Sustainability, in the event of disasters is the ability of the community to recover from these disasters using resources found within the community (Rose, 2011). For example, in the event of a flood, the affected community is said to be resilient if it has the ability to rehabilitate and resettle all the victims without need for external aid. According to Adam Rose, this definition is affected by the need of stricken areas for external help, such as rescue aid and food aid extended to disaster victims (Rose, 2011).
Resilience is the link between disaster risk management and sustainability (Cutter, 2013). Therefore, there is a connection between risk management and sustainability. For example, better risk management reduces hazards and thus reduces the incidence of disasters, implying the society has a better ability to cope because there are fewer disasters (Cutter, 2013). Therefore, resilience is the ability of the society to maintain functionality even when it is shocked. The implication of this definition is resilience is a function of preparation and it enhances the sustainability of the concerned society (Cutter, 2013).

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Mitigation is the action of reducing the effects of a disaster. Embracing the concept of mitigation implies acceptance of impending disasters and thus emphasizing on the value of efforts to avert them. In contemporary times, climate related disasters are on the rise. For this reason, the United Nations is spearheading mitigation efforts for susceptible areas around the world.

Mitigation is used to reinforce planning and response to disasters. For this reason, it enhances resilience and consequently increases the ability of a society to sustain its self in the event of a disaster. On the other hand, sustainability implies the ability to plan or low incidence of disasters (United Nations Plan of Action on Disaster Risk Reduction for Resilience). The implication is that societies with mitigation measures are sustainable. The main limitation for all the concepts is the incidence of frequent disasters or catastrophes that exceed the ability of the society (Cutter, 2013).

  • Cutter, S. L. (2013). Building Disaster Resilience: Steps Toward Sustainability. Challenges in
    Sustainability, 1(2), 72-79.
  • Rose, A. (2011). Resilience and sustainability in the face of disasters. Environmental Innovation
    and Societal Transitions, 1(1), 96-100.
  • United Nations Plan of Action on Disaster Risk Reduction for Resilience. (2013). na: United
    Nations System Chief Executives Board for Coordination.