460m African people affected by natural disasters since 1970 – UN
Ms Amina Mohammed, UN Deputy Secretary-General says no fewer than 460 million people in Africa were affected by natural disasters since 1970.
Mohammed stated this in her remarks to United Nations World Data Forum in Dubai, also said that natural disaster cost 330 billion dollars in 2017.
“Since 1970, natural disasters have affected the lives of more than 460 million people in Africa.
“Many lives and livelihoods could have been saved with better data and forecasting.
“And in more than two thirds of countries, there is a lack of gender dis aggregated data on violence against women.
“Our task is to make sure data is available to all people,” the deputy UN chief said.
She said the world must make sure data were harnessed to support implementation of the 2030 agenda at all levels and in all regions and countries.
Mohammed said: “Data on disaster preparedness and early warning systems can save lives and livelihoods.
“Last year, natural disasters cost 330 billion dollars. Better data can help avoid some of these losses”.
She said Mexico’s earthquake early warning system had issued 158 alerts since 1993, significantly reducing the potential impact.
According to her, robust and accessible data and information can provide a host of other benefits.
“It means students can find out about job opportunities and women can learn about laws protecting them from discrimination.
“It means citizens can monitor how their governments are performing and hold decision-makers to account.
“It can strengthen trust in public institutions and unveil new opportunities.
“For example, in Buenos Aires, Google data suggests that rooftop solar potential is equal to about 946,000 tonnes of avoided emissions a year – which is the equivalent of taking 200,000 cars off the road.
“But, while it is clear that the data revolution is having an enormous impact, it has not benefited everyone equally,” she said.
Mohammed said the United Nations was leading global efforts to integrate data and information systems.