PACC FSM: Adapting coastal road designs to take into consideration the impacts of climate change
In the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM), the development of coastal management capacity is the primary objective of the project. PACC FSM actions specifically aim to improve infrastructure, specifically road design in the state of Kosrae to withstand more severe climate and weather conditions. PACC FSM identified poor road design as a significant threat to the island states in the case of a climate change disaster. This infrastructure is utilised daily by Kosrae residents.
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Climate change is exacerbating the negative impacts of environmental threats on homes, communities, livelihoods, and the physical and financial wellbeing of citizens. In particular, a decrease in the predictability of climate patterns is affecting crop production. Many lakes and wells that were used for drinking water have turned brackish; this water in turn spreads to the soil and wetlands, destroying crops and trees. Land based activities—such as dredging, upland clearing, road development, developing infrastructure, mining and deforestation—are also contributing to these problems.
The dispersal of FSM’s four states compounds these challenges. Distributing supplies and reaching out to various communities is difficult, and there is a lack of technical expertise and information readily available to the people.
FSM consists of 607 islands (totalling 271 sq mi in land mass), of which 65 are inhabited. Kosrae, one of FSM’s four states, has a land area of 42 square miles. This state is very mountainous and covered in tropical vegetation with peaks approximately 2000 feet above sea level. The coastline is very dense with mangroves and forests. Humid temperatures and rainfall of over 200 inches annually characterise weather conditions in FSM.
Seventy-five percent of Kosrae is experiencing coastal erosion. Given that most of the state’s infrastructure, commercial enterprises and residential properties are along the coast, this erosion threatens the state’s economy, communities and livelihoods. In addition, FSM has a growing population and migration rate, putting further pressure on habitable areas. With a growth in population and an increase in the harvesting of fish and wildlife, economic resources will need to be proportionally increased.
Key Results and Outputs
The key impact for the PACC project is to demonstrate innovative technologies in roading design that can be replicated to strengthen resilience against the negative effects of climate change. PACC FSM is also working on a policy level; understanding that the inclusion of climate change in FSM’s policies and strategic plans will push the government to be prepared for future climate change impacts and to maintain road designs. PACC FSM is also supporting programs aimed at improving environmental awareness and education to increase community involvement in conserving natural resources. Hiring in-country expertise in technical capacity to support environmental programs will not only create employment, but also avert communication gaps.
Reports and Publications
Board Meeting Reports
Assessments and Background Documents
Monitoring and Evaluation
The first of the PACC outcomes is devoted to mainstreaming. The PACC approach to mainstreaming has a dual purpose: 1) to strengthen the ability of institutional frameworks, policies and plans to take climate change risks into consideration and 2) to improve the capacity of key national government and community decision-makers to integrate adaptation measures in key decisions.
The second PACC outcome is to design and demonstrate innovative decision systems, approaches, technologies and practical measures to improve climate-resilience.
The third outcome, Technical Support and Communication, is to ensure that results and lessons from the PACC project are shared regionally and globally. The goal is also to bring together new knowledge generated through the project as the basis for a strategic regional approach to climate change adaptation among Pacific Island Countries and Territories.
- National adaptive capacity developed
- Community vulnerability to climate change reduced
- Technical assistance & Regional Cooperation
- 1.1 Technical capacity of key decision makers developed
- 1.2 Institutional coordination mechanisms established
- 1.3 Tools to assess economic costs of adaptation developed and utilized
- 1.4 Legislative and policy directives prepared and adopted