Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Dubai joins disaster reduction campaign

Sajila Saseendran in the Khaleej Times (Dubai): Local authorities are upgrading the disaster preparedness and response plans of Dubai as the emirate’s disaster reduction and management policies stand to be evaluated by a global body that is building an alliance of cities
 resilient to disasters.

Dubai has committed to be part of the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction’s (UNISDR) campaign and is one of the three Arab cities selected for a testing of the disaster reduction and preparedness criteria under a global platform provided by UNISDR, a senior official told Khaleej Times. Director of Public Health and Safety Department at Dubai Municipality Redha Hassan Salman, who has been assigned as the focal point for the UNISDR’s Resilient Cities’ Campaign here, said Dubai became a part of the World Disaster Reduction Programme this year. Participant cities agree to uphold a 10-point checklist for making cities resilient, called the “Ten Essentials.”

“There are nearly 900 cities that have registered to be part of the campaign. But, only a few have been chosen for the trial by UNISDR. Dubai is one of the three Arab cities selected for the test,” Salman said.

The evaluation of the disaster preparedness plans in place here, he said, is expected to strengthen the disaster response system and raise it closer to international standards. “Our team is in place and we are trying to strengthen and upgrade the disaster preparedness plan.” Salman was speaking after the visit of Helena Molina Valdes, Deputy-Director of the UNISDR, to Dubai on Wednesday, a day before the International Day for Disaster Reduction....

NASA image of Dubai in 2006

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