HANDBOOK FOR ESTIMATING THE SOCIO-ECONOMIC AND ENVIRONMENTAL EFFECTS OF DISASTERS

AUTHOR: United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC)

LAST UPDATED: 2003

TYPE OF TOOL: Handbook

KEYWORDS: humanitarian action, environmental management, United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), handbook, restoration, shelter, fuel and energy, water, impact assessment

FORMAT: Downloadable PDF document, 111 pages

LANGUAGES: English, Spanish

WEB LINK:

http://www.cepal.org/default.asp?idioma=IN (ECLAC)

http://www.recoveryplatform.org/assets/tools_guidelines/Handbook_for_Estimating_Socioeconomic2003.pdf (handbook)

ABOUT THE TOOL: “This new version of the ECLAC Handbook describes the methods required to assess the social, economic and environmental effects of disasters, breaking them down into direct damages and indirect losses and into overall and macroeconomic effects.

The Handbook focuses on the conceptual and methodological aspects of measuring or estimating the damage caused by disasters to capital stocks and losses in the production flows of goods and services, as well as any temporary effects on the main macroeconomic variables. This new edition also contemplates both damage to and effects on living conditions, economic performance and the environment.

The Handbook describes a tool that enables one to identify and quantify disaster damages by means of a uniform and consistent methodology that has been tested and proven over three decades. It also provides the means to identify the most affected social, economic and environmental sectors and geographic regions, and therefore those that require priority attention in reconstruction. The degree of detail of damage and loss assessment that can be achieved by applying the Handbook will, however, depend on the availability of quantitative information in the country or region affected. The methodology presented here allows for the quantification of the damage caused by any kind of disaster, whether man-made or natural, whether slowly evolving or sudden. The application of the methodology also enables one to estimate whether there is sufficient domestic capacity for dealing with reconstruction tasks, or if international cooperation is required.”

ABOUT THE AUTHORS: “ECLAC, which is headquartered in Santiago, Chile, is one of the five regional commissions of the United Nations. It was founded with the purpose of contributing to the economic development of Latin America, coordinating actions directed towards this end, and reinforcing economic ties among countries and with other nations of the world. The promotion of the region’s social development was later included among its primary objectives.”

INTENDED USER: Countries and communities affected by disasters; organizations responsible for assessing the social, economic, and environmental effects of disasters.