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Jun 27, 2018

Building Resilient Communities to Weather Disasters

Hugo Patt

Hurricanes and flooding in Belize are nothing new. Compounded with a changing climate, the frequency and intensity of these natural disasters are growing. In Belize, we have had our fair share of costly natural disasters and over the years, the focus on building resilient communities has grown. The Government of Belize and Taiwan are now partnering on a new project to minimize impacts caused by extreme weather events. The project which will start next year, seeks to develop an improved emergency management system with the application of GIS technologies to reduce the negative consequences of disasters. The pilot project will help to assist in marking out the potential flood areas and strengthen monitoring, as well as establish an early warning mechanism for floods. We stopped in today at a seminar on flooding prevention to find out more about the project.

 

Hugo Patt, Minister of Natural Resources

“Belize is partnering with the Republic China Taiwan in delivering this seminar, intending to learn from Taiwan’s experience and work on the flood prevention project, to develop and improve emergency management system with the application of advanced hazard mitigation technologies to reduce the negative consequences of disasters. This seminar will have distinguished experts from Taiwan and Belize to share their experience and technologies in the topics of disaster research and prevention strategy, flood disaster stimulation and early warning technology in urban areas and disaster prevention in using  Geographic Information Systems.”

 

Earl Trapp

Earl Trapp, Mayor, San Ignacio & Santa Elena

“This pilot project is to build capacity in the use of geographic information system that will enhance the capabilities of Belize in the application of technology to reduce disasters, as well as to assist in the marking out of the potential flood prone areas and try to establish an early mechanism for flood mitigation in San Ignacio and Santa Elena. In the past three days, the delegation from Taiwan, personnel from Forestry Department and the Town Council have traversed around the twin towns and have seen the conditions with the drainage system in key areas that need to be addressed urgently to avoid future clogging that will raise the bar for extreme flooding in these specific areas in the twin towns.”

 

The project is a collaboration between Taiwan’s International Cooperation and Development Fund and the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries, Forestry, Environment, and Sustainable Development.

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