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Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 14, issue 5 | Copyright
Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 14, 1223-1244, 2014
© Author(s) 2014. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Research article 22 May 2014

Research article | 22 May 2014

Integrated tsunami vulnerability and risk assessment: application to the coastal area of El Salvador

P. González-Riancho1, I. Aguirre-Ayerbe1, O. García-Aguilar1, R. Medina1, M. González1, I. Aniel-Quiroga1, O. Q. Gutiérrez1, J. A. Álvarez-Gómez2, J. Larreynaga3, and F. Gavidia3 P. González-Riancho et al.
  • 1Environmental Hydraulics Institute IH Cantabria, Universidad de Cantabria, C/Isabel Torres no. 15, Parque Científico y Tecnológico de Cantabria, 39011 Santander, Spain
  • 2Department of Geodynamics, Faculty of Geology, Complutense University of Madrid, C/ José Antonio Novais, s/n, 28040 Madrid, Spain
  • 3Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources, Kilómetro 5 1/2 Carretera a Santa Tecla, Calle Las Mercedes, San Salvador, El Salvador

Abstract. Advances in the understanding and prediction of tsunami impacts allow for the development of risk reduction strategies for tsunami-prone areas. This paper presents a tsunami vulnerability and risk assessment for the case study of El Salvador, the applied methodology dealing with the complexity and variability of coastal zones by means of (i) an integral approach to cover the entire risk-related process from the hazard, vulnerability and risk assessments to the final risk management; (ii) an integrated approach to combine and aggregate the information stemming from the different dimensions of coupled human and natural systems; and (iii) a dynamic and scale-dependent approach to integrate the spatiotemporal variability considerations. This work also aims at establishing a clear connection to translate the vulnerability and risk assessment results into adequate target-oriented risk reduction measures, trying to bridge the gap between science and management for the tsunami hazard. The approach is applicable to other types of hazards, having been successfully applied to climate-change-related flooding hazard.

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