Environmental Risks and Disasters

Environmental Risks and Disasters - Environmental Risks and...

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Environmental Risks and Disasters Lecture Notes 1 (1/22/2008) Introduction. Risks in many different forms. 1. The environment can be a dangerous place. Natural disasters, such as tornados, hurricanes, earthquakes, landslides and others, each year claim tens of thousands of lives and cause many billion dollars worth of damage. Millions of lives are directly impacted through loss or damage to homes, and many more are inconvenienced -- if sometimes only by having to pay for the damage through taxes or insurance premiums. 2. Natural disasters are caused by natural agents, or natural phenomena. For example, hurricane Katrina was a very large and powerful tropical cyclone. Already we can attempt to make a distinction between the effect on us, meaning on people, and the phenomenon, the storm. A disaster can result from a storm, but usually this requires that somebody gets hurt, or that somebody loses a lot of money. That is, it is hard to talk about a natural disaster, unless there is a significant loss. 3. Natural phenomena, such as hurricanes, volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, landslides, tornados, and so on, have the potential to cause harm, and are therefore threats to our well-being. The goal in this course is to develop the tools to analyze this threat in some detail, in order to come to a better understanding of the risks
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This note was uploaded on 09/29/2008 for the course ENV V1201 taught by Professor Goranekstrom during the Spring '07 term at Columbia.

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Environmental Risks and Disasters - Environmental Risks and...

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