The disaster management practices must give due attention towards Disaster Resilient Infrastructure. Discuss why the Disaster Resilient Infrastructure is the need of hour.

Published: October 12, 2019

At the Climate Action Summit in New York on September 23, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the launch of the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI) and invited all countries to join it.

Why the Disaster Resilient Infrastructure is the need of the hour?

Over the years the countries have developed robust disaster management practices which have helped in sharply reducing human casualties in a disaster. But the economic costs of a disaster remain huge mainly due to the damage caused to big infrastructure. For example, Cyclone Fani caused damage to the tune of $4 billion in Odisha. The losses in the Kerala floods last year could be in excess of $4.4 billion.

While the developing world is still building its basic infrastructure, the developed countries are in the process of replacing old infrastructure that has completed their lifetimes. These future infrastructures must take into account the heightened risks arising out of the increased frequency and intensity of extreme weather events and other adverse impacts of climate change. Even existing infrastructure would need to be retrofitted to make them more resilient.

Disaster-proofing a project would involve changes in design, and use of newer technologies and would entail additional costs. But it has to be kept in mind that they are only a fraction of the losses that a disaster can bring. Hence Disaster Resilient Infrastructure is the need of the hour.

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