Tag: crisis management

Paris: Seine flood

Paris should prepare now for risk of a costly Seine flood

January 24, 2014, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)

Quote press-release:

“24/01/2014 – A major flooding of the Seine River similar to the flood disaster of 1910 could affect up to 5 million residents in the greater Paris area and cause up to 30 billion euros worth of damage, according to a new OECD report. Economic growth, jobs and public finances could also be significantly affected.

The OECD Review on Flood Risk Management of the Seine River – commissioned by the Basin Organisation Seine Grands Lacs with the French Ministry of Ecology and Ile-de-France regional council – recommends that city officials work to raise risk awareness among citizens and businesses and improve the resilience of the metropolitan area to flood risks.

Recent floods in Europe and New York City’s Hurricane Sandy disaster in 2012 illustrated the vulnerability of today’s ever-denser cities to flooding and the need to adapt critical infrastructure systems to be able to cope with extreme weather events. The 1910 Paris flood took several weeks to subside.

“The impact on Paris of a major flood would be much greater today than a century ago, with serious economic and social consequences on top of the temporary disruption and material losses,” said Rolf Alter, Director of the OECD’s Public Governance and Territorial Development Directorate. “The better Paris prepares itself to manage this risk and improve its resilience, the less vulnerable it will be, to the benefit of the city and the country.” Read more >

Read Executive summary

German Framework for Flood Risk Management

The German federal state of Rheinland-Pfalz is well advanced in its programme of actions required to comply with the provisions of the EU Flood Directive. So far, the preliminary flood risk assessments; the flood hazard maps; and, the flood risk maps have been completed for the entire state. In early 2011, the flood risk management plans for the River Nahe (4.000 km.) catchment were commenced.

These follow the framework set out in the German LAWA-directive “Recommendations for the Establishment of Flood Risk Management Plans” which includes a comprehensive guide to all the diverse action areas that occur in the flood risk management cycle. Appropriate policy objectives have been set and strategies formulated.

Making cities resilient

“Cities and local governments need to get ready, reduce the risks and become resilient to disasters. For the next two years and beyond, the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UNISDR) will campaign together with its partners for this to happen.

The 2010-2011 World Disaster Reduction Campaign “Making Cities Resilient” addresses issues of local governance and urban risk while drawing upon previous ISDR Campaigns on safer schools and hospitals, as well as on the sustainable urbanizations principles developed in the UN-Habitat World Urban Campaign 2009-2013.”

Source: United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction

The risk management of nothing

Author: Michael Power, London School of Economics and Political Science
Source: Accounting, Organizations and Society 34 (2009) 849–855, Elsevier

This essay challenges core elements of enterprise risk management (ERM) and suggests that an impoverished conception of ‘risk appetite’ is part of the ‘intellectual failure’ at the heart of the financial crisis. Regulators, senior management and boards must understand risk appetite more as the consequence of a dynamic organizational process involving values as much as metrics.

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#1 State of the Union EU

“You can trust the European Union to do what it takes to secure your future”

Source: European Commission
Speech: President José Manuel Barroso

Commission President José Manuel Barroso set out his strategic plans for the EU over the next year in his State of the Union speech to the European Parliament.
“My message to each and every European is that you can trust the European Union to do what it takes to secure your future,” he said. The EU’s economic outlook is better than one year ago and is improving, President Barroso told Parliament. Growth will be higher than forecast. Unemployment was no longer increasing. “But our work is not finished,” he added. “We must accelerate our reform agenda.”

Over the next 12 months the Commission plans to bring forward new legislation on improved economic governance in the EU, job skills, tackling poverty and exclusion, cutting red tape for small businesses and removing obstacles to trading on the EU’s single market.

Read the full speech

Read the comment in the Economist: Charlemagne’s notebook: How many presidents does it take to run Europe?

Lomborg: Europe’s determination to decline

Looking closely into the exact correlation of factors is half the work of good public risk management. Bjørn Lomborg lines out how economic crisis and managing climate related targets are interrelated. So called advantages are not always how appear to be, more than that they slow down a development.

Source: Politiken.dk
By Bjørn Lomborg, head of the Copenhagen Consensus Center, and adjunct professor at Copenhagen Business School

“In a heroic case of finding a silver lining in the bleakest of all situations, the European Union climate commissioner has concluded that the global economic crisis and recession actually provided a lucky break for everyone.

Commissioner Connie Hedegaard says that the slowdown in economic activity will make it easier for the EU to achieve its 2020 goal of ensuring that greenhouse-gas emissions are 20% below their 1990 level. In fact, Hedegaard believes that cutting emissions has become so easy that European leaders should be more ambitious and unilaterally aim for a 30% reduction below the 1990 level – an idea that has won support from David Cameron’s new British government.” Read more >

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