This project aims to support the development of a new multi-hazard Early Warning System (EWS) facility, addressing the significant exposure of countries in Asia and the Pacific region to disaster risks. The enhancement of EWS aligns with global commitments, such as the Paris Agreement, Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), Sustainable Development Goal 13, Sendai Framework Target G, and the Early Warnings for All Initiative (EW4All). In response to the growing demand and the global call for comprehensive EWS coverage, the ADB is exploring options to support its Developing Member Countries (DMCs) on EWS, defining the elements of a new facility, and identifying potential investments for support.
Countries in Asia and the Pacific region are significantly exposed to disaster risks from various hazards and are on the frontline of a climate emergency. Studies suggest that 80% of the globally affected people belong to the Asia-Pacific region, thus emphasizing the critical need for an effective multi-hazard EWS.
EWS, a cost-effective tool for saving lives and reducing economic losses, is particularly crucial for frequent and hazardous weather, water, and climate events. However, despite advancements in the four EWS components, major gaps persist, with implementation lagging and limited coverage in frontline countries, including least developed countries (LDCs) and small island developing states (SIDS). As of 2021, only 50% of countries in Asia and the Pacific reported having multi-hazard early warning systems (MHEWS), emphasizing the need for support.
The culmination of these efforts will be encapsulated in a scoping report, documenting the results of the project, including consultations with key partners and stakeholders during the Regional Workshop on Increasing Investments in Early Warning Systems, to be held in February 2024 in Bangkok, Thailand. The study will offer a comprehensive summary of the EWS scoping, encompassing the policy and institutional landscape, status, initiatives, and investments, as well as residual gaps for regional and national EWS programming in selected DMCs. Additionally, this study will provide guidelines for the implementation and operationalization of the proposed EWS facility, along with initial investment concept notes based on EWS priorities at regional and/or national levels. This holistic approach aims to contribute substantively to the strengthening of EWS capacities, fostering resilience in the face of increasing disaster risks across the region.