GOPH 375 Lecture Notes - Planetary Differentiation, Lithosphere, Actualism

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13 Mar 2013
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Chapter 1
Not responsible for Population Growth (pg 14-16)
What is a Natural Disaster?
A natural disaster is a natural occurrence in which a large amount of energy is released in a short
amount of time, and causes loss of life (human or otherwise) or damage to property/economic
losses
Natural disasters are often triggered when society ignores hazardous conditions in nature
Deadliest natural hazards are hurricanes and earthquakes (Table 1.2)
o Others: floods (cause landslides), volcanic eruptions (landslides)
Measuring hazards
o Disaster frequency: number of occurrences in a given length of time
o Return period: length of time between similar events (inverse of frequency)
o Magnitude: amount of energy fuelling a natural event
Figure 1.1 graph
o Smaller energy releases all the time, bigger energy releases…
Figure 1.2
o Geological disasters: earthquakes, volcanoes, mass movements
o Weather disasters: heat waves, drought, wildfires flood, storms cause of most
Canadian natural disasters - drought
o Changing weather patterns may increase the frequency of natural disasters
Table 1.3
More densely populated places have more fatalities in a natural disaster than less populated
Vulnerability: likelihood that a community will suffer, in terms of fatalities and physical damage
Risk: product of vulnerability and hazard; risk = vulnerability X hazard
Our dependence on technology makes us vulnerable; domino effect when one system goes out
Poorer countries are less equipped to deal with natural disasters and thus sustain more fatalities
PCP: Canada’s emergency management
o Response: immediately after emergency
o Recovery: ”back to normal
o Mitigation: reduce risk
o Preparedness: proactive plans for disasters
Chapter 2
Energy sources that make Earth an active body:
o Earth’s energy: release of energy causes continents to slide creating
mountains/plateaus
o Gravity: force of attraction; mass of earth affects ice/rock causing avalanches/landslides
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Document Summary

A natural disaster is a natural occurrence in which a large amount of energy is released in a short amount of time, and causes loss of life (human or otherwise) or damage to property/economic losses. Natural disasters are often triggered when society ignores hazardous conditions in nature. Deadliest natural hazards are hurricanes and earthquakes (table 1. 2: others: floods (cause landslides), volcanic eruptions (landslides) Measuring hazards: disaster frequency: number of occurrences in a given length of time, return period: length of time between similar events (inverse of frequency, magnitude: amount of energy fuelling a natural event. Figure 1. 1 graph: smaller energy releases all the time, bigger energy releases . Figure 1. 2: geological disasters: earthquakes, volcanoes, mass movements, weather disasters: heat waves, drought, wildfires flood, storms cause of most. Canadian natural disasters - drought: changing weather patterns may increase the frequency of natural disasters. More densely populated places have more fatalities in a natural disaster than less populated.

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