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Tag Archives: risk reduction

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Is Canada benefiting for LIRNEasia’s disaster risk reduction research?

In 2004 January I asked my friend, Pete Anderson, to take a risk and come to Sri Lanka to participate in the expert forum we had convened on the 26th of January to develop policy recommendations for effective early warning. At that moment I did not have a budget line to pay out of, but […]

Talk on tsunami in January 2005: What Happened in Sri Lanka? And why it won’t be so bad next time

Nine and a half years ago, in the immediate aftermath of the tsunami, I was asked to speak on the role of ICTs in disaster management at the PTC conference in Honolulu. The title says it all: Why it won’t be so bad next time. It was an emotional time and I half-wondered whether I […]

Consolidating and applying the knowledge generated since 2004 tsunami

This is disaster risk reduction week in Sri Lanka. Nothing official, but we decided some time back that tsunami commemoration is better done in the middle of the year, than in the last week of December when everything, including our brains, shuts down. I learned this from my children’s schools where they celebrate half-birthdays for […]

Infrasound: A particular form of damage from meteor hits

What we noticed in the aftermath of the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami was the randomness of the damage. Houses that were right next to each other were affected differently: one destroyed another untouched. This was supposed to be caused by the complex interaction of the wave and the topography of the coast. In the case […]

Roaming as a disaster response

A significant number of base stations (around 20% or lower) in the Hurricane Sandy affected areas are supposed to have gone down, mainly due to electricity problems. I am sure the systems here in South Asia are a lot more robust in this aspect because our baseline expectations of the reliability of the electricity networks […]

Making emergency communication effective: 3rd LIRNEasia Disaster Risk Reduction Lecture

The 3rd LIRNEasia Disaster Risk Reduction Lecture will be held on 19 June 2012, Tuesday at 1500 hrs at the Sri Lanka Foundation Institute, 100 Independence Square, Colombo 7. The main talk by LIRNEasia Senior Research Fellow Nuwan Waidyanatha on “making emergency communication effective” will complement the opening presentation by the Director General of the […]

Tsunami risk reduction in the age of twitter

A few days back, on April 11th 2012, a powerful earthquake occurred not too far from Aceh. Naturally, fears of a tsunami were uppermost in people’s minds. It’s been some time since we at LIRNEasia did funded disaster-related research, but within minutes, I was receiving requests for analysis on the lines of the post-mortems we’ve […]

Disaster risk reduction in the age of Twitter: First reflections on a tweeted tsunami

An earthquake happened. Minor tsunamis occurred with no loss of life. The story was in the warnings and responses. My first (and obviously imperfect) reflections are in LBO. In the age of social media, people will learn of distant hazards independently of government. What government must focus on is helping them respond on the most […]

Tsunami risk reduction: Problems with projections

How does one plan for 97 feet high tsunami? The scale of the possible tsunami trumps all previous notions of the risks facing the town. Deadly tsunamis have been rare here; the last few waves to reach Kuroshio, including one in 1946, did little damage. Town officials are not entirely blind to the risks of […]

Cyclone Thane: Early warning and preparedness saves lives

We complain every time early warning is not given or false warnings/evacuation orders are issued. But praise must be given when right action is taken and lives are saved. Indian authorities are to be praised. Witnesses in Chennai and Pondicherry said trees had been toppled, there had been power outages throughout the night and disruption […]

Human, not natural, disasters

Smith Dharmasaroja is on the ball, again. He was right in telling Thais to get ready for a tsunami, and he’s right in telling them they have caused the conditions for the floods. Floods are the biggest problem for most Asian countries. Attention must be paid. As some of Thailand’s worst flooding in half a […]

A recent talk on what can be learned from the Japanese tsunami experience

I have been writing about the lessons that can and should be learned from the Japanese experience with the devastating local tsunami which in addition to its normal destruction, also triggered the failure of the nuclear stations. Those writings were intended for general Asian audiences, rather than any particular country. In the slideset here, I […]

Sympathies to the victims of the 2011 Pacific Ocean tsunami

We are saddened by the multiple tragedies of the earthquake, dam break, nuclear station problem, local tsunami and teletsunami. We offer our condolences to the victims and our admiration and encouragement to the brave men and women doing the hard work of providing succor to the survivors. More concretely, we are working on a media […]

Tsunami coverage that includes mentions of LIRNEasia

The pictures that keep coming up on the right-hand side of the blog are for the most part those of the aftermath of the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami. So we are not allowed to forget. Not that we want to. But anyway, Newsweek was the first to publish something with a quote from LIRNEasia. I […]

Dams and earthquakes

In our work on dam safety, we found there was widespread fear about the big dams of the Mahaveli scheme causing geological instability in the central hills.  The following report on the possibility that the weight of water from a Sichuan Province dam caused last year’s earthquake, will fuel those fears. Nearly nine months after […]

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