Friday, April 15, 2011

Billions of Climate funds still immobile

From: Taimi Media Network

Representatives of ten Pacific governments are in Palau to discuss strategies for greater access to international funds committed to Climate Change adaptation today in Palau.

Rich countries promised to mobilising a $10 billion a year ‘Fast Start’ program between 2010 and 2012 to help buffer the poorest countries from the effects of global warming, in the Climate Summit of 2009 in Copenhagen.

The funds have not really reached communities that need them, especially in the Pacific.

The Director of the South Pacific’s Regional Environment Program (SPREP) David Sheppard says things are moving as expected.

“The delivery of these funds have been slower than anticipated,” he said to Tonga Chronicle.

He said the overarching priority is to ensure adequate finance are available to implement practical and relevant actions according to national priorities.

A whopping $100 billion was set as a “goal” for developed countries to provide per year by 2020 to support developing countries climate change efforts, while the developing nations including most of the Pacific islands, were committed to provide $30 billion for adaptation and mitigation.

Tonga is represented in Palau by Director of Climate Change Department ‘Asipeli Palaki and an official from the Finance Ministry, amongst representatives from Fiji, Federated States of Micronesia, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Palau, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tuvalu, and Vanuatu as well as representatives of regional agencies and civil society organizations.

Tonga’s initiatives in climate change adaptation include water supply systems for the western side of Tongatapu, which experiences significant saltwater infiltration and projected to worsen as sea levels rise.

According to the National Coordinator for Tonga’s “Pacific Adaptation to Climate Change” Project, Paula Taufa says because of close proximity to the ocean.

“There is severe saltwater infiltration of the groundwater supply,” some water pumps have been abandoned, he told the Tonga Chronicle.

While the Pacific has the least contribution to global warming and sea level rise (about 0.03% of global greenhouse gas emissions), it will be the first and worst hit by the effects of climate change and sea level rise, which is reason behind greater focus on adaptation rather than mitigation.

“While globally there are promises of substantial resources to respond to the impact of climate change, Pacific island countries would benefit from up-to-date knowledge and tools on how to access and use these funds,” stated Toily Kurbanov Deputy Resident Representative for the United Nations Development Programme.

The two-day workshop, organized by the UNDP, complements other regional efforts to access and effectively deliver climate change adaptation initiatives.

“Pacific leaders have consistently identified Climate Change as the greatest challenge facing Pacific Island Countries, underlining the vulnerability of Pacific Islands and the need for urgent action,” stated Sheppard in a presentation to a Commonwealth High Level Meeting on Climate Finance in Canberra earlier this year.

- By Tevita Motulalo

Thursday, April 14, 2011

India to Map Its Coastal Hazard Line With SDAP

From: ABC Live

Written by Dinesh Singh Rawat

New Delhi (ABC Live): Indian Environment and Forests ministry has signed an agreement with The Survey of India to map, delineate and demarcate the hazardline along India's 7 km wide coastal belt.

It is to mention that MoEF has signed The Memorandum of Understanding with Survey of India for Integrated Coastal Zone Management Project funded by the World Bank

The hazard line is a composite line of the shoreline change (including sea level rise) due to climate change, tides and waves. The total cost of this survey is projected at Rs.125 crore.

This initiative of the MoEF forms a critical part of its responsibilities towards the planned

Management of the country's coastal zone. Under this World Bank assisted project, the hazard fine for the mainland coast of India will be mapped, delineated and demarcated on the ground over a period of five years.

This will include the collection and presentation o f data, identify flood lines over the last 4o years (which includes sea level rise impacts), and a prediction of erosions to take place over the next 1oo years.

Technology called Stereo Digital Aerial Photography (SDAP) will be used to map the

Coastline.

Open tenders for SDAP were' invited and after following all due procedures laid down by the World Bank National Competent Bidding (NCB) tender and Government of India, M/s IIC, Hyderabad in joint venture with M/s AAM Pty Limited, Australia was selected to undertake the project.

For the purpose of SDAP, the Indian mainland coastline has been divided into eight blocks, namely,

  1. The Indo-Pakistan border to Somnath in Gujarat;
  2. Somnath to Uhls River in Maharashtra
  3. Ulhas River to Sharavathi River in Karnataka
  4. Sharavathi River to Cape Comoran in Tamil Nadu
  5. Cape Comoran to Ponniyur River in Tamil Nadu
  6. Ponniyur River to Krishna River in Andhra Pradesh
  7. Krishna River to Chhatrapur in Orissa
  8. Chhatrapur to Indo-Bangladesh Border in West Bengal.

The SDAP will be completed within an estimated fifteen months depending upon the weather. Based on this, maps will be prepared after ground verification; pillars will be erected demarcating the hazard line.