In a recent article published in “Pacific Island Report” of the University of Hawaii’s Pacific Islands Development Program, SC member S.H.M. Fakhruddin, goes beyond the core results of the Pacific Adaptation Climate Change (PACC) project sponsored by the Australian Government, and focuses instead on the impacts of water resources due to climate change.
From the Abstract: “Natural disasters have a significant impact in the Pacific Islands. Between 1950 and 2004, more than 200 disasters resulted in more than 1700 fatalities and losses amounting to USD 6.5 billion. Given their small populations and economies, such losses are traumatic to Pacific Island countries. Tonga, one of 52 Small Island Developing States (SIDS), is highly susceptible to the impacts of climate change and disasters due principally to its geographical, geological, and socio–economic characteristics. Climate change and natural disasters pose severe adverse threats on the environment, the people of Tonga, and their livelihoods. Scientific findings revealed that these impacts would be exacerbated by future climate change. The Government of Tonga has acknowledged these risks to the sustainable development of the country and has hence considered these issues as high priorities in its National Strategic Planning Framework.” The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Australian Government Pacific Adaptation Climate Change (PACC) project have assisted to increase the resilience of the water resources management sector in Tonga and to enhance adaptive capacity of villages, communities and socio–economic activities to climate change and sea level rise”.