• The Rohingya are the largest group of stateless persons in the world. Systematic discrimination and human rights abuses in Myanmar has led to mass migration; most aim to reach Malaysia in risky sea voyages, falling prey to human trafficking. Many don’t make it to their destination and end up detained in transit countries, many die on the way. Protection is by far the largest concern, including gender based violence and child protection.
In Southeast Asia, an estimated of 94,000 migrants have made the dangerous voyage by sea since 2014, including 31,000 departures in the first half of 2015.
• Tropical Storm VAMCO reached the coasts of the provinces of Quang Nam (pop. 1.47 million) and Quang Ngai (pop. 1.24 million), central Vietnam, in the afternoon of 14 September (UTC). After the landfall it continued moving west, over Quang Nam province and southern Lao, where it weakened into a Tropical Depression. In the morning of 15 September it started moving over eastern Thailand, weakening into a Low Pressure System.
• Severe weather has caused extensive damage in southern Asian countries over the past couple of weeks.
Using an innovative approach with GIS and remote sensing, the Oak Ridge National Laboratory LandScanTM is the community standard for global population distribution. At approximately 1 km resolution LandScan is the finest resolution global population distribution data available and represents an ambient population (average over 24 hours).
This map shows the average amount of precipitation falling in a year, based on approximately 50 years of data. The figures shown do not therefore represent the amount of precipitation that may occur in any given year.
Temperatures in the Asia-Pacific region can go very high with central India reaching 50oC or more. The Tibetan plateau rarely exceeds 20oC because of its high elevation.
These temperatures are based on average highs over a period of approximately 50 years. Maximum temperatures in the region may therefore be from different months of the year and a temperature in any given location may exceed these maximums.
Köppen-Geiger Climate Classification
The highly referenced climate classification map of Wladimir Köppen was published for the first time in 1900 and updated in its latest version by Rudolf Geiger in 1961.
Climate classification is applied to a broad range of topics in climate and climate change research as well as in physical geography, hydrology, agriculture, biology and educational aspects.
The Human Footprint
Human influence on the earth’s land surface is a global driver of ecological processes on the planet, en par with climatic trends, geological forces and astronomical variations. The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) and the Center for International Earth Science Information Network (CIESIN) at Columbia University joined together to systematically map and measure the human influence on the earth’s land surface today.
Elevation and Bathymetry
The region is home to the world's highest mountain, Mount Everest (Sagarmatha in Nepal and Chomolungma in China) at 8,848m, as well as the deepest surveyed point in the oceans,
Challenger Deep in the Marianas Trench at 10,911m.
The Asia-Pacific region contains a diverse array of cultures, environments, and societies. One of the fastest growing economic regions in the world, it is also the most disaster-prone. While natural disasters affect the region frequently, as this region continues along its path of development, regional partnerships will be essential in developing the capacities of countries to reduce risk and vulnerability and to respond to disasters.