UNISDR and partners plan for major advance in global disaster risk modelling

Source(s): United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction

GENEVA, 14 November 2011 – The Special Representative of the UN Secretary General for Disaster Risk Reduction, Margareta Wahlström, today announced that the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, UNISDR, is to work with its partners over the next four years on developing a global disaster risk model which will provide the best information available on likely economic losses as climate change kicks in.

Wahlström said: “There is no doubt that UNISDR’s global risk model first published in the 2009 Global Assessment Report has broken new ground in persuading the public and private sector of the economic and political imperative for investing in disaster risk reduction. It models average annual mortality and economic loss risk for tropical cyclones, floods, landslides, earthquakes and exposure for tsunamis and drought. The model was updated this year to explore risk trends over time for geographic and economic regions.

“New versions will now be developed and published progressively over the next four years. All the hazard models will be improved and other hazards such as volcanoes, wildfires and agricultural droughts will be progressively included.”

The project will be led by Andrew Maskrey, Coordinator, Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction, UNISDR, and was agreed at a scoping meeting held as part of the Integrated Research on Disaster Risk (IRDR) conference in Beijing, China, earlier this month.

Maskrey said: “The risk analysis will use probabilistic modelling techniques to provide enhanced estimations of economic loss risks for different return periods. Previous work on resilience will also be enhanced using system modelling.”

Partners who participated in the global risk analysis scoping meeting, or who are engaged in the project, include: the Arab Center for the Studies of Arid Zones and Dry Lands (ACSAD); Centro Internacional de Metodos Numericos en Ingenieria (CIMNE); Climate Interactive; Dartmouth Flood Observatory (DFO); Consorcio Evaluation de Riesgos Naturales – America Latina (ERN–AL); Geoscience Australia (GA); the Global Earthquake Model (GEM Foundation); International Centre on Environmental Monitoring (CIMA Foundation); Integrated Research on Disaster Risk (IRDR); International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA); Latin American Social Science Faculty (FLACSO); Norwegian Geotechnical Institute (NGI); Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT); United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP-GRID); United Nations University (UNU); United States National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the United States National Drought Mitigation Center (NDMC).

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