10th - 11th February 2011

International Research Workshop on “Economics of Natural Disasters – Bridging Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Adaptation Efforts and Strategies”

  • Date: 10th - 11th February 2011
  • Location: ICCG, Island of San Giorgio Maggiore, Venice – Italy more info
  • Organized by: ICCG, FEEM, CMCC and IIASA
  • Information:

    angela.marigo@feem.it

Description:

The workshop will bring together social scientists from two so-far disconnected domains: i) analytical and probabilistic risk assessment of today’s natural hazards, and ii) adaptation to future climate extremes and disasters. During the workshop, the state-of-the-art knowledge and practice in assessment of economic costs imposed by natural hazard disasters will be critically reviewed and outstanding challenges and research needs will be identified. The workshop is meant to establish of a network of social scientists working on welfare effects of natural disasters, in current and future climate(s).

Background

Event promoted by the European Commission’s General Directorate (DG) Research, United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction UNISDR, the Academy of Sciences for the Developing World TWAS, and by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation UNESCO.

The event is organised by the International Center for Climate Governance, the Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei, the Euro-Mediterranean Centre for Climate Change and the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis.

Background and objectives

Over the past decades, the world witnessed a striking increase in the economic losses caused by natural disasters. While in principle natural hazards cannot be prevented, their impacts can be moderated if not avoided.
It is well established that rising population and economic growth are the major drivers in the trend of the observed losses. In the coming decades, anthropogenic climate change will very likely lead to more frequent and intense meteorological and climate extreme events (Parry et al., 2007) and thus further amplify the disaster losses, if no preventive actions are taken.
Disaster risk management addresses several global changes at the same time: First, it reduces the harm caused by natural disasters, and increase the ability of societies to respond, recover and develop. Second, it is vital for designing preventive measures to adapt to a changing climate.
However, an effective risk management necessitates accurate knowledge including key uncertainties of what is at stake. The knowledge about impacts of past disasters as well as current and future disaster risk is all but incomplete. At best, only direct losses are known and this only for some of the key sectors. Little attention is paid to indirect (knock-on) and intangible effects, albeit these together may exceed the direct losses.
As a consequence, actual and potential losses are underestimated and policy responses which are based on such data are insufficient or inadequate to mitigate the future disaster risks. Often, poor assessments of inflicted or potential losses favours primarily structural policy responses which, in the long run, may increase the sensitivity to disasters and further exacerbate the problem.

The workshop will bring together social scientists from two so-far disconnected domains: i) analytical and probabilistic risk assessment of today’s natural hazards, and ii) adaptation to future climate extremes and disasters. During the workshop, the state-of-the-art knowledge and practice in assessment of economic costs imposed by natural hazard disasters will be critically reviewed and outstanding challenges and research needs will be identified.

The workshop is meant to establish of a network of social scientists working on welfare effects of natural disasters, in current and future climate(s). As a follow-up activity, FEEM will develop a network platform enabling all members to exchange information about ongoing research and research outcomes, events and exchange of academic staff. The platform will be linked to the UNISDR preventionweb.int portal. The aforementioned network will be instrumental for facilitating the collaboration between the institutions the network members belong to. As a first step, a proposal to established a new EUROCORES research programme dealing with the Welfare effects of Natural Disasters will be discussed during the workshop. This proposal will include topics identified during the workshop as having highest priority for the sound risk assessment and evaluation of disaster risk reduction strategies/policies.

Secretariat

Ms. Angela Marigo
Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei
Isola di San Giorgio Maggiore
I-30124 Venice
Italy
Tel: +39 041 2700442
Fax: +39 041 2700413
E-mail: angela.marigo@feem.it

  • Agenda

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    PRE-EVENT: February 9 th, 2011

    18:30
    Welcome Cocktail at Caffè Vergnano (Rialto – Piazza dell’Erbaria, San Polo 129 Venice)

    DAY 1: February 10th, 2011

    09:00 – 09:30
    Welcome Address
    Carlo CARRARO, Ca’ Foscari University of Venice and FEEM, Italy

    Introduction, meeting objectives and motivations

    Jaroslav MYSIAK, FEEM and CMCC, Italy

    09:30 – 13:00

    Session 1: Natural disaster risk: trends, economic costs and key challenges

    Chair: Reinhard MECHLER

    Trend in Natural Disaster “EM-DAT Database”
    Debarati GUHA SAPIR, Centre for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters, Université Catholique de Louvain, Belgium

    A Trend Is a Trend Is a Trend: a Different View on Trend Estimation in Disaster Data

    Hans VISSER, PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency, The Netherlands

    Costs of Natural Hazards: Modelling Direct Economic Costs

    Heidi KREIBICH, Helmholtz-Zentrum Potsdam, Deutsches GeoForschungsZentrum, Germany

    Plenary discussion

    11.00 – 11.30
    Coffee Break

    World Disaster Report

    Josephine SHIELDS RECASSInternational Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, Switzerland

    Estimates of Extreme Weather Risk Trends and Future Changes

    Laurens BOUWER, Institute for Environmental Studies, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, The Netherlands

    Trends of Natural and Technological Hazards and Costs of Adaptation in Europe

    Stephane ISOARDEuropean Environment Agency, Denmark

    Plenary discussion

    13:00 – 14:00
    Lunch

    14:00 – 18:00

    Session 2: Adaptation to climate extremes: economic costs and key challenges

    Chair: Jaroslav MYSIAK

    Supporting Adaptation Assessments: Climate Extremes and the Challenges of Definition and Scale

    Clare GOODESSClimatic Research Unit, University of East Anglia, UK

    Climate Change and Global Damages from Tropical Cyclones

    Robert MENDELSOHN, Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, USA

    Modelling Indirect Economic Impacts and Risk

    Reinhard MECHLERVienna University of Economics and Business and International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, Austria

    Plenary discussion

    15:30 – 16.00
    Coffee Break

    Adaptation to Climate Extremes: Investigating the Role of the Private Sector – the Case of the Insurance Industry

    Swenja SURMINSKIGrantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment, London School of Economics and Political Science, UK

    Analysis of the Economic Costs of Climate Change Adaptation

    Paul WATKISS, Paul Watkiss Associates (PWA) and Global Climate Adaptation Partnership, UK

    Investigating the Uncertainty Surrounding Dangerous Climate Change: Revised estimates of the Social Cost of Carbon Dioxide

    Lucia VERGANOEuropean Commission, Joint Research Centre, Institute of Prospective Technological Studies, Economics of Climate Change, Energy and Transport Unit

    Plenary discussion

    20.00
    Social Dinner at Sangal Restaurant (San Marco 1089 Venice)
    – participation is upon invitation only –

    DAY 2: February 11th, 2011

    09:00 – 12:30
    Session 3: Disaster Economics for Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Adaptation – Positions

    Chair: Salvano BRICENO

    UNISDR Global Assessment Report 2011

    Salvano BRICENO, United Nations, International Strategy for Disaster Reduction, Switzerland

    Sound Urban Planning and Disaster Risk Managment

    Federica RANGHIERI, The World Bank, USA

    Linking Adaptation and Disaster Risk Reduction at the Operational Level: What Role Can Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA) Play?

    Victoria SCHREITTER, OECD, Paris

    Global Earthquake Model: Social and Economic Impact

    Leonardo GARRIDO, Global Earthquake Model, Italy

    10.30 – 11.00
    Coffee Break

    Bridging the Gap Between Stakeholders and Climate Modellers: Demand-Driven Assessment of Uncertain Changes in Weather Extremes

    Arthur PETERSEN, PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency, The Netherlands

    Investing in Nature Based Solutions

    Radhika MURTIInternational Union for Conservation of Nature, Switzerland

    Needs for a Better Integration of DRR and Climate Research Outputs into Policies

    Philippe QUEVAUVILLERUniversity of Brussels and the European Commission, Belgium

    Plenary discussion

    12.30 – 13.30
    Lunch

    13.30 – 15.00
    Final conclusions, follow-up activities, workshop report

    Jaroslav MYSIAKFEEM and CMCC, Italy

  • Presentations

    SESSION 1: Natural disaster risk: trends, economic costs and key challenges

    Debarati GUHA SAPIRCentre for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters, Université Catholique de Louvain, Belgium

    Trend in Natural Disaster “EM-DAT Database” [ presentation]

    Hans VISSERPBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency, The Netherlands
    A Trend Is a Trend Is a Trend: a Different View on Trend Estimation in Disaster Data
    [ presentation]

    Heidi KREIBICHHelmholtz-Zentrum Potsdam, Deutsches GeoForschungsZentrum, Germany
    Costs of Natural Hazards: Modelling Direct Economic Costs [ presentation]

    Josephine SHIELDS RECASSInternational Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, Switzerland

    World Disaster Report [ presentation]

    Laurens BOUWERInstitute for Environmental Studies, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, The Netherlands
    Estimates of Extreme Weather Risk Trends and Future Changes [ presentation]

    Stephane ISOARDEuropean Environment Agency, Denmark
    Trends of Natural and Technological Hazards and Costs of Adaptation in Europe
    [ presentation]

    SESSION 2: Adaptation to climate extremes: economic costs and key challenges

    Clare GOODESSClimatic Research Unit, University of East Anglia, UK
    Supporting Adaptation Assessments: Climate Extremes and the Challenges of Definition and Scale [ presentation]

    Robert MENDELSOHN, Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, USA
    Climate Change and Global Damages from Tropical Cyclones [ presentation]

    Reinhard MECHLERVienna University of Economics and Business and International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, Austria
    Modelling Indirect Economic Impacts and Risk [ presentation]

    Swenja SURMINSKIGrantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment, London School of Economics and Political Science, UK
    Adaptation to Climate Extremes: Investigating the Role of the Private Sector – the Case of the Insurance Industry [ presentation]

    Paul WATKISSPaul Watkiss Associates (PWA) and Global Climate Adaptation Partnership, UK
    Analysis of the Economic Costs of Climate Change Adaptation [ presentation]

    Lucia VERGANO European Commission, Joint Research Centre, Institute of Prospective Technological Studies, Economics of Climate Change, Energy and Transport Unit
    Investigating the Uncertainty Surrounding Dangerous Climate Change: Revised estimates of the Social Cost of Carbon Dioxide [ presentation]

    SESSION 3: Disaster Economics for Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Adaptation – Positions

    Salvano BRICENOUnited Nations, International Strategy for Disaster Reduction, Switzerland
    UNISDR Global Assessment Report 2011 [ presentation]

    Federica RANGHIERIThe World Bank, USA
    Sound Urban Planning and Disaster Risk Managment [ presentation]

    Victoria SCHREITTEROECD, Paris
    Linking Adaptation and Disaster Risk Reduction at the Operational Level: What Role Can Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA) Play? [ presentation]

    Leonardo GARRIDO Global Earthquake Model, Italy
    Global Earthquake Model: Social and Economic Impact [ presentation]

    Arthur PETERSENPBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency, The Netherlands
    Bridging the Gap Between Stakeholders and Climate Modellers: Demand-Driven Assessment of Uncertain Changes in Weather Extremes [ presentation]

    Radhika MURTIInternational Union for Conservation of Nature, Switzerland
    Investing in Nature Based Solutions [ presentation]

    Philippe QUEVAUVILLERUniversity of Brussels and the European Commission, Belgium
    Needs for a Better Integration of DRR and Climate Research Outputs into Policies
    [ presentation]

    Additional contribution and background readings