Nature is Wise Enough

Bruno Lopes

Bruno Lopes

In response to global climate change impacts, most countries have focussed on ‘hard’ or ‘grey’ infrastructure options such as embankments for flood control or new reservoirs to cope with water shortages. These options can be costly to build and maintain, and generally do not take the benefits of natural ecosystem flows into account.

Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EBA) is an climate adaptation alternative approach routed on conservation, sustainable management and restoration of ecosystems. Examples of such nature-based solutions to climate change include sustainable agriculture, integrated water resource management and sustainable forest management. Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EBA) favours natural cycles and nature-based solutions that harnesses biodiversity and ecosystem services to reduce vulnerability and build resilience to climate change.

 

Watersheds and outlets in La Digue Island

Coastal barriers in La Digue

Water outlet at the beach

Water outlet and barrier in La Digue

The climate change projections in the Seychelles show that rainfall will increase in amount and will become even more irregular. Today, much of the precipitation in the Seychelles is falling in sharp bursts, creating heavy flooding in the wet season, while imposing extended period of drought during the dry season. As the country does not have a large water storage capacity, and the topography of the islands constrains such infrastructure, water supplies are heavily dependent on rainfall. Furthermore, the coastal zone is vulnerable to flooding as a consequence of rising sea surface levels, and increased storm surges from cyclonic activity in the Western Indian Ocean.

OIKO formulated a UNDP EU supported project to reduce climate vulnerabilities: The “Ecosystem Based Adaptation (EBA) to Climate Change in Seychelles”, financed by the Adaptation Fund for 6.5 M. US$ over 2014-20 to enhance freshwater security/flood control, reduce the risks of coastal flooding and mainstream EBA into development planning and financing resilience and sustaining watershed and coastal processes in order to secure critical water provisioning and flood attenuation ecosystem services from watersheds and coastal areas.

We use Earth Science technology to improve the quality of life in our world, especially the economic livelihood opportunities of the world's most vulnerable populations and the sustainable use of the natural resources of our planet. Our work is divided in six main program areas- Climate Adaptation, Climate Mitigation, Ecosystems, Natural Resources, Poverty & Livelihoods and Climate Services.