Coping with the After-Effects of Earthquakes
Earthquakes don’t kill people—but the cascading hazards and risks that ripple through nature, society and infrastructure after they strike do. Recent major disasters, including the 2011 earthquake in Tohoku, Japan, and the 2015 earthquake in Gorkha, Nepal, are harsh reminders that complex risk cascades drive most earthquake crises.
Canada has a high likelihood of facing significant earthquake threats in the future. Southwestern British Columbia is exposed to major seismic hazards and related secondary hazards (such as liquefaction and tsunami) originating from the Cascadia subduction zone. A 9.0 mega-thrust earthquake in Cascadia would have significant impacts on Victoria and Vancouver, and could cause catastrophic damage as well as economic loss.
Dr. Katsuichiro Goda, Canada Research Chair in Multi-Hazard Risk Assessment, is developing an integrated multi-hazard framework for enhancing disaster risk preparedness and management related to earthquake catastrophe. He and his research team will integrate a wide range of new, state-of-the-art hazard and risk models into a comprehensive methodology by considering uncertainty associated with predictions of hazards and risks. The resulting assessment tools will improve current practices related to preparing multi-hazard maps. They will also improve the ability of households, municipalities and insurers to bear financial risks.
Goda’s research will promote a multidisciplinary approach in the field of multi-hazard natural disaster risk management by linking our scientific understanding of natural hazards with statistical, actuarial and financial modelling expertise. Ultimately, this will make a real impact in reducing large-scale disaster risks in Canada and globally.