Due to the complex mountainous terrain and harsh climate, the South Caucasus region has been long vulnerable to various natural hazards. This is further compounded by inadequate human capacities and knowledge, as well as a lack of technical and financial resources. Due to natural conditions and shortcomings in human response, these challenges will be further exacerbated by the impact of climate change, leading to changes in the water cycle (floods and droughts), soil degradation, and negative impacts on economic assets and infrastructure, resulting in further deterioration of livelihoods of people in critically affected areas.
The project aims to reduce population’s vulnerabilities towards hazards caused by climate change and to foster regional cooperation and advocacy on critical issues for the Caucasus region, like climate change, biodiversity, forest resources, water, land use, natural hazards and spatial data infrastructure.
UNDP and its governmental partners in Georgia are working to establish and institutionalize a national multi-hazard early warning system. The system will provide a comprehensive hazard, risk and vulnerability assessment, together with climate information, mapping methods and technologies. In addition, multi-hazard response and preparedness plans for Tbilisi, and for 10 most vulnerable municipalities will be elaborated.
The second component aims at the establishment of a regional scientific and civil society community of practice.
The project also encourages universities and academic institutions to develop applied research and facilitates the establishment of a science-policy hub in the region.
The project strengthens capacities for teaching and learning at universities.
Expected results on Georgia country level:
- Standardized and institutionalized multi-hazard maps and risk profiles are expected to increase the risk resilience of 47% (i.e. 1.7 million people) of Georgia’s population.
- National-level multi-hazard risk maps and risk profiles are developed, standardised and ready for roll-out in Georgia supported by the adequate institutional and legal frameworks preliminarily put in place by the Government of Georgia.
- At least 50 representatives from the National Environmental Agency (NEA), Emergency Management Service (EMS) and partner universities’ undergraduate courses get trained in hazard mapping and risk profiling methodology in Georgia.
- 11 municipal level multi-hazard response and preparedness plans are prepared for Georgia’s major river basins with accompanying trainings for municipal employees.
Expected results on South Caucasus regional level:
- Development and implementation of a Caucasus Regional Research Agenda 2020-2030 on Mountain Development and Climate Change
- Distance learning Disaster Risk Management and hazard mapping modules are introduced at the partner universities in Baku, Yerevan and Tbilisi.
- Two Caucasus Mountain Forums get organized.
- Diverse education and scientific exchanges on natural hazards, climate change and sustainable mountain development (SMD) are implemented to support evidence-based research in the region.