Volume 21 Issue 4, 2006

Volcanic island in crisis: investigating environmental uncertainty and the complexities it brings

Katharine Haynes

Peer-reviewed Article

Archived Article


Just as a volcanic eruption brings molten material to the surface, enabling volcanologists to glimpse the workings of the internal earth, an environmental crisis can expose underlying problems and weaknesses in emergency planning and governance; Montserrat is such an example. This paper explores the complex socio-political relations which developed on this volcanically uncertain island and which continue to create difficult emergency management challenges. Identifying the social and political barriers to effective implementation of emergency response efforts could be of help in developing Australia’s response plans and the evaluation of humanitarian and emergency aid efforts on nearby islands.