The Netherlands is the most vulnerable country in Europe to a natural disaster, but still only ranks 69th in a new UN ranking because it is well positioned to cope with floods and rising sea levels.
The ranking was drawn up by the UN’s institute for the environment and human security and looks not only at the probability of a natural disaster occurring but at which countries the population can cope with these events.
The Pacific Island state of Vanuatu has the highest ranking, at 32%. This indicates that disaster risk is highest; whereas Malta and Qatar, with 0.72% and 0.02%, respectively, show the lowest risk worldwide.
‘The Netherlands and Hungary are relatively high exposed to natural hazards and climate change, but due to their social, economic and ecological situations, they have a comparatively good ranking,’ the institute said in a statement.
The institute looked at the likely effect of earthquakes, storms, floods, droughts and a sea level rise. The Netherlands is in 12th place purely in terms of its susceptibility to a natural disaster.