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Equal priority is needed to strengthen policies on disaster response and prevention says European Commissioner

Recognizing the political importance and impact of recent disasters, UNISDR and the European Parliament organized a debate "Prevent or react: The EU approach to Disaster Risk Reduction" to discuss the European Union's approach to disaster prevention.
14 Jun 2011 News briefs

Water, too little or too much – a resource that can improve or destroy life: smarter water management needed to reduce disaster risks

On the opening day of the World Water Week taking place in Stockholm, Sweden this week, speakers called for increased investments in disaster-resilient infrastructure and smarter water management to avoid drought, floods and other water-related disasters, particularly in urban areas.
24 Aug 2011 News briefs

Bridging the gap between climate scientists and disaster risk reduction experts, during Fifteenth Southern Africa Region Climate Outlook Forum

The Southern Africa Development Community Disaster Risk Reduction Unit, GFDRR and UNISDR are conducting a disaster risk reduction stakeholders training workshop from 27-28 August 2011.
27 Aug 2011 News briefs

Data-collection gap preventing governments from determining risk levels says MDG Gap Task Force Report

The UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon, today drew attention to the “data-collection gap” which is preventing governments from effectively determining risk levels with his launch of the Fourth report of the MDG Gap Task Force in New York.
16 Sep 2011 News briefs

Earthquake prediction comes under scrutiny as scientists’ trial opens in Italy

Seismic risk has taken on a different meaning this week with the trial opening in Italy of six scientists charged with failing to predict the L’Aquila earthquake that killed 309 people in 2009 and left 70,000 people homeless. The scientists and one official are charged with manslaughter.
21 Sep 2011 News briefs

UN Secretary-General Calls for Development Framework to Incorporate Disaster, Climate Risk Management

As the international community gears up for the Rio+20 Conference on Sustainable Development to be held in June next year, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon is calling for any future framework for sustainable development to include a “clear prescription for incorporation of disaster and climate risk management.”
29 Sep 2011 News briefs

World Habitat Day 2011: Over 800 cities join resilience campaign to fight climate change

The UN Disaster Risk Reduction Office, UNISDR, today announced that 841 cities and municipalities around the world, representing hundreds of millions of urban dwellers, are now active participants in the World Disaster Reduction Campaign “Making Cities Resilient” which was launched over a year ago.
3 Oct 2011 Press release

How to better communicate disaster risk reduction

Some of the biggest media houses in the world from the Times of India to the Philippines Daily Inquirer to Caracol Television in Colombia have now participated in media training on disaster risk reduction organized by UNISDR, the United Nations office for disaster reduction, with the support of ECHO, the European Commission’s Humanitarian Aid branch.
18 Oct 2011 News briefs

Insurance necessary for resilience in earthquake zones

Turkey’s 23 October quake revealed that only 9 per cent of building owners were insured despite it being mandatory in the country’s municipal areas.
2 Nov 2011 News briefs

UNISDR and partners plan for major advance in global disaster risk modelling

The Special Representative of the UN Secretary General for Disaster Risk Reduction, Margareta Wahlström, today announced that the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, UNISDR, is to work with its partners over the next four years on developing a global disaster risk model which will provide the best information available on likely economic losses as climate change kicks in.
14 Nov 2011 Press release

UNISDR supports Philippines to build national disaster loss database

It's one of the most disaster-prone countries in the world. Over the last twenty years a yearly average of some four million people have been affected by disasters in the Philippines each year and over 33,000 people have lost their lives in 363 major reported events.
28 Nov 2011 News briefs

Strengthening impact of cities campaign

The UN office for disaster risk reduction, UNISDR, and ICLEI-Local Governments for Sustainability have completed a four-month pilot test of the Local Government Self-Assessment Tool (LG-SAT) designed to help disaster risk reduction efforts in over 1,000 cities and local governments that have signed up to UNISDR's global "Making Cities Resilient" Campaign. LG-SAT has been made possible with funding from the World Bank's Global Facility for Disaster Risk Reduction and the European Commission's Humanitarian Aid branch, ECHO.
14 Dec 2011 News briefs

Local and hi-tech responses needed when disaster strikes in Africa

Acting Director for UNISDR, Helena Molin Valdes, spoke to SciDevNet about the need for improving access to information in dealing with disasters, during the four-day Eye on Earth Summit in Abu Dhabi from 12-15 December.
15 Dec 2011 News briefs

Crisis Mapping and Disaster Risk Reduction

Crisis mapping has emerged in the last five years as a dynamic and open way to visualize and report on crisis and disasters. With increasing internet connectivity, mobile phone use, and user-generated content, 'crowdsourcing' is gaining traction by taking advantage of information communication technology (ICT) that allows communities and networks to answer some of the world’s most pressing issues.
16 Dec 2011 News briefs

Are we capable of learning the lessons of Haiti?

An insightful new report on the 2010 Haiti earthquake offers a scathing critique of an international community which "has much to learn from the response in Haiti where it has shown an ability to repeat its errors and shortcomings from past disasters."
1 Feb 2012 News briefs

UNISDR Chief welcomes WMO boost for early warning systems

The UN Special Representative for Disaster Risk Reduction, Margareta Wahlström, today welcomed the announcement that the World Meteorological Organization’s (WMO) new Weather and Climate Information System has become operational “as a major contribution towards life-saving efforts at community level.”
2 Feb 2012 Press release

IPCC report on climate change and risk coming soon

A new groundbreaking report due out next month underlines how the well-being of vulnerable, impoverished populations living in parts of the world most exposed to disasters fuelled by climate change, will be severely undermined in the coming century.
10 Feb 2012 News briefs

UNISDR issues flood warning as thaw sets in across Eastern and Central Europe

The UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, UNISDR, today said the European Flood Alert System could soon be put to its greatest test since widespread flooding ten years ago led to its creation by the European Commission.
21 Feb 2012 Press release

UN kicks off discussions on new international blueprint for disaster risk reduction

The UN Special Representative for Disaster Risk Reduction, Margareta Wahlström, and HE Yoichi Otabe, the Japanese Ambassador to the International Organizations in Geneva, announced today the start of consultations on a new international blueprint for reducing disaster losses in advance of the World Conference on Disaster Reduction which the Japanese government is proposing to host in 2015.
5 Mar 2012 Press release

Japan's success in risk reduction highlighted on March 11 anniversary

The UN Secretary-General's Special Representative for Disaster Risk Reduction, Margareta Wahlström, today paid tribute to the resilience of the Japanese people as they prepare to mark the first anniversary of the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami.
9 Mar 2012 Press release

Asian mayors meet in Manila to talk resilience

Mayors and other representatives from some of Asia's largest cities are gathering for three days in Manila to focus on urban resilience across the disaster-prone region.
21 Mar 2012 News briefs

Private sector's key emergency role in Japan

Kokusai Kogyo is one of several Japanese companies bound to the government by a bond called saigai kyotei, a service agreement activated by the occurrence of an emergency.
27 Mar 2012 News briefs

IPCC report outlines threat to 'The Future We Want'

UNISDR today welcomed the full publication of the Special Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) on Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation (SREX) and said "it provides us with the impetus for action to save the world from the worst that climate change can bring to our planet in the coming years."
30 Mar 2012 News briefs

UN launches new initiative to assess urban risk

The UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) today launched a new initiative to support cities around the world to manage risk following the worst year on record for economic losses from disasters. It also announced today that over 1,000 cities have now joined its "Making Cities Resilient" Campaign.
18 Apr 2012 Press release

Using GIS for disaster risk reduction

Innovations in technology have made it easier in the last decade to reduce disaster risks and plan for the future. The internet combined with technologies, such as Geographic Information Systems (GIS), now makes it possible to better understand and communicate the social and physical complexities of disasters.
24 Apr 2012 News briefs

Arab States set to increase disaster loss databases

A regional meeting of experts held in Cairo could result in a doubling of the number of Arab countries that systematically report on disaster losses. UNISDR brought together over 40 participants from 15 Arab countries to discuss and exchange experiences on establishing national disaster loss databases.
23 May 2012 News briefs

Webinars on Resilient Cities starts 29 May

The International Council for Research and Innovation in Building and the UN office for disaster risk reduction are hosting a series of four webinars on building disaster resilient cities. The topics are: enabling risk reduction through urban planning; how to encourage multi-stakeholder engagement as a key factor in in the planning, design, construction and operation or maintenance of resilient cities; people’s needs and expectations in post-disaster reconstruction (in Spanish); and how local governments have used UNISDR's Ten Essentials for Making Cities Resilient and the Local Government Self-Assessment Tool to close gaps and define priorities and institutional commitments to reduce disaster risk at local level.
29 May 2012 News briefs

Inclusive dialogue key to Rio+20 outcome

Whether the discussion is on jobs, food, energy, water, oceans or sustainable cities, inclusive dialogue is key, say UN agencies on the sidelines of Rio+20, the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, as negotiators enter the last round of talks on an outcome document ahead of the conference's official start next week.
14 Jun 2012 News briefs

Parliamentarians focus on risk reduction at Rio

Around 200 legislators from 74 countries and the European Union met yesterday on the sidelines of the UN Rio+20 sustainable development conference to approve a "Legislators' Protocol," containing a set of "Rio Scrutiny Principles" to strengthen legislators' capacity to hold governments to account on promises made at development conferences including Rio+20.
18 Jun 2012 News briefs

Building the future we want

In the lead-up to Rio+20, I have visited countless communities and spoken to hundreds of people. From mayors in Mexico, to families living in temporary shelters in the Philippines following Typhoon Sendong, the message has been the same -- people want a better tomorrow, for themselves and for their children.
18 Jun 2012 Statements & speeches
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