In a theoretical analysis of the complex of natural disaster dynamics (including physical processes, spatial statistics, and economy; see Spanish text or English summary), the conclusion was reached that a key factor for decreasing the risk of disaster is to increase the availability of money for mitigation, or in other words, to decrease the interest rate. Since the interest rate depends on the risk level, they are mutually dependent. Investor confidence must therefore be won by other means to break the evil circle.
Although mapping efforts and assessment methods are being developed, and physical planning implemented, and significant advances have been made, it will take many years before any positive results show up in the disaster statistics. Meanwhile, interest rates will remain high, as will the poverty, and the vulnerability will decrease slower than it could have if investors had more confidence in the disaster mitigation plans. This is an evil circle.
The purpose is therefore both to speed up the dissemination and implementation of natural hazard mitigation, and to create investor confidence in the actions taken.
The international standard for mitigating natural disasters should as a minimum cover the following topics:
In line with the ISO 9000 and ISO 14000 standards, it is suggested that disaster prevention plans developed according to the standard be certified. Certification provides some level of assurance for potential investors, lenders, and others, and thus creates the desired feed-back for breaking the evil circle mentioned above.
Who is the user?
The standard would be used by local, regional, and national governments, in physical planning, and in preparing for disaster prevention, mitigation, and disaster relief and reconstruction.
The standard could be hierachic, so that the disaster prevention plan for a region could only be certified if all the communities within the region have had their plans certified.
Who will pay for it?
As the purpose is to break an evil circle of disasters, and largely do it with market-economic means by stimulating private investments, the funding for the creation and implementation of a disaster prevention plan is expected to be very interesting for both the World Bank group, and many bilateral aid programs. After initial training, much of the work can be done by local personnel, although an international certification would be required.
Who is for creating this standard?
Write me a line if you are interested in pursuing this: firstname.lastname@example.org