Day for Natural Disaster Reduction
13th October 2020
The closer we creep towards the 1.5°C average global temperature rise above pre-industrial levels the more severe and more frequent natural disasters are predicted to become.
We are noticing the higher frequency and severity of natural disasters already, from the extensive Australian bushfires to the devastating wildfires in the Amazon, California and Canada, etc.
Major hurricanes are by far the world’s costliest natural weather disasters, in some cases causing well over $100 billion in damage. There’s now evidence that the unnatural effects of human-caused global warming are already making hurricanes stronger and more destructive. The latest research shows the trend is likely to continue as long as the climate continues to warm.
How does a hurricane form?
Whether called hurricanes in the Atlantic Ocean, typhoons in the western Pacific Ocean, or cyclones in the Indian Ocean, strong tropical cyclones are an example of nature’s fiercest fury.
The criteria that conspire to form tropical cyclones are rather simple. It all starts with a small atmospheric disturbance located in or near a tropical ocean. If water temperatures are warm enough, generally more than 80 degrees Fahrenheit, and atmospheric conditions are supportive with moisture and uniform winds, a tropical system can evolve. In the Atlantic the system first becomes a tropical depression. As it gets stronger the system graduates to a tropical storm and then finally, when winds rise over 74 mph, it is termed a hurricane.
Not to mention the current global pandemic 'COVID-19' virus outbreaks are predicted to become more and more common as a result of climate change. There is also islands being slowly submerged by rising sea levels creating the first 'climate refugees' as you read this.
Watch the story of the Marshall Islands and how its inhabitants are being forced off their home land by the rising ocean.
How do we reduce natural disasters?
We can start by practicing more sustainable living and reducing our own contribution to the global temperature rise, this is the most direct way we can all take action on climate change.
We can plant more trees to help sequester the carbon from our atmosphere, specifically mangroves which can sequester 4 times more carbon then the same area of rainforest while also providing an ecosystem and a barrier for any potential cyclones or typhoons.
We can prevent further deforestation from occurring by supporting organisations such as Rainforest 4 Foundation & The Wilderness Society. We can also prevent deforestation by eating less meat, not supporting palm oil products, using more recycled or alternative materials, using less paper, recycling cardboard/paper, buying only sustainable wood products, burning less wood for heating. We can sign the petition to tell the Australian government to stop deforestation!
Sustainable agriculture is another way we can sequester carbon from our atmosphere while also increasing the health of the soil, bringing rain and making better use of it, encouraging biodiversity and making the land more resilient to a changing climate all while sustaining the nation in a much healthier way.
If you haven't watched the inspirational film already please watch: Kiss the Ground