Schutz vor dem Zorn der Natur

Nach dem Tsunami im indischen Ozean, den tödlichen Dürreperioden in Niger und anderen afrikanischen Ländern, den Hurrikanen Katrina und Rita, den Schlammlawinen in Mittelamerika und den Waldbränden in Portugal ist das Erdbeben in Pakistan die Fortsetzung einer Reihe von Naturkatastrophen, die in diesem Jahr über uns hereinbrachen.

Es besteht kein Zusammenhang zwischen diesen Ereignissen und die Menschheit ist diesen natürlichen Gefahren seit jeher ausgeliefert. Und doch sind darin gewisse Gemeinsamkeiten - und Warnungen an uns alle - zu finden: Wir sind auf diese massiven Schocks, von denen mit Sicherheit noch mehr zu erwarten sind, nicht vorbereitet.

Durch das massive Bevölkerungswachstum ist ein immer größerer Teil der Menschheit neuen Bedrohungen ausgesetzt. Momentan leben 6,5 Milliarden Menschen auf diesem Planeten. Das sind um fast vier Milliarden mehr als vor fünfzig Jahren. Angaben der Vereinten Nationen zufolge wird die Weltbevölkerung bis 2050 auf etwa 9,1 Milliarden Menschen angewachsen sein.

Aufgrund dieser steigenden Bevölkerungszahlen strömen immer mehr Menschen in Gebiete, die anfällig für Naturkatastrophen sind. In Küstenregionen, die durch Sturm und steigende Wasserspiegel bedroht sind, in erdrutsch- und erdbebengefährdete Gebirgsregionen oder in Gebiete, wo es aufgrund von Wassermangel zu Dürreperioden, Hunger und Krankheiten kommt. Üblicherweise werden die Ärmsten der Armen in die am stärksten gefährdeten Gegenden abgedrängt – wo sie auch sterben, wenn die Naturkatastrophen über sie hereinbrechen.

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