Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Lack of data on droughts hampers risk reduction efforts

Andrew Purcell in Droughts pose a "hidden risk" as they are poorly understood and lack reliable data that could inform mitigation strategies, says a report on global disaster risk. Lack of systematic monitoring means that the risk of impeding drought is largely invisible despite having significant effects on agricultural production, rural livelihoods and economies, says 'Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction 2011: Revealing Risk, Redefining Development'.

According to the report, published by the UN International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UNISDR), current drought risk models are inadequate. Although efforts such as the US Agency for International Development's (USAID) Famine Early Warning System (FEWS Net) show how drought risk can be modelled when data is available, there is not enough data to do this at a global level.

"We had hoped to come up with a global risk assessment for drought, but we found that the data was simply not available," Andrew Maskrey, coordinator of the report, told SciDev.Net at the United Kingdom launch last week (30 June).

Although droughts have had catastrophic effects in the past — reducing crop yields by up to 40 per cent in the Caribbean, or causing total crop failure for 75 per cent of farmers in Syria — there is still no way of globally assessing risk. "It will take probably 8–10 years more work to get a global risk model for drought of a similar level to those which we currently have for other weather-related hazards," said Maskrey....

Barada River in Damascus almost totally desiccated in August 2010. Shot by Schumeru, Wikimedia Commons, under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license

1 comment:

Hampers said...

Thanks for the post!!
simplythankyou deals in wedding flowers, romantic flowers, celebration bunches and anniversary flowers. You can find different flower sections for each occasion.