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Disaster Questions and Answers (Q&A)

Pripyat was once a conceptual design city built by the Soviet government and was constructed in 1970. The workers of the nuclear power plant inhabited the town. There was an explosion at the nuclear plant. It was reported that people had severe headaches, metallic tastes in their mouths, and uncontrollable fits of coughing and vomiting, which are the symptoms of radiation poisoning.

Due to exposure to elevated radiation levels, the people were evacuated the day after the incident. The power plant accident had caused the level of radiation to exceed natural standards by a thousand times. Before the disaster, Pripyat had all the luxuries of a modern city. It had a railway station, port, hospital, and a fairground.

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Hurricane occurs mostly in the Hurricane belt. Hurricane belt is a region the Atlantic Ocean that is greatly affected by hurricane. This region includes the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico. Hurricane needs warm water of the tropic regions to feed the storm with energy for the hurricane to form and that is why the drier the hurricane, the less damage it would cause to the affected area because the soil is not well saturated. The hurricane mostly occur around August - September with heavy rainfall and heavy winds.

Not all Caribbean Islands are always hit by hurricane. Islands like Aruba, Curacao, Bonaire, Barbados, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago, Venezuela, Providencia Island and San Andrés are not in the hurricane belt and are not often affected by hurricane.

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In 1872, the Congress of the United States created the first national park in the world. Yellowstone National Park occupies the homonym plateau in the northwestern US. The view is breathtaking and incredibly varied. There are canyons, waterfalls, mesas covered by pastures, and forests. IT has the largest geyser field in the world. The muddy volcanoes are a spectacular phenomenon. They are the eruption of gases released by hydrocarbons layers deep beneath, which train water and mud on their way to the earth's surface.

The Amethyst Mountain in the Northwestern section of Yellowstone is a vertical section of 600m in the rock, offering the occasion to see 12 successive fossil forests, covered by volcanic dust. There are also three big rivers: Missouri, Snake River, and Yellowstone River. Yellowstone River also forms an impressive canyon. It is an awesome view. There are also many different animals: Elks, Bisons, Black bears, wolves, coyotes, bald eagles, and pelicans. The waters are populated with trout.

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The Fukushima accident in 2011 at the Fukushima Daiichi plant in northern Japan. The site is on Japan’s Pacific coast. Within the umbrella of those negatively affected, it looked at the extent of exposures of different groups, and those exposed to higher doses of radiation. Japan experienced two natural disasters within five hours. A historically massive earthquake struck Japan, which gets a significant percentage of its electricity from nuclear power plants. All affected plants shut down by inserting control rods into the cores.

The power plants were not constructed to be able to handle a seismic reaction that large and a tsunami of the size seen. There was under-engineering of the backup systems, which caused the loss of these plants. The earthquake was the largest ever to hit Japan. The quake knocked out the plant's electric power, halting cooling to its reactions.

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Volcanic activity occurs due to partial melting of the rock in the earth's mantle. The melted part is a lower density than the rest of the mantle material, and it flows toward the surface causing a buildup of pressure which is forced out of the volcano and the area erupts and lava spews forth from the opening. Volcanoes erupt because of density and pressure.

The lower density of the magma is relative to the surrounding rocks, which causes it to rise. It will flow to the surface or to a depth that is determined by the density of the magma and the weight of rocks above it. As the magma rises, bubbles start to form from the gas dissolved in the magma. The gas bubbles exert tremendous pressure. This pressure helps bring magma up and forces it into the air.

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The Appalachian Mountains are a cultural region in the Eastern United States that stretches from the Belle Isle in Canada to Cheaha Mountain in Alabama. The cultural part of Appalachia typically refers only to the central and southern portions of the range. The Appalachians have been a source of enduring myths and distortions regarding isolation, temperament, and behavior of its inhabitants.

Appalachia has been struggling for a long time with poverty. The construction of dams provides cheap electricity and implementation of better farming practices. Steps have been taken to ensure better health care and educational opportunities to the region.

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The scientists know that Mount Saint Helens was going to erupt because of the seismic activity around it. The earthquakes were because of the lava building up inside the volcano, and it started to inflate like a balloon. In May 1980, the balloon exploded. Mount Saint Helens erupted in Skamania County, which is in the state of Washington. Around the Cascade Mountain Range, a small continental plate pushes underneath the edge of the Northern American Plate. By the 1950's, scientists knew there was something likely brewing underneath the surface.

In the Cascades, a series of small earthquakes occurred in March of 1980. A few days later, a size 4.2 earthquake rocked the state of Washington and the earthquake activity extended over the next few days, causing volcanic tremors. Geologists saw this as a sign that magma was moving underneath the surface volcano.

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Typically, it would take about thirty years. However, it is estimated that it will take even longer. The Chernobyl incident was the worst nuclear accident in history. Radioactive cesium is not disappearing from the environment as quickly as predicted.

The time for half the cesium to disperse from the local environment through processes such as migration, weathering, and removal by organisms is also typically 30 years or less, but the amount of cesium in the soil near Chernobyl is not decreasing nearly that fast. Scientists have calculated that what they call cesium’s “ecological half-life”, the time for half the cesium to disappear from the environment is between 180 and 320 years.

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The long struggle back to normalcy is ongoing at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, located in Japan. Many workers are making slow progress in cleaning up the contaminated land surroundings. It's infamous reactor; evacuees are deciding whether to return to homes sealed off since the accident five years ago.

The power plant remains a dangerous disaster zone, with workers just beginning the complicated, risky job of locating the melted fuel and figuring out how to remove it. The dilemma lies in determining how much radiation in their former home is safe. The Fukushima's plant owner is being sued over plans to end compensation payments for those who choose not to return home. Specific areas will remain off limits indefinitely.

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Radiation exposure has caused genetic damage and increased mutation rates in many organisms in the Chernobyl region. Some species have shown high mutation rates, such as the barn swallow, the icterine warbler, and the Eurasian blackcap. Birds and mammals at Chernobyl have cataracts in their eyes and smaller brains. Many of the birds have deformed sperm, and up to 40 percent are sterile.

Tumors are evident on some birds in high radiation areas. So are developmental abnormalities in some plants and insects. Populations of many organisms in highly contaminated regions have shrunk, and all major groups of animals, including birds, butterflies, dragonflies, bees, grasshoppers, spiders, and others are less abundant. Individual organisms exposed to radiation suffer serious harm. Overall, there is a decline in abundance and diversity of birds, and some species are more sensitive to radiation than others.

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