Posts Tagged ‘cyclone’

October 8 is International Day for Disaster Reduction

Thursday, October 9th, 2008
Natural disasters are devastating in the developing world

Natural disasters are devastating in the developing world

October 8 is the International Day for Disaster Reduction, continuing a tradition agreed upon by the United Nations General Assembly nearly twenty years ago in which the second Wednesday of October is designated to observe the need for better risk practices. It is the poor in the developing world who are most vulnerable to natural disasters. In 2008 alone, more than 62,000 people died in China’s Sichuan-Wenchuan Earthquake and Cyclone Nargis killed or left homeless more than 84,000 people in Myanmar.

I had the experience to speak with small business owners and government officials in Beijing concerning the disaster vulnerabilities of smaller enterprises. Representatives of more than ten Asian countries participated. With the passage of time, we forget the severity of threats, such as SARS and avian bird flu. October 8 is a day to reflect on how we might improve our resilience to such threats, particularly for the most vulnerable among us.