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The Climate and Oceans Support Programme in the Pacific (COSPPac) recently had its Overall Traditional Knowledge Project paper published online as a chapter in the Palgrave Handbook of Climate Resilient Societies, a series which provides readers with an understanding of the term resilience and what climate resilient societies mean. 

The paper, titled “Enhancing Climate Resilience in the Pacific: Assessment of a Participatory Approach to Improve Climate Communication”, was co-authored by Dr Lynda Chambers of the Australian Bureau of Meteorology; Mr Roan D Plotz of Victoria University in Melbourne, Australia; Ms Siosinamele Lui and Mr Tile Tofaeaono of the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP); Mr David Hiriasia of the Solomon Islands Meteorological Service; Mr Ofa Fa’anunu and Mr Seluvaia Finaulahi of the Tonga Meteorological Service; Ms Rosslyn Pulehetoa Mitiepo of the Niue Meteorological Service; Ms Faapisa Aiono of the Samoa Meteorological Service; and Mr Albert Willy of the Vanuatu Meteorology and Geo-Hazards Department. 

The paper demonstrates how a participatory approach can be used to preserve and promote the continued use of traditional knowledge and incorporating this knowledge into National Meteorological Services’ products and services, using five countries as examples. These five countries are Niue, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, and Vanuatu. 
According to Ms Lui, "Our traditional knowledge holds some of the oldest scientific records and observations in our region, recognising the value of these traditional knowledge and cultural practices, and when combined with science,  this knowledge can work to address many of the challenges faced today”. 

Across the Pacific, NMSs are working with traditional knowledge experts to build community resilience to extreme events. While they are mandated to provide relevant and timely meteorological information to communities, including forecasts and warnings of conditions that are likely to endanger life, property, or the environment, in rural or remote areas however, particularly in developing countries, traditional weather forecasting may be preferred over contemporary methods. 

The paper can be access online at this link

For more information on the Enhancing Climate Resilience in the Pacific: Assessment of a Participatory Approach to Improve Climate Communication paper, please contact Ms Siosinamele Lui (COSPPac Climate Traditional Knowledge Officer) at [email protected]