Academic journal article Current Politics and Economics of Northern and Western Asia

Social Security Add, Control, and Management for Floods in Taiwan under Extreme Climate between 1994 and 2013

Academic journal article Current Politics and Economics of Northern and Western Asia

Social Security Add, Control, and Management for Floods in Taiwan under Extreme Climate between 1994 and 2013

Article excerpt

Introduction

For human society, the consumption of fuel resources is most fossil fuels and the combustion of this type of fuels account for the largest release source of CO2 and also the major reason of greenhouse effect. The global accumulation of greenhouse gases affects the world climate not just now, but also in the future. The influence of climate change has been well studied. Evidence shows that the greenhouse effect causes global climate change which results in droughts, floods, crop failure, and waves of refugees. Many scientists conclude that anthropogenic (human-caused) global climate change to be the most important environmental issue presently. Climate change has irreversibly altered our lives - ecological, financial, social, political, and even cultural changes [1-4].

Over the past decade, the drastic increase in rainfall and floods in some places has led to direct losses of human lives and property. This trend of drastic rainfall and drought, also known as extreme climate, is a unique issue by the definition, and thus the special characteristic of extreme climate should be taken into consideration while governing topics related to them.

Taiwan locates in the Asian monsoon region with rich rainfall. The annual rainfall in Taiwan reaches 2500 mm, it approaches 3000 - 5000 mm in the mountain area which cover approximately 70 percent of area. The highest elevation at these mountains is 3952 m. The downstream slopes of most riverbeds lay between 1/500 and 1/200, but the upstream slopes of most rivers are greater than 1/100 because the river length is short and the upstream altitude is relatively high [3].

Because of the special landscape and weather characteristics, Taiwan has been tormented by floods for long, especially in the past decade. Tung and Pai [3] studied the cultivated land loss and product loss due to agricultural disasters and pointed out that that the loss occurred frequently from 1991 to 2011 in Taiwan. The average cultivated land loss between 2001 and 2011 gave on 1.8 times more loss than the average cultivated land loss between 1991 and 2000. The standard deviation from 2001 to 2011 was approximately 4.0 times than that from 1991 to 2000. The average product loss between 2001 and 2011 gave on 1.1 times more loss than the average product loss between 1991 and 2000. The standard deviation from 2001 to 2011 was about 1.1 times than that from 1991 to 2000. It indicated that the magnitude and frequency of agricultural disasters increased significantly in the past ten years [3].

Torrential rain is a serious challenge for the drainage system, river embankments and levees. Extreme rainfall which exceeds the protection level of river embankments or capacity standard of the drainage system raises the flood risk. Inundation more frequently occurs at flood-prone areas. The recovery and reconstruction efforts are hampered because of increasing vulnerability [4].

When dealing with topics related to floods under climate change, governments cannot rely upon traditional problem-solving methods. Contrarily, governments need to survey comprehensive knowledge from diverse sectors. Besides, governments need to construct nontraditional framework between central and local governments to conquer the new flood challenge. Most studies predict varying impacts of floods under climate change. However, efforts to adapt the flood impact under climate change need to be implemented as swiftly as possible. Any postpone will result in massive costs and damages.

Therefore, the objectives of this study were listed as follows. First, the laws related to disasters prevention and social add were surveyed, including the Disaster Prevention and Protection Act (DPPA) and Public Assistance Act (PAA). Second, the times of flood and amount of social security add were investigated for the past two decades. Third, adaptation strategy to flood under climate change was proposed.

Laws Related to Disasters Prevention and Social Adds

Disaster Prevention and Protection Act

For establishing a complete disaster prevention and protection system and enhancing the functions, to protect the safety of people's lives, bodies, properties and conserve the homeland, the DPPA was enacted in 2000. …

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