‘Integrate climate and disaster risks into national policies’

Experts urge government to integrate climate and disaster risks into national policies

Sept. 13, 2014, 5:45 p.m. Published in Magazine Issue: Vol: 08 No. -7 September. 12- 2014 (Bhadra 27, 2071)

Against the backdrop of increasing instances of climate induced disasters in Nepal, climate experts from six different countries, including Nepal have called for integration of climate and disaster risks management into national development policies and programs.

“In their deliberations at the "Climate Risk Management (CRM) Experts Working Group Meeting" held on 8-9 September 2014, experts urged countries to have a national climate risk management (CRM) strategy in place to cope with effects of global warming,” said a press release issued by UNDP.

The meeting brought together over 40 national and international experts, six governments and UNDP practitioners from six countries working on the Integrated Climate Risk Management Programme (ICRMP). Funded by the Government of Sweden, ICRMP is being piloted in six countries namely Armenia, Honduras, Indonesia, Kenya, Nepal and Uganda.

The expert group meeting concluded with concrete recommendations, including calling for expanding coordination and collaboration among development partners, mainstreaming CRM into development planning, and adopting a time-bound action plan for UNDP Country offices to support development and implementation national CRM strategies.

Addressing the inaugural session of the workshop, Deputy Country Director of UNDP Nepal Sophie Kemkhadze said that the development progress needs to be not just achieved but also crucially protected in the face of climate vulnerabilities.

Speaking during the meeting, secretary of the Ministry of Science, Technology and Environment Dr. Krishna Chandra Paudel stressed on the need for planning for safer lives and livelihoods of millions of people to cope with the impact of climate change. He also called for urgent action citing the devastations from recent floods and landslides that took over 300 lives, displaced thousands of families, and incurred loss of property and infrastructure worth billions of rupees.

Assistant Country Director of UNDP Nepal Vijaya Prasad Singh emphasized that development efforts should also be assessed from a point of view of climate vulnerabilities. “We need to ensure that development works are reducing vulnerabilities, not adding new ones,” he said.

UNDP has already started a process of integrating Climate Risk Management into all its programming. The discussions at the meeting are expected to be helpful in developing national CRM strategies for six ICRM countries, including Nepal.



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