Press Release

Announcement of the Joint Message on the Synergy between Climate Action and Disaster Risk Reduction

June 30, 2020

[Japanese version simultaneously released by the Cabinet Office and the MOE]

Unprecedented climate-related disasters are occurring frequently across the country and beyond. We live in a time when climate change can be called a "climate crisis." Drastic disaster risk reduction (DRR) measures based on climate change risks are necessary to deal with disasters in this time of climate crisis. Therefore, we are announcing the recently formulated strategy for effectively promoting coordinated measures for climate change and DRR (i.e. Strategy for Enhancing the Synergy between Climate Action and Disaster Risk Reduction in the Era of Climate Crisis, a joint message from Mr. KOIZUMI Shinjiro, Minister of the Environment, and Mr. TAKEDA Ryota, Minister of State for Disaster Management).

1. Overview

In recent years, frequent climate-related disasters, such as the Heavy Rain Event of July 2018 and Typhoon Hagibis in October 2019, have caused severe floods, landslides, and mudflows. It is predicted that the frequency of heavy rain and floods will continue to increase due to climate change, and we need to recognize that we have entered an era in which unprecedented climate-related disasters will occur frequently all over Japan.

Therefore, the Disaster Management Bureau of the Cabinet Office and the Ministry of the Environment have convened three successive dialogues on policies with experts from the perspective of the synergy between climate action and DRR since February 2020 in order to further raise awareness among all the people about climate action and DRR and convey our direction of climate change measures to them. Based on the discussion in these dialogues, we have published the Strategy for Enhancing the Synergy between Climate Action and Disaster Risk Reduction in the Era of Climate Crisis: Shifting from Restoring the Status Quo to "Adaptive Recovery" for effectively promoting coordinated measures for climate change and DRR. The approaches described in this strategy comprise: considering projection and assessment of climate change and its impacts; comprehensively grasping various social issues; and aiming to achieve the SDGs.

2. Key Points

(1) Mainstreaming the synergy between climate action and disaster risk reduction

  • Climate action and DRR are cross-cutting challenges and need to be addressed on all fronts.
  • In each policy area, we will strive to incorporate and mainstream climate action and DRR in the policymaking process.

(2) Promoting comprehensive measures for a decarbonized and highly disaster-resilient society

  • All stakeholders must act on climate change and DRR on all fronts in an integrated manner using various approaches.
  • We aim to build a society that can minimize any damage caused by disasters, while being resilient, safe, secure, and sustainable with the ability to become even more resilient and attractive after recovering from disasters; that is, a society that "deals skillfully (inasu) with disasters and recovers immediately."
  • When recovering from a disaster, we must not be confined to simply restoring the affected area to the way it was before the disaster struck; rather, we must respond to disasters conveying the idea of "Adaptive Recovery" by implementing resilient measures including the control of land use where communities can ensure adaptation to climate change.

(3) Transforming awareness, facilitating behavior change and preparedness for emergencies, and promoting collaboration among citizens, businesses, and communities

  • We must take actions for transforming awareness of the population towards DRR so that everyone has a sense of self-help (ji-jo) and mutual-assistance (kyo-jo) and knows the disaster risks at home, in the workplace, and in their local community, so as to gain a proper understanding of what appropriate disaster prevention actions to take, such as evacuation, when a disaster occurs.
  • Sharing DRR knowledge and actions in communities and workplaces is needed to enhance their resilience against disasters, always keeping in mind that climate-related disasters could occur in an unprecedented scale and character.
  • To increase effectiveness of DRR efforts and disaster responses, awareness of mutual-assistance among all stakeholders must be fostered along with appropriate actions.

(4) Promoting international cooperation

  • Bringing together the three pillars of the Paris Agreement, the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, and the SDGs through the synergy between climate action and DRR, we aim to achieve these agendas simultaneously.

3. Future Direction

Hereafter, the Disaster Management Bureau of the Cabinet Office and the Ministry of the Environment will cooperate with each other in promoting efforts based on this message (strategy), including making a budget request for FY2021.

General Policy Division, Minister's Secretariat

Ministry of the Environment, Japan

Main: +81-3-3581-3351

Direct: +81-3-5521-8224

Director NAGASHIMA Tetsuya (Extension 6210)

Deputy Director OHKAWA Masato (Extension 6249)

Climate Change Adaptation Office, Global Environment Bureau

Ministry of the Environment, Japan

Main: +81-3-3581-3351

Direct: +81-3-5521-8242

Director TAKAHASHI Kazuaki (Extension 6780)

Deputy Director HOSHINO Yuko (Extension 7719)

Specialist ORITA Tomonori (Extension 7727)

For Japanese

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