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Shi X.,National Hazard Marine Mitigation Service | Liu S.,National Hazard Marine Mitigation Service | Yang S.,Beijing Normal University | Liu Q.,National Hazard Marine Mitigation Service | And 2 more authors.
Natural Hazards | Year: 2015

Storm surges account for increasing economic losses and casualties (including death and missing) because of sea-level rise and growing population in coastal areas. China is one of the several countries severely affected by storm surge disasters. In this study, the annual variation and geographical distribution of direct economic losses and casualties caused by storm surge in coastal areas of China were analyzed based on the losses database. The results show that: (1) the frequency of the tropical storm surges over the past 65 years has risen remarkably with a significant trend, while the frequency of extra-tropical storm surges does not display this trend; (2) the annual casualties caused by storm surge have decreased, with Zhejiang, Fujian, and Guangdong provinces suffering the highest casualties from storm surge; and (3) the annual direct economic losses present no obvious trend, with Guangdong, Zhejiang, and Fujian experiencing the highest direct economic losses from storm surge. Taking GDP and the gross ocean production into consideration, their loss rates show an obvious decreasing trend over the past 25 years. Although population and exposed value have increased rapidly in coastal areas, the casualties and economic loss rate show a decreasing trend, suggesting that disaster reduction measures by the Chinese government have had a significant effect in storm surge disaster prevention. © 2015, Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht.

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