United Nations

A/51/605/Add.6


General Assembly

Distr. GENERAL  

6 December 1996

ORIGINAL:
SPANISH


General Assembly
Fifty-first session
Agenda item 97 (f)


            ENVIRONMENT AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT:  INTERNATIONAL
                     DECADE FOR NATURAL DISASTER REDUCTION

                 Report of the Second Committee (Part VII)*

(*  The report of the Committee on this item will be issued in several
parts, under the symbol A/51/605 and addenda.)


          Rapporteur:  Ms. Silvia Cristina CORADO-CUEVAS (Guatemala)


                               I.  INTRODUCTION

1.   The Second Committee held a substantive debate on agenda item 97
(see A/51/605, para. 2).  Action on sub-item (f) was taken at the 19th
and 37th meetings, on 29 October and 2 December 1996.  An account of
the Committee's consideration of the item is contained in the relevant
summary records (A/C.2/51/SR.19 and 37).


         II.  CONSIDERATION OF DRAFT RESOLUTIONS A/C.2/51/L.4 AND L.42

2.   At the 19th meeting, on 29 October, the representative of Costa
Rica (on behalf of the States Members that are members of the Group of
77 and China) and Colombia (on behalf of the States Members that are
members of the Movement of Non-Aligned Countries) introduced a draft
resolution (A/C.2/51/L.4) entitled "International Decade for Natural
Disaster Reduction", which read:

         "The General Assembly,

         "Recalling its resolutions 44/236 of 22 December 1989, 48/188
     of 21 December 1993, 49/22 A of 2 December 1994, 49/22 B of
     20 December 1994 and 50/117 A and 50/117 B, both of
     20 December 1995, and Economic and Social Council resolution
     1996/45 of 26 July 1996,

         "Expressing its solidarity with the people and countries that
     suffer as a result of natural disasters and expressing also the
     deepest sympathy to all victims of the natural disasters that have
     struck in various parts of the globe,

         "Emphasizing once again the urgent need for concrete measures
     to reduce the vulnerability of societies to natural hazards, the
     loss of human lives and the heavy physical and economic damage
     that occur as a result of natural disasters, in particular in
     developing countries, small island States and landlocked
     countries,

         "Commending those countries, national and local institutions,
     organizations and associations that have adopted policies,
     allocated resources and initiated action programmes, including
     international assistance, for disaster reduction and, in this
     context, welcoming the participation of private companies and
     individuals,

         "1.   Takes note of the report of the Secretary-General on the
     International Decade for Natural Disaster Reduction;

         "2.   Reaffirms that disaster reduction is an integral part of
     and contributes to the achievement of sustainable development,
     through the protection, at the national and community levels, of
     such resources as human lives, human capacities, financial assets,
     natural assets, natural resources and the environment, means of
     production and infrastructure;

         "3.   Calls upon Member States, relevant intergovernmental
     bodies and all others involved in the International Decade for
     Natural Disaster Reduction to extend financial and technical
     support for Decade activities, in order to ensure the
     implementation of the International Framework of Action for the
     Decade, in particular with a view to translating the Yokohama
     Strategy for a Safer World:  Guidelines for Natural Disaster
     Prevention, Preparedness and Mitigation and the Plan of Action
     contained therein into concrete disaster reduction programmes and
     activities;

         "4.   Commends all countries that have mobilized domestic
     resources for disaster reduction activities and facilitated the
     effective implementation of such activities, and encourages all
     countries concerned to continue in this direction;

         "5.   Reaffirms the need to support the implementation of the
     Yokohama Strategy and its Plan of Action with particular regard to
     improving education and training in disaster reduction, including
     the creation of interdisciplinary and technical networking at all
     levels, for the purpose of capacity-building and human resources
     development in developing countries, in particular those that are
     prone to natural disasters, as well as least developed, small
     island and landlocked countries;

         "6.   Stresses the need for synergy between the implementation
     of the Programme of Action for the Sustainable Development of
     Small Island Developing States and that of the Yokohama Strategy
     and its Plan of Action as they relate to natural disaster
     reduction;

         "7.   Underlines the need for the United Nations system to
     ensure the integration of the Yokohama Strategy and its Plan of
     Action into the coordinated approach taken to the follow-up to all
     recent major United Nations conferences and summit meetings and to
     the implementation of their respective plans of action;

         "8.   Invites the Secretary-General, in particular, to
     facilitate, within the existing International Framework of Action
     for the Decade, an internationally concerted framework for
     improvements in early warning capacities by developing a concrete
     proposal for an effective international mechanism on early
     warning, to include the transfer of technologies related to early
     warning to developing countries, under the auspices of the United
     Nations and as part of the implementation of the International
     Framework of Action for the Decade and the Yokohama Strategy and
     its Plan of Action;

         "9.   Calls on the Secretary-General to ensure adequate
     consideration and involvement of the International Framework of
     Action for the Decade in the evaluation and overall review and
     appraisal of the implementation of Agenda 21 in 1997;

         "10. Reaffirms that the secretariat of the Decade will
     continue to serve as the substantive secretariat for the
     preparation of the closing event of the Decade, working with the
     full support of relevant bodies of the United Nations Secretariat
     and drawing on the contributions of the organizations of the
     United Nations system concerned, other international organizations
     and Governments;

         "11. Requests the Secretary-General to ensure the availability
     of resources for the activities related to the preparation of the
     closing event of the Decade and to appeal for additional voluntary
     contributions to the Trust Fund for the Decade;

         "12. Also requests the Secretary-General to review
     relationships and responsibilities for natural disaster reduction
     with respect to the future, and to submit to the General Assembly
     at its fifty-second session, through the Economic and Social
     Council, a report on the implementation of the International
     Framework of Action for the Decade, including concrete proposals
     for ensuring the distinct performance capability of the
     secretariat of the Decade, in order to bring the Decade to its
     successful conclusion by the year 1999;

         "13. Requests the secretariat of the Decade to convene, in its
     capacity as substantive secretariat of the closing event of the
     Decade, the first meeting of the preparatory committee for the
     closing event, not later than the special session of the General
     Assembly to review Agenda 21, and with due recognition of
     equitable regional representation."

3.   On 22 November, a statement on the programme budget implications
of draft resolution A/C.2/51/L.4 was circulated by the Secretary-
General in accordance with rule 153 of the rules of procedure of the
General Assembly (A/C.2/51/L.36).

4.   At the 37th meeting, on 2 December, the Vice-Chairman of the
Committee, Mr. Mohammad Reza Hadji Karim Djabbary (Islamic Republic of
Iran), introduced a draft resolution (A/C.2/51/L.42), submitted on the
basis of informal consultations held on draft resolution A/C.2/51/L.4.

5.   The Secretary of the Committee informed the Committee that the
programme budget implications contained in document A/C.2/51/L.36 did
not apply to draft resolution A/C.2/51/L.42 (see A/C.2/51/SR.37).

6.   At the same meeting, the Committee adopted draft resolution
A/C.2/51/L.42 (see para. 8).

7.   In the light of the adoption of draft resolution A/C.2/51/L.42,
draft resolution A/C.2/51/L.4 was withdrawn by its sponsors.


                 III.  RECOMMENDATION OF THE SECOND COMMITTEE

8.   The Second Committee recommends to the General Assembly the
adoption of the following draft resolution:

              International Decade for Natural Disaster Reduction

     The General Assembly,

     Recalling its resolutions 44/236 of 22 December 1989, 48/188 of
21 December 1993, 49/22 A of 2 December 1994, 49/22 B of 20 December
1994, and 50/117 A and 50/117 B, both of 20 December 1995, and
Economic and Social Council resolution 1996/45 of 26 July 1996,

     Expressing its solidarity with the people and countries that
suffer as a result of natural disasters and expressing also the
deepest sympathy to all victims of the natural disasters that have
struck in various parts of the globe,

     Emphasizing once again the urgent need for concrete measures to
reduce the vulnerability of societies to natural hazards, the loss of
human lives and the heavy physical and economic damage that occur as a
result of natural disasters, in particular in developing countries,
small island developing States and landlocked countries,

     Commending those countries, national and local institutions,
organizations and associations that have adopted policies, allocated
resources and initiated action programmes, including international
assistance, for disaster reduction and, in this context, welcoming the
participation of private companies and individuals,

     1.  Takes note of the report of the Secretary-General on the
International Decade for Natural Disaster Reduction; 1/

     2.  Reaffirms that disaster reduction forms an integral part of
sustainable development strategies and national development plans of
vulnerable countries and communities;

     3.  Calls upon all States, relevant intergovernmental bodies and
all others involved in the International Decade for Natural Disaster
Reduction to participate actively in the financial and technical
support for Decade activities, in order to ensure the implementation
of the International Framework of Action for the Decade, 2/in
particular with a view to translating the Yokohama Strategy for a
Safer World:  Guidelines for Natural Disaster Prevention, Preparedness
and Mitigation and the Plan of Action contained therein 3/into
concrete disaster reduction programmes and activities;

     4.  Commends all countries, in particular those developing and
least developed countries that have mobilized domestic resources for
disaster reduction activities and have facilitated the effective
implementation of such activities, and encourages all developing
countries concerned to continue in this direction;

     5.  Reaffirms the need to support the implementation of the
Yokohama Strategy and its Plan of Action, with particular regard to
improving education and training in disaster reduction, including the
creation of interdisciplinary and technical networking at all levels,
for the purpose of capacity-building and human resources development
in developing countries, in particular those that are prone to natural
disasters, as well as least developed, small island developing and
landlocked countries;

     6.  Welcomes the initiatives aimed at defining regional
frameworks for disaster mitigation, such as the regional seminars held
in Africa and the Mediterranean;

     7.  Stresses the need for synergy between the implementation of
the Programme of Action for the Sustainable Development of Small
Island Developing States 4/and that of the Yokohama Strategy and its
Plan of Action as they relate to natural disaster reduction;

     8.  Underlines the need for the United Nations system to ensure
the integration of the Yokohama Strategy and its Plan of Action into
the coordinated approach taken to the follow-up to all recent major
United Nations conferences and summit meetings and to the
implementation of their respective plans of action;

     9.  Invites the Secretary-General, in particular to facilitate,
within the existing International Framework of Action for the Decade,
an internationally concerted framework for improvements in early
warning by developing a concrete proposal for an effective
international mechanism on early warning, to include the transfer of
technologies related to early warning to developing countries, under
the auspices of the United Nations and as part of the implementation
of the International Framework of Action for the Decade and the
Yokohama Strategy and its Plan of Action;

     10. Calls upon the secretariat of the Decade to continue to
facilitate a concerted international approach to improvements in early
warning capacities for natural disasters and similar disasters with
adverse impact on the environment within the process leading towards
the closing event of the Decade;

     11. Recommends that adequate consideration be given to the
International Framework of Action for the Decade as part of the
evaluation and overall review and appraisal of the implementation of
Agenda 21 5/in 1997;

     12. Reaffirms that the secretariat of the Decade will continue to
serve as the substantive secretariat for the preparation of the
closing event of the Decade, working with the full support of relevant
bodies of the United Nations Secretariat and drawing on the
contributions of the organizations of the United Nations system
concerned, other international organizations and Governments;

     13. Requests the Secretary-General to continue to appeal for
additional voluntary contributions to the Trust Fund for the Decade;

     14. Also requests the Secretary-General to bring forward, as a
first step in the process leading towards the closing event of the
Decade, and in order to begin the preparatory process in 1998,
proposals arising from consultation with interested parties, and to
set forth in his substantive report to the General Assembly at its
fifty-second session, proposals regarding the format, substance and
timing of the event, also taking into account, inter alia, the need to
review relationships and responsibilities relevant to natural disaster
reduction with respect to the future and the performance capability of
the secretariat of the Decade.


                                     -----


                                     Notes

1/   A/51/186-E/1996/80.

2/   See resolution 44/236, annex.

3/   A/CONF.172/9, chap. I, resolution 1, annex I.

4/   Report of the Global Conference on the Sustainable Development of
Small Island Developing States, Bridgetown, Barbados, 25 April-6 May
1994 (United Nations publication, Sales No. E.94.I.18 and corrigenda),
chap. I, resolution 1, annex II.

5/   Report of the United Nations Conference on Environment and
Development, Rio de Janeiro, 3-14 June 1992 (A/CONF.151/26/Rev.1 (vol.
I and vol. I/Corr.1, vol. II, vol. III and vol. III/Corr.1)) (United
Nations publication, Sales No. E.93.I.8 and corrigenda), vol. I: 
Resolutions Adopted by the Conference resolution 1, annex II.

 

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