Natural Disasters

Nowadays, people around the world are affected by natural disasters. These may be caused by climate change such as drought, flood, and cyclone, the environment such as pollution, deforestation, desertification, pest infestation or combinations of these, or the destroy of ozone layer will contribute to the green house effect. People’s homes are wiped out and livelihoods are destroyed. Poverty, population pressures and environmental degradation mean that increasing numbers of people are vulnerable to natural disasters.

In Australia, natural disasters such as floods, bush-fires and tropical cyclones occur regularly across the Australian continent. They cause more than SSL . 14 billion damage each year to homes, businesses and the nation’s facility, along with serious results to communities. Scientists claim that more natural disasters will occur with worse consequences such as severe cyclones, Storms and floods, are expected in the future. Australian government and people need to do many actions immediately to protect the nature in this nation the same as to protect our blue planet.

This study has focused on the typical natural disasters in Australia and main reasons cause these by humans. Moreover, the study also revealed that humans need to do some actions now to reduce the natural disasters immediately. Therefore, we can try to overcome our selfishness to correct own mistakes and let this Earth be green forever. Introduction: Natural disasters have affected people since humans first appeared on the earth. They have influenced, shaped and modified human behavior, changing the way people live with and respond to the nature.

In Australia, billions of dollars have been spent in trying to prevent, prepare for, respond to and recover from natural disasters. Moreover, natural disasters have exulted in enormous intangible losses, causing grief through the loss of life and personal possessions. Examples include the probability or frequency of occurrence of a natural disaster, the number of people killed or injured, or the number of buildings damaged and the extent of that damage. Australian people need to do many actions to decrease the green house effect and the bigger spread of the ozone layers.

Typical natural disasters in Australia: Natural hazards are a threat of a naturally occurring event that will have a negative effect on people or the environment. A natural disaster is the effect f a natural hazard such as flood, tornado, earthquake, and landslides leads to financial, environmental or human losses. In the past and today, Australia was experienced a lot Of natural disasters including droughts, bushfire, floods, cyclones. These events cause great financial hardship for individuals and communities, and can result in loss of life.

The natural disasters had come to be seen as part of the Australian national character as described in the poem ‘My Country’ by Throated Mackerel (1904): love a sunburns country, a land of sweeping plains, Of ragged mountain ranges, of droughts and flooding rains. Eve her far horizons, I love her jewel-sea, Her beauty and her terror – the wide brown land for me! Drought: means that the shortage of rainfall over a three month period or years which causes the shortage of water and is not enough for users’ normal needs.

Moreover in Australia, droughts are not simply low rainfall however these must be perpetual droughts. People use water in so many different ways so there is no universal definition of droughts. ; In Western New South Wales and west Darling areas, the Federation Drought was happened in 1895 by heavy overstocking, and the arrival of rabbits which crossed the Murray River into western New South Wales in 1 881. Overstocking caused widespread severe erosion and increased the effects of the drought.

C] This drought (1 991-1995) in North-eastern New South Wales and much of Queensland was the result of the lowest rainfall levels on record. Amount Of major water went dry and many others reached to critically low levels. Average rural production fell by over 1 0 per cent and rural unemployment rose. It affected the Australian economy about 5 million Australian dollars. In 2009, drought conditions in South East Australia continued, after one of the driest summers for the region. Many towns in Victoria were close to running out of water.

Many people in these towns had to live in the shortage of water condition. They could not take showers, wash their clothes, or cook. C Bushfire in Australia: are common natural disasters in Australia. Bushfire are generally slower moving, but have a higher temperature. They pass in two to five minutes, but they can smolder for days. Fire in the crown of the tree can move rapidly. Large areas of land are ravaged every year by bushfire, which also cause property damage and loss of life. L] In 1967 Southern Australian was suffered drought conditions.

On 7 February, 264,270 hectares were burnt in Southern Tasmania in about five hours. The worst destroyed part was the Hobart fire. Sixty-two people died, and 1 ,400 homes and other buildings were destroyed. At the time, it was the largest loss of life and property in Australia from fire on any single day in Australia’s history. O In the summer of 1983, conditions in Victoria and South Australia temperature were extremely high and hot level. Drought conditions with a heat wave with temperatures of 43 degrees Celsius meant that forests were highly combustible.

On Wednesday 16 February’ (now known as ‘Ash Wednesday’), round 180 bushfire were burning across both states, the largest of them starting in Victoria. 0 The Canberra bushfire of 2003 caused severe damage to the outskirts of Canberra, the Australian capital city. Almost 70% of the Australian Capital Territory pasture, forests (pine plantations) and nature parks were severely damaged, and most of the renowned Mount Stroll Observatory was destroyed. After burning for a week around the edges of the ACT, the fires entered the suburbs of Canberra on 18 January 2003.

Over the next ten hours, four people died and more than 500 homes were destroyed r severely damaged, requiring a significant relief and reconstruction effort. AAA Flood: is an overflow of an expanse of water which causes that water covers land which is normally dry. The flood in 1852 wiped out 71 buildings, and 89 of the town’s 250 inhabitants died. Dover one million square kilometers of Queensland and New South Wales (and a smaller area of Victoria) were flooded in April 1990. The towns of Angry and Charlie’s were the worst affected with around 2,000 homes inundated.

Six people were killed and around 60 were injured. Queensland flooding a series of floods it Australia, beginning in December 2010, primarily in the state of Queensland including its capital city, Brisbane. The floods forced the evacuation of thousands of people from towns and cities. At least seventy towns and over 200,000 people were affected. Damage initially was estimated at around Us$l billion. The estimated reduction in Australia’s GAP is about Us$30 billion. Three-quarters of the State Of Queensland Was declared a disaster zone.

A cyclone: is an area of low pressure around which the winds flow clockwise in the Southern Hemisphere and counterclockwise in the Northern Hemisphere. If the sustained winds around the centre reach 119 km/h (with wind gusts in excess of 1 70 km/h), then the system is called a severe tropical cyclone. In other countries severe tropical cyclones are called hurricanes or typhoons. The Tropical Cyclone Season in Australia extends from November to April. 0 Tropical Cyclone Dad caused severe damage to resorts on the Withstands Islands, Queensland, in January 1970.

Its path of destruction included the islands of Daydream, South Mole and Hyman. The damage bill was estimated at $AWAY million and 14 people were killed. 0 On Christmas Eve 1974, Cyclone Tracy struck the city of Darwin in the Northern Territory. One hundred and ninety-five millimeters of rain fell in less than nine hours, and winds of around 250 km per hour flattened the city. In terms of damage to a community, Cyclone Tracy remains Australia’s most destructive for property damage. 71 people were killed, and many thousands injured. Of a population of 43,000, 25,000 were left homeless.

C] Fierce winds and driving rains brought by the Cyclone Hashish which hit Queensland, especially the lashing northern coastal areas of the Australian state. With winds reaching up to km/h (1 81 MPH), Cyclone Ways was ripping roofs off alluding and had cut power to at least 1 00,000 people. The storm struck south of Cairns and was moving inland, with forecasters warning of severe damage and likely deaths. Natural causes of these typical natural disasters in Australia: 0 Droughts: Comes droughts are localized , due to particular climatic variations that may occur.

Many of Australia’s widespread droughts are related to II NIH Southern Oscillation system (ONES). In a normal year, warm surface area is blown west across the Pacific towards Australia. This brings heavy rain to northern Australia. However, this event causes these winds and surface ocean which current reverse their direction. D Certain gases in the atmosphere, mainly carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide and fluorocarbons, act like the glass in a greenhouse, allowing sunlight through to heat the Earth’s surface. These gases will increase the temperature on our Earth which will become hotter and hotter.

The land is affected because the water is in the land which is evaporated. Moreover, there is the low of rainfall that causes the death of the plants, animals, and also humans. C] Ozone layers help to protect the Earth’s surface from the directly interaction with the ultraviolet rays from the sun. However, the larger hole of ozone layers will make the heat of our planet become hotter. This is the reason why a drought can be happened in Australia. 0 Bushfire: L] Lightning strikes are the cause of virtually all naturally occurring bushfire. Approximately 26% of all bushfire on public land are started by lightning strikes.

There are, on average, more fires started by lightning than any other individual cause. ? Fuel load: When the fuel load is greater, the fire will be hotter and more intense. Fuel which is concentrated with adequate spacing and oxygen, will burn faster than heavily compacted or scattered fuel resources. Smaller pieces of fuel such as twigs, litter and branches burn quickly, particularly when they are dry and loosely arranged. Some types of grasses burn very rapidly, while larger fuels, such as tree trunks, do not burn as easily. The natural oil within Eucalypti trees promotes the combustion of fuel.

Weather condition: The higher the temperature the more likely it is that a fire will start or continue to burn.. Droughts and the length of drought seasons are the most serious factors which lead to small or large bushfire.. Dry air promotes a greater intensity fire than moist air. Plants become more lambed at a low humidity because they release their moisture more easily. C] Floods: C] Floods are most often caused by high levels of precipitation. In Australia, this is mostly caused by unusually heavy rainfall, although in other parts of the world, floods can be started by melting snow.

In northern Australia, flooding is often caused by tropical cyclones and other large tropical storms. In south-eastern Australia, floods are usually caused by low pressure systems that develop in the late winter and spring, although some strong tropical systems can affect the area as well. Flooding of this sort can be affected by he El NIH Southern Oscillation (ONES. ) During La Nina years, heavy rains fall in Australia. Floods can be more common in La Nina years. 0 Another less common cause of flooding is when seawater comes up onto dry land.

This can happen for a number of reasons. Low pressure systems, such as tropical cyclones, can cause a storm surge to inundate the land. Tsunamis, or giant waves created by earthquakes, volcanic eruptions or meteor collisions, can also inundate the land with seawater. C] Another rare cause of flooding is dam failure. Dams have been built on some rivers to generate hydroelectric power ND reduce the severity of floods downstream. If these dams fail, due to poor engineering or an earthquake, however, flooding will occur downstream. Cyclones: C] The main source of energy for tropical cyclones is the warm oceans in the tropical regions.

To initiate a tropical cyclone the sea-surface temperature generally needs to be above 26. ICC. However, existing cyclones often persist as they move over cooler waters. C] The development of a tropical cyclone also relies on favorable broad-scale wind regimes and can persist for several days with many following quite erratic paths. They lose their source of energy hen they move over land or colder oceans causing them to dissipate.

Weakening may also occur if the cyclone moves into an unfavorable wind regime which disrupts the structure of the system. Sometimes a decaying tropical cyclone may interact with a weather system in higher latitudes to cause impacts far from the tropics. Man-made reasons for all typical disasters in Australia: C] Deforestation: Forests are greatly helping reduce the amount of pollutants in the air. So, the depletion of these groups of trees is greatly increasing the risk that carbon monoxide would reach the atmosphere and result in the Appleton of the ozone layer, which in turn results to global warming.

Industries: They increase the polluted level in a quick way by injecting many poisonous gases such as carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxides or hydroxide sulfide. This will lead to the greenhouse effect which will cause many natural disasters such as droughts, floods, bushfire, and cyclones. Automobiles: Automobiles, whether they run on petrol or diesel, create pollutions and release harmful gases into the atmosphere. These gases, in turn, create the temperature change in the atmosphere. The forever- increasing use of automobiles causes natural disasters regularly.

Al Population growth: The high rate of population growth has been indirectly responsible for the greenhouse effect. With the increase in the number of people, the need for things like accommodation, clothes, cars, etc has increased. The result is more industries, more cars, more deforestation, and so on. C Burning of fossil fuels: We all know that burning of fossil fuels, like petroleum and oil, wood and gas results in release of pollutants into the atmosphere. With time, the consumption of fossil fuels, be it for industrial purposes or consumer purposes, has increased and with it, the pollution bevels in the world.

These will lead to the droughts and bushfire. The consequences of these natural disasters in Australia: Natural disasters cause a number of serious effects. Tropical cyclones bring strong winds and heavy rains which cause other natural disasters such as flood, storm tide, landslide, and water pollution. Flood areas, which in turn may lead to landslide, erosion, water quality deterioration or turbidity, as well as sediment deposition. Severe storms range from isolated thunderstorms to intense low-pressure systems producing effects such as severe winds, heavy main, lightning, flood, storm tide, hail and coastal erosion.

Moreover, the effects of bushfire include water pollution, erosion and reduced water catchments yield. A landslide may block a watercourse, leading to flooding and debris flows upstream. Earthquakes may also bring fire, flood, water pollution, landslide, tsunami, and soil liquefaction. Natural disasters may also produce physical, social, and economic effects. Unphysical effects: express on the facilities may involve structural and non-structural damage and/or progressive infrastructure deterioration. They may also result in the release f hazardous materials such as chemicals which affect the environment and people’s health.

Disaster Date Affected (no. Of people) Drought 1992 Extreme temp. 1993 3,000,500 storm 1994 Extreme temp. 1994 Extreme temp. 1995 500,100 Storm 1996 450,220 1995 400,045 1994 240,220 Flood 2010 200,000 storm 1994 120,090 Killed (no. Of people) Disaster Date Extreme temp. 2009 347 Wildfire 2009 180 Wildfire 1983 75 Flood 1984 36 Storm 1985 27 storm 1994 22 Mass move. Wet 1997 19 Extreme temp. 1993 17 Wildfire 2005 16 Flood 1998 14 Social effects: may include facilities, injuries, homeless or loss of incomes, or secondary effects such as psychological impact, disease, or loss of social cohesion.

No of events: 162 No of people killed: 959 Average killed per year: 31 No of people affected: 16,051,010 Average affected per year: 517,775 Comments Damage (IIS$ X 1 ,000): Economic Damage per year (US$ X 1 ,OHO): 926,451 C] Economic effects: may include business disruption; disruption to the supply of power, water, and telecommunications; and the cost of response and relief operation. Secondary economic impacts, such as insurance losses and rising premiums, loss of investor confidence, and costs of providing welfare and deiced assistance may also result.

The actions of Australian government to protect the nature: D Natural issues: The Australian government, in its 2008 federal budget, announced increased spending on environmental issues. This includes $200 million to go towards protecting the Great Barrier Reef. The package is being called “Reef Rescue” and aims to tackle climate change and improve water quality around the Great Barrier Reef. Given the Great Barrier Reef is one of the natural wonders of the world. C] Green house gases and global warming: In 2007, the Prime Minister agreed to join in the Kyoto protocol.

He discussed tit the leader of this organization to find the limited point of emission to the environment. Before 2007, Australia did not accept the invitation from the Kyoto protocol to participate. However Australian Government realized that they had to join more effort in the actions to protect the nature and to prevent the natural disasters. Finally, they would not allow the limited emission up to 8%. Prime Minister Julia Gaillardia said on Monday her government would decide next year how to charge Australia’s major polluters for the carbon gases that they emit in a bid to curb the nation’s greenhouse gas emissions.

Galliard’s plan to fast-track Australia’s introduction of financial penalties for polluters came hours ahead of a united Nations climate change summit in Mexico starting on Monday that will consider how the Kyoto Protocol on reducing greenhouse gas emissions will be replaced after 2012. Some actions need to done now and in the future for each individuals: Every one of us, whatever age we are can do something to help slow down and reverse Some of the damage. We cannot leave the problem-solving entirely to the experts – we all have a responsibility for our environment.

We must learn to live in a sustainable way I. E. Earn to use our natural resources which include air, freshwater, forests, wildlife, farmland and seas without damaging them. As populations expand and lifestyles change, we must keep the world in a good condition so that future generations will have the same natural resources that we have. D Waste: Humans create such a lot of rubbish every day. Between 1 992 and 2008 household waste increased by 16% and we now produce just less than half a tone per person each year in Australia. D Clarify the rubbish. Use recycled paper to help save trees. Chlorine bleach is usually used to make newspapers and this pollutes rivers. It’s better to use unbleached, recycled paper whenever you can. L] Take your old clothes to charity shops. Some are sold, others are returned to textile mills for recycling. [l Try to avoid buying plastic. It’s hard to recycle. One way to cut down on plastic is to refuse to use carrier bags offered by supermarkets and use strong, long lasting shopping bags instead, or re-use plastic bags over and over again, until they wear out and then recycle them.

D Don’t buy over- packed goods. Many things we buy have unnecessary amounts of plastic and paper around them. Rainforest’s: are valuable habitats. Thousands of rainforest’s plants contain substances that can be used in medicines and the tribal people of the forests have great knowledge of them. Rainforest’s are also important in the world generally, especially in Australia because they provide us with oxygen and help to regulate the world’s climate and atmosphere, prevents the global warming and ozone layer which happen in Australia very quickly.

C Never buy products made up of tropical hardwoods C] Garden and flower shops sometimes sell rainforest’s orchids that have been imported, although endangered ones have been protected since 1973. If you buy an orchid, check that it has been grown in Australia. 0 Eating a burgees may be helping to destroy the rainforest’s! Most burgers in Australia are made from cattle. However, the cattle are often fed on Soya beans and a lot of that comes from Brazil where large areas of forest have been destroyed to make Soya fields.

Before buying a burger, ask where the cattle came from and what they were fed on. Try a veggie burger for a change! 0 Pollution: The air, water and soil of habitats all over the world have been, and are still being polluted in many different ways. This pollution effects the health of living things. Air is damaged by car and lorry fumes, and power stations create acid rain which destroys entire forests and lakes. When fossil fuels I. E. Oil, gas and coal are burned to provide energy for lighting, cooking etc. They form polluting gases.

Oils spills pollute sea water and kill marine life; chemical waste from factories and sewage works, and artificial fertilizers from farmland, pollute river water, killing wildlife and spreading disease. The careless or deliberate dumping of litter in the nature is not only unsightly but dangerous for wildlife too. CLC Don’t drop litter. L] Use less energy by switching off lights when rooms are not in use, not wasting hot water, not overheating rooms and not boiling more water than necessary when making a cup of tea! O Use a bicycle or walk instead of using a car for short trips.

L] If you spot pollution, such as oil on the beach, report it to the local council. If you suspect a stream is polluted, report it to the local Environmental Health Officer. D If you use chlorine-based bleach or detergents containing phosphates you are contributing to water pollution. Try to buy ‘environmentally-friendly’ products which don’t contain these. CO Organic foods are produced without the use of artificial fertilizers and pesticides, preventing these pollutants from contaminating habitats and entering the food chain. [1 The Ozone Layer: is very important because it prevents too many of the sun’s ultra violet rays from reaching us.

Too many ultra violet rays can give us skin cancer and destroy plankton, the important microscopic life in the sea. In the sass it was discovered that ‘holes’ were appearing in the ozone layer above the Antarctic and Arctic. CIFS, chlorofluorocarbons, are gases used in the manufacture of aerosols and ridges, are believed have been responsible for destroying the ozone layer. In 1987 the Montreal Protocol was introduced and later signed up to by 120 countries (included Australia) who agreed to half their CUFF emissions by the year 2000.

We now know that apart from destroying the ozone layer, CIFS contribute significantly to the greenhouse effect. Even though they have been banned, their long atmospheric lifetime of 20 to 1 00 years will continue to contribute to the greenhouse effect until they finally are broken down by the sun. CLC If you know Of anyone getting rid of an old fridge, tell them that the CIFS can be drained out and recycled – contact the local council and they will dispose of the fridge safely. New fridges do not contain CIFS.

The Greenhouse Effect: Certain gases in the atmosphere, mainly carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide and fluorocarbons, act like the glass in a greenhouse, allowing sunlight through to heat the Earth’s surface but trapping some of the heat as it radiates back into space. Without this the Earth would be frozen and lifeless. The result is an increase in average world temperatures and is already causing more droughts, flooding and extreme weather conditions such cyclone. Cotton waste electricity or heat. Electricity and heating are produced by burning coal, oil and gas and this action gives off carbon dioxide.

C] Car fumes produce carbon dioxide and nitrogen oxide – so try to cut down on car journeys if possible. Use a bike or walk – its good exercise for you too! CLC Recycle as much of your waste as you can. Methane, the most effective ‘greenhouse gas’, is released into the air as the rubbish in landfill sites rots. CLC Cut down on how much meat you eat. Meat consumption has risen and farm animals, especially cattle produce methane. Not only that but they are recently fed Soya which is often grown on land where rainforest’s have been destroyed.

We need the rainforest’s to absorb carbon dioxide and remove it from the air. Australian situations in the future: If we still kept these situation and let these natural disasters happen, Australia would have worse and worse natural disasters in the future. After several years of droughts and increasing temperatures, conditions will be right for a massive fire storm nowadays, which was exactly what happened in our summer of 2009. The fires were so hot that metal and glass melted and ran like treacle in the intense heat. Temperatures of 1,200 Celsius were typical along fire fronts with some exceeding even that.

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