More than 300,000 Jamaicans to Benefit from Better Preparedness to Climate Risks

February 10, 2016

WASHINGTON, February 11, 2016— The World Bank Board of Executive Directors yesterday approved a US$30 million loan to help enhance Jamaica’s resilience to disasters and climate hazards through the promotion of risk management.

Jamaica is one of the countries in the world most at risk of natural disasters, with high percentages of GDP and population vulnerable to two or more types of hazards. Damages and losses from hydro-meteorological disasters and earthquakes were estimated at over US$3 billion between 1988 and 2013. In addition, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the impact of sea level rise and intensified storm surges in the Caribbean will be highest in Jamaica.

“The government is actively working to reduce the country’s vulnerability to disaster and climate risk through a number of initiatives. This project aims to improve the capacity of government agencies to generate and use hazard and risk information to shape local and national actions and make infrastructure more resilient,” said World Bank Country Manager for Jamaica, Galina Sotirova.

Among the concrete results to be achieved by the Jamaica Disaster Vulnerability Reduction Project are:

  • Establishment of a National Risk Information Platform, Coastal Risk Atlas and strengthened seismic monitoring network;
  • Building and rehabilitation of over 8,000 meters of storm drains;
  • Building of new fire stations to benefit over 200,000 people;
  • Training of approximately 450 government officials and constructors on the National Building Code and constructions practices;
  • Development of several multi-hazard risk assessments for coastal areas.

The US$30 million loan from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) for the Jamaica Disaster Vulnerability Reduction Project has a 30-year maturity period and a 7-year grace period.

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