Disaster Risk Management

ADB's proactive disaster risk management program aims to reduce country vulnerabilities to risks and responds faster to impacts.

Natural hazards continue to cause significant loss of life in Asia and the Pacific, with 1.7 million hazard-related deaths being recorded from 1970-2010.

So too, the direct physical losses from disasters are not only following a steady upward path, but are also rising more rapidly than regional GDP. However, behind each disaster there are causal factors underlying the losses and, by implication, measures that could be taken to avoid a repeat event.

ADB stands ready to support countries hit by natural disasters with immediate relief assistance and post-disaster rehabilitation and reconstruction help, as it is doing in the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan, known in the Philippines as Typhoon Yolanda. However, ADB also believes that rising disaster losses and related setbacks in poverty reduction and development are not inevitable. Investments in disaster resilience can reduce losses, contributing to sustained economic growth, the achievement of poverty reduction, and enhanced natural resources management.

These investments have the most far-reaching effect if they are undertaken in the context of wider development and are carefully integrated into the development process. Investing in resilience also requires active cooperation between governments, the private sector, civil society, and the international community.

Did you know

  • Disasters continue to erode development gains throughout Asia and the Pacific, a region that generates one quarter of the world's GDP.
  • Asia and the Pacific account for 42% of global economic losses and 85% of deaths as a result of natural hazard impacts.
  • On average $15 billion is required each year to restore infrastructure and economic momentum in Asian countries affected by disasters.

Keys to reducing risks

Reduce Exposure Early Warning Strengthen Resilience
  • Accelerate infrastructure improvements to keep up with ballooning urban population.
  • Provide realistic alternatives to those living in high-risk areas.
  • Protect and restore ecosystems that buffer the impact of natural hazards
  • Ensure warnings reach individuals.
  • Develop flexible systems ranging from global monitoring, regional, and national preparation to local emergency action.
  • Customize wording of warnings and methods used for local communities.
  • Expand income options in rural areas, reducing reliance on a single crop.
  • Encourage regional cooperation that helps stricken economies recover.
  • Protect and restore ecosystems that provide and enhance the livelihood of rural populations.

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