Disasters & Humanitarian Relief

ECOSOC Humanitarian Segment Highlights Need for Increased Resilience [viewed]

21 July 2011: Valerie Amos, UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, opened the humanitarian segment of the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) underlining that global challenges, such as climate change, the food and energy crises, migration and environmental degradation, "continue to increase people's vulnerability and humanitarian needs.”

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St. Kitts and Nevis to Join UNESCO IOC [viewed]

21 July 2011: The UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has reported that St. Kitts and Nevis intends to become a member of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC).

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UN Security Council Debates Security Impacts of Climate Change [viewed]

20 July 2011: The UN Security Council held its second thematic debate on “Maintenance of international peace and security: the impact of climate change,” on 20 July 2011, in New York, US. Many delegates expressed concern that adverse effects of climate change could aggravate existing threats to international peace and security. While noting that the loss of territory in some States due to sea-level rise, particularly in small, low-lying island States, could have security implications, the Security Council could not agree that it had a role to play in this regard.

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ESCAP Emphasizes Governance and Water Management for Sustainable Water Resources [viewed]

5 July 2011: In a statement to the fourth Singapore International Water Week, Noeleen Heyzer, Executive Secretary, Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), emphasized that sound governance is crucial for the sustainable management of water resources that are threatened by pollution, natural disasters and climate change.

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UNESCO to Launch Course on Climate Change Education for Sustainable Development [viewed]

20 July 2011: The UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) will launch a Teacher Education Course on Climate Change Education for Sustainable Development (CCESD) in late 2011. The course is being developed for UNESCO by professors at Sustainability Frontiers, an international alliance of sustainability and global educators.

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UNCSD Secretary-General Outlines Eight Priorities for UNCSD [viewed]

13 July 2011: Sha Zukang, Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs and Secretary-General of the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD, or Rio+20), summarized his recent speech in Washington, DC, US, in a new post to his blog. He elaborated on eight “new and emerging challenges” that States and other stakeholders have highlighted for priority attention. The challenges include energy access, green jobs, sustainable agriculture, marine resources and financing.

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Event: Emergency Ministerial Meeting on the Drought Crisis in the Horn of Africa [viewed]

Organized by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), at the request of the French Government, this emergency Ministerial-level meeting will look to address possible measures to address the drought crisis in the Horn of Africa, which is affecting food security and food prices in the region.  

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Event: Security Council Debate on Climate Change and SIDS [viewed]

The UN Security Council will hold a debate on the issue of climate change and its security implications, with a special focus on the possible threat faced by small island and coastal States, due to rising sea levels. The debate follows the 2009 Report of the UN Secretary-General on "Climate change and its possible security implications." It will take place under the agenda item on "maintenance of international peace and security: impact of climate change."  

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Four East African Local Governments Commit to UN/ISDR Resilience Campaign [viewed]

14 July 2011: The UN International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UN/ISDR) has announced that four East African cities, Arusha and Moshi (Tanzania), Kisumu (Kenya), Bujumbura (Burundi), have joined the UN disaster reduction campaign “Making Cities Resilient: My City Is Getting Ready!”

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UNESCO, Japan Launch Project on Flood Forecasting in Pakistan [viewed]

11 July 2011: In cooperation with the Government of Japan, the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) launched a project aimed at upgrading the flood forecasting and early warning systems of Pakistan, and to conduct risk mapping of flood plains along the Indus River.

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