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Natural hazards arise as a result of natural biological and physical activities on . They become hazards because they put people and at risk of harm. Natural hazards associated with the environment are the result of geophysical processes on our planet (the way it has formed and how air circulates in the atmosphere) and its geomorphology (shape and structure). Many natural hazards are infrequent and . People live in places that are at risk because the immediate outweigh the possible danger. For example, the slopes of and the flood plains of rivers are particularly fertile, enabling people to grow crops. Many coastal areas are at risk of severe , but are great locations from which to trade and fish. For some people there is no choice - a lack of might mean they don’t understand the risk they are taking, or they have to live where they were born because they are not able to move to elsewhere. In 2005, the World Bank estimated that over of the world’s population live at risk from at least one natural hazard. Human behaviours are causing this to increase in two ways; firstly, undertaking activities that make natural events more frequent or intense, and secondly, more people are living in areas that are at risk.

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