Philippines Flooding Highlights Dangers of Fast Urbanization

Philippines Flooding Highlights Dangers of Fast Urbanization

Nearly two weeks of continuous rain have caused floods to sweep through Manila as well as nearby areas, killing at least 23 people so far and affecting nearly 2 million.

The deadly floods in the Philippine capital are the latest in a series of flooding-related disasters to strike the region. Last month, the heaviest rainfall to hit Beijing, China, in six decades forced the evacuation of 650,000 people from their homes, while three months of heavy rains in Bangkok, Thailand, last year claimed at least 500 lives.

According to Edward Blakely, honorary professor of urban policy at the University of Sydney’s United States Studies Center and a disaster-recovery expert who led recovery management for New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina, the devastation caused by these floods results not only from the amount of rainfall, but also from a lack of planning, coordination and enforcement in terms of urbanization.

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