Disaster Risk Reduction

Water-related hazards dominate list of 10 most destructive disasters

Against the backdrop of a rapidly changing global climate, water-related hazards top the list of natural disasters with the highest human losses in the past 50 years, according to a new report by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).

UN Catch-Up Dateline Geneva – Drought in Bolivia, COVID in Africa, & why climate resilience matters to shopkeepers

In this week’s show: a chilling warning that climate change could cause a pandemic-scale economic shock to small businesses once a decade; we follow the fast-growing COVID-19 spike across Africa and hear welcome news about how some countries have included refugees in their pandemic vaccination programmes. We’ll also be learning about why drought “could be the next pandemic” from the UN’s top disaster risk reduction official, in this week’s interview.

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Disaster preparedness is key, 10 years on from Japan quake and tsunami: UN

The UN chief urged countries to make sure they invest the funds necessary to prevent and manage disasters, in a solemn message of remembrance on Wednesday for the 18,400 people who died or are unaccounted for, due to the earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan exactly ten years ago.

Shift needed from what weather will be, to ‘what the weather will do’

Extreme weather and climate events have increased in frequency, intensity and severity as a result of climate change, hitting vulnerable communities disproportionately hard, a new UN report has revealed, calling for greater investment in effective early warning systems. 

Bad situations ‘only get worse’ without disaster risk governance, UN chief says on International Day

With nations facing multiple crises simultaneously and a dramatic rise in extreme weather events in recent decades, the UN Secretary-General has called for strengthening disaster risk governance, to build a safer, more resilient world. 

News in Brief 12 October 2020

  • Staggering rise in climate emergencies in last 20 years, disaster research shows 
  • Food summit will address hunger and climate emergency 
  • Despair widespread among refugees because of COVID pandemic: UNHCR 
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‘Staggering’ rise in climate emergencies in last 20 years, new disaster research shows

The first 20 years of this century have seen a “staggering” rise in climate disasters, UN researchers said on Monday, while also maintaining that “almost all nations” have failed to prevent a “wave of death and illness” caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Climate change: Record northern heat, fuels concerns over US wildfire destruction

The northern hemisphere experienced its warmest August ever, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) said on Tuesday, amid searing conditions that have contributed to devastating wildfires on the west coast of the United States.

How can the UN help prevent another Beirut disaster?

The devastation caused by the Beirut explosions on 4 August has focused attention on the risks involved in the transportation and storage of dangerous goods around the world. The UN is at the forefront of international efforts to reduce these risks and save lives. 

India and Bangladesh: Health and environmental risks grow, following deadly cyclone

UN humanitarians and partners are working hard to assist the people of Bangladesh and India suffering from the impact of Cyclone Amphan, which left dozens dead, causing widespread destruction.

According to the UN Country Team in India, Cyclone Amphan, with more than 2.4 million people and 500,000 livestock evacuated to cyclone shelters., is now considered even more destructive than Cyclone Aila, which slammed the region in 2009.

Due to flooding and the extensive damage caused, the risk of disease outbreaks is high, and further environmental risks remain, due to the large amounts of debris and waste.

Ranjini Mukherjee, Disaster Risk Reduction Specialist, from UN India, described the situation to UN News’s Anshu Sharma, and told her that efforts continue to be implemented in shelter homes to minimize risk of infection and prevent COVID-19 from spreading.

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