Dzud is a cyclical slow onset disaster unique to Mongolia. It consists of a summer drought, resulting in insufficient production of hay, followed by a very heavy winter snow (10 to 350 cm), winds and lower than normal temperatures (-40° C to-50° C). During this time an excessive number of livestock die causing basic services, and in the longer term, livelihoods to collapse in vulnerable herder communities.
The current El Niño started in Asia and the Pacific region from as early as March 2015. It reached strong levels in some countries in July 2015. In many countries the effects of the phenomenon remained strong throughout the first quarter of 2016. However, the humanitarian impacts have now become critical in many countries and humanitarian response have been ramping up.
On 17 March 2016, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the World Food Programme (WFP), the International Fund for Agriculture Development (IFAD) and the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) hosted a one-day meeting on El Niño Impacts and Priorities for Action. The event was well attended by representatives of member states, resource partners, UN agencies and NGOs, among others.
As of 11 March, some 14,800 people affected by Typhoon Winston remain in 476 evacuation centres. All evacuation centres in Central Division have closed and only three remain open in Northern Division. In Eastern Division, however, 7,800 people remain in the centres including people from the most severely affected islands including Koro.
Dzud is a cyclical slow onset disaster unique to Mongolia. It consists of a summer drought, resulting in insufficient production of hay, followed by a very heavy winter snow (10 to 350 cm), winds and lower than normal temperatures (-40° C to -50° C). During this time an excessive number of livestock die causing basic services, and in the longer term, livelihoods to collapse in vulnerable herder communities.
60 million PEOPLE WILL BE AFFECTED BY EL NIÑO IN THE FOUR MOST AFFECTED REGIONS
2.8 million PEOPLE REQUIRE HUMANITARIAN ASSISTANCE IN GUATEMALA AND HONDURAS
10.2 million PEOPLE IN NEED OF EMERGENCY FOOD IN ETHIOPIA
14 million FOOD INSECURE PEOPLE IN SOUTHERN AFRICA – EXCLUDING SOUTH AFRICA
El Niño status
Current conditions and forecast
Oceanic and atmospheric indicators suggest the 2015/2016 El Niño has peaked with a return to neutral conditions expected during the second quarter of 2016. However, countries continue to feel the effects of El Niño which include below average precipitation during the rainy season, more intense cyclones in the North-Western Pacific and potentially more frequent cyclones in the South Pacific over the coming weeks, as well as drought in South and South-East Asia.
Severe Tropical Cyclone Ula will start to weaken as it moves south from Vanuatu after spending the past 13 days impacting countries across the Pacific. The cyclone passed close to the southern islands of Vanuatu as a Category 4 system on 10 Jan bringing heavy rain, some localised flooding, crop damage and heavy seas. Assessments are underway but there are no reports of major damage and there have been no requests for international assistance.
Temperatures in the Asia-Pacific region can go very high with central India reaching 50oC or more. The Tibetan plateau rarely exceeds 20oC because of its high elevation.
These temperatures are based on average highs over a period of approximately 50 years. Maximum temperatures in the region may therefore be from different months of the year and a temperature in any given location may exceed these maximums.
Köppen-Geiger Climate Classification
The highly referenced climate classification map of Wladimir Köppen was published for the first time in 1900 and updated in its latest version by Rudolf Geiger in 1961.
Climate classification is applied to a broad range of topics in climate and climate change research as well as in physical geography, hydrology, agriculture, biology and educational aspects.
The Human Footprint
Human influence on the earth’s land surface is a global driver of ecological processes on the planet, en par with climatic trends, geological forces and astronomical variations. The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) and the Center for International Earth Science Information Network (CIESIN) at Columbia University joined together to systematically map and measure the human influence on the earth’s land surface today.
This map shows the average amount of precipitation falling in a year, based on approximately 50 years of data. The figures shown do not therefore represent the amount of precipitation that may occur in any given year.
Using an innovative approach with GIS and remote sensing, the Oak Ridge National Laboratory LandScanTM is the community standard for global population distribution. At approximately 1 km resolution LandScan is the finest resolution global population distribution data available and represents an ambient population (average over 24 hours).
Elevation and Bathymetry
The region is home to the world's highest mountain, Mount Everest (Sagarmatha in Nepal and Chomolungma in China) at 8,848m, as well as the deepest surveyed point in the oceans,
Challenger Deep in the Marianas Trench at 10,911m.
The Asia-Pacific region contains a diverse array of cultures, environments, and societies. One of the fastest growing economic regions in the world, it is also the most disaster-prone. While natural disasters affect the region frequently, as this region continues along its path of development, regional partnerships will be essential in developing the capacities of countries to reduce risk and vulnerability and to respond to disasters.
Volcanic Explosivity in Asia-Pacific
This map shows the density of volcanic eruptions based on the explosivity index for each eruption and the time period of the eruption. Eruption information is spread to 100km beyond point source to indicate areas that could be affected by volcanic emissions or ground shaking.
Risk assessment for an area exposed to multiple hazards requires solutions to compare the risks. This map was generated by adding the value of mortality to the cumulated risk of cyclones, earthquakes, floods and landslides. Categories of risk based on expected annual losses.
This product was designed by UNEP/GRID Europe for the Global Assessment Report on Risk Reduction (GAR). It was modeled using global data.
Credit: GIS processing UNEP/GRID-Europe. http://preview.grid.unep.ch