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Shanghai denies vulnerability to serious flooding

Published on Aug 27, 2012 3:09 PM
 
A woman walks along the flooded banks near the Huangpu River in Shanghai on Aug 2, 2012. Authorities in Shanghai are contesting claims that the city is vulnerable to serious flooding, noting the city's work to build protective bulwarks in recent years and its capability of moving residents out of harm's way amid emergencies.  -- PHOTO: REUTERS

(CHINA DAILY/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Authorities in Shanghai are contesting claims that the city is vulnerable to serious flooding, noting the city's work to build protective bulwarks in recent years and its capability of moving residents out of harm's way amid emergencies.

The city's ability to control floods came under scrutiny after a study appearing in the American journal Natural Hazards suggested that it is more vulnerable to serious flooding than eight other big coastal cities in the world.

Scientists from Britain and the Netherlands used a new measure called the Coastal City Flood Vulnerability Index to study Shanghai; Buenos Aires, Argentina; Kolkata, India; Casablanca, Morocco; Dhaka, Bangladesh; Manilla, Philippines; Marseille, France; Osaka, Japan; and Rotterdam, Netherlands. They collected social, economic, political and administrative data for those places, and considered their geological features.

The authors of the study found that Shanghai is the most exposed of those cities to coastal floods, a result partly of its long coastline. "From a social perspective, the population close to the coastline is high, but the city does not have high resilience and the number of shelters is low compared to the population density," they wrote.

 
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