Colombia advances with a new resilient recovery strategy for disaster management

May 31, 2024

Colombia’s new disaster recovery strategy

Colombia is taking a significant step towards implementing a National Resilient Recovery Strategy, adapted to climate change and with a community focus.

As reported by UNGRD, this strategy aims to establish clear guidelines for the National System on developing effective post-disaster recovery processes without creating new risk conditions.

Historically, Colombia has faced numerous disasters, including the Tumaco earthquake (1979), the Armero tragedy (1985), and more recent events in Mocoa (2017) and Providencia (2020).

However, past recovery efforts have often been ineffective, with unclear roles for sectors and territories.

The new strategy, developed by the Unidad Nacional para la Gestión del Riesgo de Desastres (UNGRD) and the Departamento Nacional de Planeación (DNP), seeks to address these issues.

Community-focused recovery

The new strategy, named “National Resilient Recovery Strategy and Adapted to Climate Change with a Community Focus,” was discussed and refined during an extraordinary session of the three Technical Advisory Commissions for Risk Knowledge, Risk Reduction, and Disaster Management.

Its goal is to provide clear guidance for the Sistema Nacional de Gestión del Riesgo de Desastres (SNGRD) in developing recovery processes at national and territorial levels.

The strategy will serve as a tool for entities, territorial administrations, and communities to implement effective post-disaster recovery actions with a focus on resilience within the framework of sustainable development.

This is particularly important given the rapid urbanization and vulnerabilities faced by cities, which increase the likelihood of emergencies and disasters.

Alignment with national plans

The development and implementation of this strategy align with the Plan Nacional de Gestión del Riesgo de Desastres 2015-2030 and the current Plan Nacional de Desarrollo 2022-2026.

The document is expected to be validated by the National Technical Committees and approved by the Consejo Nacional de Gestión del Riesgo de Desastres, the highest governing body of the National System.

Following this, it will seek adoption through a presidential decree later this year.

The National Resilient Recovery Strategy and Adapted to Climate Change is integrated with the National Emergency Response Strategy, establishing a clear connection between immediate response and medium to long-term recovery.

This comprehensive approach aims to ensure a more effective and sustainable recovery in the face of the challenges posed by disasters and emergencies in Colombia.

Future steps and implementation

The validation and approval process of the strategy is a critical next step.

Once approved, it will provide a robust framework for managing disaster recovery efforts across Colombia.

The integration with national development plans underscores the government’s commitment to resilience and sustainable development.

The comprehensive nature of this strategy is expected to enhance the effectiveness of disaster recovery, ensuring that communities can rebuild stronger and more resiliently.

The focus on clear guidelines and community involvement is aimed at reducing future risks and improving the overall disaster management process in Colombia.

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