In 2008, the world spent US$12 billion on humanitarian responses to disasters. 99% of those killed by natural phenomena were in the Asia Pacific region, according to John Holmes, the UN Emergency Relief Coordinator.
Holmes said 10% of what we spend on response or even on development should go into disaster risk reduction to limit the consequences of natural disasters, especially given the impact of climate change. (Full)
In the past weeks, two deadly storms struck the Philippines killing more than 700 people. The flooding disaster affected more than 7 million people. (Source)
While the humanitarian community's response is in full swing, tropical storm Lupit is forming in the Pacific, having all the potential to turn into the a super typhoon. Lupit is predicted to hit the same areas previously affected by typhoons Parma and Ketsana. (Source).
One good example of disaster mitigation is Bangladesh, where over a 100-year period, 508 cyclones have hit the Bay of Bengal region. After the disastrous effect of Cyclone Sidr in 2007, the government planted 100 million trees as a natural coastal barrier for floods and cyclones. They extended their weather watch centres, expanded the network of volunteers to warn people of upcoming threats and increased their shelters in high risk areas.
Meanwhile, Humanitarian News monitors the latest news updates on the Philippines flooding. You can use this RSS feed with the latest updates.
Picture courtesy Jay Directo (AFP/Getty Images)