HOW TO DEFEND OURSELVES FROM "ACTS OF GOD"

By William Markiewicz

As I am not an expert, I donít have any concrete proposal. I acknowledge that it may be very difficult. My next question is: do we have a choice? Acts of God are calamities that up to now have been pretty hopeless. I have in mind the heavy monsoon rains and resulting floods, earthquakes, tsunamis, tornadoes, landslides Ö etc.

Floods. Starting with floods, we know that the first danger hits the population living in lowlands. Pakistan, China, are countries with varied topography. The valley people are the first and most exposed victims. Only rich and lucky individuals can help themselves; for the rest of the population, no matter how libertarian we are, the main job will belong to governments.

Populations should keep away from lowlands. Otherwise you are always subject to acts of God. It doesnít mean that low grounds should simply be abandoned but they can be used for purposes where the managing population is reduced to a minimum. The vast lowlands should be used for agricultural purposes and husbandry of species less threatened by floods, and any infrastructure that can endure and function when immersed in water.

Earthquakes. Japanese architects and others make great progress in design and construction of buildings that resist earthquakes. Flexibility and resistance may be increased. We learned that the Germans increased structural endurance by adding metallic poles of steel and iron into the walls to make them stronger under bombing.

Landslides. To fight landslides, trees and trees should be planted. There are species of roots that create networks to hold the ground together.

Tornadoes. Underground structures give the best protection. There are cities built with underground services that comprise supplementary cities. This method may be also used in smaller localities and, as in mining, miles long underground corridors would connect various localities. Precise maps would describe this kind of layout so no matter how ruined the surface, people underground would know where to gather for rescue, well informed about where rescuers would dig.

Proud metropolis, beautiful landscape and living conditions may be sacrificed but, to avoid sensational tragedies in the media, we may come back to the initial question: do we have a choice?

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