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of the Second Session, Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction
     
   
   
 
Wednesday, 17 June 2009
 
   
   
Final Summary
Monday, 22 June 2009
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Second Session of the Global Platform 
for Disaster Risk Reduction

15-19 June 2009 |Geneva, Switzerland

 
L-R: UN Under Secretary-General John Holmes with Johan Schaar, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Sweden.  
Highlights for Wednesday, 
17 June 2009


On Wednesday, participants continued their discussions in high-level panel sessions on reducing risk in a changing climate, and on enabling community-led resilience through preventive action. There were also two roundtables: local authorities on urban risk reduction; and roles of ecosystems in disaster risk reduction. 

The informal plenary continued to focus on preparations for the Hyogo Framework of Action mid-term review by identifying challenges and best practices in disaster risk reduction, as well as financing and climate change adaptation.

In the afternoon, the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies launched this year’s World Disasters Report, which focuses on the need for developing an “Early Warning, Early Action” approach that would protect people from disasters.

HIGH-LEVEL PANEL ON REDUCING DISASTER RISK IN A CHANGING CLIMATE

L-R: The dais of the high-level panel on reducing risk in climate change with Kristie Ebi, IPCC; Carlos Costa Posada, Minister of Environment, Housing and Territorial Development, Colombia; Michel Jarraud, World Meteorological Organization; Håkon Gulbrandsen, State Secretary, International Development, Norway; UN Under Secretary-General John Holmes; Johan Schaar, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Sweden, Silvia Llosa, UNISDR; Gareth Thomas, Member of Parliament, United Kingdom. 

Carlos Costa Posada, Minister of the Environment, Housing and Territorial Development, Colombia, said that “we still do not know how to adapt to climate change” and called for flexibility in “learning by doing.”
Håkon Gulbrandsen, State Secretary International Development, Norway, said sustainable long-term solutions and resource allocation to disaster risk reduction are of key importance.
Gareth Thomas, Minister of International Development, UK, highlighted the need for an effective agreement on climate change in Copenhagen that incorporates disaster risk reduction.

Kristie Ebi, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), informed participants of a forthcoming special IPCC report on disaster risk responses, and issued a call for nominations to people from the disaster risk reduction process to contribute to the report. 
Michel Jarraud, World Meteorological Organization (WMO), noted an increase in the frequency and intensity of climate-related natural disasters and stressed the need for immediate action and for targeted information that allows policymakers to develop effective adaptation policy frameworks. 

HIGH-LEVEL PANEL ON ENABLING COMMUNITY RESILIENCE THROUGH PREVENTIVE ACTION

Mohammad Saidur Rahman, Disaster Preparedness Centre, Bangladesh, moderated this high-level panel session on community-led resilience. 
Bekele Geleta, Secretary-General, International Federation of Red Cross, addressed the linkages between early warning and community resilience, emphasizing that community-led resilience is a prerequisite for a safer future.
Ana Lucy Bengochea, Chair, Comité Garifuna, Honduras, stressed the importance of protecting livelihoods, linking disaster and development aid and empowering the community, especially women, in disaster recovery and reconstruction.

INFORMAL PLENARY

The informal plenary, co-chaired by Margarita Wahlström, UNISDR and Michel Jaraud, WMO, discussed concrete steps toward mainstreaming disaster risk reduction and conducting the mid-term review of the Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA). 

ROUNDTABLE ON LOCAL AUTHORITIES AND URBAN RISK REDUCTION

Bhichit Rattakul, Asian Disaster Preparedness Center, Bangkok, said the most effective way of combating climate change in an urban setting is to approach it as part of a holistic urban risk reduction plan.
L-R: Narayan Gopal Malego, Mayor of Katmandu, Nepal, and Violeta Seva, Earthquakes and Megacities, the Philippines, co-chairs of the session. 
ROUNDTABLE ON THE ROLE OF ECOSYSTEMS IN DISASTER RISK REDUCTION

Richard Munang, UNEP, described the cycle that governs ecosystem degradation, which has a direct impact on the most vulnerable communities.
Anders Wijkman, Member of the European Parliament, Sweden, lamented that many people continue to live by the myth of endless resources and an endless capacity for the environment to absorb man-made emissions.
Ibrahim Thiaw, UNEP, chaired the roundtable on the role of ecosystem management in climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction.


SNAPSHOTS

WORLD DISASTERS REPORT 2009

On Wednesday 16 June, the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies launched the World Disasters Report (WDR) 2009. This year’s report focuses on the need for developing an “Early Warning, Early Action” approach that would protect people from disasters. The report also highlights the high financial costs of disasters, with evidence indicating that it costs four times as much to deal with disasters after they happen than to put the measures in place to protect people and property beforehand.

Michelle McNabb, Lead Author, WDR 2009, said early action saves lives, earlier actions can protect livelihoods.
Loren Legarda, Senator, the Philippines, said the WDR is among the most important and relevant publications for the disaster relief community. 
Maryam Golnaraghi, WMO, noted that thanks to early warning systems the number of lives lost in disasters has decreased.

AROUND THE MARKETPLACE

 

   
   
Related Links
Related Links for Disaster Risk Reduction

Website of the UN International Strategy for Risk Reduction
Website of the Second Session of the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction
Session documents: Provisional Annotated Agenda, Provisional Timetable, and Calendar of Events

IISD RS resources

IISD RS coverage of the Second African Regional Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) Consultative Meeting, 5-7 May 2009, Nairobi, Kenya
IISD RS coverage of the First Session of the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction, 4-7 June 2007, Geneva, Switzerland
IISD RS coverage of the World Conference on Disaster Reduction, 18-22 January 2005, Kobe-Hyogo, Japan
IISD RS coverage of the World Conference on Disaster Reduction - Prepcom-1, 6-7 May 2004, Geneva, Switzerland
IISD RS coverage of the Second Conference on Early Warning, 16-18 October 2003, Bonn, Germany 
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MEA Bulletin- Newsletter on key MEAs and their secretariats
Climate-L.org - News and information on the actions of international organizations in responding to the problem of global climate change
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