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Project Primary Groups


Project Coordinator: Mr Sitia Maheu

The ten countries covered by this Action are Small Island Developing States (SIDS) with a total population of about 1.5 million people spread over an immense area of ocean in the western Pacific equivalent to 15% of the globe’s surface. This diverse region falls into three geographical areas of the western Pacific: Melanesia (Fiji); Micronesia (Palau, Federated States of Micronesia (FSM), Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI), Nauru and Kiribati); and Polynesia (Cook Islands, Niue, Tonga and Tuvalu). The nine project countries located in Micronesia and Polynesia each have populations of less than 110,000 and five of those countries have populations less than 20,000. The population of Fiji is 837,271. The total gross domestic product (GDP) for the ten countries is EUR 7.6 billion (2015 estimate). This group of countries (with the exceptions of Tonga and Fiji) forms a specific group known as the Pacific Smaller Island States (Pacific SIS) established in 2005 at the Pacific Islands Forum Meeting, to recognise the special needs of smaller island states given their limited capacity, and fragile and vulnerable environments. These eight countries, together with Tonga and Fiji, have voiced their concern on numerous occasions that climate change remains the single most important priority for their countries and have expressed their commitment to take proactive adaptation and mitigation measures. The ten countries covered by this Action consist of low-lying atolls, raised atolls, high volcanic islands and low islands. Given the vast distances, limited air and sea transport routes, and the scattered nature of the population centres many countries are seeing migration to their capital island leaving outer islands with depleted populations, and capital islands facing increasing challenges associated with urbanisation, lack of housing and jobs. The project will build on the successful approach to outer island project delivery adopted by the Global Climate Change Alliance: Pacific Small Island States (GCCA: PSIS) project, which focused on delivery of on-the-ground adaptation activities in outer islands. Against this background the GCCA+ SUPA Action will focus on scaling up adaptation activities in specific sectors supported by knowledge management and capacity building.

The proposed Action takes place within the framework of an existing Financing Agreement between the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (PIFS) and the European Union (EU) for the implementation of the Global Climate Change Alliance Plus - Scaling-up Pacific Adaptation (GCCA+ SUPA) Programme. The Action contributes to the implementation of the regional component of this Programme. This action will be implemented in indirect management with the Pacific Community (SPC) and the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), who will enter into a Co-Delegation Agreement with SPC as lead and coordinating organisation. A separate Grant Agreement for Euros 2.1 million will be signed between the European Commission and the University of the South Pacific (USP). Within a framework of close collaboration and integration, each of the three regional implementing organizations has responsibility for delivery of a specific output as further detailed below. The Overall Objective is to enhance climate change adaptation and resilience within ten Pacific Island countries. The Specific Objective is to strengthen the implementation of sector-based, but integrated, climate change and disaster risk management strategies and plans. The action will assist ten Pacific SIDS to address climate change impacts at the national, sub-national and community levels in a sustainable manner and for specific sectors. The activities will adopt a gender-sensitive and rights-based approach throughout.
Output 1: Climate and disaster risk information, knowledge management, monitoring and strategic planning capacities strengthened at national and regional levels. (Delivery led by SPREP). Short title: Strengthen strategic planning at national levels Impact assessment of climate change adaptation interventions, several years after their completion, is major gap in the Pacific countries. (Standard end-of-project evaluations focus almost entirely on outputs and are usually conducted around the project end-date). Yet without information about longer-term impact, Pacific nations remain in a cycle of designing and executing new adaptation initiatives which in many cases do not fulfil their hoped-for long-term potential. Pacific countries need an objective impact assessment of past interventions so as to move their planning horizons from the short-term project approach to the medium term (10+ years) sector resilient approach. This output will focus particularly on supporting national decision making such that new climate change adaptation interventions are designed and implemented with sustainability at the forefront of the process. Collaborating closely with three countries (likely, Fiji, Tonga and Tuvalu), representing different conditions in Melanesia and Polynesia, and utilising an information and knowledge management approach, an impact methodology will be designed and tested. To do this, information on past adaptation interventions completed in the past 5-years will be compiled. A methodology will then be developed to assess the impacts of these past interventions. Key criteria for assessing past interventions include (i) effectiveness, (ii) sustainable social and behavioural changes (e.g. enhanced decision making skills for women and vulnerable groups), (iii) successful lessons and practices, and (iv) overall sustainability of completed climate change adaptation interventions. The impact methodology will be tested and finalised. The methodology will then be integrated into a user-friendly database module which can be added to existing national climate change portals. Training will be provided so that countries can install, populate and customise the impacts database and apply it to inform their national prioritisation and decision making. The other countries taking part in this Action will be involved in training activities and information sharing sessions at regional meetings. Besides supporting longer-term national decision making, the impact databases will also contribute to national and regional baselines on which to assess the FRDP and to the GCCA+ lessons learnt. Output 2: Planning and decision making capacities to address climate change and disaster risks at sub-national and community level strengthened, applying participatory, gender-sensitive and rightsbased approaches. (Delivery led by USP). Short title: Enhance the capacity of sub-national government stakeholders to build resilient communities This output will focus particularly on building capacity in resilient development for local area stakeholders, starting with those residing in the geographical areas selected by the countries in Output 3. Emphasis will be placed on the sub-national, state, provincial and local island government levels. Here the use of local languages is often a pre-requisite for developing capacity. Following a diagnostic assessment of training needs in climate and disaster risk, outreach and awareness-raising activities, accredited training in resilience will be delivered in local languages to representatives from the subnational governance level and the community level. Key change agents will be identified for more advanced training. Sub national and local area development plans will be reviewed and entry points for climate and disaster risk identified. Where local area planning review schedules permit, the plans will be updated to include climate and disaster risk resilience. Activities in this output will be delivered in collaboration with Output 3, and together with all three outputs will adopt a gender-sensitive, rightsbased approach, involving particularly vulnerable individuals, such as migrants, landless people, individuals with disabilities, women, and men outside of traditional power-based positions. Output 3: Strategic and local interventions for climate change adaptation and mainstreaming scaled up in up to five sectors. (Delivery led by SPC). Short title: Scale up resilient development measures in specific sectors Focusing on sectors where adaptation work has already taken place and building on that existing work will help countries concentrate on sector resilience and moving to a long term planning horizon for that sector. Together with output 1, this output will help countries move away from the present ad hoc system for selecting adaptation project sites and sectors, towards a more informed decision making process for sustainable and resilient development. During the GCCA: PSIS project, countries selected the following sectors for climate change adaptation demonstration projects: agriculture, coastal resources (fisheries); coastal management, health and water. During the preparation of this Action, early in 2017, countries were consulted as to the potential sectors for focus under GCCA+ SUPA. Whilst indicating some preliminary sector choices, they all expressed a need for more in-depth consultation once this Action commenced. During the start of the Inception Phase a regional meeting will be held to discuss and agree on specific criteria for scaling-up. Scaling-up a structural measure might include (i) enhancement e.g. strengthening a measure to withstand a category 3-5 cyclone; (ii) expansion e.g. increasing the measure to protect a longer length of coast; (iii) replication e.g. implementing a successful measure in a different location; and (iv) addition of a new complementary approach such as combining an ecosystem-based approach with an agricultural measure. Each country will then undertake widespread national consultations to (i) confirm their sector focus; (ii) define and select the existing measures for scaling-up in their selected sector and (iii) the geographical focus. Then, using a participatory, gender-sensitive and rights-based approach at the local area level, more detailed consultations with communities, local area governments and whenever relevant with the private sector will be held to design and implement tangible on-the-ground measures that address the scaling-up criteria. Ecosystem based approaches will be among the measures considered. Women and vulnerable groups will be empowered to conceptualise, design and implement parallel on-the-ground measures. Training in the monitoring and maintenance of the scaled-up measures will be provided and with the long term goal to ensure that such activities are supported by line items in national and sector budgets. Reviewing, analysing and addressing gaps in sector policies, plans and budgets will be part of this output and also contribute to strengthening the resilience of the sector. Outputs 2 and 3 will be carefully coordinated so that the activities in output 2 can be implemented once the countries have confirmed their sectors, the projects to be scaled up and the geographical areas of focus.