Welcome to the Second Edition of the Regional Consultative Group (RCG) on Humanitarian Civil-Military Coordination for Asia and the Pacific Newsletter.
We are glad to share the latest updates in relation to the RCG as well as other UN-CMCoord projects in the Asia-Pacific region:
Second Session of the Regional Consultative Group (RCG) on Humanitarian Civil-Military Coordination for Asia and the Pacific;
UN-CMCoord Course for the Pacific;
Updates on the development of Common Humanitarian Civil-Military Coordination Standards.
As of 8 August, nearly 360,000 people have been displaced by seasonal monsoon flooding in Magway, Mandalay, Sagaing, Kachin, Ayeyarwady, Mon, Yangon and Bago. Of the total displaced population, 200,000 people are in Magway. State and regional authorities are providing food, water, NFIs, cash and construction materials. Humanitarian organizations are also supporting the government’s response with additional food support. Flood waters are gradually moving south towards the Ayeyarwady Delta as monsoon rains continue to affect various parts of the country.
Since 18 July, continuous heavy rainfall affected several areas of northern, central and eastern China triggering floods and landslides. As of 21 July, around 10.5 million people were affected in eight provinces (including Shanxi, Beijing, Tianjin, Hebei, Liaoning, Shandong, Henan, and Inner Mongolia). An estimated 337,000 people were temporarily relocated due to floods.
The Asia-Pacific region is one of the most disaster-prone areas in the world, with frequently occurring natural disasters including earthquakes, tsunamis, tropical storms, flooding, landslides and volcanic eruptions affecting millions of people every year.
At least 11 countries across Asia-Pacific experienced severe weather conditions due to El Niño.
In February, Tropical Cyclone Winston, the strongest cyclone recorded in the South Pacific, devastated Fiji.
In DPR Korea, 18million people are in need of some form of humanitarian assistance – 2016 response plan severely underfunded.
Tropical Storm Roanu triggers worst flooding in Sri Lanka in 25 years; preparedness actions mitigated loss of life in Bangladesh.
PAPUA NEW GUINEA
Increased rainfall has eased the drought situation in most parts of Papua New Guinea, however, severe food and water insecurity persists in remote, isolated and inaccessible areas. Following an inter-agency food security verification exercise, an additional 46,000 people have been assessed as requiring food in Milne Bay province. This brings the current total of people in need of food assistance to 226,000 people. The Government, together with WFP and local churches, are working on a joint plan to respond to needs identified in Milne Bay.
On 8 July Typhoon Nepartak made landfall near Taitung, Taiwan Province of China, as a Cat. 4 super typhoon with wind speeds of 234 km/h. Three people were reportedly killed and nearly 17,400 people were evacuated as a result of the storm, which caused storm surges and widespread damage to buildings and infrastructure.
Torrential rainfall over the middle and lower Yangtze River during the past week exacerbated flooding in the surrounding areas. The most recent rainfall affected nearly 2.8 million people in 11 provinces (Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Anhui, Fujian, Jiangxi, Hubei, Hunan, Chongqing, Sichuan, Guizhou, and Yunnan). At least 14 deaths have been recorded and some 20 people are reported missing, with 120,000 people temporarily relocated due to the recent flooding.
According to the Relief and Resettlement Department (RRD), heavy rains triggered flash floods in Kawlin, Wuntho and Pinlebu townships in Sagaing Region on 9 June.
More than 25,000 people were affected in Kawlin and two people killed in Wutho.
The floods damaged bridges and farmlands. The Sagaing Regional Government is responding to urgent needs while RRD is providing cash assistance.
Why a regional focus model?
A key challenge faced by humanitarian agencies is how to ensure that limited available resources are allocated where they are most needed and are efficiently delivered in a principled manner. Decisions to allocate resources must strike a balance between meeting the immediate needs of crisis affected communities and supporting efforts to strengthen resilience and response preparedness to future emergencies.
IASC Regional Network for Asia-Pacific
The ongoing humanitarian impact of extreme weather events caused by El Niño, which began in 2015, are likely to continue in many cases in the Asia-Pacific region until the third quarter of 2016. While emergency needs in many countries are waning due to recent rainfalls, in many areas longer-term engagement, in particular around resilience and early recovery is still needed.
On 2 June, a 6.5 magnitude earthquake struck 79 km off the southwestern coast of West Sumatra province at a depth of 72 km.
Authorities reported that the quake damaged a hospital and 912 houses in West Sumatra and Bengkulu provinces.
At least 30 people were injured including some during evacuation. Local governments, the Indonesian Red Cross and NGOs provided assistance to the affected communities.
912 houses damaged
The humanitarian impact of the 2015-2016 El Niño remains deeply alarming, now affecting over 60 million people. Central America, East Africa (particularly Ethiopia), the Pacific and Southern Africa remain the most affected regions. The El Niño phenomenon is now in decline, but projections indicate the situation will worsen throughout at least the end of the year, with food insecurity caused primarily by drought not likely to peak before December. Therefore, the humanitarian impacts will last well into 2017 .
Following the floods and landslides triggered by Tropical Storm Roanu, the President of Sri Lanka has established a special Environmental Relief Task Force to manage the impact of the disaster and to facilitate suitable living conditions for the affected people. As of 26 May, over 300,000 people are affected. Authorities confirmed 104 fatalities and over 21,000 people remain displaced. Bilateral assistance from several countries in the region continues to arrive to support the ongoing response.
From 15 to 22 May, floods and landslides triggered by Tropical Storm Roanu affected over 340,000 people across 22 districts.
BNPB reported that in April 2016 alone, 137 disasters occurred with flood being the most common followed by whirlwind. Flood and landslide. – resulting in a total of 21 deaths, at least 161,000 people affected. Hydrometeorological disasters have therefore been more frequent during the period.
30 March - 4 April
The Government of Mongolia has officially declared the winter dzud over; however rains and unseasonal snow continue to impact vulnerable herders by putting stress on their livelihoods due to additional livestock deaths. Since January, some 1.1 million animals (up to 5.8 per cent) of the national livestock total have perished. Cash grants and cash-for-work interventions have begun as part of early recovery efforts. In March, CERF allocated $2.4 million to jumpstart health and nutrition, agriculture, protection and early recovery activities.
During the past week, strong winds, heavy rain and hail continued to affect various parts of Myanmar. The Relief and Resettlement Department (RRD) reported over 64,500 people have been affected with over 23,300 houses damaged. It is expected that heavy rainfall will continue in the coming days heightening the risk of landslides in Chin and Kachin states.