The data comes from a survey of more than 125,000 people across 121 countries carried out in 2021 for the second edition of the Lloyd’s Register Foundation World Risk Poll, powered by Gallup. The Poll has also revealed that only 20% of Brazil’s population believe the Government is well prepared to deal with a disaster.
The figures contribute to a low assessment of the country’s resilience to shocks in the Foundation’s latest report – ‘A Resilient World? Understanding vulnerability in a changing climate – which has revealed Brazil’s score on the society component of the World Risk Poll Resilience Index is a third lower than the global average. Brazil also ranks 87th out of 111 countries assessed for its overall Resilience Index score, placing it in the lowest quartile.
Calculated from quantified experience of discrimination, perception of government attitudes towards wellbeing, and confidence in national institutions, low scores on the society component of the Resilience Index can indicate a lack of access to critical infrastructure and resources which help protect people from potential disasters.
The report also found that almost two thirds (64%) of Brazilians who have experienced a disaster said it was one caused by flooding or heavy rain, almost double the global rate of 37%. In addition, almost a quarter (22%) of those who have experienced disaster said it was caused by drought, over seven times the global average.
With such elevated experience of disasters caused by natural hazards, the data for Brazil also suggests that the poorest 20% of the population are much more likely to experience the negative impacts of such disasters.
While 14% of the richest 20% of the Brazilian population have been unable to obtain medical assistance or medicine for more than one day, this increases to half of the poorest 20%. The same inequality can be seen for food access – 11% of the richest 20% were affected by shortages for more than a day, while this figure rises to 43% for the poorest 20%. The report reveals similar inequalities when it comes to having gone without clean water for more than a day: 21% of the poorest 20% and 50% of the richest 20%.
Dr Sarah Cumbers, Director of Evidence and Insight at Lloyd’s Register Foundation, said: “We have created the Resilience Index as part of the World Risk Poll to support policymakers with identifying vulnerabilities to a wide range of safety risks, including severe weather events. Our findings will help them work with communities to better support them be prepared for, and cope with, a disaster.
“Brazil’s lower than average Resilience Index score shows there is progress to be made in improving resilience across all demographics, especially at a societal level. After the upcoming election, it will be an important challenge for the elected government to win back the population’s confidence by ensuring there is more equal access to infrastructure and resources to protect people from harm.”
Funding is available from Lloyd’s Register Foundation for further research and interventions using World Risk Poll data to reduce risk and improve resilience. To find out more, click here.