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UNISDR’s DRR Assessment Calls on Private Sector to Reduce Risk

UNISDR15 May 2013: The UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) has released the third edition of the UN Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR). This edition is subtitled “From Shared Risk to Shared Value: The Business Case for DRR,” and seeks to provide a resource for understanding and analyzing current and future global disaster risk.

Marking the release of the report, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon explained that economic losses from disasters are currently "out of control" and called for partnership with the private sector, noting it is "responsible for 70% to 85% of all investment worldwide in new buildings, industry and small to medium sized enterprises (SMEs).”

The report includes reviews of national disaster loss databases in 40 countries, as well as survey responses from 1,300 SMEs in disaster-prone locations, a review of risk management in 14 major corporations, and the presentation of a new global risk model.

According to UNISDR, the report focuses on three investment areas: urban development, agribusiness, and coastal tourism. The report identifies natural capital risk as key due to climate change, land degradation and the overexploitation of water resources. It also notes that land degradation due to intensive agriculture, overgrazing, salinization, deforestation and the breakdown of traditional agro-ecological systems, as a key driver of agricultural drought risk. The report also underscores that climate change will magnify disaster risk in small-island developing States (SIDS). [UNISDR Webpage on the Report] [UNISDR Press Release] [GAR 2013 Website] [Publication: 2013 GAR]