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Launch of the Global Assessment Special Report on Drought 2021

Jun 17
June 17, 2021
9:00 am - 10:00 am
Dry landscape, with brush growing out of dry soil

Droughts have deep, widespread, and underestimated impacts on societies, ecosystems, and economies. They incur costs that are borne disproportionately by the most vulnerable people. The extensive impacts of drought are consistently underreported even though they span large areas, cascade through systems and scales, and linger through time, affecting millions of people and contributing to food insecurity, poverty, and inequality. Climate change is increasing temperatures and disrupting rainfall patterns, increasing the frequency, severity, and duration of droughts in many regions across the globe. As we move towards a 2˚C warmer world, urgent action is required to better understand and more effectively manage drought risk to reduce the devastating toll on human lives and livelihoods, and ecosystems.

The Global Assessment Special Report on Drought explores the systemic nature of drought and its impacts on achievement of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction and the Sustainable Development Goals.

The Special Report on Drought 2021 will be launched on June 17, 2021, the World Day for Combating Desertification and Drought, in conjunction with the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification.


  • Moderator: Loretta Hieber Girardet, Chief of the Risk Knowledge Branch, UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction
  • Opening Remarks: Mami Mizutori, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction
  • Opening Remarks: Ibrahim Thiaw, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification
  • Keynote Speaker: Dr. Jane Lubchenco, Deputy Director for Climate and Environment, White House Office of Science and Technology Policy.
  • Video Message: Stephen Quest, Director General, Joint Research Centre, European Commission
  • Presentation of the Key Findings of the Report: Dr. Roger Pulwarty, Senior Scientist, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
  • Presentation of Case Study: Advancing Drought Risk Management in the Caribbean: A Multi-Sectoral Perspective: Adrian Trotman, Chief of Applied Meteorology and Climatology (AMC) at the Caribbean Institute for Meteorology and Hydrology
  • Presentation of Case Study: East Africa - The IGAD Case: Mr. Gerald Kairu, Regional Project Manager, the Global Water Partnership