What is climate-smart risk informed development?
To be resilient a community, system, or society must be able to continue on their development and growth path while managing existing and potential future disaster risk. Climate-smart risk informed development takes place at the intersection of climate change adaptation, disaster risk reduction, and sustainable development.
Investment in adaptation is important, but we cannot lose sight of avoiding new risk creation. Climate change is already expanding the risk landscape; we can no longer afford to increase risks through poor planning, lack of regulation, or insufficient political will.
The impacts of climate change are evident and accelerating; climate change is exacerbating existing natural hazard risks and creating new risks across the globe. Failing to take climate change and changing risk environments into account in development planning threatens to undermine development progress.
Addressing risk reduction, climate change adaptation, and development together
Risk reduction, climate change adaptation, and development investment should not be mutually exclusive, nor should they compete for money. Rather, they can and should be addressed together.
If development is risk and climate-informed:
- it will achieve sustainable development objectives in a cost-efficient way;
- it will avoid creating new risk (the Alliance calls this ‘prospective risk reduction’); and
- it will be climate-smart under future conditions.
When budgeting and planning for development, adaptation, or disaster risk reduction, don’t think of them as separate sectors or approaches. Instead, focus on incorporating climate change adaptation, risk reduction, and development in your work.
The Zurich Flood Resilience Alliance focusses on the Triple Resilience Dividends of Disaster Risk Management investments to make the case for climate smart risk informed development:
- Avoiding losses when disasters strike;
- Stimulating economic activity thanks to reduced disaster risk; and
- Development co-benefits, or co-uses, of a specific investment.
We’re thinking a lot about how to utilise the multiple multiple dividends of disaster risk reduction activities or interventions to encourage investments. You can find out more in the blog Solutions providing multiple resilience dividends require integrated approach.
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This guidebook has been developed to be used by local government employees, and other practitioners, engaged in mainstreaming climate smart disaster r