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Disaster Management – 02

In recent times, there have been
    • cases of railway accidents (Dussehra gathering on the railway tracks crushed by the trains in 2018),
    • fire accidents in hospitals due to negligence and non implementation of existing mandatory fire safety norms,
    • collapse of various infrastructure constructs like flyovers, metro tracks and residential buildings due to poor quality of construction, illegal addition of floors and recurring floods.
    • Stampede at large public gathering like Kumbh Mela caused by poor people management and lack of adequate infrastructure to monitor and manage large crowd gathering.
Stages in Disaster Management
  • Disaster Management efforts are geared towards disaster risk management.
  • Disaster Risk Management implies the systematic process of using administrative decisions, organisation, operational skills, and capacities to implement policies, strategies and coping capacities of the society and communities to lessen the impact of natural hazards and related environmental and technological disasters.
  • These comprise all forms all activities including structural and non- structural measures to avoid (prevention) or to limit (mitigation and preparedness) adverse effects of hazards.
  • There are three key stages of activities in disaster management:
  • Before a disaster: to reduce the potential for human, material, or environmental losses caused by hazards and to ensure that these losses are minimised when disaster strikes;
  1. During a disaster: to ensure that the needs and provisions of victims are met to alleviate and minimise suffering; and
  2. After a disaster: to achieve rapid and durable recovery which does not reproduce the original vulnerable conditions.
  • The different phases of disaster management are represented in the disaster cycle diagram.
Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR)
  • Disaster risk reduction is the concept and practice of reducing disaster risks through systematic efforts to analyse and reduce the causal factors of disasters.
  • Pre-Disaster risk reduction includes-Mitigation: To eliminate or reduce the impacts and risks of hazards through proactive measures taken before an emergency or disaster occurs.
    • Preparedness: To take steps to prepare and reduce the effects of disasters.
    • Post-Disaster risk reduction includes-Rescue: Providing warning, evacuation, search, rescue, providing immediate assistance.
    • Relife: To respond to communities who become victims of disaster, providing relief measures such as food packets, water, medicines, temporary accommodation, relief camps etc.
    • Recovery: This stage emphasises upon recovery of victims of disaster, recovery of damaged infrastructure and repair of the damages caused.
Disaster Risk Reduction in Sustainable Development Goals
  • Goal 1: Target 1.5, which relates to building the resilience of the poor, further strengthens the position of disaster risk reduction as a core development strategy for ending extreme poverty.
  • Goal 2: Target 2.4 supports the immediate need to advance actions in mainstreaming disaster risk reduction and climate adaptation into agriculture sector planning and investments in order to promote resilient livelihoods, food production and ecosystems.
  • Goal 3: Target 3.d, relates to strengthening early warning and risk reduction of national and global health risks presents an opportunity to further actions to promote resilient health.
  • Goal 4: Target 4.7 focusing on building and upgrading education facilities and promoting education for sustainable development, contribute significantly to resilience-building in the education sector.’
  • Goal 5: Target 6.6, which relates to protecting and restoring water-related ecosystems, will significantly contribute to strengthening the resilience of communities to water-related hazards.
  • Goal 6: Targets 9.1 related to developing sustainable and resilient infrastructure development are vital not only to protect existing infrastructure but also future infrastructure investments.
  • Goal 7: Action targets under this goal (11.1, 11.3, 11.4, 11.5, 11.b and 11.c) focusing on upgrading urban slums, integrated urban planning, reducing social and economic impacts of disaster risk, building the resilience of the urban poor, adopting and implementing urban policies in line with the Sendai Framework and building sustainable and resilient urban infrastructure, are strategic opportunities to ensure increased capacity to support cities, to protect current and future development prospects and to build safer, more resilient cities throughout the world.
  • Goal 8: Target actions under this goal, focusing on strengthening resilience and adaptive capacity, capacity building and integrating climate change measures into policies and plans, awareness raising on climate adaptation and early warning (Targets 13.1 to 13.3 and 13.a to 13.b) provide opportunities to strengthen the integration between disaster and climate resilience and to protect broader development paths at all levels.
  • Goal 9: Target action 14.2, focusing on the sustainable management and protection as well as strengthening resilience of marine and coastal ecosystems, can contribute to reducing disaster risk and increase in demand for healthy marine and coastal ecosystems.
  • Goal 10: Target actions 15.1 to 15.4 and 15.9, focus on managing and restoring forests, combating land degradation and desertification, conserving mountain ecosystems and their biodiversity and integrating ecosystem and biodiversity values into national and local planning, development processes, poverty reduction strategies.
  • These targets are also in line with the Sendai Framework focus on building environmental resilience through the inclusion of ecosystems in risk analysis and planning.
Challenges in Disaster Risk Reduction
  • There are insufficient levels of implementation for each monitored activity. For example, Disaster risk management plans or a risk sensitive building codes exist but they are not enforced because of a lack of government capacity or public awareness.
  • There is lack of local capacities to implement disaster risk management. Weak capacity at the local levels undermines the implementation Disaster preparedness plans.
  • Absence of integration of climate change into Disaster risk management plans.
  • There is divergence of obtaining political and economic commitments due to other competing needs and priorities such as poverty reduction, social welfare, education etc. require greater attention and funding.
  • Due to poor coordination between stakeholders, there is inadequate access with respect to risk assessment, monitoring, early warning, disaster response and other Disaster related activities.
  • Insufficient investment in building disaster resilient strategies, also private sector are least contributors in the share of investment.
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