The German Agency for Technical Cooperation (GTZ) has officially announced an extended regional programme – Coping with Climate Change in the Pacific Island Region, which will be funded until 2015.
In making the announcement at the fourth regional meeting of Heads of Agriculture and Forestry Services (HOAFS) in Nadi, Fiji Islands, GTZ Programme Director and Senior Adviser, Dr Hermann Fickinger said that in late 2009 the German government decided to enhance its engagement with the Pacific and pledged additional funds to the regional programme. It has allocated another EUR 10 million to the already existing SPC/GTZ regional programme Adaptation to Climate Change in the Pacific Island Region, bringing the overall German financing to EUR 14.2 million.
‘As a result, the programme will also include Federate States of Micronesia, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands and Tuvalu and extend its thematic focus to marine resources, sustainable energy management and tourism and climate change,’ Dr Fickinger said.
Under the new programme the focus will be land-based natural resources, marine resources, tourism, and sustainable energy.
The programme maintains the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) as the primary implementation partner and emphasises strong cooperation with the Secretariat of the Pacific Environment Programme (SPREP).
The overall objective of the extended programme is to strengthen the capacities of regional organisations in the Pacific Island region and their member states to cope with the adverse effects of and reduce their contribution to climate change.
The extended regional programme will continue the basic multi-level approach being implemented under the current regional project.
‘This means strengthening regional partner institutions at national and subnational levels. Due to insufficient human and financial resources – in both larger countries and small island states – the regional component is a critical element for long term sustainable development. The thematic scope has been widened to include adaptation and mitigation issues,’ Dr Fickinger said.
The existing project has an exclusive focus on land based natural resources, and therefore the project has been implemented by SPC’s Land Resources Division in Suva, Fiji Islands.
Land based management will play still a very important role in the extended project.
However, marine based resources and functions of the Pacific Islands Applied Geoscience Commission (SOPAC) that are being integrated into SPC will be important future components.
The HOAFs meeting heard that over coming decades, climate change will remain one of the key topics in the Pacific at the political level as well as at the community level, and the extended regional programme will continue to strengthen the capacities of Pacific Island countries and regional organisations to better cope with climate change through its significant funding, its long term perspective and its strong partnerships within the region and the respective countries.
For more information please contact LRD Helpdesk contact (