Assessment of Quantitative Standards for Mega-Drought Using Data on Drought Damages
drought continuous period
Environmental effects of industries and plants
Renewable energy sources
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AbstractAmong natural disasters, droughts can affect a large area for a prolonged period of time. If a drought happens, an appropriate response requires a lot of time and manpower from beginning to end, and continuous management is necessary for further prevention. Using data on drought damages from 1900 to 2018 in 148 countries in six continents around the world, this study was able to set quantitative standards for mega-droughts. According to data on the status of annual drought damages, the frequency of drought damages (1900–2018) and the subsequent damage costs (1965–2018) are increasing, while human losses (1900–2018) are decreasing. Additionally, Africa had the highest frequency of drought damages, while Africa and Asia were ranked at the top of the list in terms of human losses and damage costs, respectively. Droughts persisted for continuous periods ranging from 1 to 17 years, and the total number of cases involving drought damage was estimated to be 600 in total, with total human losses of 11,731,294 people and total accumulated damage costs of $17,367,007,000. This study provided quantitative standards for the frequency of drought damages, human losses, and damage costs for mega-droughts in consideration of continuous drought periods. This study set the quantitative standards for a mega-drought as follows: (1) if drought damages continue to occur in a country for more than seven years, (2) if human losses continue to occur in a country for more than seven years, and (3) if mean annual damage costs of $17,000,000 continue to occur in a country for more than seven years.
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