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These pages and sections capture news of climate change and stories about the groundswell of climate action by governments, companies, cities, the UN and civil society around the globe. To provide feedback, email us at press@unfccc.int Photo©Naziha Mestaoui

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At least 87 countries should systematically account for disaster losses by 2020, which first and foremost constitute losses resulting from the impacts of climate change. This is the central conclusion of the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction which ended in Cancun, Mexico last Friday.

2020 is the deadline set out in the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction for all countries to have such strategies. In the 22 years that have passed since first UN Climate Change Conference (COP1, in 1995 in Berlin) the number of weather and climate related disasters has doubled.

The UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR), Mr. Robert Glasser, said: “We can only prove progress on reducing disaster losses if we know accurately what those losses are. Today we heard evidence that these countries are putting data baselines in place and this effort needs intensive support over the next two years.”

Given that 90% of recorded major disasters are climate-related, action that addresses the interlinked challenges of disaster risk, sustainable development and climate change is a core priority.

Reducing greenhouse gas emissions is the ultimate form of disaster risk reduction as it prevents the creation of new risk while also reducing the stock of existing risk levels.

The Paris Climate Change Agreement’s overarching goal to limit global average temperature rise to as close as possible to 1.5 degrees Celsius. Adhering to this goal is the greatest long-term contribution that governments, local governments and the private sector can make to disaster risk reduction.

Ahead of the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction in Cancun, UNISDR chief Glasser and the Executive Secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) , Patricia Espinosa, called for joint action across the 2030 Agenda and the Paris Agreement on climate change to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and address Disaster Risk Reduction. See their joint op-ed here.

Read more about the outcomes of the Cancun meeting in the relevant UNIDSR press release

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