It’s been ten years since the Wenchuan Earthquake struck China, leaving an everlasting scar on ravaged land, but also revealing the strong and unyielding will of the Chinese people.
|Remembering May 12, 2008 - a boy in Weima Town looks at the Town’s rebuilding plans with the construction going on around.|
We have all probably heard the old adage “Earthquakes don’t kill people, buildings do”. Recent temblors in Haiti and earlier in China have tragically demonstrated the truth of this. Out-of-date building codes and regulations, poor enforcement and badly-planned urbanization have all greatly increased the risk of urban disasters all over the developing world.
|This is my last week in the World Bank, after working at the institution for 20 years, the last five as country director for China and Mongolia.|
|A fireman showing the Bank's Global Disaster Management team around Onna.|
|We have heard stories of tragedy since the Sichuan - Wenchuan Earthquake, but we have also seen the signs of recovery and hope.|
Today is also a day of reflection for me. I am thinking about all of the people we have met in Sichuan over the last year who have been affected by the earthquake – the millions who have lost their homes, their land and their livelihood. I am also thinking about the many, many people who have lost loved ones – their children, parents, husbands, wives, sisters, brothers and friends. I have met and spoken with some of these survivors over the last year and they are in my mind today.
Two weeks ago a World Bank team visited Sichuan, including some of the most devastated areas such as Beichuan county. My colleagues, Mara Warwick and John Scales, took photos and produced a slideshow --see it below in video version: