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IAS Foundation 2023-24, Batch Starts: 27th July

International Conference on Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (ICDRI)

  • Category
    Disaster Management
  • Published
    17th May, 2022

Context

Recently, the Prime Minister addressed the inaugural session of 4th edition of International Conference on Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (ICDRI) through video conference.

Background

  • Disasters triggered by natural hazards threaten the long-term sustainability of development in Asia and the Pacific.
  • Countries across the region face significant disaster and climate risk.
    • From 2012 to 2021 alone, infrastructure failure due to insufficient resilience contributed to about 80,729 disaster-related fatalities.
  • Infrastructure, homes, and businesses were damaged, with indirect economic and social consequences for jobs, productivity, and service provision.
  • The escalation in disaster losses underscores the urgency of addressing disaster risk adequately when planning and designing infrastructure in developing member countries (DMCs) of the Asian Development Bank (ADB).

Disasters in India

  • India is one of the world’s most disaster-prone countries, as it is exposed to many natural hazards including floods, cyclones, droughts, and earthquakes.
  • India started reorganizing its domestic DM system after a succession of major disasters, including the 1999 Super Cyclone Odisha (formerly known as Orissa), 2001 Gujarat earthquake, and 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami.
  • The aftermath of these devastating disasters led India to enact the DM Act in 2005, adopt the National Policy on DM in 2009, and develop the National DM Plan in 2016.

Analysis

What is ‘Infrastructure Resilience’?

  • Infrastructure resilience is the ability of infrastructure systems to resist, absorb, accommodate, and recover from hazards to which they are exposed—and to mitigate the impact of such events on the users served by the systems.
  • Resilience is a property of infrastructure systems that includes not only the performance of individual assets but also their collective role in providing essential services to users.

What are the benefits of disaster resilience investment?

  • The avoidance of damage and loss
  • reduce damage to infrastructure and other strategic assets
  • reduce economic losses and disruptions
  • Reduced risks can unlock economic development
  • Motivating long-term planning by reducing the risk of disruptive disaster impact across longer time horizons
  • In many instances, interventions made to improve resilience also generate co-benefits, for example, improvements in gender equality or enhancements in natural capital.

What is the need to focus towards managing disasters?

  • Disaster risks are set to increase further over the coming years and decades, as both climate and population patterns change.
  • According to the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), heavy precipitation events are very likely to intensify and become more frequent with increased global warming (IPCC 2021).
  • Similarly, the risk from other hazards, including tropical cyclones and coastal flooding, is expected to increase as temperatures continue to rise.
  • In addition to this increased risk of acute disasters, climate change is projected to cause significant long-term stresses from chronic hazards, such as rising sea levels, heat waves, and drought.
  • Sea level rise is particularly relevant to many low-lying islands in the Pacific, as well as to Asian coastal regions.
  • Insufficiently risk-informed development, unplanned urbanization, and population growth, resulting in an increase in the number of people and the value of economic activity in hazard-exposed areas, will further heighten the risks from disasters.

What measures are required?

  • Effective investment in resilient infrastructure can support wider social and economic resilience.
  • Reliable infrastructure services can greatly reduce the impact of disasters on economies and communities, supporting relief and recovery efforts and the provision of essential services to vulnerable groups.

International Conference on Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (ICDRI):

  • The International Conference on Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (ICDRI) is the annual conference of the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI).
  • It brings together member countries, organizations and institutions to strengthen the global discourse on disaster and climate resilient infrastructure.
  • In 2018 and 2019, the first and second International Workshop on Disaster Resilient Infrastructure took place in New Delhi, India. ICDRI 2021 was hosted virtually.
  • The fourth edition of ICDRI is being organized in partnership with the United States Government.

ICDRI2022:

  • ICDRI2022 will engage with decision-makers, practitioners and communities from across the world to discuss challenges, identify good practices, develop collaboration and galvanize concrete actions.
  • It will include multi-sectoral and multi-country discussions around infrastructure transitions, risk governance and finance, innovation and human-centered, ecologically sensitive design for building resilience.

Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI):

  • India initiated CDRI as a global partnership of 27 countries in 2019.
  • It launched a programme to help small island states develop resilience to climate crisis at the 2021 UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) in Glasgow in November.
  • The Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI) is a partnership of national governments, UN agencies and programmes, multilateral development banks and financing mechanisms, the private sector, and knowledge institutions.
  • It aims to promote the resilience of new and existing infrastructure systemsto climate and disaster risks in support of sustainable development.
  • CDRI promotes rapid development of resilient infrastructureto respond to the Sustainable Development Goals’ imperatives of expanding universal access to basic services, enabling prosperity and decent work.
  • The following are CDRI’s strategic priorities:
    • Technical Support and Capacity-building:This includes disaster response and recovery support; innovation, institutional and community capacity-building assistance; and standards and certification.
    • Research and Knowledge Management:This includes collaborative research; global flagship reports; and a global database of infrastructure and sector resilience.
    • Advocacy and Partnerships:This includes global events and initiatives; marketplace of knowledge financing and implementation agencies; and dissemination of knowledge products.
  • The CDRI Secretariat is based in New Delhi, India.
  • Members:30 nations and 8 organisations.
  • Since 2015, the international community’s commitment to advancing disaster-resilient infrastructure has been reflected in
    • Sustainable Development Goal 9 (build resilient infrastructure, promote sustainable industrialization, and foster innovation)
    • global target D of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction (substantially reduce disaster damage to critical infrastructure and disruption of basic services)
    • Principles for Quality Infrastructure Investment of the Group of Twenty (G20) countries, among others.

Practice Question

Q1. Discuss the significance of the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI) in achieving the sustainable development goal of resilient and inclusive infrastructure.

 Q2. “According to the report by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), India lost $87 billion in a year due to disasters such as cyclones, floods and droughts as global warming starts impacting lives and property.” In light of this statement, discuss the need to build disaster resilient infrastructure. How is India preparing to develop a disaster resilient infrastructure?

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