Building climate and disaster risk reduction resilience in Dominican Republic's coastal-mountainous gradient via Ecosystem-based Adaptation

At a glance

Duration
2019-01-01 to 2023-01-01
Status
Active programmes
Country
Dominican Republic
Total budget
5,00 M€
Sector(s)
GCCA priority area(s)
Countries

The Dominican Republic is one of the most vulnerable countries to climate change in the world. According to the 2017 Global Climate Risk Index (Maplecroft 2017) - Index of Long Term Climate Risk-CRI, the country is in the 11th place. With respect to future climate change, the Dominican Republic shows that 13 provinces (around 40%) have high levels of vulnerability to very high. According to the future climate scenarios for the Dominican Republic presented in the Third National Communication on Climate Change in 2015, temperature will increase by up to 2° C, while rainfall may decrease substantially, in particular towards the southern and western provinces of the country. Likewise, the extreme events of both floods and droughts will increase, particularly in the central and western region. Addressing these uncertainties will require a flexible and iterative approach for long-term decision making and to reduce vulnerability.

 

Furthermore, the Dominican Republic, as a small island developing state, and located in an area of intense cyclonic activity, is constantly threatened by hydrometeorological events such as tropical waves, droughts, storms and hurricanes, affecting human settlements and productive activities. The impact of these extreme events has meant economic losses in the order of 9,470 Million USD and the most affected sectors have been: coastal resources, environment, agriculture, roads, energy, housing, education, industry and commerce, sanitation and health. These statistics refer to major events that cause disasters, but minor and recurring events can cause great damage to assets, livelihoods and crops. Hurricane George on 1998 represented in terms of losses and damages the equivalent to 14% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of 1997. The tropical storms Olga and Noel in 2007 forced to re-plan the economy and the priorities of the government, whose summation of damages and losses accounted for 1.2% of GDP and 5.3% of the national budget. Likewise, there has been a sequel to disasters linked to floods, landslides and droughts that have not been quantified during the last decade, particularly in El-Seibo province.

 

According to these climate projections and models’ outputs, climate change in the Dominican Republic is and will significantly continue to affect key development and social sectors: (i) freshwater resources for human and agricultural use are expected to decrease up to 25% by 2050 as well as the overall water quality. In addition, this water stress in the country is exacerbated by the long-lasting droughts in the Western provinces; (ii) agricultural activity has been significantly vulnerable to climatic variations during the last 20 years. This has implied vulnerabilities in terms of income variations and instability for farmers and ranchers, while for the consuming population this has implied reductions in their purchasing power and food capacities; (iii) the country’s health sector will face projected increasing dengue cases due to more favorable conditions for the appearance of the vector (higher temperature), with a high probability to manifest themselves in all provinces of the country;(iv)the Dominican Republic’s tourism sector is also highly affected by climate change due to: brighter summers, greater number of extreme events, water scarcity, loss of marine biological diversity, sea level rise, greater number outbreaks of diseases caused by vectors, political destabilization and increase in the price of travel as a result of migration policy, among others.  Furthermore, ,more than 60% of the country’s population (over 6 million people) is concentrated in urban areas in continuous expansion, most of which are located in coastal areas or areas at high risk of receiving the impacts of extreme hydro-meteorological events. Finally, climate impacts on coastal-marine systems in the country include: increase coastal flooding due to sea level rise (SLR), erosion of beaches (up to 30%), bleaching of corals, destruction of mangroves and saline intrusion into freshwater. These impacts also affect the livelihood of the most vulnerable populations that live on coastal areas and depend on these resources. Adaptation measures are needed to increase resilience and adaptive capacity of populations living and depending of coastal-marine ecosystems.

 

Considering these climatic scenarios at the National and provincial level in the Dominican Republic, this action strives in developing and integrating adaptation and disaster risk reduction (DRR) strategies into national and local development planning and programming. Furthermore, this action will address uncertainties about climate change impacts in terms of extreme events by developing and implementing a flexible and interactive approach for long-term decision making to reduce vulnerability in El-Seibo province. This action aims to strengthen and mainstream disaster risk reduction and climate change resilience into social and economic plans within sectors and governments in coastal vulnerable municipalities of El-Seibo. Consequently, this action will focus on incorporating EbA into the plans of sectoral adaptation, biodiversity and sustainable development policies by adopting a landscape approach;  promoting the connectivity of habitats, species, communities and ecological processes (landscape link) and continuity of altitudinal gradients; incorporating the theme variability and climate change in the instruments of regulation and management. 

 

At a national level, this action will benefit almost 11,000.000 inhabitants living in the country by developing climate policy and building resilience. At a sub-national level, targeted province of El Seibo will benefit. El Seibo has a total area of 1,786.80 km2 divided into two municipalities: Santa Cruz del Seibo and Miches and five municipal districts. The entire number of habitants living in rural and urban areas of this province will benefit from this project, a total of 85,017 habitants (47,260 man and 40,200 women).

GCCA's action programme
Geographical scope
Initial GCCA/GCCA+ contribution
5,000,000.00 €

Objectifs spécifiques

Two specific objectives of this action have been identified: SO1: to improve preparedness to disaster risk reduction in El Seibo province. SO2: to increase sustainable use and rehabilitation of key coastal and terrestrial ecosystems and their biodiversity.




Produits

The improvement of preparedness to disaster risk reduction (SO1) will be achieved by the improvement of  knowledge on climate change impacts and adaptive capacity at the institutional, community and individual level (0utput 1.1) and mainstream and integration of disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation in local development planning of El-Seibo province (0utput 1.2)

 

The increase of sustainable use and rehabilitation of key coastal and terrestrial ecosystems and their biodiversity (SO2) will be achieved by implementing effective and holistic adaptation strategies to predicted climate change impact in selected intervention areas of El-Seibo province (output 2.1)

 

This action strives in developing and integrating adaptation and DRR strategies into national development planning and programming. Furthermore, this action will adress uncertainties about climate change impacts in terms of extreme events by developing and implementing a flexible and interactive approach for long-term decision making to reduce vulnerability in El-Seibo province. This action aims to strengthen and mainstream disaster risk reduction and climate change resilience into social and economic plans within sectors and governments in coastal vulnerable municipalities of El-Seibo. Consequently, this action will focus on incorporating EbA into the plans of sectoral adaptation, biodiversity and sustainable development policies by adopting a landscape approach;  promoting the connectivity of habitats, species, communities and ecological processes (landscape link) and continuity of altitudinal gradients; incorporating the theme variability and climate change in the instruments of regulation and management; designing and implementation of education, awareness and dissemination programs on the effects of climate change on ecosystems, biodiversity and forests; and promoting interdisciplinary, inter-institutional and intersectorial alliances. Finally, this action will ensure that the natural environment, with diverse and healthy ecosystems, is resilient, capable to adapt and help maintain ecosystem services, protecting biodiversity and forests against the impacts of climate change and variability.




Activités

The programme has three closely linked outputs, which will ensure an integrated approach to delivery. The more detailed intervention logic is in the logical framework (Appendix 1). During the inception phase, the logical framework will be further revised, and final targets updated for each selection sites and they will be nested within the main logical framework. The three outputs have the following associated activities:

Output 1.1: Improved knowledge on climate change impacts and adaptive capacity at the institutional, community and individual level.

 

1.1.1 Baseline climate change vulnerability assessments developed of ecosystems with focus on biodiversity; in key development sectors (agriculture, fisheries, tourism); and within communities in El-Seibo province.

 

1.1.2 Recommendations for integration of climate change risks in provincial policy frameworks developed.

 

1.1.3 Local, national government officials trained (and training of trainers) on climate risk analysis, climate-related scenarios modelling, adaptive policies and planning for climate change adaptation and  (including coastal management, agro-forestry, and infrastructure).

 

1.1.4 Applied and empirical experience from Output 2 in CCA and DRR is transmitted to technical, policy and education institutions to incorporate knowledge generated in training materials, curricula, policy programs at the local and provincial level.

 

1.1.5 Strengthened capacities of governments and local administrations in key sectors (water, agriculture, environment, fisheries, land planning, risk management), for the inclusion of adaptation options (with emphasis on EbA), in their development plans by the local municipalities in El-Seibo.

 

1.1.6 Lessons-learned and best practices are generated and shared between local communities, and national and regional stakeholders through appropriate mechanisms, including project website, seminars, newsletter, mobile messaging, etc, taking into account previous interventions (e.g: DIPECHO funded projects).

 

 

Output 1.2:  Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation mainstreamed and integrated in local development planning of El-Seibo province. 

 

1.2.1 Development of forestry-tailored climate early warning and information systems, and support to the existing environmental database (SIA) to include climate change data.

 

1.2.2 Policy frameworks for El Seibo province and Miches municipality regarding agriculture, forestry, coastal management, watershed management and land use planning are reviewed to integrate climate change risks and adaptation, including the budget associated.

 

1.2.3 Climate change issues mainstreamed in Committees of Prevention, Mitigation and Response to Disasters at province and local level in El Seibo province 

 

Output 2.1: Effective and holistic adaptation strategies to predicted climate change impact are available for El-Seibo province and implemented in selected intervention areas

 

2.1.1 Ecosystem-Based Adaptation (EbA) and Integrated Coastal Zonal Management (ICZM) strategies, are developed through participatory processes, and implemented in selected vulnerable coastal areas along the El-Seibo coastline;

 

2.1.2 Reforestation, restoration and soil-water conservation activities are implemented by local actors (El-Seibo’s fishermen and farmers associations, provincial environment and agriculture delegation, El-Seibo municipality, local private entrepreneurs-tourism) to increase forest cover’s quality and quantity, land retention and the availability of differentiated forest products.

 

2.1.3 Climate resilient forestry and agro-forestry practices are demonstrated in various agro- ecological environments over the coastal-mountainous gradient in El-Seibo;

 

2.1.4 Technological transfer of EbA solution for key development sectors introduced and implemented at different scales (ecosystems, infrastructure and buildings), as options for Climate Change Adaptation (CCA) and Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR).