Asia and the Pacific is the most disaster-prone region in the world. Geologically, the region is characterized by active tectonic plate movements in the Pacific and Indian Oceans, which have been the source of major earthquakes and tsunamis. The Indian and Pacific Oceans also regularly generate tropical cyclones and typhoons. The region is home to young mountain ranges which are especially prone to earthquakes, landslides, flash floods, avalanches and Glacial Lake Outburst Floods (GLOFs). Geographically it is a region of physical diversity with islands, mountains, extensive coastlines, forests, deltaic plains and deserts. The weather and climate systems are driven primarily by monsoon variability and snow cover dynamics, which both contribute to the frequency and severity of floods and drought. Several major rivers flow through the region, often across several national borders, and a large portion of the population lives in the fertile valleys of these rivers.
This paper provides a review of natural disasters and their impacts in Asia and the Pacific by disaster type, subregion and level of development. The first section looks at the occurrence of natural disaster events. This is followed by an analysis of fatalities and economic loss in sections two and three respectively. The short-term consequences of natural disasters on the economy are also mentioned. The final section briefly discusses aspects regarding exposure and vulnerability of countries in Asia and the Pacific.
information pertaining to earth sciences. Examples: geophysical features and processes, geology, minerals, sciences dealing with the composition, structure and origin of the earth s rocks, risks of earthquakes, volcanic activity, landslides, gravity information, soils, permafrost, hydrogeology, erosion
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