Today in disaster resilience (24 January 2020)


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

Recent emergencies/disaster

Cyclone Tino: Evacuation centres open in Fiji as storm drives across Pacific

Zimbabwe – Floods Cause Havoc in Matabeleland North

Fiji – Flash Floods From Tropical Cyclone “Tino” Leave 2 Dead

Brazil – 6 Dead After Flash Floods and Landslides in Espirito Santo

Bolivia – 6 Dead as Severe Weather Triggers Floods and Landslides

Papua New Guinea – Hundreds Displaced After Floods in Eastern Highlands Province

Dust storms turn central NSW towns dark

Flooding, landslides kill six in Brazil

Canberra hailstorm prompts record call out for help to ACT SES

Indonesia – 7 Dead After Floods Cause Bridge to Collapse in Bengkulu Province

Guatemala – Over 500 Evacuated After Floods in Alta Verapaz and Izabal

Mozambique – Floods Leave 28 Dead, 58,000 Affected, Says UN

Indonesia – Heavy Rain Triggers Flooding in Central Java and West Sumatra

Spain – Storm Surge From Storm Gloria Reaches 3km Inland

Argentina – Evacuations After Floods in Tucumán Province

Madagascar – Floods and Landslides Leave 6 Dead, More Severe Weather Forecast

Widespread flooding continues in Southern Africa, significantly affecting crops and livestock

Lava now visible at White Island, elevated state of unrest continues, New Zealand

Storm Gloria floods major river delta in eastern Spain

Volcanic activity worldwide 23 Jan 2020: Klyuchevskoy volcano, Popocatépetl, Dukono, Reventador

Everything you need to know as the China coronavirus spreads

Peru – Homes Damaged After Heavy Rain Triggers Floods and Landslides in Arequipa

Major Chinese city goes into lockdown as new virus death toll rises to at least 17 – Wuhan, Hubei


Extreme Weather and Climate Change

David Attenborough calls Australia’s bushfires ‘the moment of crisis’ to address climate change

The climate factors contributing to Australia’s bushfires are strikingly similar to those at play in California

Fiji calls for urgent action on climate crisis as second cyclone hits in three weeks

From “wet bulb” heat waves that create deadly humidity to cascading economic effects of sea level rise, a new report catalogs some of the unanticipated consequences of runaway global warming

Climate risk and response: Physical hazards and socioeconomic impacts

The misallocation of climate research funding

Annual CEO survey found 65% of bosses were worried about climate, even before the bushfire crisis peaked

Experts say judgment is ‘tipping point’ that opens the door to climate crisis claims for protection

Why we can no longer ignore consecutive disasters

RBA told to ‘mobilise all forces’ to save the economy from climate change

This is what climate change looks like

Emissions of potent greenhouse gas have grown, contradicting reports of huge reductions

Could Australia’s bushfire disaster alter the conversation on climate change?

Bushfires have effectively doubled Australia’s annual greenhouse gas output

Projected Changes to Extreme Runoff and Precipitation Events From a Downscaled Simulation Over the Western United States

Landmark climate migration decision

Funding to build seawalls in the Torres Strait, amidst calls for climate change action

Weather shows evidence of climate change every single day since 2012

Rising temperatures put more US workers at risk of dying from heat

The ‘Doomsday Clock’ has jumped closer to midnight than ever as nuclear weapons and climate disasters turn the world into a ‘pressure cooker

Climate change-driven sea-level rise could trigger mass migration of Americans to inland cities, finds new AI study

Modeling migration patterns in the USA under sea level rise


Disaster risk reduction

Treat coastal erosion as a natural catastrophe, UK ministers urged

Normalised insurance losses from Australian natural disasters: 1966–2017

Applicability of Hydrological Models for Flash Flood Simulation in Small Catchments of Hilly Area in China

Scientists fear major volcanic eruption in the Philippines

Study finds flooding damage to levees is cumulative—and often invisible

Boston Pushes Flood Resilience with New Design Guidelines

Has NSW seen more than twice the amount of prescribed burning this decade compared with the last?

What Controls How Quickly Faults Heal?

Six of the top 10 costliest disasters of 2019 were flood

On the Need for Prospective Disaster Survey Panels

Floods could cost Solihull £6.4m without prevention, engineers warn

The Texas General Land Office announced over the weekend it was giving the city $1.3 million to buy homes and allow those residents to move to an area that doesn’t flood as often

Flooding risks could devalue Florida real estate

Intensification of short-duration rainfall extremes and implications for flash flood risks

InSAR shows massive ground deformation around the erupting Taal Volcano

Vesuvius eruption baked some people to death—and turned one brain to glass

Evidence to explain behavior of slow earthquakes

As Climate Risks Worsen, U.S. Flood Buyouts Fail to Meet the Need

In an ideal world we would have river discharge measurements for every river spanning many decades and updated in real time. We all know this is very far from reality with severe gaps in the global observing network

Wildfire risk can be reduced with agroforestry

Lessons from California fires: Investing in resilience is key

Ireland: The details of the flood risk and proposed feasible measures for each of the 300 studied communities is set out in 29 Flood Risk Management Plans

Risk assessment for areas prone to flooding and subsidence: a case study from Bergen, Western Norway


Emergency management

Parts of the NSW are reopening for business just weeks after bushfires ravaged local lives – and livelihoods. Businesses are desperate for people to return

Army chief warns continued disaster relief efforts will cost them readiness

How long is recovery?

Managed retreat presents a dilemma for at-risk communities: the countervailing imperatives of moving out of harm’s way versus retaining ties to community and place

Rain has helped slow Australia’s fires, but it’s far from a knockout blow

Update and Interim Guidance on Outbreak of 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) in Wuhan, China

Australia fires: What’s being done to fight the flames?

Three Americans killed in plane crash while fighting Australia’s wildfires

45 million people across Southern Africa face hunger following natural disasters and economic disarray


Disaster education, communications and engagement

Remote sensing analyses on Twitter. Part 1: floods

Remote sensing analyses on Twitter. Part 2: landslides

A glossary providing the vocabulary necessary to understand the modern glacier environment

National Park Service’s $1.2M project preserving Johnstown Flood history

What to do in a flood

Campaign to show impact of flooding on mental health launched

Ireland’s national flood information portal, providing location specific access to flood risk and flood management information

Flood Resilience Measurement for Communities: how to create community buy-in


Psychology and Disasters

A familiar place among the chaos: how schools can help students cope after the bushfires

Flooding increases the chance of depression by 50%

Impacts of Wildfire on Children


Sociology and disasters

Neighborhood Ties Reduced Depressive Symptoms in Older Disaster Survivors: Iwanuma Study, a Natural Experiment

Risk of natural hazards and the coping capacity of the South African community in Auckland


Published by


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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