Government to conduct coastal assessment studies

Minister without Portfolio in the Office of the Prime Minister, Mike Henry, displays a photograph of an eroded coastline during a contract-signing ceremony to facilitate coastal assessment studies at eight areas across the island. (Photo: Contributed)
Minister without Portfolio in the Office of the Prime Minister, Mike Henry, displays a photograph of an eroded coastline during a contract-signing ceremony to facilitate coastal assessment studies at eight areas across the island. (Photo: Contributed)

The Government of Jamaica will be conducting multi-hazard assessments of eight priority coastal areas across the island.

The studies, to be undertaken over two years by consulting firm Smith Warner International, will provide an understanding of the vulnerabilities and risks associated with the built and natural environments, with a view to identifying solutions geared towards climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction.

A sum of $132.6 million is being provided by the Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF) under the Jamaica Disaster Vulnerability Reduction Project (JDVRP) for the assessments.

“The studies will help to identify solutions.”

— Mike Henry

Representatives of JSIF and Smith Warner signed the contract for the undertaking at JSIF’s offices in Kingston on Thursday, September 19.

Minister without Portfolio in the Office of the Prime Minister, under which JSIF falls, Mike Henry, said that the studies are important, given Jamaica’s vulnerability to the impacts of climate change, with approximately 80 per cent of economic activity taking place along the coast.

“The studies will help to identify solutions, which will guide climate change and risk reduction. They will help us to understand where we are vulnerable and help us to know how we are vulnerable, and the contract relates to identifying that,” he noted.