Assess the extent to which primary rather than secondary impacts are the more serious effects arising from volcanic eruptions. (30 marks)

1030 WordsJan 31, 20145 Pages
Assess the extent to which primary rather than secondary impacts are the more serious effects arising from volcanic eruptions. (30 marks) A volcano is an earth hazard that occurs on faults between tectonic plates on a destructive boundary and an eruption is a natural disaster. A primary impact happens immediately after the disaster and before any response like death or collapsing or destruction of buildings. A secondary impact occurs later after the disaster, such less farm produce or a reduction in tourism. The severity of these impacts will differ considerably in a MEDC and LEDC where volcanic eruptions have taken place. These may be seen in the Mount St. Helen volcano eruption as well as in the Iceland volcanic eruption. They may also…show more content…
Due to its level of development an MEDC will most likely have money or back up to carry out a proper response scheme which is why secondary impacts in MEDCs are less serious. Another reason for there being much less secondary impacts in MEDCs is that due to the country’s higher GDP per capita, less people will live near to a volcano as they have enough money to be able to live in a place where they are less vulnerable to an earth hazard, as the area next to the volcano is less valuable in an MEDC. People in MEDCs do have a choice of where to live but in countries like Japan many people live within reach of volcanic eruptions in a dangerous area and these numbers are likely to increase as world population continues to grow. In LEDCs people often have no choice and are less aware of the risks. Therefore the primary impacts are more likely to be serious as more people in potential danger compared to an MEDC where there is less likely to be many people around in the area. However some volcanic eruptions can cause secondary impacts despite all this, the eruption of the Icelandic volcano in 2010 caused huge secondary economic impacts all over Europe due to an ash cloud. It was the largest disruption of air travel since World War Two, caused the BMW plant in Germany to close down for a month due to lack of parts and cost the European airline industry £130 million a day. This shows how in MEDCs secondary impacts can be reduced

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