Public-Private Partnership for Disaster Reduction in Central America
Located in the centre of the American continent, Central America is considered one of the richest regions in terms of biodiversity and resources, but also one of the most vulnerable in terms of damage occurring as result of disasters. This is due to factors such as seismic frequency and volcanic eruptions, prolonged cyclonic seasonality from the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean, and the marked variability that climate change is generating in frequency and intensity, mainly because of hydro-meteorological phenomena.
The Climate Risk Index of Germanwatch (2017), based on analyses of information between 1994 and 2014 on the impact of extreme weather events and associated socio-economic data, indicates that from the Central American region, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua are three of the 10 countries with the highest global climate risk worldwide. These events are generating significant losses beyond what has been traditionally recorded in terms of affected population or damaged infrastructure. In the last five years, the financial costs attributed to disasters within the region reached more than US$300 billion in economic losses.
Within this context, those companies which depend on the stability of their value chains are being affected by increased losses and operational interruptions associated with disasters, such as damage in infrastructure, machinery, raw material losses, problems with drainage, communication, and loss of data and vital information. Additional delays from road and port closures due to the lack of adequate mitigation measures can even result in some companies closing.