SPC Geoscience Division

Lessons learned from Winston

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30 May 2016, Labasa

TC-WinstonThe devastation Tropical Cyclone Winston unleashed on Fiji is still a reality for many across the country.

To explore how Fiji’s National Disaster Management Office (NDMO) responded, and what could be improved upon for next time, a series of Lessons Learned Workshops will be held over the next four weeks, beginning in the Northern Division of Fiji today.

Parts of the Northern Division of the country were badly affected, with many communities in the direct path of Cyclone Winston, the strongest recorded cyclone in the Southern Hemisphere struck land on 20 February.

The Lessons Learned Workshops are funded by the €19.37 million (FJD 45 million) ACP-European Union Building Safety and Resilience in the Pacific Project implemented by the Pacific Community (SPC).

Last Updated on Thursday, 16 June 2016 16:31 Read more...
 

Advancing Pacific Ocean data networks and applications

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Ocean science experts from the Pacific Community (SPC) and the Institute of Research for Development (IRD) are among those convening in Noumea this week to build understanding of ocean processes, ocean observations and data applications, and advance the design of a Pacific Islands ocean observation network.

The Pacific Islands Training Workshop on Ocean Observations and Data Applications, being held at the IRD offices, will contribute to increasing the capability within the Pacific region to collect, analyse, and communicate oceanographic data across a number of sectors, such as meteorology and climate services, fisheries, marine trade and tourism.

The workshop is organised by the Joint World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) and Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) Technical Commission for Oceanography and Marine Meteorology (JCOMM) in coordination with IRD, SPC and the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Program (SPREP).

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EU will provide FJ$10 million through SPC towards recovery and rehabilitation after Cyclone Winston

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The European Union (EU) will provide an initial FJ$ 10 million through the Pacific Community (SPC) to complement the Fijian Government's efforts in relief, recovery and rehabilitation following the devastation caused by Tropical Cyclone Winston.

The funds will immediately be made available from EU-SPC projects for communities and businesses in the most severely affected regions of Fiji.

"The FJ$10M is a direct, practical short term response to the needs of Fijian citizens in the affected areas", says EU Ambassador for the Pacific Andrew Jacobs. "The EU and SPC have joined forces to identify other resources, whether it is through an existing joint programme or a new source that could be expedited and channelled towards re-building peoples' lives".

Last Updated on Tuesday, 08 March 2016 14:33 Read more...
 

Building Pacific capacities to promote and facilitate marine scientific research

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14 December 2015, Busan - Marine science and marine scientific research play a critical role in the sustainable development of the oceans, seas and their resources.

This is consistently recognised by the United Nations General Assembly in its annual resolutions on oceans and the law of the sea, the 2012 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development and by the Small Island Developing States Accelerated Modalities of Action (SAMOA) Pathway adopted in 2014.

Marine scientific research is also at the core of the ‘2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development’ and the Sustainable Development Goal 14a officially adopted by the General Assembly in September 2015.

To address this, the Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea of the United Nations Office of Legal Affairs (DOALOS) and the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (IOC-UNESCO), in partnership with the Pacific Community (SPC) European Union supported Deep Sea Minerals Project and the Korea Maritime Institute (KMI), recently organised a first of its kind training workshop for Pacific Small Island Developing States government officials and scientists in Busan, Republic of Korea.

Last Updated on Saturday, 26 December 2015 17:25 Read more...
 

Advancing the Pacific development agenda with smarter maps

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Suva, Fiji – Over 300 participants from about 30 countries will converge in Suva, Fiji next week to discuss advancements in Geographic Information Systems and Remote Sensing (GIS/RS) applications and their relevance to the management of resources in small Pacific Island countries and territories.

 

Bridging Information Gaps by Creating Smarter Maps’ is the theme of the conference jointly organised by the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC)

Last Updated on Wednesday, 13 April 2016 16:39 Read more...
 

Cyclone Winston survey sets new baseline for damage data

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1 April 2016, Suva

Coastal hazard experts from the Pacific Community (SPC) have surveyed wind and wave damage from tropical cyclone Winston in more than 40 communities across the provinces of Bua, Cakaudrove, and Lomaiviti in Fiji last week, producing detailed data that will have immediate and long-term benefits for Fiji and the region.

As part of SPC’s assistance to the Government of Fiji following the devastating category 5 cyclone, two teams of oceanographers and damage assessment specialists designed and carried out simultaneous surveys, covering roughly 250 km of coastline over five days.

Planned in collaboration with Fiji’s National Disaster Management Office (NDMO) and Mineral Resource Department and with support from the World Bank, the surveys assessed building damage, the status of water and sanitation, and the extent of coastal inundation on the island of Ovalau and the southern coast of Vanua Levu.

Last Updated on Friday, 01 April 2016 11:49 Read more...
 

‘Pacific Community’ name adopted

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1 February 2016, Noumea

Expect to see and hear a lot more about the Pacific Community.

This follows the decision that the ‘Secretariat of the Pacific Community’ should be known simply by its formal name, the ‘Pacific Community’.

“By adopting the ‘Pacific Community’ as our public name we’re essentially going back to the future, as this was the legal name chosen by our members back in 1997, replacing the ‘South Pacific Commission’ title,” the Pacific Community Director-General, Dr Colin Tukuitonga, said.

“Reverting to our organisation’s formal name reflects the Pacific Community’s inclusive mandate and broad Pacific region coverage, and promotes greater ownership by our 26 country and territory members, beyond the secretariat.

Last Updated on Thursday, 04 February 2016 12:23 Read more...
 

Australia and Pacific Islands cooperate to update maritime boundaries in world’s largest ocean

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4 December 2015, SydneyPacific Representatives of 12 Pacific Island countries are meeting in Sydney this week with maritime experts from Australia and the Pacific Community (SPC) to negotiate maritime boundary agreements and refine their claims to areas of continental shelf.

Pacific Island countries have limited land areas but vast space entitlements in the Pacific Ocean, leading Pacific leaders to coin the phrase “Large Ocean Island States”.

Delimiting maritime zones is an important process for countries to secure their rights over ocean space and marine resources, including fisheries and seabed minerals.

The hands-on workshop will enable the technical and legal teams from each country to work with a group of advisers from SPC, Geoscience Australia, the University of Sydney, the Australian Attorney-General’s Department, the Commonwealth Secretariat, GRID-Arendal and the Forum Fisheries Agency.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 09 December 2015 14:17 Read more...
 

Coastal protection project opened in Ailinglaplap, Marshall Islands

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3 November 2015, Majuro

The President of the Republic of Marshall Islands, His Excellency Christopher Loeak, today officially opened the Coastal Causeway Project in Woja Island, Ailinglaplap, as part of the country's efforts to build resilience to climate change.

The project has involved constructing a rock causeway combined with soft engineering measures, such as tree planting, to strengthen the vulnerable and narrow road link between the two parts of Woja Island.

The project is part of the European Union-supported regional €11.4 million Global Climate Change Alliance: Pacific Small Island States initiative, implemented in partnership with the Pacific Community (SPC) and the Government of the Republic of Marshall Islands.

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Newsflash

Disaster Reduction Programme's EU B-Envelope project is working closely with the Ministry of Lands, Survey and Natural Resources (MLSNR) to drill six boreholes on Tongatapu. A contract was signed with NEEDS Engineering Ltd for approximately TOP120,000.

Work has just been completed in drilling the first borehole near the international airport that was at a depth of 55 meters with other sites to follow. The borehole at Fu’amotu will be drilled to a depth of 65 meters while the three boreholes at Mata’kieua wellfield will be at a dept of 24 – 35 meters.

The boreholes will be used by MLSNR to monitor water quality. This is very important as the water piped through the reticulated supply to households in Nukua’lofa and in most villages on Tongatapu is sourced from the underground water lens. The data collected through monitoring the water quality including salinity is essential for good management of the water supply.

The MLSNR visit all boreholes on a regular basis to collect samples for testing in their laboratory. The project has also completed upgrading the infrastructure at the Mataki’eua wellfield with construction of new wellsheds, supply of electric submersible pumps and supply of rainwater catchments to the outer islands.