Title Climate, Environment and Disaster: The Case of El Nino
Type Publication
Abstract A paper by Michael Glantz written for the Natural Disasters and Policy Response in Asia: Implications for Food Security Conference in 29 April - 1 May 1999 at Asia Center at Harvard University. Since El Nino is related to many natural disaster droughts and floods, applying El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO) information to specific needs of countries' human activities is suggested. Actions to accomplish this should include: 1) Identifying regional, national and local climate-related impacts associated with ENSO; 2) Focusing on interactions between climate-related processes and human activities and 3) Incorporating ENSO information in training and public education activities. Climate, Environment and Disaster: The Case of El Nino suggests a reliable El Nino forecasting system, if used appropriately, can be helpful in mitigating aspects of climate-related food production problems while preventing other aspects. The policy lesson is that while we are never going to change the weather, natural hazards do not have to become natural disasters.
Participants Michael Glantz
Start Date 1999
Keywords ENSO
Forecast Use & Value
Sustainable Development
Research Themes


"Because the pathway to sustainability cannot be charted in advance, it will have to be navigated through trial and error and conscious experimentation. The urgent need is to design strategies and institutions that can better integrate incomplete knowledge with experimental action into programs of adaptive management and social learning."
NRC, Our Common Journey (1999)