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Workshop on Risk Management Capability Assessment

14th - 15th December 2017, Ispra, Italy

 

Rationale

The Decision No 1313/2013/EU on a Union Civil Protection Mechanism (UCPM) aims to promote a culture of prevention and preparedness, emphasising the development of capacities to deal with risk. To that end, Member States should share with the European Commission the results of their national risk assessments and of the assessment of their Risk Management Capability every three years. In order to support countries in the latter, the Risk Management Capability Assessment Guidelines (Commission Notice 2015/C 261/03) propose a flexible methodology to evaluate the administrative, technical and financial capacities of countries to carry out risk assessments and plan and implement risk prevention and preparedness measures.

Risk Management Capability is defined in these guidelines as "the ability of a Member State or its regions to reduce, adapt to or mitigate risks identified in its risk assessments to levels that are acceptable in that Member State". The broad scope of the guidelines facilitates a generic evaluation of the capability of the country to face risk as a first approach to understand which capabilities are in place and which are lacking. However, the methodology proposed does not go into detail how the results of the risk assessments are actually used in the evaluation of capabilities, limiting the use of it for the proposal of measure to face the potential events identified. Likewise, if the goal is to promote systems that are resilient, it is necessary to cover all the phases of the Disaster Risk Management (DRM) cycle, including response and recovery[1].

The use of capability assessment to link the results of the risk assessment with the definition of risk management actions is systematic for some countries such as the Netherlands[2], UK[3] or Sweden[4], but not evident for other Member States[5]. The guidelines have been tested several times already:  the DG ECHO co-funded project "From Gaps to Caps"[6] used them as a reference point to develop a common understanding of capability assessment methods for the Baltic Sea Region based on the use of scenarios, exercises and real experience; and the 2016 EU peer review of Estonia[7] focused on risk management capability.

Objectives and Outcomes

The workshop aims to boost the link between risk assessment exercises and DRM planning through the intermediate step between both: the risk management capability assessment (RMCA). In particular the objectives are:

  • Facilitate the preparation of the risk management capabilities assessment that needs to be shared with the European Commission, as stated in the Decision on a Union Civil Protection Mechanism.
  • Exchange information and lessons learned on methodologies and resources that could be used in order to plan and implement measures to deal with disaster risk.
  • Stimulate and clarify linkages between risk assessment and other activities to manage risk, in particular with the definition and implementation of policies.

The expected outcomes are:

  • Increased understanding of the concept of "capabilities" and the process of "capability assessment" as a tool for linking risk assessments and disaster risk management plans.
  • Reached a common understanding on the information of the RMCA to provide to the European Commission.
  • Complemented the existing Guidelines with new insight and lessons learned.
  • Identified practices that could be tested in new contexts, such as exploiting the synergies between DRR and CCAA communities, and activities that could be developed to support Member States in evaluating their national capacities.

Approach

The workshop will be a space for Member States to share and discuss experiences in carrying out capability assessments and to plan measures to manage risk. The workshop will be divided in three sessions: two cases would be hazard specific (floods and pandemics) and the third would tackle cases of multi-hazard and the link with climate change adaptation, such as the Actions plans formulated in the initiative Covenant of Mayor for Climate & Energy[8]. Having in mind the Risk Management Capability Assessment Guidelines, the case studies would analyse the technical, financial and administrative capacities that should be in place to reduce the probability and consequences of flood and pandemic events. It would be encouraged the analysis of all four stages of DRM: prevention/mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery.

The workshop would be addressed to:

  • Policy makers related to Disaster Risk Reduction, in particular to the ones engaged in implementing disaster risk management plans.
  • Technical and scientific personnel from the Civil Protection or any other agency in charge of assessing risk and/or performing RMCA.
  • Staff from the Finance Ministry, involved in the formulation and implementation of policies to reduce disaster risk.

We particularly encourage the participation of personnel with the mentioned profiles and related with experience in flood or pandemics management.

 

[1] Mitchell, T. and Harris, K. (2012). Resilience: a risk management approach.

[2] Following the National Safety and Security Strategy (Programma Nationale Veiligheid 2007).

[3] Based on the National Resilience Capabilities Programme (2013).

[4] The Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency (MSB) (2016). A summary of risk areas and scenario analyses 2012–2015.

[5] Commission Staff Working Document Overview of Natural and Man-made Disaster Risks the European Union may face.

[6] http://www.gapstocaps.eu/2017/01/31/final-report/

[7] http://ec.europa.eu/echo/sites/echo-site/files/estonia_peer_review_report_-_en.pdf

[8] http://www.covenantofmayors.eu/index_en.html

Workshop Outcomes

 

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  • Day #1, Thursday 14 December 2017

  • Tom De Grove European Commission (DG JRC) https://ec.europa.eu/jrc
     
  • Montserrat Marin Ferrer European Commission (DG JRC) https://ec.europa.eu/jrc
     
  • Session 1: Flood events

  • Ioannis Kavvadas Directorate-General for Environment (DG ENV) http://ec.europa.eu/dgs/environment/
     
  • Clemens Neuhold Austrian Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, Environment and Water Management (BML FUW) https://www.bmlfuw.gv.at
    The presentation „administrative and financial capacities in Austria“ focuses on the natural hazard “flood”. First, it outlines the topographical and administrative boundary conditions in Austria. There is a broad variety of topographical characteristics which requires different sets of measures in the frame of flood risk management. From an administrative perspective Austria is a federal state, dividing responsibilities amongst the Federal state, the provinces, the districts, the municipalities and to the citizens. It has to be highlighted that most of the work done in the frame of emergency management is done on voluntary basis. The Water law as well as the flood protection funding law are in the competence of the Federal State. Legislation accounting for more regional characteristics within flood risk management e.g. spatial planning, building codes, and emergency management are in the competence of the federal provinces with a coordination part for emergency management for the federal state. All relevant sectors are bundled in an advisory board discussing relevant steps in the frame of implementing the EU floods directive. The implementation in Austria is set up as a strategic planning tool accounting for existing and well-functioning regional and local planning and implementation instruments. Flood protection is one of these instruments. The overall investments by the federal state, the provinces and municipalities (usually co-financing flood protection measures) are approximately 400 Mio. € / year to maintain and extend the existing schemes to ensure a flood protection level against a 100-years flood event. Complementary measures in the frame of awareness raising, spatial planning, building codes and emergency management are especially foreseen to reduce the residual risk and are mostly implemented as a bundle of measures together with green and grey infrastructure.
  • Jose Garcia Rodriguez Segura River Basin Organization (ES) https://www.chsegura.es/chs/index.html
    The presentation pretends to show Risk Management Capability in Spain from the point of view of the process of implementation of the Floods Directive. For this purpose, the main administrative and financial elements arranged along the process are presented, along with an overview of the technical ones: legal and procedure framework, responsibilities, coordination, information and communication, financial resources and methodologies and tools used. It is highlighted how the legal framework has aided to comply with the mandate of the Floods Directive, being able to consider one of the recent regulations- the amendment of the Hydraulic Public Domain Regulation- as a key measure to enhance flood risk in spatial planning and urban development. Regarding responsibilities and procedures, it is exposed its distribution among the different authorities and other agents involved in risk management: the River Basin Authority, in close collaboration with Civil Protection Authorities, is responsible of the Preliminary Flood Risk Assessment and Hazard and Risk Mapping; and responsibility on Flood Risk Management Planning (FRMP) and its implementation is shared with the regional and local Administrations as well as the CP Authorities and other central government institutions. It is also addressed the Coordination at different levels, national and river basin district and the information and communication tools arranged such as public consultation, conferences, brochures; and finally a reference is made to the financial resources used and those planned to use, giving some figures about the investment done and the short-term previsions till the end of the current cycle (2016-2021). Also, some details about the technical capacities are being exposed: information collected and its sources, and methodology used for doing the preliminary flood risk assessment and producing the flood hazard and risk maps ( historical, cartographic, hydrographic and geomorphologic data, as well as hydrological and hydraulic studies). A second part of the presentation deals with showing a sample of the main measures from the FRMPs that are being implemented: prevention measures, as the afore mentioned regulations related to land-use limitations on flood prone areas, guidance documents on flood adaptation of economic activities and uses located on those areas; preparedness measures, as holding conferences and providing brochures to increase flood risk awareness and improving flood warning and communications protocols; and as protections measures, a fluvial restoration and green infrastructure project on the Arga river (Ebro RBD). Finally, a brief comment is done on the follow-up of the implementation of measures and accomplishment of objectives.
  • Session 2: Epidemic events

  • Margherita Fanos Health and Food Safety (DG SANTE) https://ec.europa.eu/info/departments/health-and-food-safety_en
    Prepared and response to serious cross-border health threats Infectious disease threats know no borders and can severely affect human health, with severe cross-border public health implications. At EU level, Decision 1082/2013/EU on serious cross-border threats to health provides the framework to improve preparedness and strengthen surveillance, monitoring, and the capacity to coordinate response to health emergencies across the EU. Decision 1082/2013/EU extended the scope of cross-border health threats, including threats of biological, chemical, environmental and unknown origin. Under this framework, the Commission closely cooperates with Member States, EU agencies, in particular the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), and international partners. In the area of preparedness, Member States and the Commission consult for coordinating efforts to develop, strengthen and maintain capacities for monitoring, early warning and assessment of and response to serious cross-border health threats. In the area of response, the Early Warning and Response System provides the platform for Member States to be in permanent communication to alert, assess public health risks and determine the measures that may be required to protect public health. National response and risk communication is coordinated through the Health Security Committee, which is the crisis management body composed of health authorities of EU Member States.
  • Fernando Simon Soria Centre for Coordination of Alerts and Emergencie, Ministry of Health (CCAES) (ES) https://www.msssi.gob.es/
    Technical capacities to deal with epidemic risk in Spain. Fernando Simón Soria (Coordinating Centre for Health Alerts and Emergencies, Ministry of Health, Social Services and Equality) Usually, the health sector is part of the multisectoral “civil protection” response to disasters by assuring healthcare to affected population and establishing ad-hoc epidemic surveillance and prevention programmes. However, when infectious diseases are a primary threat, response is rarely integrated within the “civil protection framework”, and because of its specifics singularities, response responsibility in such situations lays on Health Authorities. The presentation highlighted the varying origins and characteristics of infectious disease threats and detailed the key elements for public health risk assessment (severity of the event, vulnerability of the population, probability of introduction, exposure and transmission and the availability of control measures) and the importance of risk detection capacity. Lessons learnt from last major health alerts and crisis in Spain related to Ebola outbreak in West Africa, Zika epidemic in South America and first diagnosis of Crimea-Congo Haemorrhagic Fever in Spain, included constant need for response protocol update, integration and coordination of Public Health and Healthcare systems, the importance of timely and quality rapid risk assessments and the need for improving the risk communication capacities among health professional and their coordination with communication experts. Developing infectious disease threats generic preparedness plans compatible with other EU those in other Member States would contribute to improve national and international response capacities.
  • Jim Kronhamn Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency (MSB)https://www.msb.se/en/
    I will start by giving a context to the work by showing the history of methodology development and assessment work that has been carried out over the last few years in Sweden. My presentation will focus on the Swedish governance model and the chosen approach to capability assessment in the risk management process and will raise some challenges and uncertainties with regards to how to approach the task and how we’d like to see it develop in order to be useful in a broader union perspective. As the Swedish approach to capability assessment includes other inputs than the scenario assessments and has an all hazards approach, I will explain how this is carried out, but also what we experience is lacking in our approach. Throughout my presentation I will give a few examples relating to the assessment of pandemic risk.
  • Day #2, Thursday 15 December 2017

  • Session 3: Building capacities for CCA and DRR

  • Paulo Barbosa European Commission (DG JRC)https://ec.europa.eu/jrc
     
  • Joao Dinis Municipality of Cascais (CASCAIS) (PT)https://www.cascais.pt/
    Cascais, Portugal, started working on climate change in late 2009. The local strategy was one of the very first in Portugal and even Europe. It provided a deep assessment on climate change impacts in different sectors of the local environment and society. With short to long term scenarios, the local council started an active work on climate action, fulfilling gaps with EU based projects and national reach initiatives on environmental sector. Despite its relevant impact, action assessment was relatively unknown which collided with the intentions to further adaptive capacity and stakeholder engagement. Hence, based on the acquired knowledge from all implemented projects, Cascais developed in 2017 the first Portuguese Adaptation Action plan to Climate Chance. The action plan updated climate scenarios and provided guidance in 80 individual actions to increase local resilience until 2030. This was a step forward in climate scenarios, stakeholder engagement, citizen awareness and strategy assessment (monitoring).
    Paulo Pais Municipality of Lisbon (PT)http://www.cm-lisboa.pt/en
    Lisbon geographic location, combined with a rugged terrain, put particular vulnerabilities in future climate scenarios, such as floods or urban heatwaves. Climate scenarios, combined with demographic scenarios, place particular emphasis on a holistic strategy for adapting to climate change In 2008 was approved the “Energy-environmental Strategy for Lisbon”, focused on climate change mitigating effects, which influenced the Master Plan revision strategy (2012), mainly the environmental efficiency and mobility policies. But the Master Plan went further, incorporating adaptation measures to climate change. The Municipality approved the “Lisbon Drainage Master Plan, 2016-2030”, an investment of 178 M€, which combines heavy hydraulic solutions and natural base solutions to mitigate the floods effects. The Municipal Strategy for Adapting to Climate Change, approved in 2017, was developed by the municipal services, integrated in a network of 26 Portuguese municipalities, ClimAdaPT.Local, coordinated by the University of Lisbon. In 2017, we developed scenarios of sea level rise effects for 2050 and 2010, under the coordination of the Faculty of Sciences of the University of Lisbon, to integrate in the future Master and Action Plans. In Lisbon we have chosen to take a holistic approach in the formulation of strategies and actions on climate change.
  • Leendert Gooijer National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) (NL)www.rivm.nl
    The National Risk Assessment (NRA) and the Capability assessment are parts of the Safety and security strategy of the Netherlands. In 2016 the National Risk Profile has been compiled by the National Network of Safety and Security Analysts. The profile provides an overview of the risks of various disasters, crises and threats with a possible destabilizing effect on the society and also describes the relevant autonomous developments (e.g. climate change and the possible effects on flooding and extreme weather). The National Risk Profile constitutes a basis for the capability assessment. The aim of the capability assessment is to get an overview the potential space to improve relevant existing capabilities or to develop new capabilities. The Dutch capability assessment method is under development (work in progress). The idea is to execute the assessment in a structural approach with a general list of capabilities as starting point to examine the relevance of the different capabilities for each risk category. That will result in an overview of the space to reinforce. Finally, the results of the capability assessment is input for the decision making process.

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