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EMERGENCY RESPONSE COORDINATION

 
 
Coordination and Response Division
 
 
Emergency Services Branch
 
 
   
Field Coordination Support Section (Project)  
 
   
Civil Military Coordination Section (Project)  
 
   
Logistics Support Unit (Project)  
 
   
Environmental Emergencies Section (Project)  
 
Internal Displacement Division
 

 

Emergency Services Branch


EMERGENCY SERVICES BRANCH
Planned Staffing Regular Budget Extra-budgetary Projects Total
Professional
5
1
13
19
General Service
1
2
7
10
Total
6
3
20
29
Staff costs (US$)
1,039,188
389,158
3,454,519
4,882,865
Non-staff costs (US$)
98,600
163,850
1,877,452
2,139,902
Total costs (US$)
1,137,788
553,008
5,331,971
7,022,767
Total requested (US$)
 
 
 
5,884,979

The Emergency Services Branch (ESB) is responsible for developing, mobilizing and coordinating the deployment of OCHA’s international rapid response capacities to provide assistance to countries affected by natural disasters and other emergencies. ESB manages three major projects: the Field Coordination Support Services Section (FCSS); the Military, Civil Defence and Logistics Support Section (MCDLS); and the Environmental Emergencies Services Section (EES); each with their distinctive mandates and tools for disaster response. ESB also oversees three Units dealing with information management and technology.

The Field Coordination Support Services (FCSS) Section provides disaster assessment and response coordination through the deployment of UNDAC teams. FCSS is responsible for international standard-setting for urban search and rescue and for establishing on-site operation coordination centres, as for deployment staff and modules provided by the International Humanitarian Partnership. The Section also manages OCHA’s Standby Partnerships to provide staffing support to field offices during emergencies. In addition, FCSS maintains the Virtual On-Site Operations Center (VOSOCC) for real-time exchange of practical information related to emergency response.

The Civil Military Coordination Section (CMCS) is responsible for ensuring appropriate coordination between civilian and military actors in a crisis or disaster, and for the mobilization of Military and Civil Defence Assets. The Central Register of Disaster Management Capacities is managed by the CMCS.

The Logistics Support Unit (LSU) is responsible for managing a stockpile of relief supplies that can be quickly dispatched to disaster-affected areas, and manages two parts of the OCHA Central Register: the Register of Emergency Stockpiles and the Register of Customs Contacts and Regulations. In times of disaster, LSU is also responsible for monitoring the international logistics situation and drawing attention to logistics bottlenecks.

The Environmental Emergencies Services Section (EES) provides specialized assistance to countries facing environmental emergencies and natural disasters with significant environmental impact.

ESB also oversees three units in Geneva, which are functionally part of the Advocacy and Information Management Branch (AIMB), namely: ReliefWeb; the Integrated Regional Information Networks (IRIN); and the Information Technology Section.

ESB’s key objectives for 2006 are to: strengthen coordination support and support to field administration mechanism and tools for response to natural disasters and humanitarian emergencies; better integrate OCHA response mechanisms and tools, including surge capacity, into humanitarian policy and practice in countries affected by emergencies; develop reliable partnerships in the public and private sector as a means of improving OCHA’s capacity for resource mobilization; and provide a solid and efficient service to the UN and the broader humanitarian community by expanding information management tools, including financial tracking, assessments for CAP and assessments of operational and technical gaps and capacity requirements.

Indicators:

  • Evidence that OCHA has provided timely and well-coordinated response to natural disasters and humanitarian emergencies, measured by speed of deployment in the case of UNDAC teams, environmental experts, Military and Civil Defence Assets, and relief shipments from the UNHRD in Brindisi.
  • UN Country teams make use of well-tried OCHA mechanisms for responding to disaster or humanitarian emergency, quantified by the numbers of requests received and of disaster-response tools deployed.
  • Expansion of partnerships with non-UN entities, measured by number of IHP/APHP support modules and staff deployed; number of staff provided by OCHA’s stand-by partners; number of actors involved in the Environmental Emergencies Partnership.

 


Field Coordination Support Section


FIELD COORDINATION SUPPORT SECTION
Planned Staffing Regular Budget Extra-budgetary Projects Total
Professional
1
-
4
5
General Service
-
-
3
3
Total
1
-
7
8
Staff costs (US$)
148,596
-
1,194,555
1,343,151
Non-staff costs (US$)
-
-
577,995
577,995
Total costs (US$)
148,596
-
1,772,550
1,921,146
Total requested (US$)
 
 
 
1,772,550

UNDAC DEVELOPING COUNTRIES DEPLOYMENT AND TRAINING PROJECT
Planned Staffing Regular Budget Extra-budgetary Projects Total
Professional
-
-
-
-
General Service
-
-
-
-
Total
-
-
-
-
Staff costs (US$)
-
-
-
-
Non-staff costs (US$)
-
-
938,931
938,931
Total costs (US$)
-
-
938,931
938,931
Total requested (US$)
 
 
 
938,931

The Field Coordination Support Section (FCSS) manages the United Nations Disaster Assessment and Coordination (UNDAC) Team worldwide, acts as the Secretariat for the International Search and Rescue Advisory Group (INSARAG), manages OCHA’s relationship with standby partners for the provision of seconded staff to support OCHA’s surge capacity and acts as Secretariat to the International Humanitarian Partnership. The tools and services managed through FCSS are designed to support and enable OCHA to respond quickly and effectively to sudden-onset disasters. The FCSS secretariat function for INSARAG has led to a more coherent international search and rescue capacity worldwide.

Key objectives for 2006 are to: ensure that the UNDAC Team continues to develop in such a way that it maintains its niche and is recognised as a value-added component of the international humanitarian response system, with particular reference to the continued development of the UNDAC team for Africa; develop standby partnerships with new and non-traditional partners, particularly in the Middle-East and Asia-Pacific regions; enhance the relationship with the International Humanitarian Partnership, as well as support the development of the Asia-Pacific Humanitarian Partnership; continue work on development of the INSARAG network and common standards for international search and rescue; and ensure that FCSS’s information management activities are more closely linked to those of the Field Information Support Section.

Activities:

  • Maintain the UNDAC team as a tool for disaster response coordination, with particular emphasis placed on capacity building in disaster prone countries: UNDAC Induction Course, Lausanne, May 2006; Americas Induction Course Panama, May-June 2006; UNDAC Asia Induction Course, Seoul, Korea, September 2006. Advocate for the role of UNDAC in supporting governments of disaster-prone countries and UN country teams in these countries (interface with OCHA Regional Disaster Response Advisers and OCHA’s Coordination and Response Division; encourage involvement of OCHA senior management and HCs/RCs in UNDAC courses, conduct disaster response preparedness missions whereby recourse to the UNDAC mechanism and INSARAG Guidelines are written in to national disaster management plans. Develop UNDAC team capacity to provide overall analyses of sectoral assessments conducted by partners at the sites of disasters, for dissemination through the Virtual OSOCC and OCHA Situation Reports.
  • Conduct UNDAC disaster response missions with regional participation and the technical support of the International Humanitarian Partnership/ Asia-Pacific Humanitarian Partnership (IHP/APHP) (circa 10 missions per year).
  • Chair and seek assistance from the IHP and APHP for technical and human resources to support OCHA in the field in the event of sudden-onset disaster or humanitarian emergency. Further develop the APHP along the same lines as the longer standing IHP (at least one meeting in each region with members of the IHP and APHP consortiums).
  • Ensure adherence to international guidelines and procedures for deployment of urban search and rescue (USAR) teams to earthquake emergencies (INSARAG Regional Meetings for the Americas, Guatemala, February 2006 and also the Africa/ Europe and Asia/Pacific Regions; INSARAG Asia-Pacific USAR Exercise, China, June 2006).
  • Continue to approach standby partners for provision of temporary staff to support OCHA field offices facing the unpredictable (maintain present standby partnerships and develop new ones including with NGOs or the private sector). Nurture present partnerships (DFID, UK, Norwegian Refugee Council, Danish Refugee Council, Swedish International Development Agency (Sida), Red R Engineers for Disaster Relief, Australia, Austcare, Australia, UNV) and develop new ones including with NGOs or the private sector, and offer training for members
    of standby partner rosters.
  • Conduct at least two disaster response preparedness missions in the course of the year to disaster-prone countries requesting this service. Identify gaps in national disaster management plans in the course of UNDAC disaster response preparedness missions to disaster-prone countries, and advise on procedures to close these gaps.
  • Exercise the On Site Operations Coordination Centre (OSOCC) function as designed by the International Search and Rescue Advisory Group (INSARAG) and developed and activated by the United Nations Disaster Assessment and Coordination (UNDAC) system: one OSOCC Training Course envisaged per year. Participate in Exercise Triplex 2006 alongside other major disaster response players.
  • Within the framework of GDACS, FCSS will continue developing procedures and standards for disaster information exchange between affected countries and responders. The Virtual OSOCC will be modified to serve as a platform for standardized informationexchange. In addition, FCSS will continue to strengthen the network of GDACS stakeholders, building on the INSARAG network, with a priority of including disaster-prone countries in the system.

Indicators:

  • Number and percentage of UNDAC Teams deployed within 24 hours of a request from the UN Resident Coordinator or affected government.
  • Number of staffing gaps filled with staff through OCHA’s institutional partnership with standby partners.
  • Number of IHP/APHP support modules and staff deployed in support of OCHA.
  • Number of international USAR and humanitarian response actors making use of Virtual OSOCC for exchange of operational information and coordination of response activities.
  • Number and percentage of UNDAC members from disaster-prone countries.
  • Percentage of USAR teams applying INSARAG Guidelines.

 


Civil Military Coordination Section


CIVIL MILITARY COORDINATION SECTION
Planned Staffing Regular Budget Extra-budgetary Projects Total
Professional
-
-
7
7
General Service
-
-
2
2
Total
-
-
9
9
Staff costs (US$)
-
-
1,633,275
1,633,275
Non-staff costs (US$)
-
-
258,374
258,374
Total costs (US$)
-
-
1,891,649
1,891,649
Total requested (US$)
 
 
 
1,891,649

The Civil Military Coordination Section (CMCS), previously entitled Military and Civil Defence Unit (MCDU), is the focal point within the United Nations system for the efficient mobilisation of Military and Civil Defence Assets (MCDA) for use in humanitarian emergencies and for liaison with governments, international organizations, regional organizations and military/civil defence establishments deploying these assets. CMCS manages and conducts the UN Civil-Military Coordination (UN CMCoord) training programme along with pre-deployment training courses for military and civilian actors. It also coordinates UN agency participation, and participates in major military exercises comprising significant humanitarian scenarios.

The Section is responsible for the overall management of the OCHA Central Register of Disaster Management Capacities, with specific maintenance of the MCDA Directory containing a list of Military and Civil Defence Assets and expertise.

CMCS acts as a facilitator and secretariat to the development of documents involving the broad international humanitarian community and is custodian of the “Oslo” and “MCDA” Guidelines detailing the use of MCDA in support of UN humanitarian operations in natural, technological and environmental disasters and complex emergencies respectively.

In addition to the Section’s mandated activities, in 2006 CMCS will practically test the UN CMCoord Field Handbook in humanitarian operations. A major challenge will be the implementation of the IASC endorsed UN Humanitarian CMCoord Concept, seeking Member State participation in forming OCHA trained National Standby Teams for effective CMCoord deployment.


Activities:

  • Identify, secure approval, mobilize and deploy MCDA in the field in response to validated requests from Humanitarian Coordinators.
  • As a Humanitarian Common Service, maintain and further develop a UN Civil-Military Coordination (UN CMCoord) Officer system for rapid response to humanitarian field operations and continue to provide support to existing CMCoord functions and advocate for the expansion of UN CMCoord posts in OCHA regional offices.
  • Implement the IASC-endorsed UN Humanitarian CMCoord Concept for the timely and rapid deployment of UN CMCoord Officers; seek support from Member States for a national stand-by capacity and tailor UN CMCoord Officer training to meet these needs.
  • Test, among all partners, the UN CMCoord field handbook for the use of humanitarian and military actors in natural disasters and complex emergencies.
  • Act as the focal point and facilitator of the Guidelines for the Use of Military and Civil Defence Assets in Natural Disasters (Oslo Guidelines) and the Guidelines on the Use of Military and Civil Defence Assets to Support United Nations Humanitarian Activities in Complex Emergencies (MCDA Guidelines). Explore additional funding/sponsorship for the broader dissemination and advocacy of the MCDA Guidelines.
  • Maintain liaison with NATO and subordinate commands, European Union (Council and Commission), European Union Military Staff, UN and NGOs on operational contingency planning, doctrinal development and dissemination of knowledge and guidelines.
  • Subject to sponsorship, conduct up to eight UN CMCoord basic training courses and up to three staff level training courses during the year.
  • Act as focal point for UN agencies in planning for and participating in military exercises with the largest multinational training audience and/or an extensive humanitarian scenario.
  • Incorporate data on lessons observed by UN CMCoord Officers and all other players in humanitarian field operations and exercises into the UN CMCoord Lessons Observed Database and produce after-action reports.
  • Assist in and/or organize targeted pre-deployment and other specific CMCoord training programmes for DPKO and/or troop-contributing nations; peacekeeping forces; NATO and other regional organizations; national and multi-national forces, as requested.
  • Manage and maintain the OCHA Central Register of Disaster Management Capacities. Update the MCDA Directory of the Central Register, in close collaboration with asset/service providers.

Indicators:

  • Balance of MCDA mobilized in relation to the number of MCDA requests released.
  • Number and percent of OCHA-trained UN CMCoord Officers deployed through the OCHA UN CMCoord Officer system and national stand-by capacity network.
  • Number of developing countries, UN agencies, NGOs, military and regional actors participating in UN CMCoord training courses, military exercises and other CMCoord-related events.
  • Number of regional and national partners and UN CMCoord training graduates used as trainers and participants in military exercises.
  • Number of international military forces participating in specific CMCoord-related training programmes and pre-deployment training.

 


Logistics Support Unit


LOGISTICS SUPPORT UNIT
Planned Staffing Regular Budget Extra-budgetary Projects Total
Professional
-
-
1
1
General Service
-
-
2
2
Total
-
-
3
3
Staff costs (US$)
-
-
423,967
423,967
Non-staff costs (US$)
-
-
19,662
19,662
Total costs (US$)
-
-
443,629
443,629
Total requested (US$)
 
 
 
443,629

The Logistics Support Unit (LSU) has been responsible for OCHA’s emergency stockpile since the establishment of the OCHA Pisa Warehouse in 1985. In 2000, the stocks were relocated to the newly-created United Nations Humanitarian Response Depot (UNHRD) in Brindisi, Italy, and the warehouse management function was divested to WFP. However, LSU continues to help ensure the delivery of basic relief goods (including inter alia shelter and water distribution equipment) to disaster-affected countries, and coordinates the replenishment of the stocks with donor governments. LSU is involved in logistics coordination through participation in the UNJLC, as well as in discussions on other logistics matters, such as common air services (UNHAS), the tracking of relief goods, the establishment of guidelines for shelter provision in emergencies, and the study for the establishment of an Emergency Logistics Response Facility in South-East Asia. During the particularly complex relief operations following the Indian Ocean Tsunami and the 2005 South Asia Earthquake and Indonesia (Nias) earthquake, LSU issued regular reports covering logistics aspects, highlighting main bottlenecks and priorities.

Activities:

  • Maintain OCHA’s stockpile at an appropriate level of replenishment to respond to disasters and ensure, that the types of goods in stock adequately meet the needs of beneficiaries and arrange shipments of relief goods to disaster-affected areas.
  • Participate in inter-agency meetings on logistic matters at all levels (UNJLC, UNHAS Steering Group, HRR Cluster Working Groups on Logistics and Emergency Shelter, the Humanitarian Response Network, the establishment of an Emergency Logistics Response Facility in South-east Asia).
  • Disseminate to and negotiate with governments on the UN Model Agreement on Customs Facilitation.
  • Maintain the “Register of Emergency Stockpiles” and the “Register of Customs Contacts and Regulations”, of the “OCHA Central Register”.
  • Participate, with UNJLC and other agencies, in the development of appropriate mechanisms (LSS or other systems) to track deliveries of relief items.
  • Participate in projects and meetings with the various partners of “Shelterproject”, including a project to up-date the publication “Shelter after Disaster”.
  • Monitor the international logistics situation and issue reports on logistics bottlenecks and priorities during large-scale disaster response operations.

Indicators:

  • Dispatch of appropriate relief items from the UNHRD to disaster-affected countries, in two to five days.
  • Stockpile is replenished within a month of shipment (in the case of goods donated in-kind by Norway) or in bulk three to four times a year (in the case of items purchased through systems contracts, with cash contribution by the Italian Government).
  • Model Agreement on Customs Facilitation with a Member State and initiate negotiations with Member States, focusing on disaster-prone countries.

 


Environmental Emergencies Section


FIELD SUPPORT SECTION
Planned Staffing Regular Budget Extra-budgetary Projects Total
Professional
-
-
1
1
General Service
-
-
-
-
Total
-
-
1
1
Staff costs (US$)
-
-
202,722
202,722
Non-staff costs (US$)
-
-
82,490
82,490
Total costs (US$)
-
-
285,212
285,212
Total requested (US$)
 
 
 
285,212

 

The Environmental Emergencies Section is a collaborative arrangement between OCHA and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) that serves as the integrated United Nations emergency response mechanism to provide international assistance to countries facing environmental emergencies and natural disasters with significant environmental impacts. The Section is responsible for the mobilization and coordination of urgent assistance to affected countries, when national or local capacities are exceeded or specialized expertise is required.

OCHA and UNEP collaborated to launch the Environmental Emergencies Partnership at the World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD). The Partnership, which aims to reduce the frequency and severity of environmental emergencies through more effective and integrated prevention, preparedness and response, is engaged in a number of multi-stakeholder initiatives and specific projects which build capacity at the national, regional and international levels.

Activities:

  • Continue to mobilize and coordinate emergency assistance to countries facing environmental emergencies and natural disasters with significant environmental impacts, upon governmental request.
  • Integrate environmental perspective into response to natural disasters.
  • Develop, in collaboration with partners, an enhanced rapid environmental assessment methodology to use in situations requiring very fast completion time, including UNDAC missions.
  • Produce and disseminate effective environmental assessment reports and information products to donors and the international community.
  • Expand the roster of environmental experts to assess and take action upon acute environmental impacts of natural disasters. This will be supported, as appropriate, by enhanced mobilization procedures.
  • Conduct initial research and planning, in collaboration with partners, on the development of a Joint Environmental Emergency Response Plan. This will include an initial mapping of existing response capacities.
  • Provide training for preparedness and response to environmental emergencies and the environmental dimensions of natural disaster to facilitate capacity building and awareness raising.
  • Continued implementation of multi-stakeholder Environmental Emergencies Partnership to leverage additional partner engagement and resources, including private sector.

Indicators:

  • Every request for assistance is dealt with an efficient and timely way.
  • Number of deployable experts on environmental emergency roster.
  • New rapid environmental assessment methodology is developed and field-tested in at least two disaster responses.
  • Number of staff trained in capacity building, prevention, preparedness and response to environmental emergencies at the national and regional levels organized.
  • Five countries from major regions, six UN agencies, three non-governmental organizations, two academic institutions, and three private sector corporations are directly involved in the activities of the Environmental Emergencies Partnership.