You take a bank loan and spend your life savings to buy an apartment or a lot to build the house of your dreams – the place where you’ll settle down, raise a family, grow old. Of course, it’s important that you feel good and safe in that place. And yet, the nature in the Balkans is prone to floods, landslides and earthquakes, and disasters are only getting worse as time goes by, due to climate change. Now, however, you will be able to select the safest location for you and your family – and all it takes is a few clicks.
Disaster Risk Register is an innovative tool built on the principles of integrated risk management: identification, mapping, and geo-locating. It links the risks with specific micro locations on the interactive map of the Republic Geodetic Authority. Once the system is fully operational, in mid-2022, all citizens of Serbia and numerous investors will be able to simply click on a location on the map of Serbia and learn all available information about risks that may threaten the infrastructure, public buildings, cultural goods, human health and lives there.
In this way, all interested parties may make informed choices about living or investing in buildings on each location, as well as timely invest in prevention, which will mitigate the consequences to human lives and property, preserve the economy, and allow the continuity of business activities during natural disasters.
This innovative tool was showcased during the first week of the World Expo in Dubai, focused on biodiversity and the environment, which highlights the importance of timely and comprehensive risk identification for the health and safety of people and security of personal and capital investments.
Sandra Nedeljković, acting Deputy Director of the Public Investment Managements Office, presented the potential of Disaster Risk Register to the numerous visitors of the pavilion the Republic of Serbia during the Dubai Expo event.
The World Expo was opened in Dubai on October 1st 2021. For the past 170 years, this event serves as a platform for introducing innovations that have largely shaped the world as we know it today. At the Dubai Expo, there are representatives of 192 countries from all around the world, including Serbia, whose slogan is “Serbia creates ideas: Inspired by the past, we create the future.”
“Disaster Risk Register will enable the state authorities to exchange data in real time, improve the quality of preventive activities, and facilitate the emergency response. Having this knowledge and data on risk zones will raise the quality of urban planning and reduce the impact of natural and other disasters on the environment. Disaster Risk Register is also an important step in harmonizing the Serbian legislation with the EU acquis communautaire in the area of environmental protection, as well as in establishing of the geospatial data infrastructure system,” said Sandra Nedeljković during her presentation.
Disaster Risk Registry is an example of cross-institutional cooperation between the competent authorities of the Republic of Serbia: the Ministry of Interior, the Sector for Emergency Management, the Public Investment Management Office, and the Republic Geodetic Authority. The EU has funded the first phase of development of this IT system with 500,000 EUR, and the project is implemented by UNDP.
The project “EU for Serbia Resilient to Disasters” contributed to creating a safer, more resilient and sustainable future in Serbia. Building on the experiences such as the unprecedented floods in 2014, dramatic forest fires we’re facing every year, and growing consequences of natural disasters caused by climate change, the project resulted in establishing of a unique IT system for integrated risk management – Disaster Risk Register.
From 2014 onward, the EU support to civil protection in Serbia has amounted to over 250 million EUR. During the major floods in 2014, EU provided Serbia with more than 140 million EUR of assistance, while since the beginning of the refugee crisis in 2015, it has given more than 80 million EUR. When the COVID-19 outbreak started in Europe, the EU established and launched solidarity mechanisms that included Serbia. Urgent assistance to Serbia for COVID-19 recovery was approved and launched, in the amount of over 93 million EUR.
Along with member states, Serbia is one of the countries that are part of the EU Civil Protection Mechanism.
In the EU, the main mission of the EU civil protection and humanitarian operations is to save lives, prevent and mitigate human suffering, and protect the population affected by disasters and crises.
The EU support is implemented in collaboration with the Government of Serbia. The EU donates more funds for the development of Serbia than all other international donors combined. The EU donations are used for the development of Serbia.