View Full Version : Asia at risk of era of mega-disasters: report

12-26-2008, 08:15 AM
The Asia-Pacific faces an era of large-scale natural disasters which could kill up to one million people at a time, with Indonesia, the Philippines and China most at risk, according to an Australian report.

The Herald said the Australian scientists had analysed the likelihood of earthquakes, cyclones, tsunamis and volcanoes occurring in the region and then estimated the likely casualty toll.

The study found that cities in the Himalayan belt, China, Indonesia and the Philippines could experience earthquakes where the death toll could top one million.

Indonesia and the Philippines were was also at risk of volcanoes which could affect hundreds of thousands of people while a low-lying country like Bangladesh could be ravaged by tsunamis, floods and cyclones.

The study, part of an assessment by Australia and Indonesia on humanitarian crises, said catastrophes which killed more than 10,000 people were likely to occur several times each decade and there was the potential for events to affect more than one million people.

The paper said that rising populations, climate change and food shortages could exacerbate natural events.

Geoscience Australia scientist Alanna Simpson said the analysis looked at the data of natural events from the past 400 years to predict the likelihood of future events.
2008 AFP

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