Wednesday, April 24, 2024
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Fiji committed to development of early warning systems

Fiji’s commitment to inclusivity and accessibility in the development of early warning systems is paramount.

Highlighting this during the Technical Working Group workshop on the Early Warning for All (EW4A) Initiative in Suva, Permanent Secretary for Rural and Maritime Development and Disaster Management, Isoa Talemaibua said they are reminded that the most sophisticated technologies are only as effective as their ability to reach and be understood by those in harm’s way.

“This means designing systems that are not only technically robust but also culturally sensitive and accessible to all members of our community, including the most vulnerable.”

“The success stories from around the globe, where communities have been actively involved in the design and implementation of early warning systems, serve as a blueprint for our efforts.”

He said by integrating traditional knowledge with scientific innovation, we not only enhance the efficacy of these systems but also foster a sense of ownership and trust within communities.

“This dual approach ensures that early warnings lead to early action, saving lives and reducing economic losses.”

Talemaibua said the rapid advancements in technology offered unprecedented opportunities to improve the timeliness and accuracy of early warning systems.

“From satellite imagery and remote sensing to artificial intelligence and machine learning, the potential to predict and respond to disasters is expanding at a remarkable pace.”

“However, the deployment of these technologies requires robust collaboration between governments, the private sector, academia, and civil society.”

“Fiji’s strategic position in the Pacific, coupled with our commitment to technological innovation and regional cooperation, positions us as a leader in the implementation of the EW4A initiative.”

“We aim to leverage our unique insights and experiences to contribute to a global framework that not only anticipates disasters but also empowers communities to act decisively and effectively.”

“The realisation of our ambitions under the EW4A initiative, he said, necessitated strong legal and policy frameworks and international cooperation.”

Talemaibua highlighted that it was only through collective action and shared knowledge that we could face the challenges posed by climate change and natural disasters.

“Our efforts in Fiji will contribute to, and benefit from, the global exchange of best practices, technological innovations, and strategic partnerships. As we move forward, our focus remains on building resilient communities through education, training, and capacity building. We recognise the importance of empowering individuals with the knowledge and tools to respond to early warnings, transforming awareness into action.”

The Technical Working Group workshop on EW4All is expected to validate the project concept with key stakeholders in Fiji, and identify opportunities to address gaps, needs, and priorities for MHEWS in Fiji, to name a few.

Over 50 participants, representing the National Disaster Management Council and UN Partner Pillar leads, engaged in the second day of the workshop to deliberate on Fiji’s proposal for the Green Climate Change Fund.

Reginald Chandar
Reginald Chandar
Head of News & Sports | news@fijilive.com

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