Looking at what is called a catastrophe in Christchurch--and being a trained catastrophe analyst, it is truly amazing to me how resilient humans truly are:
As usual, I am struck by the need for help post-disaster, and cannot help but wonder if anything preventative could have been done. The earthquake in Haiti was far "worse": as far as death toll and overall recovery efforts have proved. But if even our developed nations suffer catastrophic impacts, maybe we should truly start looking at how our "development" might create the pathways for destruction. In Chile, where a lot of energy and government funding is put into building infrastructure, recent similar events have not caused nearly the same catastrophic results:
Food for thought. NZ might be a great place for groundbreaking catastrophe research. No pun intended.