13 Oct 2021

On 13 October, the global community celebrates the International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction, an opportunity to acknowledge the progress being made toward reducing disaster risk and losses in lives, livelihoods and health, while reminding the world that disaster risk is man-made.


13 October is the International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction and is an opportunity to acknowledge the progress being made toward reducing disaster risk and losses in lives, livelihoods and health. It is also a day to remind the world that disaster risk is man-made. The goal of the 2021 International day for disaster risk reduction is to provide an advocacy platform to highlight best practices and examples of international cooperation that have a positive impact on the lives of people who live in disaster-prone parts of the world, such as reducing the numbers of people affected by man-made and natural hazards.

2021 Theme

The theme for 2021 is “International cooperation for developing countries to reduce their disaster risk and disaster losses.”  Disasters impact low- and middle-income countries disproportionately, particularly in terms of mortality, numbers of people injured, displaced and homeless, economic losses (as a percentage of GDP) and damage to critical infrastructure. We cannot eradicate poverty and hunger if we don’t step up investments in disaster risk reduction. In addition, without real action on climate in the next 10 years, extreme weather events will be overwhelming, especially for developing countries. Thus, international cooperation for developing countries through development aid and capacity building is essential to boost disaster resilience in the face of extreme weather events and other natural and man-made hazards.

International cooperation the sixth of the Sendai Seven targets and reminds us that international cooperation to developing  countries need to be substantially enhanced through adequate and sustainable support to complement national actions in order to achieve the target by 2030. In summary, the seven targets focus on:

  1. Reducing disaster mortality
  2. Reducing the numbers of people disaster affected
  3. Reducing direct economic losses
  4. Reducing damage to critical infrastructure.
    The targets for achieving these reductions in disaster losses are:
  5. Increasing the number of national and local strategies for disaster risk reduction
  6. Enhancing international cooperation to developing countries
  7. Boosting the availability of, and access to, multi-hazard early warning systems

Environmental Disaster Risk Reduction

Disasters do not occur by accident – they are a result of the combined effects of hazards and vulnerable conditions. Disasters undermine hard-earned development gains and limit development achievements for future generations, with climate change expected to exacerbate the impacts of disasters globally. The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 (Sendai Framework) is the first major agreement of the post-2015 development agenda and provides Member States with concrete actions to protect development gains from the risk of disaster.

In the last decade, the role of ecosystems in disaster risk reduction (DRR) has received increased global attention. Sustainable ecosystem management for DRR is now recognized as a priority measure in the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction. Learn more about environmental disaster risk reduction (Eco-DRR), the Sendai Framework and the Geneva-based organizations active in this field in our update below.


Nature-based Solutions for Building Resilience

Geneva Nature-based Solutions Dialogues | IUCN & GEN | 11 October 2021

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