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Have you ever considered what makes a natural event, like an earthquake, become a disaster? Earthquakes don’t always cause problems. But when they happen in areas where many people live (if they aren’t prepared), or in vulnerable environments (like mountains), they can cause disasters.

Through a system of mountain management, scientists and governments aim to reduce the costs of disasters, such as loss of life or ecosystem destruction. However, not everyone agrees on the best way to do this. We investigated two different mountain management methods – one that focuses on the ecosystem, and one that focuses on the community of people living near mountains. We used the 2015 Nepal earthquakes as an example. 

We came up with 4 different principles (guidelines) that combine varying forms of mountain management. These can be used to address the challenges facing mountains and make them a safer place to live. We can prevent natural events like earthquakes from becoming disasters.

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Scientific topic
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AP Environmental science topics
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Scientific methods
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February 2021

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