NATURAL RISKS PREVENTION: AN ETHICAL AND CIVIL MISSION
From an article published in 112 Emergencies Journal.
Disclaimer: the views expressed in this paper solemnly engage the author
All the piuctures from: 112 Emergencies journal.
Following the great emotional impact that accompanied the dramatic events like the earthquakes in Belice, the Po and Arno floods, and continued with the earthquakes in Friuli and Irpinia, from the end of the sixties in Italy the need to create a technical structure that was able to coordinate the operational phases of an environmental emergency in a systematic way and with appropriate procedures became apparent. That's why the Civil Protection was founded.
The term "Civil Protection" encompasses the concept and the ethical value for which a Government protects its citizens: the State is made of citizens, who, if necessary, protect each other. From this reference point, many other concepts started to enrich and strengthen the meaning of this institution, so that today we all recognize its irreplaceable value.
|Flood in Northern Italy in November 2017.|
Prevention activities in the last years
have mitigated damages and avoided victims.
Recent studies have clearly established that the Italian population has gained very little awareness of the seismic risk to which it is exposed. That is why education through capillary and continuous information campaigns to the population is the key to facilitate new ways of tackling these risks and to promote the culture of prevention.
|Earthquake training for risk reduction|
in a Japanese school.
Who has the responsibility to sort out these issues? Through which tools? And in light of which criteria? Prevention involves both the entire social body and each individual. Everyone has their own share of responsibility in taking care of the common good. There are aspects of which the State must necessarily take charge, through a structure like the Civil Protection, with its operational mission and ethics. But there is also an ethical duty of each person to improve their preparation and to get ready to cooperate, a duty that as well as having value in itself and for themselves has the advantage of producing positive effects on the whole community. Therefore, the lack of preparation in the face of a potentially disastrous event is not just a political or technical issue, but more generally of all of us citizens, that we too often tend to delegate our safety to the responsibilities of others, or even, to entrust ourselves to fate. Defense against natural hazards is a form of respect for our human intelligence and a civic duty towards society.
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IAPG - International Association for Promoting Geoethics