News Archive

Stay up-to-date with our work and activities with

266 Items
TitleDateType

Qatar strengthens desert resilience

Qatar is taking major steps to develop a national plan for mainstreaming disaster risk reduction and recovery to address future disaster challenges, improve the coordination and determine key actions.
19 May 2014 News briefs

Climate threat to Africa’s resilience

A disaster-resilient future for Africa will have to take account of the fact that it is the region of the world that will suffer the most from climate change and which struggles the most when it comes to capacity to manage present and future disaster risk, the 5th Africa Regional Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction heard yesterday.
16 May 2014 News briefs

Africa unites on reducing disaster risk

Africa today became the first world region to make a comprehensive set of recommendations for a new UN global agreement on reducing disaster risk, recognizing that most disasters in Africa are water-related and that efforts are needed to prevent conflict as part of overall efforts to build resilience to disasters.
16 May 2014 Press release

Is Ethiopia the future of DRR?

From school to university education, from early warning to data collection, and from national development plans to community-based participation, Ethiopia has made solid gains in implementing the Hyogo Framework for Action, the global agreement on disaster risk reduction adopted in 2005.
15 May 2014 News briefs

Africa meets on post-HFA agenda

The African Union (AU) will integrate disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation in its new Africa Climate Change Strategy, AU Commissioner Rhoda Peace told the opening session of the 5th Africa Regional Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) yesterday attended by a record 800 participants including representatives from 48 AU countries.
14 May 2014 News briefs

5th Africa Regional Platform for DRR opens in Abuja

A record attendance is expected for this week’s 5th Africa Regional Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction which opens today in the Nigerian capital, Abuja. Some 700 politicians, disaster managers and civil society representatives from across Africa are registered to attend on May 13-17 and will review the continent’s progress in disaster risk management.
13 May 2014 Press release

China backs cooperation on DRR

China has signaled its support for stronger international cooperation to prevent and reduce the impact of disasters as momentum builds to develop the Post-2015 Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction.
13 May 2014 News briefs

India’s brave new urban world

Ajit Gulabchand, the Chairman and Managing Director of the Hindustan Construction Co., is firm in his intention to develop India’s first new hill city since the days of the British Raj.
12 May 2014 News briefs

Pristina joins Making Cities Resilient Campaign

The flood-prone capital, Pristina, joined the Making Cities Resilient Campaign today, making it the first city in Kosovo to do so. Floods are a recurring problem in Pristina. The UNISDR Campaign will help bring about a higher level of awareness that there is a compelling need for investment in disaster prevention, rather than focusing on response and allocating resources to cover the damages and economic losses after a disaster strikes.

7 May 2014 News briefs

OECD work on resilience important for DRR World Conference

The Head of UNISDR, Margareta Wahlstrom, has said that the OECD can have a “critical impact” on the preparatory work leading up the adoption of a new global framework for disaster risk reduction at the Third UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction in March 2015.
7 May 2014 News briefs

Tunisian cities boost campaign

The Making Cities Resilient Campaign has received a major boost from North Africa with seven Tunisian cities signing up with commitments to make their municipalities safer.
1 May 2014 News briefs

Venice Mayor seeks ban on cruise ships

A powerful State committee for safeguarding Venice will meet today in Rome for the first time in three years to consider a proposal from the Mayor of Venice and UNISDR Champion, Giorgio Orsoni, to ban large cruise ships from sailing past the city’s most famous landmarks including the Piazza San Marco and the Doge’s Palace.
30 Apr 2014 News briefs

Peace, prosperity and disaster management

Cooperation in disaster management is a key element of building peace and prosperity in North-East Asia, a high-level regional conference has been told.
29 Apr 2014 News briefs

Recognising resilience innovation in the Pacific

To help mark the approaching 10th anniversary of the Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA), the global strategy for reducing disaster losses worldwide, the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) Sub-Regional Office for the Pacific today launched the inaugural Pacific Innovation and Leadership Award for Resilience (PILAR), a pioneering initiative in the region.
24 Apr 2014 News briefs

‘DRR is development’ says Central Asia

A final season of regional consultations with governments on the Post-2015 agreement on disaster risk reduction got underway this week in Almaty, Kazakhstan, as top disaster management officials from eight countries in Central Asia and the Southern Caucasus came together.
4 Apr 2014 News briefs

Making Paris resilient to floods

The French capital, Paris, has been invited to join the “Making Cities Resilient” Campaign by the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction as a new OECD analysis reveals the extent of the city’s exposure to a repeat of a major flood disaster. The OECD Review on Flood Risk Management of the Seine River – commissioned by Etablissement Public Territorial de Bassin (EPTB) Seine Grands Lacs, with the Ministry of Ecology and Ile-de-France Regional Council – found that a repeat of the 1910 flood could affect up to five million residents and cause Euros 30 billion worth of damages. Speaking at the launch of the report, UNISDR Chief, Margareta Wahlström, said: “Making Paris resilient is an important strategic goal for France. Floods displace more people worldwide, create more unemployment and disrupt city life more than any other category of disaster.
28 Jan 2014 News briefs

Pacific forges ahead on joint disaster-climate strategy

United Nations agencies have joined together to contribute towards the development a new Strategy for Disaster and Climate Resilient Development in the Pacific (SRDP). As a core partner of the Technical Working Group for the new Strategy along with the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) and Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) hosted and engaged expert representatives from UNDP, UNICEF, WHO and UN Women amongst others, to join in an interactive engagement workshop on 20 January 2014. The workshop formed part of a series of ongoing stakeholder engagements to facilitate the development of a new strategy to succeed the current ‘Pacific Disaster Risk Reduction and Disaster Management Framework for Action’ and ‘Pacific Islands Framework for Action on Climate Change’, both due to expire in 2015.
21 Jan 2014 News briefs

‘Useful and used’ data key to building resilience

The future resilience of the planet rests upon shortening the distance between emerging scientific evidence and actionable policy. A High-Level Panel, titled ‘Perspectives on the Value of Earth Observations’, agreed on the importance of the “usability of information” in the International Strategy of Disaster Reduction and other global efforts to strengthen resilience. Mr Achim Steiner, Executive Director of the UN Environmental Programme (UNEP), said collaboration and coordination was crucial: “We need to join up the dots about what we know about how resources can be used and not be used in future. “The world really is heading terribly in the wrong direction. We need to bring science to decision making. And in such a complex world, we can no longer afford the luxury of taking very narrow, specific responses.
20 Jan 2014 News briefs

SDGs open way for ‘resilient development’

“Disaster risk reduction should not be seen only as an imperative to protecting investments in development, but also as an opportunity for a transformative shift towards resilient development.” This rousing statement from disaster-prone Bangladesh was one of several calls from governments for disaster and climate risk considerations to be incorporated at every stage of development. The seventh session of the Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals heard consistent support for the integration of disaster risk management within each sector that may be addressed by the goals, such as poverty eradication, energy, health, food security.
15 Jan 2014 News briefs

Local self-assessment leads to resilience

UNISDR’s Local Government Self-Assessment Tool (LGSAT) is an effective tool to assess a city’s institutional capacity to build resilience, a new report has found. The study said the LGSAT opened up dialogue and enabled the establishment of baseline data for the Ten Essentials of UNISDR’s Making Cities Resilient Campaign “that can be used to track progress as the cities continue to build disaster and climate resilience”. The report, titled ‘Assessing City Resilience: Lessons from using the UNISDR Local Government Self-Assessment Tool in Thailand and Vietnam’, said the LGSAT enabled local discussions to take place within an internationally-applied framework of common issues. The study looked at four cities – Hue and Lao Cai, in Vietnam, and Udon Thani and Hat Yai, in Thailand – and identified gaps between policy and practice, and between planning and implementation.
10 Jan 2014 News briefs

GETI supports model Haiyan recovery effort

The Philippines province of Cebu is emerging as a model for recovery four months after Typhoon Haiyan devastated large parts of the country. Cebu Resilience Taskforce Coordinator Baltz Tribunalo identified several factors behind progress, including vital capacity building support from the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR). Expert trainers from UNISDR’s Global Education and Training Institute (GETI), based in Incheon, South Korea and International Recovery Platform, based in Kobe, Japan, provided hands-on mentoring at a Disaster Recovery Planning workshop in Cebu City, drawing on the province’s recovery plans as well as feeding in lessons learnt on resilience building from around the world. “The most useful element of the training was its consistent message that disaster risk reduction has to have a central part in the complete package of recovery and rehabilitation,” said Mr Tribunalo, who is also adviser to Cebu Governor Hilario Davide III on climate smart disaster risk management.
10 Jan 2014 News briefs

Hard-hit herders move to reduce their disaster risk

Herders whose livestock was devastated by a cyclone are taking steps to reduce their vulnerability and exposure to future disasters. A combination of freakish freezing temperatures, high winds and severe floods after a cyclone in November in Puntland, Somalia, hit several communities hard. Dozens of people died and up to one million livestock were wiped out, according to a post-cyclone operations update from the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC). In the wake of the disaster some herders have sought to reduce their disaster risk by finding areas that afford better protection from extreme weather events for themselves and their livestock.
8 Jan 2014 News briefs

Philippines unveils dedicated disaster risk budget for 2014

The Philippines’ national budget for 2014 has ensured dedicated funding for disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation programmes. The move, just weeks after the devastation of Typhoon Haiyan, represents a significant change in the country’s funding priorities to include proactive disaster risk management as well as a focus on response and rehabilitation. A new US$293 million National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Fund replaces what was previously known as the Calamity Fund, which had a previous budget of US$158 million.
30 Dec 2013 News briefs

Dominican Republic approves disaster risk plan

The Dominican Republic has adopted a new ‘National Plan for Comprehensive Disaster Risk Management’. The President of the Dominican Republic, Danilo Medina, approved the plan that will define policy guidelines and basic principles for public and private institutions and civil society organizations. The plan focuses on the implementation of programmes that reduce disaster risk, ensure the safety of citizens and protect the country’s economic, social, environmental and cultural heritage.
26 Dec 2013 News briefs

Cyclone evacuation to become a global example

The effective evacuation of almost 1 million people in Odisha ahead of Cyclone Phailin will be highlighted as a global example in the lead-up to the 3rd World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction, in 2015. The Head of the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR), Ms Margareta Wahlström, lauded Odisha for its ‘landmark success’ actions in limiting the number of deaths directly caused by the cyclone to 21. “We have started work on documenting the Odisha success story and will highlight it as an example at the World Conference. It is easy to talk about problems and failures. We have to bring into people’s minds what works,” Ms Wahlström said.
23 Dec 2013 News briefs

Cebu ready to build back better

The Philippines Province of Cebu prides itself on its zero casualty policy when it comes to disasters. As of yesterday, it had recorded just 73 of the 6,057 deaths so far attributed to Typhoon Haiyan despite the widespread damage and loss to housing, critical infrastructure and agriculture especially in northern Cebu where Haiyan made two of its six landfalls in the Philippines. Governor Hilario Davide III explained: “I would credit the low fatalities first to the people themselves and the local government units who heeded our advice and warnings to evacuate people from the areas that were most vulnerable to the typhoon.” Some estimates put the number of people who evacuated in Cebu as high as one million. The Governor also said that the earthquake which hit in October may have been a strange blessing in disguise as it gave people a sharp reminder of the threat posed by natural hazards.
16 Dec 2013 News briefs

Bieber puts spotlight on disaster zone schools

Pop idol Justin Bieber paid a surprise visit to the San Jose Elementary School in Tacloban this week. He stayed about 30 minutes, hugged the kids, sang a few songs, signed some autographs and landed on the front pages of all the Philippine newspapers. If nothing else, his visit brought a spotlight to bear on the precarious lives of thousands of children with no school to go to for the last four weeks. Over 600 schools were destroyed by Typhoon Haiyan. Despite a government instruction for classes to re-open on December 2, many, such as the Anibong Elementary School overlooking the ship-strewn shoreline of the neighbourhoods known as barangays 68 and 70, remain packed with evacuees.
13 Dec 2013 News briefs

UN sets the stage for adoption of a new global agreement on disaster risk in 2015

The United Nations General Assembly has set the stage for a new global agreement on reducing the impact of disasters by confirming that the 3rd World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction will take place in Sendai City, Japan from 14 to 18 March 2015. The main item on the Conference agenda is agreement on a successor to the Hyogo Framework for Action which was adopted at the last such Conference in 2005 within weeks of the Indian Ocean tsunami and which was attended by representatives from 168 UN Member States. Over 8,000 people are expected to attend the 2015 event including heads of State, government ministers, parliamentarians, academics, NGO and other civil society representatives. UNISDR Chief Margareta Wahlström said: “The 3rd World Conference provides us with a rare opportunity to forge universal agreement on how to build disaster resilience across all sectors of society. It is particularly important that we have a strong urban focus as we expect 75% of the world’s population to be living in towns and cities by 2050.” Sendai City is the capital city of Miyagi Prefecture in the Tōhoku region with a population of one million people. In March 2011, it was one of the cities affected by the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami, which killed over 15,000 people and is one of the costliest disasters in history. Ms. Emiko Okuyama, the Mayor of Sendai City, today unveiled the Conference logo. She said: “This logo was designed by a local designer and represents people joining hands to create a chain of action. The five colours stand for the five priorities of Hyogo Framework for Action (2005-2015): Building the Resilience of Nations and Communities to Disasters which brought the concept of resilience into the mainstream of development thinking. We look forward to hosting the Conference and to welcoming the world to the Tohoku region which has made a strong recovery from the Great East Japan Earthquake.”
12 Dec 2013 Press release

Re-location, re-location, re-location…

The ground floor patients including those in intensive care had a narrow escape. Indeed, as the tidal surge broke through the hospital’s perimeter wall security guards had to come and rescue the director of Leyte Island’s largest public hospital, the Eastern Visayas Regional Medical Center (EVRMC), as he struggled waist deep in water in his hospital residence overlooking the sea. Dr. Cirilo R. Galindez who is now on secondment from Luzon as acting hospital director, describes the frenetic activity following the slow realization that the hospital was about to be inundated by sea-water as a result of Typhoon Haiyan in the early dawn hours of November 8. “In about twenty minutes they had to move all the patients from the ground floor to the second floor including those in the intensive care unit. The staff did a superb job and there were no casualties among the patients,” he said.
12 Dec 2013 News briefs

Private sector to the fore in Haiyan response

Private sector representatives took their place today alongside the usual line-up of NGOs and international organizations who came together to brainstorm a rehabilitation plan for those parts of Cebu province which suffered significant losses because of Typhoon Haiyan (known in the Philippines as Yolanda). Governor Hilario Davide III said the plan would be ready for launch in mid-January and praised the private sector for its active partnership with the provincial government in both the relief effort and now in the planning for the rehabilitation phase. “Public-private partnerships will become increasingly important as we move from the response phase to rehabilitation and seek to build back better,” he said.
11 Dec 2013 News briefs
The United Nations General Assembly requested UNISDR to facilitate the development of a post-2015 framework for disaster risk reduction The United Nations General Assembly requested UNISDR to facilitate the development of a post-2015 framework for disaster risk reduction.
  • Where We Work Our regional office is in Cairo, Egypt.
  • Where We Work Our regional office is in Nairobi, Kenya.
  • Where We Work Our regional office is in Panama City, Panama.
  • Where We Work Our regional office is in Bangkok, Thailand.
  • Where We Work Our regional office is in Brussels, Belgium.

Where We Work

CONNECT WITH US