Building local disaster resilience is a matter of survival for the people of Tokelau, whose sole link to the rest of the world is a fortnightly boat service that takes 24 hours to their nearest neighbor, Samoa.
The small islands of the Pacific continue to lead the world in efforts to unite climate change and disaster risk reduction initiatives under one development agenda. “Sustainable development for us is a matter of national security,” said Mr David Sheppard, the Director General of the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), before a packed forum entitled ‘Meeting the sustainability challenge in the post-2015 era: A vision for resilient nations, large and small’. “We are working to protect people and the environment and that means we have to support livelihoods in a way that reinforces sustainable development and builds on the rich tradition of human settlement in the Pacific. There are many examples of Pacific solutions being tailored for Pacific problems.”
Amidst growing concerns about drought crises in some of the Small Island Developing States (SIDS) of the Pacific, the Government of Tuvalu today began a three-week nationwide needs assessment of water, agriculture and health facilities.