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PESHAWAR: The Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA) on Thursday released Rs641.764 million funds to district administrations across the province for effectively dealing with natural calamities.

In a statement issued here, the PDMA said it had released Rs42 million for Upper Kohistan, Rs40 million for Upper Dir, Rs40 million for Peshawar, and Rs30 million for Swabi, Shangla, DI Khan, Charsadda, Swat and Mardan each.

It added that Rs29 million was also given away for Chitral and Buner each, Rs27 million for Abbottabad, Rs20 million for Tank, Bannu, Malakand, Lower Kohistan and Lower Dir each, Rs15 million for Battagram, Kohat, Lakki Marwat and Hangu each, Rs16 million for Haripur, and Rs10 million for Karak and Torghar districts each.

PDMA to install 35 telemeters in province

PDMA director general Pervez Khan asked all relevant departments to take measures to prevent damage to public life and property in case of disaster.

He said the districts administrations should ensure the availability of emergency services, staff, machinery and other resources for quick response to any emergency.

TELEMETERS: Provincial Disaster Management Authority Director Mian Abdul Qadir Shah on Thursday said the authority was installing 35 telemeters across disaster-prone Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to have real-time data for effective response to floods.

He told an expo here that the telemeters would help collect accurate data about floods in the province.

“It is high time to invest in disaster risk reduction instead of post-disaster recovery. We are trying to tap all resources and are working hard to ensure the province’s disaster resilience,” he said.

The one-day event was organised by the Centre for Disaster Preparedness and Management, University of Peshawar, on campus.

A statement said around 30 governmental and nongovernmental organisations displayed their products, equipment and software at the expo on disaster reduction risk reduction.

The expo was sponsored by the multi-agency collaboration platform for building resilient communities.

The statement said the university was coordinating with other departments to come up with a strategy to cope with natural calamities in the region and climate change challenges.

Addressing the inaugural session of the expo titled ‘technology mediated disaster risk reduction, climate change adaptation and sustainable development’, UoP vice-chancellor Prof Mohammad Asif Khan said research on disaster reduction was a positive step.

He said the key government organisations would have to adopt the latest technologies to combat climate change and disaster-like situations.

The VC warned that the execution of large infrastructure projects without environmental feasibility and building codes would bring about catastrophes.

Centre director Dr Noor Jahan said disaster mitigation and preparedness needed more attention of the disaster management authorities.

She called for effective mechanism with the latest technology for emergency response and said the relevant departments should conduct awareness programmes and adopt the latest technologies.

Dean of the Faculty of Life and Environmental Sciences Dr Bashir Ahmad said bringing the development sector, governmental institutions and academia under one roof was a big achievement for the centre.

He asked participants to sustain research and collaborations.

Dr Bashir said technology and research related to disaster risk reduction and climate change had progressed significantly on all fronts and across all sectors.

He said scientists and researchers had got a deeper understanding of hazards, vulnerabilities, disaster risks and their linkages to the developmental processes.

The dean, however, said there were challenges and gaps for translating that scientific information into a policy for disaster risk reduction.

Project investigator Mushtaq Jan said the CDPM was established to strengthen collaborations between institutions and organisations working for disaster risk reduction.

He said the project’s team had developed mobile apps for disaster reporting and information sharing.

Mr Mushtaq said the team was developing software for economic cost modeling, vulnerable groups’ dependency modeling, system dynamics, disaster cascade effect modeling, and software for the visualisation of disaster impacts.

Published in Dawn, April 26th, 2019