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Geology Times Issue 37,December, 2013

The

Disaster Issue

World’s Most Disaster Prone Cities pg. 5

Is Your Home Disater Proof? Our Best Guide to Keep Your Family Safe pg. 12 The Real Story Behind the Super Storm Sandy pg. 14

$3.95


Geology Times• Disaster Issue • Issue #37 • December, 2013

World’s Most

Disaster

Prone Cities

1. New York, New York More than 8 million people live the 305 square miles across four of NYC’s five boroughs. With 578 miles of mainland New York a coastline, this city is destined for a catastrophic disaster. As global climate warms, New York City is experiences more damaging hurricanes than ever before. A hurricane is an intense tropical weather system of strong thunderstorms with a well-defined surface circulation and a minimum sustained wind speed of 74 mph. The most recent storm to hit New York, Hurricane Sandy, was a category 1 storm when it hit land and caused

massive flooding and damage. New York City is located at small inlet between New Jersey and Long Island, causing a bottleneck for hurricanes to pass directly into the heart of the city. Due to the new geological landscape and NYC geography, scientists predict New York City could one day be hit by a category three and possibly four storm. Characterized by complete structural failure and 130-156 mph winds, a category 4 storm would devastate the Empire State’s most brilliant city. Authorities predict JFK airport would be under 19 feet of water, the subways

2. Amsterdam, Netherlands More than 8 million people live the 305 square miles across four of NYC’s five boroughs. With 578 miles of mainland New York a coastline, this city is destined for a catastrophic disaster. As global climate warms, New York City is experiences more damaging hurricanes than ever before. A hurricane is an intense tropical weather system of strong thunderstorms

with a well-defined surface circulation and a minimum sustained wind speed of 74 mph. The most recent storm to hit New York, Hurricane Sandy, was a category 1 storm when it hit land and caused massive flooding and damage. New York City is located at small inlet between New Jersey and Long Island, causing a bottleneck for hurricanes to pass

would flood in less than 40 minutes, and a 15-foot wall of water could hit 3 of the 4 boroughs. The damage from a category four storm in NYC would cost four times as much as clean up from Katrina. The city has planned to invest well over 100 million dollars a year in storm protections, like raised subway vents and porous pavement, but the ominous future before New York is more destructive than ever.

directly into the heart of the city. Due to the new geological landscape and NYC geography, scientists predict New York City could one day be hit by a category three and possibly four storm. Characterized by complete structural failure and 130-156 mph winds, a category 4 storm would devastate the Empire State’s most brilliant city.


Geology Times• Disaster Issue • Issue #37 • December, 2013

Authorities predict JFK airport would be under 19 feet of water, the subways would flood in less than 40 minutes, and a 15-foot wall of water could hit 3 of the 4 boroughs. The damage from a category four

storm in NYC would cost four times as much as clean up from Katrina. The city has planned to invest well over 100 million dollars a year in storm protections, like raised subway vents and porous pavement,

but the ominous future before New York is more destructive than ever.

3. Seattle, Washington Seattle Washington is a sitting duck for all things natural disaster. Located directly on a massive fault line, Seattle is prone to massive earthquakes. As if that wasn’t disastrous enough, the city is located directly downstream from Mount Rainer, one of the most dangerous active volcanoes on Earth. Mount Rainer last erupted around 150 years ago. The Seattle area was drowned in a massive mudflow caused by the eruption. This deadly flow is called a lahar—a devastating mix of mud, ice, and any debris it picks up. The lahar travels quickly, at speeds as fast as a

moving car, destroying anything in its path. The lahar created from Mount Rainer’s last eruption was so large it filled many valleys that now give home to over 10,000 people. The deadly volcano has received little attention despite its power—little to no research has been conducted on it in the past two decades. The last devastating eruption was around 5,000 years ago. Called the Osceola Mudflow—what was once sea became over 200 square miles of land in a matter of hours. The lahar traveled down the White River drainage system and destroyed parts of Puget Lowland, which are now

It was not hard to see why New Zealand is doomed for massive natural disasters. Wellington, the capital of New Zealand, is home to 400,000 people and is in danger of massive tsunamis triggered by earthquakes. The last tsunami, which hit the country in 1946, left an ominous message for residents, when the massive wave’s roar could be heard 15 miles away.

In 1984, record-setting rainfalls caused massive flooding that forced thousands of people to evacuate, leaving many without homes for several months. Located on a fault line, New Zealand is doomed to face another, much larger tsunami. Authorities warn that a 115-foot tsunami is possible to hit the coast of the Northern Island, devastating most of the

4. Wellington, New Zealand

heavily populated. The most dangerous part of the lahar is an eruption is not necessary to create one. A massive lahar damaging enough to kill thousands of people could be created by rock collapse or magma-water interaction. In the event of an eruption, not only would a 600 foot tall lahar devastate everything in its path towards Seattle, but eruptions could cause show and ice to melt, producing currents of melt water that pick up debris, making Seattle one of the most geological doomed cities.

area. In addition to the tsunami threats, several volcanoes with potential to throw ash towards heavily populated cities threaten the northern region of the country. In the event of these massive natural disasters, the only safeguard for residents is evacuation, which would not be possible for a large part of the population due to the construction of


World’s Most

Disaster

Prone Cities continued... 4. Wellington, New Zealand the country. Located near the cost airports, marinas, and the local stadium would all be destroyed in the event of a serious natural disaster. Although the country has invested in national warning

systems, the future of New Zealand remains unclear in the event of a natural disaster.

Destruction of Hurricane Sandy on the jersey shore, october, 2012. The category 3 storm.

flooding in the streets of amsterdam. many residents call the canals home, leaving them vulnerable to the effects of natural disasters.

New dam systems in rotterdam in an effort to save the area from flooding and rising water levels.


Geology Times• Disaster Issue • Issue #37 • December, 2013

The christchurch eartquake in new zealand killed 65 people. the 6.3 magnitude earthquake devasted christchurch, displacing thousands of people.

Mount rainier is located just 54 miless southeast of seattle. An explosion or a lahar would destory all residents that did not evacuate.

Damage in the aftermath of the christchurch earthquake.


Geology Times• Disaster Issue • Issue #37 • December, 2013

Is Your Househ Our best tips to prepare any type of living arrangment

The number one safeguard from natural disasters is being prepared. Having certain tools, habits, and plans of action prepared and practice in the time of a natural emergency is the difference between life and death. Here are our best tips for any kind of living space. Every Prepper knows the difference between life and death is a natural disaster prepardness kit. No matter your living arrangement, every household needs a preparedness kit. Kept in one place and regularly maintained, here are our vital items for every kit: • First aid kit (bandages, • Medicine dripper ointments, tweezers, • Waterproof tarps medicines) • Duct tape • Solar heat blankets • Candles • Ax • Matches • Sledge Hammer • Food • Sturdy and season appropriate • Water clothes • Brightly colored • Work gloves cloth for rescue • Canteens • Battery operated lights • Bleach • Radio Aprtments can be a blessing or a curse in the event of a natural diaster. Some apartments, built of solid concrete and brick will stand strongest during a natural diaster. However, if your apartment is newly constructed and made out of materials like blah, evacuate as soon as possible. To prepare your apartment in the event of a natural disaster: • Tape all window panes from corner to corner, then tape • This water can be purified with chlorine bleach—use sheets or blankets over them to prevent shards of glass eyedropper—put 2 drops of bleach per 1 quart of water. flying into the room Allow to sit for 30 minutes before drinking • Remove all objects from the walls • In the event of a disaster you will need heavy clothes and • Under no circumstances should you look out your windows winter sleeping bags to stay warm • Gather supplies and place on a visible clearly accessible • Petroleum lamps can provide heat and light place, like a table • Cover windows with blankets and insulate pace between the • In the event of a natural disaster in an urban setting, fresh blankets with newspaper to keep the cold out water will be the number on concern. A prepared person • In all living spaces, but especially urban ones, looting will always has at least 10 gallons of water stored at all be a problem in the event of a serious natural disaster times • If you have the money, invest in a secure front door now • As soon as word of disaster is released, fill every watertight • During the aftermath of a disaster, put heavy furniture in container with water front of the door especially if on a ground floor apartment • Water in the tub can be used for flushing toilets or bathing, • Make sure your stashes of supplies are kept in since the power will inevitably be out for a sustained period inconspicuous places—never share your prepping with of time others. People will turn on each other in the even of a • Only use water for this purpose if you have multiple tubs. If serious natural disaster not, dedicate that space to drinking water • Stay inside and don’t stand out • Valuable tools like waterBob is a watertight bag that fits into • Put brightly colored cloth on window pane to signal relief you tubs that holds 100 gallons of water are there, and sit tight


old Prepared?

Geology Times• Disaster Issue • Issue #37 • December, 2013

If you own a farm, natural diasters are not only immediately dengerous, but pose a threat to destory the buisness you’ve built. Here are some steps to combat the devastation toll natural hazards can have on your family, farm, and buisness. • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Be sure all animals are current on vaccinations All animals should have identification Take a photo and keep with medical records Brand or put colors on all animals Include proof of ownership in these records If you are in a sheltered place and can bring animals indoors, do so For pets, putting them in a carrier or cage could soothe their anxiety For livestock, put them in a sheltered place with ample food and water Do not, under any circumstances, tie animals to anything, preventing them from running If you evacuate and can take your animals with you do so, but be sure to bring ample food and water because supply will be unknown If your family is in danger, leave the animals Leave them untied with food and water for 5 days Leave faucets dripping as a water source for pets Leave notice on front door with location and type of animal and your contact information for rescue staff Draw up farm map and inventory

• Know what your insurance protects before a disaster occurs • Stockpile supplies for farm now • Make plan with suppliers, customers, and staff for natural disaster • Develop a backup schedule for all computer files • After disaster, survey damage • Corn can last up to 12 hours submerged in water of 70 degrees • Soy beans last 48-96 hours in cooler waters • Monitor both crops and livestock for disease

Mobile homes have great advantages during a natural diaster. Unlike everyone else, you have the ability to make everything you own mobile in a matter of seconds. Your family is used to roughing it and being resourceful, and you know the roads better than anyone. However, prepardness for mobil home owneress is vital. Without the protection of walls and the support of nieghbors, prepping will make all the difference in the event of a natural disaster. To keep your mobile hom prepared: • Invest in alternative power • Install a 4 level water filter to your RV • Keep water in your tank at all times • Fishing poles, nets, and other outdoor equipment • Have a store of non-perishable food • Keep your truck gas tank full • Keep your propane canisters full • Keep cash on hand • Bulk up on your medicine supplies • During a disaster try to park RV as far from trees, mountains, • Collect general emergency supplies like flashlight, bleach, or water as possible batteries, etc

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Geology Times• Disaster Issue • Issue #37 • December, 2013

Did Glodal Warming Cause Hurricane Sandy?

Meaghan Pogue

Areas like the U.S. East coast have historically been safe havens from nature’s most deadly forces. Scientists are predicting this sudden change in geologic activity to due to rapid climate change.

caused dangerous changes that serious impact the safety of areas like New York, the economic center of the United States.

Scientists also found evidence that the Northeast U.S. is a hotspot for sea level rise. Climate warming does not change sea level at the same rate According to scientists everywhere—lunar warming climate cycles and normal begins at the warming water circulation According to the Center oceans. Ocean surface impact where waters for Climate and Energy temperatures were will rise and when. Solutions, “While no recorded at an unusual However, in the North single weather event high. September 2012, American Atlantic, sea cane be said to have just one month before level rise increases been directly caused Hurricane Sandy, was in a hotspot located by climate change, out second highest ocean off the coast of Cape weather now is the temperature on record Hatteras at 3-4 times product of our changing globally, at 1.21 degrees higher than the global climate, as increased F above the average 59 average. Studies at warming raised the degrees F. Hurricanes, the Intergovernmental probability of extreme which thrive off warm Panel on Climate weather events.” This water, will only intensity Change predict New changing climate has as the water warms. York could see a 14 cm


Geology Times• Disaster Issue • Issue #37 • December, 2013

increase in sea level by 2100, which could have disastrous effects of storm surges. There is also evidence that the melting of artic ice could explain why Hurricane Sandy had such a unique path. North Atlantic storms usually flow the same path out to sea before hitting North America. Instead of safely dying out at sea, Sandy directly hit the East coast. Scientist suggests that artic ice acts as a barrier between cold and hot air where the jet stream is created. As the ice melts due to warmer temperatures, the jet stream meanders, causes abnormally hot or cold

Shore house in New Jersey, after Hurricane Sandy.

airs at unusually times. Sandy got caught in this “block” or “meandering of the jet steam,” causing it to directly hit the coast. Scientists predict this phenomenon will only worsen as artic ice continues to melt. Frank Edwards, part of True North, an Emergency Management firm based in New York, says weather anomalies like Sandy have become a reality. According to Edwards, although the city “remained intact and bounced back pretty quickly,” much needs to change in the event of another storm of similar or greater size. “Most of the city wasn’t built with flood prevention in mind,

despite being bordered by rivers and on the edge of the Atlantic Ocean. Long-term, a lot more should be done to mitigate against flooding.” Hurricane Sandy is only the beginning. As the world continues to warm, the number of odd yet devastating natural disasters will only increase. It leaves the world with only two options—find a way to stop the impacts of global warming, or prepare every part of the world for the worst nature has to offer.


Geology Times• Disaster Issue • Issue #37 • December, 2013

Super Storm Sandy


Geology Times• Disaster Issue • Issue #37 • December, 2013


Geology pogue  

Disaster v. Hollywood Fall 2013 Meaghan Pogue

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