Technical ReportPDF Available

Hazard Definition and Classification Review

Authors:
UN Office for Disaster Risk Reductio
n
HAZARD
DEFINITION &
CLASSIFICATION
REVIEW
TECHNICAL REPORT
© 2020 UNITED NATIONS
For additional information, please contact:
United Nations Oce for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR)
9-11 Rue de Varembé, 1202 Geneva, Switzerland, Tel: +41 22 917 89 08
Note: The designations employed and the presentation of maps in this report do not imply
the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Secretariat of the United Nations
concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities or concerning
the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries.
Data disaggregated by region reects the coverage of UNDRR’s Regional Oces.
This report was supported by BMZ and USAID.
UNDRR and ISC would like to thank all those who contributed to this report for their time and expertise.
Cover Photograph: © iStock.com/Royyimzy
Design & Layout: Victoria Keingati
HAZARD
DEFINITION &
CLASSIFICATION
REVIEW
TECHNICAL REPORT
UN Office for Disaster Risk Reductio
n
GLOSSARY
CBRNE Chemical, Biological, Radiation, Nuclear, Explosive
EM-DAT Emergency Management Disasters Database
FAO UN Food and Agriculture Organization
HIP Hazard Information Prole
ICT Information Communication and Technology
IFRC International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies
IRDR Integrated Research on Disaster Risk
ISC International Science Council
OIEWG Open-ended Intergovernmental Expert Working Group
SDGs Sustainable Development Goals (Agenda 2030)
SFM Sendai Framework Monitor
STAG Science, Technology and Advisory Group
TWG Technical Working Group
UN United Nations
UNDRR United Nations Oce for Disaster Risk Reduction
UNGA UN General Assembly
UNISDR United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction
WHO World Health Organization
WMO World Meteorological Organization
Table of Contents
Foreword from the Chair .................................................................................................... 7
Executive Summary ............................................................................................................ 9
1 Introduction ............................................................................................................... 13
1.1 Background .........................................................................................................................................13
1.2 The project ..........................................................................................................................................14
1.3 Technical working group ..................................................................................................................15
2 NeedforaHazardDenitionandClassication.......................................................... 16
2.1 Current Status ....................................................................................................................................16
2.2 Standardisation in nomenclatures of hazard information ........................................................18
2.3 Importanceofdeninghazardsforrisk-informeddecision-makingandriskreduction .....19
2.4 Hazard event characterisation ........................................................................................................20
3 ConceptualFrameworkforIdentifyingHazards .......................................................... 22
3.1 Hazard and the other dimensions of risk .....................................................................................22
3.2 ApplyingtheUNGAdenitionofhazardinthisproject..............................................................22
3.3 Need to better account for the influence of human activity ....................................................25
4 ProposedHazardList................................................................................................. 26
4.1 Main data sources .............................................................................................................................26
4.2 Consensus building ...........................................................................................................................26
4.3 Overall hazard list ..............................................................................................................................27
4.4 Description of hazard clusters .......................................................................................................28
4.5 Scienticdescriptionofindividualhazards ..................................................................................31
4.6 Needforuser-drivenclassications ..............................................................................................31
5 PotentialApplications ............................................................................................... 33
5.1 Use at national and global level ......................................................................................................33
5.2 Cataloguing loss and damage .......................................................................................................34
5.3 Multi-hazardearlywarningsystems ............................................................................................34
5.4 Needtostrengthenthescience-policyinterface ........................................................................36
6 | UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW
6 ScienticDebatesandLimitations ............................................................................ 37
6.1 Scienticdebates .............................................................................................................................37
6.2 Limitations ..........................................................................................................................................37
7 Recommendations .................................................................................................... 39
References ......................................................................................................................... 42
Annexes ............................................................................................................................. 45
Technical Working Group members, contributors and reviewers ...........................................45
TWG members ..................................................................................................................................45
 Co-facilitators .....................................................................................................................................46
Project support team ........................................................................................................................46
Library services courtesy of knowledge & library services
of public health England and evidence aid ...................................................................................46
 AuthorsoftheHazardInformationProles(HIPs) .....................................................................46
Review of the HIPs ............................................................................................................................49
Review of the technical report ........................................................................................................51
Thanks to advisory group ...............................................................................................................51
 Pre-denedhazardsintheSendaiFrameworkMonitor ............................................................52
 DenitionsadoptedbytheUNGeneralAssembly(UNGA) .......................................................53
 Scienticglossaries .........................................................................................................................56
 UNfunds,programmes,specialisedagenciesandothersfromUNDRR(2017) ................65
Initial hazard list ................................................................................................................................72
Methodology and process ..............................................................................................................82
Main data sources .............................................................................................................................82
 2014IRDRperilclassication .........................................................................................................85
Hazard terminology review project: Guidelines for reviewers ..................................................86
UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW | 7
ForewordfromtheChair
Whilst observing the complex yet fascinating
negotiations for the Sendai Framework for Disaster
Risk Reduction 2015–2030 as a member and
then vice-chair of the United Nations International
Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UNISDR) Scientic
and Technological Advisory Group from 2011 to 2015
and where asked, supporting the UN Member States
negotiators on scientic issues of all kinds, it was
apparent that some paragraphs of the Framework
would require more explanation. Thus, the reference
to ‘all hazards’ identied in ‘Priority 1 Understanding
Disaster Risk’ resulted in the need to ask the question:
What does ‘all hazards’ mean?
To strengthen technical and scientic capacity to
capitalize on and consolidate existing knowledge and
to develop and apply methodologies and models to
assess disaster risks, vulnerabilities and exposure to
all hazards (Sendai Framework, §24j)
Following further meetings in later years it became
more apparent that ‘all hazards’ was not claried
even through the Integrated Research on Disaster
Risk (IRDR) Peril Classication and Hazard Glossary
published in 2014 and the excellent work of the Open-
ended Intergovernmental Expert Working Group
(OIEWG) on indicators and terminology relating to
disaster risk reduction. According to the OIEWG’s
report, published in 2016 and adopted by the UN
General Assembly in 2017, a hazard is dened as:
A process, phenomenon or human activity that may
cause loss of life, injury or other health impacts,
property damage, social and economic disruption or
environmental degradation.
Indeed, it was found that the UN Member States
were mostly reporting on the natural hazards for the
Sendai Framework Monitor in the meeting in 2018.
After much discussion with many, the United Nations
Oce for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR) and the
International Science Council (ISC) jointly established
a Technical Working Group (TWG) to identify the full
scope of all hazards relevant to the Sendai Framework
and the scientic denitions of these hazards. To me,
the honour to be invited to chair the TWG and this
project has been enormous.
In May 2019 at the Global Platform, the all hazard
project was formally started. To do this work, the
TWG, the project secretariat and I have engaged with
scientists in many organisations and UN agency
scientic partners to nd out how, via consensus
building, an all hazard list could best be developed.
In addition, at the Global Platform, all participants
who joined an informal session were invited to join an
advisory group, now consisting of 450 colleagues who
contributed to the ISC review of the hazards survey
undertaken in September–October 2019. I thank all
who have engaged in this complex but fascinating
task including all of our science colleagues in the
scientic unions and those who work in the UN
agencies. I also thank all those who have written the
Hazards Information Proles and those who have
been or are volunteering to peer review these. I thank
the UNDRR and ISC for the privilege of leading this
project and nally I thank my colleagues on the TWG
and particularly the secretariat based at Public Health
England – especially Lucy Fagan, Natalie Wright and
Lidia Mayner (Flinders University, Australia), as well
as many others without whom we could not have
accomplished this work.
Professor Virginia Murray, taken at the High-level Political Forum,
United Nations, New York July 2019
Virginia Murray
22 June 2020
8 | UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW
The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction
2015–2030 (‘the Sendai Framework’) was one of three
landmark agreements adopted by the United Nations in
2015. The other two being the Sustainable Development
Goals of Agenda 2030 and the Paris Agreement on Climate
Change. The UNDRR/ISC Sendai Hazard Denition and
ClassicationReviewTechnicalReportsupportsallthree
by providing a common set of hazard denitions for
monitoring and reviewing implementation which calls for
“a data revolution, rigorous accountability mechanisms
and renewed global partnerships”.
UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW | 9
The COVID-19 pandemic is a timely reminder of how
hazards within the complex and changing global risk
landscape can affect lives, livelihoods and health.
It provides a compelling case for an all- hazards
approach to achieve risk reduction as a basis for
sustainable development. The broad range of hazards
of relevance to risk reduction and resilience building,
and the increasingly interconnected, cascading
and complex nature of natural and human-induced
hazards, including their potential impact on health,
social, economic, nancial, political and other systems,
are all interlinked in the discussions on sustainable
development and climate change adaptation.
Hazard information when combined with exposure,
vulnerability and capacity is fundamental to all
aspects of disaster risk management, from multi-
hazard risk assessments for prevention and mitigation
to warnings and alerts, to disaster response and
recovery, long-term planning and public awareness.
Although understanding of hazards and their related
impacts has evolved over recent decades, and lists
of hazards are available at many levels from many
organisations, a single overview that provides a
full picture of hazards to help inform the policy,
practice and reporting of disaster risk reduction and
management within and across all sectors is not
currently available. The need for a more systematic
approach and standardised characterisation of
hazards has been highlighted by both the policy and
scientic communities.
This lack of a coherent view of hazards hampers
disaster risk reduction in several ways: it compromises
effective reporting by countries on aspects such as
mortality, morbidity, economic loss, damage to basic
infrastructure and disruption of basic services; it
is a barrier to implementing a comprehensive and
inclusive approach to the development of national
and local disaster risk reduction strategies and
related nancing and regulatory frameworks; and it
affects the capacity to develop and use multi-hazard
early warning systems effectively and forecast events
in the future.
In May 2019, the UN Oce for Disaster Risk
Reduction (UNDRR) and the International Science
Council (ISC) jointly established a technical working
group to identify the full scope of hazards relevant
to the Sendai Framework as a basis for countries to
review and strengthen their risk reduction policies
and operational risk management practices. This
report presents the rst results of this international
collaborative effort.
As a scientic undertaking, the technical working
group was guided by the denition of ‘hazard’ adopted
by the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in
February 2017; namely, “a process, phenomenon or
human activity that may cause loss of life, injury or
other health impacts, property damage, social and
economic disruption or environmental degradation”.
This denition covers a broader scope of hazards
than has traditionally been the case in the eld of
disaster risk reduction, and expands the denition of
hazard to include processes and activities.
The initial hazard list was compiled from existing
hazard glossaries and terminologies. To limit the
potentially innite scope of hazards addressed, a
hazard was only included if it fullled each of three
criteria: has the potential to impact a community;
has measurable spatial and temporal components;
proactive and reactive measures are available.
The hazard list currently excludes complex human
activities and processes where it was dicult to
identify a single or limited set of hazards, compound
and cascading hazards, and underlying disaster risk
drivers (such as climate change).
The technical working group used an iterative
process of developing and reviewing the hazards
Executive Summary
TheCOVID-19pandemicisatimely
reminder of how hazards within the
complex and changing global risk
landscape can affect lives, livelihoods
and health
10 | UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW
listed through extensive consultation with over 500
technical experts from relevant science groups,
UN organisations, the private sector and other
partners. The hazard list comprises 302 hazards
grouped according to eight clusters: meteorological
and hydrological hazards, extraterrestrial hazards,
geohazards, environmental hazards, chemical
hazards, biological hazards, technological hazards,
and societal hazards. Although this hazard list is
considered to be the most useful at the present time,
it is not a denitive list and needs regular review and
updating.
Hazard denitions are sourced from the highest
possible authority (such as the UN agency responsible
for providing guidance on the hazard), reect scientic
consensus on the issues addressed, and are of broad
international relevance. To help compile consistent
denitions and descriptions for the hazards listed,
the technical working group developed a common
template to be applied to all hazards. A hazard
information prole (‘HIP’) for each hazard has been
completed for most of the hazards. The nalization of
all HIPs will continue in the coming months.
This technical report, does not prescribe the list of
hazards to be used for risk management in a given
area or stakeholder group but rather provides a
baseline of knowledge on hazards that can be used
to engage government entities and stakeholders
representing different risk management interests.
Further development or prioritisation of hazards
should be made in the context of the risk management
objectives of each stakeholder, and the hazard list
developed as part of this project can serve as a tool
to help countries and communities investigate the
potential sources of risk in their own context.
Ultimately, this report takes stock of how our
understanding of hazards is shifting as we move
from managing disasters as events to managing
risks, as called for in the Sendai Framework by
addressing the systemic drivers of risk in relation
to climate change, health, sustainable development
and resilience building. As hazards are expected
to intensify with the effects of complex challenges,
such as climate change and in the current COVID-19
pandemic, enhancing resilience to hazards is key for
disaster risk reduction. This requires robust hazard
and risk information as well as strengthening the
science-policy-society interface to achieve better
risk informed public and private decision-making and
investment for long-term resilience. This UNDRR/ISC
Sendai Hazard Denition and Classication Review
will support and enhance this interaction.
Given its scope and complexity, this report raises
important opportunities for further work. These
are presented in a series of recommendations for
consideration by the UN system, individual countries,
the scientic community and other actors constituting
the disaster risk reduction community.
Ultimately, this report takes stock of how
our understanding of hazards is shifting
as we move from managing disasters as
events to managing risks...
Recommendation 1: Regular review and update
The development and regular review and updating of a standard set of classications of hazards,
and the development of an agreed process of identifying and dening hazards is a critical foundation
for risk-based decision-making and action . It is recommended that the hazard list be reviewed by
the proposed end-users reecting the needs of those involved in disaster risk reduction, emergency
management, climate change, and increasingly sectoral actors pursuing sustainable development.
The latter being consistent with the stipulation of the Sendai Framework that the reduction of
disaster risk is an all-of-society and all-of-State institutions engagement. In particular, it will be
important to have a more detailed scientic review of the list and hazard information proles
(HIPs) for those hazards that are not currently routinely included in disaster risk management,
such as societal hazards. With this review, it will be important to maintain the development of
the HIPs, including the hazard denition and any additional scientic description. This involves
developing the ownership of hazard denitions by bodies that have an intergovernmental process
for agreeing on wording and denition for standardisation, with continuous engagement from
the broader scientic community; and for these coordinating institutions to regularly review
and update the list and hazard denitions. Risk by nature is dynamic hazard denitions and
terminologies must adapt to such a reality.
Recommendation 2: Facilitatethe developmentof a multi-hazard
information system
Enhancing the classication of hazards and facilitating access to the denition and description
of hazards will be important. The next step should be the continuing development of hazard
denitions as online resources, encoded following linked-data and open-science best practices.
Through a meta-data approach, hazards could be tagged to allow for the list to be searched in
multiple ways, thus accommodating diverse user needs. This will involve the development of a
simple hazard denition schema to capture all the details of each individual hazard denition,
including preferred and alternative names, relationships to other hazards (including parental or
causality relationships), and citation of source material. Further alignments to related vocabularies
covering the sustainable development goals (SDGs) of Agenda 2030 and some standard scientic
vocabularies, as well as incorporating additional language functionality to encompass local
hazard terminology, is recommended for future versions.
Recommendation 3: Engaging with users and sectors for greater
alignmentandconsistencyofhazarddenitions.
Engagement with a range of users working in disaster risk reduction, emergency management,
climate change, and increasingly sectoral actors pursuing sustainable development is needed to
further develop hazard denitions. These users are likely to be representatives of Sendai Framework
Focal Points and National Platforms for disaster risk reduction, regional economic and social
commissions, policymakers, communities and practitioners within and across all sectors. By
socialising this report, it will be possible to assess the value of the hazard terminology report and
tool by users and sectors. The HIPs could also be used by the United Nations Statistics Division
and the National Statistical Oces to ensure interoperability and standardisation of statistically
relevant denitions of hazards across the Sendai Framework, Paris Agreement and the SDGs for
use at local, national and international levels. This will ensure synchronisation among global and
national statistical mechanisms and processes.
12 | UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW
Recommendation 5: Conduct further work to operationalise
parameters for exposure, vulnerability and capacity, building on the
UNGAdenitions.
This is a much needed complementary exercise to the hazard denition process, which is the subject
of this report. Exposure and vulnerability, and capacity, together with hazard, are the fundamental
ingredients of risk, yet there is no agreed set of parameters for vulnerabilities or exposures. Much
work has been done in dening and standardising parameters for exposure in the context of natural
or geophysical hazards, and in dening indicators of vulnerability for disaster risk reduction, but no
consensus exists in the denition or application of exposure or vulnerability for use in risk assessment
across the list of hazards within the broad scope of this report. This is an undertaking that could be
charged to the recently established Working Group on Vulnerability and Exposure of the Global Risk
Assessment Framework (GRAF).
Recommendation 6: Address cascading and complex hazards and
risks.
There is an urgent need to investigate further the direct and indirect linkages and effects of natural,
biological, technological and other human-induced hazards to identify better and understand cascading
and complex hazards and risks in a systematic way. The shift towards a broader view and a more
context-dependent denition of hazards requires a systematic approach to risk that considers hazard,
vulnerability, exposure and capacity together and better understands their complex interactions. The
hazard list and associated HIPs may assist the activities of the GRAF, informing efforts to develop an
enhanced understanding of the systemic nature of risk, including the management of systemic risks.
Recommendation 4: Use this hazard list to actively engage
policymakersandscientistsinevidence-basednationalrisk
assessmentprocesses,disasterriskreductionandrisk-informed
sustainable development, and other actions aimed at managing risks
of emergencies and disasters.
This includes supporting the uptake of the hazard list and HIPs as a tool for countries to investigate
the potential sources of risk in their particular context, which requires developing further guidance
for end-users. The guidance would elaborate for UN Member States on the ecient application of
the hazard list in the implementation and monitoring of and reporting on the Sendai Framework
and disaster risk-related SDGs, mainstreaming disaster risk reduction and resilience building with
and across all sectors as agreed in Sendai Framework Global Target E. Relevant activities may
include strengthening the science-policy interface for policy development, open-science research
investments, setting evidence-based legislation and regulations, undertaking national and local
risk and capacity assessments, plan-making, conducting exercise simulations, service delivery,
infrastructure development, community mobilisation, education, monitoring and evaluation and other
forms of capacity development.
Figure1.1Twenty five years of international commitments to disaster risk reduction Credit: UNISDR
1.1 Background
Understanding of hazards and their related impacts in
disaster has evolved since the Yokohama Strategy for
a Safer World (Anon, 1994) and Hyogo Framework for
Action 2005–2015 (UNISDR, 2005), as demonstrated
by the more comprehensive approach articulated in
the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction
2015–2030 (UNDRR, 2015) (‘the Sendai Framework’).
This evolution (see Figure 1.1) has focused on
the scope of hazards, with the Sendai Framework
identifying a wider set of hazards which covers
“natural or man-made hazards, as well as related
environmental, technological and biological hazards
and risks” (Sendai Framework, §15).
The COVID-19 pandemic1 has focused the world on the
importance of addressing biological hazards and the
increasing complexity of the global risk landscape. It
has demonstrated the complex interplay and impacts
that such hazards can have on lives, livelihoods
and health, and brings into sharp focus the need
for implementation of the Sendai Framework. This
hazard spectrum and the increasingly interconnected,
cascading and complex nature of natural and human-
induced hazards, including their potential impact
on health, social, economic, nancial, political and
other systems, are all interlinked in the discussions
on sustainable development and climate change
adaptation. Among others, community and country
resilience is a focus area within several global policy
discussions2.
Yet, while several hazard denition lists exist or
are under development in different sectors and
are informed from different risk contexts (e.g.,
economic, social, political), there is currently no
technical overview available that would provide a
comprehensive picture of hazards to help inform
the policy, practice and reporting of disaster risk
1Introduction
14 | UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW
reduction and management, and so enable the
implementation of global and regional framework
agreements such as the Sendai Framework, the
Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)3, the Paris
Agreement on Climate Change4, and the International
Health Regulations (2005) (WHO, 2016). This lack of a
coherent view of hazards, for example, compromises
the effective reporting by UN Member States for
the Sendai Framework Monitor (SFM) and the
global targets on reduction of mortality, morbidity,
economic loss and damage to basic infrastructure
and disruption of basic services, some of which are
also indicators for the SDGs. Not all countries, for
example, are reporting on mortality and numbers
of people affected by heatwaves, air pollution and
waste-related hazards such as electronic waste,
particularly if these have transboundary impacts.
Lack of a comprehensive document on hazards is also
a barrier to a comprehensive and inclusive approach
to the development and sharing of national and local
disaster risk reduction strategies (from 2020) which
should help to proactively plan for the identication,
enhanced understanding and effective management
of risks associated with the range of hazards that a
country or community faces (UNGA, 2016). It also
affects the scoping, availability and access of multi-
hazard early warning systems (by 2030).
Hazard information when combined with exposure,
vulnerability and capacity is fundamental to all
aspects of disaster risk management, for example,
for risk assessments (before, during and after
events); policy development and review; planning
and implementation of risk management measures;
monitoring and reporting; and for documenting the
losses and damage from hazardous events including
disasters (WMO, 2014). As dened by the Open-
ended Intergovernmental Expert Working Group
(OIEWG) on indicators and terminology relating to
disaster risk reduction, that was adopted by the UN
General Assembly in 2017 (UNGA, 2017), a hazard
is a “process, phenomenon or human activity that
may cause loss of life, injury, or other health impacts,
property damage, social and economic disruption or
environmental degradation” (UNGA, 2016: p.18, 2017).
1.2 The Project
This report presents the results of an international
scientic and technical process convened by the
International Science Council (ISC) and the UN Oce
for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR). The aim of the
study is to dene and describe hazards in order to
facilitate more effective disaster risk management.
The ultimate aim of the process is to contribute to
“the substantial reduction of disaster risk and losses
in lives, livelihoods and health and in the economic,
physical, social, cultural and environmental assets
of persons, businesses, communities and countries”
called for in the Sendai Framework. An initial list of
hazards is presented in this report. The denition of
each hazard is also included, all underpinned by the
UNGA denition of ‘hazard’ which is an important step
to building local, national, regional and internationally
comparable risk and impact information; and will
also promote and allow for a more consistent and
scientic application of hazard information in all
aspects of disaster risk management at the local,
national, regional and global level. The denitions
of the hazards in this report therefore draw from
and leverage existing inter-governmental processes
– as represented by agencies such as the World
Meteorological Organization (WMO), the World Health
Organization (WHO) and the UN Food and Agriculture
Organization (FAO) – that have the mandate for
identifying and dening such hazards as well as for
developing and maintaining their technical standards
over time.
The report provides a basis for countries to review
and strengthen their risk reduction policies and
operational risk management practices, including
the assessment, monitoring and reporting of national
capacities and damage and losses from hazardous
events. It will support future work of the scientic
community on improved understanding and reduction
of complex, compound and cascading risks, as well
as make substantive contributions to the Sendai
Framework Monitor, the Global Assessment Report
on Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR, 2019a), and the
Global Risk Assessment Framework (GRAF)5, the
Integrated Prevention Platform of the UN Secretary-
General6, the SDGs, and disaster risk management
within and across all sectors.
The report provides a basis for countries
to review and strengthen their risk
reduction policies and operational risk
management practices, including the
assessment, monitoring and reporting
of national capacities and damage and
losses from hazardous events.
UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW | 15
1.3 Technical working group
In May 2019, the UNDRR and ISC jointly established
a technical working group (TWG) to identify the full
scope of hazards relevant to the Sendai Framework
and the scientic denitions of these hazards,
drawing on the internationally agreed UN denitions
and available scientic literature. This work was
announced at the 2019 Global Platform for Disaster
Risk Reduction held in Geneva, Switzerland, 13–17
May 2019: “Experts from science, the United Nations,
and the private sector launched a new technical
working group to develop a denitions’ list for the
Sendai Framework hazards.” (UNDRR, 2019b: §14).
Drawing on the existing lists of hazards and technical
expertise in various sectors, the UNDRR-ISC TWG on
Sendai Hazard Denitions and Classication brings
together technical experts from relevant science
groups, UN agencies, the private sector and other
partners to develop technical guidance on the full
range of hazards covered in the scope of the Sendai
Framework. The composition of the TWG is as listed
at Annex 1.
The purpose of the review is to provide a technical
and scientic working paper to inform and support
a collaboration leading to a baseline of knowledge
on hazards. It is provided for consideration and use
by governments, practitioners and civil society in
the area of disaster risk reduction, including but not
limited to national disaster management agencies
or national focal points for disaster risk reduction,
national platforms for disaster risk reduction, local
platforms for disaster risk reduction, multi-sectoral
emergency/disaster management committees or
equivalents, and especially the relevant government
ministries of environment, health, climate change,
and nance. The report has also been informed by and
will be useful to others working in national statistical
oces or equivalents, government scientic agencies,
academia, universities, education and training bodies,
research institutes, the private sector, the insurance
industry, UN agencies and other international
organisations, and communities including community
groups, civil society organisations and networks.
This report does not prescribe the list of hazards which
should be used for risk management applications
for a given geographic area or stakeholder group
because these will be determined by the risk context
and objectives of each stakeholder group. Rather,
the report provides a list of hazards which can be
used to engage stakeholders representing different
risk management interests. Further development
or prioritisation of hazards should be made in the
context of the risk management objectives of each
stakeholder group.
1https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019
2Includingthefollow-upandreviewofthe2030AgendaforSustainableDevelopment,theSendaiFrameworkforDisasterRiskReduction,the
FinancingforDevelopmentprocess,theS.A.M.O.A.Pathway,theParisClimateChangeAgreement,theWarsawInternationalMechanism
for Loss and Damage, and the outcomes of the World Humanitarian Summit.
3https://www.un.org/sustainabledevelopment/sustainable-development-goals/
4https://unfccc.int/process-and-meetings/the-paris-agreement/the-paris-agreement
5https://www.preventionweb.net/disaster-risk/graf
6https://www.un.int/sites/www.un.int/les/Permanent%20Missions/delegate/attachment_the_vision_of_the_sg_on_prevention.pdf
16 | UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW
2.1 Current status
Lists of hazards are available at the international
level from UN agencies, scientic and research
bodies, the insurance industry and other entities.
Furthermore, countries have their own terminology
and denitions embedded in institutional, policy, legal
and scal documents. There is no consistency in the
scope or hazards in these lists nor in the denitions
or descriptions that apply to the hazards. The WHO,
for example, included a hazards classication table in
the Health Emergency and Disaster Risk Management
Framework in 2019 (WHO, 2019: p.22) that covers
the range of hazards including geophysical,
hydro-meteorological, biological, extraterrestrial,
technological, societal and environmental
degradation, all reecting the role of public health in
managing the health risks of all types of hazard.
2.1.1 Use of hazards in the Sendai
Framework Monitor
As part of the initial development of the SFM, 74
hazards were identied and included based on the
OIEWG denitions and the 2014 Peril Classication
and Hazard Glossary by the Integrated Research on
Disaster Risk (IRDR) programme (IRDR, 2014) (see
Annex 2 for the full list as incorporated through a
drop-down menu in the SFM system). The pull-down
menu in the SFM also enables a member state to
add other hazards relevant to its national context.
In this process, countries add phenomena that they
consider a hazard from their own country perspective.
However, these additions are not necessarily made
from a single standardised list that is scientically
categorised. Countries are expected to explain
their choices, which are their prerogative. Hence
the classication of hazards may make it easier for
countries in making such selection for any purposes.
In general, the technical SFM guidance (UNISDR,
2017) species that countries may choose to use any
national methodology for calculations of compound
indicators that are included in the 38 global indicators
of the Sendai Framework indicator system (UNGA,
2Need for a hazard
denitionandclassication
2016: p.5-9), as long as they are compliant with the
specications of the OIEWG report (UNGA, 2016). As
outlined below, countries have interpreted the OIEWG
specications differently as per their national context
including, for example, accounting for societal and
other unclassied hazards.
The drop-down list of 74 pre-dened hazards thereby
serves reporting against all Sendai Framework
indicators (UNGA, 2016: p.10) where those data can be
disaggregated by hazard (number of people affected,
amount of economic losses, etc.). Importantly, the
OIEWG also stipulates that all forms of disaggregation,
including by hazard, will remain optional even
though countries are encouraged to provide as much
disaggregated information as possible.
Generally, SFM data are reviewed in April and October
of each year. Based on hazard-related information
extracted in October 2019, countries had reported
on a total of 1200 separate hazards. This number
includes hazards added with slightly different names,
in different languages and according to other national
specics. The overall number of hazards reported on
by region also differed widely. Including hazards in
different languages is a major challenge, which may
cause double- or undercounting. In the Arab States
region, for example, one country may have reported a
hazard in English while another may have recorded the
same hazard in Arabic. However, it should be counted
as one hazard only.
UNDRR harmonised the hazard list based on commonly
selected hazards, differences in nomenclature owing
to spelling, singular/plural dimension or multi-lingual
origin. The hazards were then grouped as per the hazard
typology provided in the OIEWG report. This resulted
in a total of 318 hazards (Table 2.1). Nevertheless,
several caveats must be noted:
The list is not a scientic product but rather a
guiding document. It was developed on the basis
UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW | 17
of UNDRR’s own understanding and experience,
without any pre-dened idea of the hazard
classication and denitions.
The data entry process for the hazards was
less standardised than that used for the global
indicators because the latter are already dened
in the UN General Assembly Resolution (UNGA,
2016), where countries are free to add new
hazards from their own country perspective. The
reason for this is that indicator-based input is
dened by the OIEWG with common parameters
for all countries, while the choice of hazards was
made by individual countries.
It is possible that there are hazards that countries
chose but did not use for the reporting, such as
assigned loss data or Target (g) scoring that is
related to early warning systems and associated
risk information.
Countries had the choice to enter the hazards in
different UN languages.
2.1.2 DesInventar
DesInventar7 is one of the most popular national
level disaster loss databases. The software system
was rst developed in 1994 and follows an event-
based recording mechanism with individual country
databases being established as and when required.
Since four of the seven global targets of the Sendai
Framework are based on loss accounting, those
countries that have disaster loss databases can more
easily complete their reporting commitments on the
Hazardcategory Numberreported
Biological hazards 34
Environmental hazards 13
Geological or geophysical hazards 44
Hydrometeorological hazards 120
Technological hazards 79
Societal and other uncategorised hazards 28
Total 318
SFM. DesInventar includes a basic list of hazards that
is currently under review (UNDRR, 2020: p.41-45) to
strengthen its alignment with the SFM. As is the case
for the SFM, countries can add hazards specic to
their national contexts in the DesInventar database.
There should be alignment between DesInventar, the
Sendai Framework Monitor on the hazards listed
and the terminology used. This report can provide a
common reference.
2.1.3 Lack of consistency across
international loss databases
There are many groups with well-established loss
databases and approaches for assessing losses
and damage associated with hazard events, beyond
those hazards traditionally of concern in disaster risk
reduction. However, there is a lack of consistency
across these data systems, including the Emergency
Management Disasters Database (EM-DAT8),
DesInventar, those used by global reinsurance groups,
the World Bank9, and the International Federation of
Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC10), as
well as national-level databases. Losses and damage
recorded include deaths, economic losses, and
physical damage and losses for sectors such as the
residential, commercial, industrial and infrastructure
sectors. A comparison of ve sources of disaster
damage and loss data, including EM-DAT, revealed
substantial differences. The database purpose, the
reliability of data sources, and the methodology
employed for analysis have signicant impacts on
the conclusions drawn regarding the overall cost of
disasters, the relative costs of different hazards, and
the distribution of losses across jurisdictions. There
Table2.1 Distribution of hazards reported by countries in 2019 in the Sendai Framework
Monitor according to OIEWG grouping (UNGA, 2016: p.19).
18 | UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW
are also diculties with time series comparisons
owing to what constitutes loss, how that loss is
valued, and how loss changes over time (Ladds et al.,
2017).
A comparative review of country-level and regional
disaster loss and damage databases in 2013 (UNDP,
2013) identied several areas for improving disaster
loss databases including:
Developing country capacity for systematic
disaster data collection, interpretation, use and
clear policy/ operational benet
Improving the quality of disaster loss data
(especially economic losses)
Implementing quality control and validation
procedures
Dening a set of well-dened minimum parameters
to be collected
Completing and applying standards for hazard
event recording and loss attribution
Promoting disaster loss database use (especially
policy applications)
Exploring the use of new information
communication and technology (ICT) for loss and
damage assessment and damage-database.
2.2 Standardisation in nomenclatures of hazard information
The need for a more systematic approach and
standardised characterisation of hazards has been
raised by many intergovernmental and scientic fora.
The Africa-Arab States Regional Platform 201811
highlighted the need for countries to “Accelerate
efforts to ensure all African and Arab States
systematically collect and account for disaster
losses by 2020, using the Sendai Framework Monitor,
to inform risk assessments to guide the investment
decisions of development planners, business leaders,
risk ocers and nance ministries. The 2018
Cartagena Declaration12 emphasised “the importance
of increasing knowledge about the phenomena that
cause the loss of lives and damage to infrastructure
in our territories that do not recognize administrative,
economic, social or environmental boundaries”
and highlighted “the need to have information that
supports decision making with respect to Disaster
Risk Reduction, nancial protection, preparation for
disaster management and post-disaster recovery
processes”. The 2018 Ulanbataar Declaration13
commits “to greater accountability for disaster risk
reduction, including through systematically collecting
and recording disaster damage and losses, conducting
and sharing risk assessments and analysis to inform
national and local strategies, establishing monitoring
baselines, and using the Sendai Framework Monitor
to assess progress in achievement of global and
national targets”.
The need for greater consistency in hazard terminology
has also been highlighted by multiple international
bodies and reports including: the Open-ended
Intergovernmental Expert Working Group on indicators
and terminology relating to disaster risk reduction;
Counting on the World to Act (SDSN TRENDS, 2019);
the UNDRR 2018 Technical Forum: Leveraging on
the Sendai Framework Monitoring (SFM) process in
support of the implementation of the 2030 Agenda
and the Paris Agreement (UNDRR, 2018); and the
Global Heat Health Information Network14.
For the UN agency networks, the Sendai hazard
denition and classication project has beneted
from the revised UN Plan of Action on Disaster Risk
Reduction for Resilience: Towards a Risk informed
and Integrated Approach to Sustainable Development
(UNDRR, 2017), which is the contribution by the UN
system to ensure the implementation of the Sendai
Framework contributes to a risk-informed and
integrated approach to achieving the SDGs. The UN
Plan of Action has addressed the need for coherence
and mutual reinforcement of the UN’s resilience
building efforts, in part by aligning the scope of
hazards. It notes that in the 2016 plan, revised after the
adoption of the Sendai Framework, the plan provides
for a stronger alignment of the UN’s work in disaster
risk reduction with other UN system-wide approaches
on related issues.
UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW | 19
Monitoring and reporting of events and their impacts,
and making assessments of the risks that contribute
to disasters are elements of an overall approach
to risk reduction and management. Thus, in the
broader domain of risk management, countries are
applying the principles and practices of (disaster) risk
management to a very wide range of risks. To measure
and monitor these risks, it is essential to have clear
denitions of the underlying hazards, that is, the
processes, phenomena or human activities which,
together with vulnerability, exposure and capacity,
all contribute to disaster risk. Without this, while it is
possible to monitor impacts, it is not possible to use
this information effectively to understand or measure
risk, and in turn to develop appropriate disaster risk
management measures.
As an example, when the Indian Ocean Tsunami
occurred in December 2004, there was little
understanding of tsunami risk, particularly in the
Indian Ocean region where an event of this scale
had no historical precedent, and the knowledge base
of tsunami impact was generally poor (Bernard and
Titov, 2015). This event, however, gave rise to the
rapid development of capability to provide warnings
and to mitigate risks. Unfortunately, much of the
modelling of potential impact was done without fully
understanding the nature of the hazard, leading to
many tsunami scenarios that were unrealistic. It
was in this context that UNESCO published the rst
internationally recognised guidelines on tsunami risk
assessment in 2009 (UNESCO, 2009). It is now well
understood in the disaster management community
that a tsunami is mainly caused by earthquakes
that displace the sea oor, followed by volcanic
eruptions/ collapse, landslides (that can be caused
by earthquakes and volcanic activity), and asteroids.
A better denition of the hazard sources paved the
way to better understanding of tsunami behaviour/
likelihood, and in turn to more realistic scenarios
for disaster management or disaster risk reduction
strategies.
A standard denition of hazards provides the basis for
establishing the relationships between the sources or
triggers for disaster events worldwide. Furthermore,
an international reference set of hazards together
with standardised denitions is the foundation of a
uniform database of loss data/ information, which in
turn makes a useful contribution to the forecasting
of future events. Such standardisation can then be
used for all aspects of risk management, from multi-
hazard risk assessments to warnings and alerts, to
disaster response and recovery, long-term planning
and public awareness. Thus, armed with better
hazard and risk information that is consistent and
appropriately combined worldwide, communities at
local and national scales will be able to determine the
best possible strategies for mitigating or reducing the
impacts of future events.
Loss data are essential to validating estimates
of risk. For extensive events (i.e., events that
occur frequently at local scale) risks can be
estimated through statistical models, built upon the
relationships between hazard frequency and intensity
and resulting impact (e.g., mortality or economic
loss). Estimates of risk related to events that occur
more rarely (i.e., intensive) require an aggregation of
events and statistical analysis over broader areas
or longer timeframes. Ultimately though, the risk of
rare events can only be estimated if it is possible to
understand how the related components of hazard,
exposure, vulnerability and capacity are combined.
For instance, some hazards are dened by factors
such as magnitude, intensity, duration and spatial
extent of the hazard source or phenomenon. The
exposure constitutes the population, buildings or
other assets that are vulnerable to damage or loss. If
only the damage or loss data are accurately captured
in the database, then the relationships between
hazard, exposure and vulnerability, and the effect
of the capacity to manage these risks, cannot be
determined. It follows that without appropriate and
consistent denitions and measurements of hazards,
loss databases cannot be used to understand risk
at any scale. As a starting point, better denitions
will lead to better understanding and awareness
and, in turn, to better measurement or monitoring of
hazards so that critical information about hazards
can be effectively captured in databases, for example,
those designed for improved risk reduction and loss
estimations. Information, including spatial extent
or dispersion, rate of onset, frequency, duration,
magnitude and intensity measurements, are critical.
Thus, methodologies for measuring hazards must
also be standardised as part of the longer-term
process of developing information for enhanced
disaster risk reduction.
2.3 Importance of dening hazards for risk-informed decision-
making and risk reduction
20 | UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW
The creation of a hazard list and associated
standardisation of hazard names and denitions
are fundamental to risk assessment, monitoring and
management of associated risks. Not all hazards
are relevant to all countries and the hazards that are
reported upon by countries through loss databases
or risk assessments should remain exible. However,
some hazards should be a part of standardised
reporting requirements. For instance, all countries,
should report on oods and earthquakes or disease
outbreak, even if the history for such events is rare.
Since although in any one location they may be
rare, given that they are ubiquitous and occur with
potentially catastrophic consequences, it is essential
that they are monitored and their risks be assessed
globally (e.g., the risk of pandemic as exemplied by
COVID-19). In contrast, some hazards do have a very
specic local context and may not be meaningfully
assessed and reported outside that context. An
example is Dzud, which is a sudden change in
temperature or extended conditions of extreme
temperature (Fernández-Giménez et al., 2012). Dzud
is a signicant hazard in Mongolia, where the name
originates, but is not a commonly recognised hazard
globally.
Thus, it is recommended that stakeholders and
organisations should use the hazard list to identify
which hazards will require risk management. They
should also consider which hazards are obligatory
for monitoring and reporting, versus those that
may be considered optional or specic to certain
conditions, depending on the application or purpose
for hazard or loss monitoring and reporting. Such
considerations should also include changing risk
landscapes, possibly induced or exacerbated by
climate change or environmental degradation, as well
as the potential for rare events such as earthquakes
or heat waves in places with no previous recorded
history of such events.
2.4 Hazard event characterisation
There is a distinction between a hazard and a
hazard event. While a hazard “may cause loss of
life, injury or other health impacts, property damage,
social and economic disruption or environmental
degradation”, a (hazard event or) hazardous event is
the “manifestation of a hazard in a particular place
during a particular period of time”(UNGA, 2016).
The characterisation of a hazard event varies from
one type of hazard to another. For example, some
natural hazard events can be characterised in terms
of variables such as duration, magnitude, location,
and timing. Internationally-accepted standards exist
for characterising some hazards in these terms,
but not all of them, and many hazards do not occur
as well-dened events including many biological,
technological and societal hazards. Drought is an
example of a creeping phenomenon that has slow
onset, unlike a ash ood with sudden onset and
which exhibits in various forms (e.g., hydrological,
agricultural). Some hazards are routinely observed
and reported by government institutions or scientic
networks while others are not, such as soil erosion or
household air pollution. Extreme ooding and drought
events are usually well recorded but newly emerging
risks accompanying climate variability and climate
change are often not well captured or framed (such
as what constitutes a heat wave in areas where they
have not previously been recorded). Hazard events
are also sometimes dicult to isolate precisely, such
as three weeks of widespread, intermittent heavy
rainfall associated with a spatially- and temporally-
extensive atmospheric low-pressure system. One
hazard event can also trigger another (referred to as
a ‘compound hazard’). For example, heavy rainfall
leading to a landslide, or a volcanic eruption leading
to a landslide that triggers a tsunami with limited
observation and no early warning for such a case in
place. These challenges make hazard event denition
for the purpose of risk reduction and loss or damage
attribution genuinely challenging. Guidelines for
addressing these challenges have been proposed
(Below et al., 2009) but are not universally applied,
except for the International Health Regulations 2005
(WHO, 2016) which are globally agreed and legal
binding via the ministries of health and the WHO.
Although such guidelines may reect international
standards for hazard characterisation where such
exist, except for the International Health Regulations
(2005), the guidelines themselves do not currently
enjoy formal international standard status. The WMO
is working on the standardisation of data and meta-
data for more than 20 meteorological, hydrological
and climate-related hazards for enhanced disaster
UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW | 21
risk reduction, as well as geo-referencing the loss and
damage data as one of its key aspects.
The issue of loss and damage has become an
important consideration within the UN Framework
Convention on Climate Change15. In this context,
climate-related losses and damage can include those
associated with long-term, incremental processes
(often referred to as slow-onset events such as
droughts) as well as extreme hazard events (e.g.,
oods). Incremental loss and damage such as coral
bleaching, salinisation, desertication and coastal
erosion could be annualised rather than reported on
7 https://www.desinventar.net/
8 https://www.emdat.be/
9 https://www.worldbank.org/
10 https://www.ifrc.org/en/who-we-are/the-movement/ifrc/
11 https://www.preventionweb.net/les/57759_communiqueofthechair.pdf
12 https://eird.org/pr18/docs/cartagena-declaration.pdf
13 https://www.preventionweb.net/les/56219_ulaanbaatardeclarationnal.pdf
14 https://www.ghhin.org/
15 https://unfccc.int/topics/adaptation-and-resilience/workstreams/loss-and-damage-ld/warsaw-international-mechanism-for-loss-and-
damage-associated-with-climate-change-impacts-wim
an event-by-event basis. Incorporating these types
of losses would, however, require an expanded set
of parameters, and the degree to which these could
be standardised would need further investigation.
Applying unique event numbers in this context
would also need reconsidering. The types of
losses and damage associated with incremental
processes (often referred to as slow-onset events)
are otherwise comparable to those associated with
hazard events, provided they can be attributed to
an environmental change or process and the unit
of losses and their economic equivalencies can be
estimated.
22 | UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW
As a scientic endeavour, the TWG has been guided
by the denition of ‘hazard’ adopted by the UNGA
in February 2017: “a process, phenomenon or
human activity that may cause loss of life, injury or
other health impacts, property damage, social and
economic disruption or environmental degradation”
(UNGA, 2016, 2017; see also Annex 3). Historically,
there was a tendency to associate the term ‘hazards’
with ‘natural phenomena’, often with a sudden or
acute impact, and ‘hazardous materials’. The UNGA
denition, however, reects the evolution over several
decades of the eld of disaster risk reduction to a
broader scope of hazards leading to events with
both short- and long-lasting effects. This wider view
is reected in the Sendai Framework and in the
policy and practice of various sciences, sectors and
organisations (e.g., non-governmental organisations
and community-based organisations) involved in
disaster risk management.
It is important to recognise that the expanded
denition of hazard as a process, phenomenon
or human activity, requires an examination of the
relationship between the concepts of hazard,
exposure, vulnerability and capacity, where ‘hazard’
is the potential occurrence of an event within a
prescribed time and space; ‘exposure’ constitutes the
assets of interest and at risk (such as the environment,
the economy, buildings, or people); ‘vulnerability’
is the susceptibility of those assets to damage or
impact to a hazard; and ‘capacity’ is the “combination
of all the strengths, attributes and resources available
within an organisation, community or society to
manage and reduce disaster risks and strengthen
resilience” (UNGA, 2016). In this construct, a hazard
event can occur without human consequences (e.g.,
a tree falling in the woods when no-one is there or
a magnitude 9 earthquake occurring in a desert
where no-one is living). Including human activities as
potential hazards, means now considering hazards
that potentially conate the previous concepts of
hazard, vulnerability and exposure. For instance, urban
infrastructure systems failure would be considered
a vulnerability from the point of view of possible
impacts of an earthquake, but may also be considered
a hazard from the perspective of a systems engineer,
who may see the potential failure itself as the hazard
(with multiple sources). In the latter case, the risk
would correspond to the impact on the exposed
population (e.g., due to lack of water or power) and,
in turn, the vulnerability would be the relationship
between that failure and its impact on the population.
The concepts of hazard, vulnerability and exposure
remain, but may be applied differently depending on
the context of the problem. Flooding provides another
example of how the context and perspective of
different actors can affect the perception of a hazard.
To many farmers, normal ooding is an essential
part of maintaining soil fertility and wetlands, while
to road users it is a dangerous hazard; a ood may
therefore be characterised as both a benet and a
hazard depending on context.
3Conceptual framework
for identifying hazards
3.1 Hazard and the other dimensions of risk
3.2 Applying the UNGA denition of hazard in this project
A range of views emerged within the TWG and among
stakeholders consulted on the types of hazard that
should be considered within the scope of this project
and that meet the UNGA denition of hazard (see
Section 3.1). A long list of hazards were considered,
including those that reect contemporary and future
challenges in society such as cybersecurity.
As the UNGA denition offered the potential for a wide
and varied interpretation and an expansive, almost
innite, list of hazards depending on the scope and
granularity being considered, the TWG developed a
set of boundary criteria for including and excluding
hazards. These criteria do not redene hazards but
were developed to keep the project focused and
UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW | 23
feasible, while recognising that there could be many
other phenomena, activities and processes that could
arguably meet the UNGA denition of hazard but
that might be better considered for future work. The
inclusion and exclusion criteria were developed and
modied through consensus and consultation within
the TWG and with a wider group of stakeholders.
Initial discussions centred on identifying which of the
proposed hazards did not meet the UNGA denition or
should not be included in this project for some other
reason. The complexity of hazards was recognised
at an early stage. In some cases, there is complex
interplay within a group of hazards which converge
and result in a hazard event. For example, a global
nancial crisis is dicult to describe and dene as
a specic hazard, and was considered too complex
to be included. Many biological hazards that would
not have the potential to cause even a small-scale
emergency or disaster and that would normally only
require routine management procedures were also
excluded.
This discussion informed the development of the
following inclusion criteria:
1. The hazard has the potential to impact a
community: this criterion puts the focus on those
hazards that may have an effect at the population
or community level and thus require system-wide
risk management measures, as distinct from
hazards that may have serious consequences for
individuals concerned and where risk management
measures tend to be focused at the individual level.
2. Proactive and reactive measures are available:
this criterion reects the need to implement
practical risk management measures to prevent
new and reduce existing and residual risks (i.e.,
before, during and after hazardous events), and
to address the dynamic nature of evolving risks. It
also implies that proactive and reactive measures
could be developed or applied in future.
3. Thehazardhasmeasurable spatial and temporal
components: this criterion reects that hazardous
events, including disasters, are manifestations
of hazards and have temporal and spatial
dimensions.
The inclusion criteria were dened for the purpose of
this project to manage the potentially innite scope
of hazards to consider under the UNGA denition.
Their denition is part of an iterative and deliberative
process towards a systematic approach to hazard
identication, description and classication that
should be rened over time. The TWG applied the
inclusion criteria to a set of potential hazards that
had been compiled from a wide range of sources and
stakeholders. To be included in the hazard list for this
project, the hazard had to full all of the inclusion
criteria. Table 3.1 provides four examples of the
application of operationalising criteria.
Complex human activities and processes where
it was dicult to identify a single or limited set of
hazards were excluded. Compound and cascading
hazards, also fell outside the scope of this project, but
are recommended for attention in future activities.
Underlying disaster risk drivers, dened as “processes
or conditions, often development-related, that
inuence the level of disaster risk by increasing levels
of exposure and vulnerability or reducing capacity”
(UNGA, 2016: p.24) were also excluded.
Climate change is an example of an underlying disaster
risk driver. As dened by the Intergovernmental Panel
on Climate Change, climate change refers to “a change
in the state of the climate that can be identied (e.g.,
by using statistical tests) by changes in the mean
and/or the variability of its properties, and that
persists for an extended period, typically decades or
longer. Climate change may be due to natural internal
processes or external forcings such as modulations
of the solar cycles, volcanic eruptions and persistent
anthropogenic changes in the composition of the
atmosphere or in land use(IPCC, 2013). As dened
by the WMO (WMO, 2011), the standard period for
averaging weather-related variables at a location
(e.g., temperature, precipitation, wind) to what is then
termed ‘climate’ is 30 years, which is a broader form of
measurement than most hazard-specic denitions
and their resultant impact (e.g., physical damage, loss
of life).
Other examples of underlying disaster risk drivers
can be found in vulnerabilities or the level and type
of capacities available. These risk drivers may
include poverty and inequality (UNGA, 2016); weak
governance; weak alignment and coherence in
policy, nancial instruments and institutions; lack
of disaster risk considerations in land use planning
(Sudmeier-Rieux et al., 2015; UNDRR, 2019c) and in
natural resource management and use; declining
ecosystems; unplanned and rapid urbanisation; non-
disaster risk-informed policy; lack of regulations
and incentives for private disaster risk reduction
investment; demographic change; complex supply
chains; and limited, or increased, availability of
technology.(UNGA, 2016).
24 | UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW
CRITERIA DECISION
Isitahazard
accordingtothe
UNGAdenition?
Doesithavean
impact on the
functioningofa
community?
Are proactive
and reactive
measures
availableto
managethe
hazard?
Doesthehazard
havemeasurable
spatialand
temporal
components?
Isitacomplex
hazard?
Measles YES. Measles
infection can lead
to serious health
complications,
including death.
YES. Measles is
highly contagious
thus outbreaks
can easily occur,
particularly in
unvaccinated
communities,
which can lead
to epidemics,
associated with
serious health
and economic
consequences.
YES. Effective
vaccination
programmes are
available.
YES. Epidemics
are distinct in
place and time.
They are limited
by the infectious
period of measles
and the degree
and number of
contacts with
susceptible
individuals.
NO. Multiple
factors can
inuence the
risk of acquiring
measles
infection, but
the infection
itself has a
single cause –
the rubella virus.
Include
E-waste
(Electronic
waste)
YES. E-waste
was recognised
as hazardous
waste in the
Basel Convention.
It can cause
severe damage to
human health and
the environment
through
contamination of
soil, groundwater
and air with toxic
materials.
YES.
Contamination of
the surrounding
environment
can lead to
population-level
health problems
such as adverse
perinatal and
natal effects.
YES. Formal
infrastructure
which ensures
(for example)
proper
decontamination,
recycling and
recovery of items
of economic
value can
signicantly
reduce harmful
effects.
YES. The degree
of the hazard is
proportionate
to the toxicity
and volume of
waste, and is
concentrated
in formal or
informal disposal
sites, although
the effects can
be widespread
geographically.
NO. The
underlying
causes are well
understood and
clear.
Include
Thunderstorm
asthma
YES.
Thunderstorm
asthma can
trigger asthma
attacks which
can lead to
serious health
problems and
occasionally
death.
NO.
Thunderstorm
asthma tends to
affect individuals
rather than
communities
and is relatively
uncommon.
NO. Specic
proactive
measures
to manage
thunderstorm
asthma are
unavailable.
YES. It is limited
by the duration
of the weather
conditions
triggering the
symptoms.
NO.
Thunderstorm
asthma is
specically
associated with
thunderstorms.
Exclude
It does not
generally
have
community
impact and
there are
no alerting
processes
or proactive
measures to
manage the
hazard.
Self-directed
violence
YES. Self-
inicted injuries
are among the
leading causes of
death, ill-health
and disability in
young adults.
NO. Self-directed
violence tends
to occur as
independent
events and do
not impact the
community
as does an
epidemic.
YES. Approaches,
such as
community-
based efforts,
are directed to
the prevention
of self-directed
violence through
improvement of
mental health.
YES. Cases of
self-directed
violence occur as
distinct events in
space and time.
YES. Self-
directed
violence
is usually
associated
with the mental
health state of
the affected
individuals.
Exclude
It does not
affect the
functioning of
a community.
Table3.1 Examples of the application of operationalising criteria
UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW | 25
Another consequence of allowing the inclusion of
human activity in the denition of a hazard is that
it recognises that some hazards are created or
inuenced by humans. Earthquakes are nominally
considered a natural hazard, but can also be
induced by human activity such as mining or
uid injection for enhanced oil recovery. Tropical
cyclone frequencies can increase due to climate
change, and oods may become more severe due
to soil degradation from deforestation. Informal
settlement can be seen as a vulnerability in the
context of ood damage, but a hazard in the context
of urban development.
Allowing hazards to be dened contextually,
explicitly recognises that addressing hazards and
associated disaster risk requires many actors
operating from the natural to the human, societal
and cultural context. In contemporary society,
hazards have become increasingly complex, with
triggers or cascading effects that turn what would
be considered a hazard in one context into a risk
in another, with different actors managing hazard
risks in their respective contexts. In turn, by
recognising the complexities of the hazard domain,
it is important to remember to integrate them and
understand the correlations or interactions between
hazards. In this sense, the TWG has created the
basis for a systematic approach to dening hazards
which allows for linkages and interactions between
hazards to be described in order to understand the
behaviour of hazards and assess risks as a system.
3.3 Need to better account for the inuence of human activity
26 | UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW
4Proposed hazard list
4.1 Main data sources
A review of existing hazard glossaries and
terminologies (Annexes 4 and 5) was conducted
in order to compile an initial hazard list (Annex
6), and to understand the gaps between available
resources and the breadth of hazards encompassed
within the Sendai Framework. For this project, the
terminologies and denitions considered fall into one
of the following three categories: approved through
an intergovernmental process; approved through a
scientic peer review process; and generally accepted
by the expert community but not yet peer-reviewed or
approved at the intergovernmental level. Examples
of the third category include some commonly used
wildre and ood denitions. The sources used
included, but were not restricted to:
The United Nations, including the UNDRR and other
UN bodies, programmes, funds and specialised
agencies (published documents and ocial web
sites)
Authoritative scientic and technical sources
such as DesInventar (see Section 2.1.1), the Global
Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction
2019 (UNDRR, 2019a), INFORM16, EM-DAT17,
Evidence Aid18, Swiss Re Sigma19 and Glide20, as
well as other established sources, such as the
Disaster Information Management Research
Center21, universities, scientic organisations
and scientic journals.
The websites of key UN organisations, such as
the WMO and WHO, were accessed systematically
to identify published glossaries and hazard
terminologies. All sources concerning disasters,
emergencies, and hazards were considered. These
were then used to compile an initial draft of the
hazard list. The most useful sources were:
IRDR Peril Classication and Hazard Glossary
(IRDR, 2014)
Report of the OIEWG on Indicators and
Terminology Relating to Disaster Risk Reduction
(UNGA, 2016)
UNDRR Sendai Framework Monitor hazards
reported by UN Member States (UNDRR, 2019d)
UNDRR Prevention Web list of hazards (UNDRR,
2019c)
WHO Health Emergency and Disaster Risk
Management Framework (WHO, 2019), which
includes a comprehensive list of hazards.
4.2 Consensus building
The hazards compiled from the review of existing
glossaries was used as a basis for the rst draft of the
new hazards list. The TWG used an iterative process
of developing and reviewing the list through an
extensive consultation process involving relevant UN
organisations and the wider disaster risk reduction
scientic community (see Annex 7 for a summary
of the process and methodology). An online survey
of around 500 scientists was conducted early in
the process to gather feedback on the draft list of
hazards that had emerged from compiling the hazard
glossaries. TWG members also used opportunities for
consultation in relevant fora including the global and
regional Science, Technology and Advisory Groups
(STAGs) in Africa, Europe, Asia Pacic and the Arab
States and the meeting of the scientic committee of
the IRDR programme.
The UNDRR provided the opportunity via its regular
UN focal point meetings to foster greater inter-agency
consensus in support of the hazards project. Through
this mechanism, they were able to facilitate extensive
UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW | 27
and helpful interaction with relevant UN partners
to determine, via the UN science and technical
networks, where different UN agencies were involved
in disaster risk reduction and management of the
wide variety of hazards addressed in the hazard list.
The engagement of scientists working within the UN
system has been critical to the successful delivery of
this work, particularly at the WMO, WHO, FAO, ITU22,
UNECE23, and many other agencies.
The ISC leveraged its unique role as the global voice
for science to facilitate access to scientists based in
key networks and international scientic unions and
associations. Notably, these include the IRDR network,
the Committee on Data for Science and Technology24,
the Group on Earth Observations25, the Global
Earthquake Model Foundation26 and other networks.
The role of the private sector was also recognised as
critical to this work, and for this reason the Insurance
Development Forum was invited to become a partner.
The Insurance Development Forum27 is a public-
private partnership led by the insurance industry and
supported by international organisations, with the aim
of optimising the use of insurance and its related risk
management capabilities to build greater resilience
and protection for people, communities, businesses,
and public institutions that are vulnerable to disasters
and their associated economic shocks. An additional
network partner invited to join this work on hazards
was the IFRC as it is the world’s largest humanitarian
network with 192 national societies and over 13.7
million volunteers. Their involvement ensured the
views and needs of communities were not forgotten.
This project has enabled extensive consultation via
a survey run by the ISC, a workshop involving the
scientic committee and other experts of the IRDR28
programme, and collaboration across the UN system
and with the scientic community from a wide range
of disciplines and sectors to address the breadth of
possible hazards and leverage existing resources
and expertise to support more coordinated and
holistic efforts to understand and address disaster
risk. In addition to wide engagement with a range of
stakeholders throughout the process, a short survey
was circulated to over 500 expert individuals from
the wider advisory group (comprising academic
researchers, scientists and practitioners employed
in the private sector or in non-governmental
organisations, and policy specialists), the IRDR
network and the international scientic unions.
Feedback from this survey resulted in specic
suggestions for improvement to the draft hazard list
and these were used to inform the nal list.
4.3 Overall hazard list
The 2014 IRDR Peril Classication and Hazard
Glossary (Annex 8; IRDR, 2014) was a major effort
to develop a hazard glossary and contributed to the
Hyogo Framework for Action 2005–2015 (UNISDR,
2005) by improving information on key hazards
and their impacts. The IRDR Peril glossary focused
on natural hazards (geophysical, hydrological,
meteorological, climatological) with the addition of
the categories [types] biological and extraterrestrial.
In keeping with the Sendai Framework (UNDRR,
2015) which adopted an all-hazards approach and
the UNGA denition (UNGA, 2016), this project led to
the consideration of natural, biological, man-made/
technological, chemical, societal, and environmental
hazards. In addition, all categories in the IRDR
Peril glossary have been expanded, especially the
biological and extraterrestrial categories. These were
identied as gaps from the outset of this project
given the diversity of biological hazards for humans,
animals and plants, and the associated risks to
societies worldwide.
Hazards were clustered by type (e.g., environmental,
hydrological, meteorological). Overall, the types reect
the categorisations of hazards encompassed by the
Sendai Framework, with the addition of ‘societal’
hazards. The TWG chose to develop a ‘at’, that is,
non-hierarchical list recognising that a hierarchical
classication does not adequately capture the
complex interplay between different hazards. However,
to aid readability, the TWG decided to represent the
hazards in a grouped structure with hazard types
and hazard clusters. The TWG also decided on a high
level of granularity in the specication of hazards
(e.g., different types of ood, chemical, disease) to
enable multiple uses of the hazard list and associated
hazards denition. The clustering of hazards in this
report is not to be prescriptive as to the relationships
of one hazard to another hazard or to many hazards.
In total, 302 hazards were included in the list (see Annex
6) with 88 biological hazards, 60 hydrometeorological
hazards, 53 technological hazards, 35 geohazards,
28 | UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW
25 chemical hazards, 24 environmental hazards, 9
extraterrestrial hazards and 8 societal hazards.
The hazard list compiled in this report is open-ended.
It is not intended to be a nal or denitive list. Experts
from different scientic disciplines and sectors,
different parts of the world, as well as different
users and policymakers in the hazards arena,
among many other potential users of this material,
will have their own view on how a hazard should be
classied and even whether it should be included.
For example, acid rain is categorised in this hazard
list as a meteorological/ hydrological precipitation-
related hazard. It can also be caused by volcanic
emissions, for instance around Kilauea volcano in
Hawaii. These are all legitimate ways of looking at
hazards. As a result, while the TWG considers the
list to be the best that can be produced under the
circumstances, it is not a denitive statement and
should be regularly reviewed and updated through
consensus at the international level. The emphasis
is on agreeing scientic denitions for the identied
hazards that then allows for enhanced risk reduction
and their characterisation and links to loss data. The
list is a tool to help countries investigate the potential
sources of risk in their context.
4.4 Description of hazard clusters
4.4.1 Meteorological and hydrological
hazards
Meteorological and hydrological hazards are those
resulting from the state and behaviour of the Earth’s
atmosphere, its interaction with the land and oceans,
the weather and climate it produces, and the resulting
distribution of water resources. According to EM-
DAT, from 1979 to 2019, 50% of all recorded disasters
(including technological and ‘complex’ disasters),
56% of deaths and 75% of economic losses are
attributed to weather, climate and water-related
hazards. Some of the most devastating hazards
include tropical cyclones, drought, riverine oods, and
heatwaves. These hazards are observed, monitored,
and forecasted by the national meteorological and
hydrological services of each country.
4.4.2 Extraterrestrial hazards
Extraterrestrial hazards are those originating outside
the Earth, such as asteroid and meteorite impacts
or solar ares. Solar ares have the potential
to cause widespread disruption and damage to
communications satellites and to electric power
transmission, resulting in large economic losses.
Asteroid impacts may cause signicant local damage,
and are capable of catastrophic destruction, including
mass extinction on a global scale (extremely rarely).
4.4.3 Geohazards
Geohazards are hazards with a geological origin.
They have been divided into three hazard clusters,
two of which – seismogenic and volcanogenic – are
the result of Earth’s internal geophysical processes,
and a third – shallow geohazards – are the result
of surface or near-surface processes, generally
resulting in erosion or some type of mass movement.
Seismogenic hazards, commonly referred to as
earthquakes, give rise to specic hazards such as
ground shaking, subsidence or ground rupture, but
can also trigger hazards such as tsunami or rockfall.
Volcanogenic hazards give rise to a wide range of
hazards from lava ow and rockfall to ashfall and
ground gases. Some geohazards may be partially
induced or exacerbated by human activity, such as
earthquakes or sinkholes from mining activity, or
coastal erosion from deforestation.
4.4.4 Environmental hazards
Environmental hazards arise through degradation
of the natural systems and ecosystem services
upon which humanity depends. Ecosystem services
including air, water, land, biodiversity, and some key
earth processes are threatened by environmental
degradation, here dened as loss of utility.
Degradation can be a very gradual process and be
hard to discern on a day-today basis. This includes
biodiversity loss, land salination, loss of permafrost,
and the marine equivalents – including loss of sea ice.
Globally distributed contaminants in the atmosphere
and oceans are having major impacts on the Earth’s
climate systems and food chains, and plastics are
now a major cause of environmental degradation.
Degradation can also be very rapid as with sudden
contamination, deforestation or other disturbance.
UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW | 29
Degradation may also be accelerated by human
activity. Storm surge impacts are exacerbated by the
destruction of coastal and marine ecosystems (e.g.,
coral, mangroves and sea grass) and sand mining
in rivers affects currents and lowers the water table,
causing changes in ood and drought patterns. The
impacts of environmental degradation are often seen
most clearly through other hazards. For example,
landslide susceptibility is increased by deforestation
and the intensity and frequency of oods, droughts
and heat waves are inuenced by changes in climate
and land cover.
4.4.5 Chemical hazards
Use of chemicals has increased dramatically in many
sectors, including industry, agriculture and transport,
with people exposed to chemicals both of natural and
human origin in the environmental and technological
domain. The CAS register29 contains more than 160
million organic and inorganic chemical substances,
including alloys, coordination compounds, minerals,
mixtures, polymers and salts. The TWG considered
it important to include chemical hazards that have
immediate (acute) effects, as well as chronic effects,
often resulting from long-term exposures with adverse
health outcomes, such as damage to the nervous and
immune systems, impaired reproductive function
and development, cancer and organ-specic damage
(Prüss-Ustün et al., 2011). Toxicovigilance is the active
process of identifying and evaluating toxic risks in a
community, and evaluating measures taken to reduce
or eliminate them. Few chemical hazards have been
included in the Hazard Information Proles and most
relate to the WHO’s ten chemicals of major public
health concern (WHO, 2010), as well as to persistent
organic chemicals and more generic hazards such
as chemical res. The CBRNE (chemical, biological,
radiation, nuclear, or explosion) hazard cluster is
wider than military weapons, and includes endemic
diseases, epidemics, industrial chemicals, explosion
hazards, pollution, and terrorist threats. Corrosive,
ammable, and toxic chemicals pose several types of
hazard.
4.4.6 Biological hazards
Biological hazards, which cover a range of hazards
of organic origin, can cause signicant loss of life,
affecting people and animals at the population level,
as well as plants, crops, livestock, and endangered
fauna and ora, and can lead to severe economic
and environmental losses (Wannous et al., 2017).
They include pathogenic microorganisms, and toxins
and bioactive substances that occur naturally or are
deliberately or unintentionally released. Bacteria,
viruses, parasites, venomous animals and mosquitoes
carrying disease-causing agents are also examples of
biological hazards. Exposure to zoonotic pathogens
is often the source of emerging infectious diseases in
humans, which puts a focus on risk assessment and
risk management measures at the human-animal-
environment interface. Many biological hazards have
not been considered within the scope of this initiative
as they do not conform to inclusion and exclusion
criteria or meet the additional criteria that have been
applied. These include being specically referenced
in the International Health Regulations (2005) (WHO,
2016), appearing in the list of notiable diseases of
several countries, causing disease at the national
or global level, and having epidemic potential. Many
biological hazards have been grouped into clusters,
while other more prominent hazards have been
identied individually, such as locusts. For example,
a single outbreak of desert locust can affect as many
as 65 of the world’s poorest countries, and up to 20%
of the Earth’s land mass (Cressman et al., 2016).
Pathogenic microorganisms and toxins have unique
characteristics that can make them particularly
challenging to identify and manage, such as agent
diversity (many different microorganisms and toxins)
and different routes of transmission (airborne and
droplet, infestation, ingestion, animal vectors and
blood borne). These hazards may also pose a high
risk for epidemics and pandemics, particularly
from microorganisms that are highly virulent.
Other disasters, such as from natural hazards,
may exacerbate conditions for biological hazards,
including damage to water infrastructure and the
introduction of a novel pathogen to a susceptible
community. Biological hazards may also increase in
incidence and lethality, and in geographic localisation
and seasonal patterns due to sensitivity to climate
or changes in land use (Wannous et al., 2017).
Examples of recent large outbreaks, epidemics or
pandemics include COVID-19 (from 2019), Ebola in
the Democratic Republic of Congo (2018–2020) and
West Africa (2013–2016), and the Zika virus in the
Americas and Pacic regions (2015–2016).
4.4.7 Technological hazards
A characteristic of technological systems is their
complexity, with many dependent subsystems. Thus,
failure of one element within this system has impacts
that spread throughout the chain. However, impacts
can also occur outside the system, with a wide
spectrum of impacts ranging from national interests
30 | UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW
such as state security, to economics, health, and basic
human needs. Technological hazards arise from the
possibility of failure of an existing technology as well
as from emerging technologies. These are increasing
due to the scope of technological expansion and are
relatively untested and subject to unintended uses.
Technological hazards involve all transport systems
(land, sea, air) and can affect the infrastructure
that supports these systems as public and private
services. Radiation and nuclear materials can lead to
hazards, including accidents at nuclear power plants,
industrial radiation device accidents, and mis-use of
nuclear weapons. Conventional explosive hazards
include millions of landmines not yet located, as
well as improvised explosive devices used in mining
activities. They can cause trauma and burns and
may pose long-term risks for survivors, including
infections, kidney damage and adverse mental health
effects. A new set of emerging technological risks
under the Sendai Framework include ICT-related
hazards. There is continuous and growing dependency
on information and communication technology to
support essential infrastructure operations such as
health, banking, transportation, energy, education and
many other services that are an important component
of emerging smart cities and village development
concepts, businesses, and homes. With high levels of
data ow and communication performance levels, the
network architectures underlying these developments
are interconnected and growing in scale and
complexity which are then exposed to cyber security
threats (Liu and Ji, 2009; Hasegawa and Uchida,
2019). Cybersecurity threats are increasing year-by-
year, these drivers can be described as cyber-related
viruses, worms, Trojan horses, spoong attacks and
identity theft. Cyber hazards can include the illegal
disclosure of stolen data, data that have been altered
by illegal means or malware, unexpected loss of
data, and contamination of data. Other related issues
include non-performance of components, wireless
communication connectivity issues, malware, attacks,
misconguration due to human error, power failure,
natural hazards and disasters (Erjongmanee and Ji,
2011; Djatmiko et al., 2013; Arif and Wang, 2018). The
TWG recognised the critical importance of cyber and
other technological hazards and agreed to include
them in the Sendai Framework review of denitions.
4.4.8 Societal hazards
Societal hazards are brought about entirely or
predominantly by human activities and choices, and
have the potential to endanger exposed populations
and environments. They are derived from socio-
political, economic activity, cultural activity and human
mobility and the use of technology, but also of societal
behaviour either intentional or unintentional. Societal
hazards also have the potential to result in disasters
and cause significant numbers of deaths, illness,
injury, disability and other health effects, disruption to
societal systems and services, and social, economic
and environmental impacts. As this is a very broad
category that includes technological and chemical
hazards, a more restricted type is needed to include
some societal processes and phenomena. The scope
of the societal hazards considered by this review was
determined from the initial identification and review
of existing hazard glossaries and terminologies
(Annexes 4 and 5). This showed that some hazard
glossaries did include terminology specifically related
to violence and conflict, and that such hazards were
also being reported under the SFM by some member
states. While recognising the potential sensitivities in
this area, the TWG agreed that this warranted further
consideration from a scientific perspective. The
Sendai Framework does not include terms referring to
‘armed conflict’, ‘social instability or tension’. However,
these hazards are recognised under international
humanitarian law and national legislation. There is
evidence that some regional and national disaster risk
reduction strategies adopt definitions of hazards that
encompass terminology associated with terms such
as ‘violence’ and ‘armed conflict’ (Peters et al., 2019).
This is also true for some individual agency definitions
of a hazard, such as those of the IFRC and WHO, as
well as various risk management indexes, such as the
Index for Risk Management – INFORM (De Groeve et
al., 2015). Terms related to violence and conflict are
included here as part of all-hazard considerations and
ensure commonly agreed definitions for any hazard,
regardless of the subsequent action that might result
from different policy frameworks. The expanded
scope of the societal hazards in this list serves to
reflect the conceptualisation of a hazard as defined
by governments, agencies and end users – reflecting
its intended use across sectors and at global, regional
and national level. During the hazard review process,
it became clear that more research was needed to
inform our understanding of the full scope of societal
hazards that should be considered under the Sendai
Framework, since there is not an established corpus
of scientific knowledge in the field of societal hazards.
This is recommended as an area for future work (see
Section 7, Recommendation 1).
UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW | 31
From the project outset, it was agreed that hazard
denitions would be sourced from the highest
possible authority (such as a UN body), and should
be scientically robust, and of broad international
relevance. It was also agreed that the TWG would
develop a common template to be applied to
all hazards to aid the compilation of consistent
denitions and descriptions across the hazard list.
Once the template was agreed, a ‘hazard information
prole’ (HIP) was completed for each hazard by a
scientic expert in that eld. The HIP includes a
denition of the specic hazard and in annotations:
synonyms, metrics and numerical limits, key UN
conventions and multilateral treaties. In a non-
exhaustive manner, it also indicates examples of
drivers, outcomes and risk management measures.
The HIPs were reviewed by subject-matter experts
from the scientic community and/or from relevant
UN agencies to check that the hazard descriptions are
scientically robust and reect the latest scientic
consensus on the issues under consideration. Annex
9 provides further details on the review process for
the HIPs, with a full list of authors and reviewers
included in Annex 1.
4.5 Scientic description of individual hazards
4.6 Need for user-driven classications
The TWG deliberately chose not to propose a xed
hierarchy but rather to take a more exible relational
approach (i.e., ontology), which recognises that
hazards can change identity depending on context.
However, it is desirable to group the hazards into a
set of categories to aid identication, reporting, and
allocation of effort. A long list is commonly arranged
in a hierarchy, usually a single hierarchy, such that
each item (hazard) appears in one place within a
‘decision’ tree. However, there are multiple potential
axes of classication, all of which may be useful to
support different functions. These include:
broad families (biological, meteorological,
economic, etc.)
genesis (i.e., the causative event, such as
earthquake, cyclone, pandemic)
participation (e.g., the specic material,
chemicals, pathogens involved)
scale (e.g., local, regional, national, international).
For example, global pandemic vs local ash
ood.
Alongside classications, there are also conceptual
relationships between hazards, in particular
specialisation (broader-narrower) relationships (e.g.,
SARS and COVID-19 are both coronavirus infections;
riverine-, coastal- and ash-oods are all special
types of ood).
If a single hierarchy (tree) is desired, choices must
therefore be made about how to nest these, as well
as where ‘best’ to locate items within the tree. For
example, mass-ows can be caused by earthquakes,
volcanoes, rainfall, or subsidence. Usually only
a subset of the axes can be used coherently.
Furthermore, the semantics of the relationships often
change going downwards – classications at the
upper levels of the tree slide over into specialization
at the bottom, with different depths and transitions in
different branches of the tree.
Modern knowledge organisation and management
systems overcome these challenges by enabling
each item, in this case each hazard, to belong to more
than one category. Items are classied in multiple
dimensions allowing user-dened searches, known
as ‘facetted searches’30, rather than a single pre-
dened hierarchical tree. This approach is widespread
in online library collections and retail, among other
areas. Furthermore, specialisation (of broader-
narrower relationships) is distinct from classication.
While presentation of these in a conventional linear
document is more complicated, functionality is much
better.
Previous hazard and peril classications have
used various combinations of these approaches to
classication. A basic clustering has been used in the
development of the new hazard denition set, primarily
to support the allocation of experts in the review cycle.
But a more complete set of classications should be
introduced when the hazard list is put online.
32 | UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW
16 https://www.europe.undp.org/content/geneva/en/home/partnerships/
inform--index-for-risk-management-.html
17 https://www.emdat.be/
18https://www.evidenceaid.org/evidence-collections/
19https://www.swissre.com/institute/research/sigma-research.html
20 http://glidenumber.net/glide/public/search/search.jsp
21 https://disasterinfo.nlm.nih.gov/disaster-lit
22 https://www.itu.int/en/Pages/default.aspx
23 https://www.unece.org/info/ece-homepage.html
24 https://codata.org/
25 https://www.earthobservations.org/index.php
26 https://www.globalquakemodel.org/
27 https://www.insdevforum.org/
28 http://www.irdrinternational.org/what-we-do/overview/
29 https://www.cas.org/about/cas-content
30 Facettedsearchisusedinmanye-commercesites,suchase-Bayand
Amazon–classiersselectedontheleftofthepagegeneratedifferent
result sets.
UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW | 33
The hazard list and associated descriptions are
fundamental to the needs of a holistic multi-
hazard risk assessment and risk reduction process.
The hazard list establishes a common basis for
monitoring and cataloguing hazard information, and
for informing disaster risk reduction and loss data
5Potential applications
collection, disaster warnings and response, risk
mitigation and reduction, and risk communication,
including public awareness. This section highlights
some of the potential applications of the approach
developed as part of this project and the resulting list
and denitions of hazards.
5.1 Use at national and global level
The hazard list is designed to help improve national
reporting and ability to measure specic hazards
in a more standardised way. National bodies and
scientic agencies use a variety of standards for
hazard measurement, recording, and archiving
in hazard databases. For example, U.S. hazard-
focused agencies such as the National Oceanic
and Atmospheric Administration31 (NOAA), National
Aeronautics and Space Administration32, Federal
Emergency Management Agency33, United States
Geological Survey34 and Centers for Disease Control
and Prevention35, among others, may nd this hazard
list useful in rening existing and future hazard-
focused data sets and products. In the United States,
there are numerous major databases such as NOAA’s
Storm Data (NOAA, 2018) and the U.S. Billion-dollar
Weather and Climate Disasters (NOAA, 2020) that
have different hazard denitions. A standardised
hazard set, with denitions and metadata, can help
improve research synergy across existing and future
hazard databases.
One area that would benet countries is in using
the HIPs for international hazard identication. For
example, the HIPs may be useful to coordinate data
collection and standards for a North American ood
methodology currently under development. This effort
seeks to develop a standardised approach for costing
of ood damage and losses in Canada, Mexico and
the United States. Development of the HIPs supports
a need for a glossary of terminology offering global
(UN-agreed) denitions and standard international
metrics/ measures, as dened in the HIPs. The HIP
guidance could be particularly useful for ood hazard
denitions, as there are many types of ood hazard
(ash ood, uvial ood, groundwater ood, ice jam
ood, snowmelt ood etc.) for which denitions may
vary by country.
National-level standardisation then feeds into the
regional and global levels if hazard nomenclature is
used from the international level. As a result, there is
standardisation and comparability at the national,
regional and global level to facilitate improved hazard
reporting to the Sendai Framework, the SDGs and
the Paris Climate Agreement. In addition, the hazard
list is both granular and not too expert-orientated for
most statistical purposes and for the output/user
perspective. This design reects the Best Practice
Guidelines for Statistical Classication (UNSD, 2013).
Additional perspectives may be useful from groups such
as the United Nations Statistical Division (UNSD) Expert
Group on Statistical Classication to widen usage of
the classication beyond specialists in disaster-risk.
34 | UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW
5.2 Cataloguing loss and damage
The frequency and intensity of disasters from hazard
events have been increasing over time for a number
of reasons (e.g., increased exposure and vulnerability)
and the hazards themselves are expected to intensify
with the effects of a range of ‘complex wicked
challenges’ (Funtowicz and Ravetz, 1993), including
climate change. Enhancing resilience to hazards is
key for disaster risk reduction.
The WMO has approved a methodology (WMO, 2019)
that will provide national partners with the ability to
more systematically and accurately attribute risks
and impacts (loss and damage) of hazards to causal
phenomena (hazards). The methodology centres on
an event-unique identier that includes parameters
that detail the event hazard name, temporal and
spatial information, and linkage to other events as
well as specic contextual information that will aid
stakeholders in loss and damage accounting in
attributing losses to the causal phenomena. The
two central parameters of this methodology are the
hazard name and linkages.
It is important to ensure that event names (hazards)
are standardised globally to ensure comparison of
events regionally and globally. In this regard, the
WMO has approved an initial list of hazards to be
used with its cataloguing initiative. This comprises
hazards under the WMO mandate for which their
names and denitions have been agreed by its
members (countries). This initiative by UNDRR/ISC is
a building block for a reference list of hazard (event)
names for a wide range of hazards as envisioned by
the Sendai Framework.
The linking parameter is an innovation that provides
the capability to cluster events according to larger-
scale phenomena (e.g., heavy rain, strong winds,
storm surge ooding and landslides to a tropical
cyclone) as well as linking of cascading events. This
feature makes this methodology scalable from local
(micro-event) to larger phenomena, including the
climate time-scales.
5.3 Multi-hazard early warning systems
The Sendai Framework recognises the signicant
benets of multi-hazard early warning systems
(MHEWS) in saving lives and livelihoods. It urges a
paradigm shift in the way risk information is developed,
assessed and used within MHEWS, disaster risk
reduction strategies, and government policy.
In 2017, the United Nations agreed on the denition of
an early warning system as “An integrated system of
hazard monitoring, forecasting and prediction, disaster
risk assessment, communication and preparedness
activities systems and processes that enables
individuals, communities, governments, businesses
and others to take timely action to reduce disaster
risks in advance of hazardous events” (UNGA, 2016:
p.17). In other words, a MHEWS is designed to cope
with multiple hazards occurring simultaneously or
cumulatively over time, and any potential cascading
impacts and provides relevant impact and risk
information to enable individuals, communities and
organisations threatened by a hazard to prepare and
act appropriately and in sucient time to reduce the
possibility of harm or loss. A MHEWS warning uses and
incorporates impact and risk information in its warning
services, integrates social and nancial capacities and
technical systems through coordination mechanisms
among multidisciplinary stakeholders, and ensures that
effective feedback and improvement mechanisms are
in place. Impact information refers to hazard warning
messages that address the possible impacts of hazard
events on lives and livelihoods. Risk information refers
to information that is derived from risk assessment(s).
Understanding the hazard and its associated
risk depends on reliable quality assured data and
information including historical loss and damage
data. This information is a major building block for the
development of impact-based warnings transitions
from focusing only on the accuracy of hazard-based
forecasting to also outlining the potential impacts of
a forecast – an evolution from ‘what the weather
will be’ to ‘what the weather will do’. This requires
a paradigm shift for stakeholders in disaster risk
reduction at the national level to establish common
platforms or mechanisms for sharing the different
aspects of risk information (hazard, exposure,
vulnerability) (Figure 5.1).
Multi-hazard early warning systems take advantage
of this information through the conduct of multi-risk
analysis which is then translated into hazard warnings
that detail possible impacts on specic at-risk people,
communities and economic sectors (Figure 5.2).
Figure5.1 Paradigm shift of how risk information is communicated and used Credit: WMO.
Figure5.2Use of risk information in multi-hazard early warning systems is key to the development
of impact informed hazard warnings and information (WMO, 2018). Credit: WMO.
36 | UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW
Multiple and diverse aspects of hazards, exposure,
vulnerability, resilience and capacity to prevent,
prepare for, respond and recover from disasters
are studied by a variety of scientic disciplines and
specialised scientic centres that may not have a
direct mandate in disaster risk reduction (De Groeve
and Casajus Valles, 2015). Likewise, disaster risk
reduction policies are developed and implemented
by a range of agencies involving not only those
in charge of emergency management but also of
nance, health, economy, environment, agriculture,
and land-use planning, among others. This leads
to a complex science-policy interface. Science
plays a signicant role in monitoring, analysing,
understanding emerging risks, developing
information on hazards and their impacts, and
developing early warning. In addition, science has a
major role to play at the interface between science,
policy and practice to inform the development
of plans and regulations and jointly construct
knowledge through exchange and co-evolution
between scientists and decision-makers, which is
currently limited (De Groeve and Casajus Valles,
2015). Knowledge is often generated in collaboration
to increase its practicability (Weichselgartner and
Kasperson, 2010; De Groeve and Casajus Valles,
2015). In order to bridge decision-makers and
scientists, disaster risk needs to be treated in a
science-policy context, in the overlapping space of
scientic research and political decision-making
and public action (White et al., 2010; De Groeve and
Casajus Valles, 2015).
5.4 Need to strengthen the science-policy interface
31 https://www.noaa.gov/
32 https://www.nasa.gov/
33 https://www.fema.gov/
34 https://www.usgs.gov/
35 https://www.cdc.gov/
UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW | 37
6.1 Scientic debates
The precise denition of the term ‘hazard’, as shown in
the previous sections, varies by discipline and sector.
The disaster risk reduction sector has until recently
viewed a hazard as a distinct phenomenon emanating
from nature, such as an earthquake or lightning
strike. This is the approach taken in the IRDR Peril
Glossary (IRDR, 2014), although it broadens inclusion
to biohazards. Based on the Sendai Framework and
the report of the OIEWG (UNGA, 2016), the denition
of ‘hazard’ in the disaster risk reduction context has
been broadened considerably to include phenomena,
processes, and activities. The debate applies
especially to the denitions of man-made hazards,
and understanding of environmental, technological,
and biological risks as mentioned in paragraph 15 of
the Sendai Framework (UNDRR, 2015). This applies
particularly to hazards not traditionally listed as such
in the natural hazards eld. This broader approach to
dening a hazard is well reected in other areas of
policy and science.
The International Standards Organisation (ISO)
denes a hazard as a “source with a potential to
cause injury and ill health” (ISO/DIS 45001: denition
3.19). In safety and health-related areas, the denition
of hazard is generally consistent with the ISO, and is
dened broadly to include all (or most) factors that
could result in harm. This also aligns with the all-
hazards approach set out in the Sendai Agreement.
For example, the Canadian Centre for Occupational
Health and Safety states that: “General examples
6Scienticdebates
and limitations
[of workplace hazards] include any substance,
material, process, practice, etc. that has the ability
to cause harm or adverse health effect to a person
or property (CCOHS, 2017).
While there is general agreement that the term
hazard should be dened broadly, there is debate
about the boundaries of the concept, with some
arguing for example, that potential process control
failures are not hazards (SIA, 2012). However
such arguments do not detract from the general
view in safety-related policy and practice and its
supporting science that a hazard includes mis-
use of substances (such as a toxin), phenomena,
processes, activities and behaviours. In the
safety arena this broad denition often extends
to social hazards including violence, for example,
by including workplace harassment and violence
(Government of Western Australia, 2020) and other
social issues such as cyber security and crime. This
contemporary practice aligns with the denition
used in this report.
Key debates also concern the denitions of
specic hazards, which carry linguistic and cultural
challenges. Hazard denitions may be different in
different languages, both national and local, and
indigenous communities may have completely new
hazard denitions. Finding a way to capture the full
spectrum of regional and local hazard terminology
is a major challenge, but important to address.
6.2 Limitations
There are several important limitations to this
review, namely the consultation process, the
comprehensiveness of the list of hazards, and
variations in the granularity for different hazards.
The consultation process. There are two aspects to
the limitation on the consultation process: the size of
the scientic and UN community subset consulted,
and its representativeness. In terms of size, signicant
38 | UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW
efforts were made to engage the scientic community
throughout the project, both formally (as members
of the TWG and/or respondents to the scientic
consultation survey) and informally (at key meetings
such as the Global Platform). Over 500 scientists were
engaged. Although a large number, this represents
a small subset of the vast global scientic and UN
expert community. In terms of the representativeness
of the subset consulted, one of the key aims of the
project was to make clearer the broadened scope of
hazards that Sendai asks governments to consider for
disaster risk reduction, beyond the traditional focus, to
include those of a societal, biological or technological
nature. Traditional disaster risk reduction networks,
by denition, do not necessarily have members
from these areas. Inclusion of experts on these less
traditional hazards was a challenge. In particular,
there was insucient expertise on societal hazards.
Other groups not fully represented in the consultation
process were UN Member States and policymakers
(whose involvement was considered outside the
technical and scientic scope of the project from the
outset, but who have been identied among the prime
users of the hazard list) as well as other non-scientic
and non-technical individuals and groups with local,
regional and national levels of expertise. Although
efforts were made to engage at the regional level (for
example, through presence and discussion at the
UNDRR European Science and Technology Advisory
Group) these groups were under-represented overall,
not least due to language bias given that the project
was undertaken solely in English. This has had
various consequences, including a lack of regional
terminology in the hazard list presented in this report.
Comprehensiveness of the hazard list: A second key
limitation of this project is that the list of hazards
identied is far from comprehensive. However, this
was not the intention anyway as a fully comprehensive
list might not be possible even with increased time
and resources. Plus, what is to be included and why,
should be subject to ongoing revision. Although the
development of inclusion parameters was crucial to
operationalising an all-hazard approach, there are
inevitable shortcomings. And so, rather than providing
a comprehensive overview of all hazards globally,
the hazard list may be more accurately described as
providing a living, operational overview of hazards
globally. Indeed, the parameters were agreed by
consensus of the TWG, without the goal of making
it comprehensive or optimal. In accordance with
Recommendation 1 (Section 7), further work should
consider a review (by UN Member States and other
users of this report) of the inclusion criteria as part
of an ongoing review of hazards that are not currently
included, in acknowledgement that this is a dynamic
and ever-evolving catalogue.
Level of granularity. The potential for inconsistency
in the level of granularity from one ‘type’ of hazard
to another is another major limitation. Attempts
were made to mitigate this following the results
of the scientic stakeholder survey, however a full
overview of all included hazards is inevitably limited
by individual expertise. As such, it is important to
recognise that there may be discrepancy in the level
of detail across different hazard types and clusters.
Revisiting levels of granularity is therefore another
important part of future revisions of the hazard list.
UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW | 39
The current COVID-19 outbreak shows the importance
of embedding the identication and denition of
hazards into a dynamic, and multidisciplinary process
that enables the inclusion of new and emerging
hazards, and to capture interactions between
different hazards. Emergency and disaster risk
management actors have an important role to play
in engaging a wide range of actors and integrating
knowledge across disciplines and sectors to improve
understanding and management of risk.
7Recommendations
This report describes the preliminary results of
a scientic and technical process (Figure 7.1) to
dene and describe hazards in order to facilitate
more effective disaster risk management. Given its
scope and complexity, the work raises important
questions and opportunities for further work. These
are presented in the following recommendations to
the UN system, countries, scientic community and
other actors constituting the risk community.
Figure7.1 Schematic overview of the UNDRR / ISC Sendai Hazard Definition and Classification Review
40 | UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW
Recommendation 1: Regular review and update.
The development and regular review and updating of a standard set of classications of hazards, and
the development of an agreed process of identifying and dening hazards is a critical foundation for risk-
based decision-making. It is recommended that the hazard list be reviewed by the proposed end-users
reecting the needs of those involved in disaster risk reduction, emergency management, climate change,
and increasingly sectoral actors pursuing sustainable development. The latter being consistent with the
stipulation of the Sendai Framework that the reduction of disaster risk is an all-of-society and all-of-State
institutions engagement. In particular, it will be important to have a more detailed scientic review of
the list and hazard information proles (HIPs) for those hazards that are not currently routinely included
in disaster risk management, such as societal hazards. With this review, it will be important to maintain
the development of the HIPs, including the hazard denition and any additional scientic description.
This involves developing the ownership of hazard denitions by bodies that have an intergovernmental
process for agreeing on wording and denition for standardisation, with continuous engagement from
the broader scientic community; and for these coordinating institutions to regularly review and update
the list and hazard denitions. Risk by nature is dynamic – hazard denitions and terminologies must
adapt to such a reality.
Recommendation 2: Facilitate the development of a multi-hazard
information system.
Enhancing the classication of hazards and facilitating access to the denition and description of
hazards will be important. The next step should be the continuing development of hazard denitions
as online resources, encoded following linked-data and open-science best practices. Through a meta-
data approach, hazards could be tagged to allow for the list to be searched in multiple ways, thus
accommodating diverse user needs. This will involve the development of a simple hazard denition
schema to capture all the details of each individual hazard denition, including preferred and alternative
names, relationships to other hazards (including parental or causality relationships), and citation of
source material. Further alignments to related vocabularies covering the sustainable development goals
(SDGs) of Agenda 2030 and some standard scientic vocabularies, as well as incorporating additional
language functionality to encompass local hazard terminology, is recommended for future versions.
Recommendation 3: Engaging with users and sectors for greater
alignmentandconsistencyofhazarddenitions.
Engagement with a range of users working in disaster risk reduction, emergency management, climate
change, and increasingly sectoral actors pursuing sustainable development is needed to further develop
hazard denitions. These users are likely to be representatives of Sendai Framework Focal Points and
National Platforms for disaster risk reduction, regional economic and social commissions, policymakers,
communities and practitioners within and across all sectors. By socialising this report, it will be possible
to assess the value of the hazard terminology report and tool by users and sectors. The HIPs could
also be used by the United Nations Statistics Division and the National Statistical Oces to ensure
interoperability and standardisation of statistically relevant denitions of hazards across the Sendai
Framework, Paris Agreement and the SDGs for use at local, national and international levels. This will
ensure synchronisation among global and national statistical mechanisms and processes.
UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW | 41
Recommendation 4: Use this hazard list to actively engage policymakers
and scientists in evidence-based national risk assessment processes,
disasterriskreductionandrisk-informedsustainabledevelopment,and
other actions aimed at managing risks of emergencies and disasters.
This includes supporting the uptake of the hazard list and HIPs as a tool for countries to investigate the
potential sources of risk in their particular context, which requires developing further guidance for end-
users. The guidance would elaborate for UN Member States on the ecient application of the hazard
list in the implementation and monitoring of and reporting on the Sendai Framework and disaster risk-
related SDGs, mainstreaming disaster risk reduction and resilience building with and across all sectors as
agreed in Sendai Framework Global Target E. Relevant activities may include strengthening the science-
policy interface for policy development, open-science research investments, setting evidence-based
legislation and regulations, undertaking national and local risk and capacity assessments, plan-making,
conducting exercise simulations, service delivery, infrastructure development, community mobilisation,
education, monitoring and evaluation and other forms of capacity development.
Recommendation 5: Conduct further work to operationalise parameters
forexposure,vulnerabilityandcapacity,buildingontheUNGAdenitions.
This is a much needed complementary exercise to the hazard denition process, which is the subject
of this report. Exposure and vulnerability, and capacity, together with hazard, are the fundamental
ingredients of risk, yet there is no agreed set of parameters for vulnerabilities or exposures. Much
work has been done in dening and standardising parameters for exposure in the context of natural or
geophysical hazards (e.g., Silva et al., 2018), and in dening indicators of vulnerability for disaster risk
reduction (e.g., Beccari, 2016), but no consensus exists in the denition or application of exposure or
vulnerability for use in risk assessment across the list of hazards within the broad scope of this report.
This is an undertaking that could be charged to the recently established Working Group on Vulnerability
and Exposure of the Global Risk Assessment Framework (GRAF).
Recommendation 6: Address cascading and complex hazards and risks.
There is an urgent need to investigate further the direct and indirect linkages and effects of natural,
biological, technological and other human-induced hazards to identify better and understand cascading
and complex hazards and risks in a systematic way. The shift towards a broader view and a more
context-dependent denition of hazards requires a systematic approach to risk that considers hazard,
vulnerability, exposure and capacity together and better understands their complex interactions. The
hazard list and associated HIPs may assist the activities of the GRAF, informing efforts to develop an
enhanced understanding of the systemic nature of risk, including the management of systemic risks.
42 | UNDRR / ISC SENDAI HAZARD DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION REVIEW
Anon, 1994. Yokohama Strategy and Plan of Action for a Safer World Guidelines for Natural Disaster Prevention,
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ANNEX | 45
ANNEX 1
Technical Working Group members, contributors and reviewers
Annexes
TWG members
Chair: Virginia Murray, Integrated Research for Disaster Risk/Public Health England
Jonathan Abrahams, World Health Organization
Chadi Abdallah, UNDRR Arab STAG (Lebanese National Council for Scientic Research)
Lucille Angles, United Nations Educational, Scientic and Cultural Organization
Djillali Benouar, UNDRR Africa STAG (University of Science & Technology Houari Boumediene)
Alonso Brenes Torres, Integrated Research for Disaster Risk
Chang Hun Choe, International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies
Simon Cox, Committee on Data for Science and Technology (CODATA)
James Douris, World Meteorological Organization
Qunli Han, Integrated Research for Disaster Risk
John Handmer, International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis; Integrated Research on Disaster
Risk programme; School of Science, RMIT, Australia University
Simon Hodson, Committee on Data for Science and Technology (CODATA)
Wirya Khim, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Nick Moody, Insurance Development Forum Risk Modelling Steering Group
Osvaldo Luiz Leal Moraes, UNDRR Panama Oce Science Group (Brazilian Early Warning Monitoring
Centre for Natural Disasters)
Michael Nagy, United Nations Economic Commission for Europe
James Norris, Group on Earth Observations Secretariat
Urbano Fra Paleo, UNDRR European STAG
Pascal Peduzzi, UN Environment
Aslam Perwaiz, UNDRR Asia-Pacic STAG (Asian Disaster Preparedness Center)
Katie Peters, Overseas Development Institute
Jack Radisch, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development
Markus Reichstein, Knowledge Action Network on Emergent Risks and Extreme Events
John Schneider, Global Earthquake Model Foundation
Adam Smith, UNDRR North America STAG (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration)
Claire Souch, Insurance Development Forum Risk Modelling Steering Group
Annisa Triyanti Young Scientist, UNDRR Global STAG (Utrecht University)
46 | ANNEX
Co-facilitators
Anne-Sophie Stevance, International Science Council
Irina Zodrow, United Nations Oce for Disaster Risk Reduction
Project support team
Project support lead: Lucy Fagan, Public Health England
Paula Gabriela Villavicencio Arciniegas, Public Health England - supported by the Universities of
Excellence Scholarship from the Ecuadorian Government (November – December 2019)
Sonny Greenley, Public Health England (August 2019)
Lidia Mayner Flinders University, Adelaide, South Australia (May – December 2019)
Rajinder Sagoo, supported by UNDRR (September – December 2019)
Olga Shashkina-Pescaroli, supported by International Science Council, (September – December
2019)
Zhenya Tsoy, International Science Council
Robert Verrecchia, Public Health England (April- September 2019)
Sarah Walker, Public Health England (April - August 2019)
Natalie Wright, Public Health England (September 2019 – March 2020)
Library services courtesy of Knowledge & Library Services of Public
Health England and Evidence Aid
Claire Allen, Evidence Aid
Anne Brice, Public Health England
Caroline De Brún, Public Health England
Mike Clark, Queens University, Belfast
Emma Farrow, Public Health England
Benjamin Heaven Taylor, Evidence Aid
Lidia Mayner, Flinders University, Australia
Authors of the Hazard Information Proles (HIPs)
Thorkild Aarup, Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission
Chadi Abdallah, UNDRR Arab STAG (Lebanese National Council for Scientic Research)
Sarah Adamczyk, Overseas Development Institute
Bernadette Abela-Ridder, World Health Organization
Jonathan Abrahams, World Health Organization
Irina Ardeleanu, Coventry University
Kiran Attridge, Public Health England
Djillali Benouar, UNDRR Africa STAG (University of Science & Technology Houari Boumediene)
Costanza Bonadonna, University de Genève
ANNEX | 47
Gracia Brisco, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Sarah Cahill, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Emily Campbell, Massey University
Zhanat Carr, World Health Organization
Denis Chang-Seng, Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission
Callum Chapman, Public Health England
Lorcan Clarke, London School of Economics and Political Science
Paul D Cole, University of Plymouth
Simon Cox, CODATA
Shoki Al Dobai, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Sophie Von Dobschuetz, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
James Douris, World Meteorological Organization
Eleonora Dupouy, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Fazil Dusunceli, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Maged El-Kahky, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Tina Endricks, Public Health England
Lucy Fagan, Public Health England
Esther Garrido Gamarro, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Robin Gee, Global Earthquake Model Foundation
Johann Goldammer, Global Fire Monitoring Center
Baogen Gu, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
John Handmer, Integrated Research for Disaster Risk
Claire Horwell, Durham University
Maria van Hove, National Institute for Health and Care Excellence
Emma Hudson-Doyle, Massey University
Ko Ida, Public Health England
Ahmed El Idrissi, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Evgenia Ilyinskaya, Leeds University
Lydia Izon-Cooper, Public Health England
Susanna Jenkins, Earth Observatory Singapore
Akiko Kamata, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Elizabeth Kaussman, European Commission Joint Research Center
Geunhye Kim, World Meteorological Organization
Gael Lamielle, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Jostacio Lapitan, World Health Organization
Ronald Law, Department of Health, Philippines
Esteban Leon, United Nations Human Settlements Programme
Dina Mansour-Ille, Overseas Development Institute
Pablo Tierz Lopez, British Geological Survey
Susan Loughlin, British Geological Survey
Juan Lubroth, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
48 | ANNEX
Lidia Mayner, Flinders University, Australia
Peter McGowran, King’s College London
Samia Metwally, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Nick Moody, Insurance Development Forum Risk Modelling Steering Group
Peter F. Moore, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Susan Loughlin, British Geological Survey
Osvaldo Luiz Leal Moraes, UNDRR Panama Oce Science Group (Brazilian Early Warning
Monitoring Centre for Natural Disasters)
Virginia Murray, Public Health England
Felix Njeumi, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
James Norris, Group on Earth Observations
Pascal Peduzzi, UN Environment
Aslam Perwaiz, UNDRR Asia-Pacic STAG (Asian Disaster Preparedness Center)
Gianluca Pescaroli, University College London
Katie Peters, Overseas Development Institute
Laura Elizabeth Peters, Oregon State University
Jeremy Phillips, University of Bristol
Julio Pinto, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Eran Raizman, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Melba Reantaso, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Andriy Rozstalnyy, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Rajinder Sagoo, UN Oce for Disaster Risk Reduction, Independent Consultant
Rita Der Sarkissian, Lebanon National Council for Scientic Research,
Shiroma Sathyapala, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
John Schneider, Global Earthquake Model Foundation
Chloe Sellwood, NHS England
Olga Shashkina-Pescaroli, International Science Council
Adam Smith, UNDRR North America STAG (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration)
Richard Styron, Global Earthquake Model Foundation
Elisabetta Tagliatti, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Shinji Takarada, Japanese National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology
Annisa Triyanti Young Scientist, UNDRR Global STAG (Utrecht University)
Robert Verrecchia, Public Health England
Paula Villavicencio, Public Health England
Ian Walker, Public Health England
Sarah Wallace, Public Health England
David Williams, World Health Organization
Mark Woodhouse, University of Bristol
Natalie Wright, Public Health England
Weining Zhao, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
ANNEX | 49
Review of the HIPs
Review coordinator: Anda Popovici, International Science Council
Reviewers:
Kathryn Alberti, World Health Organization
Javed Ali, Centre national de la recherche scientique (CNRS)
Trevor Allen, Geoscience Australia
Craig Arthur, Geoscience Australia
Barbara Bannister, Honorary Consultant, Royal Free Hospital
Tom Beer, Safe System Solutions, Australia
Lynette Bettio, Australian Bureau of Meteorology
Alex Blackburn, United Nations Economic Commission for Europe
Peter Bridgewater, University of Canberra
Francesca Cenni, Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Conventions
Jean-Luc Chotte, Institut de recherche pour le développement (IRD)
Raffaello Cioni, Università degli Studi di Firenze
Emanuela Corsini, Università degli Studi di Milano
Fuqiang Ciu, World Health Organization
Kim Currie, University of Otago
Maral Dadvar, Stuttgart Media University
John Henderson Duffus, The Edinburgh Centre for Toxicology
Alexandra Fleischmann, World Health Organization
Kaushal Raj Gnyawali, Himalayan Risk Research Institute
Bernd Grambow, IMT Atlantique
Dave Griggs, Monash University
Martin Guard, UN Environment Programme
Santosh Gurung, World Health Organization
Michael Hapgood, RAL Space
David Heymann, Chatham House
Stefan Hoyer, World Health Organization
Qudsia Huda, World Health Organization
Salmaan Inayat-Hussain, Petroliam Nasional Berhad (PETRONAS)
Yvan Hutin, World Health Organization
Hélène Jacot des Combes, National Disaster Management Oce of the Republic of the Marshall
Islands
Gary Jones, UNAIDS
René Kastner, Disaster Competence Network Austria
Hannes Kern, IRIS - Industrial Risk and Safety Solutions
Hwirin Kim, World Meteorological Organization
Paul Kovacs, ICLR – The Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction
Mike Long, University College Dublin
Melanie Marti, World Health Organization
50 | ANNEX
Holly Michael, University of Delaware
Margaret Montgomery, World Health Organization
Osvaldo Moraes, Centro Nacional de Monitoramento e Alertas de Desastres Naturais
(CEMADEN), Brazil
Brayton Noll, University of Twente
Elizabeth Mumford, World Health Organization
David Olson, World Health Organization
Peter Olumese, World Health Organization
Orhan Osmani, International Telecommunication Union
Ursula Oswald Spring, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México
Ana Ake Patolo, Tonga National Emergency Management Oce
Edmund Penning-Rowsell, Middlesex University
Laura Elizabeth Peters, Oregon State University
Ingrid Rabe, World Health Organization
Christian Resch, Disaster Competence Network Austria
Olivier Ronveaux, World Health Organization
Cathy Roth, DFID
Linda Rowan, UNAVCO
Rita Der Sarkissian, Lebanon National Council for Scientic Research
Michael Schwenk, In den Kreuzäckern 16/1; IUPAC
Jane Sexton, Geoscience Australia
Jana Sillmann, CICERO Center for International Climate Research
Devendra Narain Singh, Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay
Anthony Solomon, World Health Organization
Christoph Steffen, World Health Organization
Val Swail, Emeritus Scientist, Environment and Climate Change Canada
Kuniyoshi Takeuchi, University of Yamanashi
Graham Tallis, World Health Organization
Norbert Tchouaffé, University of Dschang, Cameroon
Alan Thomson, British Geological Survey
Richard Thornton, Bushre and Natural Hazards CRC
Martin Le Tissier, University College Cork
Andrea Vacca, University of Cagliari
Daniel Vallero, Duke Civil and Environmental Engineering
Raman Velayudhan, World Health Organization
Martin Visbeck, GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel
Emilia Wahlstrom, UN Environment Programme
Susan Wang, World Health Organization
Abel Wilson Walekhwa, Africa Youth Advisory Board for Disaster Risk Reduction
Soichiro Yasukawa, UNESCO Disaster Risk Reduction
Wenqing Zhang, World Health Organization
ANNEX | 51
Review of the technical report
Anne Bardsley, University of Auckland, Center for Informed Futures, New Zealand
Melody Brown Burkins, Dartmouth, United States
Andrew Hancock, Chair, UN Expert Group on International Statistical Classications
Willi Harz, Federal Statistical Oce of Germany
Alik Ismail-Zadeh, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Germany
David Johnston, Massey University, New Zealand
Coleen Vogel, University of Witwatersrand, South Africa
UNDRR Asia Pacic Science Technology and Academia Advisory Group
Thanks to Advisory Group
Over 400 colleagues volunteered to join the UNDRR/ISC Sendai Hazard Denition and Classication
Review Advisory Group and have been very engaged, committed and supportive of the work – we
thank them for their support.
52 | ANNEX
ANNEX 2
Pre-dened hazards in the Sendai Framework Monitor
1 Animal incidents
2 Ash fall
3 Avalanche
4 Aviation accident
5 Blizzard
6 Chemical spill
7 Coastal erosion
8 Coastal ood
9 Cold wave
10 Convective storm
11 Cyclone surge
12 Cyclonic rain
13 Cyclonic wind
14 Debris ow
15 Derecho
16 Drought
17 Dust
18 Earthquake
19 Epidemics
20 Epizootics
21 Eruption
22 Explosion
23 Extra-tropical storm
24 Extreme temperature
25 Fire
26 Flash ood
27 Flood
28 Fog
29 Freeze
30 Frost
31 Glacial lake outburst
32 Hail
33 Heat wave
34 Ice
35 Impact
36 Industrial disaster
37 Insect infestation
38 Lahar
39 Landslide
40 Lava ow
41 Lightning
42 Mine disaster
43 Mud ow
44 Navigation accident
45 Nuclear incident
46 Oil spill
47 Pandemics
48 Pest
49 Plague
50 Pollution
51 Ponding ood
52 Power outage
53 Pyroclastic ow
54 Radiation contamination
55 Rail accident
56 Rain
57 Riverine ood
58 Road accident
59 Rock fall
60 Sand
61 Shoreline change
62 Snow
63 Space accident
64 Space weather
65 Structural collapse
66 Subsidence
67 Tornado
68 Tropical cyclone
69 Tsunami
70 Urban ood
71 Volcanic activity
72 Wave action
73 Wildre
74 Wind
ANNEX | 53
ANNEX 3
Denitions adopted by the UN General Assembly (UNGA)
Report of the Open-ended Intergovernmental Expert Working Group on indicators and terminology
relating to disaster risk reduction. Denitions of ‘hazard’, ‘disaster’, ‘exposure’ and ‘vulnerability’.
‘capacity’.
HAZARD
A process, phenomenon or human activity that may cause loss of life, injury or other health impacts,
property damage, social and economic disruption or environmental degradation.
Annotations:Hazards may be natural, anthropogenic or socionatural in origin. Naturalhazards are
predominantly associated with natural processes and phenomena. Anthropogenichazards, or human-
induced hazards, are induced entirely or predominantly by human activities and choices. This term
does not include the occurrence or risk of armed conicts and other situations of social instability or
tension which are subject to international humanitarian law and national legislation. Several hazards
are socionatural, in that they are associated with a combination of natural and anthropogenic factors,
including environmental degradation and climate change.
Hazards may be single, sequential or combined in their origin and effects. Each hazard is characterized
by its location, intensity or magnitude, frequency and probability. Biological hazards are also dened
by their infectiousness or toxicity, or other characteristics of the pathogen such as dose-response,
incubation period, case fatality rate and estimation of the pathogen for transmission.
Multi-hazard means (1) the selection of multiple major hazards that the country faces, and (2) the
specic contexts where hazardous events may occur simultaneously, cascadingly or cumulatively
over time, and taking into account the potential interrelated effects.
Hazards include (as mentioned in the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030,
and listed in alphabetical order) biological, environmental, geological, hydrometeorological and
technological processes and phenomena.
Biological hazards are of organic origin or conveyed by biological vectors, including pathogenic
microorganisms, toxins and bioactive substances. Examples are bacteria, viruses or parasites, as
well as venomous wildlife and insects, poisonous plants and mosquitoes carrying disease-causing
agents.
Environmentalhazards may include chemical, natural and biological hazards. They can be created by
environmental degradation or physical or chemical pollution in the air, water and soil. However, many
of the processes and phenomena that fall into this category may be termed drivers of hazard and
risk rather than hazards in themselves, such as soil degradation, deforestation, loss of biodiversity,
salinization and sea-level rise.
Geologicalorgeophysicalhazards originate from internal earth processes. Examples are earthquakes,
volcanic activity and emissions, and related geophysical processes such as mass movements,
landslides, rockslides, surface collapses and debris or mud ows. Hydrometeorological factors are
important contributors to some of these processes. Tsunamis are dicult to categorize: although
they are triggered by undersea earthquakes and other geological events, they essentially become an
oceanic process that is manifested as a coastal water-related hazard.
54 | ANNEX
Hydrometeorologicalhazardsare of atmospheric, hydrological or oceanographic origin. Examples are
tropical cyclones (also known as typhoons and hurricanes); oods, including ash oods; drought;
heatwaves and cold spells; and coastal storm surges. Hydrometeorological conditions may also be
a factor in other hazards such as landslides, wildland res, locust plagues, epidemics and in the
transport and dispersal of toxic substances and volcanic eruption material.
Technologicalhazardsoriginate from technological or industrial conditions, dangerous procedures,
infrastructure failures or specic human activities. Examples include industrial pollution, nuclear
radiation, toxic wastes, dam failures, transport accidents, factory explosions, res and chemical
spills. Technological hazards also may arise directly as a result of the impacts of a natural hazard
event.
DISASTER
A serious disruption of the functioning of a community or a society at any scale due to hazardous
events interacting with conditions of exposure, vulnerability and capacity, leading to one or more of
the following: human, material, economic and environmental losses and impacts.
Annotations:The effect of the disaster can be immediate and localized but is often widespread and
could last for a long period of time. The effect may test or exceed the capacity of a community or
society to cope using its own resources, and therefore may require assistance from external sources,
which could include neighbouring jurisdictions, or those at the national or international levels.
Emergencyis sometimes used interchangeably with the term disaster, as, for example, in the context
of biological and technological hazards or health emergencies, which, however, can also relate to
hazardous events that do not result in the serious disruption of the functioning of a community or
society.
Disaster damage occurs during and immediately after the disaster. This is usually measured in
physical units (e.g., square meters of housing, kilometres of roads, etc.), and describes the total or
partial destruction of physical assets, the disruption of basic services and damages to sources of
livelihood in the affected area.
Disasterimpactis the total effect, including negative effects (e.g., economic losses) and positive
effects (e.g., economic gains), of a hazardous event or a disaster. The term includes economic, human
and environmental impacts, and may include death, injuries, disease and other negative effects on
human physical, mental and social well-being.
For the purpose of the scope of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 (para.
15), the following terms are also considered:
Small-scale disaster: a type of disaster only affecting local communities which require assistance
beyond the affected community.
Large-scale disaster: a type of disaster affecting a society which requires national or international
assistance.
Frequent and infrequent disasters: depend on the probability of occurrence and the return period
of a given hazard and its impacts. The impact of frequent disasters could be cumulative, or
become chronic for a community or a society.
A slow-onset disaster is dened as one that emerges gradually over time. Slow-onset disasters
could be associated with, e.g., drought, desertication, sea-level rise, epidemic disease.
A sudden-onset disaster is one triggered by a hazardous event that emerges quickly or unexpectedly.
Sudden-onset disasters could be associated with, e.g., earthquake, volcanic eruption, ash ood,
chemical explosion, critical infrastructure failure, transport accident.
ANNEX | 55
EXPOSURE
The situation of people, infrastructure, housing, production capacities and other tangible human
assets located in hazard-prone areas.
Annotation: Measures of exposure can include the number of people or types of assets in an area.
These can be combined with the specic vulnerability and capacity of the exposed elements to any
particular hazard to estimate the quantitative risks associated with that hazard in the area of interest.
VULNERABILITY
The conditions determined by physical, social, economic and environmental factors or processes
which increase the susceptibility of an individual, a community, assets or systems to the impacts of
hazards.
Annotation: For positive factors which increase the ability of people to cope with hazards, see also
the denitions of “Capacity” and “Coping capacity”.
CAPACITY
The combination of all the strengths, attributes and resources available within an organization,
community or society to manage and reduce disaster risks and strengthen resilience.
Annotation: Capacity may include infrastructure, institutions, human knowledge and skills, and
collective attributes such as social relationships, leadership and management.
Coping capacity is the ability of people, organizations and systems, using available skills and
resources, to manage adverse conditions, risk or disasters. The capacity to cope requires continuing
awareness, resources and good management, both in normal times as well as during disasters or
adverse conditions. Coping capacities contribute to the reduction of disaster risks.
Capacity assessment is the process by which the capacity of a group, organization or society
is reviewed against desired goals, where existing capacities are identied for maintenance or
strengthening and capacity gaps are identied for further action.
Capacity development is the process by which people, organizations and society systematically
stimulate and develop their capacities over time to achieve social and economic goals. It is a concept
that extends the term of capacity-building to encompass all aspects of creating and sustaining
capacity growth over time. It involves learning and various types of training, but also continuous
efforts to develop institutions, political awareness, nancial resources, technology systems and the
wider enabling environment.
56 | ANNEX
ANNEX 4
Scientic glossaries
Prepared by Lidia Mayner and Virginia Murray (June 2019) updated November 2019. Results from
Prevention website when asking for glossary; subdivided into categories namely by theme and hazard.
www.preventionweb.net/search/pw#query=hazard+glossary&hits=20&sortby=default&view=pw
Hazardcategory Numberofhits
GlossariesbyTheme
Disaster risk management 623
Climate change 391
Governance 292
Water 206
GlossariesbyHazard
Flood 226
Earthquake 180
Drought 143
Tsunami 141
Cyclone 107
Stormsurge 46
Landslide 33
Wildre 32
Volcano 31
Heat wave 17
Epidemic Pandemic 14
Avalanche 10
Technicaldisaster 9
Coldwave 5
Insectinfestation 5
Tornado 3
NBC(Nuclear,biological,chemical) 3
ANNEX | 57
List 1 Compiled from pdf files by Virginia Murray and Lidia Mayner and websites accessed in June 2019
Glossaryname
Author
Year URL/Topicscovered
Climate change IPCC 2012 Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance
Climate Change Adaptation
www.ipcc.ch/report/managing-the-risks-of-extreme-events-and-
disasters-to-advance-climate-change-adaptation/
Climate change glossary BBC www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-11833685
Climate change guide www.climate-change-guide.com/climate-change-glossary.html
See site for extensive list of hazards
Droughts and Floods, Dust Storms, Heat Waves, Hurricanes, Malaria,
Dengue Fever, salmonella and other diseases/viruses, Tornadoes,
Tropical Storms, Wildres, Desertication, Ocean Acidication,
Melting of Glaciers, Melting of Polar Ice Caps, Rising Sea Levels,
Shortages of food and water, Shrinking Lakes, Extinction of species,
Wars over natural resources
US Global Change Research Program www.globalchange.gov/climate-change/glossary
A taxonomy of threats for complex risk
management
Cambridge Centre for Risk Studies, University of
Cambridge Judge Business School
2014 www.jbs.cam.ac.uk/leadmin/user_upload/research/centres/
risk/downloads/crs-cambridge-taxonomy-threats-complex-risk-
management.pdf
Cambridge Risk Framework - Developments and
Objectives Simon Rue
2015 www.jbs.cam.ac.uk/leadmin/user_upload/research/centres/risk/
downloads/showcase_presentation_rue.pdf
Cambridge risk framework API & dashboard
technology Simon Rue
2017 www.cbr.cam.ac.uk/leadmin/user_upload/research/centres/risk/
downloads/170622-slides-rue.pdf
Tsunami Disaster Risk – Past Impacts and
Projections CRED +UNISDR
2016 www.preventionweb.net/les/50825_credtsunami08.pdf
Tsunami Glossary
IOC; ITIC; UNESCO
2016
2019
www.preventionweb.net/publications/view/60890
PDF: itic.ioc-unesco.org/images/stories/about_tsunamis/tsunami_
glossary/309_16_Tsunami%20Glossary%20E_errata_20160907.pdf
International Glossary of Hydrology 2012 WMO-No 385 library.wmo.int/pmb_ged/wmo_385-2012.pdf
International Meteorological Vocabulary, WMO-
No. 182.
1992 https://library.wmo.int/doc_num.php?explnum_id=4712
International Cloud Atlas 2017 https://cloudatlas.wmo.int/
Glossary of Terms | Civil Aviation Safety Authority
Air Safety Support International (ASSI)
2018 www.airsafety.aero/About-ASSI/Glossary.aspx
Aviation abbreviations and acronyms
Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA)
www.casa.gov.au/about-us/site-information/aviation-abbreviations-
and-acronyms
Glossary of civil aviation and air travel
terminology
Airodyssey.net
airodyssey.net/reference/glossary/
FM 10-67-2 Glossary 2008 PDF le Glossary of air safety
Report: Technical Glossary of a Multi Hazard
Related Vulnerability and Risk Assessment
Language – Final version
ARMONIA and Philipp Schmidt-Thomé, Johannes
Klein, Raili Aumo, Jani Hurstinen
2007 Report: Technical Glossary of a Multi Hazard Related ...forum.
eionet.europa.eu/eionet-air-climate/library/public/2010_
citiesproject..
Geonet www.geonet.org.nz/
Earthquakes www.geonet.org.nz/earthquake/glossary
Landslide www.geonet.org.nz/landslide/glossary
Tsunami www.geonet.org.nz/tsunami/glossary
Volcano www.geonet.org.nz/volcano/glossary
Multi lingual landslide glossary
International Geotechnical Societies’ / UNESCO
1993 www.cgs.ca/pdf/heritage/Landslide%20Glossary.pdf
58 | ANNEX
Forces of Nature
Environmental Hazards
See Web site for individual hazards listed
National Geographic
www.nationalgeographic.org/interactive/forces-nature/
www.nationalgeographic.org/topics/resource-library-environmental-
hazards/?q=&page=1&per_page=25
Drought, Natural disasters and Climate Change, Oil and Bird
population + marine wildlife, Earthquakes, Floods, Extreme
weather, Hurricanes, wild res, oil platform explosion, nuclear plant
meltdowns, Tsunami, storm surges
Glossary
Watson, D, Adams, M.
2012 onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/9781118259870.gloss
Design for Resilience to Flooding and Climate Change
Glossary of Terms – American Avalanche
Institute
Avalanches- Forces of Nature
Avalanche Terms
National Geographic Education Resource library www.cgs.ca/pdf/heritage/Landslide%20Glossary.pdf
List includes avalanches, extreme natural events, hazard pyroclastic
ows, human and environmental impacts of volcanic ash
US Geological Survey (USGS) Earthquake
Glossary
earthquake.usgs.gov/learn/glossary/
Physical Science Glossary silvergrovescience.angelre.com/OnlineIntegratedScience/
PhysicalScienceGlossary.htm
CDEMA Earthquake Readiness www.weready.org/earthquake/index.php?option=com_
glossary&Itemid=66
SMS Tsunami Warning + Earthquakes www.sms-tsunami-warning.com/pages/earthquake-glossary#.
XRLQnnduI-I
Washington State Earthquake Hazards
Linda Noson, et al.
Glossary of Key terms Ch 11 Earthquakes
Glossary of Earthquake and Related Terminology
USGS
UUSS – earthquakes
University of Utah Seismograph Station
quake.utah.edu/regional-info/earthquake-glossary
AUSTRALIAN EMERGENCY
MANAGEMENT TERMS THESAURUS
EMA
1998 doms.csu.edu.au/csu/le/78a6c5d7-fd8b-ff7e-fff3-2ffb78764ebe/1/
resources/manuals/Manual-04.pdf
EM Terms & Denitions
FEMA
training.fema.gov/hiedu/termdef.aspx
training.fema.gov/hiedu/docs/terms%20and%20denitions/
terms%20and%20denitions.pdf
Glossary of Emergency Management Terms
Blanchard, W
Guide to emergency management and related
terms, denitions, concepts, acronyms,
organizations, programs, guidance, executive
orders & legislation.
Blanchard, B. W
2008 training.fema.gov/EMIWeb/edu/docs/terms%20and%20denitions/
Terms%20and%20Denitions.pdf
Emergency Management acronyms and
abbreviations
www.allacronyms.com/emergency_management/abbreviations
Emergency Management Glossary and acronyms
Larson
Penultimate Glossary of Emergency Management
Terms
Simeon Institute, Pacic Emergency
Management Center
2005 9th Ed 2017 - Book
Emergency Planning – Glossary of Terms
Principles of emergency planning and
management
David Alexander
2002 9th Ed 2017 - Book
Glossary of Emergency Preparedness Terms
City of Chicago
www.chicago.gov/city/en/depts/oem/supp_info/alertrespond/
glossary.html
Australian Disaster Resilience Glossary
Australian Institute for Disaster Resilience
/knowledge.aidr.org.au/
glossary/?wordOfTheDayId=&keywords=&alpha=&page=1&results
=50&order=AZ
Indicators for Disaster Risk Management 2005 www.preventionweb.net/les/1082_1056indicatorsofdranddm.pdf
ANNEX | 59
Terms and denitions suggested in ISO/IEC CD
Guide 73 (under development 2008)
2008
ISO Guide 73: 2009 - Risk management –
Vocabulary
2016 www.iso.org/standard/44651.html Preview: www.iso.org/obp/
ui/#iso:std:iso:guide:73:ed-1:v1:en
Glossary of civil protection for EU citizens
SIPROCI
Glossary of Terms
EUR-Lex
eur-lex.europa.eu/summary/glossary/democratic_decit.
html?locale=en
Components of Risk – A comparative Glossary
K. Thywissen
2006
2013
Book: Measuring Vulnerability to Natural Hazards ed J. Birkman,
2nd ed 2013
Ch 23, Marre K. (nee Thywissen) p569-618
Disaster Dictionary
Biby, DJ
2005 The denitive guide to related terms, acronyms, and concepts for
emergency planning and operations, K & M Publishers Inc., Tulsa
Oklahoma, USA
Dictionary of Disaster Medicine and
Humanitarian Relief
Gunn, SWA
2013
The Dictionary of Homeland Security and Defense
O’Leary, M.
2006
Health Disaster Management: Guidelines for
Evaluation and Research in the Utstein Style
Sundnes, KO; Birnbaum, ML
2003 Prehospital and Disaster Medicine, Vol. 17, supplement 3, pp:144-
161
Glossary of terms – Pandemic u
SMC
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) www.cdc.gov/u/about/glossary.htm
Glossary of Terms and Acronyms www.health.gov.au/internet/publications/publishing.nsf/Content/
uborderplan-toc~glossary-of-terms-and-acronyms
National Pandemic Inuenza Airport Border Operations Plan.
CSRC //csrc.nist.gov/glossary/term/Pandemic-Inuenza
UNISDR 2016 Report of the open-ended intergovernmental expert working group
on indicators and terminology relating to disaster risk reduction
ISDR 2008
2004
Terminology: Basic terms of disaster risk reduction
UNISDR 2017 Terminology on disaster risk reduction
Disaster Lexicon 2008
Community Glossary www.st.nmfs.noaa.gov/st5/publication/communities/Glossary_
Communities.pdf
Mercury Disposal
Ochoa, G S
2011 Glossary of terms relevant to discussion of mercury storage and
disposal
Peril Classication and Hazard Glossary
IRDR
2014
Sphere Glossary 2019 spherestandards.org/wp-content/uploads/Sphere-Glossary-2018.
pdf
Radiation Glossary
Health Physics Society
www.radiationanswers.org/radiation-resources/glossary.html
Glossary of Terms
Nuclear Accident Independent Investigation
Commission
Full-Text Glossary
US Nuclear Regulatory Commission
2017 ww.nrc.gov/reading-rm/basic-ref/glossary/full-text.html
Glossaries related to Business and Technology
(4)
www.techtarget.com/search/query?q=glossary
DRI International Glossary for Resilience
DRI
2018
Disaster Management Center
NIH and NLM
disasterinfo.nlm.nih.gov/
60 | ANNEX
List 2 Compiled by Lidia Mayner in 2014. Disaster related glossaries from the Disaster Information
Management Research Center (DIMRC), National Library of Medicine; Bethesda, MD.
Ref # Source Electronic
copy
Listing
2012 2014
1: Chemicals and Toxic Substances
1A Chemical/Biological/Radiological Incident Handbook. Section G. Glossary of
Chemical Terms. Central Intelligence Agency. www.cia.gov/library/reports/general-
reports-1/cbr_handbook/cbrbook.htm#8 accessed 28_01_2014
Yes x x
1B Glossary of Terms. Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, Centers
for Disease Control and Prevention. /www.atsdr.cdc.gov/glossary.html accessed
28_01_2014
Yes x x
1A_
OLD
From 2009 DIMRC listing.
www.ilo.org/legacy/english/protection/safework/cis/products/safetytm/glossary.
htm
Yes NO NO
2: Climate and Weather
2A National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Weather Service
Glossary
w1.weather.gov/glossary/ accessed 28_01_2014
Glossary not downloaded as each letter must be downloaded separately.
NO x x
3: Disaster and Emergency Management
3A Accommodating Individuals with Disabilities in the Provision of Disaster Mass
Care, Housing and Human Services. VII. Glossary of Terms. Federal Emergency
Management Authority.
www.fema.gov/vii-glossary-terms accessed 28_01_2014
Yes x x
3B Acronyms and Glossary of Terms. National Capital Region Homeland Security
Program
www.ncrhomelandsecurity.org/ncr/glossary.asp accessed 28_01_2014
Yes x x
3C CEDIM (Centre for Disease Management and Risk Reduction Technology)
– Glossary. Terms and Denitions of Risk Sciences. Karlsruhe Institute of
Technology
www.cedim.de/download/glossar-gesamt-20050624.pdf accessed 28_01_2014
Yes x x
3D Online Disaster Dictionary. Suburban Emergency Management Project. Only SEMP
home page is printed. Typed in web address on printed page, but it brought up an
unrelated site.
NOTE: Dictionary is in older listing, not 2014 one. As online Disaster Dictionary (as
per 2012 listing) could not be located electronically denitions must be taken from
Simon’s Excel le.
A Google search brought up link to a different dictionary by same author which
was saved as Reference 51.
U.S. Department of Homeland Security (2012) DHS (Department of Homeland
Security) Risk Lexicon. Available at www.dhs.gov/dhs-risk-lexicon
Glossary Web site www.dhs.gov/xlibrary/assets/dhs-risk-lexicon-2010.pdf
Accessed 18/ 11/ 2014
No
YES
XNO
YES
3E Emergency Response Safety and Health Database Glossary. National Institute for
Occupational safety and Health, Centers for disease Control and Prevention
www.cdc.gov/NIOSH/ershdb/glossary.html accessed 28_01_2014
Yes x x
3F Glossary and Acronyms of Emergency Management Terms
Oce of Emergency Management, Department of Energy
orise.orau.gov/emi/training-products/les/glossary-emt.pdf accessed 30_01_2014
Yes x x
3G Institute for Crisis, Disaster, and Risk Management (ICDRM) Emergency
Management Glossary of Terms, George Washington University. Link from NLM list
brings u