The human impacts of extreme weather events are worsening and the data is clear. At COP26 the Zurich Flood Resilience Alliance and the Red Cross Red Crescent Climate Centre will be providing a platform for people in vulnerable countries who live with this reality. It’s time to put them at the centre of the solution and mobilise more climate finance.
The latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) gave a ‘code red’ alert for climate. We shared our thoughts on what this meant for flood resilience. Floods affect more people globally than any other type of hazard, accounting for 46% of disasters triggered by natural hazards, impacting more than 673 million people. But how do we make the data make sense when people are overwhelmed with ‘numbers’ and live far away from people who live with extreme climate events?
Answer – we bring the people closer and let them tell their own story.
At the COP26 UN Climate Change Conference, we’re bringing their realities into the conversation – making sure that civil servants, scientists, businesses, and policy makers hear about their experiences first-hand and get a glimpse into the reality of living with climate extremes. Come and join us at the Development and Climate days.
Amplifying voices from flood prone communities across the globe
We’re sharing stories from Plan International’s work in Nicaragua and Mercy Corps’ work in Jordan and Indonesia. We’ll also be talking about how little money is flowing to countries experiencing conflict and we’ll share stories from our colleagues at Afghanaid.
Climate change is already having a catastrophic humanitarian impact, notably due to its impact on the frequency, intensity, and magnitude of extreme weather. The World Health Organization declared recently that climate change is the single biggest health threat facing humanity.
We know what works for increased climate resilience
Anticipatory action is increasingly being recognized as a robust tool to reduce humanitarian impacts of climate-related disasters. However, in order to be effective and sustainable, these systems must take into account current and future risks of extreme weather in a rapidly changing world.
We must invest in flood resilience and adaptation and focus attention on vulnerable communities already living with the impacts of climate change. We have clear evidence that early warning systems deliver strong value for money. We know what works and how to build an effective early warning system.
We believe that:
- Lived experiences of disasters must be at the centre of early warning early action system development (notably through people centred planning and gender sensitive early warning systems).
- Effective and timely warning can lead to action to reduce the impacts of disasters. This is increasingly recognized as an important tool for risk reduction.
- Climate change is making early warning early action not a ‘nice to have’ but a necessity.
- There is strong evidence that anticipatory action can mitigate disasters Governance, coordination, and climate finance is needed to extend this and reach to those who need it most.
This COP we are calling on world leaders to:
- Increase support to early warning, early action and Disaster Risk Reduction, thereby saving money for both the private and public sector rather than on post-flood recovery
- Work harder to speed up delivery of their commitment to mobilise $100bn climate finance per year, with 50% of finance directed towards adaptation
Hear more about our work at COP26 and help us share the message that we need to invest more, now in early warning, early action and get more ‘extreme’ in our efforts to reduce climate vulnerability.