More people live in urban areas than in rural areas today, and the proportion is expected to be over two-third by 2050. Urbanisation mirrors economic growth, but rapid and unplanned urbanisation and environmental degradation act as key risk drivers leading to a growing spate of disasters in cities. Climate change will further amplify risk and exacerbate vulnerabilities, extreme events and disaster’s impact.
Considering that as most actions take place at the local level, it is important to identify and understand risks at that scale. People at risk need to be identified and strategies need to take their needs and capacities into account. Complex interactions among natural, human, economic and political systems and the systemic nature of risks clearly points to the need to rethink the way disaster and climate risks are managed at all scales but especially closer to where those vulnerable ones are.
The session “Accelerating local action for climate and disaster resilience” will highlight these emerging challenges to urban resilience and will focus on addressing them through local disaster risk reduction, climate change adaptation and resilience strategies. In particular, a roadmap on how to strengthen the capacities of local actors to embrace a climate-sensitive risk-informed approach to local development will be shared for feedback at the session
Feedback received from the participants and ensuing discussions will also inform how urban and local action will be addressed at the 2020 Asia-Pacific Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction, being co-organised by the Government of Australia and UNDRR.