5 Mind Blowing Devastations to Think About
The world is often plagued by natural disasters, which destroy its natural habitat and cause innumerable deaths. One could say it is the Malthusian theory of balancing population through natural calamities, but these calamities are not a desirable or acceptable way to resolve world population problems or, for that matter, to maintain the eco-balance of the Earth.
People all over the world go through horrendous experiences during natural disasters which uproot their lives and leave them devastated mentally and physically.
Let us have a look at some of the top world natural disasters that left a mark in the minds of the people affected by them as well as citizens all over the world. Many ponder as to why and how the Earth can unleash its fury, causing devastating calamities and making us feel so vulnerable despite man-made technological inventions that were made to protect us.
Some questions that often arise are: Are we truly at the mercy of Nature? Do we fail to really gain a control over it? Are we too small to make united efforts to confront such disasters? Here are a few disasters that make us question our own existence on this Earth.
- Hurricane Katrina remains fresh in the minds of North Americans as well as conscious world citizens. It targeted the U.S. Gulf Coast on August 29th, 2005. The hurricane caused over $81 billion in damages and nearly 1,800 people lost their lives. Even now, Americans recall the event and cannot forget the loss and devastation caused by the hurricane. Those affected had to recover from their losses and health setbacks and go back to earning their livelihood. The city of New Orleans took a long time to recover from the shock.
- The Great Sumatra Andaman Earthquake of 2004 (also known as Asian Tsunami) proved to be the worst earthquake in history, affecting India, Thailand, Sri Lanka and Indonesia. The earthquake caused a series of treacherous tsunamis along most of the landmasses on the borders of the Indian Ocean, killing nearly 225,000 people in 11 countries. It had a magnitude of 9.1-9.3 and happens to be the second largest earthquake ever recorded on the seismograph. The duration of the earthquake was somewhere between 8.3 and 10 minutes. Vibrations were felt all over the planet and triggered earthquakes as far away as Alaska. The devastation was such that more than $14 billion was donated by the worldwide community for rehabilitation purposes.
- Tsunami in Indian Ocean 2004, from Indonesia to Africa, happens to be the most deadly natural disaster in recent times. The final death toll of the tsunami was 280,000. The highest death toll from a tsunami up till 2004 was in 1896, when around 27,000 people were drowned due to an earthquake occurring off the coast of Japan, according to Guinness Book of Records.
- Ethiopia’s worst famine 2003in 20 years left many hungry and helpless. Tons of U.S. food grains were sent to feed the famished Ethiopians. Over 20 million people required help and several western charities provided some relief. Cases of malnutrition were on the increase. Malaria and measles outbreaks caused much damage to the health of the people .A large number of cattle died. Food grain prices increased rapidly. Ethiopia suffered from economic hardships tremendously during the famine.
- Floods in Bangladesh 2004were the worst floods in decades hitting Dhaka city. Government offices had to be closed. Many trains stopped running and several vehicles went off the road. The threat of sewage contaminating clean water services of the city loomed large. Emergency supplies had to be made available. In some areas rainwater submerged shops. The damage was estimated to be around $7 billion.
It is quite obvious Man has been unable to conquer nature’s fury. Despite his technical know-how and expertise and innovative intelligence, he has failed to prevent these natural disasters and has remained a mere spectator to the devastation. Perhaps as centuries go by, he will ponder on ways and means to counter the challenge and make the impossible possible.