News

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Small islands lead by example, says UNISDR chief

Statement by Margareta Wahlström, the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Disaster Risk Reduction on the launch of the International Year of Small Island Developing States
24 Feb 2014 Statements & speeches

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

Pacific unites on development agenda

The small islands of the Pacific continue to lead the world in efforts to unite climate change and disaster risk reduction initiatives under one development agenda. “Sustainable development for us is a matter of national security,” said Mr David Sheppard, the Director General of the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), before a packed forum entitled ‘Meeting the sustainability challenge in the post-2015 era: A vision for resilient nations, large and small’. “We are working to protect people and the environment and that means we have to support livelihoods in a way that reinforces sustainable development and builds on the rich tradition of human settlement in the Pacific. There are many examples of Pacific solutions being tailored for Pacific problems.”
20 Nov 2013 News briefs

Farmers reap fruits of risk management

Fijian papaya farmers and exporters whose businesses were devastated by a 2012 cyclone are emerging from near bankruptcy with better protected livelihoods thanks to a stronger approach to disaster risk management. Last December’s Cyclone Evan decimated crops and slashed papaya exports by almost 90 per cent prompting an industry-wide rethink on how such a catastrophic experience could be minimized in future. As a result, beleaguered farmers and exporters are changing practices to address increasing climate extremes: production is spreading away from traditional crop heartlands; budgets increasingly factor in contingency for disasters; planting is on smaller blocks and a more regular basis; seed trees are selected to suit local conditions more; and bigger stocks of seed are in store to accelerate post-disaster recovery.
31 Oct 2013 News briefs

UNISDR training puts DRR top of the news

A global initiative to increase coverage of disaster risk reduction issues in the media culminated last week in the Pacific. ECHO and the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) jointly organized the series of workshops, which has trained more than 100 journalists from 45 countries. An intensive two-day forum in Suva, Fiji, was the final event of the series, which also included trainings in Lao PDR, Myanmar, Philippines, Tanzania, Tunisia, and Switzerland.
22 Oct 2013 News briefs

Island states plot safe course to Samoa

Small Island Developing States will this week seek to plot a course to a safer and more resilient future as part of their preparations for a major conference next year. The Inter-regional preparatory meeting for the Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States (SIDS), which opens today in Bridgetown, Barbados, brings together nations from the three SIDS regions – Caribbean, Pacific and the Atlantic, Indian Ocean, Mediterranean South China Seas (AIMS) – to forge the way forward.
26 Aug 2013 News briefs

Unified strategy provides ‘more bang for your buck’

World-leading efforts to unite climate change adaptation and disaster risk management into one overarching strategy will provide ‘more bang for your buck’ a senior Pacific development leader says. The Director-General of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community, Dr Jimmie Rodgers, said future generations would judge today’s leaders on how bold their actions – not words – were in building safer and more resilient communities and countries.
15 Aug 2013 News briefs

‘The fact we learn so slowly means we pay for it in dollars’

“Neither disasters nor climate change is an issue for the future it’s an issue for today. The fact that we learn so slowly means we are paying for it – and we are paying in dollars” – the Head of the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) Ms Margareta Wahlström challenges the world to strengthen its approach to disaster risk management and reverse the escalation in direct economic losses from disasters. Ms Wahlström was interviewed for this TVNZ news report while at the 2013 Joint Meeting of the Pacific Platform for Disaster Risk Management and Pacific Climate Change Roundtable in Fiji, this month.
22 Jul 2013 News briefs

'This bridge has been destroyed six times so now we build it higher and stronger'

The leader of Fiji’s disaster-hit Western Division has pledged to forge an integrated cross-sectoral strategy to achieve a safer and more resilient future. Western Division Commissioner Mr Joeli Cawaki and his team of technical experts told the head of the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR), Ms Margareta Wahlström, that integrated planning and action was vital after being hit by two serious floods and a major cyclone in 2012.
19 Jul 2013 News briefs

Tonga's motto inspires leaders to safeguard a resilient inheritance

"God and Tonga are my inheritance" – the motto of this Pacific Kingdom – has inspired its leaders to move to safeguard their country for future generations. Their efforts represent an inspiring example of ambitious disaster and climate resilient development steered by strong national leadership that is based on community ownership.
17 Jul 2013 News briefs

Pacific environment leader warns: ‘We will be the first to go under’

The head of a major Pacific regional organization said the region’s acute vulnerability left it no alternative but to lead the world in integrating risk reduction and climate change action into one over-arching strategy to secure a sustainable future. The Director General of the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), Dr David Sheppard, said the Pacific would rise to the challenge but they needed the world to join efforts too.
16 Jul 2013 News briefs

‘Recovery the key to future relevance of Pacific regional organisations’

A landmark study says that regional organizations involved in disaster risk management in the Pacific will have to demonstrate excellence in technical assistance and be aligned to international financial flows to remain relevant.
15 Jul 2013 News briefs

Pacific provides perfect springboard for HFA2 discussions

The UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) today praised the Pacific for providing a 'perfect springboard' into the coming 18 months during which the world will prepare a new, longer term and more ambitious post-2015 framework to achieve safer and more resilient communities and nations.
11 Jul 2013 Press release

Bank chief urges business to lend its resilience wisdom

Businesses that bounced back quickly from a recent spate of disasters have a lot to teach policymakers and community leaders about resilience, a banking executive told a major Pacific development forum today.
10 Jul 2013 News briefs

'Like our ancestors, if we have the heart, we can do it'

Pacific government ministers today said community leadership was the key to success of innovative approaches to integrated climate change and disaster risk reduction action across the region.
9 Jul 2013 News briefs

UNISDR chief: integrated action will help billions and save trillions

The Head of the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR), Margareta Wahlström, today hailed the Pacific as it committed to a world first of integrating action in disaster risk management and climate change in one strategy to secure a sustainable future for this increasingly threatened region.
8 Jul 2013 Press release

Pacific goes to work early on disaster risk reduction

Every day the Pacific wakes up and goes to work ahead of the rest of the world and next week it will do the same as it kicks off a series of regional consultations that will shape the successor agreement to the Hyogo Framework for Action after 2015.
4 Jul 2013 News briefs

Pacific Platform moves on Post-HFA agreement

UNISDR Chief, Margareta Wahlström, today welcomed a major policy decision by Pacific Island States to help formulate a new international framework on disaster risk reduction to replace the current Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA) in 2015.
20 Sep 2012 News briefs

Pacific Platform opens with call for change

The 4th Session of the Pacific Platform for Disaster Risk Management opened today with a strong call for Pacific Island Countries and Territories, and donors to address the challenges of climate change in a smarter way.
17 Sep 2012 News briefs

Fiji declares 15 day state of disaster

A 15-day state of disaster is currently in effect in areas on the west coast of Fiji that have been ravaged by floods which began on 22 January. A flood watch is in place as periods of heavy rain are expected. All those living in flood-prone areas have been advised to evacuate and take with them food, water and a change of clothes. As of today, there are 21 active evacuation centres with a total of 1,333 evacuees.
3 Feb 2012 News briefs

Children and Young People in the Pacific "Step up for Disaster Risk Reduction!"

The UNISDR Sub-Regional Office in Suva together with its partners, held a Pacific regional celebration of the International Day for Disaster Reduction to highlight the role of children and youth as active partners in disaster risk reduction.
13 Oct 2011 News briefs

Action as Water Runs Out in Tuvalu

Amidst growing concerns about drought crises in some of the Small Island Developing States (SIDS) of the Pacific, the Government of Tuvalu today began a three-week nationwide needs assessment of water, agriculture and health facilities.
10 Oct 2011 News briefs

Pacific Platform for Disaster Risk Management launches UN report warning of rising economic losses due to disasters and climate change

The Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction (GAR11) titled Revealing Risk, Redefining Development will be launched today in Auckland (New Zealand) at the Third Session of the Pacific Platform for Disaster Risk Management which is the main gathering of disaster risk management experts and decision makers in the Pacific region.
3 Aug 2011 News briefs

Lami signs up to the World Disaster Reduction Campaign: Making the Pacific Resilient – My community is getting ready!

In a signing ceremony held in Lami on 8th March 2011, Special Administrator Suva/Lami Mr. Chandu Umaria signed Lami’s Certificate of Commitment to Disaster Resilience for the 2010-2011 World Disaster Reduction Campaign “Making Cities Resilient“. Lami is the first Pacific island city to join the global campaign coordinated by the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UNISDR).
8 Mar 2011 Press release

Margareta Wahlstrom in Cairns to talk about disaster resilience and risk reduction

In the lead-up to Cancun, the City of Cairns is a local government that is already taking action in DRR and CCA. Empowering local governments to engage in DRR is the world’s hope to build resilience against climate change.
1 Dec 2010 News briefs

UNISDR Pacific

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www.unisdr.org/suva

This is sub-regional office of Asia and Pacific.

Regional Platforms for Disaster Risk Reduction take place from Africa to the Pacific Regional Platforms for Disaster Risk Reduction take place from Africa to the Pacific.

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