The University of the South Pacific (USP) recently hosted a two-day Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EbA) tool training in Nadi, Fiji from May 16th to 17th, 2023. Funded by the European Union’s Intra-ACP GCCA+ Pacific Adaptation to Climate Change and Resilience Building (PACRES) programme, under the USP Component.
The purpose of the training is to enhance knowledge and skills related to EbA, which is a comprehensive approach to adaptation planning that aims to utilize healthy ecosystems and biodiversity to strengthen social and ecological resilience.
Mr. Semi Qamese, Project Manager of the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), facilitated the training, which focuses on several key objectives related to climate change and disaster risk management.
“We are pleased to offer this user-friendly tool specifically designed for planners in our Pacific countries. The goal is to provide guidance on the types of EbA interventions that can be considered based on different local circumstances and needs,” stated Mr. Qamese.
The EbA tool was created by the Pacific for the Pacific and was first trialed at last year’s PACRES Steering Committee Meeting in Nadi, Fiji, before being officially launched at last year’s United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Conference of Parties (COP27) in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt.
The training concentrated on case studies and scenarios from across the Pacific region, with the goal of increasing capacity and promoting sustainable development practices that improve climate change resilience and disaster risk management in Pacific Island countries.
Communities can better prepare for and respond to the challenges posed by climate change and natural disasters by incorporating these strategies into development plans and implementing ecosystem-based adaptation approaches. The Pacific Ecosystem-based Adaptation
Decision Support Tool (Pacific EbA tool) can help Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EbA) initiatives in the Pacific by providing guidance on various types of EbA interventions that can be implemented while taking into account different local conditions and requirements across the region.
The Pacific EbA tool has been specifically designed to cater to the needs of planners at the national, subnational, and local levels in the region. It does not require the use of extensive datasets but instead employs four guiding questions to identify potential EbA options. The tool provides links to relevant information, enabling planners to initiate the process of scoping and selecting potential EbA options, rather than offering detailed planning and design information.
The USP PACRES Research Community Officers (RCOs) and change agents from Timor-Leste, the Solomon Islands, Papua New Guinea, and Fiji attended the two-day training.
Using the EbA tool, the RCOs presented scenarios, invitations, and implementation strategies on PACRES community sites. Their presentation included community activities, projected results, and recommendations derived from the EbA tool.
The USP component of the PACRES program, which is funded by the European Union to support adaptation to climate change and resilience building in the Pacific region, is being carried out in collaboration with the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), the leading agency, as well as the Pacific Community (SPC) and the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (PIFS).