SPC Geoscience Division

Home News & Media Releases Latest Kiribati Broadcasting Authority tests ability to deliver services in emergency

Kiribati Broadcasting Authority tests ability to deliver services in emergency

E-mail Print PDF

6 March 2015 – Thirteen personnel from Kiribati’s Broadcasting and Publication Authority, Kiribati Red Cross Society, the Office of Te Beretitenti and Newspapers; Kiribati Independent, Kiribati Update and Kiribati Newstar have today tested their readiness to stay on air and provide vital public information during a major emergency or disaster.

The staff, including journalists, media technicians, and administrative staff participated in a table top exercise to test new Climate and Disaster Resilience Plans that they developed earlier this week through a two-day workshop led by the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC).

National broadcasters play a pivotal role in providing public information and warnings about emergencies and disasters.

The Climate and Disaster Resilience Plan supports the ability of the Broadcasting and Publication Authority to perform its duties in the event of an emergency or disaster in Kiribati by setting out ways to increase the resilience of the authority’s infrastructure, operations and personnel.

It is part of an initiative funded by the Pacific Assistance Media Scheme (PACMAS) and implemented by the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) in partnership with SPC. Kiribati is among eight countries to benefit from this initiative.

Ueretan Bauro, Editor Te Uekera Newspaper participated in the workshop and commented that “the BPA participants were grateful for the opportunity to attend this workshop which they found to be very interesting as it highlighted the importance of resilience planning”. Mr Bauro added that he found “the content of the workshop to be very relevant to BPA and it has provided BPA with good ideas on how to better prepare before any disaster”.

The exercise provided an invaluable opportunity to practice emergency response procedures based on a simulated crisis situation and better prepare for future emergencies or disasters in Kiribati, a Pacific nation highly vulnerable to natural disasters and the impacts of climate change.

This work is in line with several of the key strategies within the Kiribati Joint Implementation Plan for Climate Change and Disaster Risk Management.

To date vital Climate and Disaster Resilience Plans have been developed for broadcasters in Palau, Samoa and Tuvalu. Later this year broadcasters in the Cook Islands, Marshall Islands, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu will complete their plans. Following this, all broadcasters will receive newsroom training to build their capacity to report on climate change and disaster risk management issues.

Media Contacts
SPC: Dr Kirstie Méheux, Senior Adviser, Disaster Risk Management Training and Professional Development, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
SPREP: Ms. Nanette Woonton, Media and Public Relations Officer, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ;

Last Updated on Thursday, 19 March 2015 05:52  

Newsflash

New technologies will change the way people live in Pacific Island countries. This is according to Dr Wolf Forstreuter, GIS and Remote Sensing Unit specialist at SOPAC, the Applied Geoscience and Technology Division of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC).

Dr Forstreuter said recent work to detect and analyse changes in vegetation on the Kiribati Islands of Aranuka and Maiana had important implications for all Pacific Islands.

“By overlaying recent satellite imagery on maps that were drawn from aerial photographs taken in 1969 of the Kiribati islands of Aranuka and Maiana, it is possible to detect any changes that have occurred,” he said.

“Not only can we assess the impact of people on the environment, we can assess whether this has been positive or negative. One of the surprises of this study was to discover that new mangrove areas are visible on the coast of both islands.”

Dr Forstreuter said this could be because of the 1969 photography-taking place during high tide, followed by misinterpretation by mapmakers in Britain.

“But the very real possibility is that the mangroves are increasing because they have been protected by the island’s inhabitants,” he said.

The comparison between the older maps overlaid with recent satellite images also shows the spread of settlements and changes to bodies of water.

“This information becomes a useful planning tool for the future. Where should settlements develop? What water is available for such development? Where and what types of farming should be planned to support these settlements?” he said.