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International Recovery Platform

Accelerating risk reduction through forward-looking investments and policies in Romania

Known for its bustling technology sector and expanding economy, Romania is also among the most vulnerable in the European Union to earthquakes. More than 75% of the population lives in areas that could be hit by earthquakes at any time, and in the last 100 years more than 400,000 people have been affected by 13 separate quakes. Moreover, 45% of all critical transport, energy, water and communication services, as well as 70"80% of the country's gross domestic product (GDP) are located in high risk seismic zones. A single earthquake in 1977, for example, caused damages in excess of US $2 billion and le 35,000 families without a home. Urban densification in areas like Bucharest, the third densest population center in the European Union, is only exacerbating impacts like this. Climate change has also substantially increased risks from extreme weather in recent decades, bringing more frequent landslides, wildfires, drought, floods and extreme weather events. In 2010, for example, extreme floods caused economic damage equivalent to 0.6% of GDP. Today, more than one million Romanians spread throughout 900 communities live in high flood-risk areas.

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