Journal Article Measures for groundwater security during and after the Hanshin-Awaji earthquake (1995) and the Great East Japan earthquake (2011), Japan

TANAKA, Tadashi

24 ( 2 )  , pp.277 - 286 , 2016-03 , Springer Verlag
Many big earthquakes have occurred in the tectonic regions of the world, especially in Japan. Earthquakes often cause damage to crucial life services such as water, gas and electricity supply systems and even the sewage system in urban and rural areas. The most severe problem for people affected by earthquakes is access to water for their drinking/cooking and toilet flushing. Securing safe water for daily life in an earthquake emergency requires the establishment of countermeasures, especially in a mega city like Tokyo. This paper described some examples of groundwater use in earthquake emergencies, with reference to reports, books and newspapers published in Japan. The consensus is that groundwater, as a source of water, plays a major role in earthquake emergencies, especially where the accessibility of wells coincides with the emergency need. It is also important to introduce a registration system for citizen-owned and company wells that can form the basis of a cooperative during a disaster; such a registration system was implemented by many Japanese local governments after the Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake in 1995 and the Great East Japan Earthquake in 2011, and is one of the most effective countermeasures for groundwater use in an earthquake emergency. Emphasis is also placed the importance of establishing of a continuous monitoring system of groundwater conditions for both quantity and quality during non-emergency periods.

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