Nov 5, 2019, 9:42 AM
Journalist ID: 1843
News Code: 83542850
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680m people at risk of tsunami – UN Chief

Tehran, Nov 5, IRNA – United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in his message on World Tsunami Awareness Day, 5 November 2019, warned that the risks of tsunami remain immense for an estimated 680 million people who live in low-lying coastal zones.

According to the (UNIC), the full text of his message reads: 

This year marks the 15th anniversary of the Indian Ocean Tsunami, when 230,000 lives were tragically lost in 14 countries.  Since then, we have seen a great improvement in early warning systems, not only for the Pacific Ocean but also for the Indian Ocean, the Caribbean, the North-East Atlantic, the Mediterranean, and others. As a result, many lives have been saved.

However, it is clear from the growing economic losses over the last twenty years that we have not yet fully learned the importance of disaster-proofing critical infrastructure. This is essential to avoid the disruption to important public services that can occur during tsunamis, earthquakes and extreme weather events.  

The risks remain immense. An estimated 680 million people live in low-lying coastal zones; by 2050, this number might surpass 1 billion. At the same time, rising sea levels caused by climate emergencies may further exacerbate the destructive power of tsunamis. 

Risk reduction will be crucial to our efforts to deliver the Sustainable Development Goals. On World Tsunami Awareness Day, I encourage governments, local authorities and the construction industry to pursue risk-informed development and invest in resilience. 

1424**

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