Sunday, May 17, 2009

World disaster map

If a newly released UN study that compares different types of natural disasters against population and economic trends is any indicator, India is the global epicenter of risk of death from such disasters. And within the country too, its Himalayan frontiers look especially vulnerable.

The report also finds that a prime factor contributing to increased vulnerability is urbanization, with about one billion people already crammed into what are euphemistically called "informal" settlements in and around cities, better known as slums, and 25 million more moving in each year. These communities are usually built on steep slopes, floodplains or other vulnerable spots.

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