Mitigation is the effort to reduce loss of life and property by lessening the impact of disasters. Mitigation is taking action now - before the next disaster - to reduce human and financial consequences later (analyzing risk, reducing risk, insuring against risk). Effective mitigation requires that we all understand local risks, address the hard choices, and invest in the long-term community well-being. Without mitigation actions, we jeopardize of our safety, financial security, and self-reliance.
The Disaster Mitigation Act of 2000 requires all local, county, tribal and state governments to develop a multi-hazard mitigation plan for their respective jurisdiction in order to be eligible to receive certain hazard mitigation and public assistance funds to reduce long-term risk to life and property. In 2005, Pinal County and its local jurisdictions joined together and developed the Pinal County Multi-Jurisdiction Multi-Hazard Mitigation Plan. This plan received approval from Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) on November 2005.
The purpose of mitigation planning is to identify policies and actions that can be implemented over the long term to reduce risk and future losses. Mitigation Plans form the foundation for a community's long-term strategy to reduce disaster losses and break the cycle of disaster damage, reconstruction, and repeated damage. The planning process is as important as the plan itself. It creates a framework for risk based decision making to reduce damages to lives, property, and the economy from future disasters.
Each community benefits from mitigation planning by:
Identifying cost effective actions for risk reduction that are agreed upon by stakeholders and the public
Focusing resources on the greatest risks and vulnerabilities
Building partnerships by involving people, organizations and businesses
Increasing education and awareness of hazards and risk
Communicating priorities to state and federal officials
Aligning risk reduction with other community objectives