The Adaptation Measures to Counteract the Effects of Climate Change (AMCECC) ‘Ridge to Reef’ Project will significantly focus on sound flood resiliency adaptations and improved water resources management.
Speaking today, at the launch of the AMCECC ‘Ridge to Reef’ Project and its website at the Greenbelt area, Holetown, St. James, Minister of Environment and National Beautification, Trevor Prescod, expressed delight at the “imperative and indeed transformative” civil works occurring within the project that would assist in alleviating flooding along the West Coast.
Minister Prescod noted that through his ministry and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the project would “intervene with respect to the frequency and intensity of damaging flood events” in the Holetown, Sunset Crest and Trents areas.
“Barbados is a low lying small island developing state in the Eastern Caribbean made up of Karst limestone overlaying the sedimentary rocks, which creates a rather unique and contained network of underground aquifer systems.
“This peculiar phenomenon to the island is what is responsible for its most precious high quality water resource, and is also unfortunately contributory to the rate at which storm water reaches low lying coastal areas like the Holetown and Trents areas, which typically results in significant, dangerous and economically detrimental flash flooding events,” Minister Prescod stated.
Also speaking at the launch was US Ambassador to Barbados, the Eastern Caribbean and the OECS, Linda Taglialatela, who stressed that the Caribbean is one of the most vulnerable regions in the world to storms and hurricanes, which threaten key economic sectors, including tourism, agriculture, fishing and transportation.
Ambassador Taglialatela mentioned that the project “seeks to improve the management of storm water flows to reduce flooding and address other drainage challenges stemming from rainfall and extreme weather events…[and] phase II will upgrade culverts and new drainage channels to handle increased volumes of run-off water.
“These modifications will improve the management of storm water and direct run-off away from roads, homes, and businesses, protecting them from flooding and other incidents”.
The AMCECC project, which was initiated on November 8, 2013, consists of US $5.3 million in grant funding from USAID, as well as US $1.7 million from Government. The civil works component of the project will be carried out by INFRA Inc.
The website for the project is www.climatechangebarbados.com, and it will be updated throughout the duration of the project.