New Pacific Islands Climate Storybook

Pacific Islands Climate Storybook Cover

A new Pacific Islands Climate Storybook comprehensively details community experiences in addressing the impacts of a changing climate in Pacific Island countries. The storybook reflects broad community engagement over a two-year period and incorporates experiential knowledge and scientific data. With emphasis on the vital need for climate early warning, the stories highlight the use of or need for climate services to increase community resilience to a changing climate.

In American Samoa, for example, lessons learned from a devastating drought considerably lessened the impacts of a later, even more severe drought. Constant monitoring of regional climate information and a public prepared to mitigate the risks made a striking difference. Because of early warnings, Manus residents in Papua New Guinea were ready to move uphill when an extremely rare, huge swell flooded their island. In Vanuatu, a guidebook and innovative animation are translating science from climate early warning systems into useable strategies for farmers and others especially vulnerable to climate variability. Planting taro deeply, for instance, allows roots to better reach water reserves. Removing all but two of the young shoots from parent banana trees and replanting them in different areas helps reduce water demands in the soil.

The stories are an outcome of an extensive dialog process that joined those developing climate products and services for the Pacific Islands with those who will actually use the information to plan and adapt. With support provided through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the project was developed by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) working closely with the Pacific Island Meteorological Services and numerous other partner organizations across the Pacific and beyond. 

The storybook incorporates technical material, process guides, and activities that were used to conduct the dialogs and build the stories. It conveys an approach that is easy for decision-makers to understand and apply, and may serve as a model for governments and other organizations that seek to engage communities in adapting to a changing climate.

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