Sharing the details, Sandeep Poundrik, director-general of CDRI said, “Prime Minister Narendra Modi, UK PM Boris Johnson apart from heads of Italy and Fiji will be the inaugural speakers in the latest edition of Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI).”
Telecom, energy and transport are key sectors that CDRI is focusing on in the first few years, and health infrastructure has also become important. CDRI is a multistakeholder partnership, whose secretariat is based out of New Delhi, and its members include 22 countries, two private sector organisations and multilateral bodies as members.
Study on disaster impact
In India, CDRI is studying Odisha’s power sector resilience in the aftermath of Cyclone Fani. CDRI also plans to do macro level study on whether standards for building infrastructure need to be modified especially in coastal areas, as a part of an overall study on cyclone Fani and its impact on Odisha.
“For instance, were towers made for such high wind speeds and do standards need to be modified,” said Poundrik responding to a BusinessLine query.
A drop in lives lost in the 2019 cyclone Fani (less than 100 lives were lost) against over 10,000 lives lost in the 1999 super-cyclone of Odisha shows that the Government of India and State government were able to bring down loss of lives. But, on the infrastructure side, losses mounted. The loss in the power sector alone in the state was $1 billion, said Poundrik.
“After disaster, how do we build a system in a way that losses are reduced,” added Poundrik. CDRI also plans to do similar surveys and studies for airports globally. Also, it is in talks with Centre and States to do resilience studies for National and State Highways in India, said Poundrik.