Disaster Risk Reduction Strategies and Risk Management Practices: critical elements for adaptation to climate change
The two main elements that give rise to risk are the hazards – the potential damaging events or phenomenon – and the vulnerability of populations to these hazards. Natural hazards by themselves do not cause disasters; it is the combination of an exposed, vulnerable and ill-prepared population or community with a hazard event that results in a disaster. Human activity, such as land use changes, environmental exploitation and unplanned settlement, often exacerbates the level of disaster risk.
The paper suggests that three immediate and cost-effective areas where action can be taken to advance adaptation to climate change through disaster risk reduction are:
- Risk assessments
- Early warning systems
- Sector-specific risk reduction plans
The report gives the following concluding recommendations:
- recognise the necessity and relevance of disaster risk reduction strategies and risk management mechanisms as a first line of defence against the impacts of climate change.
- build upon existing strategies and mechanisms for disaster risk reduction and risk management.
- take account of, and manage, the humanitarian consequences of climate change, and protect human security, through the systematic reduction of disaster risks.
- ensure that substantial and additional human and financial resources are available for disaster risk reduction and risk management.
- ensure that the criteria for funding are fully consistent with the principles of the Hyogo Framework.