Resettlement Causes and Effects EVS Grade 5 | Orchids International
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Human Settlement

Concept: Resettlement—Causes and Effects

What is resettlement?

  • Resettlement is the movement of a large group of people from one region to a distant area.
  • It happens due to forced migration, mostly due to natural or man-made disasters and bad economic conditions.
  • Due to resettlement, people often lose valuable economic assets like houses or lands, jobs, cultural identity, etc.
  • After the resettlement, proper rehabilitation for the newly resettled community is mandatory to safeguard them in the new environment.

Causes of resettlement:

The causes of resettlement can be of the following types—

1. Natural Disasters: These are one of the significant causes behind resettlement.

a) Earthquakes:

  • An earthquake is a natural disaster caused by the sudden shaking of the earth’s surface.
  • The earth’s crust is made of several plates known as tectonic plates.
  • These tectonic plates constantly move on the earth’s mantle.
  • While floating, when one tectonic plate slide over another one, an earthquake occurs.
  • From the zone of the slide over, shock waves spread in all directions, which causes sudden shaking of the earth’s surface.
  • Earthquakes can destroy an entire habitat, including trees, concrete roads, buildings, bridges, etc.
  • They can induce a sudden outbreak of fire.
  • Many people die and get injured due to the severity of an earthquake.
  • As earthquakes cause extensive destruction of properties, people may need other places for resettlement.

b) Floods:

  • Floods happen when a dry land area suddenly becomes waterlogged due to the overflow of water.
  • It may happen for various reasons, like continuous heavy rainfall over a long time.
  • The water overflows from adjacent lakes, rivers, or reservoirs.
  • Floods may cause deadly water-borne diseases like jaundice, cholera, typhoid, dengue, malaria, etc.
  • They destroy vegetation, livestock, properties, and valuable belongings.

c) Tsunami:

  • A tsunami is a massive ocean wave caused by an underwater earthquake or volcanic eruption.
  • A tsunami can produce a series of enormous waves that can cause severe damage to man-made structures.
  • When earthquakes happen underwater, the ocean floor suddenly lifts or slides down, causing a sudden displacement of the ocean water that creates massive waves.
  • After the tsunami, many water-borne diseases spread, causing severe health hazards.
  • The huge waves formed by a tsunami are fatal as they can destroy houses and buildings and kill or injure people.

d) Cyclones, hurricanes, and typhoons:

  • Cyclones, hurricanes, or typhoons are tropical storms mainly affecting coastal areas.
  • During these storms, strong winds continuously spin around a centre.
  • These storms always form above the warm ocean and hit land with heavy rains and strong winds.
  • During cyclones, winds blow around 120 kilometres per hour.
  • Such strong winds can uproot trees and can cause severe damage to life and property.
  • After the storm subsides, places remain waterlogged for a long time, resources get destroyed, and drinking water gets contaminated, which makes normal life difficult in the affected areas.

e) Wildfires:

  • A wildfire is a massive, destructive, and uncontrolled fire that takes place in a forested area.
  • Forest fires can happen for many reasons, and the causes could be natural or man-made.
  • A lightning strike in a dry forest can cause fire that may destroy the whole forest.
  • Sometimes these forest fires happen from campfires or lit cigarettes.
  • Forest fires mainly destroy trees and shrubs, which are good resources for the local people dependent on forest products.

f) Droughts:

  • A drought happens when a particular area does not get sufficient rainfall for a long period.
  • It is an effect of a continuous period of dry weather.
  • Crops and other plants do not grow in drought-affected areas due to the absence of water.
  • Droughts can transform fertile land into a desert.
  • Droughts can cause famine, and people may start to resettle in other fertile places to improve their lives.

g) Volcanic eruption:

  • During a volcanic eruption, magma erupts from the opening of the volcano.
  • The magma released from a volcano when it comes out is called lava. It has a high temperature and is fatal for all living organisms.
  • A volcanic eruption can cause wildfires and destroy human habitats.
  • It also destroys agricultural lands and deteriorates the water quality of the affected area.
  • These are the reasons why people may need to resettle in other places after volcanic eruptions.

h) Landslides:

  • Landslides happen when rocks, sand, and mud roll down the mountain slopes.
  • They cause massive destruction because while moving down the slope, the rocks, mud, pebbles, and sand sweep away everything that falls on their paths, like houses, trees, shops, streetlights, etc.
  • Roads and rivers are also blocked due to landslides.
  • Landslides cause fatal accidents to humans and animals and destroy natural vegetation.
  • Mostly deforestation and excessive rainfall are the reasons for landslides.

2. Man-made disasters: man-made incidents that force people to resettle in other areas are described below.

a) Industrial accidents:

  • Industrial accidents may lead to the sudden discharge of toxic materials that may contaminate land and water.
  • When people breathe this polluted air or drink contaminated water, they fall sick.
  • Industrial accidents are fatal for all living beings.
  • These accidents do not permanently destroy the habitat but make it unfit for living.

b) Collapse of dams:

  • A dam collapses or bursts due to the sudden, uncontrolled release of excess water.
  • Dam bursts can kill people and destroy homes.
  • A dam failure causes flooding, and floods cause habitat destruction of both humans and animals, along with the occurrence of many water-borne diseases.

c) Urbanisation:

  • Urbanisation is a continuous process in which a group of people moves from rural to urban areas, gradually congesting them.
  • People move to the cities for many causes—more industries, better job opportunities, good communication, advanced medical facilities, and proper educational institutes.
  • Apart from all these, people get a lot of social benefits in the cities rather than in villages.

Effects of resettlement:

a) Conflict over resources:

  • When a large group of people resettles at a specific place, they leave everything behind to start a fresh life in the newly shifted place.
  • It is obvious that all of them have to struggle for resources.
  • The resource is mainly limited in the environment, so proper resource partitioning is necessary in society for everyone’s well-being.
  • Resources include food, water, sunlight, soil, natural gas, electricity, etc.

b) Lack of jobs:

  • When a large group of people resettles in another place, at least one person from every family should have a stable income to sustain life.
  • In a new place, getting a job is challenging.
  • So, resettled people often find it tougher to get a good job and live a well-off life.

c) Social and cultural issues:

  • Sometimes the children of resettled people suffer from an identity crisis in the new environment.
  • Suppose the family is resettled in a place where others are culturally different from them. In that case, the family struggles to understand and become familiar with the new cultural and social norms.
  • A good idea and realising the new culture are equally crucial for social mixing.

d) Changes in the traditions of tribal people:

  • Tribal people are culturally different from us as they have different customs, laws, and regulations.
  • When tribal people resettle in other places, they lose the rich tradition of their indigenous culture and have to do jobs they are not experts at.
  • Tribal people are mostly hunters, woodcutters, or work on agricultural lands.

e) Deforestation and extinction of wildlife:

  • When a group of people resettles in a distant region, new houses are built for their accommodation.
  • For this reason, forested areas are cleared, leading to deforestation.
  • As a result, the number of animals residing in that area decreases rapidly.
  • Many plants and animals have been tagged as rare or endangered due to this reason.

New Words:

Migration: The movement of either people or animals from one area to another.

Livestock: Farm animals including sheep, pigs, goats, and cattle.

Magma: A hot liquid and semi-liquid rock located under the earth's surface that comes out during a volcanic eruption.

Habitat: A place where a living organism makes its home.

Famine: A situation where there is acute scarcity of food.

Indigenous: Native; existing naturally or having always lived in a place.

Did You Know?

  • When a war breaks out in a country, people often start to resettle in other countries and are tagged as refugees.
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  • The common civet has become a rare animal because of habitat destruction due to urbanisation and resettlement.
  • Nature-1
  • Many governmental and non-governmental organisations set up rehabilitation programmes for resettled people at various places to support them.
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