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SPC advances drone use during disaster assessment in Vanuatu

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A specialised team from the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) has successfully completed its contribution to the Cyclone Pam damage assessment in Vanuatu, using unmanned aerial vehicles or drones.

The technical assessment team was deployed to assist with the Vanuatu Government’s damage assessment in April, tasked with determining damage to infrastructure and buildings, coastal inundation and three-dimensional shoreline change.

The team from SPC’s Geoscience Division included one expert flown in from Germany with a copter drone (which flies using eight rotating blades), financed by the German Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) with assistance from GIZ.

Using SPC’s own fixed-wing drone and the copter drone, the team was able to employ the latest techniques to conduct mapping surveys of affected areas, including 10 villages in north-east Efate and seven villages and settlements in south-east Tanna. Having returned to Suva in May, the team has since been analysing the data and sharing it progressively with the Vanuatu Government and other partners involved in the post-disaster assessment.

Last Updated on Monday, 29 June 2015 13:25 Read more...
 

SPC trainers in Solomon Islands to boost emergency response coordination

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Gideon Solo of Solomon Islands Red Cross draws the ideal emergency responder

Honiara, Solomon Islands – In Honiara last week, the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) led training to develop 21 new Emergency Response Team trainers for the Solomon Islands.

The participants engaged in eight days of training on the various activities Emergency Response Teams are expected to perform and also learnt how to provide this training to other personnel in their respective Provinces or organisations.

The training reflects collaboration at the local, regional and national levels with SPC and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), working together to prepare the training materials, which were reviewed by the Solomon Islands Red Cross Society (SIRCS) and National Disaster Management Office (NDMO)  before being delivered to participants representing Red Cross and Solomon Islands Government at the provincial level, as well as NGOs such as Oxfam, Save the Children and World Vision.

Following the training, participants will receive support from Red Cross and the NDMO to provide multi-agency Emergency Response Team training in their home provinces.

In opening the training, the Secretary-General of Solomon Islands Red Cross, Joanne Zoleveke, and the Director of the NDMO, Loti Yates, challenged participants to take the opportunity afforded by this training to strengthen relationships between partners and to prepare to co-deliver Emergency Response Team (ERT) training at a provincial level.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 23 June 2015 13:25 Read more...
 

New tools to increase resilience of Pacific Island countries to natural disasters

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Suva, Fiji – A major regional geospatial information system and other innovative risk assessment tools are being developed to assist Pacific Island countries to undertake evidence-based decision making in development planning and finance.

A four-day workshop, running from 9 to 12 June 2015, opened in Suva today with representatives from Pacific region governments and development partners attending, focusing on the disaster risk modelling and assessment tools.

The tools, including a rapid impact estimation tool and the Pacific Risk Information System (PacRIS), are being developed by the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC), World Bank and the Asian Development Bank with the financial support of the Government of Japan and the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR).

“These tools can be used to improve the resilience of Pacific Island countries by providing the technical information needed to make informed decisions about risk of disasters to communities and their assets,” the Director of SPC’s Geoscience Division, Professor Michael Petterson, said.

Last Updated on Monday, 29 June 2015 14:19 Read more...
 

Lessons from Cyclone Pam help Vanuatu Media prepare for future events

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Representatives from Broadcasters in Vanuatu test their plan in response to a simulated earthquake event in Port Vila

Representatives from Broadcasters in Vanuatu test their plan in response to a
simulated earthquake event in Port Vila

Port Vila, Vanuatu - Vanuatu broadcasters and media came together with the National Disaster Management Office, and the Vanuatu Meteorology and Geo-Hazard Department to plan and prepare their Climate and Disaster Resilience Plans this week.

Funded by the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade through ABC International and PACMAS, the Pacific Media Assistance Scheme, this training seeks to assist Pacific broadcasters in eight countries in preparing  plans that will help them be more resilient to the effects of climate change and disasters.

Having the very recent experience of category five Tropical Cyclone Pam the broadcasters and government ministries were able to share their experiences and lessons learnt to help develop plans.  This will help them continue broadcasting warnings and information to the public during times of disaster when people need this service the most.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 09 June 2015 08:50 Read more...
 

Pacific Initiatives on Climate and Disaster Resilience Showcased in Compendium

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5 May 2015, Suva Fiji - To provide valuable lessons for the future, initiatives from across the Pacific region that address climate change and disaster risks are showcased in a new compendium.

The Compendium of Case Studies on Climate and Disaster Resilient Development in the Pacific showcases 40 case studies from Pacific Island countries and territories that address climate and disaster risks through climate change adaptation, disaster risk management, and greenhouse gas emissions reduction.

The compendium has been compiled by the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) with support from the Secretariat of the Pacific

Last Updated on Thursday, 04 June 2015 10:38 Read more...
 


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Newsflash

FIJI has to ensure that river and rainfall monitoring systems are compatible. And most importantly the data produced has to reach the relevant authorities as quick as possible.

Regional Integrated Water Resource Management project co-ordinator Mark Wilson made the comment while visiting the Fiji Meteorological head office in Namaka on Monday.

"We already have a compatibility problem with the Japan International Cooperation Agency setting up a totally foreign system of rain and river gauges in Ba despite us asking them to use the systems similar to what we have set up here in Nadi," he said.