On the occasion of the International Day for Disaster Reduction, ICCG is pleased to announce the outcomes of 2017 Best Climate Practices Award on “Building resilience to climate disaster risk”.
The International Day for Disaster Reduction highlights how people and communities around the world are reducing their exposure to disaster risk. Therefore, there couldn’t be a better opportunity to showcase the brilliant and determined candidates of this year’s edition of the Best Climate Practices Award.
Low-income countries and small islands are the most endangered by climate change impacts, but local communities in both cities and rural areas are exposed to disaster risk in the richest and most developed countries as well. Environmental degradation and socioeconomic factors like poverty and urban population growth contribute to increase communities’ vulnerability to natural hazards.
For these reasons, the Best Climate Practices Observatory, a project launched by ICCG in 2012, chose to dedicate the 2017 edition of the Best Climate Practices Award (this year’s at its fifth edition) to the theme “Building resilience to climate disaster risk”. The aim is to award and promote actionable ideas and concrete projects designed to support urban and rural communities in preparing and responding to climate disasters, improving local resilience, preparedness and recovery capacity.
Out of +200 proposals received, 19 shortlisted candidates were selected for the evaluation process carried out through online voting polls on the Best Climate Practices platform and the assessment of the 2017 Expert Panel composed by six high-profile experts from international universities and organisations, this year featuring: Carlo Carraro (ICCG, GGKP and Ca’ Foscari University of Venice), Paola Albrito (United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, UNISDR), Elisa Calliari (Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei), Federica Ranghieri (World Bank), Reinhard Mechler (International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, IIASA) and Knud Falk (Red Cross Red Crescent Climate Centre).
The Expert Panel unanimously elected the project “Balangay Legazpi” as the winner of the Best Climate Practices 2017 Award, confirming the ranking obtained by combining jury members’ assessment and the on-line vote of our website’s visitors.
Balangay Legazpi is a free cloud-based information system to help communities in Philippines prepare for natural calamities, reducing exposure and vulnerability to disaster risk. The developer is a young web agency, Layertech Software Labs, directed by Frei Sangil and aimed to create socially relevant, tech-based solutions. First implemented in the City of Legazpi, Balangay mobile and web application provides a real-time platform for reliable communication between local government units, academy, private sector, civil society organizations (CSOs), non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and affected communities. Balangay offers a hazard map, allowing users to see susceptibility of their current location to various hazards, dictionary of Disaster Risk Reduction and Management (DRRM) terms, survival kit articles and official emergency hotlines.
The 2017 Best Climate Practices winner will receive the prize of 3000 Euros.
The Expert Panel also assigned Special Mentions to two other projects for their high potential of helping vulnerable communities in facing extreme climate-related events such as floods and droughts.
The first Special Mention of the Jury was assigned to the project Amphibious Housing, a building method promoted by the Canadian Buoyant Foundation Project (BFP) and applied in Vietnam’s Mekong Delta, a region experiencing increasingly unpredictable and destructive flooding. The project Amphibious Housing was given a Special Mention because of its innovative application of technologies to enhance resilience in flood-prone areas.
A second Special Mention of the Jury has been granted to the project “Promoting Water Stewardship for water and food security in semi-arid regions“, for its behavioral approach addressing the social inclusiveness dimension of Disaster Risk Reduction and for its capacity to increase active engagement of communities living in water-scarce regions. The Water Stewardship Initiative is developed by Watershed Organization Trust (WOTR) and includes water budgeting, micro irrigation for agriculture, weather-related crop-advisories delivered to farmers via SMS and daily monitoring of rainfall through rain gauges.
The ICCG Best Climate Practices team is grateful to all participants for their amazing enthusiasm in joining the contest and sharing their remarkable projects with the BCP community.
The best projects and ideas participating in the 2017 Best Climate Practices Award on “Building resilience to climate disaster risk” will be presented on November 8, during a web-conference in conjunction with COP23. Further information about the web-conference will be posted on ICCG website.