Pacific island countries need to build their fiscal and economic resilience to climate change and natural disasters as these have lasting consequences on their livelihoods, economies, and fiscal balances.
Small Island Developing States (SIDS) in the Caribbean, Pacific, Africa and Indian Ocean are among the world’s most vulnerable countries to natural disasters, and climate change is expected to greatly increase their exposure to hurricanes, storm surges, extreme winds, and flooding. A report launched today by the World Bank says the transport sector can play a central role in reducing the vulnerability of SIDS.
By 2050, Fiji’s annual losses due to extreme weather events could reach 6.5 percent of GDP because of the impact of climate change, with more than 32,000 people pushed into hardship every year, according to a significant new climate vulnerability study launched today at COP23 in Bonn, Germany.
"We all agree that Small Island Developing States (SIDS) are on the frontline of sea-level rise and the consequences of a warming climate. Climate change adaptation is an existential issue for many of these countries and critical to the achievement of resilient development. "
The Pacific Possible: Climate change and Disaster Resilience report highlights the costs of making Pacific coastlines more resilient to climate change, which vary between one and thirteen percent of GDP across all Pacific Island countries, with higher costs in atoll island states such as Kiribati and Marshall Islands.