The role of geographical information systems in dealing with climate change and disaster risks
Friday, 01 June 2012 15:24

The Land Resources Division of SPC is conducting a GIS consultation and training exercise in collaboration with Fiji’s Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI), seeking broad inputs on the spatial information needed to improve decision making, and help identify and monitor climate change and disaster risks in the agriculture and forestry sectors.

This collaborative activity is supported by the SPC/GIZ programme: Coping with Climate Change in the Pacific Island Region (CCCPIR), and is taking place in SPC Fiji from 28 May to 1 June 2012.

The consultation is intended to give LRD staff, and personnel from the Agriculture and Forestry Departments of the MPI an opportunity to learn about the potential uses of GIS in their climate change activities. This critical technology can provide useful information to help identify current and future risks and vulnerabilities, and can be used in designing and implementing adaptation programmes.

The consultation covers a vast pool of knowledge, information and best practices, in applying GIS to climate change. A number of datasets within LRD (such as those for pests, plant genetic resources and crop production) have been identified as suitable for mapping. These datasets will then be combined with other environmental datasets, such as climate and landcover, to measure their current distribution and potential future distribution under various climate change scenarios. For example, the LRD plant health team saw that mapping the results of plant pest and disease surveys on GIS can help to better understand current distributions, and the presence of specific plant pests and diseases, and future risks associated with the spread of these pests and diseases as a result of climate change and other factors.

LRD is delivering a GIS training package in consultation with MPI, A second training workshop and, follow-up consultations, are scheduled for LRD staff and MPI personnel from the 18 June to the 6 July, 2012. A crucial outcome of this training will be improved GIS capability for both LRD and MPI, and long-term action plans, that identifies further needs for both organisations.. It will also identify key climate change applications that would be useful in the context of climate change adaptation planning. This will be used to support training and the implementation of activities at the national level.

For more information, please contact: Ms Anju Mangal on (Tel: + 679 3370733; email: LRD HELPDESK: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) or visit the SPC Website: