The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 provides a new global approach to disaster risk management policy and operations. In June 2016, the European Commission published an action plan to translate the Sendai priorities into EU policies.
Over the past decade, the frequency and intensity of disasters have increased significantly. On average, more than 100 000 people die every year worldwide due to natural disasters. These emergencies have cost the EU alone around €100 billion.
While fatalities tend to be higher in developing countries and economic losses higher in developed economies, all countries are vulnerable to disasters. Risk reduction, prevention and management policies are essential to reduce the impact of disasters thereby saving lives.
A global framework to reduce disaster risk
At the international level, work on disaster risk management is drawn together under the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction which was adopted by UN Member States in 2015 at the third UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction in Sendai, Japan and endorsed by the UN General Assembly. The Framework is the successor to the Hyogo Framework for Action 2005-2015. As the first of the post-2015 development agreements, it is the basis for a disaster-risk-informed sustainable development agenda.
States, their national and local authorities, regional and international organisations and other stakeholders, can commit on a voluntary basis to implement the four priorities of the Sendai Framework. Seven agreed global targets, most of which should be achieved by 2030, are measured globally by appropriate indicators to show progress in the implementation of the priorities.
The EU’s contribution to the Sendai Framework
The EU played a key role in the negotiations of the Sendai Framework. The European Commission adopted the Communication Post 2015 Hyogo Framework for Action: Managing risks to achieve resilience (COM(2014)215), followed by EU Member States Council Conclusions outlining the EU position.
In June 2016, the European Commission published an Action Plan which aims to guide the implementation of the Sendai Framework in EU policies. The Plan, covering a five-year period, provides for a more systematic disaster-risk-informed approach in EU policy making. Through an all-of-society engagement, it proposes concrete activities on risk knowledge, risk investments, disaster preparedness and resilience.
The action plan contributes to other international agreements and processes: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the global climate change agreement (COP21), the World Humanitarian Summit and the HABITAT III conference.