10 March 2023, Funafuti Tuvalu - A project which exists to improve regional, national adaptation and mitigation solutions to climate change in 15 Pacific countries has provided critical assistance to the tiny island of Tuvalu to battle the climate crisis.
Tuvalu, an archipelago of nine islands, which are home to 12,000 residents, is actively threatened by rising sea levels, as well as other extreme weather events.
For the past few years, the ACP GCCA+ Pacific Adaptation to Climate Change and Resilience Building (PACRES) Project team has been working with the Department of Climate Change in the Ministry of Finance, Government of Tuvalu, to build the atoll nation’s capacity to adapt to climate change and build resilience.
This resulted in the development of the Tuvalu Climate Change Policy and M&E Framework which was launched in November 2022. The work also led to the upgrade and maintenance of Tuvalu’s Climate Change Portal, which is now being updated regularly by the Tuvalu Department of Climate Change with assistance from the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP).
PACRES, funded primarily by the European Union (EU) with targeted support from Monaco and the Swiss Confederation, is delivered jointly by the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programmme (SPREP), the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (PIFS), the Pacific Community (SPC) and the University of the South Pacific (USP). The project will end in January 2024.
This week, PACRES Manager, Mr Semi Qamese, and PACRES Information and Knowledge Management Officer, Ms Emma Arasi-Sua, are in Funafuti Tuvalu on a mission to wrap-up the activities under the project. They met with the Acting Director for Climate Change Department, Ms Litiana Talake,the Climate Change Department Data and Information Officer, Mr Penivao Lonesi and Admin and Finance Officer, Ms. Lisiana Tausegia.
“We are already witnessing the beneficial impacts of the work being done in our Pacific communities, in this case Tuvalu,” said Mr Qamese.
“We’ve had a very fruitful discussion with our Tuvalu counterparts who have benefited from the development of the Tuvalu Climate Change Policy and M&E Framework. Tuvalu’s Climate Change Department has embedded the policy in their continued adaptation work to implement measures to enhance the local community livelihood and to promote sustainable development by reducing adverse effects of climate change.
“Another positive development is the Tuvalu Climate Change Portal updates which are now being done regularly by the department with assistance from the Secretariat. For these positive steps, we are extremely grateful for the support from the European Union and all our partners.”
Ms Talake welcomed the assistance and how it is making a difference in the lives of their communities.
“We have been working with SPREP to manage the uploading and updating of information and knowledge management products on the Portal. We have also cconsolidated climate change, disaster management, resilience building and other information and data sets held by government ministries and agencies, the private sector, NGOs and communities in Tuvalu and upload to the Portal,” she said.
“SPREP though the PACRES project has assisted in the development of climate change and disaster resilience information and knowledge management products to enhance community awareness to be hosted on the Portal. We have also engaged the SPREP PACRES Project Management Unit and Knowledge Management Team to identify good practice and lessons learned in sharing information on the impacts of climate change.”
PACRES aims to improve regional, national adaptation and mitigation solutions to climate change concerns faced in 15 Pacific ACP countries. The 15 Pacific ACP countries are: Cook Islands, Fiji, Federated States of Micronesia (FSM), Kiribati, Republic of the Marshall Islands, Nauru, Niue, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Timor-Leste, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu.