OECD Reviews of Risk Management Policies

1993-4106 (online)
1993-4092 (print)
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This series presents a series of books examining the management of risk by governments in such areas as natural disasters, climate change, information security, nuclear energy, biotechnology and financial services.
OECD Reviews of Risk Management Policies: Mexico 2013

OECD Reviews of Risk Management Policies: Mexico 2013

Review of the Mexican National Civil Protection System You do not have access to this content

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11 June 2013
9789264192294 (PDF) ;9789264192195(print)

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This review of Mexico's civil protection system looks at the coordination of multiple actors across the central government, public and private industries, and state and local governments for the effective management of hurricanes, earthquakes and floods.

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  • Foreword and Acknowledgements

    Civil protection plays a key role in ensuring the safety and well-being of citizens and in building economic and social resilience to disasters. Good civil protection can literally make the difference between lives saved or lost, and in the time it takes for society and the economy to recover after major events. Mexico, a country exposed to frequent tropical storms, powerful earthquakes and devastating floods, has been a frontrunner in this area. The National Civil Protection System is a core public service which relies on a unique mix of institutional capacities and the co-ordination of resources at all levels of government.

  • Acronyms and abbreviations
  • Executive summary

    Over the past two and a half decades, Mexico’s National Civil Protection System (Sistema Nacional de Protección Civil, SINAPROC) has achieved significant improvements, notably in its planning, response and recovery capacities. Similar to many OECD countries, however, SINAPROC now senses the need to shift focus toward risk prevention. Its recent legislation promotes a forward-looking approach aimed at avoiding or reducing damages before they occur, and is consistent with placing climate change adaptation at the core of the country’s strategic vision for development. These improvements have enjoyed strong political support at the federal level and buy-in from most SINAPROC stakeholders, which should be continued to foster resilience and to keep pace with increasing economic and social vulnerabilities.

  • Key natural hazards and vulnerabilities

    Mexico is exposed to a wide range of hazardous natural phenomena. It is one of the areas in the world with the most frequent occurrence of both severe earthquakes and tropical storms. This chapter presents the key hazards to which the country is exposed in terms of earthquakes, tropical storms, floods and other natural hazards. It discusses societal and economic vulnerability to natural hazards throughout the country.

  • Legal and institutional framework for risk management

    Mexico’s National Civil Protection System relies upon a comprehensive legal and regulatory framework. This chapter will discuss key examples of the progress made, highlighting the major achievements that underpin operational and strategic strengths of the system today, while also identifying opportunities for improvement. It discusses the challenges of co-ordination across the three levels of government as well as the institutional frameworks at local level. Finally, it analyses the opportunities offered by the new 2012 General Law for Civil Protection, as well as its implications in terms of challenges for implementation.

  • Risk assessment in the National Civil Protection System

    This chapter analyses the progress that has been made since 1986 to produce reliable and scalable risk assessments for the most serious risks facing Mexico – including efforts to produce a geographic information system-based mapping of earthquake, hurricane and flood hazards with overlays of the population and infrastructure assets that are exposed to these hazards. Responsibility for risk assessment in civil protection policy planning and implementation is often spread across different bodies and levels of government. This chapter, therefore, also examines how the National Civil Protection System supports the development and use of consistent risk assessment methods to ensure comparable results across different levels of government.

  • Disaster risk prevention and mitigation

    This chapter analyses disaster risk prevention and mitigation activities, including structural measures (such as dams and levees) and non-structural measures (such as land-use planning, building codes, population relocation, building public awareness of risks and early warning systems). These measures are considered in terms of their importance to achieve Mexico’s civil protection goal of reducing disaster damages over the long term. It examines underlying governance challenges to the effective implementation of key disaster risk reduction measures, and the need to base risk prevention policies upon accurate and regularly updated risk identification and risk assessment.

  • Emergency preparedness and response

    This chapter focuses on progress in the National Civil Protection System in Mexico in terms of effective organisational structures for contingency planning and inter-agency communication to support counter disaster plans. Effective preparedness and response are the cornerstones of civil protection and contribute key capacities to an integrated approach to disaster risk management. Efficient preparation for large-scale disasters requires organisations to develop emergency plans that are coherent and interoperable with each other. Civil protection services from different organisations at different levels of government must be able to communicate effectively and work in a co-ordinated and efficient manner, both prior to and during an event, which implies regular joint training and drills, as well as strong linkages to organisations with roles in pre-disaster phases of disaster risk management.

  • Recovery and reconstruction

    Public policies to limit the longer term social and economic impacts of disasters are essential components of a holistic approach to civil protection. This chapter considers practices in support of business continuity planning, early recovery and reconstruction. It examines the actions of key industries to maintain operations and public policies in support of low income households affected by disasters. It also describes changes made over time to refine Mexico’s innovative risk transfer mechanisms for financing the reconstruction of public infrastructure through the FONDEN Disaster Reconstruction Fund. This specific financial mechanism is tailored to the country’s high exposure to hazards.

  • International co-operation to strengthen civil protection

    International co-operation plays an important role in comprehensive civil protection as risks do not stop at borders. This chapter examines the foundations for international co-operation in the Mexican National Civil Protection System. It identifies good practices in cross border co-operation between Mexico and its neighbouring countries in areas such as risk prevention, data sharing for the operation of early warning systems and preparation with joint training and exercises. It also considers co-operation in the broader international context of the provision, receipt and distribution of humanitarian assistance to and from other countries in the immediate aftermath of a disaster and the emerging role of Mexico as a donor of humanitarian assistance.

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