Strategy for Disaster Reduction
Latin America and the Caribbean
Newsletter ISDR Inform - Latin America and the Caribbean
Fire Monitoring Center (GFMC) Receives
The annual ceremony of the 2001 United Nations Sasakawa Award for Disaster Reduction took place on Wednesday 10 October 2001 at the United Nations in Geneva as part of the International Day for Disaster Reduction celebrations. The ceremony was chaired by Mr. Vladimir Petrovsky, Director General of the United Nations in Geneva and Guest of Honour. Present was also Mr. Tatsuya Tanami, Director for International Relations and Special Projects at the Nippon Foundation, the Japanese sponsor of the United Nations Sasakawa Award for Disaster Reduction.
Mr. Petrovsky handed over the Sasakawa Award and the cheque of 50,000 USD to the 2001laureate, the Global Fire Monitoring Centre (GFMC), which was represented by its Director, Mr. Johann Goldammer and members of his team. Children of the International School in Geneva, who are presently learning about natural disasters worldwide presented Mr Goldammer with a special drawing which they had prepared for the occasion on the theme of wildfires.
Together with Mr. Tanami and Mr. Briceño, the Director of the ISDR Secretariat, Mr. Petrovsky proceeded to present three Certificates of Distinction to Ms. Corazón de León, former Chair of the Civil Service Commission of the Government of the Philippines, on behalf of the Philippines Institute of Volcanology (PHIVOLCS), to Mr. Terry Jeggle, on behalf of Mr. Brian Ward, one of the founding Directors of the Asian Disaster Preparedness Centre (ADPC) in Bangkok, Thailand, and to Mr. Joseph Busiega, First Secretary at the Permanent Mission of Kenya to the United Nations in Geneva, on behalf of Professor Isaac Nyambok, Professor at the University of Nairobi.
Four Certificates of Merit were also presented; to Mr. Amod Dixit, Director of the National Society for Earthquake Technology of Nepal, to Her Excellency, Ms. Olmeda Rivera Ramirez, Ambassador of Honduras to the United Nations in Geneva, on behalf of the « Comisión Permanente de Contingencias (COPECO) » from Honduras, to Mr. Klaus Tietze, on behalf of the Nyos Monoum (in Cameroun) Degassing Project Advisory Committee, and to Mr. Felipe Ernst, First Secretary at the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Chile to the United Nations in Geneva, on behalf of the « Oficina Nacional de Emergencia (ONEMI) » in Chile.
The 2001 laureate and the recipients of Certificates were congratulated for their innovative work in the field of disaster reduction, and encouraged to pursue their efforts.
The Director General of the United Nations in Geneva, Mr. Petrovsky, reaffirmed the United Nations full support to the issue of disaster reduction as a priority concern on the international agenda, and welcomed the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction as the unique international platform and mechanism, as part of the international institutions located in Geneva, to promote disaster reduction activities worldwide.
The ceremony was concluded by a presentation of GFMCs activities in the field of wildfire reduction at the international level, in cooperation with several UN agencies and other international stakeholders. The ceremony was followed by substantive roundtable discussions on the ways to improve disaster reduction in the twenty-first century. A constructive discussion took place between the panellists (2001Sasakawa Laureate and the recipients of the Certificates) and the floor, composed of representatives from universities and the scientific community, who agreed on the need for sound awareness raising for successful disaster reduction initiatives.
For more information on the United Nations Sasakawa Award for Disaster Reduction and the 2002 nomination process, please visit the ISDR website www.unisdr.org or contact Christel Rose, tel. +41 (22) 917 9717, fax +41 (22) 917 9098/9, firstname.lastname@example.org