UNESCAP publishes report on protecting the most vulnerable from climate extremes and COVID-19 in South Asia

Report cover page. Image: UNESCAP.

The United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) has published a policy study concerning the impending climate risk scenarios in South Asia and their intersection with the COVID-19 pandemic. The aim of this report is to facilitate policy actions that could protect communities at risk as well as to lay the foundations of resilient recovery of the most vulnerable in South Asia. 


Publishing Date: 

Thu, 23/07/2020 - 11:50

Tropical Cyclone Idai monitored from space

Floods imaged by Copernicus Sentinel-1.

Millions of people in Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe are struggling to cope with the aftermath of Cyclone Idai, which has swept through this part of southeast Africa over the last weeks, leaving devastation in its wake. It is thought that more than two million people in the three countries have been affected, but the extent of destruction is still unfolding.


Publishing Date: 

Thu, 04/04/2019 - 15:25

International Charter activated for floods in Yemen

Logo of the International Charter "Space and Major Disasters"

The International Charter Space and Major Disasters has been activated for flooding in Yemen on 2 June.


Publishing Date: 

Mon, 04/06/2018 - 12:02

Using GPM software to track cyclone rainfall

The GPM core satellite found extremely heavy rainfall on 6 March on the east side of cyclone Hola. Image: NASA/JAXA, Hal Pierce

NASA’s Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission core observatory satellite has been an integral asset in disaster risk management last month. This satellite is able to produce information on precipitation particles within cloud layers by using an active radar; information that is beneficial in monitoring, predicting, and tracking the progression of cyclones and other extreme weather phenomena.

Publishing Date: 

Mon, 16/04/2018 - 11:12

International Charter activated for New Caledonia cyclone

The International Charter Space and Major Disasters has been activated for cyclone in New Caledonia on 8 March.

Local authorities have pre-warned the public about a tropical cyclone that is expected to affect Loyalty Islands, Ouvéa, Lifou and Tiga and lastly Maré on 9 March. In the north of Vanuatu archipelago, rainfall exceed 300mm following with strong winds. The New Caledonia government has issued maximum alert for citizens of Loyalty Islands as the Cyclone Hola is currently a category 4 storm and could reach category 5 strength.

Publishing Date: 

Wed, 14/03/2018 - 17:04

Satellite technology improves tracking of hurricane wind speed

Image of Hurricane Joaquin over the Atlantic Ocean north of Bermuda taken by GOES East on October 5, 2015.

A new satellite remote sensing technique has been proven effective in measuring ocean wind speed in order to better track hurricanes and cyclones. This technique uses GPS technology to send signals to Earth’s surface and gather data via Global Navigation Satellite Systems-Reflectometry (GNSS-R) and is expected to lead to better forecasts in the future.

Publishing Date: 

Thu, 08/03/2018 - 11:11

International Charter activated for Cyclone Gita in Tonga

The International Charter Space and Major Disasters has been activated for Cyclone Gita in Tonga.

Cyclone Gita, a Category 4 storm, hit Tonga on the evening of February 12th. Acting prime minister Hon. Semisi Sika declared a state of emergency for the whole region, while 108 evacuation centres housing nearly 4,000 people were set up on Tonga’s main island of Tongatapu. A further 12 centres were set up among the nations Ha’apai group of islands.


Publishing Date: 

Mon, 19/02/2018 - 12:03

Cyclone Dineo hits Mozambique and South Africa

Image courtesy of NASA.

Tropical cyclone Dineo hit the Inhambane Province in Mozambique on 15 February 2017. According to Al Jazeera, the winds were register at 130km/h, generating waves 6 meters high and causing heavy rains. Mozambican media reported that the cyclone has left 4 people dead. There is a high risk of flooding, as the area has already received above average rainfall during the last few months, which has affected tens of thousands of people.


Publishing Date: 

Wed, 22/02/2017 - 05:59

International Charter on Space and Major Disasters activated for Bangladesh – Roanu Cyclone

Cyclone Roanu in Bangladesh - Image courtesy of NASA Earth Observatory, map by Joshua Stevens

Cyclone Roanu reached Bangladesh on 21 May 2016, leaving 26 people and affecting hundreds of thousands others. The storm caused heavy rains which led to floods and landslides across the coast of the country, affecting fifteen districts.


Publishing Date: 

Tue, 31/05/2016 - 14:22

Sri Lanka Landslides and Torrential Rains due to Tropical Storm Roanu

Image courtesy of NASA/JAXA/SSAI, Hal Pierce

On 18 May 2016, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and its associated agencies captured Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) images of tropical cyclone Roanu in the Bay of Bengal. The hazard had negative effects on Sri Lankan and Southern Indian regions.  Although the storm was a relatively weak, it provoked landslides and heavy flooding, increasing the death toll to 75 people in Sri Lanka as thousands of homes remain inundated. Nearly 22 of Sri Lanka’s 25 districts have been affected by the rains according to disaster officials.


Publishing Date: 

Wed, 25/05/2016 - 09:26


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