As experts warn of increasing disaster risk in the Asia Pacific region, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) highlighted the importance of international cooperation and collaboration to build resilience. This comes as the Philippines prepares to host the 2024 Asia Pacific Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction (APMCDRR) in October next year.

The DENR, together with the Department of National Defense are leading preparations for the Asia-Pacific region’s largest biennial conference on disaster risk reduction. It serves as the region’s primary platform for promoting coordination, cooperation, and accelerating the implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction.

“Science and technology are at the core of the disaster risk reduction. The learning shared during this conference will have an impact on our own knowledge base and enhance the Philippines’ disaster risk reduction and climate change mitigation initiatives,” said Environment Secretary Maria Antonia Yulo Loyzaga.

A report from the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) published last July flagged the risk of a ‘disaster emergency’ in the Asia-Pacific as rising temperatures continue to trigger more severe weather and climate conditions, unless there is immediate, fundamental action to build resilience. Moreover, while the Philippines has made significant progress in the areas of environmental protection, disaster risk reduction, and climate action, the country remains on top of the World Risk Index, and one of the top countries most vulnerable to hazards and the impacts of climate change.

To be held in Manila from October 14-17, 2024, the 2024 Asia Pacific Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction is expected to draw over 3,000 high-level delegates from various United Nations member-states.