Dominica is well on its way to building resilience against the negative impact of climate change.
In December 2013, Government announced that Dominica had received $103-million from the World Bank’s Climate Investment Fund to implement Government’s Strategic Programme for Climate Resilience (SPCR).
That fund is part soft loan and part grant.
Dominica is one of six nations in the region to pilot the World Bank’s Programme for Climate Resilience.
This Pilot Programme for Climate Resilience or PPCR assists developing countries to integrate climate resilience with development planning, building on national adaptation programmes of action and other existing efforts.
GIS News spoke with Colin Guiste, Project Coordinator, to get details of the project and establish Dominica’s progress with implementation.
Guiste explained that the project will see the implementation of four major components: civil works; data management; emergency contingency response, and the general management of the project.
The civil works aspect involves the rehabilitation of four major and most vulnerable road networks on the island: Pond Case to Bois Diable; Bois Diable to Castle Bruce; Castle Bruce to Petite Soufriere and Castle Bruce to Hatton Garden through the Kalinago Territory.
“We expect to undertake some slope stabilization in areas where we expect landslides,” he said.
He added that guard rails will be erected and storm drains constructed based on feasibility studies. Dated culverts will also be replaced by capacity-appropriate ones and bridges constructed in some areas.
Guiste explains that the terms of references and feasibility studies are still being developed for submission and approval by the World Bank before physical work can begin.
The Project Coordinator also detailed the data management aspect of the project.
He said a consultant was on island in January 2015 to assess Dominica’s capacity to process meteorological data.
This consultant is expected on island again in March to present the findings and propose solutions.
The third component, the emergency contingency response plan, involves creating a list of suppliers of key items that will help Dominica quickly recover after a major disaster.
These items include construction equipment, building material and medical supplies.
Guiste informed that key items and suppliers have been identified and the project management team is in the process of completing this list.
The Project Coordinator anticipates that major physical work will begin by 2016.
The project which began in August 2014 will last for six years.
The process for attracting funding commenced with the development of Government’s Strategic Programme for Climate Resilience.
This plan, developed by the Ministry of Environment, headed by Hon. Dr. Kenneth Darroux, was presented to the World Bank in 2012. The plan serves as a blueprint to deal with climate change nationally.
Hon. Darroux says, “The entire plan may seem costly and unnecessary but the issue of climate change should be top priority for Small Island Developing States like Dominica.”