Haiti

Analysis of Multiple Natural hazards in Haiti (NATHAT)

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Report prepared by the Government of Haiti, with support from the World Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank, and the United Nations System

On January 12, 2010, Haiti was rocked by a 7.0-magnitude earthquake that caused unprecedented hu-man, social, economic, and environmental destruction across the country and the Latin American and Caribbean region. This earthquake ranks among the most deadly and devastating in the world's recent history and deals a crippling blow to Haiti's recovery process. The earthquake compounded the hy-drometeorological and political upheavals of the past two decades, causing the population additional suffering and presenting an impediment to the restoration of stability and renewal of Haiti's develop-ment momentum.

This study aims to identify the spatial and temporal scope as well as the relative intensity of the most severe natural hazards in Haiti. Evidently, the degree of precision and effectiveness of the results of this study directly depend on the quantity and quality of data available. It is hoped that the analyses presented will help to steer emergency recovery efforts and risk management, in addition to land use and development planning. However, these results are preliminary and will be subject to ongoing re-view in the coming months.

The most imminent natural hazards have been associated with precipitation caused by polar fronts from the northern hemisphere, in addition more rainfall is expected from tropical cyclones and waves, the Intertropical Convergence Zone, convective and orographic activity. El Niño/ENSO has had the tendency to delay the arrival of the rainy season and if extended, can even create drought conditions. Models also indicate that El Niño activity could increase the number and intensity of cyclones; howev-er, it is not possible to predict the route the cyclones will take and if they will approach or even hit the island of Hispaniola.

It is also clear that other natural hazards such as earthquakes, landslides, torrential mudflows, drought, and tsunamis must always be taken into account. As a result, the vision for risk management, which includes emergency management, should be centered around a multi-hazards situation.