Global solutions through multilateralism is needed to address climate change due to its nature as a global problem.   

This was highlighted by the Minister for Agriculture, Rural and Maritime Development, Waterways and Environment, Dr. Mahendra Reddy while addressing the Global Climate Change Alliance Plus (GCCA) – Scaling-up Pacific Adaptation (SUPA) Project workshop in Labasa today.  

“It is evident that climate change is one of the greatest challenges experienced in the history of humanity. Fiji has been consistently ranked high in climate change vulnerability, among other countries in the South Pacific,” he said. 

“Our reliance on climatic sensitive sectors means it is vital that we enhance the climate resilience of Fiji’s economy. The Global Climate Change Alliance Plus – Scaling-up Pacific Adaptation Project does exactly that, via scaling-up of past performing interventions,” Reddy added. 

Minister Reddy said the Scaling up the Soasoa Drainage System for 2050 Project, which is part of the SUPA Project, was linked to meeting national objectives, as the project was aligned to the National Adaptation Plan (NAP) and National Development Plan (NDP). 

“The project is a National objective to scale-up efforts to strengthen coastal boundaries of urban centers and rural communities through hybrid or nature-based solutions to risk reduction purposes and to slow the need to relocate communities and infrastructure, while improving and maintaining drainage networks in urban and rural areas as measures to protect against inland floods, considering that drainage defects are the dominant cause of floods,” Minister Reddy said. 

The project also contributes towards the rural economy through promoting equal opportunities, access to basic services and building resilient communities and providing a sustainable sugar industry through the provision of proper drainage services. 

The EUR500,000 projects aim to build the resilience of the communities living close to the Soasoa drainage scheme by raising the level and scaling-up the current flood and flap-gate and floodway to adapt to more frequent extreme precipitation event and sea-level rise. 

The project will not only benefit the Soasoa community in Labasa but will also benefit travelers who were often stranded due to flooding of Soasoa flats during heavy rainfall.

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