Natural Hazards and Disasters

Extract from the Mauritius Strategy (Chapter II , Para 21)

21. Small island developing States are located among the most vulnerable regions in the world in relation to the intensity and frequency of natural and environmental disasters and their increasing impact, and face disproportionately high economic, social and environmental consequences. The tragic impacts of the 26 December 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami and the recent hurricane/cyclone/typhoon seasons in the Caribbean and Pacific highlight their vulnerability. Small island developing States have undertaken to strengthen their respective national frameworks for more effective disaster management and are committed, with the necessary support of the international community, to:

(a) Strengthening the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction and related small island developing States regional mechanisms as facilities to improve national disaster mitigation, preparedness and early warning capacity, increase public awareness about disaster reduction, stimulate interdisciplinary and intersectoral partnerships, and support the mainstreaming of risk management into the national planning process;

(b) Using such opportunities as the 10-year review of the Yokohama Strategy for a Safer World: Guidelines for Natural Disaster Prevention, Preparedness and Mitigation and its Plan of Action, including the programme outcome for 2005-2015 of the World Conference on Disaster Reduction, to be held in Kobe, Japan, in January 2005, to consider the specific concerns of small island developing States, including issues relating to insurance and reinsurance arrangements for small island developing States;

(c) Augmenting the capacity of small island developing States to predict and respond to emergency situations, including those affecting human settlements, stemming from natural and environmental disasters.

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