Caribbean Studies

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Natural disasters are defined as natural catastrophes which cause great damage by disrupting the functioning of a society. Natural disasters are inevitable and ubiquitous worldwide. Within the Caribbean, three main natural disasters are hurricanes, earthquakes, floods. The great damages caused by natural disasters may be divided into two categories: social and economic and environmental. However, this essay will address the social and economic impact of these natural disasters on the Caribbean and how to reduce the effects of these disasters. In regards to the essay, Hurricanes (with special emphasis being placed on Hurricane Gilbert) and floods as well as two Caribbean territories, Jamaica and Haiti will be utilized respectively. The following points will be discussed in terms of hurricane: loss of lives and homelessness, disruption of communities, employment (social impact) process of money being diverted into relief activities and reconstruction, Gross Domestic Product (economic impacts). Conversely points that will be discussed for flooding are: food shortage and the contamination of water, loss of homes (social impacts) and the overall impact on the economy as well as assistance received from outsiders (economic impacts). A hurricane is a type of tropical cyclone, which is generally formed in the tropics. This tropical cyclone is accompanied by thunderstorms, heavy rainfall, flooding and strong winds. The economic and social consequences of this phenomenon are severe, especially in less developed Caribbean countries, Haiti for example. A hurricane can cause major loss of lives and also homelessness. Hurricane Gilbert struck the Caribbean and the Gulf Coast of Mexico in 1988, causing comprehensive damage in Jamaica, Haiti, Guatemala, Honduras, Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, and Nicaragua. Approximately 21 lives were lossed in Jamaica during this hurricane, and it left over 400 people homeless. Crops were destroyed; livestock farmers were left to dispose...
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