The Minister of Mines, Energy and Rural Electrification (MMERE) has welcomed a Climate Change, Water Adaptation report presented by the Solomon Islands Water Sector Adaptation Project (SIWSAP) early this week.
The report presents key findings, recommendations and lessons learnt from a climate change vulnerability assessment on water, sanitation and hygiene carried out in six communities in the country.
Minister David Day Pacha said the project has fulfilled part of the DCC Government’s development policy which promotes economic growth in the rural areas with strong emphasis on sustainable utilization and conservation of natural resources, including water, its protection and combating the adverse effects of climate change.
The DCC Government is committed to protecting resources such as water from destruction and contamination caused by natural and man-made disasters.
“Similarly, affected communities have to travel distances to find water during drought and at times water sources are very poor and contaminated and as a result it give rise to health issues,” Minister Pacha said.
Sea level rise and salinity has added more stress to low laying communities who survived on underground water as saltwater intrusion contaminates their only water source.
The Government is pleased that the project is taking the lead in improving the resilience of water resources, improve health, sanitation and quality of life so that livelihoods in targeted vulnerable areas can be enhanced and sustained amidst growing threats of climate change impacts.
Already 69 water tanks and 9 groundwater wells with new hand pumps have been installed at all project sites.
Between August 2015 and June 2016, the project, together with the Water Resources and Climate Change Divisions embarked on a series of climate change vulnerability assessments and adaptation planning workshops in the focused communities.
SIWSAP has now completed this process and finally drafted six water-sector climate change vulnerability assessments and currently compiling six adaptation planning documents.
Each community has now prioritized its adaptation options to implement based on these consultation documents.
SIWSAP is funded by the Global Environment Facility and implemented by the Water Resources Division of Ministry of Mines, Energy and Rural Electrification with technical support from the United Nations Development Programme Solomon Islands Country Office.
Source: Press Release, Government Communications Unit