UN backs accountability on disaster losses

2 February 2017, NEW YORK/GENEVA – The United Nations General Assembly today adopted a resolution containing indicators for measuring global progress in reducing disaster losses.

The same resolution also includes a comprehensive A to Z overhaul of terminology related to disaster risk reduction to guide policymakers and decision-makers working on strategic plans for disaster risk management.

“This is a major achievement and a vote by UN Member States for accountability when it comes to taking action to reduce loss of life and economic losses, in the face of deadly climate change, risk-laden investment in infrastructure, poorly planned expansion of cities and towns, poverty, and continuing environmental decline,” the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Disaster Risk Reduction, Mr. Robert Glasser, said today.

UN Member States that adopted the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction in 2015 will now be able to measure their efforts to reduce disaster losses by 2030 including mortality, numbers of people affected, economic losses and damage to critical infrastructure such as water, transportation, telecommunications, schools and hospitals.

They will also seek to measure increases in international cooperation, national and local disaster risk reduction strategies and early warning systems.

“The adoption of these indicators covering the Sendai Framework targets is a first for the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda. It will greatly encourage everyone planning to attend the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction in Mexico this May to move ahead and adopt strong measures to invest in resilience and disaster prevention,” said Mr. Glasser.

The report of the open-ended international expert working group on indicators and terminology relating to disaster risk reduction is now available online at


About UNISDR: UNISDR is the UN office dedicated to disaster risk reduction. It is led by the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Disaster Risk Reduction and supports implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 which seeks “the substantial reduction of disaster risk and losses, in lives, livelihoods and health and in the economic, physical, social, cultural and environmental assets of persons, businesses, communities and countries.”

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