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Regional Risk Reduction Initiative Seeks to Reduce Hazard Vulnerability of Small Caribbean Islands

Published 18th May 2012, 4:23pm

The Overseas Countries and Territories R3i (Regional Risk Reduction Initiative) is holding a conference in the Cayman Islands between May 20th and May 26th.

R3i looks at developing tools and strategies for addressing the hazard risk and exposure of various English and Dutch overseas countries and territories in the region; a total of 11 Islands, namely Anguilla, Aruba, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Montserrat, Turks and Caicos, Bonaire, Curacao, Sint Maarten, Saba and Sint Eustatius.

Small islands in the Caribbean are considered highly vulnerable to a range of natural hazards and climate change impacts, especially because settlements and critical infrastructure tend to be concentrated in low-lying coastal areas and other hazard prone locations.

The 4.932 million project started in 2009 to address the risk and exposure of these small islands by providing a network of regional infrastructure, programmes, policies and protocols to strengthen the capacity to predict and prepare for natural hazards, thus improving resilience and reducing risk and subsequent loss.

Other outputs include hazard mapping and vulnerability assessment, and modeling to inform planning and development processes. The project is part of a larger UNDP Barbados and the OECS Programme on disaster risk reduction to support countries in improving their abilities to manage disasters, reduce risks and improve their abilities to respond to emergency events.

The conference is being held at the Marriott Hotel. It commences with 3 days of geographic information systems training and this is followed by a number of meetings and presentations relating to the progress to date.