Session FT 5.06
Sharing Experiences for water-related disaster risk management
UNESCAP/WMO Typhoon Committee (TC)
International Flood Network (IFNet)
Typhoons, hurricanes, cyclones and other extreme weather phenomena have frequently been inflicting catastrophic losses upon human lives and socio-economic conditions.
The objectives of the session are:
- To promote good practices of local actions through sharing extensive experiences in risk management of water-related disasters, especially floods, of Members of the Typhoon Committee (TC) and other countries through the International Flood Network (IFNet).
- To promote policies and strategies, making use of best practices and appropriate countermeasures from these good practices, for water-related disaster risk management to reduce human and socio-economic losses.
- To enhance partnership between the TC, IFNet and other initiatives for more effective exchange of experiences and knowledge.
Effective integrated water resource management strategies could lead to the establishment of a sound framework on disaster risk management of water-related disasters, especially floods. Such a framework would enable effective integration of water-related disaster risk management measures into socio-economic development process for rapid and sustainable economic growth of developing countries.
Adopting strategic framework for international cooperation, through results-based approach (RCPIP) and flagship initiative (GFAS) is of importance to enhance complementarity among partners and to promote more active participation. These achievements would need to be supported by expansion of partnership to contribute to the implementation of the Hyogo Framework for Action, 2005-2015: Building Resilience of Communities and Nations to Disasters.
The number deaths from natural disasters in Asia and the Pacific increased from 85 per cent of the world total (from 1900 to 1987) to 91 per cent from (1900 to 2005) and economic loss increased from 25 per cent of the world total (for the period 1900-1987) to 54 per cent for the period (1900-2005). During the five decades from 1950 to 2005, the number of people killed by natural disasters in Asia and the Pacific totaled over 5.5 million, of which cyclones and floods accounted for 54 per cent, and the total economic loss was estimated at over US$588 billion, of which 57 per cent was caused by cyclones and floods.
During the past 15 years, the annual average number of deaths by cyclones and floods has reduced to about 16,700 people while the annual damage has increased to US$15 billion in Asia and the Pacific from the corresponding figures of 54,000 people and US$6 billion in the past five decades.
The challenges are therefore how to further improve the rate of reduction in the loss of lives and to reduce the rate of increase in economic damage of water-related disasters, especially cyclones and floods.
The experiences of local actions presented by TC and IFNet partners pointed out various good practices and valuable lessons learned in terms of integration of water-related disaster risk management measures into socio-economic development process. It demonstrated the need to take appropriate actions to enhance the resilience of communities to disasters as part of proactive approaches such as provision of disaster risk information and establishing an effective system for the risk management.
Orientations for action
Partnership and Experiences Sharing towards Reducing Human Losses: It is essential to promote cooperation among the water-related disaster management partners by build on existing initiatives such as the Typhoon Committee(TC) and the International Flood Network(IFNet) in order to achieve human losses reduction by floods.
Integrated approaches to water-related disaster risk management: Water-related disaster risk management should be conceived as part of the common efforts on integrated water resources management (IWRM), taking into consideration the socio-economic aspects of water-related disaster risks which need to be well appreciated by key stakeholders, particularly decision makers and financing institutions to enable formulation of proper strategies.
Promotion of priority measures for better disaster preparedness: Effective flood early warning and evacuation system suitable for the situation of each country must be established, so that quick evacuation of residents from dangerous areas is rightly performed. In addition, priority measures as flood risk analysis, flood hazard mapping, trainings and drills for preparedness, would need to be further promoted.
Local actions presented
Flood risk-management and water resources strategy-formulation in Nepal
Nepal former state economic planning commissioner for water resources
Global Flood Alert System (GFAS) project
Regional cooperation programme of Working Group on Hydrology