Wednesday 9 December 2020, Apia, Samoa – An update on the Next Generation of Climate Projections for the Western Tropical Pacific project, was held this month.
The project, funded by the Australian Government through the Australia-Pacific Climate Partnership (APCP) and the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) and implemented by the CSIRO Climate Science Centre in partnership with the Climate Change Resilience (CCR) programme of the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), provides Pacific Island countries with climate change science to inform decision making at policy and sectoral level.
The workshop sought feedback from participants on project outputs to date and raised awareness of the role of National Meteorological and Hydrological Services (NMHSs), and key sectors, in sharing climate change projection to guide policy, planning and implementation for resilience.
Director of SPREP’s CCR programme, Ms Tagaloa Cooper said the workshop was part of a series of activities with the goal of supporting Pacific Island countries to make informed decisions based on credible climate science.
‘We hope Pacific Island countries will use this reliable information on climate science to achieve their aspirations for a sustainable and resilient future,” she said.
Ms Cooper highlighted the work being done by the various government officials and representatives and heads of NMHSs across the Pacific and how it is key to bridging the gap between climate science and policy.
In addition, workshop case studies offered insight on how climate science can be used for planning and climate-based decision-making in industries across agriculture such as coffee, cocoa and root crops, as well as for tourism, health and other development sectors.
APCP Team Leader, Dr Kate Duggan emphasised the importance of the partnership between CSIRO, SPREP and the Pacific Meteorological Services:
“This collaboration focuses on the big job of ensuring that the good science produced in the Pacific is accessible so that people can factor the changes they’re experiencing into their livelihoods, their businesses and their communities.
We see this as crucial to the localisation of taking action on climate change in the Pacific, by Pacific countries and people.”
Dr Duggan added that the APCP would like to continue its support for the work started with the NextGen project and that the next stage will build on the large volume of work already completed.
CSIRO Climate Science Centre Programme Manager Dr Geoff Gooley set the scene on the first day of the workshop by providing an update on progress to date, and highlighted the importance of this project, as it implements the Pacific Climate Change Science and Services Research Roadmap, and capacity building undertaken through the Pacific Climate Change Centre in Apia.
“The NextGen projections are crucial in the knowledge value chain for Pacific climate change science and services,” he said.
“I encourage all providers, intermediaries and end-users of science-based services within this value chain to use climate change projections to plan and respond/adapt to climate change impacts.”
Workshop participants included representatives from APCP, CSIRO, Pacific National Universities, USP, Federated University, JICA, private sector representatives and SPREP, including representatives of the 14 partner countries of the NextGen project.
The Next Generation Climate Projections for the Western Tropical Pacific: supporting sectors through evidence-based decision-making workshop was held virtually on 7 and 9 December 2020.