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The Parching of China> Backgrounder
UPDATED: May 17, 2009 NO. 20 MAY 21, 2009
China's Actions for Disaster Prevention and Reduction




In recent years, natural disasters happened frequently around the world and have caused enormous losses of life and property to human society. They pose a common challenge to all the countries in the world.

China suffers the most natural disasters of all countries. Along with global climate changes and its own economic takeoff and progress in urbanization, China suffers increasing pressure on resources, environment and ecology. The situation in the prevention of and response to natural disasters has become more serious and complicated.

Always placing people first, the Chinese Government has all along put the security of people's lives and property on the top of its work, and has listed the disaster prevention and reduction in its economic and social development plan as an important guarantee of sustainable development. In recent years, China has been comprehensively implementing the Scientific Outlook on Development, further strengthened legislation as well as the building of systems and mechanisms on disaster prevention and reduction, committed to building on disaster-prevention capacities, encouraged public contribution, and actively participated in international cooperation in this respect.

The devastating Wenchuan earthquake, which occurred on May 12, 2008, caused massive human casualties and property losses, and caused immeasurable sufferings to the Chinese people. In the wake of the disaster, the Chinese Government decided to make May 12 "Disaster Prevention and Reduction Day," starting in 2009. This document has been written to mark the one year anniversary of the Wenchuan earthquake and greet China's first "Disaster Prevention and Reduction Day," with a review of the endeavors the Chinese Government and people have made in disaster prevention and reduction.

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