Disaster-related losses of ecosystems and their services. Why and how do losses matter for disaster risk reduction?

Walz, Yvonne, Janzen, Sally, Narvaez, Liliana, Ortiz-Vargas, Andrea, Woelki, Jacob, Doswald, Nathalie and Sebesvari, Zita, (2021). Disaster-related losses of ecosystems and their services. Why and how do losses matter for disaster risk reduction?. International Journal for Disaster Risk Reduction, 63(102425), 1-16

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  • Sub-type Journal article
    Author Walz, Yvonne
    Janzen, Sally
    Narvaez, Liliana
    Ortiz-Vargas, Andrea
    Woelki, Jacob
    Doswald, Nathalie
    Sebesvari, Zita
    Title Disaster-related losses of ecosystems and their services. Why and how do losses matter for disaster risk reduction?
    Appearing in International Journal for Disaster Risk Reduction
    Volume 63
    Issue No. 102425
    Publication Date 2021-09
    Place of Publication Amsterdam
    Publisher Elsevier B.V.
    Start page 1
    End page 16
    Language eng
    Abstract Climate-related hazards, more specifically droughts, floods and storms, cause the largest share of people affected by disasters and major economic losses. While social and economic disaster-related losses are monitored and documented, this is not well established for the environmental losses. It is well known that environmental degradation is a key driver of disaster risk. As such, healthy ecosystems are acknowledged to contribute to disaster risk reduction (DRR) through their ecosystem services (ES). Yet they are at the same time heavily affected by disasters. Disaster-related losses of ecosystems and their services as well as the implication on overall DRR are not well understood. To address this knowledge gap, this research builds on a structured review of peer-reviewed literature and Post-Disaster Needs Assessments (PDNAs) to generate scientific evidence of disaster-related losses of ecosystems and ES to the climate-related hazards droughts, floods and storms. The established database of disaster-related losses of ecosystems provided the basis to further explore the link between disaster-related losses of ecosystems and related losses of ES. An additional review of scientific literature delivered evidence that losses of ES are many times higher than documented so far. In order to better understand, how disaster-related losses of ecosystems and ES ultimately alter disaster risk, we showcase the link between disaster-related losses of ecosystems and their services against the three dimensions of disaster risk. Regulating ES reduce disaster risk through mitigating hazard and exposure. Provisioning, regulating, habitat and cultural ES help to reduce vulnerability. Disasters diminish the capacity of ecosystems to provide ES, which leads to increasing disaster risk. We conclude this research with three constructive recommendations for integrating disaster-related losses of ecosystems and ES in a more comprehensive manner into disaster risk monitoring – notably the monitoring structure of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction. The aim of these recommendations is to support a more comprehensive monitoring of disaster-related losses including the environmental dimension and better acknowledge the role and contribution of ecosystems for advancing DRR.
    Keyword Climate-related hazards
    Forest
    Wetland
    Biodiversity
    Loss
    Sendai Framework Monitor
    Copyright Holder The Authors
    Copyright Year 2021
    Copyright type Creative commons
    DOI 10.1016/j.ijdrr.2021.102425
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    Created: Mon, 09 Aug 2021, 23:34:30 JST by Aarti Basnyat on behalf of UNU EHS