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Drought and Famine data in EM-DAT Regina Below, CRED Centre for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters - CRED.

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Presentation on theme: "Drought and Famine data in EM-DAT Regina Below, CRED Centre for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters - CRED."— Presentation transcript:

1 Drought and Famine data in EM-DAT Regina Below, CRED Centre for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters - CRED

2 5th TAG Meeting, WDC, 19/08/2005 EM-DAT: CONTENT EM-DAT contains core data on the occurrence and effects of: 822 (entries) drought 76 (entries) famine

3 5th TAG Meeting, WDC, 19/08/2005 Drought/Famine: Data problematic (1) Long-term and multi-country events (2) Definition of a drought/famine event (3) Gaps in data (4) Reliability of the data (5) No existing database on drought/famine (6) Lack of clear methodology to handle drought/famine entry (7) Famine problematic

4 5th TAG Meeting, WDC, 19/08/2005 (1) Long-term disasters and cumulative data Drought are usually multi-years event affecting more than 1 country (multi-countries) In previous EM-DAT database, each drought record was entered by year and by country e.g. Famine/Drought Ethiopia entered each year and data were cumulative. If the same drought affected other neighbour countries: New entry for each country with a new disaster number Alternative solution to avoid cumulative data: Divide the total number of killed/affected by the number of years the country was affected No consistent methodology applied to all events

5 5th TAG Meeting, WDC, 19/08/2005 Drought and famine in new EM-DAT Availability to handle multi-countries and multi- years events  1 entry by event with start and end date  No cumulative data anymore  Standard methodology for all drought/famine entries  Possibility to link to yearly figures*

6 5th TAG Meeting, WDC, 19/08/2005 (2) How to define an event? New structure of EM-DAT is based on 3 entry levels: Event, Country, and Sources level + validation process => making the data public No referent to determine what’s a drought event Lack of clear methodology to encode drought event

7 5th TAG Meeting, WDC, 19/08/2005 (3) Gaps in data (killed/affected) How get reliable data (deaths/affected) and reliable sources of information? Common sources used reports number of affected (= receiving food aid) but rarely/never reports the number of people killed by drought or its associated disasters (e.g. Famine) Or, at the opposite, figure on deaths are given but not on affected (e.g. North Korea famine)

8 5th TAG Meeting, WDC, 19/08/2005 (4) Reliable data Sources used: Situation reports of IFRC, OCHA, IRIN, WFP reports Other sources may be identified to help filling the data gaps Inconsistencies in figures due to lack of methodologies in source reporting

9 5th TAG Meeting, WDC, 19/08/2005 (5) No existing database on Drought/Famine No referent database to complete and/or validate EM-DAT data (DFO for floods, USGS for earthquakes, WHO for epidemics, etc. …)

10 5th TAG Meeting, WDC, 19/08/2005 (6) Lack of clear methodology in EM-DAT Lack of clear methodology to encode drought/famine events some inconsistencies in EM-DAT

11 5th TAG Meeting, WDC, 19/08/2005 (7) Famine Problematic Famine not a hazard but rather a particular kind of disaster outcome (consequence of different natural and non-natural factors) Difficulty to identify a predominate causal factors that lead to famine and there may be little connection to natural hazards events Proposed solution: reclassification into drought event or complex emergencies

12 5th TAG Meeting, WDC, 19/08/2005 Famine Drought/Complex emergencies? Examples: –Swaziland : Heavy storms + severe heat waves => food shortages => threat of famine –Madagascar /2003 : Drought + political instability => malnutrition => famine situation

13 5th TAG Meeting, WDC, 19/08/2005 Proposed classification Disaster type: Drought Disaster sub-types : None Origin: Causal factors (e.g. Lack of rain, El Nino) Associated disasters (2): Food shortages, Forest fires Disaster type: Complex Emergencies Disaster sub-types: None Origin: Causal factors (e.g. Political instability) Associated disasters (2): Famine


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