SPC Geoscience Division

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Water and Sanitation Programme

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A long-term programme of capacity building, advocacy and awareness in sustainable water management for Pacific Island Countries.

SOPAC, the regional agency mandated to coordinate water and sanitation in the Pacific, provides support to its member countries through three components: Water Resources Management; Water and Sanitation Services; and Water Governance.

Pacific Island countries have uniquely fragile water resources due to their small size, lack of natural storage, competing land use and vulnerability to natural hazards.


Pollution of freshwater resources, unsafe drinking water supplies and inadequate sanitation can have a significant impact on public health, quality of life, the environment and economic development.


Urbanization, rural development, growing populations, climate change and increased demand from industry and agriculture is putting further pressure on the region’s freshwater resources, threatening the long term viability of communities and islands.


Natural disasters exacerbate water issues. Excessive rainfall, often linked to cyclones and typhoons, causes flooding and disruption of drinking water supplies. Small islands that rely on groundwater and/or rainwater harvesting are highly vulnerable to droughts, often linked to El Niño or La Niña triggered climatic disruptions. Both situations – too much or too little water – compromise the safety of drinking water supplies and increase the risk to public health.

www.pacificwater.org

Last Updated on Sunday, 20 June 2010 12:44  


Newsflash

Friday 23 May 2014, Nadi, Fiji - Many Pacific Islands have excellent weather records that can be used to understand and predict events that affect our communities such as droughts, El Niño, La Niña, and sea level changes. Making this information more available and user-friendly is the critical next step that countries face.

Representatives from 11 Pacific Island meteorology services and land survey departments met in Nadi from 19 to 21 May to discuss this issue. The countries represented are all participants in the Australian-funded Climate and Oceans Support Program in the Pacific (COSPPac).

According to Programme Manager Janita Pahalad of the Australian Bureau of Meteorology, ‘COSPPac aims to support Pacific Islands’ ability to understand and apply scientific research on climate variability to national development plans.’

COSPPac’s implementing partners, the Australian Bureau of Meteorology, Geoscience Australia and the Secretariat of the Pacific Community through its Geoscience Division (GSD), have been providing products, training, and services to assist government agencies to apply climate and ocean research to national planning and decision-making.