Climate Change Adaptation, Water, Sanitation and Hygiene is everybody’s business

Aug 15, 2016

Acting Director for Climate Change Division in the Solomon Islands, Hudson Kauhiona, speaking during the SIWSAP national feedback session. He was among SIWSAP partners and stakeholders participating at the event in Honiara (Photo: UNDP/Ruth Ramoifuila)

Honiara, Solomon Islands: A national feedback session to present key findings, recommendations and lessons learned of a climate change vulnerability assessment on water, sanitation and hygiene for Taro, Gizo and Tigoa provincial towns, and in the rural communities of Santa Catalina, Tuwo and Ferafalu successfully concluded in Honiara today.

In his official opening remarks this morning, the Minister for Mines, Energy and Rural Electrification David Dei Pacha said, “This national feedback session is critical to establish an understanding of climate change hazards such as cyclones, sea level rise, and drought and the dangers these hazards cause communities.  

“Furthermore, this meeting will confirm from the communities and other stakeholders how to better implement activities for them to adapt to the impacts of climate change now and onwards.”

The climate change vulnerability adaptation (CCVA) assessment was carried out over a period of six months between November 2015 and March 2016. 

Some of the key findings show that water resources and infrastructure is inadequate for growing townships and communities, there is low awareness about water conservation methods and sanitation, and the governance of water resources is lacking; these makes communities vulnerable during droughts or even when water is available.

In her opening remarks this morning, the UNDP Country Manager Azusa Kubota said the CCVA assessment will be a useful climate change and water-sector policy tool for National and Provincial Governments.

“Governments can use these climate change vulnerability assessments as a reference to inform future climate change adaptation interventions in Solomon Islands townships and communities”, Ms Kubota said.

The assessment is the work of the Solomon Islands Water Sector Adaptation Project in partnership with the Ministry of Mines, Energy and Rural Electrification, the Ministry of Environment, Climate Change, Disaster Management and Meteorology, the Ministry of Planning and Aid Coordination and the Ministry of Health and Medical Services. The assessment is also a result of working with six provincial governments and pilot communities.

The national feedback session on the adaptation planning process brings together Provincial Assembly Members, Provincial Government representatives and community representatives from the sites SIWSAP currently works in. 

The session was also be attended by the National Planning Division, the Environmental Health Division and the Climate Change Division, non-government organizations and other organizations that implement climate change adaptation activities in Solomon Islands.

The Solomon Islands Water Sector Adaptation Project is funded by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) through the UN Development Programme and implemented by the Water Resources Division in the Ministry of Mines, Energy and Rural Electrification.

Contact information

Ruth Ramoifuila, Water Resources Division, Ministry of Mines, Energy and Rural Electrification; tel: +677 23093; email: ruth.ramoifuila@undp.org

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