The Pacific experience in developing policy and legislation on disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation

Report
from UN International Strategy for Disaster Reduction
Published on 18 Jul 2013 View Original

CHAPTER 1

Introduction

1.1 SCOPE OF THE STUDY AND ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

The purpose of this study is to contribute to the process towards developing the Pacific integrated regional strategy for disaster risk management and climate change by 2015, and the global consultations for a post-2015 framework for disaster risk reduction. It also aims to contribute to the discussions held at the 2013 Joint Meeting of the Pacific Platform for Disaster Risk Management and the Pacific Climate Change Round Table.

Since the global consultations were initiated in 2012, the inter-linkages between disaster risk reduction (DRR) and climate change adaptation (CCA) have been identified as a priority issue for the global post-2015 framework for disaster risk reduction. The consultation process will benefit from further input from the Pacific region where the high level of climate-related risks and the likelihood that these will increase substantially in the future, have made DRR and CCA key policy goals.

Taking into account the strong basis of learning the Pacific offers in the area of DRR-CCA, this study explores and aims to unpack the drivers and process to develop Joint National Action Plans on Disaster Risk Management and Climate Change (JNAPs), primary DRM legislation, and sustainable development plans addressing DRR and CCA in selected Pacific island countries (PICs). It also briefly discusses the experiences so far in the implementation of these instruments. The three PICs included in this study are Cook Islands, Solomon Islands and Tonga. This desk study was supported by phone discussions with national and regional focal points (Annex 1). The list of questions guiding the discussions can be found in Annex 2.

It is also to be noted that the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) has commissioned a review to look at the development and implementation process of the JNAPs in the region focusing especially on Tonga and Cook Islands. The aim of the review is to identify lessons learnt during the JNAP development and implementation processes, and areas of the development and the implementation process for further strengthening.

This study conducted for UNISDR by Ms. Laura Niskanen would not have been possible without the time, knowledge and experience offered by the national disaster risk management and climate change officials in the Cook Islands, Solomon Islands and Tonga. Equally important has been the support provided by the regional focal points in the SOPAC Division of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC), the Secretariat of the Pacific Environment Programme (SPREP) and World Bank, Solomon Islands. A special thank you is extended to Mr. Mosese Sikivou from the SOPAC Division of SPC, Mr. Jerry Velasquez, Mr. Timothy Wilcox, Ms. Madhavi Ariyabandu and Mr. Marco Toscano-Rivalta from UNISDR for guidance provided to this study. UNISDR appreciates and acknowledges all the contributions.