Updated October 5, 2022
International or World Tsunami Awareness Day is a worldwide event that takes place on November 5 every year. The purpose of this day is to raise tsunami awareness among the millions of people who live in low-lying coastal areas and on small islands.
The day seeks to promote innovative risk-reduction strategies. Also, the activists joins hands to push the govts for proper policies making so as to lessen the impact of the tsunami and increase resilience and protect vulnerable people.
What is Tsunami?
The term ‘Tsunami’ is a Japanese term that means “harbor wave”. A tsunami is a series of giant waves majorly caused by four ways including underwater earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, landslides, or extraterrestrial impacts such as asteroids.
Tsunami waves can reach heights of 20 feet to 300 feet and move at speeds of up to 800 km/h. The depth of the ocean affects the tsunami wave’s speed. When a tsunami reaches shallow waters, its pace slows down from being fast in deep water. It’s important to note that the Pacific Ocean is where 80% of tsunamis take place.
History of World Tsunami Awareness Day
The First World Tsunami Awareness Day was celebrated on November 5, 2016. To commemorate the occasion, an event was organized with Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) Champions at the Asian Ministerial Conference for Disaster Risk Reduction (AMCDRR) 2016.
The Conference was hosted by the Government of India and the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) from November 3–5, 2016, at Vigyan Bhawan in New Delhi.
After the 2004 deadliest Tsunami in the Indian Ocean; The United Nations General Assembly officially declared 5 November as World Tsunami Awareness Day beginning in December 2015. The primary objective of this day is to generate awareness about Tsunami among over 700 million people who live in low-lying coastal areas and Small Islands.
Significance of World Tsunami Awareness Day
Tsunamis are rare occurrences but can be very dangerous. In the last century, 58 of them have claimed more than 260,000 lives, or an average of 4,600 per disaster, surpassing any other natural hazard.
The Indian Ocean tsunami in December 2004 caused the most fatalities during that time. In 14 countries, it is estimated to have killed 227,000 people, with Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India, and Thailand suffering the greatest losses.
Hence, in December 2015, the United Nations (UN) decided to create 5 November as the World Tsunami Awareness Day to encourage international bodies, civil society, and nations to raise awareness about natural disasters. The United Nations also encouraged countries and other relevant organizations to discuss innovative approaches to risk reduction in the future.
For the uninitiated, Japan is the country that created this day. Over the years, Japan has developed advanced expertise in Tsunami early warning along with public action due to the country’s tragic and repeated experience with the natural disaster.
Tsunami Awareness Day Theme 2022;
Every year, World Tsunami Awareness Day is celebrated with a specific theme to make this day more special. The theme of World Tsunami Awareness Day 2021 was “Enhancing international cooperation for developing countries to raise tsunami awareness.” And the theme for 2022 is not decided yet.
In 2021, World Tsunami Awareness Day promoted the “Sendai Seven Campaign,” target (f), which focuses on ‘substantially enhancing international cooperation to developing countries through adequate and sustainable support to complement their national actions for implementation of the present Framework by 2030.’
Quotes, Messages, & Slogans
(I) “You’ll never be just anything. A tsunami can never be just a wave (…) Waves are banal. Tsunamis reshape the Earth.” ― Karen Marie Moning
(II) “Then he heard a distant rumble – louder than thunder. Looking out to sea, Sawat saw a grey wall of water, the width of the horizon, tumbling at high speed towards the shoreline.” ― Kevin Ansbro
(III) “Whenever an earthquake or tsunami takes thousands of innocents lives, a shocked world talks of little else.” ― Anne M. Mulcahy
(IV) “This is an unprecedented global catastrophe and it requires an unprecedented global response.” ― Kofi Annan
(V) “At first it seemed a terrible disaster, a terrible tragedy. But I think as the days have gone on, people have recognized it as a global catastrophe.” ― Tony Blair
(VI) “A tsunami is the largest wave in the harbor. Keep yourself secure from its effects”.
(VII) “The indications are the disaster is going to be a lot worse than we have anticipated already. Aceh really is ground zero.” ― John Budd
(VIII) “Humans must behave responsibly if seas are to behave well.”
(IX) “These water walls are more durable than the hardest concrete. Educate them about World Tsunami Day.
(X) “The tsunami is a monster that nobody should fear! Let others live longer and keep yourself secure from it.
(XI) “World tsunami day is observed to recognize the enormous impact these waves have on people and the potential for damage
(XII) “The people of the land are hit harder by the waves the harder the waves hit the land,”