An UNDAC team was deployed to Papua New Guinea following the 7.5 magnitude earthquake that struck the Highlands of Papua New Guinea on 26 February 2018 that left approximately 270,000 people requiring immediate humanitarian assistance. The team was composed of seven members, the Cook Islands and an environmental expert from the Netherlands deployed by the European Union Civil Protection Mechanism through the UN Environment/OCHA Joint Unit. The mission objectives were as follows:
— Support humanitarian coordination of the National Disaster Centre (NDC), Resident Coordinator and Disaster Management Team (DMT) at the provincial level in Mt. Hagen to kick-start the response
– Support Government coordination
– Support conduct of assessments
– Support environmental assessment
– Information management and reporting
– Ensure regular situation reporting
The deployment of UNDAC members from the region ensured a regional approach to augmenting in-country capacity and already existing structures, such as including the disaster management team, the national and local coordination structures.