When disaster strikes, does the world respond fairly?
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Issue 94, October 2022
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The year-round resource for EGU members
Geoscience for the benefit of humanity and the planet

Credit: Anna Lourantou (from imaggeo.egu.eu)

When disaster strikes, does the world respond fairly?

Researchers explain why disaster risk reduction strategies aren’t as inclusive as we think

Natural hazards don’t discriminate, but the same can’t be said about most disaster response and relief efforts around the world. With Black History Month and International Day for Disaster Reduction in the spotlight in October, geoscientists tell us how socio-economic vulnerability affects public perception of hazard risk, and why Black, Indigenous, and People of Colour (BIPOC) communities are most affected by natural hazards even today.

There’s more than meets the eye when assessing perceptions of vulnerability to hazards. “Social vulnerability is underpinned by the political context, armed conflicts, limited access to livelihoods, and dependent economies, so people are more concerned with daily survival than with natural hazards,” explains Blaise Nyandwi, lecturer at the University of Goma. Blaise shares his insights on Geotalk in conversation with EGU Projects Coordination Officer Simon Clark.

What happens when race and natural hazards intersect? Three geoscientists explore the many ways that race and natural hazards are linked: does one affect the other? What are the factors that hinder natural hazard response for BIPOC communities? And what role can researchers play to address these issues?

Drought remains a hazard under-served by the imagination, its risk devalued compared to other hazards like flooding and storms. This can have deadly consequences: the public is underprepared or unaware of how they should act under drought conditions, while policy- and decision-makers de-prioritize its position in risk mitigation strategies. Our latest blog Why do we keep dismissing drought? explains why perceptions of drought are highly variable and the impact this tends to have on the world.

Science Policy

GeoPolicy: Connect with artists to make your science accessible to policymakers and the public

In her blog, Noel Baker, climate scientist and project manager at the Royal Belgian Institute for Space Aeronomy, member of EGU’s Science for Policy Working Group, and sci-artist, highlights the Seas and Oceans art expo and cultural event. This event gives scientists the opportunity to collaborate with an artist and share their expertise in a creative way with diverse audiences! Sign up before November 17 to get involved.

Register now to join the EU biodiversity event that aims to bridge the science-policy divide

On 15 November 2022, EGU and the European Parliament Intergroup on ‘Climate Change, Biodiversity and Sustainable Development’ will host an event inside the European Parliament that highlights how researchers can better support the EU’s biodiversity targets. This hybrid event welcomes all EGU members! Register now!

Journal Watch

“Created with open-source software and an open-access plate model, [our Solid Earth Evolution Model] covers the last billion years, including the formation, breakup, and dispersal of two supercontinents, as well as the creation and destruction of numerous ocean basins.”

Müller et al, 2022 Solid Earth


October EGU journal highlights


Sign up for EGU’s new Equality, Diversity and Inclusion mailing list!

Our newest committee, Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI), has a twitter account: @EGU_ED!

You can now follow them, or sign up for the mailing list to keep up to date with all their activities. EGU members can join here and non-members can join here.

Resource of the month

How To Communicate Sensitive Science To Non-experts

How do you engage the public on sensitive subjects and elicit behaviour change? Does communicating on risky topics vary during periods of disaster? Watch our free EGUwebinar to know more!

Upcoming Dates

EGU Science for Policy Hangout

Join us at 16:30 CET on 3 November to meet people working at the science-policy interface. Get the scoop on upcoming science for policy opportunities and virtually mingle in an informal environment.

How To Measure The Earth – An Introduction To Geodesy

Our EGUwebinar at 16:00 CET on 22 November offers an introduction to Geodesy: how to study the shape and location of the Earth in time and space, using a multitude of geoscientific disciplines. Register now!

EGU election for new Treasurer

Voting for the next EGU Treasurer will be open to all EGU members until 30 November 2022. The Treasurer chairs the Finance Committee, is responsible for the Union’s finances and annual budget to the Council.

Nominations open for ESA-EGU Award for Earth Observation Excellence

Nominate an Early Career Scientist (ECS) or team that contributes to the innovative use of earth observations! Deadline is 7 December, see more here.

EGU Blogs

Fagradalsfjall 2021 versus 2022: similarity and differences

Geochemistry, Mineralogy, Petrology & Volcanology Division blog

Earth Science Beyond Academia

Geodynamics Division blog

Seismic Field Work at the Equator

Seismology Division blog

Featured EGU Divisions
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