More than half of India’s area is “vulnerable” to earthquakes and several of its cities are at “high risk”, a catastrophe risk management firm said today and advised “closing” these gaps.
Speaking ahead of three-day Asian Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction beginning tomorrow, the firm, in a statement, said that high quality and high resolution risk models are a “key” first step in helping drive the expansion of catastrophe insurance.
“More than half of India by area is vulnerable to earthquakes and almost forty cities are particularly at risk. The rapid expansion in population and development in India is moving too fast to ensure adequate standards of protection,” Robert Muir-Wood, chief research officer of the firm RMS, said, according to a statement.
Muir-Wood noted that India has the highest number of people exposed to flood risk of any country worldwide, and the fastest increase in flood risk from development and climate change.
He said the widespread damage from earthquake to ordinary buildings as seen in Nepal, after massive quake hit the Himalayan country last year, “could equally be the outcome in many cities in India.”
Referring to events such as 2001 Gujarat earthquake, 2005 Mumbai floods and inundation in Chennai last year, Muir-Wood added, “…the protection gap in India must be closed.”