Resolution on Building Resilience to Disasters and Crises

APPF24-RES-27

24th Annual Meeting of the Asia-Pacific Parliamentary Forum (APPF)
Vancouver, Canada January 17-21, 2016

Resolution on Building Resilience to Disasters and Crises

APPF24/RES/27

(Sponsored by Japan, Chile and Mexico)

The 24th Annual Meeting of the Asia Pacific Parliamentary Forum;

Recalling the particular vulnerability of the Asia-Pacific region to natural disasters and the large number of recent natural disasters in our region;

Mindful of the huge economic and human costs that natural and human-made disasters and crises contribute to the suffering of societies and economies in terms of fatalities, increased numbers of refugees and displaced peoples, and the destruction of infrastructure;

Noting that the Asia-Pacific Parliamentary Forum (APPF) is an organization that seeks to identify and discuss issues of regional interest and concern, with the aim of  promoting them in a global context;

Recalling that the APPF Member States encourages and promotes regional cooperation at all levels on issues of common interest with a sense of cohesion, understanding and coordination;

Bearing in mind the Asia Pacific Parliamentary Forum (APPF) previous resolutions in regard to risk prevention and management, specially Resolution N° 8 on “Disaster Prevention” passed during the 23rd Annual Meeting held in January 2015, Resolution N° 15 on “Disaster Risk Reduction” taken during the 22nd Annual Meeting held in January 2014 and Resolution N° 7 on “Cooperation on Disaster Prevention” taken during the 20th Annual Meeting held in January 2012;

Recalling the particular vulnerability of the Asia-Pacific region to natural disasters and the differentiated influence of the Pacific Plate, Nazca, Ring of Fire impacts, volcanic threats, tsunamis and El Niño – Southern Oscillation, among others;

Recognizing that investing in reducing risk and improving economic and social disaster resilience not only provides a comprehensive response to save lives, but also promotes sustainable socio-economic development;

Recognizing the substantial contributions of the Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA) 2005-2015 to the formulation of strategies and policies to reduce disaster risk, eradicate poverty, reduce inequality and implement a sustainable and inclusive development, as a result of different factors such as climate change, rapid unplanned urbanization, and the inadequate use of soils and natural resources amongst others that tend to create higher vulnerability;

Welcoming the adoption of Sendai Declaration and Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 in the Third UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction held in Sendai, Japan;

Welcoming the adoption of the resolution to designate November 5 as World Tsunami Awareness Day at the Plenary Session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York on December 22nd, 2015;

Recognizing that the economic losses and damages from disasters and their impact on development tend to be exacerbated by current development patterns;

Recognizing the contributions of the Global Campaign "Developing Resilient Cities: My City is Getting Ready", so that societies are able to manage and prevent natural disasters, minimizing damage, and, in the case they occur, have effective, timely and coordinated measures for emergency, recovery and reconstruction;

Confirming that the international community should cooperate to the substantial reduction of disaster losses in lives and in social, economic, cultural and environmental assets;

Noting that governments in the Asia-Pacific region, with the support of parliamentarians, have made significant progress in their legal frameworks to effectively influence the disaster risk reduction;

Stressing the importance of Asia-Pacific parliamentary cooperation in the mitigation of natural disasters, due to increasingly important role played by international and regional parliamentary organizations in social and humanitarian areas;


RESOLVES TO:

  1. Call upon governments at all levels in the Asia-Pacific region to prioritize measures incorporating disaster risk reduction in their public policies and allocating adequate financial resources for this purpose;
  2. Recommend the national authorities of the Asia-Pacific area to continue reinforcing the good governance in relation to disaster risk management strategies at all levels and specially value the importance of empowering – through the most suitable mechanisms for every country´s situation - the local governments and communities to carry out prevention and disaster reduction tasks;
  3. Encourage parliamentarians from the Asia-Pacific region to formulate national laws designed to regulate and coordinate prevention and response to the affected population in situations of disaster, ensuring that these laws pay special attention to the needs of the most vulnerable in the population;
  4. Encourage parliamentarians from the Asia-Pacific region to in turn encourage their governments and UN agencies, to conduct risk reduction strategies, exchange of technology, establishment of early warning systems and rapid response mechanisms, and to update the Risk Atlas, among others;
  5. Promote the topic of risk reduction in APPF Member States policies and development plans, including strategies for reducing poverty and sectoral and multisectoral policies and plans; additionally, introduce regulations and mechanisms that encourage compliance and promote incentives for risk reduction activities;
  6. Appeal to APPF Member States to expand mutual cooperation in disaster risk reduction as stated in the "Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015- 2030", as well as dealt with regional cooperation frameworks such as APEC, ASEAN, the East Asia Summit (EAS) and the Trilateral Japan-China-ROK;
  7. Promote investment among APPF Member States in the economic, social, health, cultural and educational resilience of persons, communities, countries and the environment, as well as through technology and research; enhancing multi-hazard early warning systems, preparedness, response, recovery, rehabilitation and reconstruction, as mentioned in the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction
    2015-2030; and emphasizing the importance of reducing the risks through timely investments that uphold developing national disaster resilience at all levels of society;
  8. Promote the implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 among all APPF Member States, ensuring an approach to societal resilience that is participatory, inclusive, accountable and effective in the Asia-Pacific region in developing and strengthening mechanisms to follow up, periodically assess and publicly report on progress on national and local plans;
  9. Affirm the importance of diffusing knowledge on tsunamis and raising people’s awareness and promote countermeasures against tsunamis worldwide in order to protect as many precious lives as possible;
  10. Urge the countries of the region - through their governments, parliamentary systems, universities, research centers and scientific technical institutes - to work in an integrated way and to collaborate in the reduction of information gaps and the improvement of the analysis and characterization of threats;
  11. Boost the setting of standardized proceedings and guidelines on matters related to disaster prevention and management in the Asia-Pacific Region, and encourage not only the national competent agencies to work in coordination to provide answers during emergencies but also encourage the national work groups to face up catastrophes, and even to create task groups at regional levels able to deploy
    immediately in order to support the national teams;
  12. Remind all competent authorities and all private and public interested parties, at all levels, that disaster risk reduction and resilience building is a task that involves the whole society, therefore it is necessary to count on the coordinated contributions of all actors;
  13. Draw special attention to the most vulnerable people and social groups, as well as to developing countries that are being affected by disasters in an unprecedented way, and establish multi-sectoral disaster risk management policies that reinforce resilience in poor communities;
  14. State that protecting essential services, particularly schools and hospitals, is a major social priority;
  15. Affirm the importance of clearly having positioned disaster risk reduction in the 2030 agenda for Sustainable Development in order to mainstream disaster risk reduction;
  16. Urge the regional and international parliamentary organizations, United Nations agencies and regional and international organizations to double their efforts and develop programs and actions to foster consciousness not only on the damage caused by natural disasters and by those provoked by natural and human disasters;
  17. Ensure that gender perspectives are mainstreamed in decision-making about the planning, allocation and evaluation during disaster and crises, which must respond to the specific needs of women in a comprehensive and consistent manner.


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Resolution on Building Resilience to Disasters and Crises

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