|MadSci Network: Earth Sciences|
Meagan: Due to the massive effect that Hurricane Mitch had on the people living in Honduras, there has not been much study given to the environmental damage. A lot of the problems that were caused by Mitch had to do with previous years of deforestation and the way that the land was used. The only answers that I can give at this time are the following: 1) Since ecotourism is one of the big industries that Honduras has, every effort is being made to survey the damage in those areas. There is also a movement to try and reforest those areas that were hardest hit. Links to further information can be found at: http://www.cnr.colostate.edu/orgs/saf/honduras.htm http://www.hondurasmitch.com/ http://www.whitehouse.gov/WH/EOP/VP_Wife/trips/careport.html 2) Information on the effects of Hurricane Inniki on the islands of Hawaii show a dramatic comeback in the ecosystem in just 6 years. Similar information from previous natural catastrophes show similar recovery (for example, look at the recovery in Yellowstone Park after the fires). The environment in Honduras will eventually recover - within the limits allowed by man's exploitation of that environment. It would probably be hard to see the effects of Mitch (barring future disasters to the same region) within 10-15 years. James Powell
Try the links in the MadSci Library for more information on Earth Sciences.