All development sectors must imbibe the principles of disaster risk management
Development and Disasters are two sides of a coin. While a planned development can reduce the risks of disasters, the absence of proper planning can aggravate them. It is, therefore, essential to imbibe disaster risk reduction approach in all development schemes. Development should focus on reducing disaster risks and not create them.
Risk coverage must include all, starting from poor households to SMEs to multi-national corporations to nation states
Disasters result in loss of lives and damages to properties and assets. Those who survive face the challenges of their rehabilitation. This applies to all from poor households to SMEs to multi-nationals.
It is necessary to think big and innovatively to widen the risk insurance cover. Some bold steps have been taken to ensure financial inclusion and risk insurance for the poorest.
Government has some schemes having risk coverage in consideration which include Jan Dhan Yojana, Suraksha Bima Yojana, Fasal Bima Yojana (crop insurance) etc.
There is a need for:
Development of disaster insurance mechanisms for home-owners in disaster prone area
Development of parametric insurance for weather and climate related disasters
Develop insurance products to cover major infrastructure projects
Women’s leadership and greater involvement should be central to disaster risk management
It is necessary to encourage greater involvement and leadership of women in disaster risk management to support special needs of women affected by disasters. Women are generally seen as vulnerable to disasters. But women can play an important role in disaster risk reduction at the household, society, community and beyond. We need large number of women volunteers, engineers, masons and building artisans to participate in post-disaster reconstruction and promote women self-help groups which can assist in livelihood recovery. There is a need to include women in NDRF and SDRF, and to train elected women representatives at the local level under development.
Invest in risk mapping globally to improve global understanding of Nature and disaster risks
Disasters know no boundary. Many natural hazards impact across countries, so there is a need for better understanding of such risks at global level. With a shared understanding of the nature and severity of disaster risks globally, their impacts can be mitigated with better planning and preparedness. This requires undertaking multi-hazard risk assessments and developing maps for all major hazards in a standardized format to facilitate disaster risk reduction.
Leverage technology to enhance the efficiency of disaster risk management efforts
Efforts must be made to leverage technology to enhance the efficiency of our disaster risk management efforts. This requires use of technology in resource planning, e.g., India Disaster Resources Network (IDRN), creation of e-platform to map expertise and resources on highly specialized aspects of disaster response and to increase the efficacy of early warning systems for all major hazards through the application of technology.
Develop a network of universities to work on disaster-related issues
It will be helpful to develop a network of universities and academic institutions to work on disaster-related aspects. As part of this network, different universities could specialize in multi-disciplinary research on disaster issues most relevant to them.
Utilise the opportunities provided by social media and mobile technologies for disaster risk reduction
Utilize the opportunities provided by social media and mobile technologies to develop a social media strategy for Disaster Risk Management in the country. Social media is transforming disaster response. It is helping response agencies in quickly organizing themselves and enabling citizens to connect more easily with authorities.
Build on local capacity and initiative to enhance disaster risk reduction
Disaster management must build on local capabilities and initiatives. The task of disaster risk management, particularly in rapidly growing economies, is so huge that formal institutions of the state can at best be instrumental in creating the enabling conditions. Specific actions have to be designed and implemented locally. Such efforts reduce risk and create opportunities for local development and sustainable livelihoods. Localization of disaster risk reduction will also ensure that good use is made of the traditional best practices and indigenous knowledge.
Make use of every opportunity to learn from disasters and, to achieve that, there must be studies on the lessons after every disaster
Ensure that the opportunity to learn from a disaster is not wasted. After every disaster there is a need to undertake research studies to understand the best practices and learn lessons to improve the policy and disaster governance.
Bring about greater cohesion in international response to disasters
Disasters’ impacts are huge and so are the needs to be prepared for and respond strategically. Across the globe, countries face disasters similar in nature and sometimes across the countries. It requires coordinated and unified response by affected countries. Pre-disaster planning and preparedness can result in effective and timely response, hence it is important to bring about greater cohesion in international response to disasters. International forums and protocols should be used in addressing disaster risks for effective and coordinated response.