Self-organization, the cascade model, and natural hazards.


We consider the frequency-size statistics of two natural hazards, forest fires and landslides. Both appear to satisfy power-law (fractal) distributions to a good approximation under a wide variety of conditions. Two simple cellular-automata models have been proposed as analogs for this observed behavior, the forest fire model for forest fires and the sand pile model for landslides. The behavior of these models can be understood in terms of a self-similar inverse cascade. For the forest fire model the cascade consists of the coalescence of clusters of trees; for the sand pile model the cascade consists of the coalescence of metastable regions.

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@article{Turcotte2002SelforganizationTC, title={Self-organization, the cascade model, and natural hazards.}, author={Donald L. Turcotte and Bruce D. Malamud and Fausto Guzzetti and Paola Reichenbach}, journal={Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America}, year={2002}, volume={99 Suppl 1}, pages={2530-7} }