“Since we cannot prevent hazards, the main opportunity for reducing risk lies in tackling vulnerability and exposure,” the Disaster Risk Management Knowledge Centre report says. It is necessary to identify and tackle the underlying drivers of risks, it adds.
Scientists have endeavoured to understand and model risk better through new technologies to capture signals and monitoring threats.
The Disaster Risk Management Knowledge Centre has produced the report, “Science for Disaster Risk Management 2020: Acting today, protecting tomorrow.” More than 300 experts drafted it. It took them more than two years to complete the 600+-page report on disasters’ consequences on various assets at risk.
The report “aims to contribute to bridging the gap between scientific and practical knowledge with policy needs and actions, while advancing techniques and knowledge on disaster risk.”
The publication looks at various Disaster Risk Management (DRM) phases, focusing on a disaster’s immediate consequences and identifying what assets need to be protected.
The report also follows the recommendation of the previous Science for DRM report published in 2017.
The Science for Disaster Risk Management 2020 report moves from identifying problems to providing solutions sharing information on prevention, mitigation, adaptation strategies and approaches citing powerful case studies demonstrating what the DRM community has learned from disasters while identifying where the gaps lie.
All major international agreements and framework since 2015, the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, Agenda 2030, the Paris Agreement, and the 2016 Urban agenda are based on the same premise – to anticipate risk and manage and then evolved to a greater emphasis on prevention and preparedness.
The SDRM 2020 report is composed of five chapters.
Chapter 1 sets out the policy context at global and EU levels. It presents the major actors involved and their roles in advancing Disaster Risk Management.
Chapter 2 discusses integrating the DRM’s three phrases – risk assessment, risk management planning, and implementing risk management measures into policies and actions and the actors involved in the process.
Chapter 3 contains the report’s core content and addresses society’s five critical assets: population, economic sectors, critical infrastructures, ecosystem services, and cultural heritage. The authors identify which impacts commonly occurs after a disaster and review procedures for analysing these impacts.
Drawing from past experiences, chapter 3 illustrates the link between assets’ effects and characteristics and the lessons learned from managing risks after the event.
Five powerful case studies are also analysed and described in this chapter:
- the earthquakes in Central Italy from 2016 to 2017,
- the Fukushima Daiichi accident in 2011, the Eyjafjallajökull eruption in 2010,
- the Forest fires in Portugal in 2017, and
- the Covid-19 emergency.
Chapter 4 describes the interaction between different governance levels, stakeholders, and groups and how they connect before and after a disaster. This chapter also includes an overview of culture’s role in disaster management, focusing on disaster education and training.
Chapter 5 explores the potential collaboration between the EU, the DRM practices, and countries outside of the EU to share lessons learned, innovations to improve the DRM systems.
To access the report, click the link below:
Casajus Valles, A., Marin Ferrer, M., Poljanšek, K., Clark, I. (eds.), ‘Executive summary of the report Science for Disaster Risk Management 2020: acting today, protecting tomorrow’, EUR 30183 EN, Publications Office of the European Union, Luxembourg, 2020, ISBN 978-92-76-27150-5, doi:10.2760/919253, JRC114026.
Casajus Valles, A., Marin Ferrer, M., Poljanšek, K., Clark, I. (eds.), ‘Science for Disaster Risk Management 2020: acting today, protecting tomorrow’, EUR 30183 EN, Publications Office of the European Union, Luxembourg, 2020, ISBN 978-92-76-18181-1, doi:10.2760/438998, JRC114026.