To what extent can planning and preparedness mitigate the effects of volcanic hazards

Topics: Volcano, Mount Vesuvius, Caldera Pages: 2 (855 words) Published: April 28, 2015
To what extent can planning and preparedness mitigate the effects of volcanic hazards? A hazard is a situation that poses a level of threat to life, health, property, or environment. There is a very big difference that helps prepare for a volcanic hazard and that is whether you are in a MEDC or a LEDC. In a MEDC monitoring volcanic zones and potential hazards is an option many LEDC’s don’t have. In Italy at Mt Etna they have Geochemical monitoring programs currently run by INGV which focus on the analysis of temporal changes, chemical changes and seismic activity. This option open to the Italians is not an option for LEDC who don’t have the wealth or public education to set up these stations. An example of an LEDC with no planning and prevention plans is Mount Pinatubo- Philippines, Its last eruption in 1991 was completely unplanned for. Mt Etna has a history of fairly frequent eruptions, all of which came with impacts on the surrounding area. Socially the town of Zafferana Etnea was threatened by the largest volume of lava in hundreds of years, this can also be seen as an economic impact. In 2002 a huge column of ash was thrown up from the biggest eruption in recent years and was deposited as far away as Libya. Seismic activity associated with these eruptions caused the eastern flanks of the volcano to slip by 2m, causing structural damage to many houses. Lava flows completely destroyed the tourist station at piano Provenzana and part of the tourist station at Rifugio Sapienza. The airport at Catania was forced to close as the runways were covered in ash. The winter tourist industry was affected as visitors stayed away due to safety concerns. It is arguable however that these impacts would have been much worse if the area wasn’t already prepared for an eruption. To protect themselves from the hazards of an eruption the government and locals used methods of protection and prediction to aid them for future eruptions. To protect themselves in 1669 the town’s...
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