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CARIBBEAN | CDB grant to build regional capacity for climate forecasting

BRIDGETOWN,Barbados,  Jul. 26, CMC  –  The Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) has  approved EUR773,000 (US$900,264) in grant funding to enhance regional resilience to climate variability and change.

The grant will be provided to the Caribbean Institute for Meteorology and Hydrology (CIMH), and will be used to strengthen national and regional institutional capacity for weather and climate forecasting.

weather According to Cheryl DIxon, the Coordinator in the CDB’s Environmental Sustainability unit, severe weather events produce some of the most significant negative socio-economic impacts in the region and climate change is predicted to increase both the frequency and intensity of these events.

“Without appropriate mitigation and adaptation measures, these events will continue to hamper the development of the region. Equipping policy-planners and the most vulnerable communities with early climate/weather information and advisories to anticipate climate-related shocks and changes is crucial to inform planning for climate resilience and disaster risk management,” she said.

CIMH has been using a Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) Platform to provide weather predictions for the Caribbean.

The project will provide training for regional stakeholders in using the WRF platform, as well as training in marine forecasting.

The project will also facilitate the development of climate early warning systems for regional public health sectors.

Climate variability is a significant driver of mosquito borne diseases such as dengue fever, chikungunya and zika, as the Aedes aegypti mosquito has been shown to increase in numbers during warmer and wetter weather conditions.

The CDB says early predictions will assist health sector planning to reduce the occurrences of infection.

Funding is being provided under the African Caribbean Pacific-European Union-Caribbean Development Bank Natural Disaster Risk Management (ACP-EU-CDB NDRM) Programme.

The ACP-EU-CDB NDRM Programme is an initiative of the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States, funded by the European Union. It supports disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation activities in the CARIFORUM countries.

The project also aligns with CDB’s strategic objective of supporting inclusive and sustainable growth and development.