This report explains that disaster events are only the tip of the iceberg, by highlighting how these events are interconnected with each other, with other larger processes, as well as with our action or inaction. They can lead to future disasters or will worsen existing problems such as biodiversity loss or poverty. The world is becoming ever-more interconnected, so do the risks. To manage these risks, the why and how they are interconnected should be understood. Only then appropriate solutions can be found. The COVID-19 pandemic, which was facilitated or amplified by our hyper-connected society, demonstrated in the clearest form possible that there are no borders or boundaries that can contain disasters. While this interconnectivity has been globally recognized for COVID-19, it equally applies to many other large-scale disasters which took place in 2020/2021.
The report analyses 10 interconnected disasters that took place in 2020/2021. They were selected for their notoriety and representation of larger global issues, which have changed or will change our lives across the world:
- Amazon Wildfires – Wildfires fueled by global appetite
- Arctic Heatwave – Spiraling into a climate disaster
- Beirut Explosion – When the global community abandons ship
- Central Viet Nam Floods – When being prepared is no longer enough
- Chinese Paddlefish Extinction – The fish that survived the dinosaur extinction but not humankind
- COVID-19 Pandemic – How a pandemic is showing us the value of biodiversity
- Cyclone Amphan – When a cyclone and a pandemic combine
- Desert Locust outbreak – How manageable risks spin out of control
- Great Barrier Reef bleaching – Losing more than a natural wonder
- Texas cold wave – A preventable catastrophe?