A Green Economy for Sustainable Development: Literacy, Land and Women’s Rights (2-3)
UNESCO produced a report on how the world can achieve a green economy on the basis of sustainable development which was present to the UN Conference on Sustainable Development Rio+20 which was convened on 20-22 June 2012 in Brazil. We review on this page this report due to its importance of development especially in developing countries during the coming decades.
© UNESCO/Roger Dominique
Natural disasters have increased sharply in the second half of the 20th century. Arid and semi-arid areas globally face the greatest pressures to deliver and manage freshwater resources. These areas are particularly vulnerable to climate variability, with consequences that may have very serious social and environmental effects. UNESCO-IHP launched the Global Network on Water and Development Information in Arid lands (G-WADI) in 2002 with the aim to strengthen the global capacity needed to manage the water resources of arid and semiarid areas. In cooperation with the Center for Hydrometeorology and Remote Sensing (CHRS), University of California, Irvine, UNESCO-IHP developed tools to provide access to global satellite estimates of precipitation at high spatial and temporal resolutions that are relevant for the monitoring of precipitation.
The Groundwater for Emergency Situations (GWES) Programme provides guidance in identifying bodies of groundwater resources resistant to natural disasters located in areas at risk. These aquifers, if properly managed, could supply drinking water in the poster-disaster emergency phase, replacing damaged water supply systems. The GWES Methodological Guide provides background information on groundwater protection with particular reference to its use in emergency situations, as a result of natural hazards and hydrological extremes. It also outlines the governance policy framework in which groundwater as an emergency resource may be integrated into overall emergency management and service provision.
The IPCC predicts that by 2080, millions more people will experience flooding every year due to sea level rise.
In recent years many countries around the world experienced devastating floods resulting in many deaths and damage to infrastructure. The IPCC predicts that by 2080, millions more people will experience flooding every year due to sea level rise. Decreased land precipitation and increased temperatures are important factors which have contributed to more regions experiencing droughts. Droughts aggravate food security and lead to an increase in food prices which puts further stress on the most vulnerable segments of society.
Responding to the Floods in Pakistan
UNESCO’s water family provided a comprehensive response to the 2010 devastating floods in Pakistan by upgrading the flood forecasting and early warning system through education and training at various levels. The UNESCO flood management program in Pakistan is using the software and management tools developed by the International Centre for Water Hazard and Risk Management (ICHARM), a UNESCO category-2 centre hosted by the Government of Japan.
Mapping Zones of Inundation Risk
One of the keys to improve climate resilience is to strengthen the knowledge management system of countries. UNESCO is fostering research on “Preparedness for Flood Risk Reduction through Mapping and Assessing Risk and Management Options and Building Capacity in Lal Bakaiya Watershed, Nepal”. The project is developing multi hazard maps to better identify flood hazards, and assess vulnerability and climate change risks. The study is also trying to identify and assess structural and non-structural mitigation measures and adaptation options, including strategies to build capacities of key stakeholders through awareness raising, training, networking and institutional strengthening. It is being implemented under the HKH-FRIEND Initiative, with ICIMOD cofunding.
Education for Disaster Risk Reduction
The disasters in Haiti and Pakistan in 2010 have shown the need for education to build a culture of safety and resilience at all levels. Indeed, education in disaster risk reduction strategies can save lives and prevent injuries should a hazardous event occur; prevent interruptions to the provision of education, or ensure its swift resumption in the event of an interruption. It also develops a resilient population that is able to reduce the economic, social and cultural consequences.
UNESCO gives policy advice and technical assistance in restoring education systems in post-disaster situations. It is active in advocacy, networking and participation in interagency activities, to make sure that educational needs are addressed in post-disaster settings. It is actively involved in post-disaster programmes.
The Myanmar Education Recovery Programme (MERP) enhances the resilience of the education sector by focusing on Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) and Emergency Preparedness. In order to help the country’s catastrophe contingency plans, UNESCO, in close collaboration with the Ministry of Education, has produced a comprehensive multi-stakeholder capacity-building package on Disaster Risk Reduction in Education which includes a focus on the impacts of climate change. In 2010, over two thousand educators from affected townships in Myanmar participated in training on DRR in education. Furthermore, over one hundred teacher trainers from 20 teacher training institutes in Myanmar received similar training. As a result, over 400 000 students in affected areas have benefited from educational content focused on disaster preparedness.
By Alula Berhe Kidani, E-mail:email@example.com, 10/08/2012