Preventive Measures and Disaster Preparedness Will Lead to Economic Growth
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9 August 2008: In an opinion piece, published in the Hindu, Vinod Thomas, Director General of the World Bank’s Independent Evaluation Group, underscores the increased frequency of natural disasters, their effect on development, and the need for policy makers to recognize this growing threat on economies.

He notes that disasters have increasingly man-made causes and […]

9 August 2008: In an opinion piece, published in the Hindu,
Vinod Thomas, Director General of the World Bank’s Independent Evaluation
Group, underscores the increased frequency of natural disasters, their effect
on development, and the need for policy makers to recognize this growing threat
on economies.

He notes that disasters have increasingly man-made causes and
that safeguarding the environment is required for long-term growth. He provides
an overview of available data on the frequency of disasters and the consequent
losses, focusing on the case of India. He argues that addressing man-made
causes of disasters is a priority, including by protecting wetlands and
forests, and notes that timely action can lead to increased resilience and
preparedness. He underlines, however, that despite the high payoffs of
prevention, current funding for these actions is insufficient. Thomas then
calls for increased capacity in prevention and preparedness in India, enhanced
links between planning and budgeting, and improved coordination between
government agencies, as well as with civil society. He concludes that
preventive measures and disaster preparedness will reduce disaster risk, which
is indispensible for sustained growth. [The
opinion piece
]

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