Inter-American Committee

          In 1999, the OAS General Assembly passed Resolution 1682 (XXIX-O/99), which establishes the Inter-American Committee on Natural Disaster Reduction (IACNDR). The Committee is chaired by the Secretary-General of the OAS, and is comprised of the President of the OAS Permanent Council, the Assistant Secretary-General of the OAS, the President of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), the Director General of the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO), the Secretary-General of the Pan-American Institute of Geography and History (PAIGH), the President of the Pan American Development Foundation (PADF), the Director General of the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA), the Director General of the Inter-American Agency for Cooperation and Development (IACD), the Chair of the Inter-American Defense Board (IADB), and the Executive Secretary of the Inter-American Commission of Women (CIM). The OAS Secretary-General invites the member states, permanent observers, and representatives of national, sub regional, regional, and international organizations, as he deems appropriate.

      The purpose of the IACNDR is to act as the principal forum of the Inter-American System for analyzing issues related to natural and other disasters, including the prevention and mitigation of their effects, in coordination with the governments of member states; competent national, regional, and international organizations; and non-governmental organizations. It seeks to strengthen hemispheric actions to achieve maximum international cooperation in support of national and/or regional efforts for timely prevention, preparedness, early warning, response, vulnerability reduction, emergency care, mitigation, rehabilitation, and reconstruction. Furthermore, the IACNDR is responsible for coordinating the implementation and updating of the Inter-American Strategic Plan for Policy on Vulnerability Reduction, Risk Management and Disaster Response (IASP). The IASP, concurrently, is implemented by the joint efforts of national competent agencies, regional inter-governmental organizations responsible for disaster mitigation, the GS/OAS and other relevant organizations of the Inter-American System, according to their field of expertise and competence.

      The IASP seeks to: (i) reduce the loss of human life and property; (ii) improve emergency preparedness and response; (iii) improve financial protection from catastrophic loss; and (iv) make economic and social infrastructure more resilient for sustainable development and hemispheric security.

      RISK-MACC is guided by the IACNDR-IASP, while supporting the work of the OAS Committee on Hemispheric Security (CHS) – committee within the Permanent Council that meets regularly to consider suggestions from the IACNDR and to recommend natural hazard risk reduction policy to the General Assembly. The CHS reflects a strong recognition within the OAS that natural disasters present serious security issues for the entire region and that collaboration is needed to work on them. Thus, the RISK-MACC is able to effectively develop policy by collaborating with the IACNDR, the IASP and the CHS. The Permanent Council recommends policy to the General Assembly, which is considered by all member states and, if passed, is codified into resolutions.