UN symposium seeks to enhance early warning and mitigation for natural disasters

Some 90 experts in early warning systems and natural disaster risk management met at a United Nations symposium in Geneva today to strengthen global mechanisms, especially for less developed countries, that have already helped to reduce the number of fatalities by nearly two-thirds at a time when such catastrophes have increased four-fold.

UN launches landmark disaster relief fund to speed up emergency assistance

The United Nations today formally launched a landmark $500-million fund – with over half that amount already pledged – to jump-start relief operations in future natural and man-made disasters and save thousands of lives that would otherwise be lost to delay under the current under-funded mechanism.

Landmark UN disaster relief fund to be formally launched next week

In one week’s time, the United Nations will formally launch a landmark $500-million fund to jump-start relief operations in future natural and man-made disasters and save thousands of lives that would otherwise be lost to delay under the current under-funded mechanism.

UN tsunami envoy Bill Clinton urges immediate steps to prevent disaster

Thousands of lives and billions of dollars lost in the devastating Indian Ocean tsunami in 2004 could have been saved if disaster reduction strategies had been in place, United Nations tsunami envoy former United States President Bill Clinton said today, highlighting the urgent need to implement these measures.

Governments must do more to reduce the impact of natural disasters – UN body

Marking the one year anniversary of an international agreement aimed at reducing the impact of natural disasters, a senior United Nations official today called on countries to speed up their efforts to make risk reduction a national priority.

Disasters of 2005 not completely 'natural,' UN health agency says

The high death toll in 2005 from tsunamis, hurricanes, typhoons, mudslides, earthquakes, volcanoes, locusts and pandemics can not necessarily be blamed on “natural” disaster, according to the United Nations health agency which today pointed to a complex mix of human and natural factors that led to tragedy in those events.

With UN support, Africa is set to agree on disaster risk reduction programme

Noting that Africa is the only continent whose share of reported disasters in the world total has increased over the past decade, government ministers from 40 countries are set to agree on ways to implement a new continental disaster reduction strategy that will also help to eradicate poverty.

UN meeting seeks to save tens of thousands of lives from future natural disasters

Terming recent natural disasters in which hundreds of thousands of people died and hundreds of millions of livelihoods were lost "a wakeup call like no other," the top United Nations relief coordinator today called for more effective prevention and preparedness systems, especially for developing countries.

Annan calls for investment in disaster prevention in year of 'profound lessons'

In a year when people worldwide have been reminded that nowhere is immune from natural disaster, United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan today called on Governments, international organizations, civil society and the private sector to invest in disaster prevention and poverty reduction so as to build resilient communities and save lives.

UN University calls for recognition of those displaced by gradual environmental change

Marking the United Nations Day for Disaster Reduction, the UN University (UNU) today called on the international community to recognize the plight of people who are displaced not by dramatic disasters but by gradual negative changes in the environment.