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Regional Platform for DRR in the Americas Adopts Declaration

29 November 2012: The Third Session of the Regional Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction in the Americas has adopted a "Communiqué of Santiago: Investing for Resilience," which calls for stepping up efforts to fully implement mechanisms and key actions to accelerate implementation of the Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA) for disaster risk reduction (DRR).

Organized by the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) and the Organization for American States (OAS) and hosted by Chile's National Emergency Office, the Regional Platform was held from 26-28 November 2012 in Santiago, Chile and attended by over 400 representatives from governments, international organizations, donor agencies and civil society organizations (CSOs) from 43 countries and territories.

The Communiqué calls on all parties to "redouble efforts" to pursue the full implementation of policies, strategies, plans, programs and projects to increase the resilience of nations and communities to disaster risks and their adaptation to the challenges of climate change and variability. Participants also resolved to implement related plans and strategies agreed at the regional level by the OAS and at the subregional level by Central America's CEPREDENAC, the Caribbean's CDEMA, the Andean Community's CAPRADE and the Common Market of the South's (MERCOSUR) REHU.

The Communiqué recommends that, within the framework of development planning and management, governments adopt DRR and climate adaptation policies that, inter alia: guarantee financing of approved risk management initiatives; systematically register and analyze losses and damages, and promote the using such data in policy reviews and planning; identify, systematize and disseminate best practices and lessons learned; and include gender focus and cultural diversity in DRR plans and policies.

Referencing Rio+20's outcome document, participants called for the urgent integration of risk reduction and climate adaptation in sustainable development policies. Within such policies, they urged procedures and instruments that promote, inter alia: the use of indicators to measure the impact of measures taken; financial instruments and economic incentives and a specific budget devoted to DRR, including risks associated with climate change, regarding investments in infrastructure and basic services; and joint work by various levels of government on risk management and climate adaptation.

Regarding a post-HFA DRR framework, the Communiqué invites legislators, regulators and CSOs to: participate in the consultative process for the post-2015 regime; strengthen and develop education, scientific research and technological development programs in risk reduction and increasing resilience; consolidate the Regional Platform's Advisory Council to promote, guide and track relevant commitments and prepare for future sessions of the Platform; and strengthen UNISDR that it can support and follow the consultative process toward creating the post-2015 framework. [UNISDR Press Release] [Communiqué of Santiago]