Working towards resilient Samoa

By Vatapuia Maiava 13 July 2016, 12:00AM

Sometimes the best form of defence is simply a good plan.

And when going up against climate change which threatens everyone in Samoa, then a lot of good planning is needed.

Yesterday the United States (U.S.) Ambassador Mark Gilbert officially opened the “Road to Resilience” Workshop at Millenia Hotel with the Minister of Women, Community and Social Development, Faimalotoa Kika Stowers present.

The workshop aims at combating the effects of Climate Change in three key ways: to build resilience of vulnerable coastal communities in the Pacific, make better preparation plans and climate change adaptation plans. With the bulk of Samoa’s population located in areas prone to climate change effects such as coastal erosion, sea level rise and extreme weather conditions; this workshop will help the people of Samoa prepare for the worst which will ultimately save lives.

The workshop also aims to bring government agencies and communities onboard in support of U.S.A.I.D.-funded disaster preparedness planning and climate change project.

“As you know, the U.S. Government and the Samoan Government have been working closely to advance development in your community,” Mr. Gilbert said in his opening remarks.

“We are particularly grateful for Samoa’s partnership with the U.S.A.I.D. as they pursue their work in your country.”

Mr. Gilbert understands the threat of Climate Change and knows the importance of being prepared for its effects.

“Sustainability is a key goal of everything we do at the U.S. Embassy and at U.S.A.I.D.,” he said. “The importance of sustainability is why I was so pleased to have the opportunity to speak with you today.

“The action plans that you develop over these two days will help ensure that you have the knowledge and resources you need to maintain the projects you’re completing in partnership with the Coastal Community Adaptation project (C-C.A.P.); like the rainwater catchment and distribution systems in eight communities in Savai’i and Upolu.

“It will also ensure that you understand how to use C-C.A.P.’s tools like the Infrastructure Prioritization Index, and Climate Change Risk Mapping so you can apply them to support even more communities.” Mr. Gilbert officially opened the workshop by presenting Faimalotoa with the three year U.S.A.I.D. C-C.A.P.’s reports, methodologies and designs.

By Vatapuia Maiava 13 July 2016, 12:00AM

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