Environment & Biodiversity

SUMups To Address Global Natural Disasters

SUMups are a hypothetical grouping of complementary start-ups from around the world that work on some aspect of natural disaster management. These start-ups’ innovative technologies and how they can be combined to create more effective disaster management solutions are highlighted.

Background: Natural Disasters’

  • Increasing Frequency and Impact Natural Disasters are becoming more frequent and severe around the world. Natural disasters are becoming more common around the world, and the severity of their effects is increasing.
  • According to the FAO, there were 360 natural disasters per year in the 2010s that resulted in at least 10 deaths, affected 100 or more people, caused homelessness or injury, and necessitated the declaration of a state of national emergency and an appeal for international assistance.
  • Natural Disaster Comparison: This figure is significantly higher than the 100 recorded events in the 1980s and the 90 recorded events in the 1970s.
  • Disasters Caused by Climate, Weather, and Hydrology: Furthermore, with the exception of Covid-19, climate, weather, and hydrology-related disasters are becoming more common, whereas geophysical and biological emergencies are not.
  • Natural disasters have a global impact, affecting countries all over the world in a variety of ways, including forest fires, heat and dust storms, and floods.
  • The Importance of Improving Disaster Response and Mitigation Efforts: As a society, we must recognise that natural disasters will continue to pose a threat, and we must improve our ability to respond to and mitigate their effects.
  • Natural Disasters: Fortunately, there are steps being taken to address this issue, such as research into improving disaster response systems and the development of new technologies to aid in disaster preparedness and relief efforts.

Disaster Prevention Technologies

  • The disaster prevention technologies developed by start-up
  • CERD-AR: CERD-AR created an Augmented Reality (AR) application that gamifies disaster animations and provides disaster prevention drills in ultra-realistic settings to prepare people for evacuation and response.
  • A startup based in Palo Alto One Concern: To predict natural disasters, One Concern created a digital twin of the world by analysing satellite images. The platform combines Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning (AI/ML), and supercomputers to create seismic and flood technology for real-time flooding prediction and risk assessment.

Technologies for Emergency Response and Reconstruction

  • Garuda Aerospace: Garuda Aerospace deployed drones in Turkey to identify trapped victims in earthquake-affected areas.
  • HW Design Labs: Through deep penetrating ground sensing radars, wireless connectivity solutions, advanced tracking, and navigation services, HW Design Labs has developed IoT innovations that assist disaster response teams in effectively planning their operations.

Technologies for Emergency Communication

  • MyResQR: This startup facilitates communication between victims and stakeholders in an emergency. The smart QR code manages information and alerts first responders such as ambulance services, hospital staff, and other emergency response teams during emergencies.

Way Forward

  • The SUMups represent an opportunity to combine innovative disaster management technologies from start-ups around the world to address global SDGs such as resilient infrastructure and zero hunger.

@the end

The G20 Startup20 Engagement Group can help many such SUMups in the future to deal with the increasing frequency, intensity, and complexity of natural disasters. Sharing ideas and working together on a global scale can help us all become better prepared and equipped to deal with these events. The article emphasises that sharing ideas can be a powerful tool for solving complex problems, and the creation of SUMups is a step in the right direction for improving disaster management globally.

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