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- Volume 3, Issue 2, 2011
Jamba : Journal of Disaster Risk Studies - Volume 3, Issue 2, 2011
Volume 3, Issue 2, 2011
An evaluation of the effectiveness of flood disaster mitigation measures in the city of Adigrat, Tigray region, EthiopiaAuthor Thomas Phinias Zuluboy MpofuSource: Jamba : Journal of Disaster Risk Studies 3, pp 384 –400 (2011)More Less
Ethiopia is one of the countries that experience regular flooding. This is mostly confined to certain low areas such as river basins. The Huga River that runs through the Adigrat City in the Tigray Region is one such case. Flooding in Adigrat often leads to loss of human lives, destruction of property as well as disruption of people's livelihoods. Despite a number of response measures that have been implemented by this City's administration, no comprehensive study has been undertaken to evaluate the effectiveness of those measures. Therefore, between March and July 2009, this study was undertaken to evaluate the effectiveness of the City's flood mitigation strategy. Specifically, the study sought to evaluate both the structural and non-structural measures. Structural measures included the construction of new drainage channels; the diversion of river channels; and elevation of riverbanks. Non-structural measures included land use planning; flood disaster preparedness; and enactment and enforcement of rules and regulations. It was hoped that the findings of the study would help Adigrat City Administration to improve its flood disaster mitigation strategies. The study utilised primary data from the affected household heads, the City Administration, the Disaster Prevention and Preparedness Bureau, the Road Construction Authority and some non-governmental organisations. Secondary data were obtained from literature as well as annual reports of the above organisations. The main findings of the study were that most of the drainage channels were sub-standard; land use planning and rules and regulations were not enforced; and a flood disaster preparedness strategy was non-existent. The City fathers attributed their failures to shortages of financial and qualified human resources. The major recommendation of the study is the urgent formulation of a flood management policy to guide mitigation operations and define the roles and responsibilities of each stakeholder.
Urban and rural dimensions in post-disaster adjustment challenges in selected communities in Kwara State, NigeriaAuthor Raheem Usman AdebimpeSource: Jamba : Journal of Disaster Risk Studies 3, pp 401 –416 (2011)More Less
Human populations are exposed to climate change directly through changing weather patterns as manifested in the more frequent extreme events and indirectly through changes in ecosystem functions. Rainstorm disasters are common events associated with environmental change and settlements in Kwara state, Nigeria were ravaged by rainstorm events between 2003 and 2006. More than 1000 households were displaced from their habitual homes with consequences for human health and other adjustment challenges. This paper examines the variations in the post-disaster adjustment challenges of rural and urban households so as to identify location specific intervention strategies in the domains of environment and health of the victims. A sample of 200 households was drawn from all households affected by rainstorm disaster as reflected in the FEMA records during the period. A structured questionnaire was administered in addition to the secondary data and analyzed using relevant statistical techniques. The findings include that most households required support before replacing the roofs and / or walls of their homes. Sources of support however vary. Urban households received more institutional support but lower than the amount required for the renovation. A significant proportion of urban households moved to poorer homes where they faced challenges relating to the quality of environmental services. Many urban respondents also reported increases in the occurrence of water-borne and weather-related diseases and ailments. Rural households indicated no significant ecological differences between their former homes and the areas to which they relocated. The paper concludes that significant variations exist in the adjustment challenges faced by rural and urban dwellers after a disaster. Community efforts hold promise for emergency response particularly during disasters in rural areas.
Invasive plant species and their disaster-effects in dry tropical forests and rangelands of Kenya and TanzaniaAuthor John F. ObiriSource: Jamba : Journal of Disaster Risk Studies 3, pp 417 –428 (2011)More Less
Invasive plants are a hazard in the tropical dry forests and rangelands of East Africa. Although often not reported, they have increasingly created disasters that have affected the environment and socio-economic wellbeing of communities inhabiting these dry regions. This paper reports on the key invasives in the drylands of Kenya and Tanzania and their effects, and suggests some disaster risk reduction (DRR) strategies. The study was largely based on secondary data analysis and supported by surveys in the affected drylands. The findings show ten key invasive plant species that affect the drylands. Their disaster-effects vary and include: causing the death of livestock by poisoning and destroying livestock foliage, accelerating biodiversity loss via suppression of native plants, to increasing diseases by offering a breeding ground for mosquitoes and other insects that carry ailments like nagana and sleeping sickness.
The DRR initiatives include (1) having a prudent land use system that discourages activities like unplanned burning of drylands, (2) assessing and monitoring phytosanitary risks associated with introduced plant species, (3) strengthening national and local institutional capacities that enhance invasive species awareness and preparedness for disasters, and (4) enhancing early warning systems related to plant invasion.
Source: Jamba : Journal of Disaster Risk Studies 3, pp 429 –442 (2011)More Less
Coastal communities worldwide are becoming increasingly vulnerable to a wide range of potential hazards including shoreline erosion and coastal resource degradation. The problem is exacerbated due to rapid urbanization and the concomitant anthropogenic beach changes which influence coastal processes. The lack of basic services and disaster warning as well as response mechanisms makes the situation daunting. Using mainly qualitative methods, which include two Focus Group Discussions and 17 in-depth interviews, the authors explore the perception of respondents in regard to coastal erosion and how to mitigate the observed condition. The research incorporates both physical and social science knowledge. Our key finding is that although the Faana coastline is eroding at a significantly high rate, residents are resolved to maintain their occupancy for as long as they have the opportunity to practise their trade. The authors argue that proactive measures can be taken to reduce vulnerability and provide the enabling conditions for communities to absorb and bounce back from disruptions in basic services and economic activities.
Challenges to disaster risk reduction : a study of stakeholders' perspectives in Imizamo Yethu, South AfricaSource: Jamba : Journal of Disaster Risk Studies 3, pp 443 –452 (2011)More Less
South Africa is a complex and dynamic society, with overwhelming and increasing problems with disaster risk in the vulnerable urban communities in and around its rapidly growing metropolitan centres. The purpose of this study is to improve the understanding of the challenges for disaster risk reduction in such communities. It focuses on the case of Imizamo Yethu, in the Western Cape, in order to build theory that is grounded in the empirical realities of stakeholders involved in disaster risk reduction there. The result points towards five interrelated key challenges, which must be concurrently addressed through large-scale development efforts. Without such investments, it is unlikely that disaster risks can be reduced to tolerable levels.
Author Marcus OxleySource: Jamba : Journal of Disaster Risk Studies 3, pp 453 –461 (2011)More Less
Unusually heavy monsoon rains in Northern Pakistan have caused disproportionate levels of extreme flooding and unprecedented flood losses across the entire Indus River basin. Extensive land use changes and environmental degradation in the uplands and lowlands of the river basin together with the construction of a "built environment" out of balance with the functioning, capacities, scale and limits of the local ecosystems have exposed millions of people to an increased risk of extreme flooding.
The catastrophic nature of the August flooding provides a unique opportunity to fundamentally change Pakistan's current socio-economic development path by incorporating disaster risk reduction and climate change measures into the post-disaster recovery process to rebuild a safer, more resilient nation.
In January 2005 one hundred and sixty-eight nations adopted the Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA) 2005 - 2015 to bring about a "substantial reduction in disaster losses" by 2015. Despite this global initiative a series of major disasters, including the recent flooding in Pakistan, all indicate that we are not on track to achieve the substantial reduction of disaster losses. The following fieldnote considers what can be done to accelerate progress towards implementation of the Hyogo Framework, drawing on insights and lessons learnt from the August flooding to understand how Pakistan and neighbouring countries can prevent a repeat of such catastrophic disasters in future years.
Corruption : the hidden perpetrator of under-development and vulnerability to natural hazards and disasters : the Pat Reid lecture 2010Author James LewisSource: Jamba : Journal of Disaster Risk Studies 3, pp 464 –475 (2011)More Less
"Formerly Leverhulme Senior Research Fellow and co-founder of the Disaster Research Unit, University of Bradford (1973 - 77), James Lewis relocated to the University of Bath and became Visiting Fellow at the Centre for Development Studies. Datum International was created in1980 for consultancy to the United Nations (UNCTAD, UNEP, UNESCO, UN Habitat & WHO), the Commonwealth Secretariat / Commonwealth Fund for Technical Cooperation, and the European Commission. James Lewis is author of Development in Disaster-prone Places: Studies of Vulnerability (1999: IT / Practical Action, London) and of numerous chapters and papers on vulnerability to natural hazards, corruption, island vulnerability, climate change, and interconnections with socio-economic capacity, development and disaster risk reduction. As a commissioned author to Transparency International Berlin, he has contributed to Global Corruption Reports of 2005, Corruption in Construction, and 2011, Corruption and Climate Change. Trained and practiced as an architect and member of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), James Lewis has been involved in applications, implications, management and inspection of construction, destruction and reconstruction in Algeria, Bangladesh, the Caribbean, China (Hong Kong), the South Pacific, the United Kingdom and the USA. www.datum-international.eu "