It has also observed an increase in tropical cyclones, par cularly over the North Atlan c, and coastal erosion due to intensifi ed storms (UNISDR, 2008b). Van Aalst assessed the rela onship between climatechange and extreme weather events and argues that poten al increases in extreme events due to climatechange are o en exacerbated by increased socio- economic vulnerability, thereby making the impacts even worse (Van Aalst, 2006). Both climatechange and changing disasters risks have an impact on electricity genera on, such as on power plants and fuel availability. The following sec ons will discuss the impact of climatechange and changing disasters risks on electricity genera on from fossil fuels, nuclear power, hydropower, wind energy, solar energy and biomass.
For most developing countries at risk of disasters and climatechange, adopting structural measures to reduce disaster risks remain a challenge. This paper presents findings of a study conducted through a mixed methods design in a flood risk city in Malawi, Sub- Saharan Africa. The study assesses the city’s vulnerability to floods and actions being taken to reduce the risks. It then investigates how resettlement is being promoted as one such risk reduction measure. The study finds multiple vulnerability factors, including unsafe construction practices, poor drainage systems, unregulated solid waste disposal, institutional incapacity, inadequacy of land, settlements in high-risk areas, deforestation, siltation of rivers and national disaster risk reduction policies that neglect urban areas. However, efforts to tackle underlying causes of vulnerability are wanting. One positive programme is a slum upgrading pilot project implemented by non-state actors that also lacks government support. In the case of resettlement, its planning and execution is fraught with multiple challenges emanating from haphazard planning and lack of community participation. The paper argues that the emphasis on resettlement is obscuring the key drivers of vulnerability, while simultaneously exposing both resettled and those left behind to further risks. It, therefore, calls for caution when planning and implementing disaster risk reduction policies that have the potential to create new forms of vulnerability to hazards or exacerbate them.
The Nobel Prize in Economics in 2018 has considered climatechange in the long-run macroeconomic analysis, as it is one of the main culprits behind the natural disasters. Recently, across the world several extreme natural events have been frequently occurring such as floods, earthquakes, and tsunamis. For example, the recent earthquake and tsunami on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi killed about 832 persons in 2018. The severe flood in the Indian state of Kerala in this year was the result of unusually high rainfall during the monsoon season. It was the worst floods ever witnessed in Kerala in nearly a century, which left 12 lakh people homeless and more than 300 people dead. Property worth more than Rs 20,000 crore was lost. As these extreme events are associated with a large amount of deaths and destruction of assets, it compels us to study their effect on the behavior of household, individuals, and aggregate economic outcomes, such as poverty and inequality. The extreme weather events create poverty traps, which are linked with health, education, livestock, and other assets. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) Working Group II (WG II) report mentioned that climatechange will impact the world severely and the risks are intensifying. India is especially vulnerable since it houses 33% of the world’s poorest people. India is conventionally vulnerable to natural disasters on account of its unique geo-climatic conditions. Swiss Re reports (2006 and 2007) indicated that among the 20 worst catastrophes in terms of victims, India has the most victims compared to other countries.
Internationally, acknowledgement of climatechange as an additional risk for tsunami vulnerability is increasing (See: Hinkel et al, 2018). For example, Dall Osso et al (2014) suggest that Sydney s existing exposure to earthquake-generated tsunamis is relatively low but would increase significantly under higher sea level conditions caused by combinations of tide and/or sea level rise . In New Zealand, Tonkin and Taylor Ltd. s consultancy report for Wellington City Council (Tonkin & Taylor Ltd., 2013: 63) assumes increased risk exposure and that [I]ncreased sea levels may also mean greater water depths closer to the shore that can increase near shore wave heights and may also modify tsunami impacts (2013: 10). In 2004 Otago Regional Council collected LiDAR data which enabled a detailed hydrodynamic model study to be undertaken of the risk of tsunami and storm- related inundation for the entire region, including an assessment of the potential effects of future sea level rise (NZME, 2009: 15). Indeed, New Zealand s government is moving from deterministic perspectives of disasters as single events, towards an approach that understands disasters within a dynamic system of sudden events and long-term processes (NZME, 2009). As an ageing and shrinking society prone to tsunami, T hoku suits this approach.
Climate-change-induced disasters such as floods, heavy storms, tornadoes and extreme lightning are becoming more frequent in Africa generally and in South Africa specifically. Several factors contribute to Africa’s high vulnerability to disasters, including the high rate of population growth, food insecurity, high levels of poverty, inappropriate use of natural resources and failures of policy and institutional frameworks. The study adopted an ecological systems theory as a theoretical framework to explain how social work in rural communities deals with climate-change-induced disasters. The aim was to explore and describe the role of social work in the assessment of climatechange disaster predicaments. A qualitative approach, utilising an exploratory-descriptive design, was adopted for this study. A purposive sampling technique was used to select five social workers and two social auxiliary workers to participate in the study. Semi-structured interviews were applied in the research as a tool for data collection. Data were analysed qualitatively using thematic content analysis. The research concluded that social workers should intervene in climate- change-induced disasters by conducting assessments and providing disaster intervention strategies.
The climate is changing and subsequently so are the characteristics, patterns, and consequences of natural disasters. The Intergovernmental Panel on ClimateChange (IPCC) is one of the leading international bodies responsible for the synthesis of climatechange research. The IPCC Fourth (AR4) and Fifth (AR5) assessment reports (IPCC, 2007; IPCC, 2014) demonstrate that there has been significant global changes in the climate and that the rate of climatechange continues to rise. Evidence supports that global average surface temperature is increasing; snow, mountain glaciers, and ice cover is decreasing; and global average sea levels are rising at alarming rates (Shepherd, et al., 2010; Radić and Hock, 2011; IPCC, 2014; Bathiany et al., 2016). All these global changes have far-reaching effects with long term consequences. There is general consensus in the scientific community (Cook, et al., 2016) and many internationally recognized scientific and governmental organizations including NASA, United Nations, World Economic Forum, and World Health Organization (among others) have issued public statements endorsing that the climate is warming and that this warming effect is extremely likely to be influenced by human activities (NASA, 2009; United Nations, 1992; IPCC, 2012; United Nations, 1997; WHO, 2003). In the past few decades, there has been mounting political, commercial, and academic awareness and recognition of the potential devastating impacts that climatechange may have on natural, human, and manmade systems.
UK climatechange policy started to be formulated in concise terms from the beginning of the 1990s on. In response to the Framework Convention on ClimateChange in Rio (1992) the target that the year 2000 emissions should be no larger than emissions in the year 1990 was set up as a voluntary agreement. Through the privatization of the electricity market by the Conservative Government, this target could largely be met. The change in government to New Labour did not interrupt UK efforts in reducing emissions. Even though the targets introduced during the Nineties might have been too ambitious to be met immediately, numerous measures have been enacted to counteract the ongoing increase in CO2 emissions in the UK. One example that directly affects the electricity industry is the so-called Renewables Obligation, which requires electricity retailers to acquire at least 10% of their electricity from renewable sources, but there are also a number of taxes involved in the wider emissions reduction program. In addition, nuclear electricitygeneration is presently considered as a potential “bridge” during the transition from fossil-fuel-based power production to a more sustainable system based on renewable energy.
This paper focuses on the interaction between uncertainty and insurability in the context of some of the risks associated with climatechange. It discusses the evolution of insured losses due to weather-related disasters over the past decade, and the key drivers of the sharp increases in both economic and insured catastrophe losses over the past 20 years. In particular we examine the impact of development in hazard-prone areas and of global warming on the potential for catastrophic losses in the future. In this context we discuss the implications for insurance risk capital and the capacity of the insurance industry to handle large-scale events. A key question that needs to be addressed is the factors that determine the insurability of a risk and the extent of coverage offered by the private sector to provide protection against extreme events where there is significant uncertainty surrounding the probability and consequences of a catastrophic loss. We discuss the concepts of insurability by focusing on coverage for natural hazards, such as earthquakes, hurricanes and floods. The paper also focuses on the liability issues associated with global climatechange, and possible implications for insurers (including D&O), given the difficulty in identifying potential defendants, tracing harm to their actions and apportioning damages among them. The paper concludes by suggesting ways that insurers can help mitigate future damages from global climatechange by providing premium reductions and rate credits to companies investing in risk-reducing measures. Howard C. Kunreuther
An “emergency” arm, called PETi, is activated in response to disasters. On average, PETi payments are disbursed within five working days after a disaster is declared. Disbursements are made in cash through the Mexican Telecommunications Agency (Telecomm), which has a broad network of cash disbursement facilities around the country. Where fixed cash disbursement facilities do not exist or conditions make it difficult for beneficiaries to reach them, Telecomm sometimes uses mobile facilities. In general, for smaller amounts of cash, the program make payments to community committees, which distribute the cash to households. In areas with better connectivity or areas in which a larger number of beneficiaries live, cash disbursements are made through commercial banks or Telecomm.
It is in principle conceivable that much of the indirect adverse impact of disasters can be prevented by more successful disaster risk reduction policies. Many of these preventive policies, however, require collaboration and a concentrated use of resources and this is not easy to achieve. Collective action is easier when inter- communal ties are stronger (e.g. Aldrich, 2014). The importance of communities is one of the main sources of resilience in the Pacific context. Some recent research from Fiji has also suggested that the communitarian nature of many Pacific cultures generates more resilient policymaking in post-disaster contexts (Takasaki, 2013). This communitarian aspect can also, in this context, be a double-edged sword. It can also be characterized by strong hierarchical and paternalistic relationships, which make the distribution of post disaster allocations less equitable and less affected by need. Takasaki (2011), for example, shows that in some instances the elites manage to ‘confiscate’ much of the post disaster assistance.
Figure S5: Estimated hourly electricity demand temperature response function. The gray dots represent the historical values (2006-2015) of hourly temperature and electricity demand (temperature dependent). The red solid line is the average response curve according to our estimated model. The histograms at the top and at the right of the panel display the observed distribution of the variable on the respective axis.
proof of anthropogenic climatic changes, but whether the climatic data and models used thus far offer an adequate basis for sensibly assessing future changes and devel- oping appropriate adaptation and avoidance strategies in a timely fashion. Given the fact that the risk of error will remain great for the foreseeable future, it is all the more important that the strategies themselves be adaptable, and their results be measurable in terms of the losses that are to be avoided. Success is guaranteed from the start in the case of “no-regret” strategies such as measures to reduce the fuel consumption of motor vehicles or energy consumption in general because, even if the strategies prove to be less relevant to the climate than is currently supposed, they will in any case yield desirable savings and demonstrate the industrial nations’ awareness of their responsibility toward the Third World.
northern, central and eastern Europe, but the general picture remains similar, with most basins across the EU (over 84% and 82% for 2020 and 2030 respectively) remaining within 5% of their 2014 VEW in future years. By 2020, water withdrawals for thermoelectric generation decrease by 7%, while consumption increases by 2.7%, related to an increase in cooling towers compared with once-through systems. Between 2014 and 2020, 175 thermal units are scheduled for retirement, and 196 units for construction and operation, with a large switch from coal to gas ( − 84 coal and +102 gas units). No nuclear units are decommissioned in this time, and 7 more are constructed. All retired units use steam turbine technology. Among new plants, 44% are combined cycle, with the remaining 56% split approximately equally between steam and gas turbine technologies. Despite ambitious targets for reducing EU thermal generation reliance by 2020, changes are not sufficient to lower water vulnerability, with most basins (over 84%) remaining within 4% of the 2014 values (see Supplementary Table 3 for further details). Some small variations are visible, with reductions in vulnerability in northern European regions, and increases in the Mediterranean. Several nations have high-vulnerability basins where further thermoelectric plant construction is planned or consented (in Spain, Bulgaria, Belgium, Germany, Greece and Poland).
This article investigates a low carbon pathway, the theoretical frame for understanding the trade- offs between economic development and climatechange. An already developed model – Electricity Planning-Low Carbon Development (EP-LCD) – was adapted and modified to examine the nonlinear relationship between generation adequacy and greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction for better targeted strategic regional intervention on climatechange. Two broad scenarios – Base and LCD Option – were tested for the West African Power Pool (WAPP). The cost impact of increasing generation capacity in the LCD Option was estimated at US$1.54 trillion over a 50 year period. Achieving the goal of low carbon pathway would be largely influenced by government decision. Four strategies, in line with the Nationally Determined Contribution in Paris Agreement, were recommended. These are: a) enforced improved efficient electricitygeneration through increased energy efficiency that should result in increased capacity factor; b) decreased energy intensity of economic activities to result in reduced emission factor in existing plants; c) attract new investment through low tax or tax exemption to reduce cost of constructing power plants for the benefit of base-load plants; and d) subsidized cost of low-carbon fuels in the short run to benefit intermediate load plants and allow for the ramping up of low-/no-carbon fuel generation capacity. These are recommended considering the region’s specific economical and political conditions where funds are tremendously difficult to raise. Implementing these recommendations will allow the electric power industry in West Africa to contribute to achieving sustainable development path.
Studies have shown that precipitation is the most important source of uncertainty derived from the Global Circulation Model predictions, and that this uncertainty is further magnified by runoff-related issues. The historical practice of depending on natural systems to fluctuate within an unchanging envelope of variability is no longer appropriate (Milly et al. 2008). Therefore, improved skill in forecasting precipitation has the potential to greatly improve decision making (Markoff and Cullen 2008). This requires proactive monitoring of the regional and local climate and catchment runoff to provide improved and reliable historical data at a scale that is useful and relevant. In addition, the integration of climate risks into the operational and management decision-making process will ensure a proactive approach (Ebinger and Vergara 2011). This information will improve the early warning systems that include procedures both for evacuation and for securing the electricitygeneration installation and transmission lines before the extreme weather event occurs (Urban and Mitchell 2011). To understand the impacts, a distinction should therefore be made between trends and extreme variability (shocks). Characterising these factors as either trends or extremes provides two key benefits. First, the different impacts on the hydropower infrastructure can be distinguished and therefore more clearly assessed; second, appropriate responses can be identified to manage the different impacts and provide flexible adaptive capacity, as well as being robust to shocks (see Table 1). Climatechange trends and extreme variability need to be considered when siting new plants and when undertaking associated feasibility studies and environmental impact assessments (Urban and Mitchell 2011).
Concerns on the potential impact due to climatechange on human beings, natural and built environment are ever increasing. IPCC  states that climatechange can increase the intensity, frequency and change the distribution patterns of weather events. Studies carried out in Malaysia have revealed that increased temperature due to climatechange is often resulted in increased storms and rainfall intensity . The large variations of the rainfall in frequency and intensity have prone to fluctuations in the river flows that have resulted in climate-induced disasters such as floods, landslides, and soil erosion in Malaysia creating unfavourable results for socio-economic systems in the country. Accordingly, it is argued that that climatechange has introduced an additional layer of complexity and uncertainty into planning and preparedness for disasters in Malaysia.
The general expectation is that climatechange occurs gradually over a long time frame. However, a climatic shift can be described as a relatively abrupt transition in climatic conditions. For instance, annual rainfall amounts may increase or decrease from the previous long-term averages. Similarly, temperature may undergo a climate shift – such as a warming in winter or a cooling in summer. For instance, for the northern hemisphere in recent decades, there are indications of a poleward shift of storm tracks and a strengthening of the storm tracks north of Britain and Ireland. The transition time depends on the overall timescale of interest, but is generally short, i.e. over a 2–5 year period. A shift in a climatic condition brings a change in climate parameters, which are reflected in the statistical properties of data series for these parameters. Rapid climatic shifts, as well as individual events, can result in stress for ecosystems, agricultural systems, infrastructure and societies (Budyko et al., 1988). A meteorological extreme event as distinct from a climate shift can occur during a stable climate. For instance, the floods in Ireland in November 2009 and the cold in January 2010 are regarded as extreme events.
“To address the issues of carbon dioxide and climatechange, the European Union in general and Germany in particular have rushed to impose mandates and subsidies for renewable energy upon the market. Those policies have resulted in dramatically higher energy costs. Meanwhile, thanks to ongoing innovation in the U.S. oil and gas sector and the profusion of natural gas that resulted from that innovation, the U.S. has reduced its carbon dioxide emissions more rapidly than the EU has, and it has done so at much lower cost. The lesson is clear: markets work, and they work best when governmental interventions are not excessive. U.S. policymakers must take a hard look at the experience of the EU and seek to avoid those same mistakes.”