World Bank Supports New Urban Climate Resilience Project in the Marshall Islands


The World Bank’s Board of Directors has approved a new project to build climate resilience, safety and livability in urban areas of the Marshall Islands.

The Republic of the Marshall Islands’ $30 million urban resilience project includes support for public facilities and urban spaces that are more resilient to climate change, as well as planning and policy assistance adaptation to climate change. The project also includes the construction of coastal protection comprising seawalls, dykes and embankments, to protect important infrastructure in the capital, Majuro.

The urban centers of the Marshall Islands are among the most densely populated areas in the Pacific, and internal migration from the outer islands has only intensified in the past 30 years. This rapid urbanization and growth exacerbates risks from climate change and natural hazards and requires better risk-informed urban planning and regulations. This is a particularly serious concern in the low lying atoll nation which is already highly vulnerable to climate change impacts such as sea level rise, tropical storms, typhoons and prolonged droughts.

“As people continue to move to our country’s urban centers, there is increasing pressure on our efforts to ensure that there are appropriate housing, urban infrastructure and services,” said the hon. Jiba Kabua, Minister of Public Works, Infrastructure and Public Services. “We recognize the need to address these planning challenges by improving urban resilience at building, neighborhood and island levels, and we welcome this new support from the World Bank to address these serious risks to urban communities. .”

The project will invest in more resilient and sustainable public facilities to serve as demonstration projects for future developments. This will include the construction of more climate-resilient government buildings in Majuro, which will play an important role in supporting government services during natural disasters.

“We are pleased to support the Government of the Marshall Islands through this new project which will also provide analysis of current and future climate-related risks to people, homes and infrastructure,” said Degi Young, Resident Representative of the Bank. world for the Marshall Islands. , Federated States of Micronesia and Palau. “We are also proud that this builds on the World Bank’s climate adaptation support for the country through existing projects, including the Pacific Resilience Project and our work on climate impact mapping. sea ​​level rise and adaptation options for the Marshall Islands through our recent atoll study”.

Throughout urban planning improvements and coastal resilience measures to improve protection against storm surges and sea level rise, the project will maintain a focus on outreach and consultation with communities.

“When improving land use planning at the local level, the strong involvement of local communities, landowners, public authorities and the private sector is essential,” said Degi Young. “We have worked with the government to ensure that consultation is at the center of this work, which will ultimately improve the quality and safety of urban communities.”


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