Friday, August 21, 2009

Geosciences in action: Reducing Human Losses to Natural Hazards

Prominent speakers of the special session devoted to the subject during the GEO V Plenary held in Bucarest last November, including the director of the Scripps Institute, La Jolla. Image: HUNAGI Visuals resource, 2008
From our daily mail. Claudia Mengelt, Ph.D., Senior Program Officer , Ocean Studies Board , The National Academies (500 Fifth Street, NW Washington, D.C. 20001) wrote yesterday:
"Please forward this message to your colleagues and consider submitting your abstracts to the following session:
NH06: Reducing Human Losses to Natural Hazards
Sponsor: Natural Hazards
CoSponsor: Public Affairs
Brian F Atwater ( U.S. Geological Survey at Dept. of Earth and Space Sciences, University of Washington
John Orcutt ( Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California San Diego
Kevin T M Johnson ( Dept. of Geology and Geophysics, University of Hawaii at Manoa
Ester Sztein ( Board on International Scientific Organizations, National Academy of Sciences
Description: Worldwide losses to floods, droughts, landslides, earthquakes, and tsunamis depend to a large extent on population density, standard of living, governance, and preservation of natural environments, as shown most recently in the 2009 report from the UN’s International Strategy for Disaster Reduction Secretariat. The losses mount despite advances in science and engineering that have improved the detection, forecasting, and mitigation of natural hazards.
This special session provides a forum on how geophysics, in the broad sense of AGU’s vision, succeeds and fails in disaster reduction. Assessments from social and behavioral sciences are encouraged, as are presentations on geophysics and engineering that focus on applications to loss reduction."

Further readings:
  1. International Conference on ‘Building a Local Government Alliance for Disaster Risk Reduction’, 11-13 August, Incheon, Republic of Korea

    The international conference on ‘Building a Local Government Alliance for Disaster Risk Reduction’ is co-organized by Incheon Metropolitan City and UNISDR and will bring together 200 participants.
    The gathering will address common concerns and challenges faced by local governments in preventing disasters and minimizing their impacts. Moreover, it will help to frame the scope and objectives of the UNISDR’s next World Disaster Reduction Campaign focusing on “Safer Cities”.
    Plenary sessions will set the stage and will stimulate a constructive debate on the implementation of the Hyogo Framework for Action at the local level. Thematic sessions will complement the plenaries, allowing participants to share views, expertise and experience on the following topics in an interactive manner:
    1) Making Cities Safer – Mobilizing Local Actions toward Urban Disaster Risk Reduction
    2) Localizing the Hyogo Framework for Action
    3) Capacity Building for Local Governments in Disaster Risk Reduction
    4) Information and Communication Technology for Disaster Risk Reduction
    More information:

  2. IPCC Special Report 'Managing the risks of extreme events..
  3. Global assessment report on disaster risk reduction (2009)

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