An international symposium on “Climate Action and Disaster Risk Reduction” was held on 30 June 2020, aiming to strengthen the synergies between three major global agendas – The Paris Agreement, the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, and the Sustainable Development Goals. The virtual event was co-organised by the Ministry of the Environment Japan (MOEJ), Cabinet Office Japan, and the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR). UNU-IAS collaborated with this symposium through the Governance for Sustainable Development Project.
During the keynote address, UNDRR stressed the importance of achieving the SDGs in consideration of climate change risks, as well as delivering expectations for Japan on DRR. The panel discussion that followed this focused on the challenges and directions of efforts for disasters intensified by climate change in the international society and Japan’s role to strengthen synergies among the three global agendas.
Professor Kazuhiko Takemoto, Visiting Professor, UNU-IAS served as a facilitator for the panel discussion with experts from various fields including public sector, academia, and financial sector. The panel noted the importance of scientific knowledge and the way in which it influences society as well as mobilising financial resources for projects to support vulnerable areas. The discussions emphasised the importance of extending Japan’s knowledge, experience, and scientific technology related to climate change and DRR for international cooperation. The panel concluded with the need for a multi-governance approach, and further collaboration across relevant ministries, development agencies, finance, academia, and private sectors towards realising synergies among the three global agendas.
After the symposium, Ministers of MOEJ and Cabinet Office Japan together with UNDRR had an open dialogue, highlighting the direction of “Build Back Better” narratives towards a sustainable future. They addressed their joint message, “Strategy for enhancing the synergy between Climate Action and Disaster Risk Reduction in the era of Climate Crisis”, reiterating the need to shift from restoring the status quo to “adaptive recovery”, thus addressing disaster recovery in a resilient and immediate manner to increase community response capacities.
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