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2017 Flooding in Peru: Identifying Effective Disaster Risk Management and Resilience Efforts Through

Above: Piura, Peru

(Puedes leer este blog en español al final de la página)

A sudden warming of waters off Peru’s coast this year, as well as an unusual easing of trade winds, unleashed torrential downpours in February, March and April 2017 causing some of the worst flooding in Peru in decades. Over 1.1 million people have been affected in rural communities and urban areas in 24 of the country’s 25 departments. One third of the affected population, about 315,000 people, lives in the department of Piura.

Preliminary official reports indicate that 32,627 homes are destroyed or uninhabitable and nearly 200,000 homes are affected. Flood reconstruction will cost $3 billion in the short term, and up to $9 billion over five years, the country’s president, Pedro Pablo Kuczynski, said in an interview in early April.

The current flooding, while tragic, provides opportunities to better understand local disaster risk management. ISET-International will conduct a Post-Event Review Capability (PERC) report to better understand how disaster risk management, and resilience efforts at large, manifested during and after the floods.

ISET-International will work in collaboration with the organizations Practical Action Peru and IIASA and under guidance from the Zurich Flood Resilience Program. In the process of creating this PERC report, ISET-International aims to explore how previous flood risk management efforts, specifically those implemented by the Zurich Insurance Company, contributed to resilience, and identify which resilience actions are most effective for flooding of this scale. ISET will work with partners to identify how lessons from this report can be used to directly inform flood recovery efforts, capacitate key stakeholders to pursue needed policy and planning advocacy, and leverage the recovery phase to further resilience goals and ensure that pre-existing patterns of vulnerability are not perpetuated or exacerbated.

Above: Piura, Peru

The focus of this PERC will be on flooding in Piura, where partner Practical Action Peru is currently working. Flooding in Piura has been particularly severe in 2017, as well as flooding during the 1997-98 El Nino. We will work with partners to assure that the PERC report is integrated with their work and provides the foundation needed for actively engaging with policy makers at various levels to influence recovery decisions and spending in ways that enhance community resilience.

Our team will conduct discussions and interviews with local residents, water authorities and water experts, and local, state and national government entities. These discussions and interviews will be aimed at understanding what happened and what aspects of the flood were most problematic. ISET will investigate where residents, government employees, emergency responders, systems, laws and social norms proved to be flood resilient, and where there is opportunity for building increased flood resilience. The goal will be to draw out broader lessons and identify potential for solid, scalable, replicable action.

The final report will be published in Spanish, and in addition our team will create flyers, two-pagers, etc. as appropriate to the Peru local audience. It is our hope that in collaboration with our partners we can create content and framing that will support resilience outreach efforts.


Durante Febrero, Marzo, y Abril 2017 Perú se vio afectado por lluvias torrenciales debido a un calentamiento repentino de las aguas de las costas peruanas y un debilitamiento inusual de los vientos alisios. Esto ocasionó una de las peores inundaciones en Perú en las últimas décadas. Cerca de 1.1 millones de personas han sido afectadas en áreas urbanas y rurales en 24 de los 25 departamentos del Perú. Un tercio de la población afectada, cerca de 315,000 personas, vive en el departamento de Piura.

Reportes oficiales preliminares indican que 32,627 hogares han sido destruidos o no están en condiciones habitables y cerca de 200,000 hogares han sido afectados. El Presidente del Perú, Pedro Pablo Kuczynski, declaró en una entrevista a principios de Abril que la reconstrucción costará $3 billones en el corto plazo y $9 billones en un plazo de cinco años.

Las inundaciones que han ocurrido, au