Natural Disasters in the Asia-Pacific: U.S. Interests, Challenges, and Opportunities

  • Lieutenant Colonel Frank A. Makoski

The Asia-Pacific has the most natural disasters than any other region in the world. It is also an area of increasing economic growth and urbanization. The devastating costs associated with natural disasters have direct and indirect implications, not only for the region, but also for the United States. As the U.S. shifts its focus to Asia, it is essential to understand and mitigate the effects natural disasters have in the Asia-Pacific in order to promote stability and protect U.S. interests. This paper will examine the causes of natural disasters in the Asia-Pacific, assess the costs associated with these events, and link how environmental catastrophes in the region affect the United States and its interests in the region. In addition, it will provide recommendations on how the U.S. government can better support endeavours to build resilience against the effects of natural disasters with the goal of maintaining stability and security in the Asia-Pacific, and ultimately in the United States.