Ecosystem Restoration for Mitigation of Natural Disasters: New publication

New publication: Ecosystem Restoration for Mitigation of Natural Disasters – Policy Brief

Degraded natural habitats increase the risk for natural disasters

Every year, natural disasters cause loss of lives and significant damage in the Nordic countries. Ecosystems in good condition have the ability to reduce the impacts of natural disasters. However, degradation of natural habitats has in many cases seriously damaged this ability. A recently concluded Nordic project ERMOND—Ecosystem Resilience for Mitigation of Natural Disasters—aimed to facilitate new thinking and new solutions in disaster risk management in the Nordic countries.

Restoring of degraded ecosystems is cheaper and more sustainable than traditional engineered solutions of disaster risk reduction

The main conclusion from the ERMOND project is that Nordic disaster risk reduction strategies should place restoration of degraded ecosystems on the agenda as an integrated part of future disaster risk reduction management. This may in the long run prove to be cheaper and more sustainable than traditional engineered solutions, such as building levees for preventing floods. Restoration of degraded ecosystem will furthermore provide a wide array of other environmental, economic and social benefits. The ERMOND project was launched in 2014 as a theme project of the Nordic Council of Ministers, appointed by the Icelandic Ministry for the Environment and Natural Resources. In total, fifteen institutions participated in the ERMOND project, and another four were part of a wider network receiving information on project activities. Project partners came from all the Nordic countries. The project was financed through the following funding schemes of the Nordic Council of Ministers: NordBio – The Program for the Icelandic Presidency in NCM in 2014 and the Terrestrial Ecosystem Group (TEG). The Committee of Senior Officials for the Environment funded the project NordEcRes, which was linked to the ERMOND project. The results of the ERMOND project will soon be published in a TemaNord report, an ANP Policy brief and several scientific articles.