An Assessment of Mainstreaming Climate Change Concerns into Institutions and Policies for Disaster Risk Reduction in ASEAN

August 10, 2020

Countries in Southeast Asia are highly vulnerable to climate change as is evident from the rise in disaster events. The member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) are on the pathway to rapid economic and social development, but their prospects are at risk if threats posed by climate change and associated disaster risks are not addressed adequately with a sense of urgency.

Coordination between disaster risk reduction (DRR) and climate change adaptation (CCA) will help in efficient implementation of projects and programmes as well as the integration of relevant policies with greater effectiveness. The ASEAN Committee on Disaster Management (ACDM) has a legally-binding regional agreement called the ASEAN Agreement on Disaster Management and Emergency Response that corresponds to the Hyogo Framework for Action 2005-2015. Associated periodic work programmes have been adopted to implement it and coordination of policies and activities for DRR and CCA has been listed as one of the priority programmes. Particularly the Work Programme 2013-2015 selected the ‘Strengthening institutional and policy framework on disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation integration’ as a Concept Note No. 20 of the flagship and priority projects.

In addition, leaders of the ASEAN adopted the Declaration on Institutionalising the Resilience of ASEAN and its Communities and Peoples to Disaster and Climate Change at the 26thASEAN Summit in 2015, in which the ACDM was appointed as a focal point for cross-sectoral cooperation on resilience building at the regional level.

Keeping the above background in view, a study was carried out to assess the status of DRR-CCA coordination and integration in ten ASEAN Member States in cooperation with the ASEAN Working Group on Prevention and Mitigation of the ACDM with support from the technical cooperation project of the Japan International Cooperation Agency. This paper presents the results of the study succinctly and outlines salient features of the Priority Work Plan for 2020 developed to facilitate integration of DRR and CCA in the ASEAN region.

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