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Selection: with tag risk-assessment [97 articles] 


Guidance on a harmonised framework for pest risk assessment and the identification and evaluation of pest risk management options by EFSA

EFSA Journal, Vol. 8, No. 2. (1 February 2010), 1495,


The Scientific Panel on Plant Health was requested by EFSA to develop a guidance document on a harmonised framework for risk assessment of organisms harmful to plants and plant products and the identification and evaluation of risk management options. The document provides guiding principles on assessment practices and approaches when assessing risks to plant health to support the decision-making process under Council Directive 2000/29/EC. The framework aims at implementing the fundamental principles of risk assessment as laid down in Regulation (EC) ...


Anthropogenic forcings and associated changes in fire risk in Western North America and Australia during 2015-2016

Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society In Explaining Extreme Events of 2016 from a Climate Perspective, Vol. 99, No. 1. (January 2018), pp. S60-S64,


Extreme vapor pressure deficits (VPD) have been associated with enhanced wildfire risk. Using one model, we found for 2015/16 that human influences quintupled the risk of extreme VPD for western North America and increased the risk for extratropical Australia. [Excerpt: Introduction] In 2016, about 3.6 million hectares of land burned in the United States and Canada (NIFC 2017; NFD 2017). In Canada, a wildfire southwest of Fort McMurray, Alberta, caused the largest wildfire evacuation in Alberta’s history and destroyed 2400 homes ...


The role of community policies in defensible space compliance

Forest Policy and Economics, Vol. 11, No. 8. (02 December 2009), pp. 570-578,


Recently enacted federal and state policies provide incentives, including financial assistance, for local jurisdictions to manage risks associated with wildland fire. This has led to an array of local-level policies designed to encourage homeowners to create fire-safe landscapes. This qualitative study collected data from focus group interviews with homeowners in three diverse communities and used the theory of reasoned action to interpret dimensions of local-level wildland fire policies that are associated with homeowner acceptance of or compliance with defensible space guidelines ...


Risk externalities and the problem of wildfire risk

Journal of Urban Economics, Vol. 64, No. 2. (September 2008), pp. 488-495,


Homeowners living in the wildland–urban interface must decide whether or not to create a defensible space around their house in order to mitigate the risk of a wildfire destroying their home. Risk externalities complicate this decision; the risk that one homeowner faces depends on the risk mitigation decisions of neighboring homeowners. This paper models the problem as a game played between neighbors in a wildland–urban interface. The model explains why sub-optimal investment in defensible space is likely and provides insights into ...


Thinking of wildfire as a natural hazard

Society & Natural Resources, Vol. 17, No. 6. (1 July 2004), pp. 509-516,


Natural hazards theory with its emphasis on understanding the human–hazard interaction has much to offer in better understanding how individuals respond to the wildfire hazard. Ironically, very few natural hazards studies have actually looked at wildfires, despite the insights the field might offer. This report is structured around four interrelated questions that are often heard from individuals involved with wildfire management. Examining these four items through the natural hazards lens can demonstrate just a few of the ways the field can ...


Assessing risk and adaptation options to fires and windstorms in European forestry

Mitigation and Adaptation Strategies for Global Change In Mitigation and Adaptation Strategies for Global Change, Vol. 15, No. 7. (10 July 2010), pp. 681-701,


Risks can generally be described as the combination of hazard, exposure and vulnerability. Using this framework, we evaluated the historical and future development of risk of fire and wind damage in European forestry at the national level. Fire risk is expected to increase, mainly as a consequence of an increase in fire hazard, defined as the Fire Weather Index in summer. Exposure, defined as forest area, is expected to increase slightly as a consequence of active afforestation and abandonment of marginal ...


Sensitivity and evaluation of current fire risk and future projections due to climate change: the case study of Greece

Natural Hazards and Earth System Science, Vol. 14, No. 1. (23 January 2014), pp. 143-153,


Current trends in the Mediterranean climate, and more specifically in Greece, indicate longer and more intense summer droughts that even extend out of season. In connection to this, the frequency of forest fire occurrence and intensity is on the rise. In the present study, the Canadian Fire Weather Index (FWI) is used in order to investigate the relationship between fire risk and meteorological conditions in Greece. FWI is a meteorologically based index designed in Canada and used worldwide, including the Mediterranean ...


Climatological risk: wildfires

In Science for disaster risk management 2017: knowing better and losing less, Vol. 28034 (2017), pp. 294-305


[Excerpt: Conclusions and key messages] There is a vast amount of information on wildfires at local, regional and global scales. However, problems remain at different scales in terms of harmonising or standardising practices for the assessment and management of wildfire risk. [\n] Resilience theory is providing a suitable framework by which to explain abrupt changes in socioecological systems. The importance of community participation and building social capital through collective learning and governance mechanisms has been highlighted as a required basis for building disaster resilience (Aldunce et al., 2015; Aldunce et al., 2016; Montiel and Kraus, 2010; O’Brien et al., ...


  1. SCION, 2009. Fire behavioiur app. .
  2. NFPA, 2016 Firewise Communities Program. .
  3. GOV.UK, n.d. LH1: Management of lowland heathland .
  4. KWFW, 2014. Wildfire Threat Analysis (WTA):NERC-funded scoping project with Forestry Commission. .
  5. HM Tresaury, 2013. Orange book: management of risk - principles and concepts. .
  6. Cabinet Office, 2015. National Risk

A global index for mapping the exposure of water resources to wildfire

Forests, Vol. 7, No. 1. (13 January 2016), 22,


Wildfires are keystone components of natural disturbance regimes that maintain ecosystem structure and functions, such as the hydrological cycle, in many parts of the world. Consequently, critical surface freshwater resources can be exposed to post-fire effects disrupting their quantity, quality and regularity. Although well studied at the local scale, the potential extent of these effects has not been examined at the global scale. We take the first step toward a global assessment of the wildfire water risk (WWR) by presenting a ...


Seven myths of risk

Risk Management In Risk Management, Vol. 7, No. 2. (01 April 2005), pp. 7-17,


Communication between experts and the public has turned out to be unusually difficult in the field of risk research. These difficulties are closely connected to a series of recalcitrant misconceptions of risk and its social preconditions. In this paper, seven of the most pernicious myths of risk are exposed, namely: first, that ‘risk’ must have a single, well-defined meaning; second, that the severity of risks should be judged according to probability-weighted averages of the severity of their outcomes; third, that decisions ...


Analyzing spatiotemporal changes in wildfire regime and exposure across a Mediterranean fire-prone area

Natural Hazards In Natural Hazards, Vol. 71, No. 3. (2014), pp. 1389-1418,


We evaluated the spatiotemporal changes in wildfire regime and exposure in a fire-prone Mediterranean area (Sardinia, Italy) in relation to changes in ignition patterns, weather, suppression activities, and land uses. We also used wildfire simulations to identify fine-scale changes in wildfire exposure of important features on the island. Sardinia experienced a sharp reduction in fire number and area burned between the periods 1980–1994 and 1995–2009. Despite this decrease, losses and fatalities from wildfires continue. This suggests that localized areas and seasons ...


Risk and resilience lessons from Venice

Environment Systems and Decisions, Vol. 34, No. 3. (2014), pp. 378-382,


In the history of disasters in Venice, there are implications for modern times in terms of complex systems management and emerging threats, in particular from examples of risk management and resilience achieved by the Venetian state during outbreaks of the plague. In fourteenth century Venice, risk assessment the way we practice it today would fail to provide meaningful recommendations to reduce the casualty rate of the plague epidemic because the cause and transmission of the disease was not understood. Instead, a ...


Global trends in satellite-based emergency mapping

Science, Vol. 353, No. 6296. (14 July 2016), pp. 247-252,


Over the past 15 years, scientists and disaster responders have increasingly used satellite-based Earth observations for global rapid assessment of disaster situations. We review global trends in satellite rapid response and emergency mapping from 2000 to 2014, analyzing more than 1000 incidents in which satellite monitoring was used for assessing major disaster situations. We provide a synthesis of spatial patterns and temporal trends in global satellite emergency mapping efforts and show that satellite-based emergency mapping is most intensively deployed in Asia ...


Estimation of live fuel moisture content from MODIS images for fire danger assessment in Southern Gran Chaco

IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Applied Earth Observations and Remote Sensing (2016), pp. 1-11,


Moisture content of live fuels (LFMC) is one of the main factors determining fuel flammability and, therefore, a key indicator of fire danger. In this study, we modeled the relationship between spectral indices derived from satellite imagery and field estimations of LFMC in the Chaco Serrano subregion; then, we analyzed the relationship between fire danger estimations based on LFMC calculations and fire activity. Empirical LFMC models fitted for grasslands, Chaco Serrano forests, and glossy privet forests may be considered very accurate ...


Development of a framework for fire risk assessment using remote sensing and geographic information system technologies

Ecological Modelling, Vol. 221, No. 1. (10 January 2010), pp. 46-58,


Forest fires play a critical role in landscape transformation, vegetation succession, soil degradation and air quality. Improvements in fire risk estimation are vital to reduce the negative impacts of fire, either by lessen burn severity or intensity through fuel management, or by aiding the natural vegetation recovery using post-fire treatments. This paper presents the methods to generate the input variables and the risk integration developed within the Firemap project (funded under the Spanish Ministry of Science and Technology) to map wildland ...


Human-caused wildfire risk rating for prevention planning in Spain

Journal of Environmental Management, Vol. 90, No. 2. (February 2009), pp. 1241-1252,


This paper identifies human factors associated with high forest fire risk in Spain and analyses the spatial distribution of fire occurrence in the country. The spatial units were 6,066 municipalities of the Spanish peninsular territory and Balearic Islands. The study covered a 13-year series of fire occurrence data. One hundred and eight variables were generated and input to a dedicated Geographic Information System (GIS) to model different factors related to fire ignition. After exploratory analysis, 29 were selected to build a ...


Integrating geospatial information into fire risk assessment

International Journal of Wildland Fire, Vol. 23, No. 5. (2014), 606,


Fire risk assessment should take into account the most relevant components associated to fire occurrence. To estimate when and where the fire will produce undesired effects, we need to model both (a) fire ignition and propagation potential and (b) fire vulnerability. Following these ideas, a comprehensive fire risk assessment system is proposed in this paper, which makes extensive use of geographic information technologies to offer a spatially explicit evaluation of fire risk conditions. The paper first describes the conceptual model, then ...


A global review of remote sensing of live fuel moisture content for fire danger assessment: moving towards operational products

Remote Sensing of Environment, Vol. 136 (September 2013), pp. 455-468,


[Highlights] [::] We review satellite LFMC products and their operational use for fire assessment. [::] The literature is dominated by statistical and physical model-based methods. [::] Statistical methods are site-specific. [::] The parameterization of physical models is complex. [::] Challenges: quantifying estimation errors and linking LFMC to fire behavior/risk. [Abstract] One of the primary variables affecting ignition and spread of wildfire is fuel moisture content (FMC). Live FMC (LFMC) is responsive to long term climate and plant adaptations to drought, requiring remote sensing for monitoring of spatial and ...


The Australian flammability monitoring system

In Brisbane 2016: annual conference (2016)


Live fuel moisture content (LFMC) is one of the primary variables affecting bushfire flammability. We have developed the first Australia-wide flammability monitoring system for operational prediction of LFMC and flammability using satellite data. [Excerpt: Conclusion and future work] [::] We developed the prototype of the first Australia-wide Flammability Monitoring System for operational prediction of LFMC and flammability using satellite observations. [::] LFMC is not the only variable that is related to fire occurrence, and therefore the importance of other factors (e.g. fire weather and ...


Increased wind erosion from forest wildfire: implications for contaminant-related risks

Journal of Environment Quality, Vol. 35, No. 2. (2 February 2006), pp. 468-478,


Assessments of contaminant-related human and ecological risk require estimation of transport rates, but few data exist on wind-driven transport rates in nonagricultural systems, particularly in response to ecosystem disturbances such as forest wildfire and also relative to water-driven transport. The Cerro Grande wildfire in May of 2000 burned across ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa Douglas ex P.&C. Lawson var. scopulorum Englem.) forest within Los Alamos National Laboratory in northern New Mexico, where contaminant transport and associated post-fire inhalation risks are of concern. ...


The International Plant Sentinel Network: a tool for regional and national plant protection organizations

EPPO Bulletin, Vol. 46, No. 1. (April 2016), pp. 156-162,


[Excerpt:Introduction] A 2011 global survey of botanic gardens and arboreta, which included 204 respondents from 146 institutes, revealed that the botanic garden community has the potential to play a significant role in safeguarding plant health. However, responding institutes cited a lack of available training, resources and coordination to support any such work (Kramer & Hird 2011). Since its launch in November 2013, the International Plant Sentinel Network (IPSN) has been working to provide this support and illustrate the usefulness of such a ...


A horizon scan of global conservation issues for 2016

Trends in Ecology & Evolution, Vol. 31, No. 1. (January 2016), pp. 44-53,


This paper presents the results of our seventh annual horizon scan, in which we aimed to identify issues that could have substantial effects on global biological diversity in the future, but are not currently widely well known or understood within the conservation community. Fifteen issues were identified by a team that included researchers, practitioners, professional horizon scanners, and journalists. The topics include use of managed bees as transporters of biological control agents, artificial superintelligence, electric pulse trawling, testosterone in the aquatic ...


Assessing and managing the current and future pest risk from water hyacinth, (Eichhornia crassipes), an invasive aquatic plant threatening the environment and water security

PLoS ONE, Vol. 11, No. 8. (11 August 2016), e0120054,


Understanding and managing the biological invasion threats posed by aquatic plants under current and future climates is a growing challenge for biosecurity and land management agencies worldwide. Eichhornia crassipes is one of the world’s worst aquatic weeds. Presently, it threatens aquatic ecosystems, and hinders the management and delivery of freshwater services in both developed and developing parts of the world. A niche model was fitted using CLIMEX, to estimate the potential distribution of E. crassipes under historical and future climate scenarios. ...


Armed-conflict risks enhanced by climate-related disasters in ethnically fractionalized countries

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 113, No. 33. (16 August 2016), pp. 9216-9221,


[Significance] Ethnic divides play a major role in many armed conflicts around the world and might serve as predetermined conflict lines following rapidly emerging societal tensions arising from disruptive events like natural disasters. We find evidence in global datasets that risk of armed-conflict outbreak is enhanced by climate-related disaster occurrence in ethnically fractionalized countries. Although we find no indications that environmental disasters directly trigger armed conflicts, our results imply that disasters might act as a threat multiplier in several of the world’s ...


The potential predictability of fire danger provided by numerical weather prediction

Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology, Vol. 55, No. 11. (5 August 2016), pp. 2469-2491,


A global fire danger rating system driven by atmospheric model forcing has been developed with the aim of providing early warning information to civil protection authorities. The daily predictions of fire danger conditions are based on the US Forest Service National Fire Danger Rating System (NFDRS), the Canadian forest service Fire Weather Index Rating System (FWI) and the Australian McArthur (MARK-5) rating systems. Weather forcings are provided in real time by the European Centre for Medium range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) forecasting ...


Estimation of live fuel moisture content from MODIS images for fire risk assessment

Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, Vol. 148, No. 4. (April 2008), pp. 523-536,


This paper presents a method to estimate fuel moisture content (FMC) of Mediterranean vegetation species from satellite images in the context of fire risk assessment. The relationship between satellite images and field collected FMC data was based on two methodologies: empirical relations and statistical models based on simulated reflectances derived from radiative transfer models (RTM). Both models were applied to the same validation data set to compare their performance. FMC of grassland and shrublands were estimated using a 5-year time series ...


(INRMM-MiD internal record) List of keywords of the INRMM meta-information database - part 30

(February 2014)
Keywords: inrmm-list-of-tags   receptivity   record-to-update-or-delete   red-list   redd   redistributable-scientific-information   reference-manual   reforestation   refugia   regeneration   regional-climate   regional-climate-models   regional-scale   regression   regression-tree-analysis   regulating-services   reinforcement   reinforcement-learning   reinventing-weels   reiteration   relative-distance-similarity   relative-distance-similarity-ancillary   remote-sensing   renewable-energy   renewable-energy-directive   repeatability   repellent-species   replicability   reporting   representative-concentration-pathways   reproducibility   reproducible-research   reproduction   reproductive-effort   resampling   research-funding   research-funding-vs-public-outcome   research-management   research-metrics   research-team-size   reservoir-management   reservoir-services   resilience   resin   resistance   resources-exploitation   respiration   restoration   resurvey-of-semi-permanent   retraction   review   review-publication   review-scopus-european-biodiversity-indicators   revision-control-system   rewarding-best-research-practices   rhamnus-cathartica   rhamnus-catharticus   rhamnus-frangula   rhamnus-saxatilis   rhamnus-spp   rhizophora-apiculata   rhizophora-mangle   rhododendron   rhododendron-arboreum   rhododendron-ferrugineum   rhododendron-periclymenoides   rhododendron-ponticum   rhododendron-spp   rhododendron-viscosum   rhopalicus-tutela   rhus-spp   rhus-typhina   rhyacionia-buoliana   rhyacionia-frustrana   rhyssa-persuasoria   rhytisma   ribes-alpinum   ribes-rubrum   ribes-uva-crispa   ring-analysis   ring-width-chronologies   ringspot-virus   riparian-ecosystem   riparian-forest   riparian-zones   risk-analysis   risk-assessment   risk-reduction   river-flow   river-networks   river-restoration   roads   robert-hooke   robinia-pseudoacacia   robinia-spp   robust-modelling   rockfalls   rodent   romania   root-deterioration  


List of indexed keywords within the transdisciplinary set of domains which relate to the Integrated Natural Resources Modelling and Management (INRMM). In particular, the list of keywords maps the semantic tags in the INRMM Meta-information Database (INRMM-MiD). [\n] The INRMM-MiD records providing this list are accessible by the special tag: inrmm-list-of-tags ( ). ...


Killer landslides: the lasting legacy of Nepal's quake

Nature, Vol. 532, No. 7600. (25 April 2016), pp. 428-431,


A year after a devastating earthquake triggered killer avalanches and rock falls in Nepal, scientists are wiring up mountainsides to forecast hazards. [Excerpt] [...] “It’s a real problem for reconstruction,” says Tara Nidhi Bhattarai, a geologist at Tribhuvan University in Kathmandu and chief scientist of Nepal’s National Reconstruction Authority — an agency established last year to manage the recovery efforts. “What are the safe places to rebuild, in a landscape that is evolving?” [\n] To answer that, geoscientists are wiring up the mountains ...


A multicriteria risk analysis to evaluate impacts of forest management alternatives on forest health in Europe

Ecology and Society, Vol. 17, No. 4. (2012),


Due to climate change, forests are likely to face new hazards, which may require adaptation of our existing silvicultural practices. However, it is difficult to imagine a forest management approach that can simultaneously minimize all risks of damage. Multicriteria decision analysis (MCDA) has been developed to help decision makers choose between actions that require reaching a compromise among criteria of different weights. We adapted this method and produced a multicriteria risk analysis (MCRA) to compare the risk of damage associated with ...


Response to scientific and technical information provided by an NGO on Xylella fastidiosa

EFSA Journal, Vol. 13, No. 4. (2015), 4082,


Following the publication of the Scientific Opinion by EFSA’s PLH Panel which assessed the risk to plant health posed by Xylella fastidiosa in the EU territory and evaluated risk reduction options, EFSA received a request for an urgent response to scientific and technical information provided by an Italian non-governmental organisation (NGO). The NGO claimed that X. fastidiosa is not the cause of olive tree decline in Lecce Province in Southern Italy, but only an endogenous element present in the trees that ...


Towards a cross-domain interoperable framework for natural hazards and disaster risk reduction information

Natural Hazards (2015), pp. 1-19,


According to the United Nations’ International Strategy for Disaster Reduction, “natural hazards are processes or phenomena that may cause loss of life, injury or other health impacts, property damage, loss of livelihoods and services, social and economic disruption, or environmental damage”. They are at the interface between human and natural systems. From this perspective, natural hazards are a multidimensional domain including environmental issues, the private and public sector and citizens and governance ranging from local to supranational. The vast amount of ...


Landslide hazard assessment: summary review and new perspectives

Bulletin of Engineering Geology and the Environment, Vol. 58, No. 1. (1999), pp. 21-44,


This paper deals with several aspects of the assessment of hazard and risk of landsliding. In recent years the interest in this topic has increased greatly and there are many technical papers dealing with this subject in the literature. This article presents a summary review and a classification of the main approaches that have been developed world-wide. The first step is the subdivision between qualitative and quantitative methods. The first group is mainly based on the site-specific experience of experts with ...


An analysis of pest risk from an Asian longhorn beetle (Anoplophora glabripennis) to hardwood trees in the European community

Crop Protection, Vol. 21, No. 8. (September 2002), pp. 635-645,


The risk posed by the wood-boring pest, Anoplophora glabripennis, to hardwood tree species in the EC was assessed using an internationally developed pest risk assessment scheme. The assessment reviewed information concerning the current distribution, biology and economic impact of A. glabripennis in Asia and North America together with recent European interceptions. Hosts grow across much of Europe and, using the computer program CLIMEX, southern regions of Europe were highlighted as areas where climate is most suitable for the pest's establishment. There ...


Weather in the Canadian forest fire danger rating system - A user guide to national standards and practices

No. BC-X-177. (1978)


Weather elements affecting the calculation of the Canadian Forest Fire Weather Index (FWI) are described. How to choose an adequate weather station site for fire danger rating observations, how to expose each weather instrument correctly, and the consequences of errors in weather data on the FWI are outlined. Weather instrument standards of accuracy and required precision in taking fire weather readings are described. Adjustment procedures are provided to users for such things as anemometers exposed in clearings too small to give representative ...


Evaluating the effects of changes in landscape structure on soil erosion by water and tillage

Landscape Ecology In Landscape Ecology, Vol. 15, No. 6. (2000), pp. 577-589,


Landscape structure, or the spatial organization of different land units, has an impact on erosion and sedimentation on agricultural land. However, current erosion models emphasize the temporal, and less the spatial, variability of relevant parameters so that the effects of changes in landscape structure have hitherto not been studied in detail. Therefore, a spatially distributed water and tillage erosion model that allows the incorporation of landscape structure is presented. The model is applied to three study sites in the Belgian Loam ...


Scientific Opinion on the risks to plant health posed by Xylella fastidiosa in the EU territory, with the identification and evaluation of risk reduction options

EFSA Journal, Vol. 13, No. 1. (January 2015), 3989,


[Abstract] The EFSA Panel on Plant Health conducted a pest risk assessment and an evaluation of risk reduction options for Xylella fastidiosa. X. fastidiosa has been detected in olive in the EU with a distribution restricted to the region of Apulia in Italy and is under official control. X. fastidiosa has a very broad host range, including many common cultivated and wild plants. All xylem fluid-feeding insects in Europe are considered to be potential vectors. Philaenus spumarius (Hemiptera: Aphrophoridae), a polyphagous ...


Science for Disaster Risk Reduction - JRC thematic report



This report aims at giving a comprehensive overview of the work of the Commission’s in-house science service, the Joint Research Centre (JRC), in relation to disaster risk reduction and response. The JRC develops tools and methodologies to help in all phases of disaster management, from preparedness and risk assessment to recovery and reconstruction through to forecasting and early warning. ...


Estimating the effects of water-induced shallow landslides on soil erosion

IEEE Earthzine, Vol. 7, No. 2. (November 2014), 910137,


Rainfall-induced landslides and soil erosion are part of a complex system of multiple interacting processes, and both are capable of significantly affecting sediment budgets. These sediment mass movements also have the potential to significantly impact on a broad network of ecosystems, in terms of their health, functionality and the services they provide. To support the integrated assessment of these processes it is necessary to develop reliable modelling architectures. This paper proposes a semi-quantitative integrated methodology for a robust assessment of soil ...


  1. W.J. van Asch, "Water erosion on slopes and landsliding in a Mediterranean landscape," Ph.D dissertation, Utrecht Univ., 1980
  2. P.H. Van Beek, "Assessment of the Influence of Changes in Landuse and Climate on Landslide Activity in a Mediterranean Environment," Ph.D dissertation, Utrecht Univ., Utrecht, 200
  3. A. Cochrane, and Acharya, G., "Changes in sediment delivery from hillslopes affected by shallow landslides and soil armouring," Journal of Hydrology (New Zealand), vol. 50, no. 1,

Critical slowing down as early warning for the onset of collapse in mutualistic communities

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 111, No. 49. (09 December 2014), pp. 17546-17551,


[Significance] Little is known on whether structurally diverse ecological networks may respond abruptly to anthropogenic stress and even less on our ability to detect such responses in advance. By simulating mutualistic communities en route to a tipping point, we show how critical slowing-down indicators may be used as early warnings for the collapse of ecological networks. Our findings not only confirm the existence of the generic dynamical signatures of tipping points in ecological networks but also suggest a promising way for identifying ...


Dealing with femtorisks in international relations

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 111, No. 49. (09 December 2014), pp. 17356-17362,


The contemporary global community is increasingly interdependent and confronted with systemic risks posed by the actions and interactions of actors existing beneath the level of formal institutions, often operating outside effective governance structures. Frequently, these actors are human agents, such as rogue traders or aggressive financial innovators, terrorists, groups of dissidents, or unauthorized sources of sensitive or secret information about government or private sector activities. In other instances, influential “actors” take the form of climate change, communications technologies, or socioeconomic globalization. ...


Strong influence of El Niño Southern Oscillation on flood risk around the world

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 111, No. 44. (04 November 2014), pp. 15659-15664,


[Significance] El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) affects hydrological processes around the globe. However, little is known about its influence on the socioeconomic impacts of flooding (i.e., flood risk). We present, to our knowledge, the first global assessment of ENSO’s influence on flood risk in terms of economic damage and exposed population and gross domestic product. We show that reliable flood risk anomalies exist during ENSO years in basins spanning almost half of Earth’s surface. These results are significant for flood-risk management. ...


Managing the risks of organizational accidents



This is a practical book aimed at those whose daily task it is to think about and manage or regulate the risks of hazardous technologies. The book is not targeted at any one domain, but attempts to identify general tools and principles that are applicable to all organizations facing dangers of one sort or another. This could include banks and building societies just as much as nuclear power plants, oil exploration and production, chemical process plants, and air, sea and rail ...


Risk assessment of Gibberella circinata for the EU territory and identification and evaluation of risk management options

EFSA Journal, Vol. 8, No. 6. (2010), 1620,


The Panel on Plant Health was asked to provide a risk assessment for Gibberella circinata Nirenberg and O’Donnell, for the EU territory, and to identify and evaluate effectiveness of risk management options in reducing the risk posed by the organism. G. circinata is presently not listed in Council Directive 2000/29/EC. Outbreaks of the organism have been reported in EU (in Spain, Italy, France and Portugal). The risk assessment indicates that, in parts of the European Union, there is risk of pitch ...


Evaluation of a pest risk analysis on Thaumetopoea processionea L., the oak processionary moth, prepared by the UK and extension of its scope to the EU territory

EFSA Journal, Vol. 7, No. 6. (2009), 1195,


This opinion, published on 26th August 2009, replaces the previous version published on 29th June 2009 [2]. Following a request from the European Commission, the Panel on Plant Health was asked to deliver a scientific opinion on a pest risk analysis for Thaumetopoea processionea L. prepared by the UK. The Panel was also asked to consider in its opinion the plant health risk of T. processionea to the whole EU territory. The oak processionary moth, Thaumetopoea processionea, is established in Europe and feeds ...


Architecture of Environmental Risk Modelling: for a faster and more robust response to natural disasters

In 3rd Conference of Computational Interdisciplinary Sciences (2014), pp. 46-57


Demands on the disaster response capacity of the European Union are likely to increase, as the impacts of disasters continue to grow both in size and frequency. This has resulted in intensive research on issues concerning spatially-explicit information and modelling and their multiple sources of uncertainty. Geospatial support is one of the forms of assistance frequently required by emergency response centres along with hazard forecast and event management assessment. Robust modelling of natural hazards requires dynamic simulations under an array of ...

Visual summary


Transgenic crops: Mexican GM maize rift is not so simple

Nature, Vol. 512, No. 7513. (13 August 2014), pp. 136-136,


Excerpt] You rightly point out that the issue of genetically modified (GM) maize (corn) is more sensitive and complex in Mexico than in other countries (Nature511, 1617; 201410.1038/511016a), but you owe readers a more in-depth and balanced view. The rift in Mexico's scientific community over GM maize is [...] a result of the commercial push to plant GM maize before the benefits and risks, and the costs to Mexican society, have been fully assessed. The possibility of producing maize that is tolerant to ...


Decision Evaluation of Response Strategies in Emergency Management Using Imprecise Assessments

Journal of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, Vol. 7, No. 1. (1 January 2010),


This paper focuses on the decision evaluation of different response strategies in emergency management utilizing decision analysis with imprecise information. A method for the selection of response strategies in emergency management, as well as a model for the representation of catastrophic consequences, are proposed. In emergency management decision problems, the available estimates of probabilities, utilities, costs, and priority weights are often subject to large degrees of uncertainty and imprecision. When uncertainty prevails in the input data and large societal values are ...


Reducing the risks posed by natural hazards and climate change: the need for a participatory dialogue between the scientific community and policy makers

Environmental Science & Policy, Vol. 14, No. 7. (22 November 2011), pp. 730-733,


In the last two decades we witnessed a progressive shift in the approach towards the reduction of the impact of natural hazards. From a general reactive approach, focusing on strengthening disaster response mechanisms, we have moved to proactive approaches. There has been recognition that each element of society, from public institutions to private sector, from community-based organizations to every single individual, can make a difference by acting before disasters strike to reduce the associated risks of human and economic losses. This ...


A new approach to risk: the implications of E3

Risk Management, Vol. 11, No. 1. (February 2009), pp. 30-43,


The fundamental thesis of this paper is that no matter how much physical science and technology are involved in complex systems, no system is ever purely or solely physical or technical. Certainly no system of which we are aware is purely scientific or technical in its operation or management. Furthermore, while research on and the modeling of complex systems usually rely heavily on the consideration of technological variables and processes, they typically fail to consider the contributions of individual psychological, organizational ...


Environmental risk and assessment modelling - Scientific needs and expected advancements

In Air, Water and Soil Quality Modelling for Risk and Impact Assessment (2007), pp. 29-44,


Environmental risk and impact assessment and prediction modelling is one of the most important instruments in the environmental security management and preparedness, and it needs further development in the quickly changing world and society. Most of the previous studies in this field considered, as a rule, only separate aspects of the risk and impact assessments. New realities and problems in the environmental security, supercomputer facilities, request a new generation of the assessments and prediction tools for the risk and impact assessments. ...

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