Table of Contents

Handbook on Climate Change and Human Security

Handbook on Climate Change and Human Security

Elgar original reference

Edited by Michael R. Redclift and Marco Grasso

The Handbook on Climate Change and Human Security is a landmark publication which links the complexities of climate change to the wellbeing and resilience of human populations. It is written in an engaging and accessible way but also conveys the state of the art on both climate change research and work into human security, utilizing both disciplinary and interdisciplinary approaches. Organized around thematic sections, each chapter is written by an acknowledged expert in the field, and discusses the key concepts and evidence base for our current policy choices, and the dilemmas of international policy in the field. The Handbook is unique in containing sophisticated ethical and moral questions as well as new information and data from different geographical regions. It is a timely volume that makes the case for acting wisely now to avert impending crises and global environmental problems.

Chapter 8: Disasters and human security: natural hazards and political instability in Haiti and the Dominican Republic

Christian Webersik and Christian D. Klose

Subjects: environment, climate change, environmental geography, environmental politics and policy, environmental sociology, politics and public policy, environmental politics and policy

Extract

The discussion on the impact of natural hazards on human security has gained momentum in recent years. Given the climate change scenarios of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), with predicted changes in tropical cyclone intensity, a growing world population, and a trend towards coastal urbanization exposing more people to natural hazards, and persistent poverty, scientists and policymakers alike are increasingly concerned with possible political ramifications of the impact of natural hazards. Apart from meteorological natural hazards, earthquakes, volcanoes and tsunamis are also believed to have destabilizing effects. But can these claims be substantiated? In the aftermath of a disaster, the media is often quick to report on chaos and acts of violence. Some attribute this outbreak of instability to the breakdown of the social order; as Timothy Garton Ash puts it boldly: “Remove the elementary staples of organised, civilised life – food, shelter, drinkable water, minimal personal security – and we go back within hours to a Hobbesian state of nature, a war of all against all” (Ash, 2005).

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