Katherine Kennedy By: Katherine Kennedy
International Consultant, Climate Change
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09 Apr 2020 : Cyclone Harold

Perhaps unsurprisingly considering the season, Cyclone Harold has hit the Pacific. The media, indicate that 25 people are dead in the Solomon Islands and now we are beginning to see footage of flooding in Fiji, significant damage in Vanuatu and the Cyclone coinciding with a king tide in Tonga. 



Tonga is completely flat, this will be a total nightmare. 

In addition to already being deeply alarmed by COVID19 I am becoming now really fearful about how it’s terrifying impact will superimpose on other extreme events. How can a DRR response to a cyclone in the Pacific, be delivered through COVID19? 

According to UNDRR; 

“This is a red-letter year for disaster risk reduction. UN Member States adopted the global plan to reduce disaster losses, the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction on 18 March 2015 and committed to have national and local strategies for disaster risk reduction in place by this year. It is essential now that these strategies are revisited to ensure that they prioritize the management of biological hazards and resilient health systems”.

So how can the SENDAI Framework even begin to help us to address meeting the multiple hazards presented via superimposition of COVID19 on top of an extreme weather event - or vice versa - it’s like peeling a disaster onion?

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