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Disaster database UPSC NOTE

 Missing data

  • In 2023, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations noted that disaster events worldwide have increased from 100 events per year in the 1970s to around 400 per year in the last 20 years. 

  • However, an analysis of the disaster database shows that the increase in the number of disasters is partly a result of reporting bias.

  • More recently, reporting and communication of small events have improved. 

  • In a 2004 report, Centre for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters (CRED) noted that historical data was based on retrospective analysis, resulting in a list that included mainly events of major importance

  • This is because neither humanitarian aid nor telecommunications were particularly developed and few organisations were interested in compiling data on natural disasters.

  • The further we go in the past, the more we see large events dominating the records. 

  • Small and medium events were missed at the time and are impossible to be identified today.

  • Disaster data also reveal large gaps, especially for economic damages. 

  • More than 40% of disasters between 1990 and 2020 did not have estimated monetary damages

  • This was worse for insured damages, which were missing 88% of the time, while 96% had no records of reconstruction costs

  • Data coverage also tended to be poorer in low-income countries

  • Disaster statistics also reveal inconsistencies for different types of disasters.

  • Disasters often have near-term and acute impacts on human mortality, health, and infrastructure

  • However, disasters such as droughts can also lead to some indirect, medium-to-long-term impacts such as malnutrition and food insecurity, which are harder to quantify


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Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam: Disaster database UPSC NOTE
Disaster database UPSC NOTE
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