Today in disaster resilience (22 November 2019)


Please find below links to recent news about some aspects of disaster resilience…

Recent emergencies/disaster

Exceptional high tide inundates Venice for third time in a week, as Italy suffers widespread flooding

Huge hailstones batter Queensland, causing significant damage to cars and homes, Australia

Flooding chaos in northern England to continue until Tuesday

Philippines – Houses Destroyed, Thousands Evacuate After Rain From Storm ‘Kalmaegi’ (Ramon)

Brazil – 1 Dead, Dozens Homeless After Floods in Espírito Santo

Colombia – More Flooding Hits Antioquia Department

Panama – Floods Damage Over 100 Homes in Central Provinces

Nigeria – Worst Flooding in 7 Years in Borno and Adamawa, Says UN

Austria – Heavy Rain Triggers Deadly Landslides and Floods in South

DR Congo – Thousands Hit by Floods in Haut-Uélé and Tshopo

UK – 100 Rescued After Floods Hit Central and Eastern Areas of England

Sydney blanketed in dense bushfire smoke amid ‘severe’ fire danger

Over 10 000 homes destroyed, 57 000 affected as catastrophic floods hit Central African Republic

Powerful tornado hits Grosseto, causing significant damage, Italy

Chad – Over 200,000 Hit by Floods Says UN

Colombia – Thousands Affected After Rivers Overflow in Santander Department

Italy – More Severe Weather as Rivers Overflow in Emilia-Romagna and Tuscany

Catastrophic bushfire conditions in Australia, over a dozen temperature records smashed

Volcanic activity worldwide 21 Nov 2019: Stromboli volcano, Fuego, Klyuchevskoy, Popocatépetl


Extreme Weather and Climate Change

Dr Tom Beer’s pioneering 1980s research into bushfires and climate change has, to his dismay, proved all too accurate

Bangladesh declares climate change a “planetary emergency”

Flood, fire and plague: climate change blamed for current disasters

Future rainfall in UK uplands heavier than present climate predictions, study suggests

Sea-level rise and fear for Lagos

Climate Whiplash: Wild Swings in Extreme Weather Are on the Rise

Venice Flooding Reveals A Real Hoax About Climate Change – Framing It As “Either/Or”

In Bosnia and Herzegovina streamlined and coordinated climate action is reducing some of the devastating effects of climate change

We’ll be measuring sea level rise in feet, not inches

Storm surges to get bigger in south, smaller in north

Climate change may be divisive, but that doesn’t mean you should avoid it. Here’s how to approach the topic effectively

Painfully slow hurricanes, deadly heat, and cities without water: What the climate crisis will look like in the next 10 years, according to experts

Sea-Level Rise: West Africa Is Sinking

Understanding coastal sea level change: products available

Istanbul heatwave shows need for urgent climate action – Greenpeace

The staggering loss of the Arctic Ocean’s oldest sea ice shown in time-lapse

Retreat of the Columbia Glacier

Why coastal floods are becoming more frequent as seas rise

The serious sea level threat to Macau

October 2019: Earth’s Second Warmest October on Record

Climate impacts ‘to cost world $7.9 trillion’ by 2050

The world’s climate goals are not sufficient. They are also unlikely to be met

UK is one of the most vulnerable countries in the world to extreme heatwaves caused by climate change

Massive Mildura dust storm leaves Victorian town ‘unliveable’ amid 40C heat

Permafrost Becoming a Carbon Source Instead of a Sink

Warning signs of climate change

The 2019 report of The Lancet Countdown on health and climate change

Melting glaciers and flooding wetlands

‘Maybe It Will Destroy Everything’: Pakistan’s Melting Glaciers Cause Alarm

We say we want climate action, but we still won’t vote for it


Disaster risk reduction

New book – ‘Disaster Upon Disaster: Exploring the Gap Between Knowledge, Policy and Practice’

New photogrammetry technique from the Army Corps of Engineers can make accurate 3D maps from ordinary aerial footage in just minutes

Cascading disasters are causing extreme weather to pack an even bigger punch

Lokeberg: an interesting quick clay slide triggered by piling in Western Sweden

Indigenous leaders say Australia’s bushfire crisis shows approach to land management failing

NZ’s wildfire future: which regions are most at risk?

Mumbai: BMC officers to visit Japan for lessons in flood control

USA: Community wildfire prevention & mitigation report

Range-dependent thresholds for global flood early warning

Iowa Mitigation Program Leads to $1.4 Billion in Flood Prevention Projects

In Flood-Prone South Carolina, Nature-Based Solutions Could Reduce Risk

Reduced fuel loads do little for bushfire mitigation under extreme fire weather and in times of drought

Flood-hit farmers in spat with George Monbiot about dredging

Public authorities sit on a vast wealth of social, economic and demographic data that should be fully integrated with flood risk management decision-making, and regularly updated

Subsidised cyclone insurance for northern Australia back on agenda

In the path of disaster: The big causes of bushfires that most of us are missing

Typhoons and floods wreak havoc on Japan’s big three insurers

Analysis Of The South Yorkshire Floods

International satellites supporting disaster management

Putting homes in high-risk areas is asking too much of firefighters

A massive experiment in Taiwan aims to reveal landslides’ surprising effect on the climate

Reducing wildfire risk is a collective effort

U.S. announces $30 million to bolster coasts from flooding, rising seas

Bushfire crisis costing Queensland and northern NSW millions

Massive tsunami as high as 15 m (49 feet) hit Oman 1 000 years ago, research finds

Managing Flood Water for Aquifer Recharge: Economic Considerations for Policy

Over the past few decades, development practice in England has led to more than 300,000 homes being built in high flood risk areas


Emergency management

Australia’s bushfire politics: the parties prevaricate while the country burns

How do you fight extreme wildfires?

When fire came to Sydney’s north shore

Sirens, texts, even church bells. California wildfire alerts and evacuations still ad hoc

Cyclone early warning system for Pacific goes live

Why flooding is still so difficult to predict and prepare for

‘Move out tonight’: First Code Red since 2010 issued for parts of Victoria

A scramble for safety in flooded South Sudan town

Public urged to be eyes and ears of police for potential firebugs

Nigeria: Tens of thousands of people stranded by floods in north-east

‘Hazardous’ air quality from bushfire smoke triggers spike in hospital admissions

How Australia’s bushfires spread: mapping the NSW and Queensland fires

Wasatch Fault Scenario

Change Coming to Flash Flood Warnings


Disaster education, communications and engagement

Volcano video game

These sixth-graders learned what it’s like to handle emergency operations during a storm

Communication During Disaster Recovery

Understanding fire weather

Flooding Disasters in an Era of Extreme Weather

Non-mobile phone users: What hinders their access?

Only 23% of UK people checked flood risk before moving into their current home

Flood losses are substantially reduced when awareness-raising attitudes are promoted through inclusive, participatory approaches in the community


Psychology and Disasters

The dread and worry keeping young Australians up at night

Trauma of Yorkshire floods will have ‘profound effect’ on victim’s mental health, says charity CEO

Domestic violence will spike in the bushfire aftermath, and governments can no longer ignore it

This is what it’s really like to be the spouse of a first responder

Multiple flood events erode neighborhood spirit, study finds

Mental health at risk as California wildfire threat grows


Sociology and disasters

Indigenous peoples and people of color are disproportionately affected by our global climate crisis

Somalia: Floods in Somalia increase vulnerability of population

Study the effects of earthquakes, floods and other natural hazards with sensitivity to ethical dilemmas and power imbalances

Weather and war: How climate shocks are compounding Somalia’s problems


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I am a Principal at Water Technology Pty Ltd, an Australian-based coastal, environment and natural hazards company - see I specialise in the community aspects of disaster risk reduction and emergency management. Samples of my research and projects can be accessed at Check out my latest book 'Disaster Education, Communication and Engagement' at I am also a published fiction writer specialising in short stories and poems - see

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