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Disaster Risk Reduction as a sustainable adaptation to climate change 1 Mark Keim, M.D. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 1 Keim M. Building Human.

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Presentation on theme: "Disaster Risk Reduction as a sustainable adaptation to climate change 1 Mark Keim, M.D. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 1 Keim M. Building Human."— Presentation transcript:

1 Disaster Risk Reduction as a sustainable adaptation to climate change 1 Mark Keim, M.D. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 1 Keim M. Building Human Resilience. Am J Prev Med 2008;35(5): th International Conference on Environmental and Occupational Medicine 7-10 April 2010

2 Climate Change Definition Definition Any changing climate, over time, whether due to natural variability or as a result of human activity 2Any changing climate, over time, whether due to natural variability or as a result of human activity 2 Warming of the climate system is unequivocal 3Warming of the climate system is unequivocal 3 2 IPCC Working Group II, Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability, IPCC Working Group I, The Physical science Basis, 2007

3 Global climate change will increase the probability of extreme weather events 2 High precipitation disasters High precipitation disasters StormsStorms FloodsFloods LandslidesLandslides Low precipitation disasters Low precipitation disasters Heat Drought Wildfire 2 IPCC Working Group II, Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability,

4 Definition of Disasters A serious disruption of the functioning of a community or a society causing widespread human, material, economic or environmental losses which exceed the ability of the affected community or society to cope using its own resources. 5 5 UNISDR. (2009). Terminology on Disaster Risk Reduction. Available at:

5 Future trends in extreme weather disasters 2 Drought Drought WildfiresWildfires Crop failureCrop failure Heavy precipitation Heavy precipitation Inland floodingInland flooding LandslidesLandslides Cyclones Cyclones Coastal storm surgeCoastal storm surge Sea level rise Sea level rise Coastal floodingCoastal flooding Crop failureCrop failure Population displacementPopulation displacement 2 IPCC Working Group II, Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability,

6 The public health impact of extreme weather events Between , climate related hazards account for 90% of all global disasters 6 Between , climate related hazards account for 90% of all global disasters 6 Hydrologic MeteorologicalHydrologic Meteorological The worlds poor are disproportionately affected 7 The worlds poor are disproportionately affected 7 6 Center for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters (CRED) 7 Munich Re Group. Annual Review Natural Catastrophes. Munich Re Group,

7 Future trends in health 2 Increased malnutrition Increased malnutrition Increased disaster deaths due to Increased disaster deaths due to Heat waves Heat waves Floods Floods Storms Storms Wildfires Wildfires Droughts Droughts Increased cardio- respiratory diseases Increased cardio- respiratory diseases Altered distribution of infectious disease vectors Altered distribution of infectious disease vectors 2 IPCC Working Group II, Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability,

8 The most vulnerable Small Island Developing States 8 Small Island Developing States 8 Coastal communities that are: 2 Coastal communities that are: 2 PoorPoor Dependent upon local foodDependent upon local food Dependent upon local waterDependent upon local water 2 IPCC Working Group II, Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability, Ministerial Conference on Environment and Development in Asia-Pacific,

9 Disasters are increasing worldwide 9 Due to increasing vulnerability of populations at risk Due to increasing vulnerability of populations at risk Interventions must therefore address the causes of vulnerability not merely the response Interventions must therefore address the causes of vulnerability not merely the response 9 Noji E, The Nature of Disaster. In Public health consequences of disasters. In Noji E, Ed., Oxford University press. 1997

10 What is a hazard? A threatening event or potentially damaging phenomenon A threatening event or potentially damaging phenomenon

11 What is human vulnerability? Susceptibility to physical or emotional injury Susceptibility to physical or emotional injury Factors of human vulnerability Factors of human vulnerability Exposure to the hazardExposure to the hazard Susceptibility to harmSusceptibility to harm Resilience to cope with or recover from lossesResilience to cope with or recover from losses

12 Vulnerability to Natural Disasters 95% of natural disaster deaths occur among 66% of the poorest countries 10 95% of natural disaster deaths occur among 66% of the poorest countries Anderson M, Managing Natural Disasters and the Environment. World Bank Washington, DC. 1991

13 An evolution in approach From Response and Relief From Response and Relief To Risk Management To Risk Management

14 Crisis management measures are Delivered post- impact Least cost-effective Nationally and internationally based Non-sustainable Source: Keim M. Building human resilience. Am J Prev Med 2008;35(5): Disaster Risk Management Cycle Risk reduction measures are Delivered pre- impact Most cost- effective Community based Sustainable

15 Reducing human vulnerability as an adaptation of climate change Climate change adaptation policies focus on reducing vulnerability Climate change adaptation policies focus on reducing vulnerability Reducing human vulnerability is a key aspect of reducing climate change risk 11 Reducing human vulnerability is a key aspect of reducing climate change risk Schipper L, Pelling M. Disaster risk, climate change and international development. Disasters 2006;30:19-38

16 Vulnerability reduction: reducing exposures Floodplain management Floodplain management Dams, levees, weirsDams, levees, weirs Population protection measures Population protection measures EvacuationEvacuation Mass careMass care Land use planning and regulation Land use planning and regulation

17 Vulnerability reduction: reducing susceptibility Health promotion Health promotion Health care Health care Poverty reduction Poverty reduction Community planning Community planning

18 Human resilience as a means for vulnerability reduction Resilience Resilience The ability to cope with and recover from disastersThe ability to cope with and recover from disasters Resilience is comprised of: Resilience is comprised of: Absorptive capacityAbsorptive capacity Organizational capacityOrganizational capacity Adaptive capacityAdaptive capacity Human behaviors that increase disaster resilience Human behaviors that increase disaster resilience Preparedness Response Recovery

19 Sustainable development and climate change 14 Sustainable development reduces vulnerability to climate change Sustainable development reduces vulnerability to climate change Enhances adaptive capacityEnhances adaptive capacity Increases resilienceIncreases resilience Climate change could impede nations abilities to achieve sustainable development Climate change could impede nations abilities to achieve sustainable development Increases exposure to hazards Erodes adaptive capacity 14 United Nations "Report of the World Commission on Environment and Development." General Assembly Resolution 42/187, 11 December

20 Thank you


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