Natural disasters

In early morning darkness, workers prepare heavy machinery for the day as rebuilding work continues on the beach area of Seaside Heights and Seaside Park, N.J., Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2013. Tuesday marks the one-year anniversary of Superstorm Sandy. A large Sandy-related fire on the boardwalk in September has slowed progress in the area.

Mel Evans/AP

In early morning darkness, workers prepare heavy machinery for the day as rebuilding work continues on the beach area of Seaside Heights and Seaside Park, New Jersey. Tuesday marks the one-year anniversary of hurricane Sandy.

Think smoke from a bush fire fills the s...Think smoke from a bush fire fills the sky near Faulconbridge in the Blue Mountains on October 24, 2013.  Thousands of largely volunteer firefighters have been battling infernos for more than a week across the state of New South Wales that have destroyed over 200 homes, with the Blue Mountains region west of Sydney the focal point.   AFP PHOTO / Saeed KHANSAEED KHAN/AFP/Getty Images

Saeed Khansaeed Kan/AFP/Getty

Thick smoke from a bush fire fills the sky near Faulconbridge in the Blue Mountains on Thursday. Thousands of largely volunteer firefighters have been battling infernos for more than a week across the state of New South Wales. The fires have destroyed more than 200 homes, with the Blue Mountains region west of Sydney the focal point. 

Firefighters work to contain fires from a resident's backyard at Faulconbridge in the Blue Mountains. Firefighters have deliberately merged two major blazes in southeastern Australia in a desperate battle to manage the advancing infernos as weather conditions worsen.

William West/AFP/Getty Images

Firefighters work to contain the flames at Faulconbridge in the Blue Mountains, southeastern Australia. Two major blazes have been deliberately merged in a desperate attempt to manage the advancing infernos as weather conditions worsen.

A couple look at a house burnt out by bushfires in Winmalee in Sydney's Blue Mountains. Residents faced scenes of devastation on Friday after bushfires ravaged communities and destroyed "hundreds" of homes in southeastern Australia with dozens of blazes still burning out of control.

Greg Wood/AFP

A couple look at a house burnt out by bushfires in Winmalee in Sydney‘s Blue Mountains. Residents faced scenes of devastation on Friday after bushfires ravaged communities and destroyed ‘hundreds’ of homes in southeastern Australia with dozens of blazes still burning out of control.

Ground Self-Defense Force rescue member search for survivors after a landslide caused by heavy rains brought on by typhoon Wipha buried houses at Oshima island, 120km south of Tokyo on October 17, 2013. At least 17 people died as a powerful typhoon lashed Japan's Pacific coast, with dozens still missing and the death toll likely to rise.

Kazuhiro Nogi/AFP

A Ground Self-Defense Force rescue member searches for survivors after a landslide caused by heavy rains brought on by typhoon Wipha buried houses at Oshima island, 120km south of Tokyo on Thursday. At least 17 people died as a powerful typhoon lashed Japan’s Pacific coast, with dozens still missing and the death toll likely to rise.

Filipinos walk along the road destroyed by a 7.2-magnitude earthquake  in Cortez  town, Bohol province, central Philippines, 16 October 2013. The death toll in a powerful earthquake in the Philippines has risen to 144, the national disaster risk management agency said 16 October.  At least 23 were reported missing and believed trapped in collapsed buildings in Bohol Province, 640 kilometres south of Manila, it added. Nearly 300 were injured in October 15  magnitude-7.2 tremor, the worst to hit the Philippines in two decades.

Dennis M. Sabangan/EPA

Filipinos walk along a road destroyed by a 7.2-magnitude earthquake in Cortez town, Bohol province, central Philippines. The death toll after the earthquake has risen to 144, the national disaster risk management agency said on Wednesday. At least 23 were reported missing and believed trapped in collapsed buildings in Bohol Province, 640km south of Manila, it added. Nearly 300 were injured in the tremor, the worst to hit the Philippines in two decades.

A woman reacts in front of collapsed houses following a landslide caused by Typhoon Wipha on Izu Oshima island, south of Tokyo. Eight people were killed and over 30 missing, with nearly 20,000 people ordered to evacuate and hundreds of flights cancelled as Typhoon Wipha pummelled the Tokyo region on Wednesday, leaving piles of wreckage on one small island but largely sparing the capital.  Mandatory Credit.

Kyodo/Reuters

A woman stands in front of collapsed houses after a landslide caused by Typhoon Wipha on Izu Oshima island, south of Tokyo. Eight people were killed and over 30 missing, with nearly 20,000 people ordered to evacuate and hundreds of flights cancelled as Typhoon Wipha pummelled the Tokyo region on Wednesday, leaving piles of wreckage on one small island but largely sparing the capital.

Thai children enjoy play in floodwaters at a buddhist temple in Pathum thani province, north of Bangkok on October 9, 2013. The Disaster Prevention and Mitigation Department reported that 27 provinces in Thailand are still flooded and 31 people have died due to the flood.

Pornchai Kittiwongsakul/AFP

Thai children play in floodwaters outside a buddhist temple in Pathum thani province, north of Bangkok, on Wednesday. The Disaster Prevention and Mitigation Department reported that 27 provinces in Thailand are still flooded and 31 people have died because of the flood.

TOPSHOTS A man crosses an empty street in Hong Kong on August 14, 2013. Hong Kong battened down as typhoon Utor forced the closure of the city's financial market and schools and disrupted hundreds of flights after leaving six dead in the Philippines.   AFP PHOTO / Philippe LopezPHILIPPE LOPEZ/AFP/Getty Images

Philippe Lopez/AFP/Getty Images

A man crosses an empty street in Hong Kong on Wednesday. Hong Kong battened down as typhoon Utor forced the closure of the city’s financial market and schools and disrupted hundreds of flights after leaving six dead in the Philippines.

 

an Indonesian man with his son pray after offering flowers on the dried volcanic mud for family members who died during a volcano eruption in Sidoarjo in eastern Java island, as Indonesians mark Eid al-Fitr with pilgrimages to cemeteries to remember their dead

M Andikam/AFP/Getty Images

 

A local resident gestures to a military helicopter dropping water over a burning forest in Varibobi, a northwestern suburb of Athens

Thanassis Stavrakis/AP

A local resident shows his support as a military helicopter drops water over a burning forest in Varibobi, a northwestern suburb of Athens, Greece on Tuesday.

Forest fire at Moimenta da Beira...epa03810708 Firemen are silhouetted against the flames as they fight a forest fire at Moimenta da Beira, Portugal, 02 August 2013. Media reports citing a spokesman for the National Fire Coordination Center state that more that 200,000 hectares of forest have been burnt by wildfires in this year following months of severe drought. According to the media reports there has been already several casualties by the wildfires.  EPA/NUNO ANDRE FERREIRA

Andre Ferreira/EPA

Firemen are silhouetted against the flames as they fight a forest fire at Moimenta da Beira, Portugal. Media reports citing a spokesman for the National Fire Coordination Centre state that more that 200,000 hectares of forest have been burnt by wildfires this year after months of severe drought. According to the media reports there has already been several casualties of the fires. 

A forensic scientist inspects euro banknotes which were damaged during the recent floods, at the money analyzing laboratory of Germany's Federal Reserve bank, Deutsche Bundesbank, in Mainz.

Kai Pfaffenbach/Reuters

A forensic scientist inspects euro banknotes which were damaged during the recent floods, at the money analyzing laboratory of Germany’s Federal Reserve bank, Deutsche Bundesbank, in Mainz.

TOPSHOTS Residents wade through water se...TOPSHOTS Residents wade through water searching for salvageable materials after a fire razed a slum area in Manila on July 24, 2013. Almost 200 houses were destroyed, leaving 400 residents homeless, according to a local media report.   AFP PHOTO/NOEL CELISNOEL CELIS/AFP/Getty Images

Noel Celis/AFP

Residents wade through water searching for anything that can be salvaged after a fire razed a slum area in Manila. Almost 200 houses were destroyed, leaving 400 residents homeless, according to a local media report. 

A boy cries as he receives treatment in ...A boy cries as he receives treatment in a temporary shelter set up for quake victims in the town of Minxian in Dingxi, northwest China's Gansu province on July 24, 2013. At least 94 people were killed, China's official news agency reported citing local authorities on July 23, with 1,000 more injured and 51,800 homes collapsing.     AFP PHOTO / WANG ZHAOWANG ZHAO/AFP/Getty Images

Wang Zhaowang/AFP

A boy cries as he receives treatment in a temporary shelter set up for earthquake victims in the town of Minxian in Dingxi, in northwest China’s Gansu province on Wednesday. At least 94 people were killed, China’s official news agency reported, in the July 22 quake. More than 1,000 were injured and 51,800 homes collapsed. 

A man holds a baby after a 6.6 magnitude earthquake in Minxian county...A man holds a baby after a 6.6 magnitude earthquake in Minxian county, Dingxi, Gansu province, July 22, 2013. The earthquake killed at least 89 people with hundreds injured for many homes in the affected areas collapsed, state media reported on Monday. REUTERS/Stringer (CHINA - Tags: DISASTER ENVIRONMENT) CHINA OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN CHINA

Reuters

A man holds a baby after a 6.6 magnitude earthquake in Minxian county, Dingxi, Gansu province in China on Monday

Rescuers search for survivors in the rui...Rescuers search for survivors in the ruins of a damaged house in Hetuo township in Dingxi, northwest China's Gansu province on July 22, 2013. Rescuers rushed to find victims buried by twin shallow earthquakes in northwest China Monday after the double tremors killed 73 people and injured almost 600, officials said.  CHINA OUT     AFP PHOTOSTR/AFP/Getty Images

AFP

Rescuers search for survivors in the ruins of a damaged house in the Hetuo township in Dingxi, in northwest China’s Gansu province on Monday. Rescuers found victims buried by twin shallow earthquakes after the double tremors killed 73 people and injured almost 600. 

U.S. forest firefighters get their rest in tents at the command post as the fire lights up the night skies from the Mountain Fire near Idyllwild...U.S. forest firefighters get their rest in tents at the command post as the fire lights up the night skies from the Mountain Fire near Idyllwild, California July 18, 2013. The blaze erupted on Monday afternoon about 100 miles (161 km) east of Los Angeles in the scenic but rugged San Jacinto Mountains that overlook Palm Springs, Rancho Mirage and several smaller desert towns.  REUTERS/Gene Blevins  (UNITED STATES - Tags: ENVIRONMENT)

Gene Blevins/Reuters

US forest firefighters take a rest in tents at the command post as a mountain fire lights up the night skies near Idyllwild, California on Thursday. 

A government employee inspects a light h...A government employee inspects a light house at Santiaochiao in New Taipei City as typhoon Soulik approaches northern Taiwan on July 11, 2013.  Taiwan evacuated more than 2,000 tourists as the island braced for super-typhoon Soulik while Japan's Okinawa warned residents giant waves of up to 12 metres (40 feet) could hit the archipelago.  AFP PHOTO / Sam YehSAM YEH/AFP/Getty Images

Sam Yeh/AFP

A government employee inspects a lighthouse at Santiaochiao in New Taipei City as typhoon Soulik approaches northern Taiwan on Thursday. 

People walk through a flooded street in Wuhan, in central China's Hubei province after a heavy storm hit paralysing transport

AFP/Getty Images

People walk through a flooded street in Wuhan, in central China’s Hubei province after a heavy storm hit paralysing transport