Central America is exposed to a variety of natural hazards such as earthquake, volcanic eruption, landslides, and floods. This study considers Central America as a group of six countries: Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Panama, on the basis of their geographical, cultural, historical, and geopolitical backgrounds. The region, located on four conjunct tectonic plates, with 24 active volcanoes, and in the path of hurricanes, has experienced 348 disasters in the last 40 years (from 1980 to 2010), resulting in 29,007 deaths (725 on an average per year) and US$16.5 billion in economic losses (US$400 million per year) (Emergencies Disasters Data Base (EM-DAT), 2009). This amount of US$16.5 billion in economic losses is nearly three times greater than Nicaragua's GDP in 2009 (US$6.14 billion), according to Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) (2010) data. High disaster risk in the region is also demonstrated from the World Bank (2005) indicating that all six Central American countries rank among the top 35 countries in the world at high mortality risk from multiple hazards.
Hori, T. and Shaw, R. (2012), "Chapter 14 Profile of Community-Based Disaster Risk Management in Central America", Shaw, R. (Ed.) Community-Based Disaster Risk Reduction (Community, Environment and Disaster Risk Management, Vol. 10), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 277-300. https://doi.org/10.1108/S2040-7262(2012)0000010020Download as .RIS
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