone (Roma) (Italy); Bernardi, F. [SpaceDyS, via Mario Giuntini 63, I-56023 Cascina (Pisa) (Italy); Luise, F. De [INAF—Osservatorio Astronomico di Teramo, via Mentore Maggini snd, I-64100 Teramo (Italy); Perozzi, E. [Deimos Space, Strada Buchesti 75-77, Bucharest (Romania); Rossi, A. [IFAC—CNR, via Madonna del Piano 10, I-50019 Sesto Fiorentino (Firenze) (Italy); Micheli, M., E-mail: [ESA—NEOCC, ESRIN, via Galileo Galilei 64, I-00044 Frascati (Rome) (Italy)


    Through their delivery of water and organics, near-Earth objects (NEOs) played an important role in the emergence of life on our planet.  However, they also pose a hazard to the Earth, as asteroid impacts could significantly affect our civilization. Potentially hazardous asteroids (PHAs) are those that, in principle, could possibly impact the Earth within the next century, producing major damage. About 1600 PHAs are currently known, from an estimated population of 4700 ± 1450. However, a comprehensive characterization of the PHA physical properties is still missing. Here we present spectroscopic observations of 14 PHAs, which we have used to derive their taxonomy, meteorite analogs, and mineralogy. Combining our results with the literature, we investigated how PHAs are distributed as a function of their dynamical and physical properties. In general, the “carbonaceous” PHAs seem to be particularly threatening, because of their high porosity (limiting the effectiveness of the main deflection techniques that could be used in space) and low inclination and minimum orbit intersection distance (MOID) with the Earth (favoring more frequent close approaches). V-type PHAs also present low MOID values, which can produce frequent close approaches (as confirmed by the recent discovery of a limited space weathering on their surfaces). We also identified those specific objects that deserve particular attention because of their extreme rotational properties, internal strength, or possible cometary nature. For PHAs and NEOs in general, we identified a possible anti-correlation between the elongation and the rotational period, in the range of P{sub rot} ≈ 5–80 hr. This would be compatible with the behavior of gravity-dominated aggregates in rotational equilibrium. For periods ≳80–90 hr, such a trend stops, possibly under the influence of the YORP effect and collisions. However, the statistics is very low, and further observational and theoretical work is required

  13. Statistical power to detect violation of the proportional hazards assumption when using the Cox regression model. (United States)

    Austin, Peter C


    The use of the Cox proportional hazards regression model is widespread. A key assumption of the model is that of proportional hazards. Analysts frequently test the validity of this assumption using statistical significance testing. However, the statistical power of such assessments is frequently unknown. We used Monte Carlo simulations to estimate the statistical power of two different methods for detecting violations of this assumption. When the covariate was binary, we found that a model-based method had greater power than a method based on cumulative sums of martingale residuals. Furthermore, the parametric nature of the distribution of event times had an impact on power when the covariate was binary. Statistical power to detect a strong violation of the proportional hazards assumption was low to moderate even when the number of observed events was high. In many data sets, power to detect a violation of this assumption is likely to be low to modest.

  14. A Possible Paradigm for the Mitigation of the Adverse Impacts of Natural Hazards in the Developing Countries (United States)

    Aswathanarayana, U.


    The proneness of a country or region to a given natural hazard depends upon its geographical location, physiography, geological and structural setting, landuse/landcover situation, and biophysical and socioeconomic environments (e.g. cyclones and floods in Bangladesh, earthquakes in Turkey, drought in Sub-Saharan Africa). While the natural hazards themselves cannot be prevented, it is possible to mitigate their adverse effects, by a knowledge-based, environmentally-sustainable approach, involving the stakeholder communities: (i) by being prepared: on the basis of the understanding of the land conditions which are prone to a given hazard and the processes which could culminate in damage to life and property (e.g. planting of dense-rooted vegetation belts to protect against landslides in the earthquake-prone areas), (ii) by avoiding improper anthropogenic activities that may exacerbate a hazard (e.g. deforestation accentuating the floods and droughts), and (iii) by putting a hazard to a beneficial use, where possible (groundwater recharging of flood waters), etc. Mitigation strategies need to be custom-made for each country/region by integrating the biophysical and socioeconomic components. The proposed paradigm is illustrated in respect of Extreme Weather Events (EWEs), which is based on the adoption of three approaches: (i) Typology approach, involving the interpretation of remotely sensed data, to predict (say) temporal and spatial distribution of precipitation, (ii) "black box" approach, whereby the potential environmental consequences of an EWE are projected on the basis of previously known case histories, and (iii) Information Technology approach, to translate advanced technical information in the form of "virtual" do-it-yourself steps understandable to lay public.

  15. Plan for Prevention of Natural Hazards in Urban Areas. Case of the City of Constantine (Algeria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ykhlef Boubakeur


    Full Text Available Natural hazards are caused by different phenomena: landslides, earthquakes, floods etc. All the manifestations of forces of nature are called phenomena. We are speaking then of natural risks when these problems are threatening, with varying degrees, human activities, causing significant damage to human life, property and the environment. The need to consider natural hazards in land use planning tasks has become a major concern. During these past years, Algeria has been hit by frequent natural disasters, with the most recent ones endangering the lives of people and causing priceless damage, faced with such a situation the company of adequate measures, capable of exercising effective prevention, is essential. In addition to the seismic risk, for which prevention still needs to be improved, Algeria must also face gravity processes such as landslides. By their suddenness, they can put people in danger and destroy entire buildings involving the evacuation of entire neighbourhoods where the financial impact is significant on the state budget and local government. The main interest of this paper is the feasibility of a plan for prevention of natural disasters related to landslides based on geological maps, topography, hydrogeological and on existing buildings and vulnerability, and eventually lead to a Zoning risk that would be considered for inclusion in the Master Plan of Urban Planning and Land Use Plan and provide support for decisions taken by local authorities for the selection of sites.

  16. Economic optimization of natural hazard protection - conceptual study of existing approaches (United States)

    Spackova, Olga; Straub, Daniel


    Risk-based planning of protection measures against natural hazards has become a common practice in many countries. The selection procedure aims at identifying an economically efficient strategy with regard to the estimated costs and risk (i.e. expected damage). A correct setting of the evaluation methodology and decision criteria should ensure an optimal selection of the portfolio of risk protection measures under a limited state budget. To demonstrate the efficiency of investments, indicators such as Benefit-Cost Ratio (BCR), Marginal Costs (MC) or Net Present Value (NPV) are commonly used. However, the methodologies for efficiency evaluation differ amongst different countries and different hazard types (floods, earthquakes etc.). Additionally, several inconsistencies can be found in the applications of the indicators in practice. This is likely to lead to a suboptimal selection of the protection strategies. This study provides a general formulation for optimization of the natural hazard protection measures from a socio-economic perspective. It assumes that all costs and risks can be expressed in monetary values. The study regards the problem as a discrete hierarchical optimization, where the state level sets the criteria and constraints, while the actual optimization is made on the regional level (towns, catchments) when designing particular protection measures and selecting the optimal protection level. The study shows that in case of an unlimited budget, the task is quite trivial, as it is sufficient to optimize the protection measures in individual regions independently (by minimizing the sum of risk and cost). However, if the budget is limited, the need for an optimal allocation of resources amongst the regions arises. To ensure this, minimum values of BCR or MC can be required by the state, which must be achieved in each region. The study investigates the meaning of these indicators in the optimization task at the conceptual level and compares their

  17. Natural phenomena hazards project for Department of Energy sites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Coats, D.W.


    Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) has developed seismic and wind hazard models for the Office of Nuclear Safety (ONS), Department of Energy (DOE). The work is part of a three-phase effort aimed at establishing uniform building design criteria for seismic and wind hazards at DOE sites throughout the United States. In Phase 1, LLNL gathered information on the sites and their critical facilities, including nuclear reactors, fuel-reprocessing plants, high-level waste storage and treatment facilities, and special nuclear material facilities. In Phase 2, development of seismic and wind hazard models, was initiated. These hazard models express the annual probability that the site will experience an earthquake or wind speed greater than some specified magnitude. In the final phase, it is anticipated that the DOE will use the hazard models to establish uniform criteria for the design and evaluation of critical facilities. 13 references, 2 figures, 1 table

  18. A prototype web-GIS application for risk analysis of natural hazards in Switzerland (United States)

    Aye, Zar Chi; Nicolet, Pierrick; Jaboyedoff, Michel; Derron, Marc-Henri; Gerber, Christian; Lévy, Sebastien


    Following changes in the system of Swiss subsidy in January 2008, the Swiss cantons and the Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN) were forced to prioritize different natural hazard protection projects based on their cost-effectiveness, as a response to limited financial resources (Bründl et al., 2009). For this purpose, applications such as EconoMe (OFEV, 2016) and Valdorisk (DGE, 2016) were developed for risk evaluation and prioritization of mitigation projects. These tools serve as a useful decision-making instrument to the community of practitioners and responsible authorities for natural hazard risk management in Switzerland. However, there are several aspects which could be improved, in particular, the integration and visualization of spatial information interactively through a web-GIS interface for better risk planning and evaluation. Therefore, in this study, we aim to develop an interactive web-GIS application based on the risk concepts applied in Switzerland. The purpose of this tool is to provide a rapid evaluation of risk before and after protection measures, and to test the efficiency of measures by using a simplified cost-benefit analysis within the context of different protection projects. This application allows to integrate different layers which are necessary to calculate risk, in particular, hazard intensity (vector) maps for different scenarios (such as 30, 100 and 300 years of return periods based on Swiss guidelines), exposed objects (such as buildings) and vulnerability information of these objects. Based on provided information and additional parameters, risk is calculated automatically and results are visualized within the web-GIS interface of the application. The users can modify these input information and parameters to create different risk scenarios. Based on the resultant risk scenarios, the users can propose and visualize (preliminary) risk reduction measures before realizing the actual design and dimensions of such protective

  19. International School and Workshop on Nonlinear Mathematical Physics and Natural Hazards

    CERN Document Server

    Kouteva-Guentcheva, Mihaela


    This book is devoted to current advances in the field of nonlinear mathematical physics and modeling of critical phenomena that can lead to catastrophic events. Pursuing a multidisciplinary approach, it gathers the work of scientists who are developing mathematical and computational methods for the study and analysis of nonlinear phenomena and who are working actively to apply these tools and create conditions to mitigate and reduce the negative consequences of natural and socio-economic disaster risk. This book summarizes the contributions of the International School and Workshop on Nonlinear Mathematical Physics and Natural Hazards, organized within the framework of the South East Europe Network in Mathematical and Theoretical Physics (SEENET MTP) and supported by UNESCO. It was held at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences from November 28 to December 2, 2013. The contributions are divided into two major parts in keeping with the scientific program of the meeting. Among the topics covered in Part I (Nonlinear...

  20. Natural hazard management high education: laboratory of hydrologic and hydraulic risk management and applied geomorphology (United States)

    Giosa, L.; Margiotta, M. R.; Sdao, F.; Sole, A.; Albano, R.; Cappa, G.; Giammatteo, C.; Pagliuca, R.; Piccolo, G.; Statuto, D.


    The Environmental Engineering Faculty of University of Basilicata have higher-level course for students in the field of natural hazard. The curriculum provides expertise in the field of prediction, prevention and management of earthquake risk, hydrologic-hydraulic risk, and geomorphological risk. These skills will contribute to the training of specialists, as well as having a thorough knowledge of the genesis and the phenomenology of natural risks, know how to interpret, evaluate and monitor the dynamic of environment and of territory. In addition to basic training in the fields of mathematics and physics, the course of study provides specific lessons relating to seismic and structural dynamics of land, environmental and computational hydraulics, hydrology and applied hydrogeology. In particular in this course there are organized two connected examination arguments: Laboratory of hydrologic and hydraulic risk management and Applied geomorphology. These course foresee the development and resolution of natural hazard problems through the study of a real natural disaster. In the last year, the work project has regarded the collapse of two decantation basins of fluorspar, extracted from some mines in Stava Valley, 19 July 1985, northern Italy. During the development of the course, data and event information has been collected, a guided tour to the places of the disaster has been organized, and finally the application of mathematical models to simulate the disaster and analysis of the results has been carried out. The student work has been presented in a public workshop.

  1. A relação entre o social e o natural nas abordagens de hazards e de desastres The relation between the social and the natural in the approach of hazards and disasters

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcos Antônio Mattedi


    Full Text Available O artigo aborda as teorias dos Hazards e dos Desastres. Nos últimos anos estas duas tradições teóricas têm recebido novos impulsos pela renovação de seus marcos de referência conceitual. Construídas em torno de uma longa tradição de pesquisa empírica, estas teorias explicam os impactos provocados por fenômenos como enchentes, terremotos, tornados e epidemias mediante a integração analítica das dimensões natural e social. Neste sentido, seu estudo pode fornecer subsídios para a interpretação destes problemas no Brasil.The article deals with the theory of hazards and disasters. Over the past years, these two theoretical traditions have received new impulse through the renovation of their conceptual foundations. Constructed around a long tradition of empirical research, these theories explain the impacts brought by phenomena like floods, earthquakes, tornadoes and epidemics through the analytical integration of social and natural dimensions. In this regard, its study may provide grants in order to interpret these problems in Brazil.

  2. RAPID-N: Assessing and mapping the risk of natural-hazard impact at industrial installations (United States)

    Girgin, Serkan; Krausmann, Elisabeth


    Natural hazard-triggered technological accidents (so-called Natech accidents) at hazardous installations can have major consequences due to the potential for release of hazardous materials, fires and explosions. Effective Natech risk reduction requires the identification of areas where this risk is high. However, recent studies have shown that there are hardly any methodologies and tools that would allow authorities to identify these areas. To work towards closing this gap, the European Commission's Joint Research Centre has developed the rapid Natech risk assessment and mapping framework RAPID-N. The tool, which is implemented in an online web-based environment, is unique in that it contains all functionalities required for running a full Natech risk analysis simulation (natural hazards severity estimation, equipment damage probability and severity calculation, modeling of the consequences of loss of containment scenarios) and for visualizing its results. The output of RAPID-N are risk summary reports and interactive risk maps which can be used for decision making. Currently, the tool focuses on Natech risk due to earthquakes at industrial installations. However, it will be extended to also analyse and map Natech risk due to floods in the near future. RAPID-N is available at This presentation will discuss the results of case-study calculations performed for selected flammable and toxic substances to test the capabilities of RAPID-N both for single- and multi-site earthquake Natech risk assessment. For this purpose, an Istanbul earthquake scenario provided by the Turkish government was used. The results of the exercise show that RAPID-N is a valuable decision-support tool that assesses the Natech risk and maps the consequence end-point distances. These end-point distances are currently defined by 7 kPa overpressure for Vapour Cloud Explosions, 2nd degree burns for pool fire (which is equivalent to a heat radiation of 5 kW/m2 for 40s

  3. Has land subsidence changed the flood hazard potential? A case example from the Kujukuri Plain, Chiba Prefecture, Japan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. L. Chen


    Full Text Available Coastal areas are subject to flood hazards because of their topographic features, social development and related human activities. The Kujukuri Plain, Chiba Prefecture, Japan, is located nearby the Tokyo metropolitan area and it faces to the Pacific Ocean. In the Kujukuri Plain, widespread occurrence of land subsidence has been caused by exploitation of groundwater, extraction of natural gas dissolved in brine, and natural consolidation of the Holocene and landfill deposits. The locations of land subsidence include areas near the coast, and it may increase the flood hazard potential. Hence, it is very important to evaluate flood hazard potential by taking into account the temporal change of land elevation caused by land subsidence, and to prepare hazard maps for protecting the surface environment and for developing an appropriate land-use plan. In this study, flood hazard assessments at three different times, i.e., 1970, 2004, and 2013 are implemented by using a flood hazard model based on Multicriteria Decision Analysis with Geographical Information System techniques. The model incorporates six factors: elevation, depression area, river system, ratio of impermeable area, detention ponds, and precipitation. Main data sources used are 10 m resolution topography data, airborne laser scanning data, leveling data, Landsat-TM data, two 1:30 000 scale river watershed maps, and precipitation data from observation stations around the study area and Radar data. The hazard assessment maps for each time are obtained by using an algorithm that combines factors with weighted linear combinations. The assignment of the weight/rank values and their analysis are realized by the application of the Analytic Hierarchy Process method. This study is a preliminary work to investigate flood hazards on the Kujukuri Plain. A flood model will be developed to simulate more detailed change of the flood hazard influenced by land subsidence.

  4. Reliability and effectiveness of early warning systems for natural hazards: Concept and application to debris flow warning

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sättele, Martina; Bründl, Michael; Straub, Daniel


    Early Warning Systems (EWS) are increasingly applied to mitigate the risks posed by natural hazards. To compare the effect of EWS with alternative risk reduction measures and to optimize their design and operation, their reliability and effectiveness must be quantified. In the present contribution, a framework approach to the evaluation of threshold-based EWS for natural hazards is presented. The system reliability is classically represented by the Probability of Detection (POD) and Probability of False Alarms (PFA). We demonstrate how the EWS effectiveness, which is a measure of risk reduction, can be formulated as a function of POD and PFA. To model the EWS and compute the reliability, we develop a framework based on Bayesian Networks, which is further extended to a decision graph, facilitating the optimization of the warning system. In a case study, the framework is applied to the assessment of an existing debris flow EWS. The application demonstrates the potential of the framework for identifying the important factors influencing the effectiveness of the EWS and determining optimal warning strategies and system configurations. - Highlights: • Warning systems are increasingly applied measures to reduce natural hazard risks. • Bayesian Networks (BN) are powerful tools to quantify warning system's reliability. • The effectiveness is defined to assess the optimality of warning systems. • By extending BNs to decision graphs, the optimal warning strategy is identified. • Sensors positioning significantly influence the effectiveness of warning systems

  5. In situ vitrification applications to hazardous wastes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Liikala, S.


    In Situ Vitrification is a new hazardous waste remediation alternative that should be considered for contaminated soil matrices. According to the authors the advantages of using ISV include: technology demonstrated at field scale; applicable to a wide variety of soils and contaminants; pyrolyzer organics and encapsulates inorganics; product durable over geologic time period; no threat of harm to the public from exposure; and applications available for barrier walls and structural support. The use of ISV on a large scale basis has thus far been limited to the nuclear industry but has tremendous potential for widespread applications to the hazardous waste field. With the ever changing regulations for the disposal of hazardous waste in landfills, and the increasing positive analytical data of ISV, the process will become a powerful source for on-site treatment and hazardous waste management needs in the very near future

  6. Probabilistic Safety Assessment (PSA) of Natural External Hazards Including Earthquakes. Workshop Proceedings, Prague, Czech Republic, 17-20 June 2013

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)


    The Fukushima Dai-ichi accident triggered discussions about the significance of external hazards and their treatment in safety analyses. In addition, stress tests results have shown vulnerabilities and potential of cliff-edge effects in plant responses to external hazards and have identified possibilities and priorities for improvements and safety measures' implementation at specific sites and designs. In order to address these issues and provide relevant conclusions and recommendations to CSNI and CNRA, the CSNI Working Group on Risk Assessment (WGRISK) directed, in cooperation with the CSNI Working Group on Integrity and Ageing of Components and Structures (WGIAGE), a workshop hosted by UJV Rez. The key objectives of the workshop were to collect information from the OECD member states on methods and approaches being used, and experience gained in probabilistic safety assessment of natural external hazards, as well as to support the fulfillment of the CSNI task on 'PSA of natural external hazards including earthquakes'. These objectives are described more in detail in the introduction in Chapter 1 of this report. The WGRISK activities preceding the workshop and leading to the decision to organize it are described in Chapter 2 of this report. The focus of the workshop was on external events PSA for nuclear power plants, including all modes of operation. The workshop scope was generally limited to external, natural hazards, including those hazards where the distinction between natural and man-made hazards is not sharp. The detailed information about the presentations, discussions, and results of the workshop is presented in Chapter 3 of this report. Some general conclusions were agreed on during the workshop, which are presented in the following paragraphs. - The lessons learned from the Fukushima Dai-ichi reactor accidents and related actions at the national, regional, and global level have emphasized the importance to assess risks associated (authors) with

  7. The impact of expert knowledge on natural hazard susceptibility assessment using spatial multi-criteria analysis (United States)

    Karlsson, Caroline; Kalantari, Zahra; Mörtberg, Ulla; Olofsson, Bo; Lyon, Steve


    Road and railway networks are one of the key factors to a country's economic growth. Inadequate infrastructural networks could be detrimental to a society if the transport between locations are hindered or delayed. Logistical hindrances can often be avoided whereas natural hindrances are more difficult to control. One natural hindrance that can have a severe adverse effect on both infrastructure and society is flooding. Intense and heavy rainfall events can trigger other natural hazards such as landslides and debris flow. Disruptions caused by landslides are similar to that of floods and increase the maintenance cost considerably. The effect on society by natural disasters is likely to increase due to a changed climate with increasing precipitation. Therefore, there is a need for risk prevention and mitigation of natural hazards. Determining susceptible areas and incorporating them in the decision process may reduce the infrastructural harm. Spatial multi-criteria analysis (SMCA) is a part of decision analysis, which provides a set of procedures for analysing complex decision problems through a Geographic Information System (GIS). The objective and aim of this study was to evaluate the usefulness of expert judgements for inundation, landslide and debris flow susceptibility assessments through a SMCA approach using hydrological, geological and land use factors. The sensitivity of the SMCA model was tested in relation to each perspective and impact on the resulting susceptibility. A least cost path function was used to compare new alternative road lines with the existing ones. This comparison was undertaken to identify the resulting differences in the susceptibility assessments using expert judgements as well as historic incidences of flooding and landslides in order to discuss the usefulness of the model in road planning.

  8. The joint return period analysis of natural disasters based on monitoring and statistical modeling of multidimensional hazard factors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liu, Xueqin [State Key Laboratory of Earth Surface Processes and Resource Ecology, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875 (China); National Marine Environmental Monitoring Center, State Oceanic Administration, Dalian 116023 (China); School of Social Development and Public Policy, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875 (China); Li, Ning [State Key Laboratory of Earth Surface Processes and Resource Ecology, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875 (China); Yuan, Shuai, E-mail: [National Marine Environmental Monitoring Center, State Oceanic Administration, Dalian 116023 (China); Xu, Ning; Shi, Wenqin; Chen, Weibin [National Marine Environmental Monitoring Center, State Oceanic Administration, Dalian 116023 (China)


    As a random event, a natural disaster has the complex occurrence mechanism. The comprehensive analysis of multiple hazard factors is important in disaster risk assessment. In order to improve the accuracy of risk analysis and forecasting, the formation mechanism of a disaster should be considered in the analysis and calculation of multi-factors. Based on the consideration of the importance and deficiencies of multivariate analysis of dust storm disasters, 91 severe dust storm disasters in Inner Mongolia from 1990 to 2013 were selected as study cases in the paper. Main hazard factors from 500-hPa atmospheric circulation system, near-surface meteorological system, and underlying surface conditions were selected to simulate and calculate the multidimensional joint return periods. After comparing the simulation results with actual dust storm events in 54 years, we found that the two-dimensional Frank Copula function showed the better fitting results at the lower tail of hazard factors and that three-dimensional Frank Copula function displayed the better fitting results at the middle and upper tails of hazard factors. However, for dust storm disasters with the short return period, three-dimensional joint return period simulation shows no obvious advantage. If the return period is longer than 10 years, it shows significant advantages in extreme value fitting. Therefore, we suggest the multivariate analysis method may be adopted in forecasting and risk analysis of serious disasters with the longer return period, such as earthquake and tsunami. Furthermore, the exploration of this method laid the foundation for the prediction and warning of other nature disasters. - Highlights: • A method to estimate the multidimensional joint return periods is presented. • 2D function allows better fitting results at the lower tail of hazard factors. • Three-dimensional simulation has obvious advantages in extreme value fitting. • Joint return periods are closer to the reality

  9. The joint return period analysis of natural disasters based on monitoring and statistical modeling of multidimensional hazard factors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Liu, Xueqin; Li, Ning; Yuan, Shuai; Xu, Ning; Shi, Wenqin; Chen, Weibin


    As a random event, a natural disaster has the complex occurrence mechanism. The comprehensive analysis of multiple hazard factors is important in disaster risk assessment. In order to improve the accuracy of risk analysis and forecasting, the formation mechanism of a disaster should be considered in the analysis and calculation of multi-factors. Based on the consideration of the importance and deficiencies of multivariate analysis of dust storm disasters, 91 severe dust storm disasters in Inner Mongolia from 1990 to 2013 were selected as study cases in the paper. Main hazard factors from 500-hPa atmospheric circulation system, near-surface meteorological system, and underlying surface conditions were selected to simulate and calculate the multidimensional joint return periods. After comparing the simulation results with actual dust storm events in 54 years, we found that the two-dimensional Frank Copula function showed the better fitting results at the lower tail of hazard factors and that three-dimensional Frank Copula function displayed the better fitting results at the middle and upper tails of hazard factors. However, for dust storm disasters with the short return period, three-dimensional joint return period simulation shows no obvious advantage. If the return period is longer than 10 years, it shows significant advantages in extreme value fitting. Therefore, we suggest the multivariate analysis method may be adopted in forecasting and risk analysis of serious disasters with the longer return period, such as earthquake and tsunami. Furthermore, the exploration of this method laid the foundation for the prediction and warning of other nature disasters. - Highlights: • A method to estimate the multidimensional joint return periods is presented. • 2D function allows better fitting results at the lower tail of hazard factors. • Three-dimensional simulation has obvious advantages in extreme value fitting. • Joint return periods are closer to the reality

  10. Natural Hazards Education in the Himalayan Region of Ladakh, India (United States)

    Gill, Joel; Tostevin, Rosalie


    Here we present a review of a geohazards education and engagement project in the Indian region of Ladakh. Located in the Indian Himalaya, Ladakh is home to historically-disadvantaged and endangered indigenous groups. It is also an area of extreme topography, climate and vulnerability, with a growing tourist industry. This combination of factors makes it an important region to improve geohazards understanding and observe the complex interactions between nature, society, and culture. This project: (i) delivered a geoscience education programme, in conjunction with a range of local and international partners, to multiple schools in the region; (ii) utilised interactive demonstrations to teach students about the key physical dynamics of landslides and earthquakes; and (iii) integrated aspects of physical and social science within the teaching, to give students a holistic understanding of natural hazards and disaster risk reduction. In total three programmes were delivered, to a range of different ethnic and socio-economic backgrounds. This presentation will particularly highlight (i) the importance of delivering material in a culturally appropriate way, (ii) challenges regarding the sustainability of delivering high quality geoscience education projects, and (iii) ways in which geoscience education outreach can be mainstreamed into overseas research visits.

  11. Chapter 5. Assessing the Aquatic Hazards of Veterinary Medicines (United States)

    In recent years, there has been increasing awareness of the widespread distribution of low concentrations of veterinary medicine products and other pharmaceuticals in the aquatic environment. While aquatic hazard for a select group of veterinary medicines has received previous s...

  12. Tourism facing the challenge of recurring natural hazards: a view from Cancún


    Frank Babinger


    This article discusses the duality between economic development based on tourism and the impact of land occupation at the expense of an environment that includes specific natural hazards. The transformation of coastal areas to be occupied by tourism is one of the serious problems which are not taken into account when planning the activity. Cancún is a paradigmatic model in which an explosive growth in tourists, residents and tourist buildings has led to the massive occupation of a coastal are...

  13. An emerging methodology of slope hazard assessment for natural gas pipelines

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhou, Z.J.; O' Neil, G.; Rizkalla, M. [TransCanada PipeLines Ltd., Calgary, AB (Canada)


    A new slope assessment methodology has been developed by TransCanada PipeLines Ltd. in an effort to switch from a reactive to a proactive hazard management approach and to optimize maintenance expenditure. The company operates 37,000 km of natural gas gathering and transmission pipelines, portions of which traverse slopes and stream crossings. The newly developed rainfall-ground movement model provides site-specific ground movement predictions for approximately 1100 slopes and establishes a risk-ranked list of slopes upon which maintenance decisions can be based. The input to the predictive model is derived from internal and public information regarding site conditions. This information serves as input to a pipe-soil interaction model to determine the probability of pipeline failure for each slope. The ground movement for this model is limited to creep-type which is typically less than 100 mm per year. Landslides are not addressed in this paper. A system-wide database has been constructed for slopes to prioritize the slope movement hazards. The slope information includes geotechnical data such as bedrock geology, surficial geology, slope details, precipitation and erosion potential. Information related to the pipeline includes the location, age, size, as well as design pressure and temperature. 13 refs., 2 figs.

  14. Socio-economic vulnerability to natural hazards - proposal for an indicator-based model (United States)

    Eidsvig, U.; McLean, A.; Vangelsten, B. V.; Kalsnes, B.; Ciurean, R. L.; Argyroudis, S.; Winter, M.; Corominas, J.; Mavrouli, O. C.; Fotopoulou, S.; Pitilakis, K.; Baills, A.; Malet, J. P.


    Vulnerability assessment, with respect to natural hazards, is a complex process that must consider multiple dimensions of vulnerability, including both physical and social factors. Physical vulnerability refers to conditions of physical assets, and may be modeled by the intensity and magnitude of the hazard, the degree of physical protection provided by the natural and built environment, and the physical robustness of the exposed elements. Social vulnerability refers to the underlying factors leading to the inability of people, organizations, and societies to withstand impacts from the natural hazards. Social vulnerability models can be used in combination with physical vulnerability models to estimate both direct losses, i.e. losses that occur during and immediately after the impact, as well as indirect losses, i.e. long-term effects of the event. Direct impact of a landslide typically includes casualties and damages to buildings and infrastructure while indirect losses may e.g. include business closures or limitations in public services. The direct losses are often assessed using physical vulnerability indicators (e.g. construction material, height of buildings), while indirect losses are mainly assessed using social indicators (e.g. economical resources, demographic conditions). Within the EC-FP7 SafeLand research project, an indicator-based method was proposed to assess relative socio-economic vulnerability to landslides. The indicators represent the underlying factors which influence a community's ability to prepare for, deal with, and recover from the damage associated with landslides. The proposed model includes indicators representing demographic, economic and social characteristics as well as indicators representing the degree of preparedness and recovery capacity. Although the model focuses primarily on the indirect losses, it could easily be extended to include more physical indicators which account for the direct losses. Each indicator is individually

  15. Web-Based Geospatial Tools to Address Hazard Mitigation, Natural Resource Management, and Other Societal Issues (United States)

    Hearn,, Paul P.


    Federal, State, and local government agencies in the United States face a broad range of issues on a daily basis. Among these are natural hazard mitigation, homeland security, emergency response, economic and community development, water supply, and health and safety services. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) helps decision makers address these issues by providing natural hazard assessments, information on energy, mineral, water and biological resources, maps, and other geospatial information. Increasingly, decision makers at all levels are challenged not by the lack of information, but by the absence of effective tools to synthesize the large volume of data available, and to utilize the data to frame policy options in a straightforward and understandable manner. While geographic information system (GIS) technology has been widely applied to this end, systems with the necessary analytical power have been usable only by trained operators. The USGS is addressing the need for more accessible, manageable data tools by developing a suite of Web-based geospatial applications that will incorporate USGS and cooperating partner data into the decision making process for a variety of critical issues. Examples of Web-based geospatial tools being used to address societal issues follow.

  16. Distributed GIS for automated natural hazard zonation mapping Internet-SMS warning towards sustainable society

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Devanjan Bhattacharya


    Full Text Available Today, open systems are needed for real time analysis and warnings on geo-hazards and over time can be achieved using Open Source Geographical Information System (GIS-based platform such as GeoNode which is being contributed to by developers around the world. To develop on an open source platform is a very vital component for better disaster information management as far as spatial data infrastructures are concerned and this would be extremely vital when huge databases are to be created and consulted regularly for city planning at different scales, particularly satellite images and maps of locations. There is a big need for spatially referenced data creation, analysis, and management. Some of the salient points that this research would be able to definitely contribute with GeoNode, being an open source platform, are facilitating the creation, sharing, and collaborative use of geospatial data. The objective is development of an automated natural hazard zonation system with Internet-short message service (SMS warning utilizing geomatics for sustainable societies. A concept of developing an internet-resident geospatial geohazard warning system has been put forward in this research, which can communicate alerts via SMS. There has been a need to develop an automated integrated system to categorize hazard and issue warning that reaches users directly. At present, no web-enabled warning system exists which can disseminate warning after hazard evaluation at one go and in real time. The objective of this research work has been to formalize a notion of an integrated, independent, generalized, and automated geo-hazard warning system making use of geo-spatial data under popular usage platform. In this paper, a model of an automated geo-spatial hazard warning system has been elaborated. The functionality is to be modular in architecture having GIS-graphical user interface (GUI, input, understanding, rainfall prediction, expert, output, and warning modules. A

  17. Performance of USGS one-year earthquake hazard map for natural and induced seismicity in the central and eastern United States (United States)

    Brooks, E. M.; Stein, S.; Spencer, B. D.; Salditch, L.; Petersen, M. D.; McNamara, D. E.


    Seismicity in the central United States has dramatically increased since 2008 due to the injection of wastewater produced by oil and gas extraction. In response, the USGS created a one-year probabilistic hazard model and map for 2016 to describe the increased hazard posed to the central and eastern United States. Using the intensity of shaking reported to the "Did You Feel It?" system during 2016, we assess the performance of this model. Assessing the performance of earthquake hazard maps for natural and induced seismicity is conceptually similar but has practical differences. Maps that have return periods of hundreds or thousands of years— as commonly used for natural seismicity— can be assessed using historical intensity data that also span hundreds or thousands of years. Several different features stand out when assessing the USGS 2016 seismic hazard model for the central and eastern United States from induced and natural earthquakes. First, the model can be assessed as a forecast in one year, because event rates are sufficiently high to permit evaluation with one year of data. Second, because these models are projections from the previous year thus implicitly assuming that fluid injection rates remain the same, misfit may reflect changes in human activity. Our results suggest that the model was very successful by the metric implicit in probabilistic hazard seismic assessment: namely, that the fraction of sites at which the maximum shaking exceeded the mapped value is comparable to that expected. The model also did well by a misfit metric that compares the spatial patterns of predicted and maximum observed shaking. This was true for both the central and eastern United States as a whole, and for the region within it with the highest amount of seismicity, Oklahoma and its surrounding area. The model performed least well in northern Texas, over-stating hazard, presumably because lower oil and gas prices and regulatory action reduced the water injection volume

  18. Geoeducation and Geoethics: Implications in natural hazards communication and preservation of architectonic heritage. (United States)

    Pereira, Dolores; Martinez-Frías, Jesus; Mantovani, Franco


    In the framework of the ERASMUS Intensive Programme (IP) on "Global Heritage and Sustainability: Geological, Cultural and Historical", a round table was organised on "Geoeducation and Geoethics in Earth and Planetary Sciences" taking advantage of the role of the IP coordinator also being responsible for the "Heritage Stone Task Group" (HSTG) at IUGS and in addition the presence of the responsible for the "IUGS Commission on Geoscience Education, Training and Technology Transfer" (IUGS-COGE) and President of the International Association of Geoethics (IAGETH). Another responsible for the round table was an expert on natural risks. This topic formed an important part of the program of this IP, that in 2013 was celebrating its third and final edition. This round table was one of the first exchanges of views among different IUGS commissions and task groups. It offered a very good opportunity to analyse how aware is the scientific community about the importance of education and ethics in communicating natural hazards risks and their relationship preserving architectonic heritage, which was the main subject of the Intensive Programme. Eighteen participants contributed to the event with the following backgrounds: Geology, Engineering Geology, Architecture, Civil Engineering, Environmental Engineering, Civil Protection and English Philology. All participants were either undergraduate students or graduate students, at a Masters and Doctoral level from the following countries: Spain, Portugal, Italy and Hungary. The purpose of this study is to establish an initial link between geoethics and geoeducation when teaching university students at different levels of subject such as natural hazards risks communication and the preservation of architectonic heritage. The respective IUGS Commissions and Task Groups can lead the debate. This work was sponsored by the ERASMUS Intensive Programme 2012-1-ES1-ERA10-54375 and it was done within the framework of the IUGS Heritage Stone Task

  19. Determining the explosion risk level and the explosion hazard area for a group of natural gas wells (United States)

    Gligor, A.; Petrescu, V.; Deac, C.; Bibu, M.


    Starting from the fact that the natural gas engineering profession is generally associated with a high occupational risk, the current paper aims to help increase the safety of natural gas wells and reduce the risk of work-related accidents, as well as the occurrence of professional illnesses, by applying an assessment method that has proven its efficiency in other industrial areas in combination with a computer-aided design software. More specifically, the paper focuses on two main research directions: assessing the explosion risk for employees working at natural gas wells and indicating areas with a higher explosion hazard by using a modern software that allows their presentation in 3D. The appropriate zoning of industrial areas allows to group the various functional areas function of the probability of the occurrence of a dangerous element, such as an explosive atmosphere and subsequently it allows also to correctly select the electrical and mechanical equipment that will be used in that area, since electrical apparatuses that are otherwise found in normal work environments cannot generally be used in areas with explosion hazard, because of the risk that an electric spark, an electrostatic discharge etc. ignites the explosive atmosphere.

  20. High-Precision and Low Latency RT-GNSS Processed Data for Diverse Geophysical and Natural Hazard Communities. (United States)

    Mencin, David; Hodgkinson, Kathleen; Sievers, Charlie; David, Phillips; Charles, Meertens; Glen, Mattioli


    UNAVCO has been providing infrastructure and support for solid-earth sciences and earthquake natural hazards for the past two decades. Recent advances in GNSS technology and data processing are now providing position solutions with centimeter-level precision at high-rate (>1 Hz) and low latency (i.e. the time required for data to arrive for analysis, in this case less than 1 second). These data have the potential to improve our understanding in diverse areas of geophysics including properties of seismic, volcanic, magmatic and tsunami sources, and thus profoundly transform rapid event characterization and warning. Scientific and operational applications also include glacier and ice sheet motions; tropospheric modeling; and space weather. These areas of geophysics represent a spectrum of research fields, including geodesy, seismology, tropospheric weather, space weather and natural hazards. Processed Real-Time GNSS (RT-GNSS) data will require formats and standards that allow this broad and diverse community to use these data and associated meta-data in existing research infrastructure. These advances have critically highlighted the difficulties associated with merging data and metadata between scientific disciplines. Even seemingly very closely related fields such as geodesy and seismology, which both have rich histories of handling large volumes of data and metadata, do not go together well in any automated way. Community analysis strategies, or lack thereof, such as treatment of error prove difficult to address and are reflected in the data and metadata. In addition, these communities have differing security, accessibility and reliability requirements. We propose some solutions to the particular problem of making RT-GNSS processed solution data and metadata accessible to multiply scientific and natural hazard communities. Importantly, we discuss the roadblocks encounter and solved and those that remain to be addressed.

  1. Toxic hazards of underground excavation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Smith, R.; Chitnis, V.; Damasian, M.


    Inadvertent intrusion into natural or man-made toxic or hazardous material deposits as a consequence of activities such as mining, excavation or tunnelling has resulted in numerous deaths and injuries in this country. This study is a preliminary investigation to identify and document instances of such fatal or injurious intrusion. An objective is to provide useful insights and information related to potential hazards due to future intrusion into underground radioactive-waste-disposal facilities. The methodology used in this study includes literature review and correspondence with appropriate government agencies and organizations. Key categories of intrusion hazards are asphyxiation, methane, hydrogen sulfide, silica and asbestos, naturally occurring radionuclides, and various mine or waste dump related hazards

  2. Toxic hazards of underground excavation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Smith, R.; Chitnis, V.; Damasian, M.; Lemm, M.; Popplesdorf, N.; Ryan, T.; Saban, C.; Cohen, J.; Smith, C.; Ciminesi, F.


    Inadvertent intrusion into natural or man-made toxic or hazardous material deposits as a consequence of activities such as mining, excavation or tunnelling has resulted in numerous deaths and injuries in this country. This study is a preliminary investigation to identify and document instances of such fatal or injurious intrusion. An objective is to provide useful insights and information related to potential hazards due to future intrusion into underground radioactive-waste-disposal facilities. The methodology used in this study includes literature review and correspondence with appropriate government agencies and organizations. Key categories of intrusion hazards are asphyxiation, methane, hydrogen sulfide, silica and asbestos, naturally occurring radionuclides, and various mine or waste dump related hazards.

  3. Hyperspectral Cubesat Constellation for Rapid Natural Hazard Response (United States)

    Mandl, D.; Huemmrich, K. F.; Ly, V. T.; Handy, M.; Ong, L.; Crum, G.


    With the advent of high performance space networks that provide total coverage for Cubesats, the paradigm for low cost, high temporal coverage with hyperspectral instruments becomes more feasible. The combination of ground cloud computing resources, high performance with low power consumption onboard processing, total coverage for the cubesats and social media provide an opprotunity for an architecture that provides cost-effective hyperspectral data products for natural hazard response and decision support. This paper provides a series of pathfinder efforts to create a scalable Intelligent Payload Module(IPM) that has flown on a variety of airborne vehicles including Cessna airplanes, Citation jets and a helicopter and will fly on an Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) hexacopter to monitor natural phenomena. The IPM's developed thus far were developed on platforms that emulate a satellite environment which use real satellite flight software, real ground software. In addition, science processing software has been developed that perform hyperspectral processing onboard using various parallel processing techniques to enable creation of onboard hyperspectral data products while consuming low power. A cubesat design was developed that is low cost and that is scalable to larger consteallations and thus can provide daily hyperspectral observations for any spot on earth. The design was based on the existing IPM prototypes and metrics that were developed over the past few years and a shrunken IPM that can perform up to 800 Mbps throughput. Thus this constellation of hyperspectral cubesats could be constantly monitoring spectra with spectral angle mappers after Level 0, Level 1 Radiometric Correction, Atmospheric Correction processing. This provides the opportunity daily monitoring of any spot on earth on a daily basis at 30 meter resolution which is not available today.

  4. Hazards and hazard combinations relevant for the safety of nuclear power plants (United States)

    Decker, Kurt; Brinkman, Hans; Raimond, Emmanuel


    The potential of the contemporaneous impact of different, yet causally related, hazardous events and event cascades on nuclear power plants is a major contributor to the overall risk of nuclear installations. In the aftermath of the Fukushima accident, which was caused by a combination of severe ground shaking by an earthquake, an earthquake-triggered tsunami and the disruption of the plants from the electrical grid by a seismically induced landslide, hazard combinations and hazard cascades moved into the focus of nuclear safety research. We therefore developed an exhaustive list of external hazards and hazard combinations which pose potential threats to nuclear installations in the framework of the European project ASAMPSAE (Advanced Safety Assessment: Extended PSA). The project gathers 31 partners from Europe, North Amerika and Japan. The list comprises of exhaustive lists of natural hazards, external man-made hazards, and a cross-correlation matrix of these hazards. The hazard list is regarded comprehensive by including all types of hazards that were previously cited in documents by IAEA, the Western European Nuclear Regulators Association (WENRA), and others. 73 natural hazards and 24 man-made external hazards are included. Natural hazards are grouped into seismotectonic hazards, flooding and hydrological hazards, extreme values of meteorological phenomena, rare meteorological phenomena, biological hazards / infestation, geological hazards, and forest fire / wild fire. The list of external man-made hazards includes industry accidents, military accidents, transportation accidents, pipeline accidents and other man-made external events. The large number of different hazards results in the extremely large number of 5.151 theoretically possible hazard combinations (not considering hazard cascades). In principle all of these combinations are possible to occur by random coincidence except for 82 hazard combinations that - depending on the time scale - are mutually

  5. Measurement of natural radioactivity and radiation hazards for some natural and artificial building materials available in Romania

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Muntean, L.E.; Moldovan, D.V.


    As building materials are known to be the second source regarding high radon concentrations, it is very important to determine the amounts of natural radionuclides from every building material in use. In the present study the most frequently used Romanian natural (sand, gypsum, limestone) and artificial (portland cement, lime, clinker, electrofilter powder, fly ash, cement-lime plaster mortar, cement plaster mortar) building materials were analyzed. The absorbed dose rate and the annual effective dose equivalent rate for people living in dwelling buildings made of these building materials under investigation were also calculated. The analysis was performed with gamma-ray spectrometry, with two hyper-pure germanium detectors. The activity concentrations of natural radionuclides were in the ranges: 5.2-511.8 Bq kg - 21 for 226 Ra; 0.6-92.6 Bq kg -1 for 232 Th and -1 for 40 K, respectively. The radium equivalent activity in the fifty-one (51) samples varied from 9 to 603 Bq kg -1 . By calculating all the radioactivity indices (R aeq , H ext , I α , I yr ) it was found that all the building materials under investigation can be used to erect dwelling buildings. Except for sample SA6, SA7 and SA11 among the natural building materials and sample SG1, SG2, FAH1, CLM1, CM1 among the artificial building materials that are considered hazardous materials when are used in large quantities. (author)

  6. Environmental hazards from natural hydrocarbons seepage: Integrated classification of risk from sediment chemistry, bioavailability and biomarkers responses in sentinel species

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Benedetti, Maura; Gorbi, Stefania; Fattorini, Daniele; D'Errico, Giuseppe; Piva, Francesco; Pacitti, Davide; Regoli, Francesco


    Potential effects of natural emissions of hydrocarbons in the marine environment have been poorly investigated. In this study, a multidisciplinary weight of evidence (WOE) study was carried out on a shallow seepage, integrating sediment chemistry with bioavailability and onset of subcellular responses (biomarkers) in caged eels and mussels. Results from different lines of evidence (LOEs) were elaborated within a quantitative WOE model which, based on logical flowcharts, provide synthetic indices of hazard for each LOE, before their integration in a quantitative risk assessment. Evaluations of different LOEs were not always in accordance and their overall elaboration summarized as Moderate the risk in the seepage area. This study provided first evidence of biological effects in organisms exposed to natural hydrocarbon emissions, confirming the limit of chemical characterization as stand-alone criteria for environmental quality assessment and the utility of multidisciplinary investigations to determine the good environmental status as required by Environmental Directives. -- Highlights: • Hazards from natural seepage were evaluated through a multidisciplinary WOE study. • Caged eels and mussels were chosen as bioindicator organisms. • Evaluations obtained from various LOEs were not always in accordance. • Biological effects of natural hydrocarbons release were demonstrated. • WOE approach could discriminate different levels of hazard in low impacted conditions. -- A multidisciplinary WOE study in a shallow coastal seepage summarized a Moderate level of risk based on integration of sediment chemistry with biological effects in caged organisms

  7. Natural hazards and climate change in Dhaka: future trends, social adaptation and informal dynamics (United States)

    Thiele-Eich, I.; Aßheuer, T.; Simmer, C.; Braun, B.


    Similar to many megacities in the world, Dhaka is regularly threatened by natural hazards. Risks associated with floods and cyclones in particular are expected to increase in the years to come because of global climate change and rapid urbanization. Greater Dhaka is expected to grow from 13.5 million inhabitants in 2007 to 22 million inhabitants by 2025. The vast majority of this growth will take place in informal settlements. Due to the setting of Greater Dhaka in a deltaic plain, the sprawl of slums is primarily taking place in wetlands, swamps and other flood-prone areas. Slum dwellers and informal businesses are vulnerable, but have somehow learned to cope with seasonal floods and developed specific adaptation strategies. An increase of precipitation extremes and tropical cyclones, however, would put considerable stress on the adaptability of the social and economic system. DhakaHazard, a joint research project of the Department of Meteorology at the University of Bonn and the Department of Geography at the University of Cologne, takes up these issues in an interdisciplinary approach. The project, which begun in November 2008, aims to achieve two main objectives: To link analyses of informal social and economic adaptation strategies to models on future climate change and weather extremes. To estimate more accurately the future frequency and magnitude of weather extremes and floods which are crucial for the future adaptability of informal systems. To fulfill these objectives, scientists at the Meteorological Institute are studying the evolution of natural hazards in Bangladesh, while researchers at the Department of Geography are undertaking the task of assessing these hazards from a social point of view. More specifically, the meteorologists are identifying global and regional weather conditions resulting in flooding of the Greater Dhaka region, while possible variations in flood-inducing weather patterns are analyzed by evaluating their frequency and magnitude

  8. FEMA DFIRM Flood Hazard Areas (United States)

    Minnesota Department of Natural Resources — FEMA flood hazard delineations are used by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to designate the Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA) and for insurance rating...

  9. A Competence-Based Science Learning Framework Illustrated through the Study of Natural Hazards and Disaster Risk Reduction (United States)

    Oyao, Sheila G.; Holbrook, Jack; Rannikmäe, Miia; Pagunsan, Marmon M.


    This article proposes a competence-based learning framework for science teaching, applied to the study of "big ideas", in this case to the study of natural hazards and disaster risk reduction (NH&DRR). The framework focuses on new visions of competence, placing emphasis on nurturing connectedness and behavioral actions toward…

  10. Hazard Ranking Methodology for Assessing Health Impacts of Unconventional Natural Gas Development and Production: The Maryland Case Study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meleah D Boyle

    Full Text Available The recent growth of unconventional natural gas development and production (UNGDP has outpaced research on the potential health impacts associated with the process. The Maryland Marcellus Shale Public Health Study was conducted to inform the Maryland Marcellus Shale Safe Drilling Initiative Advisory Commission, State legislators and the Governor about potential public health impacts associated with UNGDP so they could make an informed decision that considers the health and well-being of Marylanders. In this paper, we describe an impact assessment and hazard ranking methodology we used to assess the potential public health impacts for eight hazards associated with the UNGDP process. The hazard ranking included seven metrics: 1 presence of vulnerable populations (e.g. children under the age of 5, individuals over the age of 65, surface owners, 2 duration of exposure, 3 frequency of exposure, 4 likelihood of health effects, 5 magnitude/severity of health effects, 6 geographic extent, and 7 effectiveness of setbacks. Overall public health concern was determined by a color-coded ranking system (low, moderately high, and high that was generated based on the overall sum of the scores for each hazard. We provide three illustrative examples of applying our methodology for air quality and health care infrastructure which were ranked as high concern and for water quality which was ranked moderately high concern. The hazard ranking was a valuable tool that allowed us to systematically evaluate each of the hazards and provide recommendations to minimize the hazards.

  11. On the water hazards in the trans-boundary Kosi River basin (United States)

    Chen, N. Sh.; Hu, G. Sh.; Deng, W.; Khanal, N.; Zhu, Y. H.; Han, D.


    The Kosi River is an important tributary of the Ganges River, which passes through China, Nepal and India. With a basin area of 71 500 km2, the Kosi River has the largest elevation drop in the world (from 8848 m of Mt Everest to 60 m of the Ganges Plain) and covers a broad spectrum of climate, soil, vegetation and socioeconomic zones. The basin suffers from multiple water related hazards including glacial lake outburst, debris flow, landslides, flooding, drought, soil erosion and sedimentation. This paper describes the characteristics of water hazards in the basin, based on the literature review and site investigation covering hydrology, meteorology, geology, geomorphology and socio-economics. Glacial lake outbursts are a huge threat to the local population in the region and they usually further trigger landslides and debris flows. Floods are usually a result of interaction between man-made hydraulic structures and the natural environment. Debris flows are widespread and occur in clusters. Droughts tend to last over long periods and affect vast areas. Rapid population increase, the decline of ecosystems and climate change could further exacerbate various hazards in the region. The paper has proposed a set of mitigating strategies and measures. It is an arduous challenge to implement them in practice. More investigations are needed to fill in the knowledge gaps.

  12. A conceptual approach to the use of Cost Benefit and Multi Criteria Analysis in natural hazard management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. D. Gamper


    Full Text Available Decision-making for protection measures against natural hazards entails major complexities for final decision makers. The issue in question does not only implicate a variety of criteria that need to be considered but also scarce financial resources make the allocation decision a difficult task. Furthermore, these decisions appear to be multidisciplinary in nature. Stakeholders from experts over politicians and the public are among the affected parties in making and dealing with the consequences of such decisions. In order to capture the complexity that arises when incorporating the varieties of interests as well as impacts protection measures have on the environment, the economy and society, transparent and multidisciplinary decision support techniques are needed. This paper looks at how Cost Benefit Analysis (CBA, a tool already applied to decisions concerning protective measures, and Multi Criteria Analysis (MCA, even though new to the field as such but already successfully practiced in other environmental areas, perform according to the abovementioned criteria. A conceptual overview of the methodologies will be given along with a discussion of the respective strengths and weaknesses. Looking at past applications, this overview gives an analysis about the potential of socio economics in its contribution to natural hazard research.

  13. Assessing the indirect effects due to natural hazards on a mesoscale (United States)

    Pfurtscheller, C.; Schwarze, R.


    Measuring indirect economic costs and other effects from natural hazards, especially floods in alpine and other mountainous regions, are a necessary part of a comprehensive economic assessment. Their omission seriously affects the relative economic benefits of structural or non structural measures of flood defence. Surpassing controversial, IO-model-based economic estimates, analysing indirect economic effects lead to the key question of identifying and evaluating the drivers of indirect economic effects and resilience to system effects in the regional economy, i.e. at the meso-level. This investigation takes place for the catastrophic floods in summer 2005 in the provinces of Tyrol and Vorarlberg, Austria, which caused an estimated € 670 Mio direct loss on private and public assets and severe interruptions in lifeline services. The paper starts out with differentiating the concept of indirect economic costs from direct costs, examing different temporal (short vs. long-term) and spatial (macro-, meso- vs. microeconomic) system boundaries. It surveys common theories of economic resilience and vulnerability at the regional economy level. Indirect effects at the regional economy level can be defined as interferences of the economic exchange of goods and services triggered by breakdowns of transport lines and critical production inputs. The extent and persistence of indirect effects of natural hazards is not only by parameters of the extreme event, such as duration and amplitude of the flood, but much more by resilience parameters of the regional economy such as size of enterprises, the network structure (linkages) of the regional economy, availability of insurance and relief funds, and the stock of inventory. These effects can only be dissected by means of expert judgement and event studies. This paper presents the results of a survey conducted among business practioneers, members of chamber of commerce, civil protection agencies to identify and scale the drivers of

  14. Natural hazards and self-organized criticality

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Krenn, R.


    Several natural hazards exhibit power-law behavior on their frequency-size distributions. Self-organized criticality has become a promising candidate that could offer a more in-depth understanding of the origin of temporal and spatial scaling in dissipative nonequilibrium systems. The outcomes of this thesis are presented in three scientific papers followed by a concluding summary and an appendix.In paper (A) we present a semi-phenomenological approach to explain the complex scaling behavior of the Drossel-Schwabl forest-fire model (DS-FFM) in two dimensions. We derive the scaling exponent solely from the scaling exponent of the clusters' accessible perimeter. Furthermore, the unusual transition to an exponential decay is explained both qualitatively and quantitatively. The exponential decay itself could be reproduced at least qualitatively. In paper (B) we extend the DS-FFM towards anthropogenic ignition factors. The main outcomes are an increase of the scaling exponent with decreasing lightning probability as well as a splitting of the partial frequency-size distributions of lightning induced and man made fires. Lightning is identified as the dominant mechanism in the regime of the largest fires. The results could be validated through an analysis of the Canadian Large Fire Database.In paper (C) we obtain an almost complete theory of the Olami-Feder-Christensen (OFC) model's complex spatio-temporal behavior. Synchronization pushes the system towards a critical state and generates the Gutenberg-Richter law. Desynchronization prevents the system from becoming overcritical and generates foreshocks and aftershocks. Our approach also provides a simple explanation of Omori's law. Beyond this, it explains the phenomena of foreshock migration and aftershock diffusion and the occurrence of large earthquakes without any foreshocks. A novel integer algorithm for the numerics is presented in appendix (A).(author) [de

  15. Results of the round table "Impact of natural and man-made hazards on urban areas" (United States)

    Bostenaru-Dan, Maria; Olga Gociman, Cristina; Hostiuc, Constantin; Mihaila, Marina; Gheorghe (Popovici), Diana Alexandra; Anghelache, Mirela Adriana; Dutu, Andreea; Tascu-Stavre, Miroslav


    On Thursday the 6th of November a round table was organised at the Centre of Architectural and Urban Studies of the "Ion Mincu" University of Architecture and Urban Planning on the topic of this session. It included a review of the previous editions, and an outlook to the edition this year. We shared publications, and a publication is in work from the round table itself. The series of round tables at the Centre of Architectural and Urban Studies is an innitiative of Constantin Hostiuc, the secretary general of the centre. This round table was organised by Maria Bostenaru Dan, and moderated by Cristina Olga Gociman, who currently runs a project on a related topic. From the various ways to approach the effects of hazards, up to the disatrous ones, on urban areas, we consider the most suitable the approach to the impact. From the point of view of natural sciences and of the engineering ones this was approached a number of times, and newly social sciences are included as well. The role of planning and design for a better prevention, and even post-disaster intervention is ignored many times though. The goal of the round table was to bring together multidisciplinary approaches (architecture, urban planning, seismology, geography, structural engineering, ecology, communication sciences, art history) on a problem set from this point of view. Discussed topics were: 1. Assessment and mapping methods of the impact of natural hazards on urban areas (preventive, postdisaster) 2. Visualisation and communication techniques of the assessed impact, including GIS, internet, 3D 3. Strategies for the reduction of the impact of natural hazards on urban areas 4. Suitable methods of urban design for the mitigation of the effects of disasters in multihazard case 5. Partnership models among the involved actors in the decision process for disaster mitigaton 6. Urban planning instruments for risc management strategies (ex. master plan) 7. Lessons learned from the relationship between hazard

  16. Assessment And Management Of Natural Hazards And Disasters Along Qena-Safaga Road, Central Eastern Desert, Egypt

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Azab, M.A.


    Hazard assessment studies are necessary to identify the investigated area along Qena-Safaga road, between km 20 - km 30 from Qena City, where extensive damage has constantly been reported. This damage includes, asphalt road, breaking of the potable water pipeline, tilting of tower line and telephone poles, as well as of Safaga-Abu Tartur railroad. These types of damage result from tectonic activity around the Qena-Safaga district. The structural and seismic maps are used to interpret and evaluate the deep-seated structures and the tectonic setting of the study area. Strong ground motion is the most important phenomenon of natural hazard. It has an effect on the nature, human life and man-made structures. Geographic Information Systems and Remote Sensing are useful tools in disaster management for the study area. These automated tools are used for the storage, analysis and visualization all geological and geophysical data of the investigated area to the decision support. Also, by using the Landsat image acquired in 2001 and Aerial photograph dated 1955 reveals that, the spatial deformation of the recent surface features has been estimated during 46 years

  17. 2017 One‐year seismic‐hazard forecast for the central and eastern United States from induced and natural earthquakes (United States)

    Petersen, Mark D.; Mueller, Charles; Moschetti, Morgan P.; Hoover, Susan M.; Shumway, Allison; McNamara, Daniel E.; Williams, Robert; Llenos, Andrea L.; Ellsworth, William L.; Rubinstein, Justin L.; McGarr, Arthur F.; Rukstales, Kenneth S.


    We produce a one‐year 2017 seismic‐hazard forecast for the central and eastern United States from induced and natural earthquakes that updates the 2016 one‐year forecast; this map is intended to provide information to the public and to facilitate the development of induced seismicity forecasting models, methods, and data. The 2017 hazard model applies the same methodology and input logic tree as the 2016 forecast, but with an updated earthquake catalog. We also evaluate the 2016 seismic‐hazard forecast to improve future assessments. The 2016 forecast indicated high seismic hazard (greater than 1% probability of potentially damaging ground shaking in one year) in five focus areas: Oklahoma–Kansas, the Raton basin (Colorado/New Mexico border), north Texas, north Arkansas, and the New Madrid Seismic Zone. During 2016, several damaging induced earthquakes occurred in Oklahoma within the highest hazard region of the 2016 forecast; all of the 21 moment magnitude (M) ≥4 and 3 M≥5 earthquakes occurred within the highest hazard area in the 2016 forecast. Outside the Oklahoma–Kansas focus area, two earthquakes with M≥4 occurred near Trinidad, Colorado (in the Raton basin focus area), but no earthquakes with M≥2.7 were observed in the north Texas or north Arkansas focus areas. Several observations of damaging ground‐shaking levels were also recorded in the highest hazard region of Oklahoma. The 2017 forecasted seismic rates are lower in regions of induced activity due to lower rates of earthquakes in 2016 compared with 2015, which may be related to decreased wastewater injection caused by regulatory actions or by a decrease in unconventional oil and gas production. Nevertheless, the 2017 forecasted hazard is still significantly elevated in Oklahoma compared to the hazard calculated from seismicity before 2009.

  18. Site characterization criteria (DOE-STD-1022-94) for natural phenomena hazards at DOE sites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chen, J.C.; Ueng, T.S.; Boissonnade, A.C.


    This paper briefly summarizes requirements of site characterization for Natural Phenomena Hazards (NPH) at DOE sites. In order to comply with DOE Order 5480.28, site characterization criteria has been developed to provide site-specific information needed for development of NPH assessment criteria. Appropriate approaches are outlined to ensure that the current state-of-the-art methodologies and procedures are used in the site characterization. General and detailed site characterization requirements are provided in the areas of meteorology, hydrology, geology, seismology and geotechnical studies

  19. Multihazard risk analysis and disaster planning for emergency services as a basis for efficient provision in the case of natural hazards - case study municipality of Au, Austria (United States)

    Maltzkait, Anika; Pfurtscheller, Clemens


    Multihazard risk analysis and disaster planning for emergency services as a basis for efficient provision in the case of natural hazards - case study municipality of Au, Austria A. Maltzkait (1) & C. Pfurtscheller (1) (1) Institute for Interdisciplinary Mountain Research (IGF), Austrian Academy of Sciences, Innsbruck, Austria The extreme flood events of 2002, 2005 and 2013 in Austria underlined the importance of local emergency services being able to withstand and reduce the adverse impacts of natural hazards. Although for legal reasons municipal emergency and crisis management plans exist in Austria, they mostly do not cover risk analyses of natural hazards - a sound, comparable assessment to identify and evaluate risks. Moreover, total losses and operational emergencies triggered by natural hazards have increased in recent decades. Given sparse public funds, objective budget decisions are needed to ensure the efficient provision of operating resources, like personnel, vehicles and equipment in the case of natural hazards. We present a case study of the municipality of Au, Austria, which was hardly affected during the 2005 floods. Our approach is primarily based on a qualitative risk analysis, combining existing hazard plans, GIS data, field mapping and data on operational efforts of the fire departments. The risk analysis includes a map of phenomena discussed in a workshop with local experts and a list of risks as well as a risk matrix prepared at that workshop. On the basis for the exact requirements for technical and non-technical mitigation measures for each natural hazard risk were analysed in close collaboration with members of the municipal operation control and members of the local emergency services (fire brigade, Red Cross). The measures includes warning, evacuation and, technical interventions with heavy equipment and personnel. These results are used, first, to improve the municipal emergency and crisis management plan by providing a risk map, and a

  20. Identification of natural hazards and classification of urban areas by TOPSIS model (case study: Bandar Abbas city, Iran

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rasool Mahdavi Najafabadi


    Full Text Available In this paper, among multi-criteria models for complex decision-making and multiple-attribute models for assigning the most preferable choice, the technique for order preference by similarity ideal solution (TOPSIS is implied. The main objective of this research is to identify potential natural hazards in Bandar Abbas city, Iran, using TOPSIS model, which is based on an analytical hierarchy process structure. A set of 12 relevant geomorphologic parameters, including earthquake frequency, distance from the earthquake epicentre, number of faults, flood, talus creep, landslide, land subsidence, tide, hurricane and tidal wave, dust storms with external source, wind erosion and sea level fluctuations are considered to quantify inputs of the model. The outputs of this study indicate that one region, among three assessed regions, has the maximum potential occurrence of natural hazards, while it has been urbanized at a greater rate compared to other regions. Furthermore, based on Delphi method, the earthquake frequency and the landslide are the most and the least dangerous phenomena, respectively.

  1. Special Issue "Impact of Natural Hazards on Urban Areas and Infrastructure" in the Bulletin of Earthquake Engineering (United States)

    Bostenaru Dan, M.


    This special issue includes selected papers on the topic of earthquake impact from the sessions held in 2004 in Nice, France and in 2005 in Vienna, Austria at the first and respectivelly the second European Geosciences Union General Assembly. Since its start in 1999, in the Hague, Netherlands, the hazard of earthquakes has been the most popular of the session. The respective calls in 2004 was for: Nature's forces including earthquakes, floods, landslides, high winds and volcanic eruptions can inflict losses to urban settlements and man-made structures such as infrastructure. In Europe, recent years have seen such significant losses from earthquakes in south and south-eastern Europe, floods in central Europe, and wind storms in western Europe. Meanwhile, significant progress has been made in understanding disasters. Several scientific fields contribute to a holistic approach in the evaluation of capacities, vulnerabilities and hazards, the main factors on mitigating urban disasters due to natural hazards. An important part of the session is devoted to assessment of earthquake shaking and loss scenarios, including both physical damage and human causalities. Early warning and rapid damage evaluation are of utmost importance for addressing the safety of many essential facilities, for emergency management of events and for disaster response. In case of earthquake occurrence strong motion networks, data processing and interpretation lead to preliminary estimation (scenarios) of geographical distribution of damages. Factual information on inflicted damage, like those obtained from shaking maps or aerial imagery permit a confrontation with simulation maps of damage in order to define a more accurate picture of the overall losses. Most recent developments towards quantitative and qualitative simulation of natural hazard impacts on urban areas, which provide decision-making support for urban disaster management, and success stories of and lessons learned from disaster

  2. Geotechnical hazards from large earthquakes and heavy rainfalls

    CERN Document Server

    Kazama, Motoki; Lee, Wei


    This book is a collection of papers presented at the International Workshop on Geotechnical Natural Hazards held July 12–15, 2014, in Kitakyushu, Japan. The workshop was the sixth in the series of Japan–Taiwan Joint Workshops on Geotechnical Hazards from Large Earthquakes and Heavy Rainfalls, held under the auspices of the Asian Technical Committee No. 3 on Geotechnology for Natural Hazards of the International Society for Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering. It was co-organized by the Japanese Geotechnical Society and the Taiwanese Geotechnical Society. The contents of this book focus on geotechnical and natural hazard-related issues in Asia such as earthquakes, tsunami, rainfall-induced debris flows, slope failures, and landslides. The book contains the latest information and mitigation technology on earthquake- and rainfall-induced geotechnical natural hazards. By dissemination of the latest state-of-the-art research in the area, the information contained in this book will help researchers, des...

  3. A framework for profiling the characteristics of risk governance in diverse European natural hazard contexts (United States)

    Walker, G.; Tweed, F.


    Risks are always managed within a broader context of relationships between governments, citizens, civil society and private business; these relationships shift and evolve over time with changing political currents and economic conditions. In Europe over the past 20 years or so, there has been a move away from government towards a broader practice of 'governance', a shift that is as relevant to the handling of natural hazards as it is to other societal concerns such as housing, economic regeneration or transport. Key characteristics of this change include the emergence of multi-level governance processes and the 'hollowing out' of the nation state; moves away from the exercise of centralised authority towards the involvement and collaboration of a multiplicity of actors specific to each policy area; the creation of new forms of authority and control; and changing distributions of responsibilities between the state and other actors. However, the extent to which these shifts have taken place across the full diversity of European national contexts and can be observed specifically in relation to the governance of natural hazards is open to analysis and debate. In this paper, we propose a framework for profiling risk governance approaches in relation to key characteristics identified in both the general governance literature and in more specific work on risk governance. This framework can be flexibly applied in relation to a specific hazard and national/regional context and enables qualitative profiling across a spectrum of nine governance characteristics. Past trends and likely future changes can also be represented. We discuss the formulation of this framework as well as illustrating how it can be used in a process of discussion and debate about risk governance issues. We provide examples of the ways in which the profiling approach can enable comparison between risk governance contexts and approaches, and how it can be used in a variety of potential settings.

  4. Hazard interactions and interaction networks (cascades) within multi-hazard methodologies (United States)

    Gill, Joel C.; Malamud, Bruce D.


    This paper combines research and commentary to reinforce the importance of integrating hazard interactions and interaction networks (cascades) into multi-hazard methodologies. We present a synthesis of the differences between multi-layer single-hazard approaches and multi-hazard approaches that integrate such interactions. This synthesis suggests that ignoring interactions between important environmental and anthropogenic processes could distort management priorities, increase vulnerability to other spatially relevant hazards or underestimate disaster risk. In this paper we proceed to present an enhanced multi-hazard framework through the following steps: (i) description and definition of three groups (natural hazards, anthropogenic processes and technological hazards/disasters) as relevant components of a multi-hazard environment, (ii) outlining of three types of interaction relationship (triggering, increased probability, and catalysis/impedance), and (iii) assessment of the importance of networks of interactions (cascades) through case study examples (based on the literature, field observations and semi-structured interviews). We further propose two visualisation frameworks to represent these networks of interactions: hazard interaction matrices and hazard/process flow diagrams. Our approach reinforces the importance of integrating interactions between different aspects of the Earth system, together with human activity, into enhanced multi-hazard methodologies. Multi-hazard approaches support the holistic assessment of hazard potential and consequently disaster risk. We conclude by describing three ways by which understanding networks of interactions contributes to the theoretical and practical understanding of hazards, disaster risk reduction and Earth system management. Understanding interactions and interaction networks helps us to better (i) model the observed reality of disaster events, (ii) constrain potential changes in physical and social vulnerability

  5. Monitoring the degradation of physical properties and fire hazards of high-impact polystyrene composite with different ageing time in natural environments. (United States)

    Wang, Bibo; Zhang, Yan; Tao, Youji; Zhou, Xia; Song, Lei; Jie, Ganxin; Hu, Yuan


    The current study aims at monitoring the role of the different natural environments on the physical properties and fire hazards of HIPS composites ageing in Turpan and Qionghai. The results indicated that the chromatic aberration and degradation of surface appearance intensified with the increasing ageing time. More flame retardants migrated and were eroded for HIPS composites ageing in Qionghai than those ageing in Turpan, which was caused by the combination of sunlight, high temperature and rainwater in Qionghai. After degradation in the natural environments, the HIPS composites possessed the lower thermal stability and char residues, more toxic gases release, higher peak heat release rate and fire hazard. For example, the peak heat release rate in Qionghai increased by 88.9%, which is much higher than that of in Turpan (55.6%). Moreover, the tensile strength and elongation at break decreased by 46% and 59% for HIPS composites ageing in Turpan and reduced by 53% and 67% for HIPS composites aged in Qionghai, respectively. The results demonstrate that more serious degradation of physical properties and higher fire hazard for HIPS composites ageing in Qionghai than those in Turpan due to the different natural ageing environments. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Ethical issues in forecasting of natural hazards (United States)

    Tinti, Stefano


    Natural hazards have by definition a large impact on the society and, therefore, since the beginning of science one of the major aspiration of mankind has been the prediction of natural calamities in the attempt to avoid or to mitigate their effects. In modern societies where science and technology have gained a foundational role, forecasts and predictions have become part of the every-day life and may also influence state policies and economic development. And in parallel with the growing importance of forecasting, even ethical problems for forecasters and for forecasters communities have started to appear. In this work two of the many geo-ethical issues are considered mostly: 1) how to cope with uncertainties that are inherently associated with any forecast statement; 2) how to handle predictions in scientific journals and scientific conferences The former issue is mainly related to the impact of predictions on the general public and on managers and operators in the civil protection field. Forecasters operate in specific contexts that 1) may change from country to country, depending on the local adopted best practices, but also, which is more constraining, on the local legal regulations and laws; 2) may change from discipline to discipline according to the development of the specific knowhow and the range of the forecast (from minutes to centuries) The second issue has to do with the communication of the scientific results on predictions and on prediction methods to the audience mainly composed of scientists, and involves one of the basic elements of science. In principle, scientists should use scientific communication means (papers in scientific journals, conferences, …) to illustrate results that are sound and certain, or the methods by means of which they conduct their research. But scientists involved in predictions have inherently to do with uncertainties, and, since there is no common agreement on how to deal with them, there is the risk that scientific

  7. Residential and service-population exposure to multiple natural hazards in the Mount Hood region of Clackamas County, Oregon (United States)

    Mathie, Amy M.; Wood, Nathan


    The objective of this research is to document residential and service-population exposure to natural hazards in the rural communities of Clackamas County, Oregon, near Mount Hood. The Mount Hood region of Clackamas County has a long history of natural events that have impacted its small, tourism-based communities. To support preparedness and emergency-management planning in the region, a geospatial analysis of population exposure was used to determine the number and type of residents and service populations in flood-, wildfire-, and volcano-related hazard zones. Service populations are a mix of residents and tourists temporarily benefitting from local services, such as retail, education, or recreation. In this study, service population includes day-use visitors at recreational sites, overnight visitors at hotels and resorts, children at schools, and community-center visitors. Although the heavily-forested, rural landscape suggests few people are in the area, there are seasonal peaks of thousands of visitors to the region. “Intelligent” dasymetric mapping efforts using 30-meter resolution land-cover imagery and U.S. Census Bureau data proved ineffective at adequately capturing either the spatial distribution or magnitude of population at risk. Consequently, an address-point-based hybrid dasymetric methodology of assigning population to the physical location of buildings mapped with a global positioning system was employed. The resulting maps of the population (1) provide more precise spatial distributions for hazard-vulnerability assessments, (2) depict appropriate clustering due to higher density structures, such as apartment complexes and multi-unit commercial buildings, and (3) provide new information on the spatial distribution and temporal variation of people utilizing services within the study area. Estimates of population exposure to flooding, wildfire, and volcanic hazards were determined by using overlay analysis in a geographic information system

  8. Assessment of radiological hazards of naturally occurring radioactive materials in cement industry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Aslam, M.; Gul, R.; Ara, T.; Hussain, M.


    A study on the radiological hazard in Portland cement due to the presence of naturally occurring radioactive materials is being carried out. The Portland cement manufactured in the Islamabad/Rawalpindi region of Pakistan, intermediate products (clinker) and the various raw materials which compose the product have been analysed for 226 Ra, 232 Th and 40 K using a gamma spectrometry system with a N-type high-purity germanium detector of 80 % relative efficiency. From the measured gamma ray spectra, specific activities were determined. The mean values of the total specific activity of 226 Ra, 232 Th and 40 K are 34.2±11.9, 29.1±3.6 and 295.1±66.9 Bq kg -1 , respectively in Portland cement, 28.4±8.7, 11.3±1.7 and 63.1±17.3 Bq kg -1 , respectively in lime stone, 8.2±1.9, 16.2±3.9 and 187.7±53.2 Bq kg -1 , respectively in gypsum, 34.7±13.1, 41.2±6.7 and 187.6±17.2 Bq kg -1 , respectively in clay, 41.1±11.8, 39.3±6.9 and 195.1±29.2 Bq kg -1 , respectively in laterite and 51.1±18.2, 23.2±1.2 and 258.4±15.3 Bq kg -1 , respectively in clinker. The radium equivalent activities (Ra eq ), external hazard index (H ex ), internal hazard index (H in ), absorbed dose rate in air (D) and annual effective dose rate (E eff ) were also determined. The measured activity concentrations for these radio nuclides and radiological indices were compared with the reported national and international data. All these measured values are comparable with the worldwide data reported in UNSCEAR publications. (authors)

  9. HORA - an Austrian platform for natural hazards (United States)

    Hlatky, T.


    HORA - an Austrian platform for natural hazards as a new way in risk communication One initiatives launched in Austria demonstrate that public participation not only bears the risk of a partial transfer of responsibility by the authorities; it may above all prepare the ground for entirely new approaches and create new links. The recent installation of the first internet risk zoning system in Austria underscores the importance of involving private parties in natural disaster protection. This public-private partnership (PPP) between the Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, Environment and Water Management (BMLFUW) and the Austrian Insurance Association (VVO) was launched in the wake of the 2002 flood disaster. The first project phase, the Austrian flood risk zoning system called HORA (screenshot see fig. 1), has now been accessible on the Web since 1st June 2006. In accordance with a risk partnership concluded between federal government, insurance companies and private parties, the project initiators seek to offer the public a preliminary risk assessment tool for evaluation of their home, industrial enterprise, of infrastructure. Digital risk maps shall provide information on 30-year, 100-year and 200-year flood events as they occur alongside the 26.000-km-long domestic river network. The probability with which a certain block of land is immersed in water during a flood event can be calculated by means of hydraulic engineering methods. These have traditionally relied on statistical figures, which are known to be very inaccurate, especially when major events such as flooding are concerned. The Vienna University of Technology (TU) (Institute of Hydraulic and Water Resources Engineering) has dedicated many years to developing more accurate, process oriented risk assessment techniques. The starting points was to identify different flood-triggering processes and to divide them into specific categories as long-duration rainfalls, short-duration rainfalls, storms

  10. Impact-generated Tsunamis: An Over-rated Hazard (United States)

    Melosh, H. J.


    A number of authors have suggested that oceanic waves (tsunami) created by the impact of relatively small asteroids into the Earth's oceans might cause widespread devastation to coastal cities. If correct, this suggests that asteroids > 100 m in diameter may pose a serious hazard to humanity and could require a substantial expansion of the current efforts to identify earth-crossing asteroids > 1 km in diameter. The debate on this hazard was recently altered by the release of a document previously inaccessible to the scientific community. In 1968 the US Office of Naval Research commissioned a summary of several decades of research into the hazard proposed by waves generated by nuclear explosions in the ocean. Authored by tsunami expert William Van Dorn, this 173-page report entitled Handbook of Explosion-Generated Water Waves affords new insight into the process of impact wave formation, propagation, and run up onto the shoreline.

  11. List of external hazards to be considered in ASAMPSA-E

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Decker, Kurt; Brinkman, Hans


    The current report includes an exhaustive list of external hazards posing potential threats to nuclear installations. The list comprises of both, natural and man-made external hazards. Also, a cross correlation matrix of the hazards is presented. The list is the starting point for the hazard analysis process in Level 1 PSA as outlined by IAEA (2010; SSG-3) and the definition of design basis as required by WENRA (2014; Reference Levels for Existing Reactors). The list is regarded comprehensive by including all types of hazards that were previously cited in documents by IAEA and WENRA-RHWG. 73 natural hazards (N1 to N73) and 24 man-made external hazards (M1 to M24) are included. Natural hazards are grouped into seismo-tectonic hazards, flooding and hydrological hazards, extreme values of meteorological phenomena, rare meteorological phenomena, biological hazards / infestation, geological hazards, and forest fire. The list of external man-made hazards includes industry accidents, military accidents, transportation accidents, pipeline accidents and other man-made external events. The dataset further contains information on hazard correlations. 577 correlations between individual hazards are identified and shown in a cross-correlation chart. Correlations discriminate between: (1) Causally connected hazards (cause-effect relation) where one hazard (e.g., liquefaction) may be caused by another hazard (e.g., earthquake); or where one hazard (e.g., high wind) is a prerequisite for a correlated hazard (e.g., storm surge). (authors)

  12. UAV-based Natural Hazard Management in High-Alpine Terrain - Case Studies from Austria (United States)

    Sotier, Bernadette; Adams, Marc; Lechner, Veronika


    Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) have become a standard tool for geodata collection, as they allow conducting on-demand mapping missions in a flexible, cost-effective manner at an unprecedented level of detail. Easy-to-use, high-performance image matching software make it possible to process the collected aerial images to orthophotos and 3D-terrain models. Such up-to-date geodata have proven to be an important asset in natural hazard management: Processes like debris flows, avalanches, landslides, fluvial erosion and rock-fall can be detected and quantified; damages can be documented and evaluated. In the Alps, these processes mostly originate in remote areas, which are difficult and hazardous to access, thus presenting a challenging task for RPAS data collection. In particular, the problems include finding suitable landing and piloting-places, dealing with bad or no GPS-signals and the installation of ground control points (GCP) for georeferencing. At the BFW, RPAS have been used since 2012 to aid natural hazard management of various processes, of which three case studies are presented below. The first case study deals with the results from an attempt to employ UAV-based multi-spectral remote sensing to monitor the state of natural hazard protection forests. Images in the visible and near-infrared (NIR) band were collected using modified low-cost cameras, combined with different optical filters. Several UAV-flights were performed in the 72 ha large study site in 2014, which lies in the Wattental, Tyrol (Austria) between 1700 and 2050 m a.s.l., where the main tree species are stone pine and mountain pine. The matched aerial images were analysed using different UAV-specific vitality indices, evaluating both single- and dual-camera UAV-missions. To calculate the mass balance of a debris flow in the Tyrolean Halltal (Austria), an RPAS flight was conducted in autumn 2012. The extreme alpine environment was challenging for both the mission and the evaluation of the aerial

  13. Natural radioactivity in some building materials and assessment of the associated radiation hazards

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kasumovic, Amira; Hankic, Ema; Kasic, Amela; Adrovic, Feriz [Tuzla Univ. (Bosnia and Herzegovina). Dept. of Physics


    The results of the specific activities of {sup 232}Th, {sup 226}Ra and {sup 40}K measured in samples of commonly used building materials in Bosnia and Herzegovina are presented. Measurements were performed by gamma-ray spectrometer with coaxial HPGe detector. The surface radon exhalation and mass exhalation rates for selected building materials were also measured. The determined values of specific activities were in range from 3.16 ± 0.81 Bq kg{sup -1} to 64.79 ± 6.16 Bq kg{sup -1} for {sup 232}Th, from 2.46 ± 0.95 Bq kg{sup -1} to 53.89 ± 3.67 Bq kg{sup -1} for {sup 226}Ra and from 28.44 ± 7.28 Bq kg{sup -1} to 557.30 ± 93.38 Bq kg{sup -1} for {sup 40}K. The radium equivalent activity, the activity concentration index, the external and internal hazard indices as well as the absorbed dose rate in indoor air and the corresponding annual effective dose, due to gamma-ray emission from the radioactive nuclides in the building material, were evaluated in order to assess the radiation hazards for people. The measured specific activities of the natural radioactive nuclides in all investigated building materials were compared with the published results for building materials from other European countries. It can be noted that the results from this study are similar to the data for building materials from neighbouring countries and for building materials used in the EU Member States. The radiological hazard parameters of the building materials were all within the recommended limits for safety use.

  14. A review on applicability of naturally available adsorbents for the removal of hazardous dyes from aqueous waste. (United States)

    Sharma, Pankaj; Kaur, Harleen; Sharma, Monika; Sahore, Vishal


    The effluent water of many industries, such as textiles, leather, paper, printing, cosmetics, etc., contains large amount of hazardous dyes. There is huge number of treatment processes as well as adsorbent which are available for the processing of this effluent water-containing dye content. The applicability of naturally available low cast and eco-friendly adsorbents, for the removal of hazardous dyes from aqueous waste by adsorption treatment, has been reviewed. In this review paper, we have provided a compiled list of low-cost, easily available, safe to handle, and easy-to-dispose-off adsorbents. These adsorbents have been classified into five different categories on the basis of their state of availability: (1) waste materials from agriculture and industry, (2) fruit waste, (3) plant waste, (4) natural inorganic materials, and (5) bioadsorbents. Some of the treated adsorbents have shown good adsorption capacities for methylene blue, congo red, crystal violet, rhodamine B, basic red, etc., but this adsorption process is highly pH dependent, and the pH of the medium plays an important role in the treatment process. Thus, in this review paper, we have made some efforts to discuss the role of pH in the treatment of wastewater.

  15. Natural radioactivity (226Ra, 232Th and 40K) and assessment of radiological hazards in the Kestanbol granitoid, Turkey. (United States)

    Canbaz, Buket; Cam, N Füsun; Yaprak, Günseli; Candan, Osman


    The surveys of natural gamma-emitting radionuclides in rocks and soils from the Ezine plutonic area were conducted during 2007. Direct dose measurement using a survey meter was carried out simultaneously. The present study, which is part of the survey, analysed the activity concentrations of (238)U, (232)Th and (40)K in granitoid samples from all over the region by HPGe gamma spectrometry. The activity concentrations of (226)Ra ranged from 94 to 637 Bq kg(-1), those of (232)Th ranged from 120 to 601 Bq kg(-1)and those of (40)K ranged from 1074 to 1527 Bq kg(-1) in the analysed rock samples from different parts of the pluton. To evaluate the radiological hazard of the natural radioactivity in the samples, the absorbed dose rate (D), the annual effective dose rate, the radium equivalent activity (Ra(eq)) and the external (H(ex)) hazard index were calculated according to the UNSCEAR 2000 report. The thorium-to-uranium concentration ratios were also estimated.

  16. Marine natural hazards in coastal zone: observations, analysis and modelling (Plinius Medal Lecture) (United States)

    Didenkulova, Ira


    Giant surface waves approaching the coast frequently cause extensive coastal flooding, destruction of coastal constructions and loss of lives. Such waves can be generated by various phenomena: strong storms and cyclones, underwater earthquakes, high-speed ferries, aerial and submarine landslides. The most famous examples of such events are the catastrophic tsunami in the Indian Ocean, which occurred on 26 December 2004 and hurricane Katrina (28 August 2005) in the Atlantic Ocean. The huge storm in the Baltic Sea on 9 January 2005, which produced unexpectedly long waves in many areas of the Baltic Sea and the influence of unusually high surge created by long waves from high-speed ferries, should also be mentioned as examples of regional marine natural hazards connected with extensive runup of certain types of waves. The processes of wave shoaling and runup for all these different marine natural hazards (tsunami, coastal freak waves, ship waves) are studied based on rigorous solutions of nonlinear shallow-water theory. The key and novel results presented here are: i) parameterization of basic formulas for extreme runup characteristics for bell-shape waves, showing that they weakly depend on the initial wave shape, which is usually unknown in real sea conditions; ii) runup analysis of periodic asymmetric waves with a steep front, as such waves are penetrating inland over large distances and with larger velocities than symmetric waves; iii) statistical analysis of irregular wave runup demonstrating that wave nonlinearity nearshore does not influence on the probability distribution of the velocity of the moving shoreline and its moments, and influences on the vertical displacement of the moving shoreline (runup). Wave runup on convex beaches and in narrow bays, which allow abnormal wave amplification is also discussed. Described analytical results are used for explanation of observed extreme runup of tsunami, freak (sneaker) waves and ship waves on different coasts

  17. NOAA Weather Radio - All Hazards (United States)

    Non-Zero All Hazards Logo Emergency Alert Description Event Codes Fact Sheet FAQ Organization Search -event information for all types of hazards: weather (e.g., tornadoes, floods), natural (e.g Management or Preparedness, civil defense, police or mayor/commissioner sets up linkages to send messages on

  18. The KULTURisk Regional Risk Assessment methodology for water-related natural hazards - Part 1: Physical-environmental assessment (United States)

    Ronco, P.; Gallina, V.; Torresan, S.; Zabeo, A.; Semenzin, E.; Critto, A.; Marcomini, A.


    In recent years, the frequency of catastrophes induced by natural hazard has increased and flood events in particular have been recognized as one of the most threatening water-related disasters. Severe floods have occurred in Europe over the last decade causing loss of life, displacement of people and heavy economic losses. Flood disasters are growing as a consequence of many factors, both climatic and non-climatic. Indeed, the current increase of water-related disasters can be mainly attributed to the increase of exposure (increase elements potentially at risk in floodplains area) and vulnerability (i.e. economic, social, geographic, cultural, and physical/environmental characteristics of the exposure). Besides these factors, the strong effect of climate change is projected to radically modify the usual pattern of the hydrological cycle by intensifying the frequency and severity of flood events both at local, regional and global scale. Within this context, it becomes urgent and dramatically relevant the need of promoting and developing effective and pro-active strategies, tools and actions which allow to assess and (possibly) to reduce the flood risks that threats different relevant receptors. Several methodologies to assess the risk posed by water-related natural hazards have been proposed so far, but very few of them can be adopted to implement the last European Flood Directive (FD). The present study is intended to introduce and present a state-of-the-art Regional Risk Assessment (RRA) methodology to evaluate the benefits of risk prevention in terms of reduced environmental risks due to floods. The methodology, developed within the recently phased out FP7-KULTURisk Project (Knowledge-based approach to develop a cULTUre of Risk prevention - KR) is flexible and can be adapted to different case studies (i.e. large rivers, alpine/mountain catchments, urban areas and coastal areas) and spatial scales (i.e. from the large river to the urban scale). The FD compliant

  19. Observations and recommendations regarding landslide hazards related to the January 13, 2001 M-7.6 El Salvador earthquake (United States)

    Jibson, Randall W.; Crone, Anthony J.


    The January 13, 2001 earthquake (M-7.6) off the coast of El Salvador triggered widespread damaging landslides in many parts of the El Salvador. In the aftermath of the earthquake, the Salvadoran government requested technical assistance through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID); USAID, in turn, requested help from technical experts in landslide hazards from the U.S. Geological Survey. In response to that request, we arrived in El Salvador on January 31, 2001 and worked with USAID personnel and Salvadoran agency counterparts in visiting landslide sites and evaluating present and potential hazards. A preliminary, unofficial report was prepared at the end of our trip (February 9) to provide immediate information and assistance to interested agencies and parties. The current report is an updated and somewhat expanded version of that unofficial report. Because of the brief nature of this report, conclusions and recommendations contained herein should be considered tentative and may be revised in the future.

  20. Real-time decision support in the face of emerging natural hazard events

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Anders, Annett

    and losses. Motivated by these factors, the present thesis aims at developing a framework for the decision support system for real-time decision making in emerging natural hazard events. The thesis also demonstrates the implementation of the developed framework to illustrate its use and advantages...... turbines, agricultural facilities and offshore platforms. Operators of these facilities are often required to make decisions regarding the continued operations of their facilities in extreme storm events. These decisions, which in the present thesis are called real-time decisions, are often made by a small...... number of people in extremely stressful situations, ad-hoc relying on personal experiences of decision makers. On the other hand, recent advancements of information technology potentially make it possible for decision makers to access various types of information in real-time. Remarkable examples...

  1. Natural phenomena risk analysis - an approach for the tritium facilities 5480.23 SAR natural phenomena hazards accident analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cappucci, A.J. Jr.; Joshi, J.R.; Long, T.A.; Taylor, R.P.


    A Tritium Facilities (TF) Safety Analysis Report (SAR) has been developed which is compliant with DOE Order 5480.23. The 5480.23 SAR upgrades and integrates the safety documentation for the TF into a single SAR for all of the tritium processing buildings. As part of the TF SAR effort, natural phenomena hazards (NPH) were analyzed. A cost effective strategy was developed using a team approach to take advantage of limited resources and budgets. During development of the Hazard and Accident Analysis for the 5480.23 SAR, a strategy was required to allow maximum use of existing analysis and to develop a cost effective graded approach for any new analysis in identifying and analyzing the bounding accidents for the TF. This approach was used to effectively identify and analyze NPH for the TF. The first part of the strategy consisted of evaluating the current SAR for the RTF to determine what NPH analysis could be used in the new combined 5480.23 SAR. The second part was to develop a method for identifying and analyzing NPH events for the older facilities which took advantage of engineering judgment, was cost effective, and followed a graded approach. The second part was especially challenging because of the lack of documented existing analysis considered adequate for the 5480.23 SAR and a limited budget for SAR development and preparation. This paper addresses the strategy for the older facilities

  2. Numerical Modelling of Extreme Natural Hazards in the Russian Seas (United States)

    Arkhipkin, Victor; Dobrolyubov, Sergey; Korablina, Anastasia; Myslenkov, Stanislav; Surkova, Galina


    Storm surges and extreme waves are severe natural sea hazards. Due to the almost complete lack of natural observations of these phenomena in the Russian seas (Caspian, Black, Azov, Baltic, White, Barents, Okhotsk, Kara), especially about their formation, development and destruction, they have been studied using numerical simulation. To calculate the parameters of wind waves for the seas listed above, except the Barents Sea, the spectral model SWAN was applied. For the Barents and Kara seas we used WAVEWATCH III model. Formation and development of storm surges were studied using ADCIRC model. The input data for models - bottom topography, wind, atmospheric pressure and ice cover. In modeling of surges in the White and Barents seas tidal level fluctuations were used. They have been calculated from 16 harmonic constant obtained from global atlas tides FES2004. Wind, atmospheric pressure and ice cover was taken from the NCEP/NCAR reanalysis for the period from 1948 to 2010, and NCEP/CFSR reanalysis for the period from 1979 to 2015. In modeling we used both regular and unstructured grid. The wave climate of the Caspian, Black, Azov, Baltic and White seas was obtained. Also the extreme wave height possible once in 100 years has been calculated. The statistics of storm surges for the White, Barents and Azov Seas were evaluated. The contribution of wind and atmospheric pressure in the formation of surges was estimated. The technique of climatic forecast frequency of storm synoptic situations was developed and applied for every sea. The research was carried out with financial support of the RFBR (grant 16-08-00829).

  3. Multi-hazard assessment using GIS in the urban areas: Case study - Banja Luka municipality, B&H

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tošić Radislav


    Full Text Available The research presents a techniques for natural hazard assessment using GIS and cartographic approaches with multi-hazard mapping in urban communities, because natural hazards are a multi-dimensional phenomena which have a spatial component. Therefore the use of Remote Sensing and GIS has an important function and become essential in urban multi-hazard assessment. The first aim of this research was to determine the geographical distributions of the major types of natural hazards in the study area. Seismic hazards, landslides, rockfalls, floods, torrential floods, and excessive erosion are the most significant natural hazards within the territory of Banja Luka Municipality. Areas vulnerable to some of these natural hazards were singled out using analytical maps. Based on these analyses, an integral map of the natural hazards of the study area was created using multi-hazard assessment and the total vulnerability was determined by overlapping the results. The detailed analysis, through the focused research within the most vulnerable areas in the study area will highlight the administrative units (urban centres and communes that are vulnerable to various types of natural hazard. The results presented in this article are the first multi-hazard assessment and the first version of the integral map of natural hazards in the Republic of Srpska.

  4. Infrastructure Systems Interdependencies and Risk Informed Decision Making (RIDM: Impact Scenario Analysis of Infrastructure Risks Induced by Natural, Technological and Intentional Hazards

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rudolph Frederick Stapelberg


    Full Text Available This paper reviews current research into infrastructure systems interdependencies with regard to safesty risks induced by natural, technological and intentional hazards. The paper further considers risk informed decision-making.

  5. A search for applications of Fiber Optics in early warning systems for natural hazards. (United States)

    Wenker, Koen; Bogaard, Thom


    In order to reduce the societal risk associated with natural hazards novel technologies could help to advance in early warning systems. In our study we evaluate the use of multi-sensor technologies as possible early-warning systems for landslides and man-made structures, and the integration of the information in a simple Decision Support System (DSS). In this project, particular attention will be paid to some new possibilities available in the field of distributed monitoring systems of relevant parameters for landslide and man-made structures monitoring (such as large dams and bridges), and among them the distributed monitoring of temperature, strain and acoustic signals by FO cables. Fiber Optic measurements are becoming more and more popular. Fiber optic cables have been developed in the telecommunication business to send large amounts of information over large distances with the speed of light. Because of the commercial application, production costs are relatively low. Using fiber optics for measurements has several advantages. This novel technology is, for instance, immune to electromagnetic interference, appears stable, very accurate, and has the potential to measure several independent physical properties in a distributed manner. The high resolution spatial and temporal distributed information on e.g. temperature or strain (or both) make fiber optics an interesting measurement technique. Several applications have been developed in both engineering as science and the possibilities seem numerous. We will present a thorough literature review that was done to assess the applicability and limitations of FO cable technology. This review was focused but not limited to application in landslide research. Several examples of current practices will be shown, also from outside the natural hazard practice and possible application will be discussed.

  6. Fourth DOE Natural Phenomena Hazards Mitigation Conference: Proceedings

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)


    Volume II of the proceedings covers sessions IX - XIV. The general topics of the presented papers are: volcanoes, piping and components, waste tanks, probabilistic seismic hazards, geological and geotechnical aspects, equipment, codes and standards, analysis, and upgrades. Individual papers are indexed separately. (GH)

  7. A Critical Examination of the Climate Engineering Moral Hazard and Risk Compensation Concern

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Reynolds, J.L.(Jesse)

    The widespread concern that research into and potential implementation of climate engineering would reduce mitigation and adaptation is critically examined. First, empirical evidence of such moral hazard or risk compensation in general is inconclusive, and the empirical evidence to date in the case

  8. French people addressing environmental hazards (Eser 2013)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pautard, Eric; Moreau, Sylvain; Bottin, Anne; Kraszewski, Marlene; Fretin, David; Carriere, Celine; Bird, Geoffrey


    This publication presents the results of a survey, conducted towards the end of 2013, of 4,700 people resident in metropolitan France and its 'departements d'outre-mer' (DOM - overseas departments). The aim of the survey was to ascertain how French people perceive natural hazards (flooding, earthquakes, climate events, cyclones, etc.) and technological hazards (industrial and nuclear) to which they may be exposed. Questioned as to whether or not they felt exposed to one or several environmental hazards in their place of residence, French people's answers varied somewhat depending on the hazard invoked and place of residence. A strong feeling of exposure was expressed most frequently in the DOM. Respondents in both metropolitan France and DOM think that atmospheric pollution is a significant hazard (56%) but their opinions diverge partially where other hazards are concerned. Natural hazards (earthquakes and flooding) are cited most frequently overseas, whereas technological hazards (industrial and nuclear) are primarily metropolitan concerns. Climate change related hazards are seen as a threat by 56% of overseas respondents and by 42% in the mother country. In general, one-third of French people think that they are exposed to more than two environmental hazards. Unlike the younger members of the population, only one-quarter of respondents of 65 years of age or over felt exposed to three or more hazards. From municipal level databases providing information on exposure to flooding and technological and climate-related hazards, the survey indicates that a large majority of respondents living in these municipalities either do not feel at risk from existing hazards or feel that the risk is low (see figure below). It is in the area of climate-related hazards that awareness of threat seems to be highest in France, and more particularly in the DOM. In the face of the flooding that could affect them, overseas populations are more aware of this natural

  9. CubeSat for Natural-Hazard Estimation With Ionospheric Sciences (CNEWS): A Concept Development to Aid Tsunami Early Warning Systems (United States)

    Komjathy, A.; Romero-Wolf, A.; Yang, Y. M.; Langley, R. B.; Foster, J. H.


    The Jet Propulsion Laboratory, the University New Brunswick (Canada) and the University of Hawaii have developed a concept to provide open ocean tsunami wave height estimates using very accurate measurements of absolute total electron content (TEC) perturbations. Ionosphere-derived tsunami wave height estimates from our CubeSat for Natural-Hazard Estimation With Ionospheric Sciences (CNEWS) mission will refine the tsunami source energy calculation and improve the tsunami scale calculation for a localized region. As a secondary science objective, transmitting impulsive HF/VHF (10-40 MHz) transmissions through the ionosphere will provide in-situ geomagnetic disturbance measurements, which allow for discrimination between tsunami-induced signatures and space-weather-related fluctuations. NASA has invested several millions of dollars in the development of a tsunami warning system based on geodetic measurements from ground-based GPS stations. Leveraging this investment by simultaneously using ionospheric measurement from this GPS network for the detection of tsunamis represents a significant step forward. GPS ionospheric imaging is limited, however, by the slowly changing satellite geometry and its weak absolute TEC resolution (about 3 TECU). It has also been shown that GPS ionospheric imaging alone cannot distinguish between space weather fluctuations and those due to natural hazards. The very precise ionospheric measurements generated by CNEWS are expected to provide a quasi-static image of tsunami ionospheric signatures that we will use in an advanced model inversion technique to estimate tsunami wave heights at 10 cm (one sigma) uncertainty. The geomagnetic field strength resolution is also a key constraint for discriminating between natural hazards and space weather effects. HF/VHF impulses can resolve absolute TEC measurements at the 0.02 TECU level and geomagnetic field strength may be measured at 50 nT resolution.

  10. Harmonizing seismic hazard assessments for nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mallard, D.J.


    Even a cursory comparison between maps of global seismicity and NPP earthquake design levels reveals many inconsistencies. While, in part, this situation reflects the evolution in understanding of seismic hazards, mismatches can also be due to ongoing differences in the way the hazards are assessed and in local regulatory requirements. So far, formal international consensus has only been able to encompass broad principles, such as those recently recommended by the International Atomic Energy Agency, and even these can raise many technical issues, particularly relating to zones of diffuse seismicity. In the future, greater harmonisation in hazard assessments and, to some extent, in earthquake design levels could emerge through the more widespread use of probabilistic methods. International collaborative ventures and joint projects will be important for resolving anomalies in the existing databases and their interpretations, and for acquiring new data, but to achieve their ideal objectives, they will need to proceed in clearly defined stages. (author)

  11. Site characterization criteria (DOE-STD-1022-94) for natural phenomena hazards at DOE sites. Revision 1

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chen, J.C.; Ueng, Tzou-Shin; Boissonnade, A.C.


    This paper briefly summarizes requirements of site characterization for Natural Phenomena Hazards (NPH) at DOE sites. In order to comply with DOE Order 5480.28, site characterization criteria has been developed to provide site-specific information needed for development of NPH assessment criteria. Appropriate approaches are outlined to ensure that the current state-of-the-art methodologies and procedures are used in the site characterization. General and detailed site characterization requirements are provided in the areas of meteorology, hydrology, geology, seismology and geotechnical studies

  12. Differentiate responses of soil structure to natural vegetation and artificial plantation in landslide hazard region of the West Qinling Mountains, China (United States)

    Wang, X.; Huang, Z.; Zhao, Y.; Hong, M.


    Natural vegetation and artificial plantation are the most important measures for ecological restoration in soil erosion and landslide hazard-prone regions of China. Previous studies have demonstrated that both measures can significantly change the soil structure and decrease soil and water erosion. Few reports have compared the effects of the two contrasting measures on mechanical and hydrological properties and further tested the differentiate responses of soil structure. In the study areas, two vegetation restoration measures-natural vegetation restoration (NVR) and artificial plantation restoration (APR) compared with control site, with similar topographical and geological backgrounds were selected to investigate the different effects on soil structure based on eight-year ecological restoration projects. The results showed that the surface vegetation played an important role in releasing soil erosion and enhance soil structure stability through change the soil aggregates (SA) and total soil porosity (TSP). The SArestoration and conservation in geological hazard-prone regions.

  13. Study and mapping of natural hazards in the coastal zone of Murcia; Estudio y cartografia de los peligros naturales costeros de la region de Murcia

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Seisdedos, J.; Mulas, J.; Gonzalez de Vallejo, L. I.; Rodriguez Franco, J. A.; Garcia, F. J.; Rio, L. del; Garrote, J.


    Despite the importance and implications of coastal hazards, very few studies have been focused on their analysis and mapping on a regional scale in a systematic and integrated way. This article presents a methodology based on the detailed analysis of natural hazards affecting coastal zones: floods, erosion, sea level rise, tsunamis, landslides, etc., and the study and mapping of the factors involved (coastal geomorphology, coastal processes, historical events, human activities). These factors and hazards are evaluated and integrated to prepare maps which include the assessments of each individual hazard and the overall ones. A mapping system in strips parallel to the coast is used, allowing the recognition and interpretation of the characteristics of the coast and the associated hazards. This methodology is applied to the coastal zone of Murcia, showing its usefulness for studying and mapping coastal hazards and its applicability to other regions. (Author)

  14. Predicting Consequences of Technological Disasters from Natural Hazard Events: Challenges and Opportunities Associated with Industrial Accident Data Sources (United States)

    Wood, M.


    The increased focus on the possibility of technological accidents caused by natural events (Natech) is foreseen to continue for years to come. In this case, experts in prevention, mitigation and preparation activities associated with natural events will increasingly need to borrow data and expertise traditionally associated with the technological fields to carry out the work. An important question is how useful is the data for understanding consequences from such natech events. Data and case studies provided on major industrial accidents tend to focus on lessons learned for re-engineering the process. While consequence data are reported at least nominally in most reports, their precision, quality and completeness is often lacking. Consequences that are often or sometimes available but not provided can include severity and type of injuries, distance of victims from the source, exposure measurements, volume of the release, population in potentially affected zones, and weather conditions. Yet these are precisely the type of data that will aid natural hazard experts in land-use planning and emergency response activities when a Natech event may be foreseen. This work discusses the results of a study of consequence data from accidents involving toxic releases reported in the EU's MARS accident database. The study analysed the precision, quality and completeness of three categories of consequence data reported: the description of health effects, consequence assessment and chemical risk assessment factors, and emergency response information. This work reports on the findings from this study and discusses how natural hazards experts might interact with industrial accident experts to promote more consistent and accurate reporting of the data that will be useful in consequence-based activities.

  15. Wireless sensor network: an aimless gadget or a necessary tool for natural hazards warning systems (United States)

    Hloupis, George; Stavrakas, Ilias; Triantis, Dimos


    The purpose of the current study is to review the current technical and scientific state of wireless sensor networks (WSNs) with application on natural hazards. WSN have received great attention from the research community in the last few years, mainly due to the theoretical and practical efforts from challenges that led to mature solutions and adoption of standards, such as Bluetooth [2] and ZigBee [3]. Wireless technology solutions allows Micro-ElectroMechanical Systems sensors (MEMS) to be integrated (with all the necessary circuitry) to small wireless capable devices, the nodes. Available MEMS today include pressure, temperature, humidity, inertial and strain-gauge sensors as well as transducers for velocity, acceleration, vibration, flow position and inclination [4]. A WSN is composed by a large number of nodes which are deployed densely adjacent to the area under monitoring. Each node collects data which transmitted to a gateway. The main requirements that WSNs must fulfilled are quite different than those of ad-hoc networks. WSNs have to be self-organized (since the positions of individual nodes are not known in advance), they must present cooperative processing of tasks (where groups of nodes cooperate in order to provide the gathered data to the user), they require security mechanisms that are adaptive to monitoring conditions and all algorithms must be energy optimized. In this paper, the state of the art in hardware, software, algorithms and protocols for WSNs, focused on natural hazards, is surveyed. Architectures for WSNs are investigated along with their advantages and drawbacks. Available research prototypes as well as commercially proposed solutions that can be used for natural hazards monitoring and early warning systems are listed and classified. [1] I.F. Akyildiz, W. Su, Y. Sankarasubramaniam, E. Cayirci, Wireless sensor networks: a survey, Comput. Networks (Elsevier) 38 (4) (2002) 393-422. [2] Dursch, A.; Yen, D.C.; Shih, D.H. Bluetooth

  16. A modeling framework for investment planning in interdependent infrastructures in multi-hazard environments.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brown, Nathanael J. K.; Gearhart, Jared Lee; Jones, Dean A.; Nozick, Linda Karen; Prince, Michael


    Currently, much of protection planning is conducted separately for each infrastructure and hazard. Limited funding requires a balance of expenditures between terrorism and natural hazards based on potential impacts. This report documents the results of a Laboratory Directed Research & Development (LDRD) project that created a modeling framework for investment planning in interdependent infrastructures focused on multiple hazards, including terrorism. To develop this framework, three modeling elements were integrated: natural hazards, terrorism, and interdependent infrastructures. For natural hazards, a methodology was created for specifying events consistent with regional hazards. For terrorism, we modeled the terrorists actions based on assumptions regarding their knowledge, goals, and target identification strategy. For infrastructures, we focused on predicting post-event performance due to specific terrorist attacks and natural hazard events, tempered by appropriate infrastructure investments. We demonstrate the utility of this framework with various examples, including protection of electric power, roadway, and hospital networks.

  17. The Prodigies of The Albano Lake During Roman Age and Natural Hazard Assessment At Roma, Italy. (United States)

    Funiciello, R.; Giordano, G.; de Rita, D.

    Roma is built just 20 km to the northwest of the Pleistocene Colli Albani volcano, but is believed not exposed to relevant natural hazards, except for the Tiber river flood- ings, and local amplification of seismic waves from distal earthquakes. This belief has generally induced modern historians and geologists to discard as SmythologicalT the & cedil;many references to natural prodigies that are reported by many Roman-age historians. Recent studies have demonstrated that the Albano maar, the youngest volcanic cen- tre of the Colli Albani volcano and presently filled by a 175 m deep lake, protracted its activity to the Holocene triggering several catastrophic lahar events, likely related to lake withdrawal, the deposits of which are exposed to the southwest of Roma and reach its periphery. This finding youngs the history of the volcano and makes it rele- vant to pre-historic settlements, which ScarefullyT avoided the Albano maar slopes up & cedil;to the Bronze age. What is still unknown, though, is whether the lake experienced such fluctuations and overspills during historic times. Several Roman authors such as Ti- tus Livius, Dionigi d'Alicarnasso, Plutarco, Germanico, and many others wrote about the then well known 398 BC prodigious event, when, during the war between Roma and the Etruscan city of Veio, the gods anger caused the sudden rise and overspill of the Albano lake, reported as unrelated to climatic events, and the destructive flooding of the countryside. After that event Romans actually built a tunnel-drain which still operates regulating the lake level at 293 m a.s.l., 70 m below the maar rim elevation. Should those chronicles be truthful, we can join the geologic observation of Holocene lahar deposits from lake withdrawal with historical lake withdrawals, reassessing the natural hazard for the city of Roma under a point of view never explored before. This paper carefully explores the historical credibility of the 398 BC lake overspill event and its

  18. Observed changes and future trends in vulnerability to natural hazards for mountain communities (United States)

    Puissant, A.; Gazo, A.; Débonnaire, N.; Moravek, A.; Aguejdad, R.; -P., Malet J.; B., Martin


    Since 50 years, mountain areas are affected by important landcover and landuse changes characterized by the decrease of pastoral activities, reforestation or urbanization with the development of tourism activities and infrastructures. These natural and anthropogenic transformations have an impact on the socio-economic activities but also on the exposure of the communities to natural hazards. In the context of the ANR Project SAMCO which aims at enhancing the overall resilience of societies on the impacts of mountain risks, the objective of this research was to analyse landcover/use changes and to model future changes to assess the impacts of such change and to analyse trajectory of the vulnerability of mountain communities. For this research, an experiment is performed for two mountain areas of the French Alps (Barcelonnette Basin, Vars Basin). Changes in landcover and landuse are characterized over the period 1956-2010 for the two communities at two spatial scales (catchment, municipality). Four scenarios of landcover and landuse development (based on the Prelude European Project) are proposed for the period 2050 and 2100. Based on these scenarios, the evolution of vulnerability is estimated by using the Potential Damage Index method proposed by Puissant et al. (2013).

  19. Agent-based simulation for human-induced hazard analysis. (United States)

    Bulleit, William M; Drewek, Matthew W


    Terrorism could be treated as a hazard for design purposes. For instance, the terrorist hazard could be analyzed in a manner similar to the way that seismic hazard is handled. No matter how terrorism is dealt with in the design of systems, the need for predictions of the frequency and magnitude of the hazard will be required. And, if the human-induced hazard is to be designed for in a manner analogous to natural hazards, then the predictions should be probabilistic in nature. The model described in this article is a prototype model that used agent-based modeling (ABM) to analyze terrorist attacks. The basic approach in this article of using ABM to model human-induced hazards has been preliminarily validated in the sense that the attack magnitudes seem to be power-law distributed and attacks occur mostly in regions where high levels of wealth pass through, such as transit routes and markets. The model developed in this study indicates that ABM is a viable approach to modeling socioeconomic-based infrastructure systems for engineering design to deal with human-induced hazards. © 2010 Society for Risk Analysis.

  20. Knowledge to Action - Understanding Natural Hazards-Induced Power Outage Scenarios for Actionable Disaster Responses (United States)

    Kar, B.; Robinson, C.; Koch, D. B.; Omitaomu, O.


    The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 identified the following four priorities to prevent and reduce disaster risks: i) understanding disaster risk; ii) strengthening governance to manage disaster risk; iii) investing in disaster risk reduction for resilience and; iv) enhancing disaster preparedness for effective response, and to "Build Back Better" in recovery, rehabilitation and reconstruction. While forecasting and decision making tools are in place to predict and understand future impacts of natural hazards, the knowledge to action approach that currently exists fails to provide updated information needed by decision makers to undertake response and recovery efforts following a hazard event. For instance, during a tropical storm event advisories are released every two to three hours, but manual analysis of geospatial data to determine potential impacts of the event tends to be time-consuming and a post-event process. Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory have developed a Spatial Decision Support System that enables real-time analysis of storm impact based on updated advisory. A prototype of the tool that focuses on determining projected power outage areas and projected duration of outages demonstrates the feasibility of integrating science with decision making for emergency management personnel to act in real time to protect communities and reduce risk.

  1. Community Resilience: Increasing Public Understanding of Risk and Vulnerability to Natural Hazards through Informal Education (United States)

    Salna, E.


    The Extreme Events Institute's (EEI) International Hurricane Research Center (IHRC) at Florida International University (FIU) in Miami, Florida, as a NOAA Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador, is dedicated to make South Florida, Ready, Responsive and Resilient. IHRC with funding from the Florida Division of Emergency Management (FDEM) has developed several museum exhibits and events. This includes the hands-on FIU Wall of Wind exhibit for the National Building Museum in Washington, DC, the Frost Science Museum in Miami, Florida, and the Museum of Discovery and Science (MODS) in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The exhibit teaches the public about hurricane wind engineering research, enhanced building codes, and the importance of protecting your home's windows and doors with code-approved shutters. In addition, IHRC and MODS facilitate Eye of the Storm, a free-of-charge, community event with interactive hurricane science, and preparedness activities, including the entertaining Owlie Skywarn live theater show and live air cannon missile impact demonstrations. This annual event includes many local, state and federal partners, including NOAA and NWS. The IHRC also developed the FIU Wall of Wind Mitigation Challenge. As the next generation of engineers to address natural hazards and extreme weather, this STEM education event features a competition between high school teams to develop innovative wind mitigation concepts and real-life human safety and property protection solutions. IHRC and MODS are also developing a new exhibit of a Hazard/Risk Equation that will "come to life," through virtual reality (VR) technology in a state-of-the art 7D theater. The exhibit will provide a better public understanding of how changes in exposures and vulnerabilities will determine whether a community experiences an emergency, disaster or catastrophe. It will raise public consciousness and drive home the point that communities need not passively accept natural hazard risks. Ultimately, if we raise

  2. Tourism facing the challenge of recurring natural hazards: a view from Cancún

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frank Babinger


    Full Text Available This article discusses the duality between economic development based on tourism and the impact of land occupation at the expense of an environment that includes specific natural hazards. The transformation of coastal areas to be occupied by tourism is one of the serious problems which are not taken into account when planning the activity. Cancún is a paradigmatic model in which an explosive growth in tourists, residents and tourist buildings has led to the massive occupation of a coastal area historically and currently affected by tropical storms and hurricanes. The result is a clear increase in risk exposure and vulnerability. This space colonization by tourism and the impacts of hurricanes have a direct impact on the hotels and housing developments, which call into question the maintenance of tourism in the future.

  3. Radiation Hazard Detector (United States)


    NASA technology has made commercially available a new, inexpensive, conveniently-carried device for protection, of people exposed to potentially dangerous levels of microwave radiation. Microwaves are radio emissions of extremely high frequency. They can be hazardous but the degree of hazard is not yet well understood. Generally, it is believed that low intensity radiation of short duration is not harmful but that exposure to high levels can induce deep internal burns, affecting the circulatory and nervous systems, and particularly the eyes. The Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has established an allowable safe threshold of exposure. However, people working near high intensity sources of microwave energy-for example, radar antennas and television transmitters-may be unknowingly exposed to radiation levels beyond the safe limit. This poses not only a personal safety problem but also a problem for employers in terms of productivity loss, workman's compensation claims and possible liability litigation. Earlier-developed monitoring devices which warn personnel of dangerous radiation levels have their shortcomings. They can be cumbersome and awkward to use while working. They also require continual visual monitoring to determine if a person is in a dangerous area of radiation, and they are relatively expensive, another deterrent to their widespread adoption. In response to the need for a cheaper and more effective warning system, Jet Propulsion Laboratory developed, under NASA auspices, a new, battery-powered Microwave Radiation Hazard Detector. To bring the product to the commercial market, California Institute Research Foundation, the patent holder, granted an exclusive license to Cicoil Corporation, Chatsworth, California, an electronic components manufacturer.

  4. Three consecutive years of road closures due to natural hazards in the Weisstannen valley, Canton of St-Gallen, Switzerland (United States)

    Voumard, Jérémie; Derron, Marc-Henri; Jaboyedoff, Michel


    The Weisstannen small alpine valley located in the Canton of St-Gallen, Switzerland, has been affected by four different natural hazards these three last years. Its unique access road has been cut off height times during this period: by an earth slide in January 2014, by three debris flows in August 2015, by one debris flow in September 2016, by two floods in June and July 2016 and by a rockfall in May 2016. Although the valley is sparsely populated, 240 people have been affected by the height road closures due to these events. In addition to road damages, several buildings, of which a restaurant (with EUR 190'000 damages) and an animal shelter, have been damaged. In Switzerland, some roads of 15 communes have been affected by natural hazards at least three times in five years (2012-2016). Then the Weisstannen valley is not an exception at the communal level. However, it is the only valley whose unique access was cut off three consecutive years. With these repeated events, the population of the valley does not understand how possible it is to end up in such a situation in a country accustomed to natural hazards. In the media and social media, people do not hide their irritation regarding to this situation: "Have the authorities failed to take into account natural dangers despite of the 4.7 million Euro allocated for a flood protection project? Who is responsible of those repeated damages? Why the situation did not improve after the events of the first year and then the second year? ". In the present work, we try to shed the light on this peculiar case analysing the causes of road closures, studying meteorological, topographical, hydrological and geological data for each events. The effectiveness of the new protective measures built between the events are assessed, as the future planned protectives measures. Road closures consequences on the population and the economy are also estimated. Finally, we estimate the probability of having new road closures in the

  5. More About Hazard-Response Robot For Combustible Atmospheres (United States)

    Stone, Henry W.; Ohm, Timothy R.


    Report presents additional information about design and capabilities of mobile hazard-response robot called "Hazbot III." Designed to operate safely in combustible and/or toxic atmosphere. Includes cameras and chemical sensors helping human technicians determine location and nature of hazard so human emergency team can decide how to eliminate hazard without approaching themselves.

  6. Fractal simulation of urbanization for the analysis of vulnerability to natural hazards (United States)

    Puissant, Anne; Sensier, Antoine; Tannier, Cécile; Malet, Jean-Philippe


    Since 50 years, mountain areas are affected by important land cover/use changes characterized by the decrease of pastoral activities, reforestation and urbanization with the development of tourism activities and infrastructures. These natural and anthropogenic transformations have an impact on the socio-economic activities but also on the exposure of the communities to natural hazards. In the context of the ANR Project SAMCO which aims at enhancing the overall resilience of societies on the impacts of mountain risks, the objective of this research was to help to determine where to locate new residential developments for different scenarios of land cover/use (based on the Prelude European Project) for the years 2030 and 2050. The Planning Support System (PSS), called MUP-City, based on a fractal multi-scale modeling approach is used because it allows taking into account local accessibility to some urban and rural amenities (Tannier et al., 2012). For this research, an experiment is performed on a mountain area in the French Alps (Barcelonnette Basin) to generate three scenarios of urban development with MUP-City at the scale of 1:10:000. The results are assessed by comparing the localization of residential developments with urban areas predicted by land cover and land use scenarios generated by cellular automata modelling (LCM and Dyna-clue) (Puissant et al., 2015). Based on these scenarios, the evolution of vulnerability is estimated.

  7. Automated economic analysis model for hazardous waste minimization

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dharmavaram, S.; Mount, J.B.; Donahue, B.A.


    The US Army has established a policy of achieving a 50 percent reduction in hazardous waste generation by the end of 1992. To assist the Army in reaching this goal, the Environmental Division of the US Army Construction Engineering Research Laboratory (USACERL) designed the Economic Analysis Model for Hazardous Waste Minimization (EAHWM). The EAHWM was designed to allow the user to evaluate the life cycle costs for various techniques used in hazardous waste minimization and to compare them to the life cycle costs of current operating practices. The program was developed in C language on an IBM compatible PC and is consistent with other pertinent models for performing economic analyses. The potential hierarchical minimization categories used in EAHWM include source reduction, recovery and/or reuse, and treatment. Although treatment is no longer an acceptable minimization option, its use is widespread and has therefore been addressed in the model. The model allows for economic analysis for minimization of the Army's six most important hazardous waste streams. These include, solvents, paint stripping wastes, metal plating wastes, industrial waste-sludges, used oils, and batteries and battery electrolytes. The EAHWM also includes a general application which can be used to calculate and compare the life cycle costs for minimization alternatives of any waste stream, hazardous or non-hazardous. The EAHWM has been fully tested and implemented in more than 60 Army installations in the United States

  8. Cascading hazards: Understanding triggering relations between wet tropical cyclones, landslides, and earthquakes (United States)

    Wdowinski, S.; Peng, Z.; Ferrier, K.; Lin, C. H.; Hsu, Y. J.; Shyu, J. B. H.


    Earthquakes, landslides, and tropical cyclones are extreme hazards that pose significant threats to human life and property. Some of the couplings between these hazards are well known. For example, sudden, widespread landsliding can be triggered by large earthquakes and by extreme rainfall events like tropical cyclones. Recent studies have also shown that earthquakes can be triggered by erosional unloading over 100-year timescales. In a NASA supported project, titled "Cascading hazards: Understanding triggering relations between wet tropical cyclones, landslides, and earthquake", we study triggering relations between these hazard types. The project focuses on such triggering relations in Taiwan, which is subjected to very wet tropical storms, landslides, and earthquakes. One example for such triggering relations is the 2009 Morakot typhoon, which was the wettest recorded typhoon in Taiwan (2850 mm of rain in 100 hours). The typhoon caused widespread flooding and triggered more than 20,000 landslides, including the devastating Hsiaolin landslide. Six months later, the same area was hit by the 2010 M=6.4 Jiashian earthquake near Kaohsiung city, which added to the infrastructure damage induced by the typhoon and the landslides. Preliminary analysis of temporal relations between main-shock earthquakes and the six wettest typhoons in Taiwan's past 50 years reveals similar temporal relations between M≥5 events and wet typhoons. Future work in the project will include remote sensing analysis of landsliding, seismic and geodetic monitoring of landslides, detection of microseismicity and tremor activities, and mechanical modeling of crustal stress changes due to surface unloading.

  9. Causal Mediation Analysis for the Cox Proportional Hazards Model with a Smooth Baseline Hazard Estimator. (United States)

    Wang, Wei; Albert, Jeffrey M


    An important problem within the social, behavioral, and health sciences is how to partition an exposure effect (e.g. treatment or risk factor) among specific pathway effects and to quantify the importance of each pathway. Mediation analysis based on the potential outcomes framework is an important tool to address this problem and we consider the estimation of mediation effects for the proportional hazards model in this paper. We give precise definitions of the total effect, natural indirect effect, and natural direct effect in terms of the survival probability, hazard function, and restricted mean survival time within the standard two-stage mediation framework. To estimate the mediation effects on different scales, we propose a mediation formula approach in which simple parametric models (fractional polynomials or restricted cubic splines) are utilized to approximate the baseline log cumulative hazard function. Simulation study results demonstrate low bias of the mediation effect estimators and close-to-nominal coverage probability of the confidence intervals for a wide range of complex hazard shapes. We apply this method to the Jackson Heart Study data and conduct sensitivity analysis to assess the impact on the mediation effects inference when the no unmeasured mediator-outcome confounding assumption is violated.


    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    R.J. Garrett


    The purpose of this internal hazards analysis is to identify and document the internal hazards and potential initiating events associated with preclosure operations of the repository at Yucca Mountain. Internal hazards are those hazards presented by the operation of the facility and by its associated processes that can potentially lead to a radioactive release or cause a radiological hazard. In contrast to external hazards, internal hazards do not involve natural phenomena and external man-made hazards. This internal hazards analysis was performed in support of the preclosure safety analysis and the License Application for the Yucca Mountain Project. The methodology for this analysis provides a systematic means to identify internal hazards and potential initiating events that may result in a radiological hazard or radiological release during the repository preclosure period. These hazards are documented in tables of potential internal hazards and potential initiating events (Section 6.6) for input to the repository event sequence categorization process. The results of this analysis will undergo further screening and analysis based on the criteria that apply to the performance of event sequence analyses for the repository preclosure period. The evolving design of the repository will be re-evaluated periodically to ensure that internal hazards that have not been previously evaluated are identified.


    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Garrett, R.J.


    The purpose of this internal hazards analysis is to identify and document the internal hazards and potential initiating events associated with preclosure operations of the repository at Yucca Mountain. Internal hazards are those hazards presented by the operation of the facility and by its associated processes that can potentially lead to a radioactive release or cause a radiological hazard. In contrast to external hazards, internal hazards do not involve natural phenomena and external man-made hazards. This internal hazards analysis was performed in support of the preclosure safety analysis and the License Application for the Yucca Mountain Project. The methodology for this analysis provides a systematic means to identify internal hazards and potential initiating events that may result in a radiological hazard or radiological release during the repository preclosure period. These hazards are documented in tables of potential internal hazards and potential initiating events (Section 6.6) for input to the repository event sequence categorization process. The results of this analysis will undergo further screening and analysis based on the criteria that apply to the performance of event sequence analyses for the repository preclosure period. The evolving design of the repository will be re-evaluated periodically to ensure that internal hazards that have not been previously evaluated are identified

  12. Venezuelan policies and responses on climate change and natural hazards (United States)

    Caponi, Claudio; Rosales, Anibal


    Venezuela is an intertropical country which has the fortune not to suffer the severities of natural hazards which are usual in other countries of this region. It is a developing country, whose economy is heavily dependent on oil production and exports. Its greenhouse gas emissions are relatively low, but it is expected that the planned industrialization development will bring an associated increase in emissions. As a nation, Venezuela has a highly developed environmental consciousness. The Ministry of environment, the first in Latin America, was created in 1977, and has been the main contributor to the national policy of Disaster Prevention and Reduction. As in many developing countries actions and responses in this regard have been rather limited in scope, and even though legislation has been developed, many problems arise for its enforcement. Several local warning systems, civil defense procedures, and infrastructural protection measures are operational, however they have not been designed, revised, or planned taking into consideration the potential impacts of climate change. Presently Venezuela is an active participant state in the negotiation for a framework convention on climate change. That is a very difficult negotiation for our country. Here we have to conciliate enviromental principles with national economic interests. The elements of our position in this contex are presented in this statement.

  13. Selected papers on natural and man-made hazards and related questions from the 6th international CODATA conference. [Santa Flavia, Palermo, Italy, May 22-25, 1978

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dreyfus, B. (ed.)

    Eighty-seven papers were presented at this conference, which had the four themes of quality of life and environment, preservation of natural ecosystems, prediction of natural disasters, and prevention of manmade hazards. The present bulletin contains ten papers felt to be representative; these deal with earthquake prediction, pattern recognition as a method of data analysis, long-term environmental hazards, analysis of numerical biological data, operation of a data bank in biomedical science, data importance in relation to Chesapeake Bay pollution, data banks in food and agriculture, the Seveso accident, and industry needs concerning information on materials. Separate abstracts were prepared for three of the papers. (RWR)

  14. Natural Hazard Problem and Solution Definition in the News Media: the Case of Tropical Storm Allison (United States)

    Lindquist, Eric; Mosher-Howe, Katrina


    Focusing events such as natural or technological disasters can have significant impacts on public policy and planning in both the near and long term. These impacts can manifest at different temporal scales ranging from the period of immediate attention and disaster relief through the period of recovery and reconstruction and beyond. These impacts and associated decisions can be studied in retrospect and understood as not only short-term reactions, but as long-term components of subsequent natural hazard planning and public policy. By studying in detail how an event was defined, and the policy and planning alternatives that were raised or recommended in response to a disaster event, we can better understand the role that disaster-related focusing events play in the long-term evolution of a community's public policy, infrastructural planning efforts, and responses to natural disasters. This paper will use a focusing event framework to explore the local and regional policy impacts over time of a major urban flood in Houston, Texas, Tropical Storm Allison. Tropical Storm Allison (TSA), dropped 36 inches of rain on Houston over a period of four days in early June 2001, and was responsible for 22 deaths, 70,000 flood damaged homes, and 5 billion in damage to the region. The primary data source for this effort is a database of 500 articles from the major regional newspaper, the Houston Chronicle, over the period of 2001 through 2008. These articles were coded for multiple variables, including, cause, effect and impact (financial and social), blame, problem and solution definition and solution acceptance). This paper focuses primarily on the measures of problem definition (how was TSA, as an event, defined in the media, for example, as an act of God, or as a result of poor planning or decision making, etc), and on solution definition (what solutions were proposed to mitigate or adapt to future storms of this magnitude, how were they linked to the definition of the problem

  15. The potential use of natural resources in urban informal settlements as substitutes for financial capital during flooding emergencies (United States)

    Dalu, Mwazvita T. B.; Shackleton, Charlie M.


    Rapid and widespread land cover change and the subsequent loss of the buffering capacity provided by healthy ecosystems against natural hazards has resulted in increased vulnerability to natural hazards. There is an insufficient understanding of the natural resources contribution to the resilience of poor urban communities living in informal settlements and the financial implications thereof. Thus, household strategies used to recover from the October 2012 flood shock were investigated within the informal settlements of three small South African towns using questionnaires. Within the vulnerability paradigm and the sustainable livelihood framework, the study also quantified and evaluated the relative contribution of natural resources to recovery strategies and the impacts on household financial capital. We found that natural resources contributed up to 70% to recovery of households from the flood shock, most of this being to reconstruct housing structures after the flood. Factors such as household head education level, household income, kinship level, the extent of property damage and the cost associated with property rehabilitation significantly influenced the uptake of natural resources in recovery from floods, and this was variable among settlements and towns. The main findings showed that natural resources reduced household vulnerability of urban informal settlements by providing an emergency-net function that substitutes financial capital. Their inclusion in disaster management plans and responses has the potential to contribute to the sustainable livelihoods of the urban poor in the Eastern Cape, South Africa.

  16. The use of animals as a surveillance tool for monitoring environmental health hazards, human health hazards and bioterrorism. (United States)

    Neo, Jacqueline Pei Shan; Tan, Boon Huan


    This review discusses the utilization of wild or domestic animals as surveillance tools for monitoring naturally occurring environmental and human health hazards. Besides providing early warning to natural hazards, animals can also provide early warning to societal hazards like bioterrorism. Animals are ideal surveillance tools to humans because they share the same environment as humans and spend more time outdoors than humans, increasing their exposure risk. Furthermore, the biologically compressed lifespans of some animals may allow them to develop clinical signs more rapidly after exposure to specific pathogens. Animals are an excellent channel for monitoring novel and known pathogens with outbreak potential given that more than 60 % of emerging infectious diseases in humans originate as zoonoses. This review attempts to highlight animal illnesses, deaths, biomarkers or sentinel events, to remind human and veterinary public health programs that animal health can be used to discover, monitor or predict environmental health hazards, human health hazards, or bioterrorism. Lastly, we hope that this review will encourage the implementation of animals as a surveillance tool by clinicians, veterinarians, ecosystem health professionals, researchers and governments. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. High-school software development project helps increasing students' awareness of geo-hydrological hazards and their risks (United States)

    Marchesini, Ivan; Rossi, Mauro; Balducci, Vinicio; Salvati, Paola; Guzzetti, Fausto; Bianchini, Andrea; Grzeleswki, Emanuell; Canonico, Andrea; Coccia, Rita; Fiorucci, Gianni Mario; Gobbi, Francesca; Ciuchetti, Monica


    In Italy, inundation and landslides are widespread phenomena that impact the population and cause significant economic damage to private and public properties. The perception of the risk posed by these natural geo-hydrological hazards varies geographically and in time. The variation in the perception of the risks has negative consequences on risk management, and limits the adoption of effective risk reduction strategies. We maintain that targeted education can foster the understanding of geo-hydrological hazards, improving their perception and the awareness of the associated risk. Collaboration of a research center experienced in geo-hydrological hazards and risks (CNR IRPI, Perugia) and a high school (ITIS Alessandro Volta, Perugia) has resulted in the design and execution of a project aimed at improving the perception of geo-hydrological risks in high school students and teachers through software development. In the two-year project, students, high school teachers and research scientists have jointly developed software broadly related to landslide and flood hazards. User requirements and system specifications were decided to facilitate the distribution and use of the software among students and their peers. This allowed a wider distribution of the project results. We discuss two prototype software developed by the high school students, including an application of augmented reality for improved dissemination of information of landslides and floods with human consequences in Italy, and a crowd science application to allow students (and others, including their families and friends) to collect information on landslide and flood occurrence exploiting modern mobile devices. This information can prove important e.g., for the validation of landslide forecasting models.

  18. Geologic and Geophysicsal Studies of Natural Hazards and Risks in the Gulf of Peter the Great, Japan Sea (United States)

    Anokhin, Vladimir; Shcherbakov, Viktor; Motychko, Viktor; Slinchenkov, Vladimir; Sokolov, Georgy; Kotov, Sergey; Kartashov, Sergey


    The area of the Gulf of Peter the Great is socially, economically and culturally one of the most important regions for the Russian Far East. At the same time, there have been reported palpable natural hazards, which pose a real threat to local infrastructure. Complex field team of the Gramaberg VNIIOkeangeologia institute carried out geological and geophysical studies of natural hazards in the water area and coastal zone of the gulf in the summer and autumn of 2012. The research program included - geodetic deformation monitoring of the coastal zone by the HDS 3000 Leica tachometer; - echo sounding of the underwater part of the coastal slope by the LCX-37C depth sounder equipped with active external 12-channel GPS Lowrance antenna LGC-3000; - high-frequency acoustic profiling by GeoPulse Subbotom Profilier with oscillator frequency of 12.2 kHz for the study of bottom sediments to a depth of 40 m; - hydromagnetic measurements by SeaSPY Marine Magnetics magnetometer for investigation of deep geological structure; - sonar measurements by GEO SM C-MAX, 325 kHz frequency emitters for studying seafloor features; - studies of the water column (sensing and sampling); - bottom sediment sampling. Analytic work was performed by mass spectrometry, atomic absorption spectrophotometry, chromatography, gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, gamma spectrometry and included the following. For water - the content of Fe, Mn, Cd, As, Pb, Cu, Co, Ni, Cr, Zn, Hg in solution and in suspension, polycyclic aromatic compounds, organochlorine pesticides, oil, methane. For sediments - grade analysis, mineralogical analysis of sand, determination of Fe, Mn, Cd, As, Pb, Cu, Co, Ni, Cr, Zn, Hg content; identification of petroleum products, polychlorinated biphenyls, organochlorine pesticides, the specific activity of Cs-137. As a result, a set of geological maps was composed: maps of pre-Quaternary and Quaternary rocks and deposits, lithological map, geomorphological map, map of engineering

  19. Widespread Wolbachia infection in terrestrial isopods and other crustaceans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richard Cordaux


    Full Text Available Wolbachia bacteria are obligate intracellular alpha-Proteobacteria of arthropods and nematodes. Although widespread among isopod crustaceans, they have seldom been found in non-isopod crustacean species. Here, we report Wolbachia infection in fourteen new crustacean species. Our results extend the range of Wolbachia infections in terrestrial isopods and amphipods (class Malacostraca. We report the occurrence of two different Wolbachia strains in two host species (a terrestrial isopod and an amphipod. Moreover, the discovery of Wolbachia in the goose barnacle Lepas anatifera (subclass Thecostraca establishes Wolbachia infection in class Maxillopoda. The new bacterial strains are closely related to B-supergroup Wolbachia strains previously reported from crustacean hosts. Our results suggest that Wolbachia infection may be much more widespread in crustaceans than previously thought. The presence of related Wolbachia strains in highly divergent crustacean hosts suggests that Wolbachia endosymbionts can naturally adapt to a wide range of crustacean hosts. Given the ability of isopod Wolbachia strains to induce feminization of genetic males or cytoplasmic incompatibility, we speculate that manipulation of crustacean-borne Wolbachia bacteria might represent potential tools for controlling crustacean species of commercial interest and crustacean or insect disease vectors.

  20. Sustainable System for Residual Hazards Management

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kevin M. Kostelnik; James H. Clarke; Jerry L. Harbour


    Hazardous, radioactive and other toxic substances have routinely been generated and subsequently disposed of in the shallow subsurface throughout the world. Many of today's waste management techniques do not eliminate the problem, but rather only concentrate or contain the hazardous contaminants. Residual hazards result from the presence of hazardous and/or contaminated material that remains on-site following active operations or the completion of remedial actions. Residual hazards pose continued risk to humans and the environment and represent a significant and chronic problem that require continuous long-term management (i.e. >1000 years). To protect human health and safeguard the natural environment, a sustainable system is required for the proper management of residual hazards. A sustainable system for the management of residual hazards will require the integration of engineered, institutional and land-use controls to isolate residual contaminants and thus minimize the associated hazards. Engineered controls are physical modifications to the natural setting and ecosystem, including the site, facility, and/or the residual materials themselves, in order to reduce or eliminate the potential for exposure to contaminants of concern (COCs). Institutional controls are processes, instruments, and mechanisms designed to influence human behavior and activity. System failure can involve hazardous material escaping from the confinement because of system degradation (i.e., chronic or acute degradation) or by external intrusion of the biosphere into the contaminated material because of the loss of institutional control. An ongoing analysis of contemporary and historic sites suggests that the significance of the loss of institutional controls is a critical pathway because decisions made during the operations/remedial action phase, as well as decisions made throughout the residual hazards management period, are key to the long-term success of the prescribed system. In fact

  1. Landscape analysis for multi-hazard prevention in Orco and Soana valleys, Northwest Italy (United States)

    Turconi, L.; Tropeano, D.; Savio, G.; De, S. K.; Mason, P. J.


    The study area (600 km2), consisting of Orco and Soana valleys in the Western Italian Alps, experienced different types of natural hazards, typical of the whole Alpine environment. Some of the authors have been requested to draw a civil protection plan for such mountainous regions. This offered the special opportunity (1) to draw a lot of unpublished historical data, dating back several centuries mostly concerning natural hazard processes and related damages, (2) to develop original detailed geo-morphological studies in a region still poorly known, (3) to prepare detailed thematic maps illustrating landscape components related to natural conditions and hazards, (4) to thoroughly check present-day situations in the area compared to the effects of past events and (5) to find adequate natural hazard scenarios for all sites exposed to risk. The method of work has been essentially to compare archival findings with field evidence in order to assess natural hazard processes, their occurrence and magnitude, and to arrange all such elements in a database for GIS-supported thematic maps. Several types of natural hazards, such as landslides, rockfalls, debris flows, stream floods and snow avalanches cause huge damage to lives and properties (housings, roads, tourist sites). We aim to obtain newly acquired knowledge in this large, still poorly understood area as well as develop easy-to-interpret products such as natural risk maps.

  2. Evaluation of natural radioactivity and its associated health hazard indices of a South Indian river

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Krishnamoorthy, N.; Mullainathan, S.; Mehra, R.; Chaparro, Marcos A.E.; Chaparro, Mauro A.E.


    The activity concentration of the natural radionuclides 226 Ra, 232 Th and 40 K was measured for sediment samples collected from thirty-three different locations along the Bharathapuzha river basin by using high-resolution gamma-ray spectrometry. The concentrations of the natural radionuclides were found to vary from location to location, and their mean values are 19.6, 82.87 and 19.44 % higher than the worldwide mean values of 226 Ra, 232 Th and 40 K, respectively. The value of 232 Th was found to be higher than that of 226 Ra in 82 % of the samples collected for this study. The calculated values of indoor gamma dose rate (D IN ) ranged between 89.55 and 194.24 nGy h -1 , and the overall mean value is 63.2 % higher than the recommended safe and criterion limit by UNSCEAR. The internal and external hazard indices (H in and H ex ), the representative gamma index and alpha index (I gamma and I alpha ), the annual gonad dose equivalent (AGDE) and the excess lifetime cancer risk (ELCR) were also calculated and compared with the international recommended values. Multivariate statistical analyses were also carried out to determine the relation between the natural radionuclides and various radiological parameters. (authors)

  3. Assessment of natural radioactivity and associated radiation hazards in some Cameroonian building materials

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ngachin, M.; Garavaglia, M.; Giovani, C.; Kwato Njock, M.G.; Nourreddine, A.


    The concentration of 238 U, 232 Th and 40 K in 13 building materials obtained from factories and collected in field in Cameroon were investigated by γ-ray spectrometry. The activity ranged from 1.76 to 49.84Bqkg -1 , 0.32 to 147Bqkg -1 and 18 to 1226Bqkg -1 for 238 U, 232 Th and 40 K, respectively. The highest 238 U activity was found in compressed red soil brick type I (49.6+/-0.3Bqkg -1 ) produced by a local manufacturer while the highest 232 Th (139+/-13Bqkg -1 ) and 40 K (1162+/-108Bqkg -1 ) activities were found in gravel collected from an exploitation site in Logbadjeck. The activities are compared with available data from other investigations and with the world average value for soils. The radium equivalent activity Ra eq , the external hazard index H ex , the indoor absorbed dose rate D-bar in air and the annual effective dose equivalent E-bar were evaluated to assess the radiation hazard for people living in dwellings made of the materials studied. All building materials have shown Ra eq (range from 10 to 313Bqkg -1 ) lower than the limit of 370Bqkg -1 set in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development [OECD, 1979. Exposure to radiation from the natural radioactivity in building materials. OECD, Paris] report which is equivalent to a γ-dose of 1.5mSvyr -1 . Except for the gravel from Logbadjeck, all the materials examined are acceptable for use as building materials as defined by the OECD criterion

  4. Natural phenomena hazards evaluation of concrete silos 1, 2, 3 and 4 at Fernald, Ohio

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Char, C.V.; Shiner, T.J.


    Fernald Environmental Management Project (FEMP) is a United States Department of Energy (DOE) site located near Cincinnati, Ohio. FEMP was formerly established as the Feed Materials Production Center (FMPC) in 1951 under the Atomic Energy Commission. FEMP is currently undergoing site wide environmental remediation. This paper addresses four concrete silos built during the 1950s and located in Operable Unit 4 (OU-4). Silos 1 and 2 known as K-65 Silos contain residues from Uranium Ore processing. Silo 3 contains metal oxides in powder form. Silo 4 is empty. The Silos are categorized as low hazard facilities and the Natural Phenomena Hazards (NPH) performance category is PC-2, based on a recently completed safety analysis report. This paper describes the structural evaluation of concrete Silos 1, 2, 3 and 4 for NPH. Non Destructive Tests (NDT) were conducted to establish the current conditions of the silos. Analytical and computer methods were used to evaluate the stresses and displacements for different silo configurations and different loading combinations. Finite element models were developed to uniquely represent each silo, and analyzed using SAP90 computer program. The SAPLOT post processor was used for rapid determination of critical areas of concern for critical loading combinations and for varying silo configurations

  5. Uncertainty on shallow landslide hazard assessment: from field data to hazard mapping (United States)

    Trefolini, Emanuele; Tolo, Silvia; Patelli, Eduardo; Broggi, Matteo; Disperati, Leonardo; Le Tuan, Hai


    Shallow landsliding that involve Hillslope Deposits (HD), the surficial soil that cover the bedrock, is an important process of erosion, transport and deposition of sediment along hillslopes. Despite Shallow landslides generally mobilize relatively small volume of material, they represent the most hazardous factor in mountain regions due to their high velocity and the common absence of warning signs. Moreover, increasing urbanization and likely climate change make shallow landslides a source of widespread risk, therefore the interest of scientific community about this process grown in the last three decades. One of the main aims of research projects involved on this topic, is to perform robust shallow landslides hazard assessment for wide areas (regional assessment), in order to support sustainable spatial planning. Currently, three main methodologies may be implemented to assess regional shallow landslides hazard: expert evaluation, probabilistic (or data mining) methods and physical models based methods. The aim of this work is evaluate the uncertainty of shallow landslides hazard assessment based on physical models taking into account spatial variables such as: geotechnical and hydrogeologic parameters as well as hillslope morphometry. To achieve this goal a wide dataset of geotechnical properties (shear strength, permeability, depth and unit weight) of HD was gathered by integrating field survey, in situ and laboratory tests. This spatial database was collected from a study area of about 350 km2 including different bedrock lithotypes and geomorphological features. The uncertainty associated to each step of the hazard assessment process (e.g. field data collection, regionalization of site specific information and numerical modelling of hillslope stability) was carefully characterized. The most appropriate probability density function (PDF) was chosen for each numerical variable and we assessed the uncertainty propagation on HD strength parameters obtained by

  6. Comments on Potential Geologic and Seismic Hazards Affecting Proposed Liquefied Natural Gas Site in Santa Monica Bay, California (United States)

    Ross, Stephanie L.; Lee, Homa J.; Parsons, Tom E.; Beyer, Larry A.; Boore, David M.; Conrad, James E.; Edwards, Brian D.; Fisher, Michael A.; Frankel, Arthur D.; Geist, Eric L.; Hudnut, Kenneth W.; Hough, Susan E.; Kayen, Robert E.; Lorenson, T.D.; Luco, Nicolas; McCrory, Patricia A.; McGann, Mary; Nathenson, Manuel; Nolan, Michael; Petersen, Mark D.; Ponti, Daniel J.; Powell, Charles L.; Ryan, Holly F.; Tinsley, John C.; Wills, Chris J.; Wong, Florence L.; Xu, Jingping


    In a letter to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) dated March 25, 2008, Representative Jane Harman (California 36th district) requested advice on geologic hazards that should be considered in the review of a proposed liquefied natural gas (LNG) facility off the California coast in Santa Monica Bay. In 2004, the USGS responded to a similar request from Representative Lois Capps, regarding two proposed LNG facilities offshore Ventura County, Calif., with a report summarizing potential geologic and seismic hazards (Ross and others, 2004). The proposed LNG Deepwater Port (DWP) facility includes single point moorings (SPMs) and 35 miles of underwater pipelines. The DWP submersible buoys, manifolds, and risers would be situated on the floor of the southern Santa Monica Basin, in 3,000 feet of water, about 23 miles offshore of the Palos Verdes Peninsula. Twin 24-inch diameter pipelines would extend northeastward from the buoys across the basin floor, up the basin slope and across the continental shelf, skirting north around the Santa Monica submarine canyon. Figure 1 provides locations of the project and geologic features. Acronyms are defined in table 1. This facility is being proposed in a region of known geologic hazards that arise from both the potential for strong earthquakes and geologic processes related to sediment transport and accumulation in the offshore environment. The probability of a damaging earthquake (considered here as magnitude 6.5 or greater) in the next 30 years within about 30 miles (50 km) of the proposed pipeline ranges from 16% at the pipeline's offshore end to 48% where it nears land (Petersen, 2008). Earthquakes of this magnitude are capable of producing strong shaking, surface fault offsets, liquefaction phenomena, landslides, underwater turbidity currents and debris flow avalanches, and tsunamis. As part of the DWP license application for the Woodside Natural Gas proposal in Santa Monica Bay (known as the OceanWay Secure Energy Project), Fugro

  7. Molecular characterization of a naturally occurring intraspecific recombinant begomovirus with close relatives widespread in southern Arabia

    KAUST Repository

    Al-Saleh, Mohammed A


    Background: Tomato leaf curl Sudan virus (ToLCSDV) is a single-stranded DNA begomovirus of tomato that causes downward leaf curl, yellowing, and stunting. Leaf curl disease results in significant yield reduction in tomato crops in the Nile Basin. ToLCSDV symptoms resemble those caused by Tomato yellow leaf curl virus, a distinct and widespread begomovirus originating in the Middle East. In this study, tomato samples exhibiting leaf curl symptoms were collected from Gezira, Sudan. The associated viral genome was molecularly characterized, analyzed phylogenetically, and an infectious clone for one isolate was constructed. Findings. The complete genomes for five newly discovered variants of ToLCSDV, ranging in size from 2765 to 2767-bp, were cloned and sequenced, and subjected to pairwise and phylogenetic analyses. Pairwise analysis indicated that the five Gezira isolates shared 97-100% nucleotide identity with each other. Further, these variants of ToLCSDV shared their highest nucleotide identity at 96-98%, 91-95%, 91-92%, and 91-92% with the Shambat, Gezira, Oman and Yemen strains of ToLCSDV, respectively. Based on the high maximum nucleotide identities shared between these ToLCSDV variants from Gezira and other previously recognized members of this taxonomic group, they are considered isolates of the Shambat strain of ToLCSDV. Analysis of the complete genome sequence for these new variants revealed that they were naturally occurring recombinants between two previously reported strains of ToLCSDV. Finally, a dimeric clone constructed from one representative ToLCSV genome from Gezira was shown to be infectious following inoculation to tomato and N. benthamiana plants. Conclusion: Five new, naturally occurring recombinant begomovirus variants (>96% shared nt identity) were identified in tomato plants from Gezira in Sudan, and shown to be isolates of the Shambat strain of ToLCSDV. The cloned viral genome was infectious in N. benthamiana and tomato plants, and symptoms

  8. The Identification of Filters and Interdependencies for Effective Resource Allocation: Coupling the Mitigation of Natural Hazards to Economic Development. (United States)

    Agar, S. M.; Kunreuther, H.


    Policy formulation for the mitigation and management of risks posed by natural hazards requires that governments confront difficult decisions for resource allocation and be able to justify their spending. Governments also need to recognize when spending offers little improvement and the circumstances in which relatively small amounts of spending can make substantial differences. Because natural hazards can have detrimental impacts on local and regional economies, patterns of economic development can also be affected by spending decisions for disaster mitigation. This paper argues that by mapping interdependencies among physical, social and economic factors, governments can improve resource allocation to mitigate the risks of natural hazards while improving economic development on local and regional scales. Case studies of natural hazards in Turkey have been used to explore specific "filters" that act to modify short- and long-term outcomes. Pre-event filters can prevent an event from becoming a natural disaster or change a routine event into a disaster. Post-event filters affect both short and long-term recovery and development. Some filters cannot be easily modified by spending (e.g., rural-urban migration) but others (e.g., land-use practices) provide realistic spending targets. Net social benefits derived from spending, however, will also depend on the ways by which filters are linked, or so-called "interdependencies". A single weak link in an interdependent system, such as a power grid, can trigger a cascade of failures. Similarly, weak links in social and commercial networks can send waves of disruption through communities. Conversely, by understanding the positive impacts of interdependencies, spending can be targeted to maximize net social benefits while mitigating risks and improving economic development. Detailed information on public spending was not available for this study but case studies illustrate how networks of interdependent filters can modify

  9. Hazards from radioactive waste in perspective

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cohen, B.L.


    This paper compares the hazards from wastes from a 1000-MW(e) nuclear power plant to these from wastes from a 1000-MW(e) coal fueled power plant. The latter hazard is much greater than the former. The toxicity and carcinogenity of the chemicals prodcued in coal burning is emphasized. Comparisions are also made with other toxic chemicals and with natural radioactivity

  10. Best practices in risk and crisis communication: Implications for natural hazards management (United States)

    Toddi A. Steelman; Sarah McCaffrey


    As societies evolve, often the most appropriate response to the hazard must also evolve. However, such shifts in appropriate response to a hazard, whether at the individual or at the societal level, are rarely straightforward: Closing the gap between desired practice and current practice requires effective communication. Although there is a significant literature on...

  11. Flood Hazard Assessment for the Savannah River Site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chen, K.F.


    A method was developed to determine the probabilistic flood elevation curves for certain Savannah River Site (SRS) facilities. This paper presents the method used to determine the probabilistic flood elevation curve for F-Area due to runoff from the Upper Three Runs basin. Department of Energy (DOE) Order 420.1, Facility Safety, outlines the requirements for Natural Phenomena Hazard (NPH) mitigation for new and existing DOE facilities. The NPH considered in this paper is flooding. The facility-specific probabilistic flood hazard curve defines as a function of water elevation the annual probability of occurrence or the return period in years. Based on facility-specific probabilistic flood hazard curves and the nature of facility operations (e.g., involving hazardous or radioactive materials), facility managers can design permanent or temporary devices to prevent the propagation of flood on site, and develop emergency preparedness plans to mitigate the consequences of floods. A method was developed to determine the probabilistic flood hazard curves for SRS facilities. The flood hazard curves for the SRS F-Area due to flooding in the Upper Three Runs basin are presented in this paper

  12. Impacts of ICT on the Spatial Differentiation of Social Vulnerability to Natural Hazards in Poland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Werner Piotr


    Full Text Available The development of information and communication technologies (ICTs has significant economic and social impacts at both the global and regional level. Some of these implications have been perceived as positive and unexpected. While both the positive and negative social and economic impacts have been highlighted in the literature, opinions on these impacts remain ambiguous. Those aspects considered to be advantageous include faster communication, ease of use, development in the range of services and revenues, and an increase in individuals’ free time allowance. ICT penetrates all branches of the economy as a set of general purpose technologies. New information and communication technologies ease everyday life, serve as tools to help people in extreme situations, e.g. accidents, illnesses or natural disasters, and are also the pillars of contemporary entertainment media. The usefulness of ICT has been stressed and loudly disseminated to a large extent by the media. On the other hand, these new technologies sensitize society in quite new ways to the well-known natural hazards that people have encountered in the past.

  13. Geomorphological hazards in Swat valley, Pakistan

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Usman, A.


    This study attempts to describe, interpret and analyze, in depth, the varied geomorphological hazards and their impacts prevailing in the swat valley locate in the northern hilly and mountainous regions of Pakistan. The hills and mountains re zones of high geomorphological activity with rapid rates of weathering, active tectonic activities, abundant precipitation, rapid runoff and heavy sediment transport. Due to the varied topography, lithology, steep slope, erodible soil, heavy winter snowfall and intensive rainfall in the spring and summer seasons, several kinds of geomorphological hazards, such as geomorphic gravitational hazards, Fluvial hazards, Glacial hazards, Geo tectonic hazards, are occurring frequently in swat valley. Amongst them, geomorphic gravitational hazards, such as rock fall rock slide, debris slide mud flow avalanches, are major hazards in mountains and hills while fluvial hazards and sedimentation are mainly confined to the alluvial plain and lowlands of the valley. The Getechtonic hazards, on the other hand, have wide spread distribution in the valley the magnitude and occurrence of each king of hazard is thus, varied according to intensity of process and physical geographic environment. This paper discusses the type distribution and damage due to the various geomorphological hazards and their reduction treatments. The study would to be of particular importance and interest to both natural and social scientists, as well as planner, environmentalists and decision-makers for successful developmental interventions in the region. (author)

  14. Flood hazard assessment for the Savannah River Site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chen, K.F.


    A method was developed to determine the probabilistic flood elevation curves for certain Savannah River Site (SRS) facilities. This paper presents the method used to determine the probabilistic flood elevation curve for F-Area due to runoff from the Upper Three Runs basin. Department of Energy (DOE) Order 420.1, Facility Safety, outlines the requirements for Natural Phenomena Hazard (NPH) mitigation for new and existing DOE facilities. The NPH considered in this paper is flooding. The facility-specific probabilistic flood hazard curve defines as a function of water elevation the annual probability of occurrence or the return period in years. Based on facility-specific probabilistic flood hazard curves and the nature of facility operations (e.g., involving hazardous or radioactive materials), facility managers can design permanent or temporary devices to prevent the propagation of flood on site, and develop emergency preparedness plans to mitigate the consequences of floods. The flood hazard curves for the SRS F-Area due to flooding in the Upper Three Runs basin are presented in this paper

  15. Estimation of possible radiological hazards from natural radioactivity in commercially-utilized ornamental and countertops granite tiles

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Turhan, Şeref


    Highlights: ► The study presents the activity concentrations of radionuclides in granite tile samples. ► The activity concentrations of radionuclides are measured by gamma spectrometer.. ► In this study, possible radiological hazards from usage of these materials are estimated. ► The external exposure index and internal index are calculated. ► The indoor absorbed gamma dose rate and the corresponding annual effective dose are evaluated. - Abstract: The aim of this study is to estimate natural radioactivity levels of commercially-utilized ornamental or countertops granite tiles collected from major retailers in Turkey and possible radiological hazards from usage of these materials by calculating external exposure and internal index, indoor absorbed gamma dose rate and the corresponding annual effective dose. The activity concentrations of 226 Ra, 232 Th and 40 K were determined for 42 kinds of different granite tiles using high-resolution gamma-ray spectrometer. The activity concentration of 226 Ra, 232 Th and 40 K varied from 9.2 to 192.5 Bq kg −1 (with a mean of 88.4 ± 6.9 Bq kg −1 ), 7.5 to 344.6 Bq kg −1 (with a mean of 95.3 ± 10.0 Bq kg −1 ) and 92.1 to 4155.9 Bq kg −1 (with a mean of 1055.2 ± 103.0 Bq kg −1 ), respectively. The estimated radiological hazard indices were revised in the light of the relevant national and international legislation and guidance. The values of the radiological hazard indices were found to be within relevant all limit values for superficial materials. The indoor absorbed gamma dose rates estimated from the activity concentrations of 226 Ra, 232 Th and 40 K and the corresponding annual effective doses varied from 4.74 to 85.27 nGy h −1 and 0.02 to 0.42 mSv, respectively.

  16. Development of a module for Cost-Benefit analysis of risk reduction measures for natural hazards for the CHANGES-SDSS platform (United States)

    Berlin, Julian; Bogaard, Thom; Van Westen, Cees; Bakker, Wim; Mostert, Eric; Dopheide, Emile


    Cost benefit analysis (CBA) is a well know method used widely for the assessment of investments either in the private and public sector. In the context of risk mitigation and the evaluation of risk reduction alternatives for natural hazards its use is very important to evaluate the effectiveness of such efforts in terms of avoided monetary losses. However the current method has some disadvantages related to the spatial distribution of the costs and benefits, the geographical distribution of the avoided damage and losses, the variation in areas that are benefited in terms of invested money and avoided monetary risk. Decision-makers are often interested in how the costs and benefits are distributed among different administrative units of a large area or region, so they will be able to compare and analyse the cost and benefits per administrative unit as a result of the implementation of the risk reduction projects. In this work we first examined the Cost benefit procedure for natural hazards, how the costs are assessed for several structural and non-structural risk reduction alternatives, we also examined the current problems of the method such as the inclusion of cultural and social considerations that are complex to monetize , the problem of discounting future values using a defined interest rate and the spatial distribution of cost and benefits. We also examined the additional benefits and the indirect costs associated with the implementation of the risk reduction alternatives such as the cost of having a ugly landscape (also called negative benefits). In the last part we examined the current tools and software used in natural hazards assessment with support to conduct CBA and we propose design considerations for the implementation of the CBA module for the CHANGES-SDSS Platform an initiative of the ongoing 7th Framework Programme "CHANGES of the European commission. Keywords: Risk management, Economics of risk mitigation, EU Flood Directive, resilience, prevention

  17. Flood Hazard Assessment for the Savannah River Site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chen, K.F.


    'A method was developed to determine the probabilistic flood elevation curves for certain Savannah River Site (SRS) facilities. This paper presents the method used to determine the probabilistic flood elevation curve for F-Area due to runoff from the Upper Three Runs basin. Department of Energy (DOE) Order 420.1, Facility Safety, outlines the requirements for Natural Phenomena Hazard (NPH) mitigation for new and existing DOE facilities. The NPH considered in this paper is flooding. The facility-specific probabilistic flood hazard curve defines as a function of water elevation the annual probability of occurrence or the return period in years. Based on facility-specific probabilistic flood hazard curves and the nature of facility operations (e.g., involving hazardous or radioactive materials), facility managers can design permanent or temporary devices to prevent the propagation of flood on site, and develop emergency preparedness plans to mitigate the consequences of floods.'

  18. Earthquake Hazard Analysis Methods: A Review (United States)

    Sari, A. M.; Fakhrurrozi, A.


    One of natural disasters that have significantly impacted on risks and damage is an earthquake. World countries such as China, Japan, and Indonesia are countries located on the active movement of continental plates with more frequent earthquake occurrence compared to other countries. Several methods of earthquake hazard analysis have been done, for example by analyzing seismic zone and earthquake hazard micro-zonation, by using Neo-Deterministic Seismic Hazard Analysis (N-DSHA) method, and by using Remote Sensing. In its application, it is necessary to review the effectiveness of each technique in advance. Considering the efficiency of time and the accuracy of data, remote sensing is used as a reference to the assess earthquake hazard accurately and quickly as it only takes a limited time required in the right decision-making shortly after the disaster. Exposed areas and possibly vulnerable areas due to earthquake hazards can be easily analyzed using remote sensing. Technological developments in remote sensing such as GeoEye-1 provide added value and excellence in the use of remote sensing as one of the methods in the assessment of earthquake risk and damage. Furthermore, the use of this technique is expected to be considered in designing policies for disaster management in particular and can reduce the risk of natural disasters such as earthquakes in Indonesia.

  19. Assessment of natural radionuclides and its radiological hazards from tiles made in Nigeria (United States)

    Joel, E. S.; Maxwell, O.; Adewoyin, O. O.; Ehi-Eromosele, C. O.; Embong, Z.; Saeed, M. A.


    Activity concentration of 10 different brands of tiles made in Nigeria were analyzed using High purity Germanium gamma detector and its hazard indices such as absorbed dose rate, radium equivalent activity, external Hazard Index (Hex), internal Hazard Index (Hin), Annual Effective Dose (mSv/y), Gamma activity Index (Iγ) and Alpha Index (Iα) were determined. The result showed that the average activity concentrations of radionuclides (226Ra, 232Th and 40K) content are within the recommended limit. The average radium equivalent is within the recommended limit of 370 Bq/kg. The result obtained further showed that the mean values for the absorbed dose rate (D), external and internal hazard index, the annual effective dose (AEDR) equivalent, gamma activity index and Alpha Index were: 169.22 nGyh-1, 0.95 and 1.14, 1.59 mSv/y, 1.00 Sv yr-1 and 0.34 respectively. The result established that radiological hazards such as absorbed dose rate, internal hazard, annual effective dose rate, gamma activity index and Alpha Index for some samples are found to be slightly close or above international recommended values. The result for the present study was compared with tiles sample from others countries, it was observed that the concentration of tiles made in Nigeria and other countries are closer, however recommends proper radiation monitoring for some tiles made in Nigeria before usage due to the long term health effect.

  20. An analysis of land use planning and equity issues surrounding hazardous liquid and natural gas transmission pipelines in North Carolina (United States)

    Osland, Anna Christine

    Hazardous liquid and natural gas transmission pipelines have received limited attention by planning scholars even though local development decisions can have broad consequences if a rupture occurs. In this dissertation, I evaluated the implications of land-use planning for reducing risk to transmission pipeline hazards in North Carolina via three investigations. First, using a survey of planning directors in jurisdictions with transmission pipeline hazards, I investigated the land use planning tools used to mitigate pipeline hazards and the factors associated with tool adoption. Planning scholars have documented the difficulty of inducing planning in hazardous areas, yet there remain gaps in knowledge about the factors associated with tool adoption. Despite the risks associated with pipeline ruptures, I found most localities use few mitigation tools, and the adoption of regulatory and informational tools appear to be influenced by divergent factors. Whereas risk perception, commitment, capacity, and community context were associated with total tool and information tool use, only risk perception and capacity factors were associated with regulatory tool use. Second, using interviews of emergency managers and planning directors, I examined the role of agency collaboration for building mitigation capacity. Scholars have highlighted the potential of technical collaboration, yet less research has investigated how inter-agency collaboration shapes mitigation capacity. I identify three categories of technical collaboration, discuss how collaborative spillovers can occur from one planning area to another, and challenge the notion that all technical collaborations result in equal mitigation outcomes. Third, I evaluated characteristics of the population near pipelines to address equity concerns. Surprisingly, I did not find broad support for differences in exposure of vulnerable populations. Nonetheless, my analyses uncovered statistically significant clusters of vulnerable

  1. Assessment of natural radioactivity and radiation hazard indices in soil samples of East Khasi Hills District, Meghalaya, India (United States)

    Lyngkhoi, B.; Nongkynrih, P.


    The Activity Concentrations of naturally occurring radionuclides such as 40K, 238U and 232Th were determined from 20 (twenty) villages of East Khasi Hills District of Meghalaya, India using gamma-ray spectroscopy. This District is adjacent to the South-West Khasi Hills District located in the same state where heavy deposit of uranium has been identified [1]. The measured activities of 40K, 238U and 232Th were found ranging from 93.4 to 606.3, 23.2 to 140.9 and 25.1 to 158.9 Bq kg-1 with their average values of 207.9, 45.6 and 63.8 Bq kg-1, respectively. The obtained value of activity concentration for 40K is lower than the world average value 400.0 Bq kg-1 while for 238U and 232Th, the average concentrations are above the world average values 35.0 and 30.0 Bq kg-1, respectively. The calculated Absorbed Dose Rate gamma-radiation of the natural radionuclides ranged from 37.4 to 186.5 nGy h-1 with an average of 71.3 nGy h-1. The outdoor Annual Effective Dose Rate received by an individual ranged from 50.0-230.0 µSv y-1 with an average value of 87.5 µSv y-1. The physical and chemical properties of the soil have no effects on the naturally occurring radionuclides concentrations. This has been revealed by the results obtained as there is no positive correlation between physical/chemical parameters and the radionuclides concentrations in the soil samples [2]. It is observed that good positive correlations among the radionuclides concentrations and with the measured dose rate prevail. The findings show that the values of external and internal hazard indices resulting from the measured activity concentrations of natural radionuclides in soil from the collected sampling areas are less than the International Recommended safety limits of 1 (unity) with the exception of Mylliem (1.12) where the External hazard index is slightly higher.

  2. A new web-based course: dealing with glaciers and permafrost hazards (United States)

    Oswald, S.; Kaeaeb, A.; Haeberli, W.


    The intensive human use of high mountains intersects more and more with the hazard zones of such environments. Because of the complexity of such processes and impacts, dealing with such risks requires a broad education in many sub-domains of the earth sciences and the socio-economic field. Inter- and trans-disciplinary training and education of professionals is therefore essential. Thus the goal of the Swiss Virtual Campus project "Dealing with Natural Hazards" is to provide such a course program covering the basics of dealing with natural hazards, including technical, environmental and social aspects. In the field of natural hazards and risk management, education at the Swiss universities is mostly structured in narrow sectors. Using the advantages of the internet, the Virtual Campus provides teachers and students an interdisciplinary discussion platform on the integral approach and the handling with natural hazards. The course content is organised in 5 modules: 1 basic knowledge and tools, 2 hydrological / meteorological hazards, 3 geological hazards, 4 vulnerability of property and of socio-economic systems and 5 integral natural risk management. To ensure a national and international access the courses are designed in English and published on the internet. Within the scope of this project we are developing lessons in the subject area of natural hazards related to glaciers and permafrost. These are ice avalanches, glacier floods, glacier length variations and permafrost. The content is divided into chapters, which are consistent over the entire module: (1) processes: characterisation of the different processes, (2) triggering: initiating events, (3) data acquisition, mapping and monitoring: appropriate methods, (4) estimation models: application of the adequate model, (5) combinations and interactions: interrelation and impacts of different hazards, (6) long-term effects: global change effects, (7) integral hazard recognition and assessment: integral proceedings


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Željko Miklin


    Full Text Available In making the article, several thematic maps with scale 1:25000 were used. It is the lithological map with outlined engineering geological units, the inclination map with four categories and the landslide map with the areas with increased erosion and generally unstable areas are shown, structural-geomorphological map, surface and groundwater condition map and hydrogeological map. The last one was used with the aim to evaluate the influence of hydrogeological relationship on the synthetic hazard map. The integration of facts from all the maps and engineering evaluation lead to new quality that was presented in the last - synthetic, qualitative map of prognostic meaning. They have been adopted as the factor maps and with their overlapping the map with new contents was made. The Preliminary qualitative map of sliding hazard, including the erosion, was made by heuristic approach, as a predecessor to the hazard map. Such maps proved to be very useful as bases for spatial and development planning on the regional level as well as for evaluation of the site suitability for building.

  4. Focused study of interweaving hazards across the Caribbean (United States)

    Braun, John J.; Mattioli, Glen S.; Calais, Eric; Carlson, David; Dixon, Timothy H.; Jackson, Michael E.; Kursinski, E. Robert; Mora-Paez, Hector; Miller, M. Meghan; Pandya, Rajul; Robertson, Richard; Wang, Guoquan


    The Caribbean is a region of lush vegetation, beaches, active volcanoes, and significant mountain ranges, all of which create a natural aesthetic that is recognized globally. Yet these very same features, molded through geological, oceanic, and atmospheric processes, also pose natural hazards for the developing countries in the Caribbean. The rise in population density, migration to coastal areas, and substandard building practices, combined with the threat of natural hazards, put the region's human population at risk for particularly devastating disasters. These demographic and social characteristics exist against a backdrop of the threat of an evolving climate, which produces a more vigorous hurricane environment and a rising average sea level.

  5. Natural Environmental Hazards Reflected in High-Altitude Patagonian Lake Sediments (lake Caviahue, Argentina) (United States)

    Müller, Anne; Scharf, Burkhard; von Tümpling, Wolf; Pirrung, Michael


    Two 6-m long sediment cores drilled in the two basins of Lake Caviahue give new evidence of the impact of natural hazards such as ash fallouts linked to nearby volcanic eruptions in the ecologically sensitive environment of the high-altitude region of the Argentinan Patagonian Andes. The two cores show distinct signals of changes in autochthonous productivity and terrigenous input into the lake from ash fallout as well as from river load and shore erosion. Multiproxy records of the sediments indicate whether these changes can be related to volcanic activity. High values of magnetic susceptibility in the cores reflect periods of basaltic ash fallouts during eruptions of the nearby Copahue Volcano. The southern basin is located in the prevalent direction of ash fallouts and has been affected by these volcanic inputs more intensely than the northern basin of the lake. In contrast, sedimentation and authochthonous productivity in the northern basin are strongly affected by fluvial inputs such as suspended river load and acidic stream waters.

  6. Growing Atmospheric Pollution and Its Relation with Occurrences of Natural Hazards in India (United States)

    Singh, Ramesh

    In the last three decades, multi satellite remote sensing data have revealed increasing atmospheric pollution. The satellite data have shown spatial distribution of fine and coarse atmospheric particles which impact human health, cloud albedo and atmospheric and meteorological parameters. The long range dusts coming over India travel through Arabian Sea and reach to the Bay of Bengal, such long range transport of dust influences atmospheric and ocean parameters, as a result strong coupling exists between land-ocean-atmosphere. Various kind of natural hazards, such as cyclone, algal bloom, cloud burst, excessive rainfall have been observed apart from the intense fog, haze and smog during winter and post monsoon seasons that have serious impacts on human health of people living in the Indo-Gangetic basin. The long range transport of dust and local anthropogenic emissions also reach to the Himalayan region affecting snow and glaciers of Himalaya and accelerating melting of snow and glaciers which is a threat of flooding of rivers originate from Himalayan region.

  7. Multi-hazard approaches to civil infrastructure engineering

    CERN Document Server

    LaFave, James


    This collection focuses on the development of novel approaches to address one of the most pressing challenges of civil engineering, namely the mitigation of natural hazards. Numerous engineering books to date have focused on, and illustrate considerable progress toward, mitigation of individual hazards (earthquakes, wind, and so forth.). The current volume addresses concerns related to overall safety, sustainability and resilience of the built environment when subject to multiple hazards: natural disaster events that are concurrent and either correlated (e.g., wind and surge); uncorrelated (e.g., earthquake and flood); cascading (e.g., fire following earthquake); or uncorrelated and occurring at different times (e.g., wind and earthquake). The authors examine a range of specific topics including methodologies for vulnerability assessment of structures, new techniques to reduce the system demands through control systems; instrumentation, monitoring and condition assessment of structures and foundations; new te...

  8. Cloudy with a Chance of Solar Flares: The Sun as a Natural Hazard (United States)

    Pellish, Jonathan


    Space weather is a naturally occurring phenomenon that represents a quantifiable risk to space- and ground-based infrastructure as well as society at large. Space weather hazards include permanent and correctable faults in computer systems, Global Positioning System (GPS) and high-frequency communication disturbances, increased airline passenger and astronaut radiation exposure, and electric grid disruption. From the National Space Weather Strategy, published by the Office of Science and Technology Policy in October 2015, space weather refers to the dynamic conditions of the space environment that arise from emissions from the Sun, which include solar flares, solar energetic particles, and coronal mass ejections. These emissions can interact with Earth and its surrounding space, including the Earth's magnetic field, potentially disrupting technologies and infrastructures. Space weather is measured using a range of space- and ground-based platforms that directly monitor the Sun, the Earth's magnetic field, the conditions in interplanetary space and impacts at Earth's surface, like neutron ground-level enhancement. The NASA Goddard Space Flight Center's Space Weather Research Center and their international collaborators in government, industry, and academia are working towards improved techniques for predicting space weather as part of the strategy and action plan to better quantify and mitigate space weather hazards. In addition to accurately measuring and predicting space weather, we also need to continue developing more advanced techniques for evaluating space weather impacts on space- and ground-based infrastructure. Within the Earth's atmosphere, elevated neutron flux driven by atmosphere-particle interactions from space weather is a primary risk source. Ground-based neutron sources form an essential foundation for quantifying space weather impacts in a variety of systems.

  9. Hazard index for underground toxic material

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Smith, C.F.; Cohen, J.J.; McKone, T.E.


    To adequately define the problem of waste management, quantitative measures of hazard must be used. This study reviews past work in the area of hazard indices and proposes a geotoxicity hazard index for use in characterizing the hazard of toxic material buried underground. Factors included in this index are: an intrinsic toxicity factor, formulated as the volume of water required for dilution to public drinking-water levels; a persistence factor to characterize the longevity of the material, ranging from unity for stable materials to smaller values for shorter-lived materials; an availability factor that relates the transport potential for the particular material to a reference value for its naturally occurring analog; and a correction factor to accommodate the buildup of decay progeny, resulting in increased toxicity

  10. Hazard index for underground toxic material

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Smith, C.F.; Cohen, J.J.; McKone, T.E.


    To adequately define the problem of waste management, quantitative measures of hazard must be used. This study reviews past work in the area of hazard indices and proposes a geotoxicity hazard index for use in characterizing the hazard of toxic material buried underground. Factors included in this index are: an intrinsic toxicity factor, formulated as the volume of water required for dilution to public drinking-water levels; a persistence factor to characterize the longevity of the material, ranging from unity for stable materials to smaller values for shorter-lived materials; an availability factor that relates the transport potential for the particular material to a reference value for its naturally occurring analog; and a correction factor to accommodate the buildup of decay progeny, resulting in increased toxicity.

  11. Rainfall-triggered landslides, anthropogenic hazards, and mitigation strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. C. Larsen


    Full Text Available Rainfall-triggered landslides are part of a natural process of hillslope erosion that can result in catastrophic loss of life and extensive property damage in mountainous, densely populated areas. As global population expansion on or near steep hillslopes continues, the human and economic costs associated with landslides will increase. Landslide hazard mitigation strategies generally involve hazard assessment mapping, warning systems, control structures, and regional landslide planning and policy development. To be sustainable, hazard mitigation requires that management of natural resources is closely connected to local economic and social interests. A successful strategy is dependent on a combination of multi-disciplinary scientific and engineering approaches, and the political will to take action at the local community to national scale.

  12. Management of Combined Natural Risks - A New Approach: Keynote Address (United States)

    Hanisch, Jörg

    A new attempt is made to illustrate and to quantify the relationships of individual natural hazards, their combinations and the human vulnerability to natural hazards. During many catastrophic events, combinations of different natural events aggravate their occurrence substantially. Earthquakes are frequently associated with heavy landsliding (El Salvador 2001) and heavy rainstorms are able to trigger fast running debris flows and not only floods (like during the Mitch disaster in Central America in 1998). That signifies that natural hazard maps should show the combinations of different hazards and their genetic relationships. To put into effect this, first, the individual hazards have to be assessed and presented in hazard zones (0 to 3). Then these hazards zones will be overlain using GIS techniques. In this way, e.g., an earthquake-prone area which coincides with an area susceptible to landslides (ranking 0 to 3 as well) can show hazard concentrations of up to a value of 6, simply adding the individual hazard zones. To get the result of the corresponding risk zones, the vulnerability maps of human settlements and infra-structure have to be overlain on the maps of these combinations of natural hazards.

  13. Regulation and Control of Hazardous Wastes


    Hans W. Gottinger


    Hazardous waste regulations require disposal in approved dumpsites, where environmental consequences are minimal but entry may be privately very costly. Imperfect policing of regulations makes the socially more costly option illicit disposal preferable form the perspective of the private decision maker. The existence of the waste disposal decision, its economic nature, production independence, and the control over environmental damage are key issues in the economics of hazardous waste managem...

  14. Widespread pain: is an improved classification possible? (United States)

    MacFarlane, G J; Croft, P R; Schollum, J; Silman, A J


    The classification of widespread pain, proposed by the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) for use in the clinic as a screen for fibromyalgia, as described, does not require truly widespread pain. Studies considering the epidemiology of widespread pain per se may therefore require a definition with greater face validity, which might also show enhanced associations with other physical and psychological measures. We aimed to develop a more coherent definition of widespread pain for use in epidemiological studies and to compare performance in identifying individuals with significant morbidity. A group of 172 subjects who had participated in a community based study on the occurrence of pain were identified and categorized by their pain experience as indicated on line drawings of the body according to ACR definition and to a new, more stringent definition that required the presence of more diffuse limb pain. A number of other clinical and psychological measures were recorded for these individuals and the association between their pain status measures and these other variables was assessed and compared. Persons satisfying the newly proposed definition for chronic widespread pain, in comparison with those who satisfied only the present ACR definition, had a significantly higher score on the General Health Questionnaire [median difference (MD) 7.95% CI 1.13], a higher score on the Health and Fatigue Questionnaire (MD 10.95% CI 0.15), and greater problems with sleep (sleep problem score MD 4.95% CI 0.9). Those satisfying the new definition also had a greater number of tender points on examination (MD 3.95% CI -1.7). The morbidity of those satisfying only the present ACR definition was closer to persons who had regional pain. A redefinition of widespread pain has produced a group of subjects whose pain is (a) likely to be more "widespread" and (b) is associated more strongly with factors such as psychological disturbance, fatigue, sleep problems, and tender points, and

  15. NHERI: Advancing the Research Infrastructure of the Multi-Hazard Community (United States)

    Blain, C. A.; Ramirez, J. A.; Bobet, A.; Browning, J.; Edge, B.; Holmes, W.; Johnson, D.; Robertson, I.; Smith, T.; Zuo, D.


    The Natural Hazards Engineering Research Infrastructure (NHERI), supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF), is a distributed, multi-user national facility that provides the natural hazards research community with access to an advanced research infrastructure. Components of NHERI are comprised of a Network Coordination Office (NCO), a cloud-based cyberinfrastructure (DesignSafe-CI), a computational modeling and simulation center (SimCenter), and eight Experimental Facilities (EFs), including a post-disaster, rapid response research facility (RAPID). Utimately NHERI enables researchers to explore and test ground-breaking concepts to protect homes, businesses and infrastructure lifelines from earthquakes, windstorms, tsunamis, and surge enabling innovations to help prevent natural hazards from becoming societal disasters. When coupled with education and community outreach, NHERI will facilitate research and educational advances that contribute knowledge and innovation toward improving the resiliency of the nation's civil infrastructure to withstand natural hazards. The unique capabilities and coordinating activities over Year 1 between NHERI's DesignSafe-CI, the SimCenter, and individual EFs will be presented. Basic descriptions of each component are also found at Additionally to be discussed are the various roles of the NCO in leading development of a 5-year multi-hazard science plan, coordinating facility scheduling and fostering the sharing of technical knowledge and best practices, leading education and outreach programs such as the recent Summer Institute and multi-facility REU program, ensuring a platform for technology transfer to practicing engineers, and developing strategic national and international partnerships to support a diverse multi-hazard research and user community.

  16. The role of ethics and deontology is essential must be reinforced in geosciences. Focus natural hazards and catastrophic risk. (United States)

    Zango-Pascual, Marga


    Marga Zango-Pascual Area: Environmental Technologies. Department: Chemical, Physical and Natural Systems. Universidad Pablo de Olavide, Seville, Spain. In todaýs globalized and changing world, Natural Hazard Management is becoming a priority. It is essential for us to combine both global and interdisciplinary approaches with in-depth knowledge about the natural hazards that may cause damage to both people and property. Many catastrophic events have to see with geological hazards. Science and technology, and particularly geosciences, play an essential role. But this role is often not used, because it is not integrated into the legislation or public policy enacted by those who must manage risk to prevent disasters from occurring. Not only here and now, but also everywhere, whenever decisions are made on disaster risk reduction, we must call for the role of geology to be taken into account. And we must note that in several countries including Spain, the study of geology is being slighted in both universities and secondary education. If the discipline of geology disappears from formal education, there would be serious consequences. This warning has already been issued once and again, for instance in the 2007 Quarterly Natural Sciences Newsletter in relation to Katrina and The Tsunami in the Indian Ocean. There, the fact that knowledge of geoscience may be indispensable for attenuating the effects of natural disasters and that knowledge of geoscience benefits society always is clearly stated. And this necessarily includes generating and makings the best possible use of legislation and public policy where daily decisions are made both on risk management and everything that managing threats involves. The role of geology and geologists is essential and must be reinforced. But, we cannot forgive that is necessary to form of the professional of geology in law and ethical principles. And of course a deontological approach should be maintained. The role of

  17. Personality disparity in chronic regional and widespread pain. (United States)

    Chang, Mei-Chung; Chen, Po-Fei; Lung, For-Wey


    Chronic pain has high comorbidity with psychiatric disorders, therefore, better understanding of the relationship between chronic pain and mental illness is needed. This study aimed to investigate the pathway relationships among parental attachment, personality characteristics, alexithymic trait and mental health in patients with chronic widespread pain, those with chronic regional pain, and controls. Two hundred and thirty participants were recruited. The parental Bonding Inventory, Eysenck Personality Inventory (EPI), 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20), Chinese Health Questionnaire, and Short-Form 36 were filled out. The pathway relationships revealed that patients of mothers who were more protective were more neurotic, had more difficulty identifying feelings (DIF), worse mental health, and a higher association with chronic widespread pain. No differences were found between patients with chronic regional pain and the controls. The predisposing factors for chronic widespread pain, when compared with chronic regional pain, may be more closely related to psychiatric disorders. The pathways to chronic regional pain and chronic widespread pain differ, with neuroticism and the alexithymic DIF trait being the main factors defining chronic widespread pain. Therefore, besides therapies targeting pain symptoms, psychiatric consultation, medication and psychotherapy are also recommended for those with chronic widespread pain to alleviate their mental health conditions. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. A Case Study of Geologic Hazards Affecting School Buildings: Evaluating Seismic Structural Vulnerability and Landslide Hazards at Schools in Aizawl, India (United States)

    Perley, M. M.; Guo, J.


    India's National School Safety Program (NSSP) aims to assess all government schools in earthquake prone regions of the country. To supplement the Mizoram State Government's recent survey of 141 government schools, we screened an additional 16 private and 4 government schools for structural vulnerabilities due to earthquakes, as well as landslide hazards, in Mizoram's capital of Aizawl. We developed a geomorphologically derived landslide susceptibility matrix, which was cross-checked with Aizawl Municipal Corporation's landslide hazard map (provided by Lettis Consultants International), to determine the geologic hazards at each school. Our research indicates that only 7% of the 22 assessed school buildings are located within low landslide hazard zones; 64% of the school buildings, with approximately 9,500 students, are located within very high or high landslide hazard zones. Rapid Visual Screening (RVS) was used to determine the structural earthquake vulnerability of each school building. RVS is an initial vulnerability assessment procedure used to inventory and rank buildings that may be hazardous during an earthquake. Our study indicates that all of the 22 assessed school buildings have a damageability rating of Grade 3 or higher on the 5-grade EMS scale, suggesting a significant vulnerability and potential for damage in buildings, ranging from widespread cracking of columns and beam column joints to collapse. Additionally, 86% of the schools we visited had reinforced concrete buildings constructed before Aizawl's building regulations were passed in 2007, which can be assumed to lack appropriate seismic reinforcement. Using our findings, we will give recommendations to the Government of Mizoram to prevent unnecessary loss of life by minimizing each school's landslide risk and ensuring schools are earthquake-resistant.

  19. 75 FR 44920 - National Oil and Hazardous Substances Pollution Contingency Plan; National Priorities List... (United States)


    ... State Registry of Inactive Hazardous Waste Disposal Sites as a ``Class 2 Inactive Hazardous Waste Site..., Chemicals, Hazardous waste, Hazardous substances, Intergovernmental relations, Natural resources, Oil... and Hazardous Substances Pollution Contingency Plan; National Priorities List: Deletion of the SMS...

  20. Capturing spatial and temporal patterns of widespread, extreme flooding across Europe (United States)

    Busby, Kathryn; Raven, Emma; Liu, Ye


    Statistical characterisation of physical hazards is an integral part of probabilistic catastrophe models used by the reinsurance industry to estimate losses from large scale events. Extreme flood events are not restricted by country boundaries which poses an issue for reinsurance companies as their exposures often extend beyond them. We discuss challenges and solutions that allow us to appropriately capture the spatial and temporal dependence of extreme hydrological events on a continental-scale, which in turn enables us to generate an industry-standard stochastic event set for estimating financial losses for widespread flooding. By presenting our event set methodology, we focus on explaining how extreme value theory (EVT) and dependence modelling are used to account for short, inconsistent hydrological data from different countries, and how to make appropriate statistical decisions that best characterise the nature of flooding across Europe. The consistency of input data is of vital importance when identifying historical flood patterns. Collating data from numerous sources inherently causes inconsistencies and we demonstrate our robust approach to assessing the data and refining it to compile a single consistent dataset. This dataset is then extrapolated using a parameterised EVT distribution to estimate extremes. Our method then captures the dependence of flood events across countries using an advanced multivariate extreme value model. Throughout, important statistical decisions are explored including: (1) distribution choice; (2) the threshold to apply for extracting extreme data points; (3) a regional analysis; (4) the definition of a flood event, which is often linked with reinsurance industry's hour's clause; and (5) handling of missing values. Finally, having modelled the historical patterns of flooding across Europe, we sample from this model to generate our stochastic event set comprising of thousands of events over thousands of years. We then briefly

  1. Qualitative and Quantitative Assessment of Naturals Hazards in the Caldera of Mount Bambouto (West Cameroon) (United States)

    Zangmo Tefogoum, G.; Kagou Dongmo, A.; Nkouathio, D. G.; Wandji, P.


    Mount Bambouto is polygenic stratovolcano of the Cameroon Volcanic Line, build between 21 Ma and 4,5Ma (Nkouathio et al., 2008). It is situated at about 200 km NE of mount Cameroon, at 09°55' and 10°15' East and, 05°25' and 05°50' Nord. This volcano covers an area of 500 Km2 and culminates at 2740 m at Meletan hill and bears a collapse caldera (13 x 8 km). Fissural, extrusive and explosive dynamism are responsible of the construction in three main stages this volcano including the edification of a sommital large rim caldera. Mount Bambouto structure gives rise to different natural hazards, of volcanological origin and meteorological origin. In the past time, landslides, floodings, firebush, blocks collapse took place in this area with catastrophic impact on the population. New research program had been carried out in the caldera concerning qualitative and quantitative evaluation of natural risks and catastrophes. The main factors of instability are rain, structure of the basement, slopes, lithology and anthropic activities; particularly, the occurrence of exceptional rainfall due to global change are relevant; this gives opportunity to draw landslides hazards zonation map of the Bambouto caldera which is the main risk in this area. We evaluate the financial potential of the caldera base on the average income of breeding, farming, school fees and the cost of houses and equipments for each family. The method of calculation revealed that, the yearly economy of the mounts Bambouto caldera represents about 2 billions FCFA. Some recommendations have been made in order to prevent and reduced the potential losses and the number of victims in particular by better land use planning. These help us to estimate the importance of destruction of the environment and biodiversity in case of catastrophes. We conclude that in the Bambouto caldera there is moderate to high probability that destructive phenomena due to landslides occurs within the upcoming years with enormous

  2. Mathematical Decision Models Applied for Qualifying and Planning Areas Considering Natural Hazards and Human Dealing (United States)

    Anton, Jose M.; Grau, Juan B.; Tarquis, Ana M.; Sanchez, Elena; Andina, Diego


    The authors were involved in the use of some Mathematical Decision Models, MDM, to improve knowledge and planning about some large natural or administrative areas for which natural soils, climate, and agro and forest uses where main factors, but human resources and results were important, natural hazards being relevant. In one line they have contributed about qualification of lands of the Community of Madrid, CM, administrative area in centre of Spain containing at North a band of mountains, in centre part of Iberian plateau and river terraces, and also Madrid metropolis, from an official study of UPM for CM qualifying lands using a FAO model from requiring minimums of a whole set of Soil Science criteria. The authors set first from these criteria a complementary additive qualification, and tried later an intermediate qualification from both using fuzzy logic. The authors were also involved, together with colleagues from Argentina et al. that are in relation with local planners, for the consideration of regions and of election of management entities for them. At these general levels they have adopted multi-criteria MDM, used a weighted PROMETHEE, and also an ELECTRE-I with the same elicited weights for the criteria and data, and at side AHP using Expert Choice from parallel comparisons among similar criteria structured in two levels. The alternatives depend on the case study, and these areas with monsoon climates have natural hazards that are decisive for their election and qualification with an initial matrix used for ELECTRE and PROMETHEE. For the natural area of Arroyos Menores at South of Rio Cuarto town, with at North the subarea of La Colacha, the loess lands are rich but suffer now from water erosions forming regressive ditches that are spoiling them, and use of soils alternatives must consider Soil Conservation and Hydraulic Management actions. The use of soils may be in diverse non compatible ways, as autochthonous forest, high value forest, traditional

  3. Applications of UAV Photogrammetric Surveys to Natural Hazard Detection and Cultural Heritage Documentation (United States)

    Trizzino, Rosamaria; Caprioli, Mauro; Mazzone, Francesco; Scarano, Mario


    Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) systems are increasingly seen as an attractive low-cost alternative or supplement to aerial and terrestrial photogrammetry due to their low cost, flexibility, availability and readiness for duty. In addition, UAVs can be operated in hazardous or temporarily inaccessible locations. The combination of photogrammetric aerial and terrestrial recording methods using a mini UAV (also known as "drone") opens a broad range of applications, such as surveillance and monitoring of the environment and infrastructural assets. In particular, these methods and techniques are of paramount interest for the documentation of cultural heritage sites and areas of natural importance, facing threats from natural deterioration and hazards. In order to verify the reliability of these technologies an UAV survey and a LIDAR survey have been carried out along about 1 km of coast in the Salento peninsula, near the towns of San Foca, Torre dell' Orso and SantAndrea ( Lecce, Southern Italy). This area is affected by serious environmental hazards due to the presence of dangerous rocky cliffs named "falesie". The UAV platform was equipped with a photogrammetric measurement system that allowed us to obtain a mobile mapping of the fractured fronts of dangerous rocky cliffs. UAV-images data have been processed using dedicated software (Agisoft Photoscan). The point clouds obtained from both the UAV and LIDAR surveys have been processed using Cloud Compare software, with the aim of testing the UAV results with respect to the LIDAR ones. The analysis were done using the C2C algorithm which provides good results in terms of Euclidian distances, highlighting differences between the 3D models obtained from both the survey techiques. The total error obtained was of centimeter-order that is a very satisfactory result. In the the 2nd study area, the opportunities of obtaining more detailed documentation of cultural goods throughout UAV survey have been investigated. The study

  4. Natural hazards and decision-making in the most densely populated country in the American continent: a 20-year perspective (United States)

    Cruz Martínez, Celina; Cepeda, Jose


    With a population density of ~300 per km2, El Salvador is the most densely populated country in the American continent and the capital, San Salvador, is probably the city in the Americas most frequently hit by natural hazards, earthquakes in particular. As a consequence of a magnitude 5.4 earthquake in 1986, 1500 people were killed, with as many as one-third of these casualties associated to the collapse of engineered structures, a high rate compared to contemporary figures worldwide. Four years earlier, during a long precipitation period in September 1982, a debris flow was triggered from the summit of the San Salvador volcano and travelled ~4 km for about one hour before it killed up to 500 people in an area to the North-West of the Metropolitan Area of San Salvador (AMSS). This same area had been previously hit by a similar event 50 years earlier, but with no consequences at that time since it was uninhabited. These are only some examples of the main facts that motivated the creation of the Office for Urban Planning of the Metropolitan Area of San Salvador (OPAMSS) in 1990. This institution is an autonomous municipal organisation whose functions and attributes comprise the planning and control of urban development. After 20 years of the foundation of OPAMSS, this paper presents its history and evolution, the main achievements and challenges, focusing on how the institution has been shaped by some key milestones, such as the earthquake-triggered landslide at Las Colinas neighbourhood in January 2001, which killed ~600 people in the Western AMSS, and the widespread flooding in October 2005 after the urban drainage network collapsed during Hurricane Stan. The development of OPAMSS as a key organisation in land use management and decision-making is an example that illustrates how the integration of technical and legal aspects can be oriented towards the improvement of governance at the scale of metropolitan areas.

  5. Toxic and fire hazard of flooring

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Illarionova L. V.


    Full Text Available polymer materials have become widespread in the modern construction industry due to their cheapness and variety. With regard to their popularity at the present time there can appear the issues of their toxic and fire danger. The work has studied the samples of two floor synthetic building materials. The results of the determination of the fire hazard indicators of materials (combustibility, flammability, smoke ratio showed their compliance with the current certificates. The authors have studied the properties of gaseous combustion products of samples by the method of thermal analysis and FTIR analysis. The results of chloride ions analysis according the formula of Maxwell-Mohr in thermolysis products indicate the toxicity of the materials studied.

  6. Epistemic uncertainties and natural hazard risk assessment - Part 1: A review of the issues (United States)

    Beven, K. J.; Aspinall, W. P.; Bates, P. D.; Borgomeo, E.; Goda, K.; Hall, J. W.; Page, T.; Phillips, J. C.; Rougier, J. T.; Simpson, M.; Stephenson, D. B.; Smith, P. J.; Wagener, T.; Watson, M.


    Uncertainties in natural hazard risk assessment are generally dominated by the sources arising from lack of knowledge or understanding of the processes involved. There is a lack of knowledge about frequencies, process representations, parameters, present and future boundary conditions, consequences and impacts, and the meaning of observations in evaluating simulation models. These are the epistemic uncertainties that can be difficult to constrain, especially in terms of event or scenario probabilities, even as elicited probabilities rationalized on the basis of expert judgements. This paper reviews the issues raised by trying to quantify the effects of epistemic uncertainties. Such scientific uncertainties might have significant influence on decisions that are made for risk management, so it is important to communicate the meaning of an uncertainty estimate and to provide an audit trail of the assumptions on which it is based. Some suggestions for good practice in doing so are made.

  7. The price of safety: costs for mitigating and coping with Alpine hazards (United States)

    Pfurtscheller, C.; Thieken, A. H.


    Due to limited public budgets and the need to economize, the analysis of costs of hazard mitigation and emergency management of natural hazards becomes increasingly important for public natural hazard and risk management. In recent years there has been a growing body of literature on the estimation of losses which supported to help to determine benefits of measures in terms of prevented losses. On the contrary, the costs of mitigation are hardly addressed. This paper thus aims to shed some light on expenses for mitigation and emergency services. For this, we analysed the annual costs of mitigation efforts in four regions/countries of the Alpine Arc: Bavaria (Germany), Tyrol (Austria), South Tyrol (Italy) and Switzerland. On the basis of PPP values (purchasing power parities), annual expenses on public safety ranged from EUR 44 per capita in the Free State of Bavaria to EUR 216 in the Autonomous Province of South Tyrol. To analyse the (variable) costs for emergency services in case of an event, we used detailed data from the 2005 floods in the Federal State of Tyrol (Austria) as well as aggregated data from the 2002 floods in Germany. The analysis revealed that multi-hazards, the occurrence and intermixture of different natural hazard processes, contribute to increasing emergency costs. Based on these findings, research gaps and recommendations for costing Alpine natural hazards are discussed.

  8. Assessment of natural radioactivity and associated radiation hazards in some Cameroonian building materials

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ngachin, M. [Center for Atomic, Molecular Physics and Quantum Optics, University of Douala, P.O. Box 8580, Douala (Cameroon) and Abdus Salam International Center for Theoretical Physics, Strada Costiera 11, 34014 Trieste (Italy)]. E-mail:; Garavaglia, M. [Regional Agency for Environmental Protection (ARPA), 91 via Tavagnacco, 33100 Udine (Italy); Giovani, C. [Regional Agency for Environmental Protection (ARPA), 91 via Tavagnacco, 33100 Udine (Italy); Kwato Njock, M.G. [Center for Atomic, Molecular Physics and Quantum Optics, University of Douala, P.O. Box 8580, Douala (Cameroon); Nourreddine, A. [Institut Pluridisciplinaire Hubert Curien, UMR7500 CNRS-IN2P3 et Universite Louis Pasteur, 23 Rue du Loess, BP 28, F-67037, Strasbourg Cedex 2 (France)


    The concentration of {sup 238}U, {sup 232}Th and {sup 40}K in 13 building materials obtained from factories and collected in field in Cameroon were investigated by {gamma}-ray spectrometry. The activity ranged from 1.76 to 49.84Bqkg{sup -1}, 0.32 to 147Bqkg{sup -1} and 18 to 1226Bqkg{sup -1} for {sup 238}U, {sup 232}Th and {sup 40}K, respectively. The highest {sup 238}U activity was found in compressed red soil brick type I (49.6+/-0.3Bqkg{sup -1}) produced by a local manufacturer while the highest {sup 232}Th (139+/-13Bqkg{sup -1}) and {sup 40}K (1162+/-108Bqkg{sup -1}) activities were found in gravel collected from an exploitation site in Logbadjeck. The activities are compared with available data from other investigations and with the world average value for soils. The radium equivalent activity Ra{sub eq}, the external hazard index H{sub ex}, the indoor absorbed dose rate D-bar in air and the annual effective dose equivalent E-bar were evaluated to assess the radiation hazard for people living in dwellings made of the materials studied. All building materials have shown Ra{sub eq} (range from 10 to 313Bqkg{sup -1}) lower than the limit of 370Bqkg{sup -1} set in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development [OECD, 1979. Exposure to radiation from the natural radioactivity in building materials. OECD, Paris] report which is equivalent to a {gamma}-dose of 1.5mSvyr{sup -1}. Except for the gravel from Logbadjeck, all the materials examined are acceptable for use as building materials as defined by the OECD criterion.

  9. Communicating natural hazards. The case of marine extreme events and the importance of the forecast's errors. (United States)

    Marone, Eduardo; Camargo, Ricardo


    Scientific knowledge has to fulfill some necessary conditions. Among them, it has to be properly communicated. Usually, scientists (mis)understand that the communication requirement is satisfied by publishing their results on peer reviewed journals. Society claims for information in other formats or languages and other tools and approaches have to be used, otherwise the scientific discoveries will not fulfill its social mean. However, scientists are not so well trained to do so. These facts are particularly relevant when the scientific work has to deal with natural hazards, which do not affect just a lab or a computer experiment, but the life and fate of human beings. We are actually working with marine extreme events related with sea level changes, waves and other coastal hazards. Primary, the work is developed on the classic scientific format, but focusing not only in the stochastic way of predicting such extreme events, but estimating the potential errors the forecasting methodologies intrinsically have. The scientific results are translated to a friendly format required by stakeholders (which are financing part of the work). Finally, we hope to produce a document prepared for the general public. Each of the targets has their own characteristics and we have to use the proper communication tools and languages. Also, when communicating such knowledge, we have to consider that stakeholders and general public have no obligation of understanding the scientific language, but scientists have the responsibility of translating their discoveries and predictions in a proper way. The information on coastal hazards is analyzed in statistical and numerical ways, departing from long term observation of, for instance, sea level. From the analysis it is possible to recognize different natural regimes and to present the return times of extreme events, while from the numerical models, properly tuned to reproduce the same past ocean behavior using hindcast approaches, it is

  10. New Multi-HAzard and MulTi-RIsk Assessment MethodS for Europe (MATRIX): A research program towards mitigating multiple hazards and risks in Europe (United States)

    Fleming, K. M.; Zschau, J.; Gasparini, P.; Modaressi, H.; Matrix Consortium


    Scientists, engineers, civil protection and disaster managers typically treat natural hazards and risks individually. This leads to the situation where the frequent causal relationships between the different hazards and risks, e.g., earthquakes and volcanos, or floods and landslides, are ignored. Such an oversight may potentially lead to inefficient mitigation planning. As part of their efforts to confront this issue, the European Union, under its FP7 program, is supporting the New Multi-HAzard and MulTi-RIsK Assessment MethodS for Europe or MATRIX project. The focus of MATRIX is on natural hazards, in particular earthquakes, landslides, volcanos, wild fires, storms and fluvial and coastal flooding. MATRIX will endeavour to develop methods and tools to tackle multi-type natural hazards and risks within a common framework, focusing on methodologies that are suited to the European context. The work will involve an assessment of current single-type hazard and risk assessment methodologies, including a comparison and quantification of uncertainties and harmonization of single-type methods, examining the consequence of cascade effects within a multi-hazard environment, time-dependent vulnerability, decision making and support for multi-hazard mitigation and adaption, and a series of test cases. Three test sites are being used to assess the methods developed within the project (Naples, Cologne, and the French West Indies), as well as a "virtual city" based on a comprehensive IT platform that will allow scenarios not represented by the test cases to be examined. In addition, a comprehensive dissemination program that will involve national platforms for disaster management, as well as various outreach activities, will be undertaken. The MATRIX consortium consists of ten research institutions (nine European and one Canadian), an end-user (i.e., one of the European national platforms for disaster reduction) and a partner from industry.

  11. Elevation uncertainty in coastal inundation hazard assessments (United States)

    Gesch, Dean B.; Cheval, Sorin


    Coastal inundation has been identified as an important natural hazard that affects densely populated and built-up areas (Subcommittee on Disaster Reduction, 2008). Inundation, or coastal flooding, can result from various physical processes, including storm surges, tsunamis, intense precipitation events, and extreme high tides. Such events cause quickly rising water levels. When rapidly rising water levels overwhelm flood defenses, especially in heavily populated areas, the potential of the hazard is realized and a natural disaster results. Two noteworthy recent examples of such natural disasters resulting from coastal inundation are the Hurricane Katrina storm surge in 2005 along the Gulf of Mexico coast in the United States, and the tsunami in northern Japan in 2011. Longer term, slowly varying processes such as land subsidence (Committee on Floodplain Mapping Technologies, 2007) and sea-level rise also can result in coastal inundation, although such conditions do not have the rapid water level rise associated with other flooding events. Geospatial data are a critical resource for conducting assessments of the potential impacts of coastal inundation, and geospatial representations of the topography in the form of elevation measurements are a primary source of information for identifying the natural and human components of the landscape that are at risk. Recently, the quantity and quality of elevation data available for the coastal zone have increased markedly, and this availability facilitates more detailed and comprehensive hazard impact assessments.

  12. Moral Hazard in Pediatrics. (United States)

    Brunnquell, Donald; Michaelson, Christopher M


    "Moral hazard" is a term familiar in economics and business ethics that illuminates why rational parties sometimes choose decisions with bad moral outcomes without necessarily intending to behave selfishly or immorally. The term is not generally used in medical ethics. Decision makers such as parents and physicians generally do not use the concept or the word in evaluating ethical dilemmas. They may not even be aware of the precise nature of the moral hazard problem they are experiencing, beyond a general concern for the patient's seemingly excessive burden. This article brings the language and logic of moral hazard to pediatrics. The concept reminds us that decision makers in this context are often not the primary party affected by their decisions. It appraises the full scope of risk at issue when decision makers decide on behalf of others and leads us to separate, respect, and prioritize the interests of affected parties.

  13. Snow avalanche hazards and mitigation in the United States

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Committee on Ground Failure Hazards Mitigation Research; Commission on Engineering and Technical Systems; Division on Engineering and Physical Sciences; National Research Council; Bloom, Floyd E


    ... Failure Hazards Mitigation Research Division of Natural Hazard Mitigation Commission on Engineering and Technical Systems National Research Council NATIONAL ACADEMY PRESS Washington, D.C.1990 i Copyrighttrue Please breaks inserted. are Page files. accidentally typesetting been have may original from the errors not typographic original ...

  14. Multi-hazard Assessment and Scenario Toolbox (MhAST): A Framework for Analyzing Compounding Effects of Multiple Hazards (United States)

    Sadegh, M.; Moftakhari, H.; AghaKouchak, A.


    Many natural hazards are driven by multiple forcing variables, and concurrence/consecutive extreme events significantly increases risk of infrastructure/system failure. It is a common practice to use univariate analysis based upon a perceived ruling driver to estimate design quantiles and/or return periods of extreme events. A multivariate analysis, however, permits modeling simultaneous occurrence of multiple forcing variables. In this presentation, we introduce the Multi-hazard Assessment and Scenario Toolbox (MhAST) that comprehensively analyzes marginal and joint probability distributions of natural hazards. MhAST also offers a wide range of scenarios of return period and design levels and their likelihoods. Contribution of this study is four-fold: 1. comprehensive analysis of marginal and joint probability of multiple drivers through 17 continuous distributions and 26 copulas, 2. multiple scenario analysis of concurrent extremes based upon the most likely joint occurrence, one ruling variable, and weighted random sampling of joint occurrences with similar exceedance probabilities, 3. weighted average scenario analysis based on a expected event, and 4. uncertainty analysis of the most likely joint occurrence scenario using a Bayesian framework.

  15. The 5 key questions coping with risks due to natural hazards, answered by a case study (United States)

    Hardegger, P.; Sausgruber, J. T.; Schiegg, H. O.


    Based on Maslow's hierarchy of needs, human endeavours concern primarily existential needs, consequently, to be safeguarded against both natural as well as man made threads. The subsequent needs are to realize chances in a variety of fields, as economics and many others. Independently, the 5 crucial questions are the same as for coping with risks due to natural hazards specifically. These 5 key questions are I) What is the impact in function of space and time ? II) What protection measures comply with the general opinion and how much do they mitigate the threat? III) How can the loss be adequately quantified and monetized ? IV) What budget for prevention and reserves for restoration and compensation are to be planned ? V) Which mix of measures and allocation of resources is sustainable, thus, optimal ? The 5 answers, exemplified by a case study, concerning the sustainable management of risk due to the debris flows by the Enterbach / Inzing / Tirol / Austria, are as follows : I) The impact, created by both the propagation of flooding and sedimentation, has been forecasted by modeling (numerical simulation) the 30, 50, 100, 150, 300 and 1000 year debris flow. The input was specified by detailed studies in meteorology, precipitation and runoff, in geology, hydrogeology, geomorphology and slope stability, in hydraulics, sediment transport and debris flow, in forestry, agriculture and development of communal settlement and infrastructure. All investigations were performed according to the method of ETAlp (Erosion and Transport in Alpine systems). ETAlp has been developed in order to achieve a sustainable development in alpine areas and has been evaluated by the research project "nab", within the context of the EU-Interreg IIIb projects. II) The risk mitigation measures of concern are in hydraulics at the one hand and in forestry at the other hand. Such risk management is evaluated according to sustainability, which means economic, ecologic and social, in short, "triple

  16. Landslides Hazard Assessment Using Different Approaches

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Coman Cristina


    Full Text Available Romania represents one of Europe’s countries with high landslides occurrence frequency. Landslide hazard maps are designed by considering the interaction of several factors which, by their joint action may affect the equilibrium state of the natural slopes. The aim of this paper is landslides hazard assessment using the methodology provided by the Romanian national legislation and a very largely used statistical method. The final results of these two analyses are quantitative or semi-quantitative landslides hazard maps, created in geographic information system environment. The data base used for this purpose includes: geological and hydrogeological data, digital terrain model, hydrological data, land use, seismic action, anthropic action and an inventory of active landslides. The GIS landslides hazard models were built for the geographical area of the Iasi city, located in the north-east side of Romania.

  17. The Optimizer Topology Characteristics in Seismic Hazards (United States)

    Sengor, T.


    The characteristic data of the natural phenomena are questioned in a topological space approach to illuminate whether there is an algorithm behind them bringing the situation of physics of phenomena to optimized states even if they are hazards. The optimized code designing the hazard on a topological structure mashes the metric of the phenomena. The deviations in the metric of different phenomena push and/or pull the fold of the other suitable phenomena. For example if the metric of a specific phenomenon A fits to the metric of another specific phenomenon B after variation processes generated with the deviation of the metric of previous phenomenon A. Defining manifold processes covering the metric characteristics of each of every phenomenon is possible for all the physical events; i.e., natural hazards. There are suitable folds in those manifold groups so that each subfold fits to the metric characteristics of one of the natural hazard category at least. Some variation algorithms on those metric structures prepare a gauge effect bringing the long time stability of Earth for largely scaled periods. The realization of that stability depends on some specific conditions. These specific conditions are called optimized codes. The analytical basics of processes in topological structures are developed in [1]. The codes are generated according to the structures in [2]. Some optimized codes are derived related to the seismicity of NAF beginning from the quakes of the year 1999. References1. Taner SENGOR, "Topological theory and analytical configuration for a universal community model," Procedia- Social and Behavioral Sciences, Vol. 81, pp. 188-194, 28 June 2013, 2. Taner SENGOR, "Seismic-Climatic-Hazardous Events Estimation Processes via the Coupling Structures in Conserving Energy Topologies of the Earth," The 2014 AGU Fall Meeting, Abstract no.: 31374, ABD.

  18. A method to analyze territory resilience to natural hazards, the example of the French Riviera against tsunami (United States)

    Boschetti, Laurie; Provitolo, Damienne; Tric, Emmanuel


    Climate change and major crisis have been increasing during the 21st century, which have impacted people and helped them to realize that they had to protect themselves against it. That is why scientists, practitioners and institutions are more and more exploring resilience concept and methodology (Dauphiné, Provitolo, 2013). Resilience came at first from material physics, and is now developed in different disciplines, like psychology, ecology, economy, more recently geography, and more specifically natural risk analysis. The downside of this multidisciplinary interest is that this concept became a polysemous concept, resulting on the difficulty, for the scientific community, to agree about a single definition to characterize it (Reghezza et al. 2015). Our presentation will propose a resilience analysis model of a territory subject to naturel hazard, after which, this methodology will be demonstrating to a specific territory, the French Riviera, more precisely the Alpes-Maritimes. We choose, as natural hazard to realize our study, the tsunami which could impact the Alpes-Maritimes coast. This choice has been done for many reasons: - This natural hazard is almost not included in the different studies and french official documents, whereas the risk is real in Mediterranean. Two significant events had happened in our study area: the first one in 1887, following the Ligurian earthquake (Ioualalen et al. 2010); the second one in 1979, off Nice airport, produced by a submarine landslide (Migeon, 2011b). Those events present a crucial particularity, being near the source, the arrival time is quiet short, making any planed escape impossible. We can describe them as flash risks. - The study area, containing coastal cities of the Alpes-Maritimes, presents many key issues, humans and economics. - This region has a specific geography, including a territory which has been developed between sea and mountains, a high density in the coast, and an anisotropy of the networks

  19. Climate change beliefs and hazard mitigation behaviors: Homeowners and wildfire risk (United States)

    Hannah Brenkert-Smith; James R. Meldrum; Patricia A. Champ


    Downscaled climate models provide projections of how climate change may exacerbate the local impacts of natural hazards. The extent to which people facing exacerbated hazard conditions understand or respond to climate-related changes to local hazards has been largely overlooked. In this article, we examine the relationships among climate change beliefs, environmental...

  20. How Can Museum Exhibits Enhance Earthquake and Tsunami Hazard Resiliency? (United States)

    Olds, S. E.


    Creating a natural disaster-ready community requires interoperating scientific, technical, and social systems. In addition to the technical elements that need to be in place, communities and individuals need to be prepared to react when a natural hazard event occurs. Natural hazard awareness and preparedness training and education often takes place through informal learning at science centers and formal k-12 education programs as well as through awareness raising via strategically placed informational tsunami warning signs and placards. Museums and science centers are influential in raising science literacy within a community, however can science centers enhance earthquake and tsunami resiliency by providing hazard science content and preparedness exhibits? Museum docents and informal educators are uniquely situated within the community. They are transmitters and translators of science information to broad audiences. Through interaction with the public, docents are well positioned to be informants of the knowledge beliefs, and feelings of science center visitors. They themselves are life-long learners, both constantly learning from the museum content around them and sharing this content with visitors. They are also members of a community where they live. In-depth interviews with museum informal educators and docents were conducted at a science center in coastal Pacific Northwest. This region has a potential to be struck by a great 9+ Mw earthquake and subsequent tsunami. During the interviews, docents described how they applied learning from natural hazard exhibits at a science visitor center to their daily lives. During the individual interviews, the museum docents described their awareness (knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors) of natural hazards where they live and work, the feelings evoked as they learned about their hazard vulnerability, the extent to which they applied this learning and awareness to their lives, such as creating an evacuation plan, whether

  1. The Australian Natural Disaster Resilience Index (United States)

    Thoms, Martin


    The Australian Natural Disaster Resilience Index Martin Thoms, Melissa Parsons, Phil Morley Bushfire and Natural Hazards Cooperative Research Centre, Geography and Planning, University of New England, Armidale NSW 2351, Australia. Natural hazard management policy directions in Australia - and indeed internationally - are increasingly being aligned to ideas of resilience. Resilience to natural hazards is the ability of individuals and communities to cope with disturbance and adversity and to maintain adaptive behaviour. Operationalizing the measurement and assessment of disaster resilience is often undertaken using a composite index, but this exercise is yet to be undertaken in Australia. The Australian Natural Disaster Resilience Index is a top-down, national scale assessment of the resilience of communities to natural hazards. Resilience is assessed based on two sets of capacities: coping and adaptive capacities. Coping capacity relates to the factors influencing the ability of a community to prepare for, absorb and recover from a natural hazard event. Adaptive capacity relates to the arrangements and processes that enable adjustment through learning, adaptation and transformation. Indicators are derived under themes of social character, economic capital, infrastructure and planning, emergency services, community capital, information and engagement and governance/leadership/policy, using existing data sets (e.g. census data) or evaluation of policy and procedure (e.g. disaster management planning). A composite index of disaster resilience is then computed for each spatial division, giving national scale coverage. The results of the Australian Natural Disaster Resilience Index will be reported in a State of Disaster Resilience report, due in 2018. The index is co-designed with emergency service agencies, and will support policy development, planning, community engagement and emergency management.

  2. Fertility and Occupational hazards: Review of the Literature | Ashiru ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Workplace exposures and hazards have detrimental effects on many organ systems in the body including the reproductive system. The evidence of the reproductive effects of occupational hazards is obtained through a synthesis of the available literature. These effects vary and overlap due to the multiple nature of ...

  3. Industrial ecology: Environmental chemistry and hazardous waste

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Manahan, S.E. [Univ. of Missouri, Columbia, MO (United States). Dept. of Chemistry


    Industrial ecology may be a relatively new concept -- yet it`s already proven instrumental for solving a wide variety of problems involving pollution and hazardous waste, especially where available material resources have been limited. By treating industrial systems in a manner that parallels ecological systems in nature, industrial ecology provides a substantial addition to the technologies of environmental chemistry. Stanley E. Manahan, bestselling author of many environmental chemistry books for Lewis Publishers, now examines Industrial Ecology: Environmental Chemistry and Hazardous Waste. His study of this innovative technology uses an overall framework of industrial ecology to cover hazardous wastes from an environmental chemistry perspective. Chapters one to seven focus on how industrial ecology relates to environmental science and technology, with consideration of the anthrosphere as one of five major environmental spheres. Subsequent chapters deal specifically with hazardous substances and hazardous waste, as they relate to industrial ecology and environmental chemistry.

  4. Natural hazards and risk reduction in Hawai'i: Chapter 10 in Characteristics of Hawaiian volcanoes (United States)

    Kauahikaua, James P.; Tilling, Robert I.; Poland, Michael P.; Takahashi, T. Jane; Landowski, Claire M.


    Significant progress has been made over the past century in understanding, characterizing, and communicating the societal risks posed by volcanic, earthquake, and tsunami hazards in Hawai‘i. The work of the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO), with a century-long commitment to serving the public with credible hazards information, contributed substantially to this global progress. Thomas A. Jaggar, Jr., HVO’s founder, advocated that a scientific approach to understanding these hazards would result in strategies to mitigate their damaging effects. The resultant hazard-reduction methods range from prediction of eruptions and tsunamis, thereby providing early warnings for timely evacuation (if needed), to diversion of lava flows away from high-value infrastructure, such as hospitals. In addition to long-term volcano monitoring and multifaceted studies to better understand eruptive and seismic phenomena, HVO has continually and effectively communicated—through its publications, Web site, and public education/outreach programs—hazards information to emergency-management authorities, news media, and the public.

  5. Studies for the requirements of automatic and remotely controlled shutoff valves on hazardous liquids and natural gas pipelines with respect to public and environmental safety

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oland, C. Barry [XCEL Engineering, Inc. (United States); Rose, Simon D. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States). Engineering Science and Technology Div.; Grant, Herb L. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States). Fabrication, Hoisting and Rigging Div.; Lower, Mark D. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States). Fabrication, Hoisting and Rigging Div.; Spann, Mark A. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States). Facility Management Div.; Kirkpatrick, John R. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States). Computational Sciences and Engineering Div.; Sulfredge, C. David [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States). Computational Sciences and Engineering Div.


    This study assesses the effectiveness of block valve closure swiftness in mitigating the consequences of natural gas and hazardous liquid pipeline releases on public and environmental safety. It also evaluates the technical, operational, and economic feasibility and potential cost benefits of installing automatic shutoff valves (ASVs) and remote control valves (RCVs) in newly constructed and fully replaced transmission lines. Risk analyses of hypothetical pipeline release scenarios are used as the basis for assessing: (1) fire damage to buildings and property in Class 1, Class 2, Class 3, and Class 4 high consequence areas (HCAs) caused by natural gas pipeline releases and subsequent ignition of the released natural gas; (2) fire damage to buildings and property in HCAs designated as high population areas and other populated areas caused by hazardous liquid pipeline releases and subsequent ignition of the released propane; and (3) socioeconomic and environmental damage in HCAs caused by hazardous liquid pipeline releases of crude oil. These risk analyses use engineering principles and fire science practices to characterize thermal radiation effects on buildings and humans and to quantify the total damage cost of socioeconomic and environmental impacts. The risk analysis approach used for natural gas pipelines is consistent with risk assessment standards developed by industry and incorporated into Federal pipeline safety regulations. Feasibility evaluations for the hypothetical pipeline release scenarios considered in this study show that installation of ASVs and RCVs in newly constructed and fully replaced natural gas and hazardous liquid pipelines is technically, operationally, and economically feasible with a positive cost benefit. However, these results may not apply to all newly constructed and fully replaced pipelines because site-specific parameters that influence risk analyses and feasibility evaluations often vary significantly from one pipeline segment to

  6. Coastal Hazards Impacts And Interventions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rosanna D. Gonzales


    Full Text Available Communitys participation in the activities like the preparation and creation of historical timeline. resource and hazard mapping as well as vulnerability assessment matrix VAM are effective tools in determining hazards impacts and interventions of a certain locality. The most common hazards are typhoons saltwater intrusion floods and drought. Data were collected through focus group discussions FGDs from respondents along coastal areas. Findings revealed that natural calamities had great impact to livelihood properties and health. The damaged business operations fishing and agricultural livelihood led to loss of income likewise the sources of water were also contaminated. Planned interventions include launching of periodic education and awareness program creation of evacuation centers and relocation sites rescue centers installation of deep well water pumps and irrigation systems solid waste management drainage and sea walls construction canal rehabilitationdredging tree planting and alternative livelihood programs.

  7. Geologic hazards in the region of the Hurricane fault (United States)

    Lund, W.R.


    Complex geology and variable topography along the 250-kilometer-long Hurricane fault in northwestern Arizona and southwestern Utah combine to create natural conditions that can present a potential danger to life and property. Geologic hazards are of particular concern in southwestern Utah, where the St. George Basin and Interstate-15 corridor north to Cedar City are one of Utah's fastest growing areas. Lying directly west of the Hurricane fault and within the Basin and Range - Colorado Plateau transition zone, this region exhibits geologic characteristics of both physiographic provinces. Long, potentially active, normal-slip faults displace a generally continuous stratigraphic section of mostly east-dipping late Paleozoic to Cretaceous sedimentary rocks unconformably overlain by Tertiary to Holocene sedimentary and igneous rocks and unconsolidated basin-fill deposits. Geologic hazards (exclusive of earthquake hazards) of principal concern in the region include problem soil and rock, landslides, shallow ground water, and flooding. Geologic materials susceptible to volumetric change, collapse, and subsidence in southwestern Utah include; expansive soil and rock, collapse-prone soil, gypsum and gypsiferous soil, soluble carbonate rocks, and soil and rock subject to piping and other ground collapse. Expansive soil and rock are widespread throughout the region. The Petrified Forest Member of the Chinle Formation is especially prone to large volume changes with variations in moisture content. Collapse-prone soils are common in areas of Cedar City underlain by alluvial-fan material derived from the Moenkopi and Chinle Formations in the nearby Hurricane Cliffs. Gypsiferous soil and rock are subject to dissolution which can damage foundations and create sinkholes. The principal formations in the region affected by dissolution of carbonate are the Kaibab and Toroweap Formations; both formations have developed sinkholes where crossed by perennial streams. Soil piping is

  8. Natural Hazards of the Space Environment (United States)

    Evans, Steven W.; Kross, Dennis A. (Technical Monitor)


    Spacecraft in Low Earth Orbit (LEO) are subject to numerous environmental hazards. Here I'll briefly discuss three environment factors that pose acute threats to the survival of spacecraft systems and crew: atmospheric drag, impacts by meteoroids and orbital debris, and ionizing radiation. Atmospheric drag continuously opposes the orbital motion of a satellite, causing the orbit to decay. This decay will lead to reentry if not countered by reboost maneuvers. Orbital debris is a by-product of man's activities in space, and consists of objects ranging in size from miniscule paint chips to spent rocket stages and dead satellites. Ionizing radiation experienced in LEO has several components: geomagnetically trapped protons and electrons (Van Allen belts); energetic solar particles; galactic cosmic rays; and albedo neutrons. These particles can have several types of prompt harmful effects on equipment and crew, from single-event upsets, latchup, and burnout of electronics, to lethal doses to crew.All three types of prompt threat show some dependence on the solar activity cycle. Atmospheric drag mitigation and large debris avoidance require propulsive maneuvers. M/OD and ionizing radiation require some form of shielding for crew and sensitive equipment. Limiting exposure time is a mitigation technique for ionizing radiation and meteor streams.

  9. Radiotoxic hazard measure for buried solid radioactive waste

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hamstra, J.


    The radiotoxic hazards resulting from the disposal of highlevel reprocessing wastes into a deep geological formation are reviewed. The term radiotoxic hazard measure (RHM), used to measure the hazard from buried radioactive wastes, is based on the maximum radionuclide concentration permissible in water. Calculations are made of the RHM levels for the high-level reprocessing wastes of both light-water-reactor and fast breeder reactor fuels. In comparing these RHM levels with that for the natural activity of an equivalent amount of uranium ore and its mill tailings, it is concluded that an actual additional radiotoxic hazard for buried high-level reprocessing waste only exists for the first 300 to 500 years after burial. (U.S.)

  10. Natural-technological risk assessment and management (United States)

    Burova, Valentina; Frolova, Nina


    EM-DAT statistical data on human impact and economic damages in the 1st semester 2015 are the highest since 2011: 41% of disasters were floods, responsible for 39% of economic damage and 7% of events were earthquakes responsible for 59% of total death toll. This suggests that disaster risk assessment and management still need to be improved and stay the principle issue in national and international related programs. The paper investigates the risk assessment and management practice in the Russian Federation at different levels. The method is proposed to identify the territories characterized by integrated natural-technological hazard. The maps of the Russian Federation zoning according to the integrated natural-technological hazard level are presented, as well as the procedure of updating the integrated hazard level taking into account the activity of separate processes. Special attention is paid to data bases on past natural and technological processes consequences, which are used for verification of current hazard estimation. The examples of natural-technological risk zoning for the country and some regions territory are presented. Different output risk indexes: both social and economic, are estimated taking into account requirements of end-users. In order to increase the safety of population of the Russian Federation the trans-boundaries hazards are also taken into account.

  11. Hazard assessment for Romania–Bulgaria crossborder region

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Solakov, Dimcho; Simeonova, Stela; Alexandrova, Irena; Trifonova, Petya; Ardeleanu, Luminita; Cioflan, Carmen


    Among the many kinds of natural and man-made disasters, earthquakes dominate with regard to their social and economical impact on the urban environment. Global seismic hazard and vulnerability to earthquakes are steadily increasing as urbanisation and development occupy more areas that are prone to effects of strong earthquakes. The assessment of the seismic hazard is particularly important, because it provides valuable information for seismic safety and disaster mitigation, and it supports decision making for the benefit of society. The main objective of this study is to assess the seismic hazard for Romania-Bulgaria cross-border region on the basis of integrated basic geo-datasets

  12. The Global Seismic Hazard Assessment Program (GSHAP - 1992/1999

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Giardini


    Full Text Available The United Nations, recognizing natural disasters as a major threat to human life and development, designed the 1990-1999 period as the International Decade for Natural Disaster Reduction (UN/IDNDR; UN Res. 42/169/ 1987. Among the IDNDR Demonstration Projects is the Global Seismic Hazard Assessment Program (GSHAP, launched in 1992 by the International Lithosphere Program (ILP and implemented in the 1992-1999 period. In order to mitigate the risk associated to the recurrence of earthquakes, the GSHAP promoted a regionally coordinated, homogeneous approach to seismic hazard evaluation. To achieve a global dimension, the GSHAP established initially a mosaic of regions and multinational test areas, then expanded to cover whole continents and finally the globe. The GSHAP Global Map of Seismic Hazard integrates the results obtained in the regional areas and depicts Peak-Ground-Acceleration (PGA with 10% chance of exceedance in 50 years, corresponding to a return period of 475 years. All regional results and the Global Map of Seismic Hazard are published in 1999 and available on the GSHAP homepage on

  13. Hazardous substances in Europe's fresh and marine waters

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Collins, Robert; Brack, Werner; Lützhøft, Hans-Christian Holten

    Chemicals are an essential part of our daily lives. They are used to produce consumer goods, to protect or restore our health and to boost food production, to name but a few examples — and they are also involved in a growing range of environmental technologies. Europe's chemical and associated...... on their pattern of use and the potential for exposure. Certain types of naturally occurring chemicals, such as metals, can also be hazardous. Emissions of hazardous substances to the environment can occur at every stage of their life cycle, from production, processing, manufacturing and use in downstream...... regarding chemical contamination arising from the exploitation of shale gas has grown recently. Hazardous substances in water affect aquatic life… Hazardous substances are emitted to water bodies both directly and indirectly through a range of diffuse and point source pathways. The presence of hazardous...

  14. Historical and Paleo Events as an input for Seismic And Associated Natural Hazard Assessment of Javakheti highland (South Georgia) (United States)

    Elashvili, M.; Javakhishvili, Z.; Godoladze, T.; Karakhanyan, A.; Sukhishvili, L.; Nikolaeva, E.; Sokhadze, G.; Avanesyan, M.


    Current study concerns Javakheti area in the Lesser Caucasus. This area comprises a volcanic plateau with more than 20 volcanoes, several of them dated as having erupted during the Holocene. In the region the upper part of Lava complex is represented by Middle-Upper Quaternary formations. The region is an area of young deformations in the Alpine belt. Formation of relief began at the neotectonic stage (Sarmatian) and continues at present. Javakheti is one of the most seismically active regions in the Caucasus, earthquakes of 1899 and 1986 with magnitudes up to 6.0, causing severe damage and hundreds of casualties, occurred there. Historical data on earthquakes in 1088 and 1899 locate them in the same region, highlighting the importance on learning about the location and characteristics of their seismic sources. Javakheti highland seems to be actively populated at least from the Bronze Age period, forming a local culture to be strongly affected by Natural catastrophes and significant changes in Landscapes and climate. Study of potential seismic and associated natural hazards, such as landslide and rockfalls, possible volcanic activity in the region, including paleo and historical evidences, were addressed by number of International Projects (ISTC A-1418, NATO SFP # 983284 ) and multidisciplinary studies carried out by the Institute of Earth Sciences. Data gathered after the Installation of local GPS and Seismic networks have provided new look on seismicity pattern of the region and major seismic sources, while field studies (Geophysical survey, Paleo trenching, Archaeological studies, etc.) have provided new information on the dramatic Natural disasters which occurred in the region and probably played a vital role in its history. Remote sensing techniques became widely used in geological investigations during the decades. Interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR), aerial and optical data analysis have contributed to the development of this work.. Case studies

  15. Development of District-Based Mineral-Hazards Maps for Highways in California (United States)

    Higgins, C. T.; Churchill, R. K.; Fonseca, M. C.


    The California Geological Survey (CGS) currently is developing a series of unpublished maps for the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) that shows potential for mineral hazards within each of the twelve highway districts administered by that agency. Where present along or near highway corridors, such hazards may pose problems for human health and safety or the environment. Prepared at a scale of 1:250,000, the maps are designed as initial screening tools for Caltrans staff to use to improve planning of activities that involve new construction projects, routine maintenance of highways, and emergency removal of debris deposited on roads by natural processes. Although the basic presentation of each type of thematic map in the series is the same, some customization and focus are allowed for each district because each has unique issues concerning potential for mineral hazards. The maps display many natural and man-made features that may be potential sources of mineral hazards within each district. Features compiled and evaluated under our definition of "mineral hazards" are: 1) naturally-occurring asbestos (NOA); 2) natural occurrences of various regulated metals (Ag, Ba, Be, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Hg, Mo, Ni, Pb, Tl, V, Zn) and metalloids (As, Sb, Se) as well as other pertinent metals, such as Mn and U; 3) faults, which can be sites of increased potential for certain types of mineralization, such as NOA; 4) mines and prospects, which can be sources of anomalous concentrations of metals as well as ore-processing chemicals; 5) natural petroleum features, such as oil and natural-gas seeps; 6) natural geothermal features, such as thermal springs and fumaroles; and 7) oil, natural-gas, and geothermal wells. Because of their greater potential as sources of mineral hazards, localities designated on the maps as "areas of potential mineralogical concern" are of particular interest to Caltrans. Examples include significant mining districts, such as New Almaden (Hg) near

  16. Lessons learned from external hazards

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Peinador, Miguel; Zerger, Benoit [European Commisison Joint Research Centre, Petten (Netherlands). Inst. for Energy and Transport; Ramos, Manuel Martin [European Commission Joint Research Centre, Brussels (Belgium). Nuclear Safety and Security Coordination; Wattrelos, Didier [Institut de Radioprotection et de Surete Nucleaire (IRSN), Fontenay-aux-Roses (France); Maqua, Michael [Gesellschaft fuer Anlagen- und Reaktorsicherheit (GRS) mbH, Koeln (Germany)


    This paper presents a study performed by the European Clearinghouse of the Joint Research Centre on Operational Experience for nuclear power plants in cooperation with IRSN and GRS covering events reported by nuclear power plants in relation to external hazards. It summarizes the review of 235 event reports from 3 different databases. The events were grouped in 9 categories according to the nature of the external hazard involved, and the specific lessons learned and recommendations that can be derived from each of these categories are presented. Additional 'cross-cutting' recommendations covering several or all the external hazards considered are also discussed. These recommendations can be useful in preventing this type of events from happening again or in limiting their consequences. The study was launched in 2010 and therefore it does not cover the Fukushima event. This paper presents the main findings and recommendations raised by this study. (orig.)

  17. Environmental Hazards and Mud Volcanoes in Romania (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Romania, an eastern European country, is severely affected by a variety of natural hazards. These include frequent earthquakes, floods, landslides, soil erosion, and...

  18. Assessment of volcanic hazards, vulnerability, risk and uncertainty (Invited) (United States)

    Sparks, R. S.


    A volcanic hazard is any phenomenon that threatens communities . These hazards include volcanic events like pyroclastic flows, explosions, ash fall and lavas, and secondary effects such as lahars and landslides. Volcanic hazards are described by the physical characteristics of the phenomena, by the assessment of the areas that they are likely to affect and by the magnitude-dependent return period of events. Volcanic hazard maps are generated by mapping past volcanic events and by modelling the hazardous processes. Both these methods have their strengths and limitations and a robust map should use both approaches in combination. Past records, studied through stratigraphy, the distribution of deposits and age dating, are typically incomplete and may be biased. Very significant volcanic hazards, such as surge clouds and volcanic blasts, are not well-preserved in the geological record for example. Models of volcanic processes are very useful to help identify hazardous areas that do not have any geological evidence. They are, however, limited by simplifications and incomplete understanding of the physics. Many practical volcanic hazards mapping tools are also very empirical. Hazards maps are typically abstracted into hazards zones maps, which are some times called threat or risk maps. Their aim is to identify areas at high levels of threat and the boundaries between zones may take account of other factors such as roads, escape routes during evacuation, infrastructure. These boundaries may change with time due to new knowledge on the hazards or changes in volcanic activity levels. Alternatively they may remain static but implications of the zones may change as volcanic activity changes. Zone maps are used for planning purposes and for management of volcanic crises. Volcanic hazards maps are depictions of the likelihood of future volcanic phenomena affecting places and people. Volcanic phenomena are naturally variable, often complex and not fully understood. There are

  19. Prevention of Major Accident Hazards (MAHs) in major Hazard Installation (MHI) premises via land use planning (LUP): a review (United States)

    Khudbiddin, M. Q.; Rashid, Z. A.; Yeong, A. F. M. S.; Alias, A. B.; Irfan, M. F.; Fuad, M.; Hayati, H.


    For a number of years, there is a concern about the causes of major hazards, their identification, risk assessment and the process of its management from the global perspective on the activities of the industries due to the protection of the environment, human and property. Though, industries cannot take pleasure in their business by harming the nature of the land, there are a number of measures that need to be put into consideration by the industries. Such measures are in terms of management and safety for the businesses, lives, properties, as well as the environment. The lack of consideration in the selected appropriate criteria can result in major accidental hazards (MAHs). This paper will review the land use planning (LUP) methods used in the past and present to prevent major accident hazards at major hazard installation (MHI).

  20. Online-data Bases On Natural-hazard Research, Early-warning Systems and Operative Disaster Prevention Programs (United States)

    Hermanns, R. L.; Zentel, K.-O.; Wenzel, F.; Hövel, M.; Hesse, A.

    In order to benefit from synergies and to avoid replication in the field of disaster re- duction programs and related scientific projects it is important to create an overview on the state of art, the fields of activity and their key aspects. Therefore, the German Committee for Disaster Reduction intends to document projects and institution related to natural disaster prevention in three databases. One database is designed to docu- ment scientific programs and projects related to natural hazards. In a first step data acquisition concentrated on projects carried out by German institutions. In a second step projects from all other European countries will be archived. The second database focuses on projects on early-warning systems and has no regional limit. Data mining started in November 2001 and will be finished soon. The third database documents op- erational projects dealing with disaster prevention and concentrates on international projects or internationally funded projects. These databases will be available on the internet end of spring 2002 ( and will be updated continuously. They will allow rapid and concise information on various international projects, pro- vide up-to-date descriptions, and facilitate exchange as all relevant information in- cluding contact addresses are available to the public. The aim of this contribution is to present concepts and the work done so far, to invite participation, and to contact other organizations with similar objectives.

  1. Communicating Volcanic Hazards in the North Pacific (United States)

    Dehn, J.; Webley, P.; Cunningham, K. W.


    For over 25 years, effective hazard communication has been key to effective mitigation of volcanic hazards in the North Pacific. These hazards are omnipresent, with a large event happening in Alaska every few years to a decade, though in many cases can happen with little or no warning (e.g. Kasatochi and Okmok in 2008). Here a useful hazard mitigation strategy has been built on (1) a large database of historic activity from many datasets, (2) an operational alert system with graduated levels of concern, (3) scenario planning, and (4) routine checks and communication with emergency managers and the public. These baseline efforts are then enhanced in the time of crisis with coordinated talking points, targeted studies and public outreach. Scientists naturally tend to target other scientists as their audience, whereas in effective monitoring of hazards that may only occur on year to decadal timescales, details can distract from the essentially important information. Creating talking points and practice in public communications can help make hazard response a part of the culture. Promoting situational awareness and familiarity can relieve indecision and concerns at the time of a crisis.

  2. Modeling lahar behavior and hazards (United States)

    Manville, Vernon; Major, Jon J.; Fagents, Sarah A.


    Lahars are highly mobile mixtures of water and sediment of volcanic origin that are capable of traveling tens to > 100 km at speeds exceeding tens of km hr-1. Such flows are among the most serious ground-based hazards at many volcanoes because of their sudden onset, rapid advance rates, long runout distances, high energy, ability to transport large volumes of material, and tendency to flow along existing river channels where populations and infrastructure are commonly concentrated. They can grow in volume and peak discharge through erosion and incorporation of external sediment and/or water, inundate broad areas, and leave deposits many meters thick. Furthermore, lahars can recur for many years to decades after an initial volcanic eruption, as fresh pyroclastic material is eroded and redeposited during rainfall events, resulting in a spatially and temporally evolving hazard. Improving understanding of the behavior of these complex, gravitationally driven, multi-phase flows is key to mitigating the threat to communities at lahar-prone volcanoes. However, their complexity and evolving nature pose significant challenges to developing the models of flow behavior required for delineating their hazards and hazard zones.

  3. NATO Advanced Research Workshop on Extreme Man-Made and Natural Hazards in Dynamics of Structures

    CERN Document Server

    Ibrahimbegovic, Adnan


    The book provides a critical assessment of the current knowledge and indicates new challenges which are brought about at present times by fighting man-made and natural hazards in transient analysis of structures. The latter concerns both permanently fixed structures, such as those built to protect people and/or sensitive storage material (e.g. military installations) or special structures found in transportation systems (e.g. bridges, tunnels), and moving structures (such as trains, planes, ships or cars). The present threat of terrorist attacks or accidental explosions, the climate change which brings strong stormy winds or even the destructive earthquake motion that occurs in previously inactive regions or brings about tsunamis, are a few examples of the kind of applications addressed in this work. Problems of such diversity cannot be placed within a single traditional scientific discipline, but call for the expertise in probability theory for quantifying the cause, interaction problems for better understan...

  4. The underground diposal of hazardous wastes - necessity, possibilities and limitations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Herrmann, A.G.; Brumsack, H.J.; Heinrichs, H.


    The natural geochemical cycles of many elements in the atmosphere, hydrosphere, and pedosphere have been changed during the past decades by anthropogenic activities. To put a stop to this development, a drastic reduction of the uncontrolled dispersal of potentially hazardous substances into our environment is necessary, compelling the need for the safe disposal of radioactive and nonradioactive hazardous wastes far away from the biosphere. The amount of potentially hazardous waste produced annually in West Germany is larger by a factor of at least 20 than the volume of hazardous material for which suitable underground disposal sites are planned and available at present. (orig.)

  5. Flood Hazard Recurrence Frequencies for the Savannah River Site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chen, K.F.


    Department of Energy (DOE) regulations outline the requirements for Natural Phenomena Hazard (NPH) mitigation for new and existing DOE facilities. The NPH considered in this report is flooding. The facility-specific probabilistic flood hazard curve defines, as a function of water elevation, the annual probability of occurrence or the return period in years. The facility-specific probabilistic flood hazard curves provide basis to avoid unnecessary facility upgrades, to establish appropriate design criteria for new facilities, and to develop emergency preparedness plans to mitigate the consequences of floods. A method based on precipitation, basin runoff and open channel hydraulics was developed to determine probabilistic flood hazard curves for the Savannah River Site. The calculated flood hazard curves show that the probabilities of flooding existing SRS major facilities are significantly less than 1.E-05 per year

  6. Advances in Remote Sensing Approaches for Hazard Mitigation and Natural Resource Protection in Pacific Latin America: A Workshop for Advanced Graduate Students, Post- Doctoral Researchers, and Junior Faculty (United States)

    Gierke, J. S.; Rose, W. I.; Waite, G. P.; Palma, J. L.; Gross, E. L.


    Though much of the developing world has the potential to gain significantly from remote sensing techniques in terms of public health and safety, they often lack resources for advancing the development and practice of remote sensing. All countries share a mutual interest in furthering remote sensing capabilities for natural hazard mitigation and resource development. With National Science Foundation support from the Partnerships in International Research and Education program, we are developing a new educational system of applied research and engineering for advancing collaborative linkages among agencies and institutions in Pacific Latin American countries (to date: Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, and Ecuador) in the development of remote sensing tools for hazard mitigation and water resources management. The project aims to prepare students for careers in science and engineering through their efforts to solve suites of problems needing creative solutions: collaboration with foreign agencies; living abroad immersed in different cultures; and adapting their academic training to contend with potentially difficult field conditions and limited resources. The ultimate goal of integrating research with education is to encourage cross-disciplinary, creative, and critical thinking in problem solving and foster the ability to deal with uncertainty in analyzing problems and designing appropriate solutions. In addition to traditional approaches for graduate and undergraduate research, we have built new educational systems of applied research and engineering: (1) the Peace Corp/Master's International program in Natural Hazards which features a 2-year field assignment during service in the U.S. Peace Corps, (2) the Michigan Tech Enterprise program for undergraduates, which gives teams of students from different disciplines the opportunity to work for three years in a business-like setting to solve real-world problems, and (3) a unique university exchange

  7. Hazard Analysis of Arid and Semi-Arid (ASAL) Regions of Kenya ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Objectives: The overall objective of this study was to prioritize hazards in the ASAL region. ... Health, local Government, and Provincial Administration, Environment and NGO. ... and country level to inform interventions and other developmental activities. Women ... Keywords: hazard, natural disaster, disaster risk, arid, Kenya ...

  8. High-level waste description, inventory and hazard

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Crandall, J.; Hennelly, E.J.; McElroy, J.L.


    High-level nuclear waste (HLW), including its origin, is described and the current differences in definitions discussed. Quantities of defense and commercial radioactive HLW, both volume and curie content, are given. Current waste handling, which is interimin nature, is described for the several sites. The HLW hazard is defined by the times during which various radionuclides are the dominant contributors. The hazard is also compared to that of the ore. Using ICRP-2, which is the legal reference in the US, the hazard of the waste reduces to a level equal to the ore in about 300 years. The disposal plans are summarized and it is shown that regulatory requirements will probably govern disposal operations in such a conservative manner that the risk (product of hazard times probability of release) may well be lower than for any other wastes in existence or perhaps lower than those for any other human endeavor

  9. Seismic hazard map of the western hemisphere (United States)

    Shedlock, K.M.; Tanner, J.G.


    Vulnerability to natural disasters increases with urbanization and development of associated support systems (reservoirs, power plants, etc.). Catastrophic earthquakes account for 60% of worldwide casualties associated with natural disasters. Economic damage from earthquakes is increasing, even in technologically advanced countries with some level of seismic zonation, as shown by the 1989 Loma Prieta, CA ($6 billion), 1994 Northridge, CA ($ 25 billion), and 1995 Kobe, Japan (> $ 100 billion) earthquakes. The growth of megacities in seismically active regions around the world often includes the construction of seismically unsafe buildings and infrastructures, due to an insufficient knowledge of existing seismic hazard. Minimization of the loss of life, property damage, and social and economic disruption due to earthquakes depends on reliable estimates of seismic hazard. National, state, and local governments, decision makers, engineers, planners, emergency response organizations, builders, universities, and the general public require seismic hazard estimates for land use planning, improved building design and construction (including adoption of building construction codes), emergency response preparedness plans, economic forecasts, housing and employment decisions, and many more types of risk mitigation. The seismic hazard map of the Americas is the concatenation of various national and regional maps, involving a suite of approaches. The combined maps and documentation provide a useful global seismic hazard framework and serve as a resource for any national or regional agency for further detailed studies applicable to their needs. This seismic hazard map depicts Peak Ground Acceleration (PGA) with a 10% chance of exceedance in 50 years for the western hemisphere. PGA, a short-period ground motion parameter that is proportional to force, is the most commonly mapped ground motion parameter because current building codes that include seismic provisions specify the

  10. Seismic hazard map of the western hemisphere

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. G. Tanner


    Full Text Available Vulnerability to natural disasters increases with urbanization and development of associated support systems (reservoirs, power plants, etc.. Catastrophic earthquakes account for 60% of worldwide casualties associated with natural disasters. Economic damage from earthquakes is increasing, even in technologically advanced countries with some level of seismic zonation, as shown by the 1989 Loma Prieta, CA ($ 6 billion, 1994 Northridge, CA ($ 25 billion, and 1995 Kobe, Japan (> $ 100 billion earthquakes. The growth of megacities in seismically active regions around the world often includes the construction of seismically unsafe buildings and infrastructures, due to an insufficient knowledge of existing seismic hazard. Minimization of the loss of life, property damage, and social and economic disruption due to earthquakes depends on reliable estimates of seismic hazard. National, state, and local governments, decision makers, engineers, planners, emergency response organizations, builders, universities, and the general public require seismic hazard estimates for land use planning, improved building design and construction (including adoption of building construction codes, emergency response preparedness plans, economic forecasts, housing and employment decisions, and many more types of risk mitigation. The seismic hazard map of the Americas is the concatenation of various national and regional maps, involving a suite of approaches. The combined maps and documentation provide a useful global seismic hazard framework and serve as a resource for any national or regional agency for further detailed studies applicable to their needs. This seismic hazard map depicts Peak Ground Acceleration (PGA with a 10% chance of exceedance in 50 years for the western hemisphere. PGA, a short-period ground motion parameter that is proportional to force, is the most commonly mapped ground motion parameter because current building codes that include seismic provisions

  11. Probabilistic seismic hazard analysis - lessons learned: A regulator's perspective

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Reiter, L.


    Probabilistic seismic hazard analysis is a powerful, rational and attractive tool for decision-making. It is capable of absorbing and integrating a wide range of information and judgement and their associated uncertainties into a flexible framework that permits the application of societal goals and priorities. Unfortunately, its highly integrative nature can obscure those elements which drive the results, its highly quantitative nature can lead to false impressions of accuracy, and its open embrace of uncertainty can make decision-making difficult. Addressing these problems can only help to increase its use and make it more palatable to those who need to assess seismic hazard and utilize the results. (orig.)

  12. Negotiating geophysical hazards in Nepal: An interdisciplinary approach (United States)

    Oven, Katie; Petley, Dave; Rosser, Nick; Dunn, Chris; Rigg, Jonathan


    It is widely accepted that the impact of natural hazards reflects not only the nature of geophysical processes but also the social conditions that prevail. The need for collaborative research to address these complex interactions between the natural and human systems is well recognised, however moving from theory to practice presents a number of significant challenges. How researchers frame problems; develop their research questions; select the methodologies to explore these questions; and privilege certain knowledges over others, can be seen to vary between physical and social science. Drawing on a case study examining the vulnerability of rural communities to landslides in the Upper Bhote Koshi Valley, Central Nepal, this paper explores how these barriers can be overcome and the benefits of undertaking interdisciplinary research within the natural hazards field. This research investigates the different framings of landslide risk and vulnerability from different stakeholder and disciplinary perspectives. Specifically, we ask: 1. Who is vulnerable to landslide hazard? 2. Why do people occupy landslide prone areas? 3. How do ‘at risk' rural communities perceive and respond to landslide hazard and risk? The findings, based on a series of participatory methodologies, challenge a number of assumptions made regarding landslide vulnerability in mountain communities. Within the Upper Bhote Koshi Valley clear transitions in settlement patterns, rural livelihoods and thus the occupation of landslide prone areas have been seen over time. For the majority of households, their decision to occupy these areas is driven by the economic and social benefits associated with the Arniko Highway which runs through the valley, linking Nepal with Tibet. Landslide vulnerability therefore emerges not just from societal marginalisation but also from situations of relative prosperity. The findings suggest that occupants of landslide prone areas have a good understanding of landslide hazard

  13. Hazard ranking systems for chemical wastes and chemical waste sites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Waters, R.D.; Parker, F.L.; Crutcher, M.R.


    Hazardous materials and substances have always existed in the environment. Mankind has evolved to live with some degree of exposure to toxic materials. Until recently the risk has been from natural toxins or natural background radiation. While rapid technological advances over the past few decades have improved the lifestyle of our society, they have also dramatically increased the availability, volume and types of synthetic and natural hazardous materials. Many of their effects are as yet uncertain. Products and manufacturing by-products that no longer serve a useful purpose are deemed wastes. For some waste products land disposal will always be their ultimate fate. Hazardous substances are often included in the waste products. One needs to classify wastes by degree of hazard (risk). Risk (degree of probability of loss) is usually defined for risk assessment as probability of an occurrence times the consequences of the occurrence. Perhaps even more important than the definition of risk is the choice of a risk management strategy. The choice of strategy will be strongly influenced by the decision criteria used. Those decision criteria could be utility (the greatest happiness of the greatest number), rights or technology based or some combination of the three. It is necessary to make such choices about the definition of risks and criteria for management. It is clear that these are social (i.e., political) and value choices and science has little to say on this matter. This is another example of what Alvin Weinberg has named Transcience where the subject matter is scientific and technical but the choices are social, political and moral. This paper shall deal only with the scientific and technical aspects of the hazardous waste problem to create a hazardous substances classification system

  14. Translating Volcano Hazards Research in the Cascades Into Community Preparedness (United States)

    Ewert, J. W.; Driedger, C. L.


    Research by the science community into volcanic histories and physical processes at Cascade volcanoes in the states of Washington, Oregon, and California has been ongoing for over a century. Eruptions in the 20th century at Lassen Peak and Mount St. Helen demonstrated the active nature of Cascade volcanoes; the 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens was a defining moment in modern volcanology. The first modern volcano hazards assessments were produced by the USGS for some Cascade volcanoes in the 1960s. A rich scientific literature exists, much of which addresses hazards at these active volcanoes. That said community awareness, planning, and preparation for eruptions generally do not occur as a result of a hazard analyses published in scientific papers, but by direct communication with scientists. Relative to other natural hazards, volcanic eruptions (or large earthquakes, or tsunami) are outside common experience, and the public and many public officials are often surprised to learn of the impacts volcanic eruptions could have on their communities. In the 1980s, the USGS recognized that effective hazard communication and preparedness is a multi-faceted, long-term undertaking and began working with federal, state, and local stakeholders to build awareness and foster community action about volcano hazards. Activities included forming volcano-specific workgroups to develop coordination plans for volcano emergencies; a concerted public outreach campaign; curriculum development and teacher training; technical training for emergency managers and first responders; and development of hazard information that is accessible to non-specialists. Outcomes include broader ownership of volcano hazards as evidenced by bi-national exchanges of emergency managers, community planners, and first responders; development by stakeholders of websites focused on volcano hazards mitigation; and execution of table-top and functional exercises, including evacuation drills by local communities.

  15. Investigation of risks and possible ecological and economic damages from large-scale natural and man-induced catastrophes in ecology-hazard regions of Central Asia and Caucasus

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Valyaev, A.N.; Kazakov, S.V.; Stepanets, O.V.; Solodukhin, V.P.; Petrov, V.A.; Aitmatov, I.T.; Aitmatova, D.T.; Tsitskishvili, M.S.; Pyuskyulyan, K.; Gevorgyan, R.G.; Aleksanyan, G.M.; Guliyev, I.S.


    Full text: Various threats to civilization such as natural and man-induced catastrophes, international terrorism, ecological imbalance, global climate change and others hazards have been recently increased in number. Today catastrophic processes are notable for a high degree of organization The humankind has faced the majority of hazards for the first time; therefore, there are no analogues and recipes to be used for their solving. Catastrophe risk have increased so much and joint efforts of the entire world immunity are required. One of the most effective ways to solve the issue can be estimation of risks and ecological-economic damages from catastrophes. Here we pay attention to the main regions, having the high seismic activities, where it is possible to stimulate natural calamities in this way or cause man-induced catastrophes with huge negative effects of international scale in Central Asia and Caucasus: Uranium, antimony and mercury tailing storages in Tian-Shan mountains. The possible terrorism acts here create the serious danger for Russian and USA military air bases, functioned near large Kyrgyzstan capital Bishkek city. The large Hydroelectric Stations with their huge dams and reservoirs, located near big industrial cities, different natural mines tailing storages, including Semipalatinsk Nuclear Test Polygon in East Kazakhstan

  16. Coastal flooding hazard related to storms and coastal evolution in Valdelagrana spit (Cadiz Bay Natural Park, SW Spain) (United States)

    Benavente, J.; Del Río, L.; Gracia, F. J.; Martínez-del-Pozo, J. A.


    Mapping of coastal inundation hazard related to storms requires the combination of multiple sources of information regarding meteorological, morphological and dynamic characteristics of both the area at risk and the studied phenomena. Variables such as beach slope, storm wave height or wind speed have traditionally been used, but detailed geomorphological features of the area as well as long-term shoreline evolution trends must also be taken into account in order to achieve more realistic results. This work presents an evaluation of storm flooding hazard in Valdelagrana spit and marshes (SW Spain), considering two types of storm that are characteristic of the area: a modal storm with 1 year of recurrence interval (maximum wave height of 3.3 m), and an extreme storm with 6-10 years of recurrence interval (maximum wave height of 10.6 m), both approaching the coast perpendicularly. After calculating theoretical storm surge elevation, a digital terrain model was made by adjusting topographic data to field work and detailed geomorphological analysis. A model of flooding extent was subsequently developed for each storm type, and then corrected according to the rates of shoreline change in the last decades, which were assessed by means of aerial photographs taking the dune toe as shoreline indicator. Results show that long-term coastline trend represents an important factor in the prediction of flooding extent, since shoreline retreat causes the deterioration of natural coastal defences as dune ridges, thus increasing coastal exposure to high-energy waves. This way, it has been stated that the lack of sedimentary supply plays an important role in spatial variability of inundation extent in Valdelagrana spit. Finally, a hazard map is presented, where calculated coastal retreat rates are employed in order to predict the areas that could be affected by future inundation events.

  17. Multi-Hazard Advanced Seismic Probabilistic Risk Assessment Tools and Applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Coleman, Justin L.; Bolisetti, Chandu; Veeraraghavan, Swetha; Parisi, Carlo; Prescott, Steven R.; Gupta, Abhinav


    Design of nuclear power plant (NPP) facilities to resist natural hazards has been a part of the regulatory process from the beginning of the NPP industry in the United States (US), but has evolved substantially over time. The original set of approaches and methods was entirely deterministic in nature and focused on a traditional engineering margins-based approach. However, over time probabilistic and risk-informed approaches were also developed and implemented in US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) guidance and regulation. A defense-in-depth framework has also been incorporated into US regulatory guidance over time. As a result, today, the US regulatory framework incorporates deterministic and probabilistic approaches for a range of different applications and for a range of natural hazard considerations. This framework will continue to evolve as a result of improved knowledge and newly identified regulatory needs and objectives, most notably in response to the NRC activities developed in response to the 2011 Fukushima accident in Japan. Although the US regulatory framework has continued to evolve over time, the tools, methods and data available to the US nuclear industry to meet the changing requirements have not kept pace. Notably, there is significant room for improvement in the tools and methods available for external event probabilistic risk assessment (PRA), which is the principal assessment approach used in risk-informed regulations and risk-informed decision-making applied to natural hazard assessment and design. This is particularly true if PRA is applied to natural hazards other than seismic loading. Development of a new set of tools and methods that incorporate current knowledge, modern best practice, and state-of-the-art computational resources would lead to more reliable assessment of facility risk and risk insights (e.g., the SSCs and accident sequences that are most risk-significant), with less uncertainty and reduced conservatisms.

  18. Multi-Hazard Advanced Seismic Probabilistic Risk Assessment Tools and Applications

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Coleman, Justin L. [Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States); Bolisetti, Chandu [Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States); Veeraraghavan, Swetha [Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States); Parisi, Carlo [Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States); Prescott, Steven R. [Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States); Gupta, Abhinav [Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States)


    Design of nuclear power plant (NPP) facilities to resist natural hazards has been a part of the regulatory process from the beginning of the NPP industry in the United States (US), but has evolved substantially over time. The original set of approaches and methods was entirely deterministic in nature and focused on a traditional engineering margins-based approach. However, over time probabilistic and risk-informed approaches were also developed and implemented in US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) guidance and regulation. A defense-in-depth framework has also been incorporated into US regulatory guidance over time. As a result, today, the US regulatory framework incorporates deterministic and probabilistic approaches for a range of different applications and for a range of natural hazard considerations. This framework will continue to evolve as a result of improved knowledge and newly identified regulatory needs and objectives, most notably in response to the NRC activities developed in response to the 2011 Fukushima accident in Japan. Although the US regulatory framework has continued to evolve over time, the tools, methods and data available to the US nuclear industry to meet the changing requirements have not kept pace. Notably, there is significant room for improvement in the tools and methods available for external event probabilistic risk assessment (PRA), which is the principal assessment approach used in risk-informed regulations and risk-informed decision-making applied to natural hazard assessment and design. This is particularly true if PRA is applied to natural hazards other than seismic loading. Development of a new set of tools and methods that incorporate current knowledge, modern best practice, and state-of-the-art computational resources would lead to more reliable assessment of facility risk and risk insights (e.g., the SSCs and accident sequences that are most risk-significant), with less uncertainty and reduced conservatisms.

  19. Modelling the costs of natural hazards in games (United States)

    Bostenaru-Dan, M.


    City are looked for today, including a development at the University of Torino called SimTorino, which simulates the development of the city in the next 20 years. The connection to another games genre as video games, the board games, will be investigated, since there are games on construction and reconstruction of a cathedral and its tower and a bridge in an urban environment of the middle ages based on the two novels of Ken Follett, "Pillars of the Earth" and "World Without End" and also more recent games, such as "Urban Sprawl" or the Romanian game "Habitat", dealing with the man-made hazard of demolition. A review of these games will be provided based on first hand playing experience. In games like "World without End" or "Pillars of the Earth", just like in the recently popular games of Zynga on social networks, construction management is done through providing "building" an item out of stylised materials, such as "stone", "sand" or more specific ones as "nail". Such approach could be used also for retrofitting buildings for earthquakes, in the series of "upgrade", not just for extension as it is currently in games, and this is what our research is about. "World without End" includes a natural disaster not so analysed today but which was judged by the author as the worst of manhood: the Black Death. The Black Death has effects and costs as well, not only modelled through action cards, but also on the built environment, by buildings remaining empty. On the other hand, games such as "Habitat" rely on role playing, which has been recently recognised as a way to bring games theory to decision making through the so-called contribution of drama, a way to solve conflicts through balancing instead of weighting, and thus related to Analytic Hierarchy Process. The presentation aims to also give hints on how to design a game for the problem of earthquake retrofit, translating the aims of the actors in such a process into role playing. Games are also employed in teaching of urban

  20. Delineation of the extent of milling-related contamination in a naturally contaminated aquifer system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Downs, William F.; Storms, Erik F.


    Uranium mill tailings from the Susquehanna-Western mill near Falls City, Texas, were pumped to tailings ponds located in abandoned open pit uranium mines. The ores from these mines were oxidized. Uranium and the associated hazardous constituents were present in these ores as relatively soluble secondary minerals. Because the tailings piles are located on the outcrops of the units designated as the uppermost aquifer, there is no upgradient aquifer from which to establish 'background' water quality. The widespread mineralization in the area naturally imposes a large variability in water quality in these units. It was necessary to demonstrate to State and Federal regulators that selected downgradient wells were beyond the influence of milling operations, and to develop a series of 'indicator parameters' that could be used to differentiate milling contaminated groundwater from that native to the aquifer. (author)

  1. 75 FR 35366 - Pipeline Safety: Applying Safety Regulation to All Rural Onshore Hazardous Liquid Low-Stress Lines (United States)


    ... DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration 49 CFR Part... Onshore Hazardous Liquid Low-Stress Lines AGENCY: Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration... to the risks that hazardous liquid and natural gas pipelines pose to the environment. In the Pipeline...

  2. Assessment of natural radioactivity and the associated radiation hazards in some Cameroonian building materials

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ngachin, M.; Garavaglia, M.; Giovani, C.; Kwato Njock, M.G.


    The concentration of 238 U, 232 Th, 40 K in natural and fabricated building materials used in Cameroon was investigated by a high-resolution γ-ray spectrometry system with a co-axial HPGe detector. Fourteen kinds of building materials were collected from factories and in the field. Each sample was therefore kept in a 500 ml plastic Marinelli beakers and measured in a very low-background laboratory. The measured activity concentrations range from 1.76 to 49.84 Bq kg -1 , from 0.32 to 147.2 Bq kg -1 and from 18.16 to 1226.29 Bq kg -1 for 238 U, 232 Th and 40 K respectively. The highest mean value of 238 U concentration was found in red compressed soil-brick type I (49.57±0.33 Bq kg -1 ) produced by MIPROMALO whereas the highest average concentration of 232 Th (138.89±12.51 Bq kg -1 ) and 40 K (1161.46±107.57 Bq kg -1 ) was found in gravel collected from an exploitation site in LOGBADJECK. The activity concentrations obtained were compared with available data from other investigations and with the world average value for soils. The radium equivalent activity Ra eq , the external hazard index H ex as well as the indoor absorbed dose rate D radical in air and the annual effective dose equivalent H radical E were evaluated to assess the radiation hazards for people living in dwellings made of studied materials. All building materials have shown Ra eq activity (range from 10.15 to 312.57 Bq kg -1 ) lower than the limit of 370 Bq kg -1 set in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD, 1979) report, and which is equivalent to a γ-dose of 1.5 mSv yr -1 All the examined materials are acceptable for use as building materials in accord with the OECD criterion. (author)

  3. The development of the globally harmonized system (GHS) of classification and labelling of hazardous chemicals

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Winder, Chris; Azzi, Rola; Wagner, Drew


    The hazards of chemicals can be classified using classification criteria that are based on physical, chemical and ecotoxicological endpoints. These criteria may be developed be iteratively, based on scientific or regulatory processes. A number of national and international schemes have been developed over the past 50 years, and some, such as the UN Dangerous Goods system or the EC system for hazardous substances, are in widespread use. However, the unnecessarily complicated multiplicity of existing hazard classifications created much unnecessary confusion at the user level, and a recommendation was made at the 1992 Rio Earth summit to develop a globally harmonized chemical hazard classification and compatible labelling system, including material safety data sheets and easily understandable symbols, that could be used for manufacture, transport, use and disposal of chemical substances. This became the globally harmonized system for the Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS). The developmental phase of the GHS is largely complete. Consistent criteria for categorising chemicals according to their toxic, physical, chemical and ecological hazards are now available. Consistent hazard communication tools such as labelling and material safety data sheets are also close to finalisation. The next phase is implementation of the GHS. The Intergovernmental Forum for Chemical Safety recommends that all countries implement the GHS as soon as possible with a view to have the system fully operational by 2008. When the GHS is in place, the world will finally have one system for classification of chemical hazards

  4. Assessing Hazard Vulnerability, Habitat Conservation, and Restoration for the Enhancement of Mainland China's Coastal Resilience (United States)

    Sajjad, Muhammad; Li, Yangfan; Tang, Zhenghong; Cao, Ling; Liu, Xiaoping


    Worldwide, humans are facing high risks from natural hazards, especially in coastal regions with high population densities. Rising sea levels due to global warming are making coastal communities' infrastructure vulnerable to natural disasters. The present study aims to provide a coupling approach of vulnerability and resilience through restoration and conservation of lost or degraded coastal natural habitats to reclamation under different climate change scenarios. The integrated valuation of ecosystems and tradeoffs model is used to assess the current and future vulnerability of coastal communities. The model employed is based on seven different biogeophysical variables to calculate a natural hazard index and to highlight the criticality of the restoration of natural habitats. The results show that roughly 25% of the coastline and more than 5 million residents are in highly vulnerable coastal areas of mainland China, and these numbers are expected to double by 2100. Our study suggests that restoration and conservation in recently reclaimed areas have the potential to reduce this vulnerability by 45%. Hence, natural habitats have proved to be a great defense against coastal hazards and should be prioritized in coastal planning and development. The findings confirm that natural habitats are critical for coastal resilience and can act as a recovery force of coastal functionality loss. Therefore, we recommend that the Chinese government prioritizes restoration (where possible) and conservation of the remaining habitats for the sake of coastal resilience to prevent natural hazards from escalating into disasters.

  5. Crowdsourcing as citizen-empowered tool for natural hazards. The MAppERS project. (United States)

    Bossi, Giulia; Mantovani, Matteo; Frigerio, Simone; Møller Janniche, Amalie; Bianchizza, Chiara; Del Bianco, Daniele


    MAppERS is a co-financed project by European Commission and it is focused on natural hazards risk prevention and emergency response, through the development of a smartphone application. The idea relies on the role of citizens and volunteers as 'territorial mappers' and the information they can provide to civil protection operators through the use of their smartphones. The strategy is to promote the active participation of citizens and volunteers in disaster risk reduction promoting responsibility and preparedness. The application embraces tools for crowdsourcing data collection, for preparedness, prevention and alert warnings. The pilot activity conducted in order to assess its usability and performance is presented. One activity presented took place in Denmark, by Frederikssund Halsnæs Fire & Rescue Service, where 12 voluntary citizens were enrolled. The age ranged between young and elderly people with different educational level. Two separated groups were defined; one followed an introductory course on the application usage and were supervised during the test, while the other was untrained and without support. The usability of the app was assessed through the filling in of a form. Results showed that volunteers were extremely interested in the app and were seeing the advantage of using it. The app was considered user-friendly even to elderly people. The differences in comprehension of several aspects of the application by the two groups allowed to highlight the weak points in terms of approachability. These were then addressed in the following release of the app.

  6. Natural hazards on alluvial fans: the debris flow and flash flood disaster of December 1999, Vargas state, Venezuela (United States)

    Larsen, Matthew C.; Wieczorek, Gerald F.; Eaton, L.S.; Torres-Sierra, Heriberto; Sylva, Walter F.


    Large populations live on or near alluvial fans in locations such as Los Angeles, California, Salt Lake City, Utah, Denver, Colorado, and lesser known areas such as Sarno, Italy, and Vargas, Venezuela. Debris flows and flash floods occur episodically in these alluvial fan environments, and place many communities at high risk during intense and prolonged rainfall. In December 1999, rainstorms induced thousands of landslides along the Cordillera de la Costa, Vargas, Venezuela. Rainfall accumulation of 293 mm during the first 2 weeks of December was followed by an additional 911 mm of rainfall on December 14 through 16. Debris flows and floods inundated coastal communities resulting in a catastrophic death toll of as many as 30,000 people. Flash floods and debris flows caused severe property destruction on alluvial fans at the mouths of the coastal mountain drainage network. In time scales spanning thousands of years, the alluvial fans along this Caribbean coastline are dynamic zones of high geomorphic activity. Because most of the coastal zone in Vargas consists of steep mountain fronts that rise abruptly from the Caribbean Sea, the alluvial fans provide practically the only flat areas upon which to build. Rebuilding and reoccupation of these areas requires careful determination of hazard zones to avoid future loss of life and property. KEY TERMS: Debris flows, flash floods, alluvial fans, natural hazards, landslides, Venezuela

  7. Critical asset and portfolio risk analysis: an all-hazards framework. (United States)

    Ayyub, Bilal M; McGill, William L; Kaminskiy, Mark


    This article develops a quantitative all-hazards framework for critical asset and portfolio risk analysis (CAPRA) that considers both natural and human-caused hazards. Following a discussion on the nature of security threats, the need for actionable risk assessments, and the distinction between asset and portfolio-level analysis, a general formula for all-hazards risk analysis is obtained that resembles the traditional model based on the notional product of consequence, vulnerability, and threat, though with clear meanings assigned to each parameter. Furthermore, a simple portfolio consequence model is presented that yields first-order estimates of interdependency effects following a successful attack on an asset. Moreover, depending on the needs of the decisions being made and available analytical resources, values for the parameters in this model can be obtained at a high level or through detailed systems analysis. Several illustrative examples of the CAPRA methodology are provided.

  8. Assessment of the natural radioactivity and its radiological hazards in prospective ore deposit sites in Southwestern Nigeria

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ifeoluwa, O.P.; Obed, R.O. I.


    Assessment of the natural radioactivity was conducted in three Southwestern states, Ekiti, Kogi and Kwara in Nigeria spanning over approximately a 9,000 km 2 on earmarked prospective ore deposits sites where thirty six (36) top soil samples were collected then taken to the laboratory for analysis so as to determine and deduce its radiological hazards and health implication prior to exploitation/exploration. The samples collected at 36 locations, mainly undisturbed and virgin lands could determine the annual effective dose (mSv.y -1 ) and the average absorbed dose (nGy/h) for a person living in the rural community along the axis and this was found to be approximately 0.114 mSvy -1 and 93.60±14.4 nGyh -1 respectively. Other health indices are drawn up in the tables found below.

  9. Radiological hazards of narghile smoking

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Khater, A.E.M.; Abd El-Aziz, N.S.; Al-Sewaidan, H.A.; Chaouachi, K.


    Narghile smoking pastes, known as jurak and moassel, are not standardized manufacture. This study aims at drawing the first conclusions on the potential hazards of radioactivity in relation to moassel-narghile smoking. The results indicate the existence of a wide range of variations in the natural radioactivity. The distribution pattern of these natural radio-nuclides, during smoking, between smoke, ash and water filter is unknown, except for 210Po. Radiological dose assessment due to intake of 210Po was calculated and the possible radio-toxicity of the measured radio-nuclides is discussed. Further research in this direction is needed. (author)(tk)

  10. Quantitative physical models of volcanic phenomena for hazards assessment of critical infrastructures (United States)

    Costa, Antonio


    Volcanic hazards may have destructive effects on economy, transport, and natural environments at both local and regional scale. Hazardous phenomena include pyroclastic density currents, tephra fall, gas emissions, lava flows, debris flows and avalanches, and lahars. Volcanic hazards assessment is based on available information to characterize potential volcanic sources in the region of interest and to determine whether specific volcanic phenomena might reach a given site. Volcanic hazards assessment is focussed on estimating the distances that volcanic phenomena could travel from potential sources and their intensity at the considered site. Epistemic and aleatory uncertainties strongly affect the resulting hazards assessment. Within the context of critical infrastructures, volcanic eruptions are rare natural events that can create severe hazards. In addition to being rare events, evidence of many past volcanic eruptions is poorly preserved in the geologic record. The models used for describing the impact of volcanic phenomena generally represent a range of model complexities, from simplified physics based conceptual models to highly coupled thermo fluid dynamical approaches. Modelling approaches represent a hierarchy of complexity, which reflects increasing requirements for well characterized data in order to produce a broader range of output information. In selecting models for the hazard analysis related to a specific phenomenon, questions that need to be answered by the models must be carefully considered. Independently of the model, the final hazards assessment strongly depends on input derived from detailed volcanological investigations, such as mapping and stratigraphic correlations. For each phenomenon, an overview of currently available approaches for the evaluation of future hazards will be presented with the aim to provide a foundation for future work in developing an international consensus on volcanic hazards assessment methods.

  11. Modelling Multi Hazard Mapping in Semarang City Using GIS-Fuzzy Method (United States)

    Nugraha, A. L.; Awaluddin, M.; Sasmito, B.


    One important aspect of disaster mitigation planning is hazard mapping. Hazard mapping can provide spatial information on the distribution of locations that are threatened by disaster. Semarang City as the capital of Central Java Province is one of the cities with high natural disaster intensity. Frequent natural disasters Semarang city is tidal flood, floods, landslides, and droughts. Therefore, Semarang City needs spatial information by doing multi hazard mapping to support disaster mitigation planning in Semarang City. Multi Hazards map modelling can be derived from parameters such as slope maps, rainfall, land use, and soil types. This modelling is done by using GIS method with scoring and overlay technique. However, the accuracy of modelling would be better if the GIS method is combined with Fuzzy Logic techniques to provide a good classification in determining disaster threats. The Fuzzy-GIS method will build a multi hazards map of Semarang city can deliver results with good accuracy and with appropriate threat class spread so as to provide disaster information for disaster mitigation planning of Semarang city. from the multi-hazard modelling using GIS-Fuzzy can be known type of membership that has a good accuracy is the type of membership Gauss with RMSE of 0.404 the smallest of the other membership and VAF value of 72.909% of the largest of the other membership.

  12. Dealing with natural hazards in the Barcelonnette region - a multi-disciplinary collaboration from understanding to management (United States)

    Kappes, Melanie; Frigerio, Simone; Luna, Byron Quan; Traveletti, Julien; Spickermann, Anke; Krzeminska, Dominika; Angignard, Marjory


    The Barcelonnette area, part of the Ubaye-Valley in the South French Alps, is highly exposed to natural hazard (mudslides, debris flows, torrential floods, river floods, avalanches and rockfalls); La Valette, Poche, Super-Sauze, Faucon are examples of well-known risk settings studied by scientists for several decades. In the framework of the Mountain Risks network, young researchers are working on different steps and aspects of the protection of the communities. It requires the collaboration of experts from different disciplines assembling the "living with risk" chain that has to cover the identification of the hazard, the risk assessment, risk management and the socio-economic and political decision-making. On the example of the Barcelonnette region, this work demonstrates such a multi-disciplinary cooperation within the Mountain Risks project. Starting with a multi-hazard analysis on a medium-scale level (1:10.000-1:50.000) for an overview over the hotspots in the basin a link is established to the local level analyses going into more detail. To forecast potential landslides in black marls and to assess the risk it is important to know the mechanisms leading to failure and the mechanisms determining subsequent movement. With respect to the Super-Sauze and La Valette mudslides detailed monitoring of hydrological features (i.e. high resolution temperature observations, large and medium scale infiltration experiments), displacement monitoring for short and long term kinematics analysis (i.e. image correlation technique applied on terrestrial oblique optical image, aerial and terrestrial laser scanning survey, differential global positioning system), small-scale testing in the laboratory (i.e. standard geotechnical, flume and centrifuge tests) and numerical modelling are performed to understand the mechanisms that might trigger and control the landslide. Integration and interpretation of these multi-source data allow to constrain conceptual models which are essential

  13. Moderating Climate Hazard Risk through Cooperation in Asian Drylands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Troy Sternberg


    Full Text Available Asia drylands face increasing climate hazard risk, changing socio-economic