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Activity Report

23 - 29 December 2013, Maldives

IMG_6501.JPGSince 2009, ADRC has initiated a pilot project of DRR Policy Peer Review with the aim of developing DRR capacity of ADRC member countries by sharing information and strengthening the relationship among member countries.

This year, "Developing a National Framework on Managing Internally Displaced Populations (IDPs) during emergencies" was selected as one of the target projects of the fifth year. After the submission of country report, reviewer team composed of Ph.D. Anawat Suppasri (Associate Professor, International Research Institute of Disaster Science, Tohoku University, Japan), Ms. Nwet Yin Aye (Deputy Director, The Ministry of Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement, Myanmar) and Mr. Junji Moriwaki (Researcher of ADRC) had visited Maldives to conduct interview surveys.

The team visited relevant organizations involving in DRR activities to examine how they have been making efforts of developing DRR in Maldives. Then, the team conducted inspection and interview at 2004 Indian Ocean Earthquake and Tsunami affected area, and prepared a draft report of the survey result with all findings and recommendations (such as the development of DRR at community level, through capability and legislation building). Also the workshop was held in Male for getting opinion and comments to finalize the report, as well as introducing good practices for reducing tsunami risk and IDPs management activities in Japan and Myanmar. It provided a very good opportunity for exchanging opinions each other.

This project aims at developing the mutual learning process among ADRC member countries instead of one-way learning. After the survey missions, reviewer team will compile survey reports and send them to target countries and then to ADRC member countries to enhance cross-fertilization.

ADRC would like to express its sincerest gratitude to all of those who have made precious contribution to this project.

(2013/12/23 19:40)

18-21 December 2013 (Leyte, Philippines)

IMG_0507.JPGIn December 2013, a team of researchers and experts from ADRC/IRP visited some areas in the provinces of Leyte and Samar that were impacted by typhoon Haiyan (local name Yolanda) in the Philippines. The objective was to draw information on preparedness, response, and plans for recovery in order to provide greater understanding of the disaster, including what gaps and challenges need to be addressed.

The team found that essential preparations were made in anticipation of the super typhoon, such that preemptive evacuations to schools, churches, stadiums, and public buildings were made. Additionally, relief goods and services were ready in most command centers. However, the preparations did not match the magnitude of the unexpected super typhoon which caused massive storm surge that destroyed the evacuation and command centers, specifically those located near the coast. Among of the immediate impacts were high casualties, relief goods washed away, and command centers became dysfunctional. Subsequently, the response effort had no choice but to be delayed. As island provinces, there were challenges in the operational capacities of airports and seaports as well as communication/coordination because most infrastructures were damaged. In fact, most relief goods and services were stranded in some islands before reaching the impacted areas.

In terms of recovery, the local governments and communities acknowledged that greater challenges in housing, livelihoods, and infrastructure are expected. Since most areas where flattened, people immediately need shelter. Communities also need alternative livelihoods because assets from original activities such as coconut harvesting, farming, and fishing were gone. Furthermore, the local market, transportation, energy, and communication infrastructure were also urgently needed. The findings from the visit suggest that in terms of preparedness, public awareness on storm surge needs to be strengthened, location of evacuation and command centers need to be reviewed, and policies and activities on preparedness (e.g. early warning systems) need to be reassessed. In terms of response, the capacities of local governments and communities to provide immediate relief goods/services need to be enhanced in anticipation of the delays from external agencies due to logistical challenges. In terms of recovery, it is crucial that communities are actively engaged in planning and implementing the programs and projects.

In view of these suggestions, IRP/ADRC plans to organize a workshop in the Province of Leyte in early 2014 to be participated by local government officials and key stakeholders to re-assess the needs for drills and proper information dissemination, re-evaluate early warning systems, and provide technical assistance for recovery planning at the provincial/city/municipality levels.

(2014/1/28 18:30)

1-5 December 2013, Macao

IMG_6284.JPGThe Asian Disaster Reduction Center (ADRC), participated in the 8th Integrated Workshop in conjunction with the 2nd Training and Research Coordination Group Forum of the Typhoon Committee which was jointly organized by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP), the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Typhoon Committee Secretariat, the Macao Meteorological and Geophysical Bureau in Macao on 2-4 December 2013. The more than 100 participants who attended the meeting included representatives from Cambodia, China, D.P.R. Korea, Japan, Lao, Malaysia, Philippines, Republic of Korea, Thailand, US, Viet Nam, as well as representatives of the organizing institutions. The participants discussed their approaches of"Forecasting, Warning and DRR Strategies in the Mitigation of Tropical Cyclone Impact in a Multi-hazard Environment" which was the main theme of the meeting.
For the Disaster Risk Reduction Working Group, Japan's Cabinet Office gave a presentation on the damage caused by typhoons in 2013 and on ADRC activities such as the Visiting Researcher Program.
Furthermore, regarding the Typhoon Haiyan, the delegates of Philippines and Vietnam gave a presentation of the damage and the current states, and WMO and Japan Meteorological Agency, etc reported the assistance for them such as the provision of the typhoon information. As a result, we had a fruitful discussion such as the enhancement of cooperation among member countries.
The Typhoon Committee has two other working groups on meteorology and hydrology, in addition to the working group on disaster risk reduction. In this time, the three working groups and the Training and Research Coordination Group Forum was held together as an integrated event.
For more information, visit

(2013/12/6 19:40)

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