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down institutional and coordination mechanisms for effective disaster management (DM) at the national, state, and district levels. As mandated by this Act, the Government of India (GoI) created a multi-tiered institutional system consisting of the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), headed by the Prime Minister, the State Disaster Management Authorities (SDMAs) by the Chief Ministers and the District Disaster Management Authorities (DDMAs) by the District Collectors and co-chaired by elected representatives of the local authorities of the respective districts. Indias high earthquake risk and vulnerability is evident from the fact that about 59 per cent of Indias land area could face moderate to severe earthquakes. During the period 1990 to 2006, more than 23,000 lives were lost due to 6 major earthquakes in India, which also caused enormous damage to property and public infrastructure. During the International Decade for Natural Disaster Reduction (IDNDR) observed by the United Nations (UN) in the 1990s, India witnessed several earthquakes like the Uttarkashi earthquake of 1991, the Latur earthquake of 1993, the Jabalpur earthquake of 1997, and the Chamoli earthquake of 1999. These were followed by the Bhuj earthquake of 26 January 2001 and the Jammu & Kashmir earthquake of 8 October 2005. All these major earthquakes established that the casualties were caused primarily due to the collapse of buildings. However, similar high intensity earthquakes in the United States, Japan, etc., do not lead to such enormous loss of lives, as the structures in these countries are built with structural mitigation measures and earthquake-resistant features. Critical Areas of Concern for the Management of Earthquakes in India

The critical areas of concern for the management of earthquakes in India include the: Lack of awareness among various stakeholders about the seismic risk; Inadequate attention to structural mitigation measures in the engineering education syllabus; Inadequate monitoring and enforcement of earthquake-resistant building codes and town planning

Bye-laws; Absence of systems of licensing of engineers and masons; Absence of earthquake-resistant features in non-engineered construction in suburban and rural

Areas; Lack of formal training among professionals in earthquake-resistant construction practices; and Lack of adequate preparedness and response capacity among various stakeholder groups. There is an increasing need being felt for a more systematic, holistic and integrated effort to address the critical areas of concern responsible for the weak seismic safety measures in India. These Guidelines have been drawn up to address these critical areas of concern and to provide the foundation for seismic safety. This emphasizes the need for strict compliance of town planning bye-laws and earthquakeresistant building codes in India. The Guidelines of National Disaster Management Act have been prepared, taking into account an analysis of the critical gaps responsible for accentuating the seismic risk and of factors that would contribute towards seismic risk reduction, to enable various stakeholder agencies to address the critical areas for improving seismic safety in India. These Guidelines have been prepared to reduce the impact of earthquakes in the short term and the earthquake risk in the medium and long term.

These Guidelines consist of three broad sections: (a) The context and approach to the management of earthquakes in India; (b) An outline of the specific Guidelines; and (c) a broad overview of the DM plans to be prepared by the central ministries and departments, state governments, other stakeholders and nodal agencies. (a) The first section covers the following: An overview of the earthquake risk and vulnerability in India; A brief review of the status of earthquake management efforts; An overview of the recent initiatives of the government for ensuring earthquake risk reduction; An identification of the critical areas which require special attention to ensure that the overall strategy for the management of earthquakes in India is holistic, integrated and supportive to the development aspirations of building a modern nation;

An outline of a rational RM framework to institutionalize systems and processes to make earthquake safety in India a sustainable strategy; An introduction to the six pillars of earthquake management, with prescribed time lines for the effective implementation of the various activities; and An overview of the issues which need to be addressed to ensure the effective implementation of the plans formulated based on these Guidelines. (b) The second section outlines each of the six pillars for effective earthquake management in India. (c) The third section provides an overview of the DM plans to be prepared by the central ministries and departments, state governments, other stakeholders and nodal agencies. These Guidelines emphasize the need for carrying out the structural safety audit of existing lifeline structures and other critical structures in earthquake-prone areas, and carrying out selective seismic strengthening and retrofitting. Apart from these two sets of initiatives which are aimed at improving the seismic safety of the built environment, these Guidelines also emphasise the need for strengthening enforcement and regulation, awareness and preparedness, capacity development (including education, training, R&D, and documentation) and earthquake response. As mentioned earlier, these Guidelines have been prepared through a series of consultations with key stakeholder groups in New Delhi, Kanpur and Mumbai. These consultations identified the critical factors responsible for the high seismic risk in India and prioritized six sets of critical interventions, which have been presented in these Guidelines as the six pillars of earthquake management. They will help to: 1. Ensure the incorporation of earthquake resistant design features for the construction of new structures. 2. Facilitate selective strengthening and seismic retrofitting of existing priority and lifeline structures in earthquake-prone areas. 3. Improve the compliance regime through appropriate regulation and enforcement. 4. Improve the awareness and preparedness of all stakeholders. 5. Introduce appropriate capacity development interventions for effective earthquake management (including education, training, R&D, and documentation). 6. Strengthen the emergency response capability in earthquake-prone areas. These Guidelines envisage two phases for ensuring seismic safety. During Phase I, which is scheduled to commence with immediate effect and conclude by 31 December 2008, the various stakeholders will prepare their DM plans and carry out specific activities aimed at seismic risk reduction. The activities to be carried out during Phase I include the following:

Preparing DM plans; revising town planning bye-laws and adopting model bye-laws; disseminating earthquake-resistant building codes, the National Building Code 2005 and other safety codes. Training trainers in professional and technical institutions; training professionals like engineers, architects, and masons in earthquake-resistant construction. Launching demonstration projects and public awareness campaigns to disseminate earthquake resistant techniques, seismic safety and seismic risk reduction. Enforcing and monitoring compliance of earthquake-resistant building codes, town planning bye-laws and other safety regulations; establishing an appropriate mechanism for compliance review of all construction designs submitted to ULBs; undertaking mandatory technical audit of structural designs of major projects by the respective competent authorities. Developing an inventory of the existing built environment; assessing its seismic risk and vulnerability by carrying out a structural safety audit of all critical lifeline structures. Developing and undertaking seismic strengthening and retrofitting standards for existing critical lifeline structures, initially as pilot projects and for other critical lifeline structures in a phased manner. Increasing the awareness of earthquake risk and vulnerability and seismic risk reduction measures to various stakeholders through sensitisation workshops, seminars and public awareness campaigns. Preparing DM plans by schools, hospitals, super malls, entertainment multiplexes, etc. and carrying out mock drills for creating greater public awareness. Strengthening the Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) network. Streamlining the mobilisation of communities, civil society partners, the corporate sector and other stakeholders. Preparing national, state and district DM plans, with specific reference to the management of earthquakes. Preparing community and village level DM plans, with specific reference to management of earthquakes. Carrying out the vulnerability mapping of earthquake-prone areas and creating inventory of resources for effective response. Carrying out earthquake safety education in educational institutions and conducting mock drills. Strengthening earthquake safety R&D in professional technical institutions. Preparing documentation on lessons from previous earthquakes and ensuring their wide

dissemination. Developing an appropriate mechanism for licensing and certification of professionals in earthquake-resistant construction techniques by collaborating with professional bodies. Developing appropriate risk transfer instruments by collaborating with insurance companies and financial institutions. Setting up National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) battalions, training and equipping them. Setting up State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) battalions in high seismic risk states, training and equipping them. Strengthening the medical preparedness for effective earthquake response. These activities will be initiated by the central ministries and departments and state governments, other key stakeholders and nodal agencies concerned as parallel processes. A review of the DM plans and activities carried out during Phase I will be undertaken, from January to June 2009. Thereafter, the plans will be revised and updated, with special emphasis on areas that need greatest attention to achieve the objective of institutionalising seismic risk reduction. The activities of Phase I will continue during this period and be further intensified in Phase II. The implementation of Phase II will commence from 1 January 2010.

Environmental Management Plan (EMP)

Preparation of environmental management plan is required for formulation, implementation and monitoring of environmental protection measures during and after commissioning of projects.The plans should indicate the details as to how various measures have been or are proposed to be taken including cost components as may be required.Cost of measures for environmental safeguards should be treated as an integral component of the project cost and environmental aspects should be taken into account at various stages of the projects:

Conceptualization:preliminary environmental assessment Planning:detailed studies of environmental impacts and design of safeguards Execution:implementation of environmental safety measures Operation:monitoring of effectiveness of built-in safeguards

The management plans should be necessarily based on considerations of resource conservation and pollution abatement,some of which are:

Liquid Effluents Air Pollution Solid Wastes Noise and Vibration Occupational Safety and Health Prevention,maintenance and operation of Environment Control Systems House-Keeping

Human Settlements Transport Systems Recovery - reuse of waste products Vegetal Cover Disaster Planning Environment Management Cell

1. Liquid Effluents o Effluents from the industrial plants should be treated well to the standards as prescribed by the Central/State Water Pollution Control Boards. o Soil permeability studies should be made prior to effluents being discharged into holding tanks or impoundments and steps taken to prevent percolation and ground water contamination. o Special precautions should be taken regarding flight patterns of birds in the area.Effluents containing toxic comppounds,oil and grease have been known to cause extensive death of migratory birds.Location of plants should be prohibited in such type of sensitive areas. o Deep well burial of toxic effluents should not be resorted to as it can result in resurfacing and ground water contamination.Re-surfacing has been known to cause extensive damage to crop and livestocks. o In all cases,efforts should be made for re-use of water and its conservation. 2. Air Pollution o The emission levels of pollutants from the different stacks,should conform to the pollutin control standards prescribed by Central or State Boards. o Adequate control equipment should be installed for minimising the emission of pollutants from the various stacks. o In-plant control measures should be taken to contain the fugitive emissions. o Infrastructural facilities should be provided for monitoring the stack emissions and measuring the ambient air quality including micro-meteorological data(wherever required) in the area. o Proper stack height as prescribed by the Central/State Pollution Control Boards should be provided for better dispersion of pollutants over a wider area to minimise the effect of pollution. o Community buildings and townships should be built up-wind of plant with onehalf to one kilometer greenbelt in adition to physiographical barrier. 3. Solid Wastes o The site for waste disposal should be checked to verify permeability so that no contamimants percolate into the ground water or river/lake. o Waste disposal areas should be planned down-wind of villages and townships. o Reactive materials should be disposed of by immobilising the reactive materials with suitable additives. o The pattern of filling disposal site should be planned to create better landscape and be approved by appropriate agency and the appropriately pretreated solid wastes should be disposed according to the approved plan. o Intensive programs of tree plantation on disposal areas should be undertaken.

4. Noise and Vibration Adequate measures should be taken for control of noise and vibrations in the industry. 5. Occupational Safety and Health Proper precautionary measures for adopting occupational safety and health standards should be taken. 6. Prevention,maintenance and operation of Environment Control Systems o Adequate safety precautions should be taken during preventive maintenance and shut down of the control systems. o A system of inter-locking with the production equipment should be implemented where highly toxic compounds are involved. 7. House - Keeping Proper house-keeping and cleanliness should be maintained both inside and outside of the industry. 8. Human Settlements o Residential colonies should be located away from the solid and liquid waste dumping areas.Meteorological and environmental conditions should be studied properly before selecting the site for residential areas in order to avoid air pollution problems. o Persons who are displaced or have lost agricultural lands as a result of locating the industries in the area,should be properly rehabilitated. 9. Transport Systems o Proper parking places should be provided for the trucks and other vehicles by the industries to avoid any congestion or blocking of roads. o Siting of industries on the highways should be avoided as it may add to more road accidents because of substantial increase in the movements of heavy vehicles and unauthorised shops and settlements coming up around the industrial complex. o Spillage of chemicals/substances on roads inside the plant may lead to accidents.Proper road safety signs both inside and outside the plant should be displayed for avoiding road accidents. 10. Recovery - reuse of waste products Efforts should be made to recycle or recover the waste materials to the extent possible.The treated liquid effluents can be conveniently and safely used for irrigation of lands,plants and fields for growing non-edible crops. 11. Vegetal Cover Industries should plant trees and ensure vegetal cover in their premises.This is particularly advisable for those industries having more than 10 acres of land. 12. Disaster Planning Proper disaster planning should be done to meet any emergency situation arising due to fire,explosion,sudden leakage of gas etc.Fire fighting equipment and other safety appliances should be kept ready for use during disaster/emergency situation including natural calamities like earthquake/flood. 13. Environment Management Cell Each industry should identify within its setup a Department/Section/Cell with trained personnel to take up the model responsibility of environmental management as required for planning and implementation of the projects.

Article: Epidemics after natural disasters.

The relationship between natural disasters and communicable diseases is frequently misconstrued. The risk for outbreaks is often presumed to be very high in the chaos that follows natural disasters, a fear likely derived from a perceived association between dead bodies and epidemics. However, the risk factors for outbreaks after disasters are associated primarily with population displacement. The availability of safe water and sanitation facilities, the degree of crowding, the underlying health status of the population, and the availability of healthcare services all interact within the context of the local disease ecology to influence the risk for communicable diseases and death in the affected population. We outline the risk factors for outbreaks after a disaster, review the communicable diseases likely to be important, and establish priorities to address communicable diseases in disaster settinqs. Natural disasters are catastrophic events with atmospheric, geologic, and hydrologic origins. Disasters include earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, landslides, tsunamis, floods, and drought. Natural disasters can have rapid or slow onset, with serious health, social, and economic consequences. During the past 2 decades, natural disasters have killed millions of people, adversely affected the lives of at least 1 billion more people, and resulted in substantial economic damages (1). Developing countries are disproportionately affected because they may lack resources, infrastructure, and disasterpreparedness systems. Deaths associated with natural disasters, particularly rapid-onset disasters, are overwhelmingly due to blunt trauma, crush-related injuries, or drowning. Deaths from communicable diseases after natural disasters are less common. Dead Bodies and Disease The sudden presence of large numbers of dead bodies in the disaster-affected area may heighten concerns of disease outbreaks (2), despite the absence of evidence that dead bodies pose a risk for epidemics after natural disasters (3). When death is directly due to the natural disaster, human remains do not pose a risk for outbreaks (4). Dead bodies only pose health risks in a few situations that require specific precautions, such as deaths from cholera (5) or hemorrhagic fevers Despite these facts, the risk for outbreaks after disasters is frequently exaggerated by both health officials and the media. Imminent threats of epidemics remain a recurring theme of media reports from areas recently affected by disasters, despite attempts to dispel these myths .

Displacement: Primary Concern The risk for communicable disease transmission after disasters is associated primarily with the size and characteristics of the population displaced, specifically the proximity of safe water and functioning latrines, the nutritional status of the displaced population, the level of immunity to vaccine-preventable diseases such as measles, and the access to healthcare services (8). Outbreaks are less frequently reported in disaster-affected populations than in conflict-affected populations, where two thirds of deaths may be from communicable diseases (9). Malnutrition increases the risk for death from communicable diseases and is more common in conflict-affected populations, particularly if their displacement is related to long-term conflict (10). Although outbreaks after flooding (11) have been better documented than those after earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, or tsunamis (12), natural disasters (regardless of type) that do not result in population displacement are rarely associated with outbreaks (8). Historically, the largescale displacement of populations as a result of natural disasters is not common (8), which likely contributes to the low risk for outbreaks overall and to the variability in risk among disasters of different types. Risk Factors for Communicable Disease Transmission Responding effectively to the needs of the disaster-affected population requires an accurate communicable disease risk