Increasing Resilience to Climate Change and Natural Hazards
Leading Organization:World Bank
Implementing Agency:IBRD - The World Bank
Climate resilience and disaster risk reduction strengthened in key sectors in Vanuatu by promoting a risk management approach to reduce vulnerabilities.
Vanuatu comprises about 80 islands with a land area of 12,336 sq. km spread over 1,300 km from north to south in the Western Pacific Ocean. It is geographically located in the “ring of fire” and the “cyclone belt” of the Pacific, its archipelagic characteristics, together with limited financial and technical capacity makes it extremely vulnerable to a range of natural hazards. Vanuatu has often experienced volcanic eruptions, cyclones, earthquakes, droughts, tsunamis, storm surge, coastal and river flooding and landslides. In addition it has suffered from extreme events associated with climate variability and sea level rise such as an increased frequency of tropical cyclones. Since 1939 Vanuatu has experienced 124 tropical cyclones, of which 45 were categorized as having hurricane force winds. Several of these disasters have caused loss of human lives, disrupted livelihoods and resulted in millions of dollars in damage to infrastructure. In recent times, cyclones Uma, Anne and Bola hit Vanuatu during 1987 – 1988 causing 50 deaths as well as significant damage in the agriculture and tourism sectors resulting in total destruction of property valued at over US$152 million. Cyclone Prema, which occurred in 1993, caused some US$60 million in damages, and Dani in 1999 resulted in damage to infrastructure estimated at US$8 million. The Penama earthquake and tsunami of November 1999 affected 23,000 people. Cyclones typically occur during the warmer months between November and April, but Cyclone Rita in May 1991 and Gina in June 2002 occurred out of season.
There is a high level of awareness among key stakeholders in Vanuatu of the risks posed by the hazards associated with climate change and natural disasters. Vanuatu is the only Pacific Island Country to have completed both a National Adaptation Program of Action (NAPA) and a National Action Plan (NAP) for Disaster Risk Reduction. A recent Global Fund for Disaster Risk Reduction (GFDRR) stock taking exercise, building on the NAPA and the NAP, also identified priorities. The stock-take also emphasized the links between climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction and the relevance of this approach for the Pacific Islands. Furthermore, the government is committed to follow through on the Hyogo Framework to integrate the management of climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction. Additionally, there is a commitment to merge the National Advisory Committee on Climate Change (NACCC) and the National Disaster Management Committee (NDMC). The project would be consistent with the above strategies and be designed to:
(i) address the main climate and weather related hazards facing Vanuatu;
(ii) address immediate priorities already identified through the NAPA, NAP and other consultation processes such as the GFDRR stock-take;
(iii) support the country’s sustainable development priorities;
(iv) take account of the existing and potential capacity for implementation; and
(v) the likelihood of achieving results. The overarching goal of this project, to be co-financed by the European Commission (EC), is to mainstream climate change adaptation and climate-related disaster risk reduction into core aspects of the Vanuatu economy and resource management systems. It would aim to reduce the previously mentioned vulnerabilities by promoting a risk management approach that addresses both weather and climate related hazards
1. Mainstreaming CCA & DRR at National, Provincial, and Community Levels 2. Strengthening Capacity in Planning for CCA and DRR 3. Implementing Climate Resilience Measures in Targeted Sectors 4. Project management
1. % of annual budget spent on CCA and DRR activities; and Number of sector plans that include CCA and DRR 2. Quality and timely information available for decision making; and # of area maps with hazard risks completed and available to users 3. % of households in targeted areas using sustainable practices introduced by the project; number of watershed or protected area/reserve plans prepared using hazard maps; % increase in water storage capacity in project areas; and # of new tourism investments guided by climate risk concerns
Project Status:Council Approved