One third of the development expenses is lost due to lack of resilience, according to a report.

One dollar out of every three dollar in development funding is lost as a result of recurrent crises, according to the World bank that has revealed that over the last 30 years, total development losses as a result of recurring crises represent $3.8 trillion worldwide.

The rising toll of climate change combined with population growth means more people stand in harm’s way, and many of them are already poor or vulnerable, said US ambassador Peter Bodde, shared addressing the Summit addressing a Resilience Summit organised by The US Mission in Nepal, through the US Agency for International Development (USAID), here in the valley today.

The number of weather-related disasters has tripled in the last 30 years. The year 2013 was the year with the most disasters. The unprecedented flooding and landslides affecting thousands of Nepalis – already among the most vulnerable – across the country are examples of increasing weather-and climate-change induced disasters, he said, adding that in Nepal, over two million people live on potentially hazardous fault lines, where earthquakes could cause severe damage.

“Resilience is essential, if we are to win the fight against poverty,” Bodde, shared. “We know we cannot prevent floods and landslides, but we can work much harder and more strategically to ensure these shocks don’t devastate families or set back hard-won development gains.”

The US Mission in Nepal – through the US Agency for International Development (USAID) – today also announced three new programmes with up to $70 million in funds that will help communities more quickly recover from natural disasters and other stressors.

The envoy announced three resilience projects –  community resilience programme, early warning flooding system, and science and technology competition for resilience – at the summit to help Nepal.

Up to $70 million Community Resilience Programme is an integration in disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation into USAID’s food and nutrition security efforts in Nepal. “A quarter of Nepal’s population lives below the international poverty line of $1.25-per-day,” he said, adding that the programme will benefit an estimated five million of the most vulnerable in hilly regions.

Under the $500,000 Innovative Early Warning Flooding System, the USAID’s Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance will fund an early warning system to help protect communities in the Eastern region from flooding, he said, adding that the project will install gauges along flood-prone rivers and share real-time data with district authorities using SMS and email. “It will help save lives in the event of flood.”

Likewise, a $100,000 Science and Technology Competition for Resilience programme is a call for bold and innovative solutions to ‘building sustainable food security’ in Nepal. “The competition opens on September 4, and will be open to individuals, non-profits, academic institutions, and the private sector, with a focus on districts primarily in the Mid- and Far-West regions of the country,” Bodde added in the summit.

The summit brought together government officials and development experts to look for new models to solve complex and interrelated challenges like extreme poverty, food security, and climate shocks. Working under the leadership of the government, the US government aims at saving and improving more lives, building inclusive economic growth, and decreasing the need for humanitarian assistance.

“The government sees resilience as a vital framework to help alleviate poverty and promote more sustainable development, lessening the impacts of disasters,” said chief guest at the Resilience Summit vice chair of National Planning Commission Dr GovindaPokhrel. “That will take creativity, innovation, and cross-sectoral partnerships, and we are pleased that USAID is highlighting the most important priority.”

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