Early Warnings for All

The Early Warnings for All initiative aims to ensure universal protection from hazardous hydrometeorological, climatological and related environmental events through life-saving multi-hazard early warning systems, anticipatory action and resilience efforts by the end of 2027, as called for by the United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres in 2022.  

With human-induced climate change leading to more extreme weather and climate conditions, the need for effective multi-hazard early warning systems is more crucial than ever. Systems that warn people of impending storms, floods or droughts and support action are not a luxury but cost-effective tools that save lives, reduce economic losses, and provide a nearly tenfold return on investment. 

Early warning systems have already helped decrease the number of deaths and have reduced losses and damages resulting from hazardous weather, water or climate events. But major gaps still exist, especially in small island developing states and least-developed countries:

  • 50% of countries worldwide report having adequate multi-hazard early warning systems
  • Climate, weather and water-related extremes have led to 15 times more deadly hazards in Africa, South Asia, South and Central America, and small island states
  • 70% of all deaths from climate-related disasters have occurred in the 46 poorest countries over the past 50 years

Early Warnings for All objectives and Action Plan 

The Early Warnings for All initiative brings together the broader UN system, governments, civil society and development partners across the public and private sectors to enhance collaboration and accelerated action to address gaps and deliver people-centered, end-to-end multi-hazard early warning systems. Through coordination and collaboration, the initiative aims to build on and scale up existing efforts and capacities, promoting synergies among initiatives and partnerships across sectors to protect lives and livelihoods from natural hazards such as floods, heatwaves, storms and tsunamis.

Lightning over a city and lake at night.
Early Warnings for All:
Executive Action Plan 2023-2027
“The facts are clear. Early warnings save lives and deliver vast financial benefits. I urge all governments, financial institutions and civil society to support this effort.” – UN Secretary-General António Guterres

Early Warnings for All Dashboard

The Early Warnings for All Initiative dashboard aims at tracking progress, informing decision-making and measuring success as key elements for achieving its five-year goal of the Early Warnings for All Initiative: to ensure that all people on Earth are covered by early warning systems by 2027.

2023 Progress Report

The Global Status of Multi-Hazard Early Warning Systems 2023 report outlines the progress that has been made under the Early Warnings for All (EW4All) initiative. It seeks to highlight good practices through case studies and examples of both global and regional initiatives which are contributing to the achievement of the goal set by the UN Secretary-General.

The four pillars of Early Warnings for All 

The Early Warnings for All initiative is built on four pillars to support countries in building and operating effective and inclusive multi-hazard early warning systems: 

Disaster Risk Knowledge

Collecting data and undertaking risk assessments to increase knowledge on hazards and vulnerabilities and trends

Detection, observation, monitoring, analysis and forecasting

Developing hazard monitoring and early warning services

Warning dissemination and communication

Communicating risk information to all those who need it

Preparedness and response capabilities

Building national and community response capabilities

Early warning systems have proven to be a cost-effective and reliable solution to protect lives and livelihoods from natural hazards such as floods, heatwaves, storms and tsunamis. The Global Status Report (2022) reveals that countries with substantive-to-comprehensive early warnings coverage have disaster mortality eight times lower than countries with limited coverage. According to the Global Commission on Adaptation, giving just 24 hours’ notice of an impending hazardous event can reduce damage by 30 per cent. Investing just US$800 million in such systems in developing countries would prevent losses of $3 to $16 billion annually.

With 95 per cent of the world's population having access to mobile broadband networks and nearly 75 per cent owning a mobile phone, mobile networks have become powerful communication channels that can effectively target those in at-risk areas.

Aerial view of flooded village with people in a boat-like structure surrounded by partially submerged houses and muddy water.
Early Warnings for All Videos
Learn more about the scope, reach, and impact of the initiative through a selection of videos.

Advisory Panel

To ensure progress and the continued strategic alignment of activities with implementing bodies, the UN Secretary-General created the Early Warnings for All Advisory Panel, co-chaired by the Executive Heads of WMO and UNDRR, for the duration of the Initiative. The Advisory Panel consists of the Heads of a multitude of UN organizations, the private sector, civil society and UN Member States. Meetings of the Advisory Panel occur biannually, and the Panel prepares an annual progress report to the Secretary-General on the status of the Initiative’s activities. 

The initiative is also engaging development partners through existing partnerships and coalitions such as the Alliance for Hydromet Development, the Risk-informed Early Action Partnership and other regional partnerships and alliances.

Pillar Leads