Southeast Asian countries enhance capacity to anticipate climate related hazards

Source(s): Association of South East Asian Nations

BALI, 26 May 2022 – The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) launched the Framework on Anticipatory Action in Disaster Management for a more comprehensive and innovative approach in disaster anticipation.

The framework, introduced at the side-lines of the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction (GPDRR) held in Nusa Dua, Bali, Indonesia, aims to inspire governments and partners across the globe to champion coherence, collaboration and forward vision for a disaster-resilient ASEAN Community and beyond.

“Southeast Asian countries are moving towards mechanisms for disaster preparedness and response that can operate based on the ‘One ASEAN One Response’ principles of speed, scale and solidarity,” said Tianchai Chukittiwibul, Deputy Director General of the Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation of Thailand and Chair of the ASEAN Committee on Disaster Management.

Climate related hazards such as floods, typhoons, droughts, heat or cold waves and storm surges have affected over 57 million people in Asia Pacific, including Southeast Asia. Not only threatening lives of the most at-risk populations, these hazards also have ripple effects on community livelihoods, which can strip away income and food security. Over the last 50 years, Asia alone has accounted for half of the world’s economic losses from natural disasters, amounting to more than US$ 1.3 trillion.

ASEAN acknowledges that climate change continues to increase the occurrence and intensity of extreme hazard, thus anticipatory action is fast becoming a critical approach in comprehensive disaster risk management. Existing ASEAN policies and frameworks, in particular the ASEAN Agreement on Disaster Management and Emergency Response Work Programme 2021–2025, provides concrete entry points for advancing anticipatory action and offer opportunities for further alignment and integration within disaster risk management systems.

Also present at the launching event, Shukri Ahmed, Deputy Director of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) Office of Emergencies and Resilience, congratulated and commended ASEAN for the significant progress in building the region’s disaster management capacity. He was also grateful for the support from the European Union for this important initiative.

“ASEAN, being one of the most productive agricultural baskets in the world, is also the best suited to showcase the importance of anticipatory action for livelihood interventions.  Natural disasters can have ripple effects on livelihoods, which can strip away income and food security. Taking anticipatory actions will ensure countries are able to protect livelihoods and save lives,” said Ahmed.

He added that FAO stands ready to support Southeast Asian countries by working together towards a resilient ASEAN Community.

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