What are Natural Hazards?

A natural hazard is a natural event (for example, flood, volcanic eruption, earthquake, tropical storm) that threatens people or has the potential to cause damage, destruction and death.
Natural hazards are most commonly classified by the physical processes that caused them. Tectonic hazards are created through the movement of the Earth’s tectonic plates. Hazards to humans created in the atmosphere, such as tropical storms, droughts and tornadoes, are atmospheric hazards. Hazards originating on or near the Earth’s surface, such as landslides, flooding and mudflows are considered geomorphological hazards. Hazards posed by living things, e.g. forest fires, are biological hazards.
The different types of natural hazards include:
- Geophysical hazards (e.g., earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, and tsunamis).
- Hydrological hazards (e.g., floods).
- Meteorological hazards (e.g., cyclones and storms).
- Climatological hazards (e.g., droughts and wildfires).
- Biological hazards (e.g., pandemics and epidemics).