$14.8 million World Bank Grant will also Strengthen Resilience to Climate Change
Sydney, December 19, 2012 — More than 88,000 residents of 31 Samoan villages are set to benefit from better road access, after the World Bank Board today approved a $US14.8 million grant to help the Government improve the West Coast Road’s resilience to extreme weather events.
As well as improving the climate resilience of the West Coast Road, the project will enhance local capacity to develop a more climate resilient road network.
Tropical Cyclone Evan is an unfortunate reminder of how vulnerable Samoa is to tropical cyclones, heavy rains and storm surges.
“Our thoughts and heart-felt sympathies go out to all of those affected by Tropical Cyclone Evan. The World Bank stands ready to work with the Government and its development partners to assist Samoa at this difficult time,” said Ulrich Zachau, acting World Bank Country Director for PNG, Timor-Leste, and the Pacific Islands.
“Investments such as the development of the West Coast Road are critical to build resilience over the long term.”
About 80 percent of Samoa’s coastline is rated as sensitive or highly sensitive to erosion, flooding and landslip. Such extreme weather events have a major impact on the West Coast Road and the rest of the network limiting reliable access to it, and undermining commerce and damaging efforts to reduce poverty.
The West Coast Road Project, which is funded through the Pilot Program for Climate Resilience, will be implemented by the Land and Transport Authority (LTA) of Samoa over a five-year period.