News

New catastrophe preparedness concept

28 March, 2018 [Global Care]

Knorr-Bremse Global Care is supporting the German Red Cross (DRK) in introducing an innovative approach designed to improve catastrophe preparedness.

According to the latest figures from the World Bank, there will be more than 140 million refugees as a result of climate change by 2050. Even today, people in Peru are repeatedly exposed to the severe effects of the El Niño weather phenomenon. In order to counter this, Knorr-Bremse Global Care is supporting the German Red Cross (DRK) in introducing an innovative approach designed to improve catastrophe preparedness.

The “forecast-based financing” concept is intended to warn people in good time of potential natural disasters in order to alleviate the often devastating effects. Certain indicators and limits have been defined so that extreme weather phenomena can be forecast better. This is done by means of what are known as climate risk analyses conducted by the Red Cross and Red Crescent Climate Center (RCCC) and other partners. As soon as the defined limits in a given region are exceeded, the population there can be warned, supplied, and supported in good time.

Knorr-Bremse Global Care is currently assisting a pilot project run by the DRK in the regions of Lambayeque and Piura in Northern Peru. These regions are frequently afflicted by heavy rainfall caused by El Niño which can lead to severe flooding or landslides. With the help of the funds provided by Global Care, the DRK can carry out a science-based risk analysis and select the necessary weather forecasts, define thresholds and aid measures, and procure relief supplies for 500 families and deliver them in an emergency.

In practice, the preparedness measures are as follows: The measures are triggered as soon as a certain critical threshold, e.g. the water level of a river, is exceeded. Different measures are taken at different times that have been defined in advance. The closer an emergency is to occurring, the more specific the implementation steps become. Three months in advance, training courses regarding water and hygiene are organized; a few days in advance, on the other hand, hygiene kits and chlorine tablets for water purification are distributed.

“With forecast-based financing, the DRK is ushering in a new age in disaster relief: Away from purely reacting, to anticipating. We are glad to have partners like Knorr-Bremse Global Care who help us to jointly develop innovative solutions such as FbF and thus shape the future of humanitarian aid”, says Alexandra Rüth, Head of Task Force Humanitarian Adaption to Climate Change, of the German Red Cross society.

Knorr-Bremse Global Care has been helping people in Peru to adapt to climate change since 2013. Forecast-based financing now adds another innovative approach with which to improve the situation for the people there.

For further information on “forecast-based financing” visit: https://www.drk.de/en/forecast-based-financing/

 
Share