Shanghai, the largest city in China, has been named the most vulnerable to coastal flooding in a report from Natural Hazards Magazine. It singled out Shanghai among the nine main coastal cities around the world.
The study included the coastal cities of Buenos Aires, Calcutta, Casablanca, Dhaka, Manila, Marseille, Osaka, Rotterdam and Shanghai.
Researchers believe out of all these cities, Shanghai’s ability to cope with a flood is the lowest–even weaker than economically poorer cities like Dhaka.
The report included social, economic, political and administrative factors.
Some Shanghai residents feel there is little hope if a tsunami was to hit and are worried about recent flooding in Beijing.
[Ms. Shi, Shanghai Resident]:
“August is the most worrying time for us, there are so many issues with flooding. We worry about it every time there’s a hurricane. Flooding would be dreadful for Shanghai if there were a tsunami. If that takes place, it would be useless to try to evacuate. There would be no point trying, because everyone would just die.”
[Mr. Wang, Shanghai Resident]:
“[Floods] took place in the 80s and 90s. At that time there were a few times when there were rainstorms in Shanghai, water was everywhere. In my opinion it was comparable to the July 21st flooding in Beijing. This time a typhoon has attacked Shanghai...I feel pretty worried because there are so many people and the [population] density is so high in Shanghai.”
The report says, (quote) “a high length of coastline and high value of river discharge” is one factor to Shanghai’s vulnerability to flooding. The study notes that European countries are better prepared for coastal flooding, and have the ability to “bounce back quickly”.
The report was conducted by English and Dutch scientists. It also received support from UNESCO and the Dutch government.