G20 DRR WG Side event on enhancing disaster resilient infrastructure governance
Chennai, 24 July, 2023: Resilient infrastructure is essential for sustainable development, climate change adaptation, and economic growth in all countries. Only by ensuring that infrastructure systems are resilient to current and emerging disaster and climate change risks can countries ensure the safety of communities and the continuation of the vital services that support economies.
Infrastructure resilience is one of the priorities of the G20 Disaster Risk Reduction Working Group which targets increased commitment towards making infrastructure systems disaster and climate resilient. The United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR) and the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI) organized a side event at the margins of the third working group meeting in Chennai, bringing together experts from the private sector and government to discuss how the G20 can turn commitments into actions and to share their own experiences.
Kamal Kishore, Chair DRR WG of G20 and Member, NDMA, India and Mami Mizutori, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Disaster Risk Reduction started off the event with opening remarks and moderated the panel discussion.
Global methodology for legislative and national review of infrastructure resilience
To strengthen governance for infrastructure resilience, UNDRR and CDRI are working together to develop a methodology that provides guidelines and a clearly defined approach for conducting reviews of national policies, strategies and legislation on critical infrastructure resilience. It integrates UNDRR’s Principles for Resilient Infrastructure to provide a comprehensive framework of principles, key actions, and guidelines to enhance the resilience of critical infrastructure, as well as an approach to stress testing critical infrastructure to identify vulnerabilities and inter-dependencies between infrastructure assets and systems.
The methodology and approach will be applicable and scalable for all countries. Anwar Baksh from the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Management in Trinidad and Tobago joined the panel to share his experience in applying UNDRR’s Principles for Resilient Infrastructure and stress testing methodology and how this approach can help countries in strengthening governance for infrastructure resilience.
Equipping Small Island Development States with tools, knowledge and partnership for resilient infrastructure
Small Island Development States (SIDS) are more vulnerable to climate and disaster risks. CDRI Infrastructure for Resilient Island States (IRIS) initiative pays particular attention to SIDS, recognizing that enhancing resilience of infrastructure in SIDS requires technical support and capacity strengthening for informed decision-making, locally relevant technical knowledge and fit-for-purpose processes and tools.
Mr Dhanandjay Kawol, Senior Chief Executive, Ministry of Local Government and Disaster Risk Management of Mauritius shared his perspective on the unique challenges that SIDS face in building resilient infrastructure and how the IRIS platform has helped them to gain knowledge in this area.
Moving forward into the Brazil Presidency
One of the main outcomes of this side event is to deliberate on how to take forward actions related to resilient infrastructure in the DRR Working Group’s roadmap and draft communique. These outcomes will pave the path for the work of the G20 Working Group on DRR into the Brazilian Presidency for 2024.
Ms. Savina Carluccio, Executive Director of International Coalition for Sustainable Infrastructure and Mr. George Karagiannis, Engineering Leadership Group Director of Resilience First spoke on the urgent policy and regulatory changes needed for enhancing infrastructure resilience and the actions required by the G20 countries to support this.