China

Active Projects: 2

GDP (current US$): 11.19 trillion (2016)

Population: 1.37 billion (2016)

Major Partners

European Union, United Nations Development Programme, United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction, World Bank

INFORM Risk Rating: 4.1

Risk data from INFORM, a global open-source risk assessment for humanitarian crises and disasters, uses a scale from 0-10, with 10 as the highest level of risk.

Primary Hazards

Context

Natural Hazard Risk

China is exposed to an array of natural hazards, including droughts, earthquakes, floods, heat waves, landslides, severe cold, typhoons, and volcanoes. In recent decades, frequent natural disasters have caused high loss of life and damage to property in the country, endangering the country’s development gains. Between 2000 and 2015, natural disasters affected some 1.6 billion people and caused about $300 billion in damages.

Seismic-prone Sichuan Province has experienced some of China’s largest earthquakes. The magnitude 8.0 Wenchuan Earthquake killed over 69,000 people and caused $128 billion in economic losses in 2008. Nearly five years later, a magnitude 6.6 earthquake struck the province, affecting 2.2 million people.

On the country’s coast, seasonal storms hit regularly and typhoons make landfall at the highest rate in the world. The 2006 Saomai Typhoon, in highly exposed Fujian Province, sunk and damaged nearly 2,000 vessels and caused 241 fatalities. Sichuan and Fujian Provinces, among others, were also impacted by the 2016 June–July floods and storms.

Climate change is expected to increase the risks of hydro-meteorological hazards, especially in rapidly growing urban areas where people and assets are concentrated in hazardous places and unsafe structures. Coastal inhabitants, numbering over 130 million, are exposed to sea level rise, tropical storms, and flooding. Already, the frequency of these severe events is accelerating.

Government Priorities

China is shifting toward proactive disaster risk management (DRM) and building an institutional and legislative DRM framework. Under the unified leadership of the State Council, central government agencies coordinate disaster reduction and relief through such institutions as the National Commission for Disaster Reduction, situated within the Ministry of Civil Affairs. Monitoring early warning systems, mitigating emergencies, and managing rescue and relief efforts were central to the 2007 Emergency Response Law. By 2011, a five-year disaster reduction plan was enacted. As well, a national contingency plan was revised to strengthen, among others, early-warning systems, emergency response (including inter-departmental coordination), and drought relief.

The government also is leveraging new technologies, such as drones, to navigate disaster zones and to support relief work; and innovating to strengthen coastal and urban resilience. In 2015, for example, 16 cities piloted ecologically friendly technologies to absorb and reuse rainwater—“sponge” cities.

Building on these advances, the Government of China is prioritizing the following:

  • Strengthening DRM capacity at all levels of government through the national commission;
  • Incorporating risk information in land use planning;
  • Supporting resilient infrastructure development;
  • Deploying the use of technology throughout the DRM cycle; and,         
  • Knowledge sharing on multi-hazard risk reduction and capturing best practices to share nationally and internationally.
GFDRR progress to date

GFDRR has supported efforts to strengthen China’s capacity to respond to disasters and to improve preparedness at the local level since 2008. GFDRR’s support for DRM in China began at the regional level to help systematically quantify expected welfare and human development losses associated with natural hazards across countries in the East Asia and Pacific Region.

An ongoing GFDRR-supported project aims to strengthen multi-hazard risk reduction—especially for earthquakes, floods, landslides, and storms—in the provinces of Fujian and Sichuan. Developing information and early warning systems and including climate change considerations for hydrological hazards are among the activities, which began in 2016. To support implementing the World Bank $300 million disaster-resilient infrastructure project in Sichuan Province, activities will also share risk information and seismic risk mitigation measures for key infrastructure.

GFDRR and the Shanghai Meteorological Service, in December 2016, organized a capacity-building and knowledge-sharing event on reducing the impact of hydro-meteorological (hydromet) hazards in Shanghai. The event gathered representatives and experts from a variety of countries and regions and included practitioners from hydromet agencies and DRM authorities.

GFDRR is also helping through its City Resilience Program (CRP). A Just-in-Time grant is assessing the potential for mobilizing private capital for urban resilience investments and developing a longer-term engagement strategy for implementing CRP activities in Deyang City and Ya’an City.   

GFDRR support for activities in China dates to the post-Wenchuan Earthquake environment. GFDRR supported the government as it undertook a comprehensive damage, loss, and reconstruction needs assessment and supported recovery efforts for two more years. Reinforcing these efforts, GFDRR and international partners delivered training to the ASEAN Regional Forum on developing a common framework for post-disaster needs assessments, recovery, and reconstruction.

A 2009 GFDRR-financed study on coastal cities and climate change led to a multi-hazard Urban Disaster Risk Index pilot in the city of Ningbo in 2010. The pilot enabled local policymakers to assess the city’s susceptibility to climate and disaster impacts.

GFDRR anticipates continued demand from the Government of China for the following:

  • Helping cities build disaster resilience, especially for hydromet and seismic risks; 
  • Reducing disaster risks in coastal areas; 
  • Strengthening mechanisms to manage and to adapt to climate change; and, 
  • Exchanging knowledge and sharing best practices from China's national and international experience. 

Projects Awarded by GFDRR 2007 - Present

World Bank Engagements 2012 – Present

Project Description
Guizhou Tongren Rural Transport Project
$150 million | Start date: 04/2016 (Ongoing)

The objective of the Guizhou Tongren Rural Transport Project for China is to improve rural transport connectivity in Dejiang and Sinan Counties.

Hubei Jingzhou Historic Town Conservation Project
$100 million | Start date: 04/2016 (Ongoing)

The objective of the Hubei Jingzhou Historic Town Conservation Project for China is to conserve cultural heritage and improve water quality and tourism services in selected areas in Jingzhou Municipality.

Yunnan Highway Asset Management Project
$150 million | Start date: 04/2015 (Ongoing)

The project development objective is to improve the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of highway asset management in Yunnan.

Chongqing Small Towns Water Environment Management Project
$100 million | Start date: 04/2015 (Ongoing)

The project development objective is to reduce flood risks and improve wastewater infrastructure services in selected counties of Chongqing Municipality.

China-Qinghai Xining Water Environment Management Project
$150 million | Start date: 04/2015 (Ongoing)

The project development objective is to reduce water pollution and pilot potential sustainable reuse of wastewater in Xining Municipality.

Shaanxi Small Towns Infrastructure Project
$150 million | Start date: 04/2015 (Ongoing)

The project development objective is to improve the infrastructure and service delivery in selected small and medium towns in Shaanxi Province

Huainan Coal Mining Area Rehabilitation Project
$100.0 million | Start date: 04/2015 (ongoing)

The project development objective is to remediate and create a public space at the JiuDa mining site in Huainan city.

Integrated Modern Agriculture Development Project
$200 million | Start date: 04/2014 (Ongoing)

The project development objective is to develop sustainable and climate resilient agricultural production systems in selected areasof Gansu, Hunan, Jiangxi, and Liaoning provinces; Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous region; and Chonqging municipality.

Guiyang Rural Roads Project
$150 million | Start date: 04/2014 (Ongoing)

The development objective of the project is to provide improved transport accessibility in selected areas of Guiyang in a sustainable manner.

Anhui Yellow Mountain New Countryside Demonstration Project
$100 million | Start date: 04/2014 (Ongoing)

The project development objective is to improve the quality of services and income generating opportunities available to rural households in selected villages of Huangshan municipality.

Fujian Fishing Ports Project
$60 million | Start date: 04/2014 (Ongoing)

The project development objective is to reduce the vulnerability of fishing communities to extreme weather events in selected counties in Fujian Province.

Liaoning Coastal Economic Zone Urban Infrastructure and Environmental Management Project
$150 million | Start date: 04/2013 (Ongoing)

The project development objective is to improve the efficiency of urban transport and address water scarcity issues in selected cities in Liaoning Province

Jiangxi Wuxikou Integrated Flood Management Project
$100 million | Start date: 04/2013 (Ongoing)

The project development objectives are to reduce the flood risk in the central urban area of Jingdezhen City through implementation of priority structural and non-structural measures, and contribute to establishment of an integrated flood risk management system for the city.

Jiangxi Poyang Lake Basin and Ecological Economic Zone Small Town Development Project
$300 million | Start date: 04/2013 (ongoing)

The project development objective is to improve key public services in participating small towns of Jiangxi Province through improvements to prioritized infrastructure

Ma'anshan Cihu River Basin Improvement Project
$100 million | Start date: 04/2013 (Ongoing)

The project development objective is to improve drainage and flood protection capacity in urban areas of Ma’anshan Municipality

Hunan Forest Restoration and Development Project
$80 million | Start date: 04/2013 (Ongoing)

The project development objective is to enhance the resilience and environmental function of selected ice storm affected ecological forest plantations in Hunan Province by increasing forest species diversity and vegetative tree cover in those areas.

Guangxi Laibin Water Environment Project
$80 million | Start date: 04/2013 (ongoing)

The project development objective is to reduce flood risks and improve drainage in selected areas of Laibin city.

Water Conservation Project II
$80 million | Start date: 04/2012 (Ongoing)

The project development objective is to improve agriculture water management and to increase agriculture water productivity in the project areas.

China Technology Needs Assessment
$6.7 million | Start date: 04/2012 (Closed)

The project development objective is to support China's efforts to assess climate mitigation and adaptaion technology needs and adopt corresponding global best practices

Ningbo Sustainable Urbanization Project
$150 million | Start date: 07/2016 (Ongoing)

The Project Development Objective is to improve the use of urban public space, improve urban mobility and reduce flood risk in selected counties in Ningbo Municipality.

Anhui Road Maintenance Innovation and Demonstration Project
$150 million | Start date: 02/2017 (Ongoing)

The Project Development Objective is to improve highway maintenance delivery and asset management capacity in the participating municipalities and county in Anhui Province. The project will focus its activities in six selected jurisdictions in Anhui Province, the municipalities of Hefei, Chuzhou, Suzhou, Anqing, and Xuancheng and Guangde County.

Lushan Earthquake Reconstruction and Risk Reduction Project
$300 million | Start date: 10/2016 (Ongoing)

The Project Development Objectives are to improve access to disaster resilient infrastructure and strengthen risk reduction in select municipalities of Sichuan Province and to improve emergency preparedness in Shimian County in Sichuan Province.

Guangxi Rural Poverty Alleviation Pilot Project
$100 million | Start date: 12/2016 (ongoing)

The Project Development Objective is to increase income generation opportunities through demonstration of value chain development models in the project counties.