Submitted by leannem on Thu, 02/25/2021 - 15:30
February 25, 2021 by leannem
Climate Change Resilience

23 February 2020 – The Pacific islands have repeatedly been recognised as one of the most vulnerable regions to the impacts of climate change. However, a key international initiative has acknowledged the existence of research and data gaps in Small Islands Developing States (SIDS) such as the Pacific.

The Lima Adaptation Knowledge Initiative (LAKI) Pacific SIDS, aims to prioritise these knowledge gaps in the Pacific region, examining the causes for such gaps, and catalysing collaborations to closethose gaps. A four-day virtual priority-setting workshop for LAKI Pacific SIDS commenced today hosted by the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) from the Pacific Climate Change Centre (PCCC). 

LAKI is a collaborative effort between the Secretariat of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) through its Global Adaptation Network. In the Pacific Region, it is coordinated by the UNEP Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific and SPREP. 

The three main goals of the LAKI are to prioritise knowledge gaps for target knowledge users in the Pacific sub-region; close priority knowledge gaps for target knowledge users by convening adaptation experts and institutions to take actions and scale up adaptation action in the Pacific sub-region; and gather evidence that capture success and progress, and strengthen the alignment with the UNFCCC as well as other relevant processes/forms.

According to the Director General of SPREP, Mr Kosi Latu, a reference group has been selected in consultation with UNEP and UNFCCC, which is expected to use their joint expertise on climate change and adaptation to guide the work in determining what the knowledge gaps are in the region, and what could be done to overcome these challenges. 

“Knowledge and institutional barriers have been specifically identified as major challenges for adaptation action in SIDS. There are undoubtedly many gaps in climate change knowledge in the Pacific region, ranging from a lack of available data on the health of our coral reefs to insufficiently downscaled climate projections and incomplete vulnerability assessments,” Mr Latu said. 

“Yet it has become evident that it is not simply a lack of knowledge that is the problem,” he added. “A core challenge lies in the consolidation, translation and communication of knowledge into formats that are useable and relevant to decision-makers.”

Mr Latu said that it is the hope of the Secretariat that the work of the LAKI Pacific-SIDS project will shine a light on where development partners could increase their investments, in support of the knowledge brokerage function of SPREP and the PCCC,

Dr. Youssef Nassef, Director of Adaptation Division, UNFCCC secretariat highlighted the role of the LAKI is a part of political process under the UNFCCC in scaling up adaptation actions maily in SIDS, LDCs and African countries. He further added that the LAKI catalyses high impact activities to rapidly and easily unlock adaptation barriers through long term partnerships with relevant institutions in the subregions.

Mr Sefanaia Nawadra, Head of the UNEP Pacific Sub-regional office, spoke during the official opening of the four-day workshop, and said, “This workshop should allow us to use a globally accepted and proven methodology to carry out the gap assessment and action prioritisation, as well as to use the outcomes to advocate sub-regional needs and priorities at regional and global fora.” 

The outcomes of this workshop will be presented at the 7th Asia Pacific Adaptation Forum being hosted by Japan from the 8-12th March. 

“It will also allow us to use the outcomes for strategic planning processes and help develop strong climate rationales essential to accessing finance,” he added. 

The Priority-setting workshop for LAKI Pacific SIDS is being held from 23 – 26 February 2020  at the Pacific Climate Change Centre and virtually on Zoom. 

For more information please contact Mr Espen Ronneberg, SPREP Climate Change Adviser, at [email protected]

Further information on the workshop: