An expression of interest for the first component of Barbados’ Coastal Risk Assessment and Management Programme (CRAMP) has been sent out.
And, Director of the Coastal Zone Management Unit, Dr. Leo Brewster, said six companies were already shortlisted to execute the first component of the US $42 million project which is being funded by the Barbados government in association with the Inter-American Development Bank.
The first component involves diagnostic studies being conducted to guide the remaining two components of the project and decisions to be made.
Once final approval on the six firms comes back from government, they will be notified and the tendering process started. The firms will then be required to submit their technical and financial proposals on the project before any contracts are awarded.
Meanwhile, the construction work has been awarded exclusively to the design of Baird and Associates, the team responsible for work executed on the coastal infrastructural programme done at Rockley and Welches, Christ Church, and at Holetown, St. James.
Dr. Brewster said the company would be responsible for the construction, supervision and tendering process for construction work.
The Director explained that under the first component of CRAMP, science would be used to guide work being done. "We will be looking to revisit the sea formatting of the island to the near shore, and also at doing some aerial photography," he noted.
He added that the first component would also seek to analyse the shoreline over the last 50 years; conduct a sediment study; look at cliff and slope stability on the east coast of Barbados; hazard mapping of the island’s coastline; and other inter-related studies.
"When you collect all the baseline information and build on what we already have, you then have to do things like sea level rise scenarios to look at the implications of accelerated sea level rise on the coastline, which areas are going to be impacted by potential beach erosion, and the impacts on coral reef health," he explained.
Dr. Brewster said that based on the vulnerability of cliffs and slopes, scientists would be in a better position to identify high risk coastal zones prone to slippage and failure.
"We will also look at several hazards. Things like sea level rise, storm surge, earthquakes, wind and tsunamis," he said.
CRAMP is aimed at building resilience to coastal hazards including those associated with climate change, through enhanced conservation and management of the island’s coastal zones.
Its overall objective is to build capacity in integrated coastal risk management in Barbados, while incorporating disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation through development planning, control and monitoring of the coastal zone.