At least four million people in the Pacific face hunger, water shortages and risk of disease this year and next due to droughts and erratic rains, influenced by climate change and the likely development of a ‘super El Niño’.
Super El Niño and climate change cause crop failures putting millions at risk of hunger
At least ten million poor people face hunger this year and next due to both droughts and erratic rains influenced by climate change and the likely development of a ‘super El Niño’.
SUAVE, Fiji, 14 September 2015 - The United Nations is urging Pacific Islanders and their governments to prepare now for a looming El Niño emergency with the potential to affect more than four million people.
“Climatologists are now unanimous in predicting that we are heading for a strong to severe El Niño event in the coming months. Some modelling is now suggesting this El Niño could be as severe as the event in 1997/98 which is the worst on record and brought severe drought to PNG and Fiji,” United Nations Resident Coordinator, Osnat Lubrani said.
The Marshall Islands is on alert for what authorities there say could be the worst drought for more than a decade.
Read the full article on Radio New Zealand International.
The United Nations is urging Pacific Islanders and their governments to prepare now for a looming El Niño emergency with the potential to affect more than four million people.
“Climatologists are now unanimous in predicting that we are heading for a strong to severe El Niño event in the coming months. Some modelling is now suggesting this El Niño could be as severe as the event in 1997/98 which is the worst on record and brought drought to countries including Papua New Guinea and Fiji,” United Nations Resident Coordinator, Osnat Lubrani said.
The special needs of outer island communities must be considered in the planning and design of climate change adaptation projects.
That was a clear message stressed by participants at the Global Climate Change Alliance: Pacific Small Islands States (GCCA: PSIS) project’s ‘lessons learnt’ meeting that recently concluded in Yap State in the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM).
Each year natural and climate change induced disasters displace tens of millions of people across the globe, mostly within their own country but there have been circumstances when people displaced by disasters have had to seek shelter by crossing international borders. Human mobility and cross-border displacement is recognised as a keyhumanitarian issue in this day in age.
The following syndromes have been flagged:
- Acute Fever and Rash: Palau
- Diarrhoea: French Polynesia, Kiribati, Tonga
- Influenza-Like illness: Nauru, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Solomon Islands, Tonga
- Prolonged Fever: Tonga
Outbreak ongoing in French Polynesia with two deaths ( one 5 months old and one 7 months old) – rotavirus has been isolated. The weekly number of cases is increasing. As of week ending 30 August, 47% of the cases were in children less than 4 years of age.
Floods and landslides affected over 1.3 million people, including 297,000 households displaced in Jul and Aug, according to Government reports. At least 106 people are confirmed dead. The Government, supported by local organisations, UN and INGOs, continues to lead the response, including clean-up, search and rescue and provision of relief assistance.
1.3 million people affected
The following syndromes have been flagged:
- Influenza-like illness: Nauru, New Zealand
- Cook Islands have reported a total of 763 cases since October 2014, including 5 new cases in the week ending on 2 August 2015.
Outbreaks are occurring in American Samoa (dengue serotype-3) and Samoa (dengue serotype-3).
This issue of the Pacific Economic Monitor updates the 2015 and 2016 GDP growth and inflation projections for ADB's Pacific developing member countries. The policy briefs included in this issue focus on disasters in the Pacific.
Highlights from this issue of the Pacific Economic Monitor include the following:
24 July 2015: The First Pacific Ministerial Meeting on Meteorology held here in Nuku’alofa today has adopted 25 points they believe will ensure that National Meteorological and Hydrological Services (NMHSs) have the necessary capacity to support sustainable development in the region.
for Cost-Effective and Sustainable Disaster Risk Finance Solutions in the Pacific
This map shows the average amount of precipitation falling in a year, based on approximately 50 years of data. The figures shown do not therefore represent the amount of precipitation that may occur in any given year.
Temperatures in the Asia-Pacific region can go very high with central India reaching 50oC or more. The Tibetan plateau rarely exceeds 20oC because of its high elevation.
These temperatures are based on average highs over a period of approximately 50 years. Maximum temperatures in the region may therefore be from different months of the year and a temperature in any given location may exceed these maximums.
Köppen-Geiger Climate Classification
The highly referenced climate classification map of Wladimir Köppen was published for the first time in 1900 and updated in its latest version by Rudolf Geiger in 1961.
Climate classification is applied to a broad range of topics in climate and climate change research as well as in physical geography, hydrology, agriculture, biology and educational aspects.
The Human Footprint
Human influence on the earth’s land surface is a global driver of ecological processes on the planet, en par with climatic trends, geological forces and astronomical variations. The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) and the Center for International Earth Science Information Network (CIESIN) at Columbia University joined together to systematically map and measure the human influence on the earth’s land surface today.