Free sample essay on Severe Environmental Disasters

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Working Thesis Statement
Vancouver Island, Canada, is an earthquake prone area. In 1946, the island was hit by a 7.3 magnitude earthquake, which left the people's environment and social organization in a disastrous state. This study of the effects of the earthquake on the island's residents will establish the social and political implications of this catastrophe.
The researcher will use a sociological approach to this study, where the sociological and political effects of the earthquake will be researched. Besides, the data collected in the field will be subject to qualitative and quantitative analyses.
    1. Background of the study
    2. Statement of the problem
    3. Objective of the study
    4. Significance of the study
    5. Limitations of the study
    6. Scope of the study
    7. Literature review
    1. Research approaches
    2. Research instruments
    3. Data collection techniques
    4. Data analysis and presentation


Every time a catastrophe occurs in any part of the world, it leaves its victims socially derailed. It always causes a major shift in the arrangement of the society, permanently changing the perception of the society on the local and international scene. It was due to this that the researcher purposed to take this study, to establish the effects of earthquakes on Vancouver Island, Canada; for a deeper understanding of these natural phenomena that are argued to have a human origin. On 23rd of June, 1946, Vancouver Island was hit by a 7.3 magnitude earthquake, which was recorded as the worst earthquake to have hit that Island, and Canada in general. This earthquake damaged chimneys in Union Bay, Comox and Cumberland, leading to two deaths. Politically, the earthquake had an effect on the island's functioning. The political system of the country was thus, blamed for failing to prepare the country, for such catastrophes. By this, the International Community had a shift in the perception of the responsibility and the political will of the Vancouver leadership. A study of this earthquake will establish its effects to the people and the general environment; both political and social (Morrison, 2001).

The study will take a sociological perspective, where the social and political effects of the disaster will be studied. The researcher intends to collect the data by way of observation, administering questions to the affected individuals and taking photographs of scenes; like dilapidated homes, to determine and take as evidence, the effects of the disaster. As research instruments, cameras, questionnaires and interviews will be used. The reference materials and works that have been consulted include Richard Morrison's Natural Disasters (2001), S. Bullen's Tthe political effects of earthquakes in Vancouver island: The power of Earthquakes (1994) and Gard S.'s Without Warning (2001). These texts are the main reference sources, since they deeply discuss the effect of this earthquake and are narrowed to Vancouver Island as the area of study. These are the resources that have enough information that discusses broadly, my coverage for the research.


Emerald, D. (2008) Social perspectives on disasters in SE Asia. 17(3), 1-6.
  1. Emerald, D. (2009) Disaster Prevention and Management. 18 (1), 20-23.

  2. Laura, K. (2007, August). Catastrophe Preparedness: Ready For The Worst? Business Information Group 24(671), 21-25.

Sara P., Helen Y., & David A. (2000, June) Disasters. 53(34), 21-32.

White, C. (2006, April). The spirit of disobedience. Atlantic, 312(1871), 31-40.

Bullen, S. (1994). The Power of Earthquakes. Wayland: Hove.

Gard, S. (2001) Without warning. Port Melbourne:  Heinemann.

Knight, L., Moores, E., Beckett, A. (1999) Volcanoes and earthquakes. St Leonards, NSW: Allen and Unwin.

Morisson, R. (2001) Natural disasters. Port Melbourne: Heinemann.

Vincent, C. (1999). Evolutionary Catastrophes: The Science of Mass Extinctions. Cambridge: Cambridge university press.