The USAID climate change program assists the six Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) countries and Barbados with adaptation measures to mitigate the effects of climate change. Based on an analysis of regional needs, supported by two broad stakeholder workshops held in St. Lucia and Barbados, two critical areas were identified as requiring special attention: coastal zone management and resilience, and freshwater resources management. Funding is provided to relevant government agencies to ensure that climate change is better integrated into national development planning. The private sector, non-governmental organizations, and local communities will be integrated into the process to ensure that they are prepared for and able to adapt to the impacts of climate change. The ability of small, vulnerable island states to address these challenges in advance through appropriate adaptive actions will prove much more cost effective than dealing with future environmental damage. Developing the region’s capacity for data collection and prediction capabilities are key components of USAID’s strategy. These efforts are supported by raising stakeholder awareness of climate change and adaptation in order to strengthen the long-term viability of small island communities.
Last updated: September 23, 2015