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Development assistance in the Pacific

Pacific regional – climate change and resilience

Australia is working more closely than ever with the Pacific on issues of greatest concern to them, including climate change. Pacific island countries reaffirmed the strategic and economic threat climate change poses to our region through the 2019 Pacific Islands Forum (PIF) Kainaki II Declaration for Urgent Climate Change Action Now. This is the strongest collective statement PIF Leaders have ever issued on climate change.

Pacific Island Forum members agreed in the 2018 PIF Boe Declaration that climate change is the single greatest threat to the livelihoods, security and well-being of their peoples. The Pacific is Australia’s home and we share the region’s responsibilities and challenges – particularly the impact of climate change.

Australia is resolutely committed to the Paris Agreement and to meeting and beating our climate targets. Australia's Long-Term Emissions Reduction Plan is a whole-of-economy plan to achieve net zero emissions by 2050.

Australia’s development policy, Partnerships for Recovery: Australia’s COVID−19 Development Response (June 2020) commits to ensuring climate change is embedded in our policy solutions to support sustainable recovery from the economic impacts from COVID in the Pacific. DFAT’s Climate Change Action Strategy also commits to integrate climate change action across Australia’s development assistance program. This includes in the infrastructure, renewable energy, agriculture, health and education sectors.

At the 2021 COP26, Australia increased its pledge to spend $700 million over five years (2020-21 to 2024-25) to strengthen climate change and disaster resilience in the Pacific. This builds on Australia’s strong support for Pacific climate and disaster resilience, and success in exceeding a 2016 commitment to spend $300 million over four years (2015-16 to 2019-20).

This approach supports the Framework for Resilient Development in the Pacific, endorsed by Leaders in 2016 as an integrated and coordinated approach to addressing climate change and disaster risk management in the Pacific.

Working with Pacific partner governments

Australia working in consultation with partner governments in the Pacific to develop programs that address Pacific priorities. The fact sheets below showcase some of the practical and meaningful support Australia is providing through bilateral programs to strengthen resilience.

Working with regional organisations

Australia also supports many regional programs with a dedicated focus on climate change and disaster resilience. The Australia Pacific Climate Partnership supports Pacific governments to deliver climate and disaster resilient development and low-carbon growth by brokering climate and disaster science and information services through the following regional programs. Some highlights of this program are listed below.

The Australia Pacific Climate Change Partnership

Australia recognises COVID-19 recovery efforts need to be undertaken in a manner which builds resilience in Pacific communities that will continue to experience climate change impacts

The Australia Pacific Climate Partnership brings together a number of Australia’s regional investments to build climate change and disaster resilience. Our programs are developed in consultation with partner governments in the Pacific to address their priorities

Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) Core Funding

$22.9 million 2018-2021

Australia provides core funding to the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP). SPREP supports Pacific island countries to protect and improve their environment, and to ensure sustainable development for present and future generations. SPREP is also the lead organisation to coordinate Pacific engagement in United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Paris Agreement negotiations.

Climate and Oceans Support Program in the Pacific (Phase 2)

$23.3 million, 2018-2022

The Climate and Oceans Support Program in the Pacific (COSPPac) supports 14 Pacific meteorological services to monitor, analyse and communicate information about climate and oceans, including seasonal forecasts and sea level rise. This includes tide and wave data for shipping and fishing, as well as rainfall monitoring and forecasts to support planning in agriculture/food security, water and sanitation, and health.

Australia Pacific Climate Partnership Support Unit

$22.6 million 2018-2022

The Support Unit enables development program managers and implementing partners to integrate climate change and disaster resilience in aid investments. For example, understanding climate change related health impacts through increased disease to bring sustained improvements in population health; interpreting climate change projections and their impacts on agriculture and tourism; and designing infrastructure to mitigate against energy, food and water insecurity.

Governance for Resilient Development in the Pacific (Gov4Res)

$10.4 million 2019-2022

Governance for Resilient Development in the Pacific (Gov4Res) aims to integrate climate and disaster risks in Pacific national and sub-national plans and policies. Gov4Res has supported national climate change advisers to develop policies across a range of sectors in Fiji, Solomon Islands, Tonga and Vanuatu, and is now expanding to other countries.

Australian Humanitarian Partnership Disaster READY Program

$50 million, 2018-2022

Disaster READY is supporting national actors, communities and organisations in four Pacific island countries and Timor-Leste to prepare for, and reduce the risk of, disasters. Working with six Australian NGOs and local partners, the program has supported over 390 communities, schools and churches to develop or update inclusive disaster plans.

Australian Red Cross Partnership

$50 million, 2020-2025

Australia recognises that disasters are exacerbated by climate change, creating economic, environmental, energy and health challenges that compound development challenges. The Australian Red Cross Partnership is working with Red Cross National Societies to improving the ability of National Societies and communities in the Indo-Pacific to cope with and recover from crises and disasters.

Pacific Women Climate Change Negotiators Training

$1.4 million, 2016-2021

Australia is working to amplify Pacific voices in a range of international fora. The Pacific Women Climate Change Negotiators Training is supporting female delegates from Pacific island countries to represent their country’s positions in international climate change meetings.

Kiwa Initiative

$1 million, 2020-2024

Australia contributes to the multi-donor Kiwa Initiative – Nature Based Solutions for Climate Resilience, which is led by the French Development Agency (AFD). This Initiative aims to strengthening resilience to climate change through biodiversity conservation for Pacific islands ecosystems, communities and economies.

Pacific Resilience Partnership

$600,000, 2018-2022

The Pacific Resilience Partnership (PRP) was established by Pacific leaders in 2017 to drive implementation of the Framework for Resilient Development in the Pacific (FRDP).

Pacific Blue Carbon Program

$6 million, 2018-2022

Mangroves are often described as the lungs of ocean. Protecting and restoring coastal blue carbon ecosystems (mangroves, saltmarshes and seagrasses) limits additional emissions, protects existing stored carbon, and increases carbon sequestration. Australia is supporting national climate action and livelihoods in PNG and Fiji, through enhanced measurement and investment in blue carbon ecosystems.


$3 million, 2019-2024

The ReefCloud platform uses innovative technology and artificial intelligence (AI) to monitor the condition of our precious coral reefs; gathering data about how they are impacted by increasing pressures – including climate change. The Australian Institute of Marine Science will develop and pilot the project in Fiji and Palau.

Pacific Nationally Determined Contributions Hub (NDC Hub)

$500,000, 2017-2020

Australia is supporting the Pacific region in developing regional solutions to respond to climate change impacts. The NDC Hub supports Pacific island countries to leverage resources and expertise to implement their commitments to the Paris Agreement through Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs).

Related documents

Name of document Year published Blurb
Governance for Resilient Development in Pacific (Gov4Res) - UNDP Project Design Document 2019 Design document for Governance for Resilient Development in Pacific, including monitoring, evaluation and learning, governance and management arrangements, and risk management procedures.
COSPPac (Phase 2) – Design Document 2019 Design document for Phase 2 of the Climate and Oceans Support Program in the Pacific, including the policy framework and ‘lessons learned’ from Phase 1.
Australia Pacific Climate Change Action Program – Framework Design 2017 Design document for the Australia Pacific Climate Partnership. Outlines activities to ensure Australia meets its commitment to build resilience to the impacts of climate change and disasters in the region.

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