WASHINGTON, May 31, 2011 – The World Bank Board of Executive Directors today approved a Global Environment Facility (GEF) grant of US$ 4.1 million in support of the implementation of São Tomé and Principe’s (STP) Adaptation to Climate Change Project.
“I’m very pleased to see that we are moving swiftly with this operation. São Tomé and Principe’s insularity makes it highly vulnerable to climate change trends. As outlined in our Africa strategy, the Bank will pursue efforts as these to improve countries’ resilience to shocks,” said Laurence Clarke, Country Director for São-Tomé and Principe. “This project is consistent with the Government of STP’s own priorities and complements other donors’ support on this particular matter.”
The development objective of the Adaptation to Climate Change Project is to increase the adaptive capacity of vulnerable coastal communities in STP to the adverse impacts of climate variability and change.
The project has three components as follows: the first component will develop coastal early warning systems and improve safety at sea by disseminating timely forecasts prior to extreme events. It will distribute safety equipments and provide training on safety at sea, and will reinforce community emergency preparedness. The second component will address coastal erosion and inundation through the piloting of participatory adaptation measures in vulnerable coastal communities, and by raising public awareness and implementing improved coastal resilience policies. A third component will support project implementation.
“São Tomé and Principe climate change trends indicate an increase in temperature of up to 2º C as of 2010; longer dry seasons; increased flooding events; and a more pronounced fog and storm season which is contributing to high mortality of fishermen at sea. These highlight the need for all of us to step up our efforts in improving this small island development state’s capacity to adapt and resist to these adverse trends,” said Sofia Bettencourt, the World Bank task team leader for the project.