Encyclopedia of Natural Hazards

2013 Edition
| Editors: Peter T. Bobrowsky

Land Use, Urbanization, and Natural Hazards

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4020-4399-4_210


Land use: This concerns the ways in which land is utilized and developed (e.g., residential, industrial, commercial, agriculture, forestry, etc.) or conserved (e.g., to protect natural and seminatural habitats or endangered species).

Urbanization: This is the process of growth of population centers to become towns, cities, megacities, and metropolitan areas.

Urban areas: These are variously defined making it difficult to generalize and to compare statistics. These are often expressed in terms of the density of population per unit area. A fairly widely used figure is 400 persons per km2 but geography plays a strong part in national definitions. For instance, in the USA, a figure of 386 per km2 in a census block (but with additional conditions relating to surrounding blocks) is used, compared with a density of 200 per km2 in Australia, or 4,000 per km2in Japan. An alternative approach is to consider a minimum area containing a certain number of residents (e.g., 1,500 census...

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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.LondonUK