September 16, 2019
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Disaster Risk Reduction

ECOSOC: United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

Topic: Disaster Risk Reduction

There are a great many possible forms a natural disaster might take, and the destruction wrought is usually immense. Fortunately, the international community is almost always willing to participate in disaster-relief, which leaves the United Nations Development Programme to deal with problems of infrastructure, building design, urban and municipal planning, and methods of coordinating with and providing timely warning to potentially affected populations. Key information includes knowledge of how to predict, prepare for, or even prevent natural disasters. All of these goals require a diligent study of the relevant science so as to provide a comprehensive picture of the problem to be solved.

Broadly speaking, disaster risk reduction consists of two parts: blunting the direct harm of the disaster itself, and quickly and efficiently dealing with the fallout that does inevitably occur. Both require a high degree of preparedness and significant up-front costs, but such costs pale in comparison to those which would be incurred by an unprepared state. Atmospheric monitoring can detect tropical storms many days away, and allow for the evacuation of potentially affected areas with minimal loss of life. Study of seismic activity may allow earthquakes or volcanic eruptions to be foreseen, and can certainly provide early warning of tsunamis; construction techniques can be improved to increase survivability of buildings. Dams can help to control and prevent the flooding of river systems, though the potential for other environmental effects requires careful evaluation of the regional ecosystem. Addressing larger systemic issues, robust medical, transportation, sanitation, and power-distribution infrastructure allows rapid distribution of people and resources in preparation for disaster, and simplifies maintaining continuity of service when disaster does strike, to say nothing of facilitating the delivery of aid. Further, effective disaster risk reduction requires that evacuation or delivery routes, mass communications technology, and civil facilities placement be considered essential components of any development plan. Finally, while the effects of disasters on concentrated or urban populations must certainly be addressed, the more widespread devastation visited on rural populations presents its own set of challenges which cannot be ignored. Whereas disruption of city infrastructure makes planning and mitigation difficult for large numbers of people in a relatively confined area, more isolated rural populations may not have infrastructure to begin with, which further complicates preparation and recovery – especially when multiple regions are affected simultaneously.

Disasters, both natural and manmade, strike without regard to national borders, and the harm they cause is inversely correlated with preparedness. It is therefore in the interest of the member states of the United Nations Development Programme to work together to develop ways to improve readiness and response. The old aphorism that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure would seem to apply – and the result can only be to save lives and improve rates of recovery.

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Submitted Position Papers

Olivia Ahrens

Belgium

UNDP

 

Belgium is prone to one main disaster, flooding. Heavy rain has caused severe flash flooding and mudslides. Back in 2010, Belgium has one of the worst floods in 50 years. This flood killed over 2 people and 200 houses.

   The Belgium government has tried to prevent this by building in less-flood prone areas and building dams. They have a forecast flood warning system to help people get to more safe areas. By making a flood prevention plan as well, Belgium has prevented risks of floods in most areas.

The government has received help to prevent floods. The government has drawn up a map for the citizens to help them live in less flood risk zones. The New EU directive has made new strategies to help prevent floods.

 

Works Cited:

https://www.climatechangepost.com/belgium/river-floods/

https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/be.html

 

  • Belgium
  • Olivia Ahrens

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Hrudy Peela

Saudi Arabia

ECOSOC UNDP

Disaster Risk Reduction

Saudi Arabia is a nation prone to numerous natural disasters such as flooding, earthquakes, volcanoes and water scarcity. In the last 30 years, there have been 14 natural disasters, affecting over 30,000 citizens and costing the economy over $450 million. Floods have been a prevalent issue affecting mainly urban areas, this is an increasing risk as a result of increasing sea levels. The flooding of  Jeddah in 2009 has been a crucial wake-up call to the government in establishing more response programs and development of better infrastructure.

The Saudi Arabian government has taken many steps to advance (DRM) disaster risk management since the flooding of Jeddah. The Presidency of Meteorology and Environment was designated to focus on disaster risk reduction efforts, while the Civil Defense Ministry of Interior is responsible for emergency planning and response. To further advance DRM agenda the government has: continually carried out risk assessments and updates to preparedness strategies, strengthening land-use planning, and enforcing certain building codes, and carrying out warning system tests to ensure effective use.

The Saudi Arabian government has received a lot of help to carry out these programs from the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR). In many Middle Eastern countries including Saudi Arabia, the GFDRR has set up the development of a Regional Overview of Natural Disasters, knowledge exchange conferences, and post-disaster training. After the flooding of Jeddah, the GFDRR supported the development of a damage and loss assessment, as per a request from the government to strengthen disaster risk information. In an ongoing agreement since 2011, the GFDRR supported a preliminary multi-hazard risk profile. This will serve as critical input to a World Bank project of a similar cause. The GFDRR has provided over 2 million US dollars worth of grants for the Saudi Arabian Government in 2017 for disaster risk reduction. Organizations like the GFDRR can help many countries around the world, and get them back up on their feet.

Saudi Arabia has also been a huge contributor to disaster help in other nations. Donations from the nation have helped many of its neighbors. In 2018 alone, the government donated over $400 million to natural disaster prevention and relief around the world, falling short of certain western countries’ donations. Saudi Arabia believes that working together can help us drastically reduce the impact of disasters and allow for better response.

  • Saudi Arabia
  • Hrudy Peela

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ECOSOC – UNDP

Hungary

Mustafa Sharba

Disaster Risk Reduction

Natural Disasters have been and will remain a big issue is our world today if they are not reduced. Annually, 90,000 people are killed because of natural disasters, while 160 million are affected. These natural disasters, which include earthquakes, tsunamis, droughts, etc., cause many people to lose their homes, migrate, lose jobs which in return cause a chain reaction that has disastrous consequences worldwide.

As Hungary is greatly threatened by risks of floods and earthquakes, it fully understands the issue at hand. In 1970, Hungary was hit by one of the most disastrous floods up until 1990. This flood caused more than 300 fatalities and over 500 million dollars in damage. As years went by more and more floods hit and the cost due to them kept rising. Annually, 200,00 people are affected by flooding, and GDP is affected by 2 billion dollars. Hungary’s worst earthquake up until 1990 took place in 1911 and caused great damage to the country. The rise in damage costs caused Hungary’s economy to lower and overall damaged people’s lives. Between, 2005 and 2014, Hungary lost about 49 million dollars due to natural disasters. 

 

Hungary has come at this issue through many ways. Tractable is a company that develops AI solutions for accidents and disaster recovery. This allows for faster settlement of claims and restoration of livelihood. Another way Hungary is combatting the issue is through Drone Hopper. Drone Hopper designs, manufactures and operates heavy-duty, multi-rotor unmanned drones that are intended to be used mainly for wildfires, urban firefighting and agricultural operations. Hungary alerts about natural disasters through Serinus. Serinus provides alarms and crisis management solutions. Its web-based solutions trigger alerts to inform and coordinate all key players and keep track of critical situations, quickly and easily. Since Hungary is greatly affected by floods, it uses Tenevia which uses image sensors to monitor water levels to mitigate the threat of flood. Its system deploys digital surveillance cameras along rivers in order to assess water levels, surface speed and flow. Hungary believes that if it worked with other European nations that share similar ideas on improving this technology, a lot can be accomplished in helping reduce the risk of natural disasters not just in Europe, but worldwide.

 

  • Hungary
  • Mustafa Sharba

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United Nations Development Programme 

Disaster Risk Reduction 

Australia

Mia Valiotis 

Troy High School 

Natural disasters kill 60,000 people worldwide a year. The United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) provides roles and enforces mandates that issues responsibility to agencies in collaboration with the United Nations and the World Bank. This work is in effort to support both domestic and international endeavors to prevent disaster risk and supply resources to those affected by natural disasters. The International Strategy for Disaster Reduction and World Conference on Disaster Reduction aims to reduce said disaster risk and establishes a framework for implementing these actions. 

Floods, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, and bushfires are hazards of risk in Australia, seeing an increase of frequency and graveness among the region. Australia has also estimated 17.7 billion dollars in annual economic losses, with domestic efforts to implement new programs and initiatives that promote action for disaster resilience and action for rising change in global temperatures, with additional efforts for national preparedness in disaster prevention.

Australia hopes to collaborate with other countries in efforts to use funds and increase aid  to help other countries adopt the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, and establish roles and mandates that can help disaster resilience and aid around the globe, including awareness and education about specific disasters such as earthquakes, hurricanes, wildfires, and tornadoes. 

 

WORKS CITED 

https://research.un.org/en/disaster/un-resources

 

https://ourworldindata.org/natural-disasters

 

https://www.unisdr.org/

 

https://www.disasterassist.gov.au/Pages/australian-disasters.aspx

 

https://www.unisdr.org/archive/52874

 

  • Australia
  • Mia Valiotis

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UNDP 

United States of America

Disaster Risk Reduction

 

In the past decade, over 1.5 billion people have been struck by natural disaster. The cost of these alone has been $1.3 trillion. These range from floods, tsunamis, tornadoes, earthquakes, and even fires. The impact of these disasters is not a matter to be taken lightly. These disasters often come unannounced, leaving families with destroyed homes and lives. When people endure these natural disasters, it is easy for them to fall into a hopeless life unless we aid them adequately. The aid is more than just throwing money at these people. It involves directing this money appropriately, boosting spirits, offering solutions for preventing further risks, and most importantly, the key to disaster relief is kindness. The UNDP provides goals through the Sustainable Development Program, working hard to ensure that countries have a way to come back. A combination of PNDAs, a Build Back Better approach, and methods for preparing are provided by the UNDP as strategies toward aiding countries. Through climate change, weak governance, and an increasing population, it is more imperative than ever that we create versatile solutions and offer better risk preparedness. The delegate of the United States believes that along with USAID, disaster risk reduction can be addressed in three main points: prioritizing and strengthening early warning and preparedness, integrating this with disaster response and early recovery, and refortifying communities. Our goal is to not only strengthen countries ability to respond, but increase their resilience and ability to handle the impacts.

The United States had the most economic damage from natural disasters globally in 2018. Racking up over $16.5 billion, the three biggest disasters were Camp Fire in California, Hurricane Michael, and Hurricane Florence. Camp Fire is the world’s most costly natural disaster and thousands were injured or killed. The United States is no stranger to disaster, and we can empathize with the countries struggling to recover themselves. We work tirelessly as a nation to bring necessary aid to those who have lost everything. As a country, we have many local and national organizations that aid our communities. USAID themselves works even globally, training over 70,000 people in emergency management and disaster response and working in over 130 countries. Recently, the USA offered a variety of aid to Haiti after the earthquake. We sent hospital ships to receive injured patients and provide medical services, hospital beds, and operating rooms. We sent over 13,000 military personnel for the safety and security of the nation. We also provided $68 million towards food and necessities. The United States values the progress of the global community, and we are more than willing and capable to provide aid. We also brought the Incident Command System to more than 15 countries, 2 regional organizations, and one UN Agency. The United States works with FEMA, American Red Cross, and Direct Relief to help restore, redevelop, and refortify the fabric of the communities. 

The United States believes that the best way to tackle disaster risk reduction is to be ready, to respond, and to refortify. We believe that disaster relief needs to reach the people that it is intended to and enlisting the aid of technologies such as Blockchain can ensure this happens. Along with this, new technologies like drones, robots, and self driving vehicles can help reach disaster zones quicker or when it is too dangerous for humans. We also strongly believe in the importance of developing ways to be proactive before disaster strikes. If we can work to strengthen our ability to prepare globally, we can be aware and warned. The actual disaster response can be done through various organizations, such as Direct Relief and the International Rescue Committee. The best way to provide aid is through money, food, shelter, and an opportunity to rebuild a future. Most importantly, the United States strongly believes that refortification is an integral part of the process. As a global community, if we can work together building off of each other’s experiences and successes, then we can soon provide better and faster disaster risk reduction and relief methods, moving us one step towards a safer future for humanity. 

Works Cited

https://www.undp.org/content/undp/en/home/2030-agenda-for-sustainable-development/planet/disaster-risk-reduction-and-recovery/disaster-risk-reduction.html

https://www.history.com/news/deadliest-natural-disasters-us-storm-flood-hurricane-fire

 

 

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/2019/01/08/natural-disasters-camp-fire-worlds-costliest-catastrophe-2018/2504865002/

https://obamawhitehouse.archives.gov/the-press-office/united-states-government-haiti-earthquake-disaster-response-update-12110

  • United States of America
  • Sharanya Swaminathan

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Name: Medha Tripathi

Country: Sri Lanka

United Nations Development Programme

Disaster Risk Reduction

Although the type may vary as a result of geography, all countries face forms of disasters. Whether it is an earthquake, a flood, a drought, a cyclone (etc.) or any man-made disaster, the aftereffects of such an event can be detrimental to the well-being of a country. Emphasis on lessening the direct damage of the disaster itself and being prepared to deal with the consequences in a methodical manner will allow the effects of such catastrophic disasters to be less harmful. 

            Many actions have been taken by the international community to minimize the outcomes of large disasters. The revised “UN Plan of Action on Disaster Risk Reduction for Resilience: Towards a Risk” and “Integrated Approach to Sustainable Development” are long term frameworks that specifically address disasters resulting from climate change and how climate change induced disasters should be mitigated. The UN Plan of Action on Disaster Risk Reduction for Resilience suggested a base for the agencies to assess the incorporation of disaster risk reduction into their corresponding programs and activities. UNESCO currently has pre planned strategies to deal with an earthquake, a volcanic eruption, a landslide, a flood, a tsunami, a cyclone, and a wildfire. 

            Sri Lanka has a Ministry of Disaster Management that leads the preparation and the recovery process of disasters that occur in the nation. After the South-West monsoon that occurred on May 24th 2017 in Sri Lanka, heavy rains flooded the country and ruined soil that many farmers were dependent on for sustenance. As an island country, Sri Lanka is surrounded by the Indian Ocean and is thus prone to water natural disasters such as floods, tsunamis and cyclones. 

            Sri Lanka is a lower to middle income country that would like to see resolutions formulated that target funding to support poorer countries that are more likely to be subject to natural disasters. The Sri Lankan government has seen success in its efforts to formulate sectors within its government that facilitate orders regarding disaster management, but because Sri Lanka recently emerged out of a civil war in 2009, it may still require international help if a large scale natural disaster were to occur. Education of natural disasters to countries worldwide is also an idea that Sri Lanka supports. With educated people, the causes of climate change will become reduced and less natural disasters will occur. In fact, Sri Lanka has already began to avidly educate students about the effects climate change has on the disasters that affect them. 

Works Cited

 

“Good Practices in Disaster Risk Reduction.” UNESCO, 9 Jan. 2019, en.unesco.org/drr-sites/good-practices.

Ministry of Disaster Management, www.disastermin.gov.lk/web.

“UN Organizations.” UNDRR News, www.unisdr.org/partners/united-nations.

“United Nations Plan of Action on Disaster Risk Reduction for Resilience.” United Nations Plan of Action on Disaster Risk Reduction for Resilience | PreventionWeb.net, www.preventionweb.net/publications/view/49076.

 

  • Sri Lanka
  • Medha Tripathi

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United Nations Development Program

Disaster Risk Reduction

Syria

Athens High School

Delegate: Areeb Islam

 

            According to the UNISDR, people in low and middle income nations are 7 times more likely to die from natural disasters than people living in developed nations. In the past 20 years, 4.5 billion people have been affected by natural disasters. The global economic impact of these disasters has equated to a net total of around 2.9 trillion dollars in losses. Extreme weather events account for almost 77% of economic losses. Haiti, in accordance to being one of the poorest countries in the world, recorded one of the highest losses in 2017, reporting a 17.5 percent loss in GDP.

            Syria, like other countries, may be prone to major flooding’s and earthquakes. According to a probabilistic analysis of potential risks, if an earthquake or flood were to occur, losses would total 263 million dollars. Most economic losses in Syria in the past 20 years have been a result of, heat waves, and rain. 71.3% of natural disaster economic losses have been because of heat waves and rain. As Syria is already a war ravaged nation, and the government has lost 200 billion dollars in money, any form of natural disaster would only add to the already heavy conflict facing Syria. As many homes and buildings have been destroyed, natural disasters would stunt our hopes of rebuilding Syria.

            Syria believes that potential solutions to the issues of natural disasters will include potential programs in teaching citizens about how to prepare in the case of a natural disaster. Implementing warning systems and safe zones, with medical stations to treat the wounded, will also help to save a lot of lives of the citizens. Improvements in the infrastructure of homes and hospitals will be very beneficial, as due to the repeated bombings and terrorist attacks imposed by ISIS have caused many citizens to be injured. Syria hopes that a collective effort is made to prevent casualties related to natural disasters in the future.

  • Syria
  • Areeb Islam

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United Nations Development Program

Disaster Risk Reduction

Indonesia

City High School

 

Disaster risk reduction is a subject that affects every country. Every country has their own specific type of disaster that tends to affect their country more than any other.  For Indonesia, we often have volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, floods, landslides, forest fires, and tsunamis. El Nino and La Nina currents have extreme impacts on the environment making the land extremely wet or dry. Many people get their income from their crops but because of floods or droughts lost their crop and sink further into poverty.  2018 was our deadliest year in over a decade. We lost about 4.231 people this last year during natural disasters. Since January 23 there have been 2,426 reported natural disasters. 

Indonesia doesn’t have many systems for the detection of natural disasters.  Their goal is to double their budget for disaster response to 15 trillion rupiah= to 1.06 billion U.S. dollars. Five trillion rupiah would be for rehabilitation and reconstruction. The remaining 10 trillion would be for disaster response. Last year, the finance ministry said it planned to launch a new strategy in 2019 to fund disaster recovery which could include selling “catastrophe bonds.”  

The central government would have state assets against disasters and have a disaster risk financing tools for the affected regions.  The government of Indonesia spends $300-500 million if post-disaster reconstruction annually. The costs can reach from .3% of our national GDP to nearly 45% of our GDP.  The president has asked for disaster preparedness to be included in the national school curriculum and for the country-wide tsunami early warning system to be renewed. The development plan for 2015-19  outlined the countryś disaster management policy. The policy aims to reduce risk, support communities affected by the disaster, and increase the resilience of national and local governments. 

 

Works cited 

Investments, I. (2018, September 3). Natural Disasters in Indonesia. Retrieved from https://www.indonesia-investments.com/business/risks/natural-disasters/item243.

Hermesauto. (2018, December 28). 2018 is Indonesia’s deadliest year in a decade. Retrieved from https://www.straitstimes.com/asia/se-asia/2018-is-indonesias-deadliest-year-in-decade.

Renaldi, E., & Shelton, T. (2018, December 27). The five most deadly natural disasters in Indonesia this year. Retrieved from https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-12-28/the-five-most-deadly-natural-disasters-in-indonesia-this-year/10668480.

Indonesia to double 2019 disaster relief budget after last years tragedies. (2019, January 8). Retrieved from https://www.cnbc.com/2019/01/08/indonesia-to-double-disaster-relief-budget-in-2019.html

Indonesia. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.gfdrr.org/en/indonesia

Djalante, R. (2017, March 28). 12 years after the tsunami: the progress of disaster risk reduction in Indonesia. Retrieved from https://ehs.unu.edu/blog/articles/disaster-risk-reduction-in-indonesia.html

Lessons from disaster risk reduction in Indonesia. (2019, February 14). Retrieved from https://www.sei.org/perspectives/disaster-risk-reduction-indonesia/

 

  • Indonesia
  • Molly Boehringer

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United Nations Development Programme

Disaster Risk Reduction

Azerbajian 

Amaya Holman 

Forest Hills Eastern

 

Wildfires, tsunamis, earthquakes, tornadoes and blizzards are natural disasters that affect millions of people every year worldwide. Natural disasters have negative impacts on the economies, the lives of people and the cites these tragedies happen too. For example natural disasters cause huge mass destruction of homes and cities, leaving many buildings in rubble and ash. Diseases like Vector Borne, Diarrhea, Hepatitis A and E, caused by clean water being communicated after flooding. 

 

Azerbaijan experiences natural disasters like earthquakes,landslides and seasonal floods. UNICEF together with the Ministry of Emergency Situations of Azerbaijan and Oxfam came together in efforts to improve disaster preparedness by setting up programs implemented in 8 communities of Salyan and Neftchala districts to develop awareness and to insure the safety of the people surrounding the area affected by the natural disasters. Additionally, Azerbaijan has installed 30 seismic stations in order to detect any earthquakes. These stations provide early warnings for the effects of earthquakes such as mudslides. Because Azerbaijan is located in the Caucasus, flooding is common when the snow in the mountains melt. Unfortunately, there has been an increase in flooding due to warmer climates.

 

Azerbaijan believes lowering disasters risk for the safety of people is important. Each year natural disasters take 90,000 lives and injuring over 160 million people worldwide. Azerbaijan is ready to work with fellow delegates to help reductice the negative effects of natural disasters, and the first step is to focus on climate change. Climate change will cause desertification, flooding, and mudslides in many nations, including Azerbaijan. To reduce natural disasters, we must reduce the factors that cause climate change.

  • Azerbaijan
  • Amaya Holman

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SUBMITTED TO: United Nations Development Programme

FROM: Russian Federation

Subject: Disaster Risk Reduction

Royal Oak High School

Nina Hall

 

 

According to the United Nations, over the past twenty years disasters from natural hazards have affected 4.5 billion people. The disasters have claimed 1.3 million lives and caused $2 trillion in economic losses. For the first time, disaster losses globally have topped $100 billion for three consecutive years from 2010-2012, far outstripping humanitarian aid. In many of these disasters, critics have repeatedly brought up the issue of the failure to provide adequate response. These critics recommended calling on states and international communities to shift from reactive to proactive approaches to disaster management. By doing so this would allow for a more prepared approach to many disasters that occur globally.

A main struggle for many nations after disasters is maintaining a stable socioeconomic condition. Disasters can cause the area of the economy to be vulnerable which can cause the economy to face serious issues and even the possibility that it may deteriorate. The United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, UNISDR, stated two visions for disaster risk reduction around the world. They are 1 ”To enable all communities to become resilient to the effects of natural, technological and environmental hazards, reducing the compound risks they pose to social and economic vulnerabilities within modern societies.” and 2 “To proceed from protection against hazards to the management of risk through the integration of risk prevention into sustainable development.” By doing so it can bring down the total impact of some disasters and aid in the aftermath/restoration process both physically and technically.

Disaster Risk Reduction is a main part of what the UN takes care of in the General Assembly. They have worked continuously with the UNDRR ever since they founded the group in 1989. A key breakthrough for the UNDRR was recognizing the 1990’s as the “international decade for natural disaster reduction.” The work of the United Nations and the UNDRR has helped bring awareness from many countries in order for them to start taking action. In the world conference many plans were discussed and frameworks for future events and actions that would be taken were made. With these plans and the framework for many upcoming events it has helped to increase the amount of proactive plans put in place. By doing so it can help with the protection of infrastructure but most importantly the lives of citizens.

Russia is willing to comply with any possible solutions or resolutions brought about in committee. Furthermore, as a nation we are willing to draft plans and are willing to negotiate into any aid or relief that would go to efforts to assemble task forces, increasing action plans and endorsing any organizations that are specialized in Disaster Risk Reduction. Our biggest concern with natural disasters is the safety of civilians and preventing unstable infrastructures after hazards affect an area causing damage which inevitably causes many financial issues.

 

Sources

https://www.unisdr.org/

https://ciaonet.org/record/48790?search=1

https://www.unisdr.org/2005/wcdr/wcdr-index.htm

https://www.oxfamamerica.org/press/vulnerability-to-disaster-highlighted-in-new-report/

 

  • Russian Federation
  • Nina Hall

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United Nations Development Programme

Disaster Risk Reduction

Saginaw Arts and Sciences Academy

 

An average of 60,000 people died per year in the past decade due to natural disasters according to Our World In Data. In 2018, there were 315 natural disaster events recorded with 11,804 deaths and over 68 million people in total affected. There are many types of natural disasters, therefore there will have to be many different solutions for each type of disaster. All countries are susceptible to the effects of natural disasters, regardless of the geographical location.

 

The UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR) coordinates frameworks for states to follow, such as the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction. This agreement recognizes that the state is primarily responsible the reduce disaster risk but that the responsibility should also be shared with other branches, such as local government. UNDRR also educates the younger generation by integrating natural disaster safety into the education system. They work to involve them in the decision-making process for disaster risk reduction. In 2001, the General Assembly decided to maintain the observance of the International Day for Natural Disaster Reduction on the second Wednesday of October to promote a global culture of natural disaster reduction, including disaster prevention, mitigation, and preparedness.

 

Equatorial Guinea is especially susceptible to floods and droughts. It is a member and partner of the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS), along with countries such as Angola, Chad, and Cameroon. The EECAS is working to working to increase the efforts to attain better control of the impact of hazards amid rising pressure from climate change. There is a high level of public investment in disaster risk reduction in Equatorial Guinea, as reviewed by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)-Development Assistance Committee (DAC). Equatorial Guinea helped draft National Adaptation Action Plan (PANA) with the help of UNDP, following the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (CMUCCC). Equatorial Guinea supports efforts to decrease disaster risks.

 

The delegation of Equatorial Guinea believes that possible solutions to Disaster Risk Reduction are education, better systems of warning, and locations where people can go and seek shelter. Educating the public would build local resilience to disasters, such as climate change or earthquakes. Better systems of warning for natural disasters coming would prove to be very beneficial, to allow people time to get to safe places. Apps such as the Disaster Alert™ App would allow people to receive alerts directly to their phones, which many people around the world use daily now. Education on public safe places for natural disasters could save many lives, and the UN should work towards saving as many people as possible in as little time as possible, as people are dying now and the UN cannot wait. Equatorial Guinea looks forward to working with other countries to decrease natural disasters risks. 

  • Equatorial Guinea
  • Audrey Wong

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United Nations Development Programme

Disaster Risk Reduction

People’s Republic of China

Vipul Adusumilli

Forest Hills Eastern

 

In the early-to-mid 20th century, the annual death toll from disasters was high, usually reaching over one million per year. In recent decades there has been a substantial decline in deaths. In most years fewer than 20,000 people die and recently it has often been less than 10,000 deaths. In peak years with high-impact events, the death toll has not exceeded 500,000 since the mid-1960s. Natural disasters strike at the lives of people across the world but hit the underdeveloped countries and the poorest societies the hardest. Those living in the Asia-Pacific region are significantly more likely to experience natural disasters than those in any other part of the world. China is one of the most exposed to natural disasters, with a long history of devastating events and remains at high risk. China has undertaken major disaster risk reduction reforms.

 

We have established a record of international cooperation in disease risk reduction and management. For example, we have collaborated with the International Strategy Committee for Disaster Reduction in establishing the International Centre for Drought Risk Reduction (ICDRR) in Beijing in 2007. The ICDRR was given the responsibility of promoting international and interregional cooperation and collaboration in drought risk reduction by using satellite technology and developing additional mechanisms to monitor and assess drought risks across Asia. The centre also has concentrated on building databases and a knowledge pool, developing applied technology and enhancing capacity building and public awareness on drought risks. China has been an active nation fostering aid in both Northeast and Southeast Asia as well as Central Asia. In Northeast Asia, there has been a trilateral dialogue process with South Korea and Japan. The Trilateral Heads of Government Agency Meeting on Disaster Management has been taking place since 2009. In Southeast Asia, around October 2014, China and ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Disaster Management Cooperation. Under the agreement, China is providing $8.1 million for ASEAN capacity building to improve its response to regional disasters. In Central Asia, the focus has been on the disaster management, cooperation agreements, and processes of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, which includes an agreement to establish a dedicated Centre to facilitate this. Additionally, Risk Perception Analysis is a core element. As the European Forum on Disaster Risk Reduction has noted: “Risk perception analysis is the first step in understanding how local cultures identify and manage risk. Risk perception drives how people will behave and manage a particular risk. The inclusion of social sciences and their analytical tools in the national platforms is crucial to have a complete vision of the understanding of risk.”

 

China believes regions around the world can achieve something similar to Asia. China hopes nations in specific regions work together and invest in their region. China encourages these nations to improve their education and understanding of disasters by creating and sharing a database with nations in their region to predict these disasters. Furthermore, we reiterate the importance of investing in a region’s internal infrastructure to help combat against disasters. China further encourages nations to create clinics to help people cope with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder after a natural disaster.

 

 

  • People's Republic of China
  • Vipul Adusumilli

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Madagascar on Disaster Risk Prevention

Committee: UNDP

Topic: Disaster Risk Prevention

Country: Madagascar

Delegate: Jason Xhelilaj from Royal Oak High School

 

Madagascar is vulnerable to a range of climate related hazards, including cyclones, droughts, and floods. Madagascar experiences $100 million in economic losses each year from these disasters. The tropical cyclones, alone, combined with wind, rain, and storm surge cause 86% of these losses. An increasingly variable and changing climate poses significant risks to the future of Madagascar. These disasters are rapidly becoming more frequent and intense, affecting food security, drinking water supply and irrigation, public health systems, environmental management, and lifestyle in extremely negative ways.

As it stands in the modern world, the country of Madagascar has shifted its focus on dealing with the problem from post-disaster relief operations to disaster risk management (DRM) and climate resilience strategies. In 2003, Madagascar’s government adopted the national strategy on DRM. The National Bureau of Disaster Risk Management serves as the authority for the management, coordination, and monitoring of all DRM and UNDR. The National Plan on the primary issues, cyclones and flooding, articulates process to be followed during these events.

Madagascar proposes to update the National DRM Strategy to fit today’s modern requirements after the worsening of global disasters since the original creation of the strategy and mainstreaming disaster resilience in economic development for further integration and to increase its popularity.

In the end, the main goal is to integrate DRM and climate resilience strategy into planning and general strategy development successfully and efficiently.

  • Madagascar
  • Jason Xhelilaj

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          As one of the United Nationals Developmental Programme’s core donors, Italy is committed to developing a proper resolution that fosters cooperation in a topic that affects the entire globe. Italy has always been a victim of natural disasters like earthquakes, floods, and more. For that reason, we recognize the significance of creating a universal system for disaster risk management. We have shown such efforts by establishing the African center for sustainability in Rome that tackles topics like climate change, clean water, and food security. Yet natural disasters do not pertain to a single country, they affect our world which is why we need an international effort for change. 

         In the past, the United Nations had written and passed a few plans that reference disaster risk management. The Paris Agreement sought to maintain the global temperature to reduce the risk for Climate Change. The Sendai Framework shifted the focus from Disaster risk relief to disaster risk management. By identifying the roots and causes of natural disasters, it becomes easier to develop a plan that prevents natural disasters from happening rather than diminishing the impacts of natural disasters after they happen. 

There are many solutions that could be proposed in any new resolution. For example, researching new technology and sustainability efforts in order to de-escalate environmental damages from high carbon dioxide emissions, or toxification of water, and more and more. More than just research, the whole committee should form a resolution that allows communication between countries in time of environmental disaster to be easier and faster. There should be a universal emergency relief plan or even fund that focuses on aiding countries dealing with damages specifically from natural disasters. 

  • Italy
  • Rajaa Alhamd

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United Nations Development Programme

Disaster Risk Reduction

Dominion of Canada

Camille Gerville-Réache, Forest Hills Northern High School

 

Natural disasters are inevitably costly and damaging. From earthquakes to hurricanes, no country is without impact. Every year, billions are spent globally on disaster relief, and yet, since 1980, over two million lives have been lost. Fully aware of the damages natural disasters have and will cost, the Hyogo, then the Sendai Framework have been created and internationally followed. Under the influence of both mitigation strategies, many nations are investing millions in proactive response measures which would save billions in costs of recovery and response measures, as well as minimalize the mortality rate. 

Canada fully recognizes its primary role in protecting citizens from natural disaster threats. After the Canadian supported Hyogo Framework timeline ceased, Canada further endorsed its successor, the Sendai Framework. In early 2008, Canada’s Natural Disaster Mitigation Strategy was launched, designed to take proactive measures before a disaster hits. The program focuses on educating citizens, promoting research programs, and enhancing structural mitigation development. These methods were formed with the target of heightening public awareness and increasing disaster response capacity. 

With goals of significantly reducing casualties and economic losses by 2030, Canada strongly encourages all nations to implement the Sendai frameworks of policies and strategies. The Sendai Framework is designed to substantially reduce the global damage of infrastructure, gross domestic product, and fatalities caused by natural disasters. Climate change underhand, the implementation of these strategies grow more urgent.

 

Holding the safety of all peoples in mind, the delegation of Canada fully encourages other nations to organize natural disaster programs following the Hyogo and Sendai frameworks, to most effectively prepare for and respond to sudden natural events. Moreover, Canada further recommends nations proactively build natural disaster withstanding structures, thus reducing funds necessary for relief. Canada looks forward to collaborating with nations for reducing disaster risk.

 

  • Dominion of Canada
  • Camille Gerville-Réache

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Topic of Disaster Risk Reduction

Country:  Federal Republic of Germany

Committee: UNITED NATIONS DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME (UNDP)

Delegate: Richard 

 

Disaster Risk Reduction is an issue that the UNITED NATIONS DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME (UNDP) has addressed historically, as it understands the importance of saving lives. Every country in the world is at risk of facing disaster, and therefore it is in the interest of all countries to work together to develop ways to improve readiness and response to disasters. The UNDP, in the past, has worked with countries to strengthen national and subnational policy, legal, and institutional systems. The goals are to foster greater coherence of disaster risk reduction and climate adaptation efforts. Together, these efforts strengthen the resilience of countries along with urban and rural communities. The UNDP has published the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 (Sendai Framework), one of the first major agreements of the post-2015 development agenda, with seven targets and four priorities for action. The goal of the Sendai Framework is to create clear outlines and goals to reduce the risk of disasters and create substantial reduction of disaster destruction to economic, physical, social, cultural and environmental assets over the next 15 years.

 

The Federal Republic of Germany has a disaster relief program known as The Bundesanstalt Technisches Hilfswerk (THW, Federal Agency for Technical Relief). It is a civil protection organization controlled by the German federal government. 99% of its 79,514 members (2016) are volunteers working on the program internationally. The group focuses on a range of issues from technical and logistical support for firefighters and police to technical and humanitarian relief in foreign countries. The organization has been active in many disaster relief operations such as the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami and the 2005 Hurricane Katrina.

 

In order to properly address the issue of disaster risk reduction, the delegation of Germany believes this committee first needs to decrease the direct harm of the disasters, and secondly, effectively deal with the effects of said disaster after it occurs. The first focus is investing in the proper training to prepare for both the disaster and the fallout. Local communities are crucial to disaster management. Education and training also needs to be implemented at the local level. Training, in addition to the collection of data, is also necessary to expand the current system of data sharing and analysis. Germany proposes a stronger network between countries to share such information. Making the link between short-term disaster risk reduction and long-term resilience may allow leaders to make major investments to protect their families and cities. Miami-Dade County, Florida , is a great example: the Department of Water & Sewer plans to spend a total of $13 billion on comprehensive system upgrades over the next two decades as part of its Capital Improvement Plan. All over the world, coastal cities are facing existential decisions about how to manage severe storms. Miami-Dade’s focus on the insurance benefits of resilience projects to create a virtuous cycle of further improvements create sustainability. Without such plans, the reliance on government disaster relief funds will inevitably grow. Moreover, it is important to invest and develop better infrastructure that not only may be able to withstand natural disasters, but also be able to be used to provide aid with great efficiency. 

Works Cited 

“Disaster Risk Reduction.” UNDP, www.undp.org/content/undp/en/home/2030-agenda-for-sustainable-development/planet/disaster-risk-reduction-and-recovery/disaster-risk-reduction.html.

Domres, B, et al. “The German Approach to Emergency/Disaster Management.” Medicinski Arhiv, U.S. National Library of Medicine, 2000, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11117024.

Milner, Justin, et al. “Three Lessons That Can Help Improve Disaster Relief Efforts.” Urban Institute, 17 Jan. 2018, www.urban.org/urban-wire/three-lessons-can-help-improve-disaster-relief-efforts.

“Overview of the National Disaster Management System.” European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations – European Commission, 14 Oct. 2019, ec.europa.eu/echo/what/civil-protection/disaster-management/germany_en.

“Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030.” UNDRR News, www.unisdr.org/we/inform/publications/43291.

 

Vajjhala, Shalini. “Making the Leap from Disaster Relief to Resilience.” Brookings, Brookings, 4 Oct. 2017, www.brookings.edu/blog/the-avenue/2017/10/04/making-the-leap-from-disaster-relief-to-resilience/.

 

  • Germany
  • Richard Li

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Topic: Disaster Risk Reduction

Nation: The State of Qatar 

Committee: UNITED NATIONS DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME (UNDP)

Throughout the world, disasters have affected 1.5 billion people in the past decade alone. The UNITED NATIONS DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME (UNDP) recognizes the severity of this issue and has worked with 125 countries to increase resilience against these disasters. UNDP’s goals include strengthening policy, legal and institutional systems both nationally and subnationally, increasing accessibility to risk information and early warning systems, and improving disaster risk reduction and climate adaptation efforts as a whole. The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 (Sendai Framework) was established with the goal of decreasing disaster risk and losses of lives in the economic, physical, social, cultural, and environmental assets in countries.

In 1998, The State of Qatar established the Permanent Emergency Committee (PEC), which is responsible for managing crisis and disaster. It is composed of ministries and both public and private organizations. The PEC has established a National Plan for Emergency for disasters and set up a regional observatory in terms of monitoring earthquakes and other disasters. Qatar has also adopted the Sendai Framework in order to increase the recovery capacity and readiness for any disaster. The delegation of Qatar believes in the importance of information on and understanding of disaster risk. This information can be used to effectively increase preparedness and strengthen response to disasters. Investing in early warning systems is essential. The delegation of Qatar also believes in a set of detailed contingency plans put in place for disasters expected to occur in the State. Periodic drills for these plans should be conducted for maximum efficiency and readiness of Qatar. Qatar is implementing a series of plans to be prepared as the host nation for the 2022 Football World Cup. 

The delegation of Qatar also believes in education on disasters. If the people of Qatar have a full understanding of how to best protect themselves, property, and livelihoods, then vulnerability to disasters decreases and less damage occurs. Effectiveness of response to disasters should increase as well. Impacts of a disaster can be substantially reduced if authorities are well prepared to respond to these disasters. All authorities, but especially authorities in areas of high disaster risk, should have both the knowledge and resources to respond as effectively as possible. Disaster management should be increased with proper training of authorities. Sufficient resources must be provided to these authorities in order to ensure they can respond to disasters with the highest effectiveness possible. In addition, the delegation of Qatar believes in constructing resilient infrastructure that can withstand disasters. Qatar proposes a global baseline for all future, major structures built. These baselines would ensure maximum resilience to disasters and reduce the impact of these disasters. Qatar also proposes an insurance system for disasters. Carribbean governments currently use the Carribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility (CCRIF), which provides Carribean governments with financial coverage in the event of a natural disaster. A system like this is beneficial because it makes countries less dependent on international aid and it helps to maintain stability in disaster stricken countries so that recovery efforts can be put in place as fast as possible

 

Works Cited

“Disaster Risk Reduction and Recovery.” UNDP, https://www.undp.org/content/undp/en/home/2030-agenda-for-sustainable-development/planet/disaster-risk-reduction-and-recovery.html.

“Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction.” UNDRR News, https://www.unisdr.org/we/coordinate/sendai-framework.

“Towards Developing a National Disaster Risk Reduction and Recovery Plan – Qatar.” Towards Developing a National Disaster Risk Reduction and Recovery Plan – Qatar | PreventionWeb.net, https://www.preventionweb.net/events/view/48414?id=48414.

“United Nations Plan of Action on Disaster Risk Reduction for Resilience.” United Nations Plan of Action on Disaster Risk Reduction for Resilience | PreventionWeb.net, https://www.preventionweb.net/publications/view/49076.

UNUniversity. “Solutions for Those at Risk in Climate Disasters.” Our World, https://ourworld.unu.edu/en/solutions-for-those-at-risk-of-climate-disaster.

 

  • Qatar
  • Audrey DeGuia

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Natalie Swartz

Democratic People’s Republic of Korea

Kalamazoo Central High School

 

UNDP Topic 1: Disaster Risk Reduction

In the years following the separation of the Korean Peninsula, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea built up a superior infrastructure and natural disaster research department to those of its western counterparts. In the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, the effects of natural disasters, like heavy storms, heatwaves, and earthquakes, are experienced, however the infrastructure of the nation allows for these affects to be controlled and less devastating to the DPRK. The DPRK recognizes that a main contributor to the superiority of the nation is the relative economic success of this great nation, and has watched the infrastructure of its capitalist counterparts crumble and be unsuccessful in preventing and reacting to the devastating effects of natural disasters, as the economy of those nations do not create enough revenue to properly support government initiatives for the purpose of developing programs to create these resilient structures and research teams. 

 

The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea recommends for the reform of technology, both infrastructural and in general scientific advancements, such as earthquake detection and heatwave treatment, through the process of slowly transferring the government and economic system to a more controlled type, which would, in turn, allow for the allocation of revenue made from taxes and general income to support initiatives such as the development of infrastructure and/or teams to prevent and mitigate the effects of these disasters. Another area of disaster risk reduction needing to be covered by this is shelter and rebuilding efforts, in case the infrastructure is broken. In the DPRK, all citizens are fully provided for and the DPRK suggests that other nations follow in suit because this way of living secures life and prosperity for the nation.

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  • Natalie Swartz

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United Nations Development Programme

Disaster Risk Reduction 

Portugal 

Luis F. Vazquez 

 

It is largely impossible to entirely stop any natural disaster, and many times it is impossible to even predict when a natural disaster might even happen. Historically the natural disasters causing the most deaths to take place within the Asain continent. The world’s deadliest disaster was in July of 1931 consisting of flooding killing between 1 to 4 million people and china takes up 5 of the 10 deadliest disasters. Floodings are the most dangerous types of natural disasters because of the number of people that will have to relocate due to the damages done by flooding. Today Flooding threatens to displace nearly 18 million people, 80 percent of those people living in urban and peri-urban areas. In June of 2007, the UN General Assembly held its first session of the global platform on disaster reduction recognizing the vast danger to all member states that a natural disaster can have. 

 

The Portuguese republic’s capital city, Lisbon, is in great danger of flooding caused by global warming, and not only losing much of the territory held in Lisbon but through the whole Portuguese coastline. In light of global warming’s looming effect on all coastlines because of rising ocean levels Portugal has had to consider the implications it might mean for the residents and their housing status. In Portugal, flooding forced 13,372 people to be displaced and 40,283 people to become homeless. The Lisbon earthquake of 1755 ravaged Lisbon land with floods and those areas which were not flooded were lit on fire because of candles used in churches. Portugal has put in place lots of infrastructure in place to stop the catastrophe that river flash floods can cause. Even though there are many barriers in the case of natural disasters like the employment of dams, there are disasters where there is simply not enough time to be fully prepared to stop the effects of natural disasters.

 

Portugal proposes for all member states who are not commonly affected by catastrophic events to provide resources whether those be monetary or structural in the form of employing their own companies to build support in the efforts of stopping large natural disaster damage. Those member states that are affected by natural disasters and are helped by other member states Shall thank helping Member states by supplying scarce resources relative to their own resources.

  • Portugal
  • Luis F. Vazquez

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Country: Denmark

Committee: United Nations Development Programme

Topic: Disaster Risk Reduction

Name: Ethan Sinke

High School: Williamston High School

Natural disasters have a tremendous effect on nations, disrupting development and the lives of people. With the current climate crisis, countries must be prepared for whatever natural disaster that could happen. For example, in 2018 97.9 billion dollars worth of damage occurred due to natural disasters. The body must come up with preventative methods and also ensure that each nation has proper technology to be able to predict whenever these natural disasters could occur. The body should also work towards developing in an environmentally sustainable way that does not lead to erosion, drought, and other types of natural disasters.

Denmark has taken action against natural disasters and has implemented disaster risk reduction methods. One example is that Denmark has taken action to develop sustainably and prepare for building resilience when creating it’s infrastructure. Denmark has also used climate services such as The WMO Global Framework for Climate Services to give out early warnings to affected groups of people in terms of natural disasters. Denmark has also implemented warning and response strategies, and has increased knowledge about disaster risk reduction and natural disasters within educational systems through the Hyogo Framework for Action. 

 

Denmark believes that countries should do anything in the best of their abilities to help countries who face environmental damage, especially if they produce many emissions. Denmark believes that education should take place in countries who suffer from environmental damage regarding environmental impacts and about what everyday citizens can do to help. Denmark also hopes that the body creates an emergency action plan of some sort so countries can be prepared when they suffer from environmental damage. Denmark calls for ensuring that developed nations invest in research on natural disasters and work towards sustainable building development. Denmark also calls on nations to also implement sustainable agriculture methods like watershed management and no till agriculture to restore land. Denmark also wants every nation to be able to ensure seasonal weather forecasts are conducted for crop planning and in preparation for natural disasters.

  • Denmark
  • Ethan Sinke

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Country: Morocco
Committee: UNDP
Topic: Disaster Risk Reduction
Delegate: Marie Schafer

School: Williamston High School

Natural disasters cause massive harm to both the environment, as well as those living where the disaster actually strikes. These extremely dangerous occurrences can also be very costly whether in terms of money, or the lives that may be lost. The increasing technology throughout the years has allowed countries to track when these disasters may strike, so if we can continue this trend in the future, we may have even more than enough time to evacuate the areas that will soon be hit. As climate change begins to take a toll on our environment, and increase the frequency of these disasters, preparations must be made to ensure that the economies will not be destroyed in the wake of damage. The United Nations cannot continue to simply supply a country with the funds that they need after a disaster. Instead, there needs to be a way to prepare people for these strikes, and make sure that an economy will not crash as a result of it.

 

 Morocco is highly prone to natural hazards such as droughts, earthquakes, extreme heat, floods, tsunamis, and wildfires, so the costs of natural disasters are no stranger. In Morocco, impacts from natural hazards cost on average about $790 million every year, with floods driving the largest share of losses. In response to this unavoidable topic, Morocco has co-chaired – along with the EU- an organization called the Group of Friends. On October 16th, 2019, they had a meeting, along with 33 other UN member states, with a topic of Disaster Displacement. The goal of this organization is to better protect those displaced by disasters and climate change. In addition to this, Morocco’s minister of energy, mining, water, and environment, as well as the country’s representative of the Secretary-General for disaster risk have stressed the importance of cutting down on human losses, and therefore, they have set up institutions, mechanisms, and capacities to consolidate resilience to catastrophes.

  •  In the future, Morocco plans to continue their Group of Friends, to reinforce the importance of the problem at hand. Moroccan officials have talked of compiling a data basis on catastrophes and a geographic information system on major risks in the country, and these systems could be expanded all across the world. The Moroccan government also plans on Implementing climate change adaptation policies to conserve natural resources and make agriculture more resilient, as well as Improving disaster risk financing and insurance. While Morocco has already added a disaster risk insurance law in 2016 that introduces a market-based disaster insurance, as well as establishing a solidarity fund against catastrophic events that compensates uninsured household items affected by catastrophic events, they don’t want to stop there, but rather continue the progress that has already been made.
  • Morocco
  • Marie Schafer

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Walker Broadbent, Mattawan High School

Seychelles

United Nations Development Programme (UNDP): Disaster Risk Reduction

 

Natural disasters are characterized by their proven ability to unleash abhorrent amounts of destruction. As their name suggests, these disasters stem from nature itself; we as humans have little choice but to accept their existence. Our sole choice is to defend ourselves. How minimally these disasters affect us depends on how well we prepare before they strike. Bolstering infrastructure, building designs, urban planning, and coordination ability—aspects of disaster risk reduction—is expensive. But, upfront costs will never be nearly as expensive as the damage these disasters can cause. Hurricane Maria, as an example, left citizens all over Puerto Rico without power for almost an entire year. This disaster perfectly illustrates the dire necessity of strong risk reduction. Without a solid support infrastructure, Puerto Rico took 11 months to restore power to all the homes across the country. Additionally, many rural areas lack any infrastructure whatsoever, making it significantly harder to support that demographic. In short, there are a lot of precautions that countries need to take to ensure the safety of its people.

Seychelles, as a small island nation, is susceptible to tropical cyclones, coastal floods, storm surge, and landslides. After the destruction caused by Felleng, a cyclone that struck us in 2013, we have initiated projects to analyze our situation. Our primary goals were to identify causes and impacts of floods and landslides, support the identification of damages and recovery needs, provide training on damage assessment, and review structures for disaster preparedness. Our experience with Felleng was a paradigm shift, as we found ourselves in a severe need of money. We had no means of coping with the $8.4 million in damages on our own due to our high percentage of poverty, despite our relatively strong economy. Also, the issue of climate change will affect our main industries of fishing and tourism. Without these, we are left without any means to support our people, so we see this as a major concern as well.

The Seychellois hope to develop a plan to improve disaster risk reduction with the other countries. We see it as necessary that struggling nations are assisted with their infrastructure so that their economy and quality of life improve, which will additionally assist their disaster relief efforts. Many of our people don’t have consistent access to basic needs already, and when disaster strikes their situation will be infinitely worse. To make matters worse, if we don’t attack climate change, Seychelles won’t have any income. We look forward to hearing other opinions on this improving disaster relief and climate change.

 

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  • Walker Broadbent

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Delegate: Rachel Zaidan 

Country: Kenya 

Topic: Disaster Risk Reduction

Natural disasters are often unpredictable, sudden, and dangerous. Therefore, it is important for countries to be prepared for these disasters, and to be prepared to manage the destruction that does take place. The most common tragedies include floods, earthquakes, and extreme temperatures. Every nation suffers from some type of natural disaster, and every nation has different means of dealing with these disasters. Dams, building structure, and decreasing climate change are all possible prevention techniques. However, these solutions require money that many nations can’t spare. When these tragedies do inevitably hit, many countries also lack the resources to respond quickly and effectively. The dangerous nature of these incidents make discussing disaster risk reduction crucial. 

Kenya’s most common disasters are floods and droughts. Being a poor country, Kenya struggles to prevent and handle the damage of these destructions. What’s worse, Kenya’s economy is mostly agricultural, meaning the entire country suffers each time Kenya endures a natural disaster. As a result, Kenya is likely to welcome any solutions that take increased action in disaster risk reduction. Kenya has begun climate change prevention programs and drafted a national policy for disaster management in the hope that the damage of future natural disasters may be decreased. Additionally, Kenya launched a training program in order to help pastoralists know what to do in severe weather events. Still, there is more to be done in Kenya to reduce the risks of disasters. 

A possible solution could be developing financing strategies for countries that lack the money to provide ample risk reduction in their country. This will overcome the main challenge in preventing natural disasters, which is the poor nature of many of the countries facing these severe incidents. One possible financing strategy could be channeling donations for the creation of preventive structures. Kenya is looking forward to working with other nations to increase disaster risk reduction and save lives.   

 

  • Kenya
  • Rachel Zaidan

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Country: Iran

Committee: UNDP

Topic: Disaster Risk Reduction

Delegate: Connor Baney

School: Mattawan High School

Natural disasters offer humans a unique set of obstacles. Considering that for the most part, these disasters are unavoidable, the way in which we as a committee decide to address this topic will set precedent for the delegates that will discuss after we are long gone. Worldwide, many areas of the world face extensive damage at the hands of natural disasters every year, and we as a nation would like to reduce this.

 

In Iran, Major natural disasters include frequent serious earthquakes, floods, droughts, landslides, desertification, deforestation, storms and the like. Earthquakes take a heavy toll. Iran is part of the Alp-Himalaya orogenic belt and is known as part of the youngest and last orogenic regions of the world. Considering Iran is a rather impoverished nation, the way natural disasters affect our constituents often time means we have limited means to recover. Just this year, Iran faced flooding that claimed the lives of 77, injured another 791, and caused over 2.2 billion dollars in damages. Due to this tragedy, Iran feels that this topic is especially relevant.

 

As a nation, we are willing to cooperate with other nations to help provide the means to recover from such disasters and provide infrastructure that allows countries to recuperate from said disasters with more ease. 

 

  • Iran
  • Connor Baney

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Topic: Disaster Risk Reduction

Nation: Japan 

Committee: UNITED NATIONS DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME (UNDP)

 

Natural disasters have caused over 730,000 deaths, 1.9 million injuries, and the displacement of 15 million in just the past ten years, according to the The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). Additionally, these disasters cost nations an estimated $175 billion in 2016, which is not just a threat to human welfare, but also a threat to the economic welfare of many nations. According to the 2017 World Economic Forum’s Global Risk report, extreme weather events are the most prominent global risk in likelihood and potential impact. The United Nations Development Programme has also recognized natural disasters as a significant threat, and therefore has recommended the immediate need for disaster risk reduction, in order to lower the impact of such destructive disasters.  The UNDP has also called for greater national preparedness in order to lower the resulting effect of such disasters when they inevitably do occur. To combat this serious issue, the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction was created, which outlined goals and strategies in which disaster risk reduction could be achieved. Additionally, the Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction (GAR), a biennial report on international disaster risk, helps provide countries with crucial information on disaster risk reduction in order to inform them of risks and thereby possible solutions in which to combat and prevent disasters. But still more needs to be done. According to the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), only 0.4% of money allocated toward international aid is used for disaster preparation and risk reduction.

 

Japan, having had a long and perilous history with severe natural disasters, (most notably typhoons, tsunamis, and earthquakes) has recognized the need for improved disaster risk reduction tactics and also increased preparedness for natural disasters. This has been done through many methods, such as through research initiatives and projects which give crucial data to scientists predicting the occurrence and magnitude of natural disasters; the building and reinforcement of infrastructure to protect against disasters, such as Tokyo’s Water Discharge Tunnel and laws that enforce earthquake-proof standards on houses, schools, and office buildings; recovery operations to help protect citizens during disasters; and the improvement of communication systems, such as the development of smartphone regulations so that just before an earthquake, every smartphone warns its user of the impending crisis.

 

In order to increase disaster risk reduction internationally, the delegation of Japan suggests two main things: first, the implementation of nature-based solutions in order to help reduce the probability of disasters, but also as a cost-effective method to protect populations when a disaster does inevitably strike. For example, the preservation and creation of forests can help stabilize hills and prevent landslides; plant life along coasts, along with natural land formations such as sand dunes help limit the effect of storm surges and wind storms; and coral reefs can reduce the impact of tidal storms. These natural solutions also help lower carbon emissions – one of the main reasons for the exacerbation of natural disasters. The effectiveness of natural-based solutions can be seen through their success in nations which have already implemented them. For example, in the Philippines, when Typhoon Haiyan hit, mangrove forests were attributed to saving the lives of many, and consequently, USD $22 million was allocated for the restoration of mangrove forests. Additionally, after the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami, Japan created the Sanriku Fukko Reconstruction park, rather than expanding coastal walls, saving an estimated JPY 2.5 billion. Secondly, the delegation of Japan suggests the improvement of communication systems, as well as recovery operations. By harnessing already-present radio facilities, present in 75% of developing nations, warnings could be issued prior to a disaster striking, giving citizens time to prepare. Along with this, mandatory drills should be set in place so as to prepare schoolchildren. Volunteers should be educated and taught how to effectively and efficiently act in disaster situations. In these two ways, disaster risk reduction could be achieved internationally, and tens of thousands of lives would be saved.

 

Works Cited

 

Amlang, Sandra, and Marlene Grundstrom. “UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR): UN-Water.” UN, UN Water, https://www.unwater.org/institution/un-office-for-disaster-risk-reduction-unisdr/.

Dayman, Lucy. “8 Ways Japan Prepares for Earthquakes.” Culture Trip, The Culture Trip, 10 Jan. 2018, https://theculturetrip.com/asia/japan/articles/8-ways-japan-prepares-for-earthquakes/.

 

“Disaster Prevention.” MOFA, MOFA, https://www.mofa.go.jp/policy/disaster/21st/2.html.

 

“Disaster Risk Reduction.” Best Climate Solutions, CMCC, https://www.bestclimatesolutions.eu/contest/disaster-risk-reduction/.

 

Fowler, Victoria. “The Positive Impact of Mass Media in Developing Countries.” The Borgen Project, Borgen Project, 11 Aug. 2018, https://borgenproject.org/mass-media-in-developing-countries/.

 

Gilbert, Amber, and Amber GilbertAmber. “Top 10 Countries with Solid Disaster Management System.” Elist10, Elist10, 21 Aug. 2019, https://www.elist10.com/top-10-countries-solid-disaster-management-system/.

 

Komoriya, Chiho. “Dealing with Disaster in Japan.” The Japan Times, The Japan Times, 16 Sept. 2018, https://www.japantimes.co.jp/life/2018/09/16/digital/dealing-disaster-japan/#.XcHAIyVOklQ.

 

“Nature-Based Solutions to Disasters.” IUCN, IUCN, 18 May 2018, https://www.iucn.org/resources/issues-briefs/nature-based-solutions-disasters.

“Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030.” UNDRR News, UNDRR, 2015, https://www.unisdr.org/we/inform/publications/43291.

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  • Christopher Mojares

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United Nations Development Programme

Disaster Risk Reduction

Republic of Peru

Flynn Lyon, Forest Hills Northern High School

 

Natural disasters are one of the few things in the world that strike regardless of ethnic background, religion, or national borders. Their seemingly arbitrary occurrences mean that any country, no matter how significant, is susceptible to the widespread destruction they leave in their wake. They have destroyed entire economies, and left hundreds of millions of people homeless, with nothing but the clothes on their backs. Luckily, the international community has come together in recent years to try and put a limit on the effects of these disasters. Through efforts such as the Hyogo Framework and the Sendai Framework, thousands of resources, dollars, as well as lives that would have otherwise been destroyed have been preserved. 

The Republic of Peru is no stranger to Natural disasters. With earthquakes, volcanic activity, and tsunamis all wreaking havoc on the country, Peru has been forced to take preventative measures to ensure the safety of its citizens. In 2011, the country founded its first National System of Disaster Risk Management. (SINAGERD) Through a collective effort between both SINAGERD and many others, including the EU, Peru has significantly reduced the damage done to its communities by disasters such as landslides, earthquakes, and flooding. 

The Republic of Peru acknowledges the strides made by the Sendai Framework, but they also realize that more needs to be done regarding International Disaster Risk Reduction. For starters, nations around the globe should each have a department solely devoted to predicting and warning citizens of any and all incoming natural disasters. They should also work to defend the territory in their country against the effects of natural disasters, while simultaneously providing aid and relief to areas that have been undermined by disaster. Secondly, the nations of the world should invest more in technology that has the ability to detect natural disasters such as earthquakes, hurricanes, typhoons, and volcanic activity ahead of time. When it comes to disaster risk management, the most crucial resource we can have is time. More time will allow governments to provide a higher level of protection in areas about to be affected by natural disasters, as well as evacuate more people in the event that a natural disaster reaches catastrophic proportions. Finally, governments around the globe should work to reduce their impact on the environment around them. Studies have shown time and time again that climate change would lead to a spike in the severity of natural disasters around the globe. The easiest way to prevent these disasters from extirpating entire communities is to stop them before the form. By reducing their impact on the environment, countries would help to stop a future in which natural disasters consistently lead to a loss of human Life. 

Whether or not these ideals are agreed upon, the Republic of Peru is looking forward to working with other nations to come to a viable solution.

 

  • Peru
  • Flynn Lyon

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Committee: United Nations Development Programme

Topic: Disaster Risk Reduction

Country: India

Delegate: Kiki Katsumata-Smith 

 

Climate change has taken a tremendous toll on the World and the environment. The slightest increase in temperature can have disastrous impacts, including rising sea levels, and extreme weather, and deforestation. These effects are amplified for coastal countries, as they suffer the immediate consequences. 

 

Specifically, India is suffering greatly from these impacts. This past season, India experienced some of their worst monsoons they had experienced in over 25 years, which had horrible effects in 22 states and caused thousands of deaths. India has already lost over 50% of their mangrove forests, and they are predicted to lose more with the rising sea levels.  The increase in temperature will also lead to harsher monsoon seasons, causing more calamity for this country. According to the World Bank, an increase of 2ºC will cause India’s monsoon season to be highly unpredictable, and an increase of 4ºC will cause India to have extremely destructive monsoons every 10 years. The Bay of Bengal and the Arabian Sea are both predicted to have more intense cyclones, especially on the Eastern coast of India.

 

We agree with the GCF’s plans to help India reach its goals listed in the Paris Climate Agreement, and 2030 Agenda for sustainable development. The 2030 Agenda will help with the restoration of 15,000 hectares of Mangroves and Coral Reefs, and will also help protect the coastal cities against the rising sea levels. From these initiatives, 10 million people are expected to benefit from the shoreline protection, and over 3.5 million tonnes of CO2 will be sequestered through the restoration of the mangroves over the next 30 years. The Indian government has already taken action and has given $43 million to decrease carbon emissions, restore environments and protect the people living in the coastal states of Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, and Odisha.

  • India
  • Kiki Katsumata-Smith

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Natural Disasters are a problem all throughout all the world. There are earthquakes, landslides, floods, and so on. Some of our more developed countries have many ways of repairing, predicting, and defending against these horrible events. However, developing countries would have a much harder time with these issues. One example is the Ivory Coast. Flooding has been severely affecting their economy. During the rainy season, there are no natural harbors and has heavy surf, which causes a lot of flooding. In 2018, a major flood hit the Ivory Coast which caused 18 deaths, and caused a lot of structural damage. The prime minister, Alassane Ouattara believes it is a major issue that needs to be addressed to ensure the safety of the people. Another big problem in the Ivory Coast is poverty. In 2015, the poverty level in the Ivory Coast was a record high of 46.4% of people. This issue started with the Prime Minister saying that he wanted to focus on rebuilding the economy and restoring domestic security.

The president declared 2019 as a “year of social actions” to provide jobs for thousands of people. Due to the success of this year, the poverty level decreased to 46.3% percent poverty, and has been predicted to fall even more by October 2020. Some problems still stand to decrease the level. One is that women must be respected and given jobs, as the IC has one of the highly rated gender inequalities in the world according to the UN. Natural disasters are being dealt with by building artificial harbors to help make flooding less of a risk for its inhabitants who live by the water. The UN actions on this issue is that the Ivory Coast needs funding to be able to build these harbors, as well as ideas on how to fix the economy issue in this country.

 

Some suggested courses of action for fixing this would be developed countries to help support the IC by giving money, sending workers, and helping fix the economy by creating job opportunities, and stop the gender inequality between men and women. Ghana is a country already helping the IC with flooding, as it is a problem in both countries because they are neighboring countries. India, Russia, China, and France are all allies with the IC, and other countries with embassies from the IC like Canada, the US, Lebanon, and Mexico could help with some of these known issues in the IC.

(This position paper is for both topics)

  • Cote d'lVoire
  • Kyle Pardee

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The disaster relief situation in the Kingdom of Thailand and broadly across the world has been worsening greatly over time. With the existential threat of climate change, these disaster relief situations are getting more frequent and severe every year. In 2011 extreme flooding in Thailand lead to 815 confirmed deaths and an economic loss of more than 1.4 billion baht. Thailand and countries like it are being destroyed by climate change caused natural disasters, and the world seems only to care about the polluting countries’ large industry rather than human life. The UNDP has already recognized how vulnerable our coastal communities are to natural disasters and climate change, but the problem needs more than recognition. The economic impact is an estimated 3 trillion dollars spent on recovering from disasters from 1998 to 2017, and without fixing this problem the weaker economies of the world will continually falter without a safety net.

 

That is not to say that there have been no aid for Thailand and similar nations in the past. In fact, the UNDP and the Kingdom of Thailand have had an extremely beneficial relationship in the past with the project labeled “Strengthening Capacity to Address the Risks and Impacts of Climate Change and Extreme Weather Events in Thailand”. We have seen increased knowledge about climate change in our populous, a requirement for new land development to take natural disasters into account, and increased funding for our disaster preparedness unit. This has certainly helped with our immediate problems, but the problem still exists of larger more economically important countries being given a free pass to perpetuate the problems and the middle and low-income nations being forced to ask for global assistance just to stay above water.

 

While Thailand is extremely grateful for the UNDP’s assistance in our fight against natural disasters and climate change, we believe that the standards that were set during the program of “Strengthening Capacity to Address the Risks and Impacts of Climate Change and Extreme Weather Events in Thailand” should be applied to many more countries other than Thailand. They have been helpful in modernizing our infrastructure and ensuring that our citizens are protected from climate change, therefore, Thailand plans to introduce a resolution to apply the team that implemented those changes in our countries gradually world wide. There is a large issue that also needs addressing, however, which is polluting countries that are causing these problems in the first place. While the United Nations has been doing its utmost politically to end climate change, economically little has been done to influence these larger nations. The solution is to partner with the international monetary fund to provide incentives to nations that change their exports to countries with lower carbon emissions per capita. This would both incentivize larger countries to invest in smaller nations industry, but also incentivize less economically efficient countries to prioritize clean energy in industry. Eventually slowing the massive growth of natural disasters before they happen 

 

Works Cited:

Chaamjamal, By: “Climate Change Refugees.” Thongchai Thailand, 15 Aug. 2019, tambonthongchai.com/2018/10/29/climate-change-refugees/.

“Environment and Natural Resources.” Open Development Thailand, 19 Dec. 2017, thailand.opendevelopmentmekong.net/topics/environment-and-natural-resources/.

“Strengthening Capacity to Address the Risks and Impacts of Climate Change and Extreme Weather Events in Thailand: UNDP Climate Change Adaptation.” Climate Change Adaptation, UNDP, www.adaptation-undp.org/projects/sccf-extreme-weather-thailand.

  • Thailand
  • Jackson Bell

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Quality infrastructure is recognized as a crucial element of a high-functioning society by all countries. However, what many of these nations have not considered is the given infrastructure’s ability to withstand severe disasters primarily caused by nature. An unexpected calamity will not only be costly to recover from but will also halt much of the working force which will further hurt the country’s economy. Not only is it important to create durable infrastructure but to also be able to respond effectively to the damage post-disaster. With debris-filled roads, downed power lines and communication technology, as well as crammed hospitals, a plan must be put in place to mitigate the array of issues at hand. Special personnel will be needed for completing a multitude of tasks such as transporting injured civilians to a location where they can receive proper medical attention.

 

Brazil has certainly taken into account the cruciality of a resilient infrastructure and increasingly so since the 2011 floods in Rio de Janeiro, which caused several billion in damage. Annually, Brazil faces $3.9 billion in losses due to natural disasters. The bulk of these damages come from the poor housing that millions in Brazil live within. Houses developed on floodplains are frequently destroyed and mudslides have taken many lives. Brazil has therefore focused large amounts of resources towards more stable dams and better housing development. With better living conditions for the poor, children can focus on education and eventually give back to society. The aforementioned issues are the most urgent natural disaster threats to our nation and we are appropriately responding to them with funds and research to that area. The Brazilian government also is aware that countries that are geographically near our nation suffer from the same issues and we would therefore like to suggest possible solutions.

 

Brazil proposes that research centers with atmospheric radar tracking systems as well as seismographs be strategically placed across the world to be able to notify civilians of advancing disasters in an effort to minimize the loss of life. It would also be beneficial to have UN Peacekeepers provide on-ground support for the countries that are short of help after a disaster. Brazil would like to open up the idea of increased funding for infrastructure to the countries that desperately need it during the conference. Brazil looks forward to working closely with nations facing similar issues such as Paraguay and Colombia, and will also be speaking with nations that have more funding power such as the United States and Germany.

 

  • Brazil
  • Josh Glynn

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United Nations Development Program

Disaster Risk Reduction

Greece

Jenny Qi, Forest Hills Northern High School

 

   

Disaster Risk Reduction is an issue that every nation has dealt with, and is a problem that nations still constantly face. To begin with, the definition of disaster risk is potential loss from a disaster expressed in lives, health status, assets, and services that can happen in particular societies from the impact of a natural hazard. Disaster Risk Reduction is a systematic approach to identify, assess, and reduce disaster risk. According to the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, floods are the most common form of natural disaster followed by tornadoes and earthquakes. Each nation’s goal is to reduce the damage done by certain disasters, and though there have been many advancements in technology to help reduce disaster risks, many nations still suffer from the long-lasting effects of natural disasters.

Earthquakes, floods, heatwaves, and forest fires are the most common natural disasters that occur in Greece. As a result of being located on the Aegean Sea Plate, Greece is one of the most seismically active countries in the world resulting in earthquakes and tsunamis. Because of this and many other natural disasters, Greece has a lot of experience dealing with disaster risk reduction. In the past 365 days, 185 earthquakes with a magnitude of 1.5 or greater have occurred, and in 2018, a series of wildfires that were the second deadliest in the 21st century also occurred during a heatwave that began in the coastal areas of Attica, Greece. From 2005-2015, Greece implemented the Hyogo Framework for Action, carrying out many actions that would reduce the risk of natural disasters. In more recent years, Greece has started undergoing the Sendai Framework for Action, a successor instrument to the Hyogo Framework that runs from 2015 to 2030.  Moreover, the Hellenic National Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction has been focusing on reducing the risk of disasters without having large economic impacts on the country.

Greece notes that the UN is taking many initiatives towards the issue of disaster risk reduction, but there is still much to be done in the future. Greece is currently following the Sendai Framework for Action, and encourages other nations to do so too. The Sendai Framework is an action oriented framework with seven global targets all to be completed by 2030, focusing on four priority areas. While the Hyogo Framework focused more on how to respond to disasters and the losses, the Sendai Framework strives to focus on preventing or stopping natural hazard issues before they happen. 

Greece believes that other nations can reduce the risk of disasters by setting up different warning systems and disaster programs for relevant disasters in the area. While these network systems in Greece are effective at providing an early warning to local civil protection authorities, it has proven more difficult to broadcast warnings to the general population. Greece suggests installing more sirens or developing effective warning systems, in hopes of reducing disaster risk. Finally, the committee should continue undergoing the Sendai Framework and working towards achieving its yearly goals. Greece believes these solutions will be able to help reduce the risk of natural disasters. Greece looks forward to working with all nations to minimize risks and damage caused by disasters.

  • Greece
  • Jenny Qi

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SUBMITTED TO: United Nations Development Programme

FROM: The Socialist Republic of Vietnam

SUBJECT: Disaster Risk Reduction

 

Almost every nation around the globe is subject to extreme weather, making them susceptible to natural disasters. This problem affects the global community both economically and socially, with human and property losses. The Socialist Republic of Vietnam is no exception to the effects of natural disasters being plagued by droughts, earthquakes, floods, forest fires, landslides, sea water intrusion, typhoons, and volcanic eruptions. Floods and typhoons being the most prevalent due to our proximity to the Indian Ocean, and our geographic makeup of low lying deltas. Around 400 people die and go missing each year, and material losses are in the millions of US dollars due to natural disasters. There is no one hundred percent fix to this issue, but being prepared for natural disasters is one hundred percent possible. With our National Strategy for Natural Disaster Prevention, Response, and Mitigation, the number of human and property losses have significantly decreased.

The committees focus, for the topic on disaster risk reduction, should be on preparation and response. An effective resolution will address these equally important aspects of disaster risk reduction. Vietnam hopes to see the following topics addressed: promotion of international cooperation and integration; consolidate the system of laws, policies and mechanisms addressing disaster risk reduction within nations; region by region analysis of risk factor; consolidate organizational structures that already operate to respond to disasters; human resources development and social mobilization plans; financial resources that can be used to fund the solutions; community awareness; development of infrastructure designed to withstand certain extreme weather; enhance the search and rescue capacities; and develop science and technologies related to natural disaster prevention, response and mitigation. With these topics addressed in a resolution it will develop a well rounded course of action that can improve global response to the destruction caused by natural disasters.

The Socialist Republic of Vietnam is looking forward to collaborating with other countries on this topic seeing that natural disasters can never be eradicated. We are open to the ideas and opinions of other nations to combat this issue and hope an effective means of solving this issue will arise in committee. Vietnam urges nations to keep in mind preparation is key for readiness and response. Overall internal preparedness for this issue is important, but external help must also be ready in the event it should be needed. Our nation hopes after this committee meets the world will be more prepared to deal with the inevitable disasters.

 

Sources:

 

Thi Doan, Nguyen. “Viet Nam: Statement Made at the Third UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction (WCDRR).” Viet Nam: Statement Made at the Third UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction (WCDRR) – Policy, Plans & Statements – Knowledge Base – PreventionWeb.net, Viet Nam – Government, 2015, www.preventionweb.net/english/professional/policies/v.php?id=43984.

 

“Vietnam.” GFDRR, www.gfdrr.org/en/vietnam.

 

“Vietnam: National Strategy for Natural Disaster Prevention, Response and Mitigation to 2020.” Vietnam: National Strategy for Natural Disaster Prevention, Response and Mitigation to 2020 – Policy, Plans & Statements – Knowledge Base – PreventionWeb.net, Viet Nam – Government, 2007, www.preventionweb.net/english/professional/policies/v.php?id=60654.

  • The Socialist Republic of Vietnam
  • Hava Szarafinski

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United Nations Development Program

Disaster Risk Reduction

Republic of Ukraine 

Maya Streng, Forest Hills Northern High School

 

Disaster risk reduction is something every country has to keep in mind when making big decisions about the physical aspects of a country like where and how buildings are built,but also where we grow food and where factories are. Every country and Nation will make sure they know how to best protect their nation if there were to be a natural hazard like an earthquake, flood, drought and tornados. If there where a flood or earthquake countries have to make sure the buildings and houses are strong enough to stay standing. Disaster risk reduction is primarily all about the choices nations are willing to make to make themselves less vulnerable. There is no one place where you can escape natural disasters. You may have to be cautious about areas around fault lines, you may have to worry about volcanic eruptions. 

Ukraine is no stranger to natural disasters such as frequent flooding, harsh winter and severe storms. Flood and storms can come through and destroy homes, building and can cause many deaths. Ukraine is trying very hard to mitigate damage from natural disasters. Ukraine is working together with the EUk, in 2010 they initiated the first phase and now are in the second phase of the program of prevention, preparedness and reduction in eastern partnership countries. Ukraine has also joined many other international treaties regarding risk reduction. In 2008 alone 300 disasters killed over 235,000 people and caused immense amounts of destruction. Ukraine is still taking many steps to ensure the safety of the people. The march of 2018 Ukraine participated in an European Civil Protection Forum.

Ukraine teaming up with EU is a great step in the right direction. Ukraine could also create a warning system so citizens would know when the huge storms are coming that cause floods. Citizens of Ukraine would then be able to evacuate in a safer manner where everyone is not as rushed. Also since you would know farther in advance now you would be able to make last minute preparations like making sure supplies and crops wont get as destroyed by puting them inside of a building. With a more advanced warning system there would be less casualties during floods and even those last minute adjustments to crops and structures cna save a lot of money that Ukraine would have had to pay as debts. Ukraine could also could make an agreement with the EU about a safe place to stay there while the storms and floods are still dangerous. This plan will make sure that less people will die during natural disasters.

 

  • Ukraine
  • Maya Streng

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United Nations Development Programme

Disaster Risk Reduction

Republic of the Union of Myanmar

Mariya Jahan

Forest Hills Eastern

 

Disaster risk reduction remains an important topic in the world. Every year, on an average, 90,000 people die due to natural disasters, but 160 million people are affected globally. Natural disasters have been increasing at a steady rate. In 1970, there were 78 severe natural disasters whereas in 2004, there were 348. The United Nations began the Sendai Framework in 2015 and plans to have this framework until 2030. The Sendai Framework intends to understand disaster risk, strengthen the governing during a disaster, invest in disaster risk reduction, and enhance preparedness and protocols for disaster. Finding the correct protocol to protect the civilians of a nation from natural disasters requires a resolution. The United Nations must address this, otherwise, the procedures for disasters will not progress which will result in devastation in all aspects of the country. Myanmar requires immediate action to help improve the precautions needed to save their citizens and also to prevent their economy from plummeting. 

 

In 2012, Myanmar launched the National Adaptation Program for Action to foresee any incoming natural disasters and inspect climate changes to be better prepared. Myanmar is susceptible to natural disasters such as hurricanes, earthquakes, floods, landslides, and volcanoes. In 2008, Myanmar experienced the havoc from Cyclone Nargis (GFDRR). Cyclone Nargis killed over 140,000 people and the damage was worth over 10 billion dollars. Prior to the cyclone, Myanmar lacked storm shelters and was unfit in spreading the news quickly. Due to the natural disasters, Myanmar has lost a great deal of money. On an annual basis, Myanmar loses 185 million U.S. dollars due to natural disasters. In 2016, Myanmar’s government created the National Natural Disaster Committee which regulated internal resources and coordinated assistance from international countries. This committee also ensured better protocol and better regulation of budget during and after the disaster. Along with this, the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR) has been aiding Myanmar. For example, in 2015, the GFDRR provided Myanmar with one-hundred million U.S. dollars to regulate the Ayeyarwady River Basin which has caused floods in the past. Overall, Myanmar has enhanced its institutions to manage the recovery from natural disasters and recognized the urgency to improve their regulations within a short amount of time.

 

Myanmar proposes that the United Nations Development Programme Committee comes together in finding a solution that creates a standard protocol that will ensure countries’ right to aid and protection of its civilians. Myanmar asks the Disaster Risk Reduction Working Group which has been working with Myanmar ever since 2008 to increase funding to predict disasters incoming and be prepared to protect civilians. Myanmar asks for a resolution that addresses these needs, ensures the safety of Myanmar, allows the country to progress as a whole, and prevent the economy from constantly fluctuating.

 

  • Myanmar
  • Mariya Jahan

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United Nations Development Program

Disaster Risk Reduction

Federal Republic of Somalia

Naman Jain

Forest Hills Eastern

 

Natural disasters present the world with a prodigious challenge. According to the World Bank, about two million people have lost their lives as a result of natural disasters since 1980. The total economic loss has been more than 3 trillion USD. The challenge is particularly severe in developing countries, as they are both less able to cope with the impact and more likely to be affected. The World Bank found that 91 percent of the people facing storm-related disasters live in countries that have poor human development. The issue of natural disasters must be resolved. The UN plays a vital role in disaster recovery and risk reduction. Disasters pose a critical threat to achieving the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals including ending poverty and world hunger. To resolve the issue of natural disasters, the United Nations Development Program should prepare developing countries for disasters in advance and help them quickly deal with the aftermath. 

 

As a country that has recently undergone a devastating drought, Somalia understands how natural disasters in an unprepared country create a multitude of other problems. In 2019, more than 2 million people were at risk of starvation due to a lack of crops in Somalia. A drought in 2011 that was remarked to be the “worst in 60 years” caused a famine that various articles claim killed more than 260,000 people and affected 13 million people in the Horn of Africa. Additionally, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) found that flash flooding displaces thousands of people in Somalia. Somalia’s past political instability has disrupted the needed services to plan and develop infrastructure for disaster risk reduction. Somalia has been helped by the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR) because of its high vulnerability and unstable economy. Still, Somalia requires assistance for this issue. 

 

Somalia proposes that the United Nations help developing countries reduce the direct harm of the disaster itself and efficiently deal with the fallout that occurs afterward by preparing them for natural disasters. Unpreparedness can make natural disasters much more harmful. Nations without proper planning, infrastructure, and coordination suffer much more from these disasters. They are detrimental to economic growth and cause increased political and social tensions. Assistance creating physical infrastructures and supporting developing countries lower disaster risk by encouraging proper planning and coordination is necessary. Somalia supports a resolution that advocates for the United Nations through NGOs supporting developing countries both before and after natural disasters through risk aversion and disaster relief.

  • Federal Republic of Somalia
  • Naman Jain

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United Nations Development Program

Disaster Risk Reduction

Finland

Anay Moitra

Forest Hills Eastern

 

Natural disasters appear in many shapes and forms, and the damage performed by them can be extremely costly. According to Center for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters, in 2018 alone, 315 natural disasters were recorded all over the world causing 11,804 deaths. Roughly 68 million people were affected and 131.7 billion USD was lost due to the damage. Disaster risk reduction require a high quality of preparedness and important up-front costs. The United Nations has previously helped recover the devastating impacts of major hurricanes in the United States by reconstructing communities and rehabilitating hundreds of kilometers of roads. According to the United Nations, in 2001, the General Assembly celebrated the International Day For Natural Disaster Reduction, as a vehicle to promote a global awareness of natural disaster reduction, including disaster prevention, mitigation, and preparedness.  

 

Every year, floods and snowstorms generate massive amounts of financial costs in Finland. According to Geology: Natural Disasters, floods result in about ten million euros in damages almost every year even though Finland is well prepared for natural disasters. The Finnish Cooperation Network ensures that disaster risk reduction is a local and national priority, identifies, monitors risk and enhance early warning, builds a culture of safety and resilience, strengthen disaster preparedness and effective response and reducing the underlying risk factors. Finland is part of the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR) which works towards the substantial reduction of disaster risk and losses. 

 

Finland proposes that the United Nations support countries with multiple natural disasters by providing significant components that help fight natural disasters. Atmospheric monitoring can detect tropical storms many days away, and allow for the evacuation of potentially affected areas with minimal loss of life. Study of seismic activity may allow earthquakes or volcanic eruptions to be foreseen, and can certainly provide early warning of tsunamis; construction techniques can increase the survivability of buildings. Dams can help to control and prevent the flooding of river systems, through the potential for other environmental effects requires careful evaluation of the regional ecosystem. The funding of these materials will be a number of countries, including Finland. These countries are least vulnerable to natural disasters that have less than 5% risk of natural disasters. A number of countries do not have these resources, and possessing the materials would reduce the death rates caused by natural disasters.  

 

  • Finland
  • Anay Moitra

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United Nations Development Program

Disaster Risk Reduction

Trinidad and Tobago

Vishnu Mano

Forest Hills Eastern

 

Natural disasters wreak havoc in a majority of the countries in the world every year. Annually, an average of 3,455 floods, 2,689 storms, 470 droughts, and 395 instances of extreme temperatures occur around the world. According to the United Nations Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR), disasters have cost the world over 2.5 trillion dollars since the turn of the 21st century. Every year, an estimated 180 billion dollars is lost from cyclones and earthquakes alone. From 2002-2014, 2.9 billion people have been affected by disasters and over 1.2 million killed. Island countries, countries that lie on fault lines, and coastal countries have been subject to the brutal effects of natural disasters. UNDRR  is pivotal to address as natural disasters claim around 90,000 people yearly.

 

Trinidad and Tobago encourages the United Nations to increase funding for disaster risk reduction to better understand the disasters as well as help citizens migrate out of harm’s way. Since Trinidad and Tobago is an island country in the Atlantic Ocean, it is vulnerable to hurricanes. Additionally, Trinidad and Tobago lies on the fault line between the clashing Caribbean Plate and South American Plate which puts the country in risk of earthquakes and tsunamis. Trinidad and Tobago works towards decreasing disaster risk reduction through the National Earthquake Plan. This plan focuses on minimizing the loss of life and decreasing the damage to the environment and property. The plan details actions to be taken to migrate, prepare for, and respond effectively to the impacts of major earthquakes and tsunamis. Trinidad and Tobago’s legislature and The Minister of National Security, Honorable Stuart R. Young, has been working on improving upon The Disaster Measures Act, as well as the Environmental Management Act to reduce the disaster risk. Trinidad and Tobago is a part of the Caribbean Community and Common Market (CARICOM) and has taken the leading position within this group. The head of the Caribbean Emergency Management Agency, Ronald Jackson, has worked hand in hand with CARICOM to discuss using its indeginous solutions to manage disaster risk with modern technology.

 

Trinidad and Tobago strongly urges the United Nations to increase funding for Disaster Risk Reduction to create an International Disaster Plan to help the citizens of every country migrate, prepare for, and respond effectively to the impacts of major disasters. Using voluntary payments to fund this initiative can allow some funding to go towards researching these disasters and understanding the dangers, risk, and damage involved with each. It is crucial to create the International Disaster Plan and to discover more about each disaster to reduce the loss of life as well as decreasing the damage. This plan will not only decrease the disaster risk but will also enforce international cooperation.

  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Vishnu Mano

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United Nations Development Program

Disaster Risk Reduction

Turkey

Nanda Murali

Forest Hills Eastern

 

The threat of natural disasters is considered a significant issue in the modern world. In the last ten years, more than 1.5 billion people have been affected by disasters that have cost more than $1.3 trillion. Climate change, weak governance, and increasing population densities are driving disaster risk upwards. There are two sides to disaster reduction: lessening the direct harm of the disaster, and controlling the aftereffects. Avoiding disasters and avoiding mass damage is the best way to combat this issue. 

 

As a country with a high level of disaster risk, Turkey recognizes the need for immediate action. In 1999, the 7.1 magnitude marmara earthquake resulted in over 18,000 deaths and over $28 billion in losses. The Global Facility for Disaster Risk and Recovery (GDFRR) partnered with the World Bank to support reconstruction after the earthquake. Turkey is also prone to landslides, floods, and tsunamis. In recent years, Turkey has become a significant refugee-hosting country. The population distribution along the Dead Sea Rift and East Anatolian Fault zones is rapidly changing; approximately 2.8 million Syrians under temporary protection have been integrated into cities, towns, and villages as of 2017. This is stressing the infrastructure and increasing potential risk exposure. The largest city in the country, Istanbul, lies on the North Anatolian fault. 33% of schools are potentially seismically vulnerable. The Turkish government instituted the Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency (AFAD) in 2009. In 2015, the government adopted the Turkey National Disaster Response Plan to guide all disaster and emergency response. The main priorities of the government now is to reduce seismic risk in schools and enhance the capacity to manage the effects. 

 

Turkey urges that the UNDP focus on humanitarian efforts in seismic activity, by partnering with NGO’s including the Turkish Red Crescent, Oxfam International, and the Red Cross in order to raise emergency funds due to earthquakes and other disasters. Also, Turkey proposes increased research on seismic activity with the Global Facility for Disaster Risk and Recovery. The GDFRR has accomplished tremendous efforts in working with Turkey and other countries.

Turkey will endorse any resolution that will institute seismic research and work with current standing organizations focused on the issue of disaster risk reduction. 

 

  • Turkey
  • Nanda Murali

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United Nations Development Programme

Disaster Risk Reduction

Democratic Republic of the Congo 

Forest Hills Eastern

Tanvi Ravi

 

The destruction caused by natural disasters remains a looming threat globally. In a report from the World Health Organization, approximately 90,000 people die each year worldwide from natural disasters. Predicting and preventing these catastrophic natural disasters are two critical components that require further consideration regarding a resolution of disaster risk reduction. Most recently in 2015, the United Nations implemented the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction. Although there is progress being made, a report made by UNDRR in 2019 states that “the pace of disaster risk creation is exceeding that of risk reduction efforts.” The Democratic Republic of the Congo encounters many natural disasters including droughts, volcanic eruptions, and floods. For example, the floods that occurred during 2018 in The Democratic Republic of the Congo affected 15,743 lives and caused the death of 51 people. For nations globally to be protected from the looming threat of problems caused by natural disasters, the United Nations must determine necessary measures to be taken when faced with natural disasters.

 

As a country that confronts many natural disasters, The Democratic Republic of the Congo empathizes and relates to the havoc and devastating effects that natural disasters have on a country. Attempting to prevent these natural disasters and managing the negative after-effects efficiently are both extremely important to The Democratic Republic of the Congo. Currently, the Democratic Republic of the Congo is creating the first disaster risk reduction policy with the UNDP. The National Strategy for Disaster Risk Reduction and Prevention (SNPRRC) is a program that strengthens national disaster risk management, as well as promotes the effectiveness of disaster risk management to populations. The program is significant in reducing disaster risk in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. To aid nations in times of crisis, The Democratic Republic of the Congo wholeheartedly encourages the United Nations to support and promote programs that provide disaster relief, like the National Strategy for Disaster Risk Reduction and Prevention. It is vital for the safety of people worldwide that precautionary measures are taken to help prevent disaster, and damage control steps are taken to minimize destruction. 

The Democratic Republic of the Congo proposes that the United Nations promote, fund, and develop disaster risk management programs in order to protect the global population from natural disasters. As a country that encountered numerous natural disasters such as floods, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, To subdue these devastating effects caused by cataclysmic events, the UN can implement training programs to prepare for these events and to provide monetary aid to nations after these catastrophic events. It is vital that the United Nations Development Programme rapidly implements relief programs to protect the people and economy of nations facing these disasters. A resolution that promotes predicting and preventing natural disasters will aid significantly in protecting people and economies around the world.

  • Democratic Republic of the Congo
  • Tanvi Ravi

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United Nations Development Programme

Disaster Risk Reduction

The Bahamas 

Stephanie Tolly

Forest Hills Eastern

 

Natural disasters inflict harm across the globe. Preventing the harm of the disaster itself, as well as dealing with the aftermath that inevitably occurs are two issues that require a resolution. Historically, islet nations have faced the gravest destruction. For example, between 1950 and 2012, natural disasters of the Pacific region affected an estimated 9.2 million people. Even with modern technology, such as open-ocean buoys, coastal tide gauges, reconnaissance aircrafts, and satellites, the prediction of tropical storms is not an exact science. The lack of preparedness and intensity of disasters led to the 9,811 reported deaths of Pacific citizens during this time period. Issues of preparedness and addressing the fallout in regards to natural disasters remain pivotal questions that the United Nations Development Programme must address. In order for citizens of the world to be protected from natural phenomena, the United Nations must clearly articulate standard provisions. Furthermore, the United Nations must determine the minimum restoration a nation must undergo in order to ensure that a supernatural event is not devastating to an area. 

 

As a country that has recently been struck by Hurricane Dorian, The Bahamas understand how natural disasters can ravage residential, commercial, and industrial properties. According to our Prime Minister, Hubert Minnis, the island of Abaco, which was hit by Hurricane Dorian, “is decimated and no longer exists.” The northwest Bahamian islands were impacted for approximately sixty hours and “concrete structures were turned to dust.” As public debt in The Bahamas increased due to hurricane reconstruction and relief financing in 2017, the nation has consistently been faced economic challenges due to natural disasters. Following several years of continuous hurricane impact, The Bahamas founded the National Disaster Preparedness Baseline Assessment (NDPBA) in 1961 in order to collaborate with other nations in concern to disaster risk reduction initiatives. It is paramount to the general safety of many populations to establish a procedure in detecting, preparing for, and managing the aftermath of a natural disaster. 

 

The Bahamas propose that the United Nations establish a standard protocol regarding the detecting and reporting of a natural disaster as well as providing relief afterward in order to eliminate the controversy surrounding the aid of the affected nations. As a country often affected by hurricanes and other tropical storms, The Bahamas knows firsthand the effects that social and economic instability can have on a country, and acknowledges that the harm inflicted by natural disasters can be reduced by increased preparedness. Standardizing response to natural disasters is the most effective way for the United Nations to promote the safety of global citizens. A resolution that advocates an efficient response to natural disasters including international aid to help reconstruct infrastructure, medical aid, and humanitarian assistance will help stabilize the economies of many nations of the world and save the lives of countless citizens of the world as well. 

  • The Bahamas
  • Stephanie Tolly

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United Nations Development Programme

Disaster Risk Reduction

Cambodia

Nathan Jaymes Weller

Forest Hills Eastern

 

Every year, countless natural disasters strike numerous parts of the globe, killing around 90,000 and affecting nearly 160 million people on average, according to the World Health Organization. Such disasters can be and almost always are completely devastating, not only for the regions which they hit, but for the global community as a whole. Without proper prevention and recovery, it can be almost impossible for certain countries, especially third world countries like Cambodia, to rebound from a disaster’s effects. The United Nations has dealt with this issue in the past, including Sendai Framework. The occurrence of natural disasters is inevitable, but the afterlash can be made less severe with sufficient help and resources. In order to reduce the negative impact that natural disasters like earthquakes and hurricanes have on certain countries and regions of the world, it is important that proper and sufficient aid is given to the countries who need it most.

 

Cambodia is one of the most disaster-prone countries in all of Asia, with floods and droughts being its main concerns. The National Committee for Disaster Management (NCDM) is Cambodia’s lead authority in disaster management and response. Its primary responsibility is emergency preparedness and relief. The NCDM works both internally and on the international level. In addition, support is given from the Cambodian Red Cross and the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces. In the past, Cambodia implemented the Hyogo Framework for Action to help emergency preparedness. In 2015, it passed legislation to better prepare the country for the events of natural disasters. To date, Cambodia has over 50,000 users registered to receive alerts about floods, droughts, and other disasters through the Ministry of Water Resources and Meteorology according to the Disaster Management Reference Book. To deal with the issues of natural disasters, Cambodia has enacted and passed many laws and regulations to better prepare its people for the aftermath and occurrence of numerous natural disasters it faces on a yearly basis, including improved health care and an Early Warning System.

 

 

Cambodia recommends an expansion of Early Warning Systems, much like the system which they have, to better make people aware of oncoming disasters. Cambodia also recommends that groups from countries around the world, such as Cambodia’s NCDM, work together to better formulate plans for dealing with the effects of natural disasters. Also, it suggests that the UNDP, with the help of funds from those countries willing to help and world banks and funds (such as the Asian Development Bank and International Monetary Fund), supply monetary aid to the poorer countries who are repeatedly faced with numerous natural disasters in order to improve infrastructure to blunt the impacts of these disasters.

 

  • Cambodia
  • Nathan J Weller

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People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria

United Nations Development Programme: Disaster Risk Reduction

 

Nature’s cycles and unique environments create a habitable world for many forms of life. Yet it is also the cause of uncontrollable destruction. This destruction can eliminate the progress of hundreds of years of development and put our citizens in harm’s way. Without preparation, thousands can die. We cannot control the root source of the problem— as nature is its own unpredictable being, but we can unite under its dangers as we share the consequences of these natural disasters. 

Algeria is a place prone to many floods, earthquakes, and tsunamis. Just in 2003, we were hit with a 6.3 magnitude earthquake which killed 2,271 people. Our citizens have reached out to the government for more help dealing with the lack of preparation. In response to Algerian citizens’ needs and recent civil unrest, President Abdelaziz Bouteflika stepped down and was replaced this year by President Abdelkader Bensalah. This change was so recent that the Algerian government has had little time to respond to the needs of disaster risk reduction. Even now, this decision is not final; another election will be held this December. However, Algeria has been more active internationally. We discussed our needs in the 3rd World Conference in February, 2019, and our UN representatives went through training sessions on how to most effectively make cities resilient to disasters. There, we decided to implement disaster risk reduction committees within more local level government (governorate), decentralizing the issue, thus reaching more citizens. 

 

This is slight progress in the right direction, but with the social unrest within our country, and times more focused on the upcoming election, Algeria needs a more efficient and simple plan for disaster risk reduction. We support plans similar to those laid out in the 3rd World Conference, and we plan to continue in that direction within our country. Algeria would also like to see more plans on structural fixes: ways to change the way of building so that there is less debris to harm citizens as well as to manage post-disaster.

 

  • Algeria
  • Annika Santos

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Forest Hills Central

New Zealand

United Nations Development Program (UNDP): Disaster Risk Reduction

 

With special attention towards risk reduction in coastal areas such as the Caribbean or Philippines and areas affected by major tropical storms such as those of 2019 or Cyclone Gita whos winds reached 143 mph and killed two people. New Zealand would like to help reduce the number of deaths from these storms to essentially zero and ensure that people who are most affected by these storms get the help they desperately need. Engineering solutions to these problems are necessary in this day and age so as to limit suffering around the world and strengthening ties between nations and peoples.

 

The refugees from these countries are flooding New Zealand such as those from Kiribati Or other smaller islands that have been hurt by increased tropical storms and other natural events such as sea level rising by 3.4 mm each year caused by climate change. New Zealand has a history of helping refugees especially those of climate due to the fact that we find our roots in the overpopulated land of Britain seeking refuge from other factors. Disasters are quite rare except for the occasional earthquake or flood such as the Christchurch earthquake in 2011. The road infrastructure within New Zealand is quite good for an except for direct routes which are hindered by mountains and our other odd geographic features and we would like to extend this infrastructure to other less developed countries who cannot afford it causing more disasters in these areas. Usable roads are essential to any infrastructure and to help areas with disaster reduction by moving equipment and supplies that are essential to any cleanup or relief effort. 

 

 

New Zealand would like to put forth efforts to help increase infrastructure and help aid countries who are in desperate need of solutions to the growing problem of natural disasters. We would like to implement a system to define the risk each area possess and their ability to deal with the problem, those who countries are at high risk and low ability to deal with the problem will receive more aid for infrastructure than others whom can help themselves. We also need to reach more than just this solution we need to get to the root of the problem dealing with the factors that are causing these natural disasters and figuring out ways to engineer solutions tailored to each specific problem and problem area. 

 

  • New Zealand
  • William McDonald

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Committee: United Nations Development Programme

Country: Republic of Rwanda

Topic: Disaster Risk Reduction

 

Over the last decade, the frequency and intensity of natural hazard-induced disasters, particularly floods and droughts, have significantly increased in Rwanda, raising the toll of human casualties as well as economic and environmental losses. Potential consequences of climate change are likely to further exacerbate Rwanda’s vulnerability to disasters and the magnitude of their impacts. Risk is the probability of a hazard turning into a disaster, with household’s or communities being affected in such a manner that their lives and livelihoods are seriously disrupted beyond their capacity to cope or withstand using their own resources, with the result that affected populations suffer serious widespread human, material, economic orenvironmental losses. Poor communities are predisposed to disasters due to a combination of factors such as poor settlement planning and lack of proper sanitation infrastructure, especially in flood prone areas.. These factors, coupled with naturally occurring hazards such as droughts, floods, landslides and epidemic outbreaks, among others, currently propelled by climatic change, pose extremely high and increasing disaster risks to the Rwandan society. 

The policy of Rwanda emphasizes preparedness of the Government, communities and other stakeholders for Disaster Management activities. It aims at the establishment and strengthening of Disaster Management institutions, partnerships while collaborating Gender, Human Rights and Climate Change into Disaster Management activities. The ultimate goal is to increase the resilience of vulnerable groups to disasters. This policy presents the institutional structures, roles, responsibilities, authorities and key processes required to achieve a coordinated, coherent and consistent management of disaster related issues. Finally, this policy provides overarching frameworks for decision-making and coordination across Disaster Management sectors, including government ministries, civil society organizations, international organizations and the private sector. 

Disaster Risk Management encompasses a full array of aspects including preparedness, mitigation, prevention, relief, recovery and rehabilitation. Rwanda’s policy aims to increase and sustain the resilience of vulnerable communities to hazards through the diversification of their livelihoods and coping mechanisms. This entails a shift from short term plans to sustainable planning mechanisms. This policy aims to strengthen Disaster Management in Rwanda, in order to preserve life and to minimize suffering by providing sufficient and timely early warning and relevant information to the population on potential hazards that may result in disasters.

Understanding the concept and challenges of disaster risk reduction (DRR) is imperative as there is an increasing need to place greater policy attention on reducing human vulnerabilities to potential natural hazards. A shift to a proactive approach in disaster management is necessary as it would not only create better preparedness for future disasters but also contribute to the progress in human development and the building of adaptive capacity to climate change. Addressing the underlying factors of human vulnerabilities would create a win-win solution to the advancement of DRR, sustainable development and climate change adaptation. This in turn will increase the resilience of state and community.

 Moreover, major natural disaster occurrences always demand a great amount of international aid and assistance. Considering the limit to these resources, continued natural disaster crises may create aid fatigue among international donors and communities. Therefore, governments are encouraged to play a key role in supporting DRR across various sectors by involving various stakeholders. A well implemented DRR offers a long­term, preventative solution to existing vulnerabilities to natural disasters hence creating greater preparedness to and minimising the impact of natural hazards. However, looking at the existing gaps and challenges to the implementation of DRR, improvements are still much needed. In particular, there is a need to develop cross cutting policy implementations through dialogue among practitioners and policymaking communities across issues.

In this committee, there is a new opportunity to determine better ways to reduce the risk of disasters in a manner that will work for nations all around the world. The Rwandan delegation stresses the importance of individualized local and national level plans for disaster prevention. This is a serious topic and Rwanda looks forward to working with the committee to create approaches that will have better, more sustainable actions.


  • Repulic of Rwanda
  • Tyler Cattini

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Country: Afghanistan

Committee: United Nations Development Program

Topic: Disaster Risk Reduction

Delegate: Amanda Jaworsky

School: Williamston High School

Although natural disasters display a wild, uncontrollable side of the environment we live in, our increasing ability to detect and prepare for these events before they hit has given us much greater control over their effects in recent years. It has become increasingly clear how important it is to prepare for natural disasters, especially meteorological events, which caused 97.9 billion dollars worth of damage in 2018 alone. As we face the effects of climate change these meteorological events are only predicted to worsen, making it imperative to create build strong infrastructure as soon as possible to prepare for what is to come. Natural disasters have the capability to inflict many levels of damage on a society and as a result, there are many levels of direct and indirect intervention that can be utilized to lessen the impacts of such events. These levels include mitigation of adverse effects brought on by natural disaster, prevention of damage, transfer of financial burdens to different groups, and preparedness through education.

Like many other countries, there are a variety of natural disasters that Afghanistan is at high risk for. These specifically include earthquakes, flooding, droughts, and landslides. As a result of weak infrastructure and high levels of poverty, Afghanistan does not have the tools necessary for a complete disaster risk management system. However, in recent years Afghanistan has received assistance from the Global Facility for Disaster Risk and Reduction and has managed to begin building the institutional frameworks to combat their high risk of natural disasters. Yet even these efforts have been slow progress as a result of insufficient funds, lack of human resources and insecurity. The largest struggles that Afghanistan faces are political instability and lack of funds, without access to these resources it is impossible to build the systems and infrastructure necessary for proper warning, evacuation systems, and migration plans. 

Due to their own personal struggles, Afghanistan emphasizes the importance of proper fund-allocation and guidance to poor and unstable countries. Afghanistan would like to see the creation of stronger international aid in this committee. While the aid currently provided by organizations like the GFDRR is a great assistance to countries with limited funds, even these groups are not able to generate enough for very impoverished countries. Furthermore, Afghanistan would like to see more focus on helping countries develop their own systems that are self-sustaining within the country. The international aid that Afghanistan receives is much appreciated, as is the guidance that is offered alongside it, but one of the problems with receiving so much of this aid is that it doesn’t do as much to build risk prevention and focuses more heavily on disaster relief.

 

  • Afghanistan
  • Amanda Jaworsky

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United Nations Development Programme

Disaster Risk Reduction

Republic of Costa Rica

Evan Calderón, Forest Hills Northern High School

 

Natural Disasters have been an issue throughout all of history. Nearly every part of the world is affected in some way or another by natural disasters, from earthquakes near the San Andreas fault, to volcanic eruptions in Indonesia, to tsunamis in Japan. With natural disasters comes the destruction brought upon civilizations and the resulting economic impact. Natural disasters can obliterate infrastructure, damage agriculture, and even cause death. To minimize these consequences, the international community has taken initiatives in the form of frameworks and accords. The first major development in this issue came in the form of the Hyogo Framework established in 2005 and outlined details and steps taken to reduce the risk of disaster. After it reached its end date, it was replaced by the Sendai Framework which more clearly and cohesively lays out priorities and goals for the year 2030 in order to reduce natural disaster consequences. 

Costa Rica is very familiar with natural disasters and reducing their risk, with 77.9% of their population and 80.1% of their gross domestic product lying within areas of a high risk of natural disaster, most of these consisting of two main types: earthquakes and hurricanes. Because of the high risk of the country, Costa Rica has taken initiative to reduce damage brought upon by disasters. For one, the country has built and maintained an effective Disaster Risk Reduction program which deals with educating the public about the issue, creating an early warning alert system to warn the general public, and much more. This program has effectively lowered the cost of damage inflicted upon the nation and has been proven to be effective. Costa Rica is also a firm believer in the Sendai Framework and works to implement it on a national and international level.

Noting that the Sendai Framework is a huge step forward for the international community and reducing the risk of disasters, there is still a huge need for improving it and giving it logistics. The nation of Costa Rica believes in Sendai Framework and believes every country should follow it and implement the policies and suggestions enacted by the Framework. It has four priorities about the issue and seven goals to complete by the year 2030 to reduce those affected by disasters, those killed by them, and the percent of gross domestic product affected by natural disasters. 

 

To reduce the hazards and risks caused by natural disasters around the world, a few steps are necessary. First of all, Costa Rica proposes that other countries follow its initiative by creating their own national disaster program that can effectively predict, warn, and defend against natural disasters. Seeing as Costa Rica’s program has been effective, damage and destruction caused by disasters can be greatly reduced. Next, the committee should take steps to create the specifications needed to carry out the Sendai Framework and add the numbers necessary to complete the goals by the year 2030. With these solutions, Costa Rica is confident that the international community can effectively decrease the danger brought by natural disasters and Costa Rica looks forward to working with this committee. 

 

  • Republic of Costa Rica
  • Evan Calderon

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Committee: United Nations Development Programme

Topic: Disaster Risk Reduction

Country: France

Delegate: Aneesa Berner

 

France acknowledges the fact that natural disasters are inevitable and can be catastrophic. The delegation of French is deeply concerned with the statistics surrounding natural disasters. According to WHO, around 90,000 people die each year from natural disasters and 160 million people are affected. France hopes to work to reduce the unnecessary damage that is done in countries simply because they did not have stable infrastructure, proper equipment to detect the magnitude of the natural disaster, or the time and methods to prepare citizens. In France, historically, the most common natural disaster occurs in the form of mass flooding. This flooding often affects highly populated cities in France, such as Paris. France has governmental programs dedicated to Disaster Risk Reduction that work seamlessly between national and local public authorities. 

 

The French Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction as well as NGOs throughout France work together to develop new policies involving the best ways to approach natural disasters. The French Platform For Disaster Risk Reduction has outlined its key focus areas, which include “flood risk management, education, vigilance, resilience, and evaluation of the effectiveness of local risk prevention planning”. The French government has numerous research institutes to figure out how to better prepare and predict, and one of those being the National Observatory of Natural Risks (ONRN) The French government also finds it important to work with other countries to figure out how to better their own systems and aid other countries in times of need. For example Japan and France work together to compile data and better the other countries disaster preparation systems. France hopes to modernize the methods through which people learn and prepare for upcoming natural disasters. Previously during high flood warnings the French government used mobile phones to distribute information. This method ended up aiding in a greater overall preparation for the floods of those in 2500 municipalities. The French government, furthermore, believes that disaster risk reduction should not only be a national topic but also a local topic. After a cyclone hit France in 2010, it only took 2 years for 7,700 municipalities in areas with a greater risk of natural disasters to develop unique community based plans for disaster risk reduction. 

 

In March of 2015, France pledged a full time commitment in implementing the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction which was also adopted by the UN. The French delegation stresses the importance of individualized local and national level plans for disaster prevention and the modernization of communication system for the faster and more effective means of sharing information in relation to natural hazards. The French delegation is open to funding to aid in bettering disaster prevention in other countries and working together with governments of other countries to collaborate on research to help develop programs and prevent catastrophes.

 

  • France
  • Aneesa Berner

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November 9, 2019

SUBMITTED TO: United Nations Development Programme

FROM: Republic of South Korea

SUBJECT: Disaster Risk Reduction

Royal Oak High School

Allyson Gilliland

 

Disasters, both natural and manmade, strike without respect to national borders and can cause damage that is inversely related to preparation. South Korea is at risk from multiple types of natural disasters—including landslides, earthquakes, and even tsunamis—but typhoons and the accompanied flooding stands apart; they are the most damaging and the most frequent of the natural dangers facing South Korea. Man-made disasters, on the other hand, South Korea has had its fair share.

What is being done to assist/aid in maintaining the control of disasters in South Korea? Storms joined by floods have yearly hit South Korea and accordingly caused tremendous effects. At the degree of the local government, the Ministry of the Interior and Safety (MOIS) has given the national rules on the most proficient method to manage such catastrophes. Also, the segment managing catastrophe aversion in every nearby government has actualized the focal government’s open approach in the area. Among numerous experts, structural architects have overwhelmed the field specifically by involving significant posts (Ha, 2018). When believing that the degree of assorted variety has not been similarly epitomized in HR, the Korean structure has been fairly uneven. 

In the 1980s and 1990s, the government identified more than 500 sites as being highly vulnerable to typhoon winds and floods, and between 1998 and 2004 invested more than 1 billion USD in mitigating the risk at these locations.6 Since 1990, storms like Typhoons Gladys (1991) and Rusa have caused South Korea to accelerate its flood defense measures. The Office of the Prime Minister set up a task force for planning comprehensive flood mitigation strategies following Typhoon Rusa; between 2003 and 2011, the task force planned to allocate over 40 billion KRW (roughly 35 million USD in 2010 dollars) across 76 different projects from flood forecasting to retrofitting aged facilities and it also established additional funds for post-disaster recovery systems.

The Republic of South Korea believes that if the United Nations were to help countries with the biggest threats of disaster, the impact of said disasters would be lesser. A good resolution would be to better prepare countries from the risk before the disaster takes place. One thing is to make sure that disaster risk reduction is a worldwide priority with a strong institutional basis for implementation. And to identify, assess and track disaster risks and enhance early warning. 

 

South Korea looks forward to speaking with all nations on a plan to reduce disaster destruction.

 

  • Republic of South Korea
  • Allyson Gilliland

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Country: Fiji
Committee: UNDP
Topic: Disaster Risk Reduction
Delegate: William Bellinger
School: Williamston High School

 

Disasters often follow natural destruction.  Nations across the world face an array of disasters each year whether it be announced or not.  A disaster’s intensity varies greatly depending upon the natural force that strikes a nation. The way in which it impacts a society is then heavily dependent on the surrounding landscape, population size, sense of community/willingness to help, financial well-being and many more aspects of one’s location.  These factors relating to agriculture, landscape, and human interactions can and will have an immense impact on the risk of impending disasters. With each decision made by a nation, the severity of disasters may be exacerbated, or reduced depending on the nation’s leaders.

Fiji experiences an array of natural disasters such as cyclones, floods, droughts, earthquakes, and even tsunamis.  Cyclones are tropical hurricanes and are the most frequent form of destruction surrounding the pacific. These cyclones provide intense rainfall as well as destructive winds and sea swelling.  Secondly, the Fiji Islands lay over a seismic hotspot meaning they are subject to frequent earthquakes and tremors. These forces shake the ground intensely causing the crumbling of any human structures whether it be an advanced skyscraper or a shack in the local village.  As a result of the extreme earth movements, tsunamis may be formed. A tsunami is simply a wall of water created by earthquakes underneath the ocean. These waves travel at high speeds at an impressive height, clearing out human locations quickly. Fiji has not been able to protect itself from tsunamis or cyclones currently.  Both Tsunamis and cyclones are detrimental to the nation of Fiji and must be foreseen in order for disaster reduction to even begin.

 

In this upcoming committee, Fiji is hoping to work with nations from around the globe to both receive as well as distribute aid and resources to help reduce any damages created by future disasters.  Fiji has been considering possible aid redistribution organization that would be headed by a single representative from each nation to participate. From there, aid would be distributed according to the voted on needs of the represented nations.  Fiji looks forward to helping as well as possibly receiving help from all nations in this committee.

 

  • Fiji
  • Sir William Daniel Bellinger II

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Country: El Salvador
Committee:  UNDP
Topic: Reduction of Disaster
Delegate: Carly Clos
School: Williamston High School

 

Natural disasters are an occurrence that creates unimaginable obliteration and destruction, such as tornadoes, floods, earthquakes, tsunamis or volcanic eruptions. In addition to impacting the homes and wellbeing of people, disasters may cause economic devastation. Addressing major underlying problems, strong medical, transportation, sanitation, and power-distribution infrastructure allows for rapid disaster-prepared supplying of economic resources. This optimizes and keeps the consistency of service when disaster strikes, not to mention enabling aid delivery. Natural disasters kill around 90,000 people each year and impact approximately 160 million people worldwide. Dealing with the destructive habits of these disasters, and quickly and efficiently dealing with them are the main focuses of the UNDP. The UN Disaster Risk Reduction Office (UNDRR) is working towards significant disaster risk and loss reduction to ensure a sustainable future.

 

El Salvador has been vulnerable to disruptive earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, tropical storms and droughts. Land deterioration and depletion, intensified by persistent floods and drought, provide a negative impact on agricultural production, further disrupting rural poor’s lives. The Salvadoran government has developed the El Salvador Disaster Risk Management Policy Loan in consideration of this vulnerability. This revolutionary financial asset enables quick access to funds for the country after a natural disaster. Thus, providing quicker emergency response while helping to prevent transferring tight budget funds from other development programs. 

Nations should implement a financial security plan that can help long-term to shield their countries from the economic impact of crises, along with El Salvador. Countries need to be able to support themselves in times of need. Not only El Salvador, but other countries should improve their power to reduce the effects of natural disasters through the use of early warning systems. When citizens are more alert, they may brace for any catastrophe in advance. Nations which need food as a consequence of a devastating natural disaster need organisations who work to address starvation and prevent poverty so that the population does not crash. El Salvador wants to work with other countries suffering with many natural disasters.

  • El Salvador
  • Carly Clos

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Reducing the impacts that events like earthquakes, floods, droughts, and other natural hazards is important work and needs to be dealt with as such. . A lot of people around the world have few resources available, and certainly not enough information on how to help themselves when it is needed. Disasters are dangerous for people directly affected by them and for the economy of a country as a whole, so having ways for people and economies pull themselves out of risk is vital.

 

Sweden set up the MSB, Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency, in January 2017. MSB assesses the dangers of disasters and sends help to those who need it most. MSB hopes to focus on preventing the tension and brokenness left in the wake of disasters. MSB also informs the Swedish government on international risk reduction opportunities and educates the lower governments in Sweden on how to help with disasters and prevention. In 2007 Sweden implemented the Hyogo Framework for Action and has since continued funding Disaster Risk Reduction efforts. This funding has especially increased since 2017  

 

Continuing to fund and expand MSB throughout Sweden is a goal in the near future. There is a great hope that one day MSB can be universal in helping the Swedish people and providing a vote for any UN plan that helps Disaster Risk Reduction is without a doubt, something the Sweden government would support. When it comes to Disaster Risk Reduction, Sweden hopes to see the UN giving other countries support who need it and also hopes to see other countries setting up organizations or programs to help its people. Most of the UN, specifically nations like Finland and the European Region share these views with Sweden and continue supporting the education and action of Disaster Risk Reduction, and Sweden hopes to see their continuing support in committee

  • Sweden
  • Madaline Gerring

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Country: Kuwait

Committee: United Nations Development Programme

Topic: Disaster Risk Reduction

Delegate: Faith Schafer

School: Williamston High School

 

Natural disasters are a problem that affect countries and their citizens across the globe regardless of their location or economic situation. Despite all the advances in technology that have allowed people to detect and predict these disasters before they come, they still cause untold damage and can destroy the lives of the people in their path. Luckily, the global community has been very supportive in assisting the countries affected by these disasters, yet the United Nations Development Programme wishes to prevent the effects of disasters before they happen so there is not as much to fix after the disaster hits. 

Kuwait is not as affected by natural disasters as many other nations are, with their prime geographical location, flat landscape and moderate temperatures. Because of this, they are not prone to the same flooding, earthquakes and tsunamis that so plague other nations. Unfortunately, these natural disasters are very serious in other places, leading to the destruction of historic lands and the homes of millions of people. The few disasters that Kuwait experiences are heavy rain and sandstorms, which can cause problematic roadblocks and in some cases, destroy homes and civil buildings. Luckily, neither of these problems have caused problems large enough for Kuwait to struggle enough to require aid or out-of-country assistance. 

 

Kuwait suggests that the United Nations Development Programme collect a sort of “insurance” from all nations in order to create a fund to use for particularly nasty and costly disasters. That way, even Kuwait can get assistance if they experience a vicious sandstorm sometime in the near future. The countries that contribute 0.2 % of their GDP to the fund could use it in case of an emergency after petitioning the UNDP, and then if they are approved, the UNDP can figure out how to help rebuild after the disaster with preventative measures as the number one concern so that the effects of a future storm or disaster shall be lessened. Of course, disaster prevention even before a disaster hits is key and should be encouraged above all other factors- dams should be built in areas prone to flooding and countries should enforce the evacuation of their citizens when alerted of an upcoming tropical storm. Though it will cost a lot to try and prevent these disasters, it will eliminate the even heavier damage costs that will occur after a disaster the country was unprepared to face.

  • Kuwait
  • Faith Schafer

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SUBMITTED TO: United Nations Development Programme

TOPIC: Disaster Risk Reduction

In response to the issue, the delegation of Mexico is aware that 12,000-14,000 earthquakes occur each year based on the research of the National Earthquake Information Center of the United States, and roughly 9,600 people died in 2015 from earthquakes according to the Global Death Toll Report from Statista Research Department which has led to significant international economic implications and infrastructural devastations. Mexico encourages that UN Member States review the Mexican Seismic Alert System (SASMEX), an organization that works in tandem with The Center for Instrumentation and Seismic Registration (CIRES) to give citizens a 60-second warning to evacuate buildings, which currently contains 97 seismic wave sensors, primarily along the coast of Puerto Vallarta, mountains of Guerrero, and Oaxaca, but is expanding to the Isthmus and western Chiapas with goals to be implemented throughout Mexico. Furthermore, Mexico recommends these early warning systems (EWS) be broadened on an intercontinental level by expanding into zones of high risk with no current EWS in addition to utilizing the advantages of new technology such as instant messaging and phone alerts by sending warnings immediately upon receiving and mandating the protocol to follow (i.e. evacuation to established “safe zones”).  

Fully aware that 80% of the natural disasters of the past decade have been floods and storms, which also increases the probability for countries to experience a great economic loss (i.e. the California wildfires) and lead to intrastate conflicts according to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the delegation of Mexico encourages the International Community to integrate programs similar to The National Civil Protection System (SINAPROC), the main mechanism for interagency coordination of disaster efforts of Mexico which works with the National Center for Disaster Prevention (CENAPRED), an institution that links the gap between academic researchers and government by channeling research applications developed by university researchers. Mexico emphasizes that education on Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) readiness is essential for countries and their citizens to minimize casualties and advises that the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) More Education, Less Risk, a directive that provides education to K-12 schools about natural disaster preparedness, response, and rebuilding, work with establishments such as CENAPRED and other regional programs to expand the initiatives of the operation.

Noting that natural disasters caused a total of $1.5 trillion in damage worldwide between 2003 and 2013, according to a study by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the delegation of Mexico suggests that the International Body focus on funding programs such as Mexico’s FONDEN, an instrumental initiative for the coordination of intergovernmental and inter-institutional entities to quickly provide funds in response to natural disasters without compromising existing budgetary plans and approved public programs, which can benefit many nations when on a global scale. Working with different non-governmental organizations (NGOs) such as the Mennonite Central Committee and International Relief Teamsboth aim to generate funding for disaster-struck areas and rebuild homeswhich will help with more private infrastructure. Funding from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and/or the World Bank can be applied to countries that don’t have budgets set aside for the restoration of public infrastructure. The collaboration would parallel the three vital protocols of FONDEN which include the following: to finance emergency assistance to affected populations in the aftermath of a natural disaster,  to finance post-disaster rehabilitation and reconstruction of public infrastructure (including the restoration of certain components of the natural environment), and to finance the rehabilitation and reconstruction of low-income housing.

Deeply concerned that the World Bank estimated that 30 percent of Mexico’s GDP is considered to be at risk from three or more hazards and 71 percent is at risk from two or more hazards, Mexico endorsed the Hyogo Framework for Action 2005-2015 and currently upholds the standards of the Sendai Framework for DRR. In 2017, the delegation of Mexico committed to a National Network of the Private Sector Alliance for Disaster Resilient Societies (ARISE) where different business and company leaders work together in order to reduce disaster risks through better and informed decision-making and greater collaboration with the public sector. The delegation of Mexico looks forward to furthering collaboration with the other UN Member States of the UNDP in order to develop an efficient resolution regarding the topic.

  • Mexico
  • Katie McCarthy

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