12 December 2013, GENEVA – The United Nations General Assembly has set the stage for a new global agreement on reducing the impact of disasters by confirming that the 3rd World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction will take place in Sendai City, Japan from 14 to 18 March 2015.
The main item on the Conference agenda is agreement on a successor to the Hyogo Framework for Action which was adopted at the last such Conference in 2005 within weeks of the Indian Ocean tsunami and which was attended by representatives from 168 UN Member States. Over 8,000 people are expected to attend the 2015 event including heads of State, government ministers, parliamentarians, academics, NGO and other civil society representatives.
UNISDR Chief Margareta Wahlström said: “The 3rd World Conference provides us with a rare opportunity to forge universal agreement on how to build disaster resilience across all sectors of society. It is particularly important that we have a strong urban focus as we expect 75% of the world’s population to be living in towns and cities by 2050.”
Sendai City is the capital city of Miyagi Prefecture in the Tōhoku region with a population of one million people. In March 2011, it was one of the cities affected by the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami, which killed over 15,000 people and is one of the costliest disasters in history.
Ms. Emiko Okuyama, the Mayor of Sendai City, today unveiled the Conference logo. She said: “This logo was designed by a local designer and represents people joining hands to create a chain of action. The five colours stand for the five priorities of Hyogo Framework for Action (2005-2015): Building the Resilience of Nations and Communities to Disasters which brought the concept of resilience into the mainstream of development thinking. We look forward to hosting the Conference and to welcoming the world to the Tohoku region which has made a strong recovery from the Great East Japan Earthquake.”