WCSDA President Dong Yanzhang Delivers a Speech at the Third Session of the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction and World Reconstruction Conference

BEIJING, May 30, 2011 /PRNewswire-Asia/ -- The Third Session of the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction and World Reconstruction Conference organized by the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction kicked off in Geneva on May 11. The theme of the event is "Invest Today for Safer Tomorrow", aiming at facilitating the building of communities of resilience through promoting more rational resource allocation. The event brought together representatives from 175 countries and 176 regional and national organizations. UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon delivered the opening speech at the conference and challenged the international community to adopt measures on realizing a "disaster-free" development.

The Global Platform is the highest level of global conference on disaster prevention and reduction coordinated and organized by the UNISDR. The conference is held biennially and represents a universally influential event as it brings together officials and elites representing the UN, member states of the UN, international and regional organizations, NGOs, academic and scientific research institutions and the business community.

WCSDA was the only Chinese NGO invited to the conference. WCSDA president Dong Yanzhang delivered a speech under the theme of "Focusing on Sustainable City Development, Emergency Relief Knows No Boundary" at the meeting and received high praise from participants.

President Dong Yanzhang said: Six years ago, the Governments adopted the Hyogo Declaration and the Hyogo Framework for Action 2005-2015, aiming to build resilience of nations and communities to disasters through increased political commitment, scientific approach and integration of disaster risk assessment in development planning and programmes. In this connection, disaster risk reduction is slowly, but surely building its global momentum. We have seen an increased number of stakeholders to take action to implement the Hyogo Framework for Action worldwide.

As is known to all, China is one of the few countries that are exposed to severe natural hazards, such as floods and earthquakes. Disasters faced by China are frequent and covering wide areas with heavy losses. In particular, as of 1990s, economic losses caused by the so-called natural disasters keep mounting. Disasters have become a leading obstacle for economic development and social stability. We need to strengthen regional cooperation as disaster relief and rescue know no boundary. That said, what is gratifying is that the Chinese government and people are committed to disaster prevention and reduction and sustainable city development on the one hand and building strong partnership with cities of other countries on the other in a bid to fight against disasters and achieve sustainable city development.

The World Cities Scientific Development Alliance is part of the ongoing effort as we seek to contribute our part in promoting cooperation between Chinese cities and cities of the rest of the world. The World Cities Scientific Development Alliance is an NGO that works in the areas of urban risk reduction, disaster relief in cities and sustainable city development. We focus on sustainable urban development by promoting disaster prevention, risk reduction and risk integration of post-disaster reconstruction. We have been actively responding to the call of the United Nations for disaster risk reduction. We are building a strong partnership with the UNISDR to boost cooperation and collaboration among cities in building disaster resilient cities.

WCSDA joined hands with the UNISDR Secretariat, the People's Government of Chengdu and Sister Cities International to organize a forum under the theme of "Development and Cooperation Among Cities: Building Livable Cities for Humanity" in Chengdu, China from August 11th to 13th this year. The forum will bring together more than 200 experts and mayors from across the world and offer them an opportunity to share information and insights on professional knowledge and best practices for sustainable city development and resilient to climate change and disasters.

The 2011 World Cities Scientific Development Forum will focus on four topics, namely Urban Planning and Design for Disaster Resilient Cities, Disaster and Emergency Management in Cities, Urban Economic Transition and Sustainable Development, and Bilateral and Multilateral Cooperation for Sustainable City Development. The World Cities Scientific Development Alliance is ready to join forces with all participants to strengthen the implementation of "The Hyogo Framework for Action 2005-2015: Building the Resilience of Nations and Communities to Disasters" and facilitate coordination among world cities on disaster prevention and reduction and post-disaster reconstruction. I hereby warmly invite all participants presented here to the 2011 World Cities Scientific Development Forum to contribute our parts for world cities scientific development.

Contact person: Ms. Chen Miao; Ms. Li Hui



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Source: World Cities Scientific Development Alliance