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Strengthening National Coordination of Efforts to Develop IWRM Policy and Planning in the Federated States of Micronesia

FSM GEF IWRM Project7th June 2012: The Federated States of Micronesia’s National Department of Resources and Development convened the nation's First National Water Task Force Meeting from  23rd-24th May 2012. This meeting brought together water and sanitation related stakeholders from across the vast Micronesian region to launch efforts aimed at developing a National Water and Sanitation Policy and IWRM Investment Plan for the FSM’s four Island States and outer atoll communities that often face uncertainty in freshwater availability and inadequate sanitation. The GEF Pacific IWRM Project Manager for the FSM, Mr. Patterson Shed noted this was an important step in strengthening much needed policy and planning for water and sanitation, particularly in light of the climate variability and change concerns to be addressed by the Task Force. He noted further that an important output of this first meeting was agreement amongst National and State Governments on the way forward to complete: (1) a National Water, Sanitation and Climate Outlook report; (2) a National Water and Sanitation Policy; and (3) a National IWRM Investment Plan. More in the Kava Bowl.

 

Tonga IWRM: New Film Shows Work of the GEF Pacific IWRM Project to Safeguard Groundwater and Nearshore Water Quality in Vava'u

19th May 2012: The following video documentary entitled "Tonga – Preserve Water, Preserve Life" was produced as part of the GEF Pacific IWRM demonstration project in Vava’u in the Kingdom of Tonga. It shows the work of the project to safeguard groundwater and nearshore water quality via strengthened cross-sectorial coordination and several stress reduction pilot activities. The film was produced with the assistance of Roll’em Productions/Oceania Television.

 

Cooks Islands IWRM: New Film Highlights Efforts of the GEF Pacific IWRM Project to Manage Threats to Muri Lagoon

16th May 2012: The following video documentary entitled “Protecting Muri Lagoon” was produced as part of the Cook Island’s GEF Pacific IWRM demonstration project. It shows the current threats to Muri Lagoon and efforts of the demonstration project to reverse current environmental degradation trends at this world class tourism destination. The film was produced with the assistance of Roll’em Productions/Oceania Television.

 

Publication of the First Catalogue of Rivers for the Pacific Islands

Pacific Islands Catalogue of Rivers9th May 2012: For the first time a selection of river characteristics from across the Pacific can be found in one book the Catalogue of Rivers for Pacific Islands. The book documents the main features and characteristics of the rivers in eight Pacific Island Countries and the available data associated with them. Avinash Tyagi, Director of Climate and Water at the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) said that the book provided for the first time, an important hydrological foundation by reviewing the available data sets and compiling them into a consistent style and format. Peter Sinclair, Water Resources Advisor at SPC SOPAC, said that the book was a valuable first step at understanding the dynamics of island rivers but more study and data was needed to ensure rivers could keep up with increasing demand from growing populations and economies. More in the Kava Bowl.

 

UNEP-SPC Pacific Islands Freshwater Vulnerability Assessment Report Released

Pacific IWRM Water Vulnerability Report25th April 2012: "Freshwater under Threat – Pacific Islands", written by David Duncan, Regional Environmental Engineer of the GEF Pacific IWRM Project was recently released by UNEP. The report found that the almost total reliance on rain-fed agriculture across all islands puts economies and livelihoods at risk. Nearly 10% of deaths of children under five in the region are attributable to water related causes; 90% of these deaths, according to the report, can be traced to poor sanitation treatment systems. The report also outlines that the delivery of water supplies and sanitation services in many Pacific countries currently falls well short of Millennium Development Goal (MDG) targets. The report was featured on ABC’s Pacific Radio’s Pacific Beat program and audio of the interview with David Duncan can be accessed below. The report can be accessed online here – Kava Bowl.

Click play below to listen to the audio recording of the interview

 

President Toribiong Endorses the First National Water Policy for the Republic of Palau

First National Water Policy for PalauKoror, Palau, Monday April 23rd 2011: Palau’s President, Johnson Toribiong, endorsed his country’s first National Water Policy this week saying that it “will serve as a clear indicator and important guide for our nation's future economic and sustainable development based on clean and safe water that is essential for the health of our people, ecosystem and economy.” The policy aims to protect and conserve Palau’s water resources, ensure Palauans have access to safe, affordable, sustainable water supply and wastewater services, and see that these services are managed and operated sustainably and effectively. The new policy is based on best practices demonstrated by the GEF Pacific IWRM demonstration project in the Ngerikiil watershed. Importantly it sets a clear direction for the development of the Palau’s IWRM Plan to guide the scaling-up and replication of good water resource management practices in Palau. Photos and full press release available here – Kava Bowl.

 

Dr. Al Duda interview on the GEF Pacific IWRM Project published in the Islands Business magazine

Al Duda on Pacific IWRM13th April 2012: The recently retired Senior Advisor on International Waters at the Global Environment Facility, Dr. Al Duda was featured in the April 2012 edition of "Islands Business" magazine. The interviewed focused on the GEF Pacific IWRM Project and future needs for the Pacific Islands region. In discussing current initiatives of the project, Dr. Duda noted that "Most of the countries’ IWRM demonstration projects are on track. The demonstrations are showing the types of things that are needed, that need to be up-scaled for the future". He noted further that "Much progress is being made on national laws, national policies, the tough decisions that cabinets need to make to deal with global pressures. So as a result of these projects in two years the cabinets of all the countries, I believe, will be ready to take those difficult decisions on utility reform, on agriculture, on imports and exports, on the tourism sector, so that they can fashion a sustainable future". The full interview can be accessed online here – Kava Bowl.

 

Micronesia's Water Issues and Need for IWRM Planning and Action Elevated to Highest Political Levels at MCES 17

17th Micronesian Chief Executives Summit19th March 2012: The 17th Micronesian Chief Executives' Summit (MCES) was convened in Guam from 11th-14th March 2012. Pacific IWRM's Regional Project Manager, Marc Wilson participated in this event and water issues were elevated to the highest political levels by RMI’s President, H.E. Christopher Loeak. President Loeak highlighted that "The notable attention accorded to water governance by the development agencies, in terms of institutional strengthening especially of water service providers, has been very encouraging. However, national integrated water management, catchment scale and community governance have been a challenge to us. We acknowledge that community engagement is a very important element of water resources management and have sought to further involve our community in this process. In this regard, we also understand that the general focus on creating legislation and regulatory tools needs to be strengthened with better public awareness and education." More - Kava Bowl.

 

Tuvalu's film "Falevatia: a toilet for our future" featured on ABC Radio's Pacific Beat

Tuvalu Composting Toilet11 March 2012: IWRM's Environmental Engineer, David Duncan was interviewed by Geraldine Coutts on ABC's Pacific Beat on 7th March. The interview focused on Tuvalu's water issues and the role of Ecosan in conserving water and reducing threats to the environment and human health. Coincidentally, NZ Radio featured "Flushing toilets the ruin of Tokelau's water supply" the same day. Commenting on Tuvalu's work, IWRM's Regional Project Manager, Marc Wilson said "It is great to see Tuvalu's practical demonstration of a locally designed composting toilet leading the way in the protection of water resources and helping shift community preference from flush toilets to Ecosan approaches in the Pacific Islands, particularly on atoll islands". Photos here - Kava Bowl.

Click play below to listen to the audio recording of the interview

 

Tuvalu Composting Toilets: new film highlights water issues and solutions in Tuvalu

5th March 2012: The following film "Falevatia: a toilet for our future" was produced as part of the GEF Pacific IWRM demonstration project on Funafuti, Tuvalu. It shows how composting toilets can help conserve water and minimise threats to the environment, food security and human health. Media release for the film can be found online here. Photographs of the GEF Pacific IWRM Project's composting toilet work can be accessed here -  Kava Bowl.

 

Launch of the GEF SGP - Pacific IWRM Partnership for Strengthened Community Participation in Integrated Water Resource Management in Pacific Island Countries

SGP IWRM Partnership Communique Signing29th February 2012: Dr. Delfin Ganapin, Global Manager of the GEF Small Grants Programme (GEF SGP), and Mr. Marc Wilson, Regional Project Manager of the GEF supported UNDP/UNEP/SOPAC project entitled "Implementing Sustainable Water Resource and Wastewater Management in Pacific Islands Countries" (Pacific IWRM) yesterday launched a partnership aimed at strengthening community participation in IWRM in Pacific Island Countries. The Joint Communiqué issued to launch the SGP GEF-Pacific IWRM partnership, identified immediate priority areas of work under the partnership to include inter alia: development and implementation of community-based IWRM pilot projects; capacity development for community level implementation of IWRM; incorporation of community-based IWRM experiences into regional processes of sharing and learning, as well as policy development; and promotion of regional sharing and networking among CSOs and CBOs. The signed Joint Communiqué can be accessed by clicking here. More information for national teams is available in our online community - the Kava Bowl.

 

Highlights Video of GEF Pacific IWRM Project Activities from Inception to Mid-Term (2010-2011)

The following short video presentation was produced with the assistance of Roll’em Productions/Oceania Television. It highlights progress of the project to its mid-term stage, and was launched at the 6th GEF Biennial International Waters Conference in October 2011. A more comprehensive overview of the mid-term status of the project can be found in the report of the project’s Third Regional Steering Committee Meeting.

 

Highlights Video of Pacific IWRM’s 3rd Regional Steering Committee Meeting (25-30 July 2011)

The 3rd Regional Steering Committee Meeting for the Pacific IWRM Project was convened in the Cook Islands from 25th-30th July 2011. The meeting brought together ~70 water and sanitation professionals from Pacific Island Countries to review progress and to plan the scaling up of project initiatives from “Ridge to Reef”. More information on the work of the RSC and its RTAG can be found here. The full report of the meeting is online here. The following is a brief meeting highlights video prepared by our good partners at Oceania Television.

 

Dr. Alfred Duda, Senior Adviser to the GEF on International Waters Visits the Nadi IWRM Demonstration Project

Al Duda Visits the Nadi Basin in Fiji

18th-19th July 2011: Dr. Alfred Duda, Senior Advisor on International Waters for the Global Environment Facility (GEF), accompanied the Government of Fiji's Minister of Primary Industries, Mr. Jokatani Cokanasiga, and other project stakeholders on a tour of the GEF funded IWRM demonstration project in Nadi, Fiji to see how government agencies and communities are working together to better prepare for and reduce the impacts of floods. In welcoming Dr. Duda to Fiji, Mr. Cokanasiga highlighted GEF's long commitment to Fiji as a sustainable development partner. "Over the years, the GEF has funded a number of projects to improve and sustain the local environment and its natural resources", Mr. Cokanasiga said. Full coverage and photos can be accessed by clicking here.

 

Video Documentary of the GEF Pacific IWRM Laura Water Lens Demonstration Project on Majuro Atoll in the Republic of the Marshall Islands

The following video documentary was produced by Roll'em Productions for the GEF Pacific IWRM Demonstration Project on Majuro Atoll in the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM). The film focuses on initiatives being implemented to safeguard the Laura Water Lens.

 

"Water Micronesia" Music Video Launched at National Water Summits to Celebrate World Water Day in Micronesia

The following music video "Water Micronesia" was written by the Integrated Water Resources Focal Point for the Federated States of Micronesia, Mr. Leerenson Airens to celebrate National Water Summits convened throughout Micronesia on World Water Day 2011.  The Micronesia region faces serious challenges in the management of its very scarce freshwater resources. This video shows the commitment of the youth of Micronesia  to find ways to better manage this  critical resource.

 

Video Documentary of the GEF Pacific IWRM Demonstration Project on Pohnpei Island in the Federated States of Micronesia

The following video documentary was produced by Roll'em Productions for the GEF Pacific IWRM Demonstration Project on Pohnpei Island in the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM).  Kudos to Jeff and the team at Roll'em for an excellent production, and to FSM's IWRM Focal Point, Mr. Leerenson Airens for his support to this initiative.

 

Oceania Television News Promotion of Palau’s National Water Summit Planned for World Water Day 2011 (March 22)

TV news story featuring Ms. Gwendalyn Sisior, Palau’s National Water Policy Support Officer and Mr. Tiy Chung of SPC/SOPAC. Palau’s National Water Summit will be convened at the Ngarachamayong Cultural Center on 22 March 2011 and will be officially opened by His Excellency, the President of the Republic of Palau, Mr. Johnson Toribiong.

 

Pacific IWRM Super 15s Rugby Competition Featured on Micronesia Television

Pacific IWRM’s Super Rugby Competition was recently featured on Oceania Television’s weekly news. This news item promoted the role of the competition in supporting Pacific IWRM activities to raise awareness of water and sanitation issues in the Pacific Islands. High fives to our Micronesian colleagues for their great support to IWRM.

 

GEF IWRM Palau teams up with Roll'em Productions to win a prize in the "Water and Climate" film contest at the Mexico CC COP

The film, “Modern Day Uab”, uses traditional Palauan folklore to highlight efforts to mainstream climate considerations into water resource management in Palau. The video was presented to thousands of participants in the “Dialogues for Water and Climate Change” session at COP 16. A big "high 5" to Jeff and the team at Roll'em Productions.

 

Marc Wilson Talks Micronesia Water and Sanitation Issues on ABC Radio's Pacific Beat Program

Marc Wilson on ABC RadioThe Regional Manager of the GEF Pacific IWRM Project, Marc Wilson was interviewed by Geraldine Coutts on ABC’s Pacific Beat radio program on 20 December 2010. The interview focused on water issues in Micronesia and the outcomes of the 14th Micronesian Chief Executives Summit held in Palau in December. In response to a question about what was needed to protect Micronesia’s water resources, Mr. Wilson said "…I think really it requires a multi-pronged approach, and integrated approach so to speak. So we need people in communities to do basic things like handwashing and try to not pollute their water sources, we need governments to work on their existing systems, we need donors to make sure they better direct funds in the appropriate areas. It's just a huge undertaking really." The full transcript of the interview can be accessed on the ABC website by clicking here.

Click play below to listen to the audio recording of the interview

 

Micronesia's Traditional Leaders and Presidents Commit to Develop Water and Sanitation Policies

Micronesian Chief Executives Summit

Water and sanitation issues in Micronesia were brought to the attention of the region's Traditional Leaders and Presidents during the 5th Micronesian Traditional Leaders Conference (MTLC) and 14th Micronesian Chief Executives’ Summit (MCES) convened in Palau during November and December 2010, respectively. This builds on water policy initiatives of the Pacific IWRM Programme in Micronesia, and recent resolutions of the United Nations General Assembly and Human Rights Commission declaring access to water as an essential human right. An important outcome of this process was the establishment of a permanent sub-committee of the MCES tasked with addressing water and sanitation issues across Micronesia. The Traditional Leaders and Chief Executives also called on all jurisdictions to establish water task forces charged with developing national comprehensive water and sanitation policies and investment plans by 2012. The MTLC Declaration and the MCES Communique can be downloaded by clicking here.

 

Micronesian Sub-Regional IWRM Policy Workshop: 8th-12th November 2010, Pohnpei Island, Federated States of Micronesia

Micronesian IWRM Policy WorkshopSenior government officials and national IWRM programme staff from the Republic of Palau, the Federated States of Micronesia, and the Republic of the Marshall Islands met on Pohnpei Island from 8-12 November 2010. This Sub-Regional IWRM Policy Workshop was convened to plan and prepare inputs to national consultative processes aimed at strengthening national coordination of water resource management and the development of comprehensive national water and sanitation policies. An important outcome of the meeting was the development of plans for the conduct of National Water Summits on World Water Day 2011 (22 March). Representatives from Palau, FSM, and RMI expressed their intention to deliver reports on the state of water resources and their management in their countries, as well as framework water policies at these National Water Summits. The full report of this meeting can be accessed by clicking here.

 

GEF Palau IWRM Demonstration Project Video: Developing "Ridge to Reef" Approaches to Water Resource Management

The following is a short video on initiatives of the GEF IWRM Demonstration Project in Palau to improve management of the Ngerikiil Watershed. The video produced by Roll'em Productions focuses on sedimentation of Airai Bay and Palau's famous fringing reefs, and highlights efforts to develop 'Ridge to Reef' approaches to water resource management on Babeldaob Island.

 

Video Panel Discussion on Water Issues and IWRM in the Small Island Developing States of the Pacific and Caribbean Regions

Filmed by Roll’em Productions for the Oceania Television production “Chised”. Hosted by Mr. Joe Aitaro and featuring Dr. Milika Sobey of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, Mr. Marc Wilson, Regional Project Manager of the GEF Pacific IWRM Project, and Mr. Ronald Charles of the Government of the Commonwealth of Dominica. Brief 1min Palauan language intro. (68 mins/163 MB)

 

GEF IWRM Demonstration Projects Building Awareness of "Ridge to Reef" IWRM across the Pacific

IWRM Awareness Raising in the Pacific IslandsThe GEF Nadi IWRM Project launched its “Water Bus” campaign in February 2011. Mr. Vinesh Kumar, Fiji’s Demonstration Project Manager, said that the bus launch was the start of a wider awareness campaign on how people from different sectors and backgrounds need to work together to improve water management and to reduce the risks from flooding. In the North Pacific, Mr. Leerenson Airens, IWRM Focal Point for the Federated States of Micronesia launched a series of water awareness billboards promoting IWRM on Pohnpei Island. After seeing the “Water Bus”, Mr. Airens told Pacific-IWRM.org that he and his Micronesian colleagues had discussed trying to convince Continental Airways to print a similar design on one of the aircraft that does the island hopper route from Hawaii to Palau.

 

Introductory Video for the GEF Pacific IWRM Project

The video below provides an overview of the GEF Pacific IWRM Project and the “Ridge to Reef – Community to Catchment” demonstration projects  in the 14 participating countries. A high resolution version of this introductory video can be accessed by clicking here.

 

GEF Pacific IWRM Project on Google Earth

Pacific IWRM Project RegionAn overview of the GEF Pacific IWRM Project has been developed for inclusion in Google Earth. This can be viewed live on Pacific-IWRM.org (click here) or visitors can load this directly in the Google Earth 3-dimensional browser - click here.

A GEF International Waters Experience Note on the use of Google Earth in GEF waters projects can be downloaded from the IWLEARN website. Google Earth was used as the basis for the GEF Pacific IWRM Project's Introductory Video - here.

Google Earth is a powerful tool for a range of activities, including production of project maps, research and education, and for outreach. Projects are encouraged to contact the Project Co-ordinating Unit if they require technical support  in this area.

 

Inception Workshop for the GEF IWRM National Demonstration Project in the Sarakata Catchment - Santo Island, Vanuatu

GEF IWRM Demo Project Inception Workshop in VanuatuThe Vanuatu GEF Pacific IWRM Project has hit the ground, with Rossette Kalmert finally being contracted as the Project Manager. Rossette has moved up to Luganville on Santo Island to coordinate this project based in the Sarakata catchment. Rossette has established a Project Office within the Lands Building and has a consultant reviewing and providing recommendations on the project design. An inception workshop was convened from 30-31 March 2010 to: (a) familiarise new SANMA Water Advisory Committee members with the Vanuatu IWRM Demonstration Project; (b) review project status; (c) review and endorse logframe; (d) review and endorse implementation work plan; (e) review proposed TOR for SANMA Water Advisory Committee to act as the Project Steering Committee; and (f) review and agree on membership of the SANMA Water Advisory Committee.

Read more...
 

World Water Day in PNG - "Safe Water for a Healthy Papua New Guinea"

World Water Day in PNGWorld Water Day in PNG went off with a big splash on Monday 22nd March.  Tony Kuman and his water girls did a fantastic job in organising its launch by a gathering of distinguished people interested in water quality.  The Secretary for the Department of Environment and Conservation, Dr Wari Iamo opened the launch at the Port Moresby Grammar School by explaining  the role the government and his agency played in “Communication Challenges and Opportunities – Safe Water for a Healthy PNG”, this year’s WWD theme.  He detailed the challenges faced by PNG‘s environment and to the provision of safe water, including rapid industrial and agriculture development, high population growth and urbanization, and climate change.  He went on to explain the lead role his agency played in the maintenance of ecosystems and monitoring of water use. [Click "Read more" for full story)

Read more...
 

Call for Expressions of Interest to Develop an Accredited Pacific Region Post Graduate Certificate in Integrated Water Resources Management

Pacific IWRM Training ProgrammeThe Pacific Integrated Water Resources Management Planning (IWRM) Programme, funded by the European Union and the Global Environment Funded (GEF) Pacific IWRM Project seek to improve water resource and wastewater management and water use efficiency in Pacific Island Countries.

In order to develop a more systematic professional competency and knowledge network around IWRM in each PIC it has been decided to promote the design, development and delivery of an accredited Post Graduate Certificate in Integrated Water Resources Management within an appropriately located and accredited higher educational institution with demonstrable experience in delivering accredited Postgraduate IWRM Courses.

The target group for this programme would be current National IWRM Focal Points, GEF Pacific IWRM Demonstration and Planning Project Staff and IWRM relevant government officials, civil society including both business and community representatives involved in water resource management.  

Expressions of Interest (EOIs) are being sought from Higher Educational Institution to deliver a formally accredited course to commence in July 2010.  The call for the EOIs can be accessed by clicking here.

 

1st Steering Committee Meeting and Inception Workshop for Pacific IWRM

GEF Pacific IWRM Project Steering CommitteeThe First Regional Steering Committee Meeting and Inception Workshop for the GEF Pacific IWRM Project was convened in Nadi, Fiji from 14-18 September 2009. The meeting reviewed progress in the establishment of National Project Management Units and Demonstration Project Co-ordinating Committees, and training was provided to IWRM Focal Points and National Project Managers on the operation of GEF projects.

Simple but important outcomes of the initial inception phase aimed at the longer-term mainstreaming of IWRM approaches in the participating countries, included successes of lead agencies in establishing locally-based Committees chaired by independent, community representatives. The success of the Land and Water Resource Management Department of Fiji’s Ministry of Primary Industries in establishing the Nadi Basin Catchment Committee (NBCC) was noted as an excellent example of the impact of the project to date.

The report adopted by the meeting is currently being circulated for comment from representatives of the GEF Implementing Agencies, National Lead Agencies, and supporting organisations - click here.

GEF Pacific IWRM Inception Workshop
Group Photograph for the GEF Pacific IWRM Inception Workshop

 
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