Sunday, July 14, 2024

Are We Ready for This Monsoon?

When the monsoon comes, it can bring both good and bad things. Lately, however, monsoons have caused more problems than help because of climate change. While it cools down the heat and helps farmers, there are worries about how severe it will be. Experts say there will be more rain and higher temperatures than normal, making floods, landslides, and diseases worse. So, are we ready for it?

The Annual Cycle of Unpreparedness

Despite having many plans and policies for disaster preparedness, we always fall short in responding to natural disasters. Every year, different governments come and go, but the same pattern repeats: hundreds of lives are lost, and natural forces destroy many properties and infrastructure. The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Authority (NDRRMA) has created a good Monsoon Preparedness and Response Plan for this year, and they have stored emergency relief materials in all provinces. However, the real challenge is to put these plans into action effectively.

The Looming Threats and Numbers

An estimated 1.81 million individuals and 412,000 houses are under jeopardy during this monsoon, necessitating 18,000 rescues. These staggering numbers highlight the necessity for a comprehensive response to disasters. Effective coordination between federal, provincial, and local levels is crucial but often lacking. Local governments, as primary rescuers in floods and landslides, still fall short in human and financial resources, causing significant issues during disasters.

Additionally, a rise in water- and vector-borne illnesses like cholera, typhoid, and dengue occurs during the monsoon season. Dengue cases are already being reported across the country, and water resource contamination has led to a rise in water-borne disease cases in hospitals. Authorities must not overlook these epidemics during monsoon preparedness, focusing on timely healthcare interventions in disease-prone areas.

Ensuring Effective Disaster Preparedness

We need to do more than just plan for disasters; we must implement these plans effectively. This means training local governments and communities on how to respond to disasters and ensuring they have the resources they need. Regular drills and public awareness campaigns can make a big difference. Additionally, using early warning systems and real-time monitoring can help reduce the impact of natural disasters.

Long-Term Climate Change Mitigation

By addressing its underlying causes, we can effectively combat climate change. Nepal has to make infrastructural and sustainable practice investments to lessen its reliance on extreme weather. We can better prepare for upcoming monsoons by comprehending how weather patterns are impacted by climate change and human activity. This includes researching differences in temperature and rainfall, as well as how they affect agricultural and public health.

Post-disaster rehabilitation should be comprehensive, focusing on more than just rebuilding homes. Health ministries must prioritize controlling epidemics during the monsoon. This means sending healthcare workers to vulnerable areas, providing adequate medical supplies, and running awareness campaigns on hygiene and disease prevention.

In The End

The monsoon is a natural part of life in Nepal, bringing both challenges and opportunities. With proper preparedness, effective execution of plans, and coordinated efforts, we can mitigate the adverse impacts and protect our communities. 

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