June 2018c

8 9 OPENING LINES T he board of directors of the Caribbean Development Bank has approved a proj- ect that aims to increase the use of tech- nology to build greater climate resilience throughout the region. Funded through a grant of US$1.5 million and to be executed by the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC) over a three-year period, the project approved recently will support flight-mapping services to collect light de- tection and ranging (LiDAR) data for almost 10,000 square kilometers of vulnerable Caribbean coastal areas. The grant provides resources for the preparation of an intellectual property policy (IPP) and the creation of a product development and marketing strategy for the Centre, as well as the training of 38 end-users from the bank’s borrowing member countries (BMCs) in the applications of LiDAR data. “Generating quality scientific data and informa- tion products, data sharing, and ease of data ac- cess and transfer, are important aspects of build- ing climate resilience across the Region because they support an improved understanding of cli- mate risks and impacts,” said Daniel Best, Director, Projects Department, CDB. “LiDAR-based mapping technology can therefore assist the region in addressing some of the prob- lems being experienced, due to the absence of geo-spatial data for decision-making, and improve the capacity of stakeholders to make better-in- formed decisions, for more effective management of natural hazard and climate risks,” he added. LiDAR is a remote sensing technology used to obtain highly accurate elevation measurements of the earth’s surface. LiDAR technology is capa- ble of simultaneously gathering both topographic and bathymetric data, which are used to provide detailed information of land and ocean floors, and offer economies of scale. The project fills an important gap in efforts to design new climate-resilient investments, retrofit existing infrastructure, support coastal zone man- agement, identify natural hazards, and formulate disaster risk management strategies throughout the region. Currently, progress with these activities is being hampered by the absence of quality spatial data- sets, which are often project-specific and provide limited data documentation methodology. More- over, the cost of acquiring high quality datasets is expensive – a factor that constrains routine up- dating. The LiDAR project will enable CDB’s BMCs to acquire high-resolution coastal and bathymetry datasets at significantly reduced costs, compared with commercial sources. CDB ANNOUNCES US$1.5M TO BUILD GREATER CLIMATE RESILIENCE THROUGH TECHNOLOGY