Tropical Cyclone Ian - Jan 2014
Tropical Cyclone Ian passed east of Tonga's Vava’u group (population 15,000) in the morning of 11 Jan 2014 before the eye passed directly over Ha'apai (population 6,600) in the afternoon. The Prime Minister declared a state of emergency for Vava’u and Ha’apai the same day. There was one confirmed death, 14 injuries, and extensive damage to houses, infrastructure and agriculture across the northeast islands of Ha’apai. Over 50 per cent of the 1,130 affected buildings in Ha’apai were destroyed, with 34 per cent suffering major damage. Around 2,335 people sought shelter in 51 formal and informal shelters. On 21 Jan, the Government accepted international assistance from the Pacific Humanitarian Team. (OCHA, 23 Jan 2014)
The Government of Tonga developed a Response Plan with its humanitarian and development partners with a three month time frame. Based on the needs identified, priority areas of the response are in shelter, water, food security, education and safety and protection. The plan aims to facilitate coordination of the humanitarian response and early recovery by documenting cluster response plans and identifying gaps/requirements for response. The immediate requirements over the next three months are TOP 28.4 million of which TOP 23.7 million remains unmet. The total requirements over the next 12-18 months including immediate, recovery and initial reconstruction needs identified are TOP 90.2 million of which TOP 83.4 million remains unmet.
Maps & Infographics
The World Bank says it is working closely with Tonga's government to investigate missing cyclone funding worth over 600-thousand US dollars.
Read more on Radio New Zealand International
GFDRR supports governments in designing financial protection strategies and instruments to respond to natural disasters. The Disaster Risk Financing and Insurance Program (DRFIP) leads the dialogue on financial resilience as a component of the World Bank’s support to countries in better managing disasters and climate shocks. The initiative connects financial expertise with risk management across many sectors, bringing countries comprehensive solutions and helping them to become more effective in managing their own risk.
More Pacific countries will now able to get immediate cash injections after major disasters under the latest developments under a Pacific disaster risk insurance facility.
Read more on Radio New Zealand International
The Department of National Emergency Management Office marked the International Day for Disaster Reduction under the theme ‘Live to Tell’ at the Digicel Square this morning.
The Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of MEIDECC, Hon. Siaosi Sovaleni in his keynote address emphasized what Tonga has done to improve its state of awareness and preparations in regard to natural disasters.
1st April 2016 The Government of Japan and the Tonga Red Cross celebrated a new constructed multipurpose training center in Ha’apai on Wednesday.
The Japanese Ambassador to Tonga, His Excellency Mr. Yukio Numata attended the handover ceremony in Ha’apai along with the Governor of Ha’apai Hon. Mo’ale Finau, Secretary General of Tonga Red Cross Society Mr. Sione Taumoefolau and the Deputy CEO for the Ministry of Finance Natalia Latu.
HA’APAI, TONGA – The Prime Minister of Tonga, ʻAkilisi Pōhiva, Asian Development Bank (ADB) Vice-President, Stephen P. Groff, and New Zealand High Commissioner to Tonga, Sarah Walsh, today participated in an opening ceremony and formal handover of schools rebuilt and refurbished after they were damaged by Cyclone Ian in 2014.
3rd February 2016 Tonga will be benefit from state-of the art techniques that allow them to assess risks from natural disasters such as tropical cyclones and earthquakes under the assistance provided under the joint Pacific Catastrophe Risk Assessment and Financing Initiative (PCRAFI) .
PCRAFI assists participants from line Ministries, especially the Ministry of Finance and the National Emergency Management Office (NEMO), in risk modelling and risk profiling.
That will help government draw up risk reduction measures.
Some homes that have been re-built in central Tonga following Cyclone Ian may have to be demolished because they didn't meet certain criteria.
Read the full article on Radio New Zealand International.
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:
Men, women, boys and girls face different risks and have different priorities and needs in humanitarian settings. Pacific women are also subject to pre-existing and systemic inequalities, which impede their ability to survive and recover from disasters. These include high levels of gender-based violence, barriers to women’s meaningful representation in decision-making forums, formal and informal obstacles to women’s access to productive resources and information, and deficiencies in essential service provision for vulnerable groups.
According to the World Risk Index 2014, the Pacific has four (Vanuatu, Tonga, Solomon Islands and Papua New Guinea) of the top ten countries at greatest risk. Vanuatu is at the top of the list. In previous years, Fiji was also included among the top ten.
The Pacific Region had nine major emergencies between November 2013 and June 2014.The 2014 - 2015 cyclone season has been one of the most active in terms of the number and intensity of cyclones, as well as the length of season. A total of 9 cyclones were observed with five of these having significant humanitarian consequences.
10 june 2015 A team of Tonga Power staff, visited Ha’apai and donated a total of 620 solar lanterns to families in ‘Uiha, Ha’ano, Mo’unga’one and Lofanga.
Sione Pongi, Tonga Power’s Project Manager and Tonga Power’s Project Engineer, Viliami Ongosia have been managing the distribution of the technology as well as explaining its proper use.
02 June 2015 Official handover of disaster equipment received under the Non-project Grant Aid (NPGA) for the Provision of Japanese SME’s Products 2013 at the NEMO office.
Tonga has the world’s third highest level of risk to disasters,with the effects of climate change increasing their frequency and intensity. This poses serious threats to people, the environment and livelihoods in Tonga - especially for communities on the outer islands who are often most vulnerable to climate change and disasters.
20 May, 2015, Nukualofa, Tonga - Understanding the role of the Meteorological Service and the terminology used when sharing information is at the core of training that opened in Tonga today.
With the changing weather patterns and climate, the role of the weather in the day to day activities of Pacific island communities is crucial. This is the basis for work underway to help Met Services across the region to become better communicators, and for communities to be better informed.
The reconstruction and renovation of primary schools in the Tongan islands of Ha'apai has finally begun more than a year after Cyclone Ian devastated the area.
Read more on Radio New Zealand International.
23 April 2015 The Governor of Ha’apai, Hon Mo’ale Finau was the guest of honour in the handing over ceremony of six (6) completed two-room cyclone houses on Saturday 7th of March, 2015 at ‘Uiha, Ha’apai.
24 April 2015 TONGAN On Wednesday 22 April 2015, contract for reconstruction and renovation of the Government Primary Schools in the isalands of Mo'unga'one, Ha'ano, Lofanga and 'Uiha were signed betweeen Ministry of Infrastructure (MOI) and the three selected contractors.