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Prelims Capsule

Disaster Management

India’s Atal Tunnel is now the World’s Longest Highway Tunnel above 10,000 ft

India’s Atal Tunnel is now the World’s Longest Highway Tunnel above 10,000 ft


  • GS 3 || Disaster Management || Disaster Management || Policy framework

What is Infrastructure?

Example of poor Infrastructure:

  • Building of large no. of dams on Periyar River triggered large no of earthquakes and landslides.
  • Kerala floods causes more than $3 million loss. Kerala floods have once again reminded our inadequacy to deal with natural disasters
  • 2001- Gujarat earthquake
  • 2006 – Surat flood
  • 2014 – Uttarakhand floods
  • 2015 – Chennai floods
  • 2016 – Bihar floods

Benefits of Infrastructure:

  • Saving lives: Statistical evidence suggests disaster prevention has helped limit loss of life to disasters in a number of developed and developing countries . In Bangladesh, for example, the fact that far fewer people were killed by a cyclone in 2008 (3,000) than by a similar one in 1970 (almost 500,000) is attributed to better disaster prevention
  • Protecting infrastructure and livelihoods: A review by the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR) found that the cost of property damage from all hazards between 1970 and 2008 totalled US$2,300 billion, but that effective disaster prevention had curtailed an upward trend
  • Protecting social systems: A review of humanitarian assistance provided by the Red Cross following the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami found that community-based DRR had a positive impact on social resilience through altering attitudes and behaviours towards risk
  • Protecting the environment: Increased disaster resilience has in some cases been associated with behaviours that preserve the natural environment. In Honduras, for example, resilience-building in an indigenous community from 1994 to 2002 led to slower forest destruction and at the borders between Kenya, Ethiopia and Somalia, collaborative local approaches to resilience have helped preserve pasture and water resources.
  • Supporting broader resilience in contexts of violent conflicts or fragile states: The drivers and constraints that shape resilience to natural hazards are largely similar to those that shape people’s resilience in contexts of violent conflict or fragile states. For example, countries with well-performing institutions are better able to both prevent disasters and reduce the likelihood of disaster-related conflict

Steps need to be taken:

  • Much more investment by the governments
  • Define climate resilience and codify it
  • Create standards to assess the climate resilience of an infrastructure
  • Incentivize builders and contractors to make infrastructure projects climate resilient
  • Penalize those not adhering to such standards

Way forward:

It is important to consider disasters as an opportunity because of the high attention and good will they generate and taking advantage of the situation to plan and design better infrastructure and mobilizing resources can result in resilient infrastructures, better local economies and livelihoods. In addition, stakeholders in the local economy must develop and adopt new visions which can be achieved through the implementation of new ideas which were difficult to implement before the disaster. The recovery process must also create a platform, where stakeholders at both local and national levels can take advantage of the learning opportunities that can promote building back better resilient infrastructures and livelihoods.

Mains oriented question:

CDRI boosts India’s soft power, but more importantly it has wider connotation than just economics, as synergy between disaster risk reductions, explain the role of CDRI in resilience from disaster. (200 words)