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At the workshop held 19 November 2019 in Phnom Penh, CDIA presented the results of its Climate Vulnerability and Adaptation Assessment for the cities of Battambang, Kampot, Kratie and Chhlong.
The study, with support from Agence Francaise de Developpement (AFD) and the European Union, will guide the prioritization of investments for the “Sustainable Development of Secondary Cambodian Cities Project” of the Royal Government of Cambodia and AFD. It is directly managed by the Ministry of Public Works and Transport (MPWT).
This investment project aims to ensure city livability, promote social and economic inclusiveness, improve infrastructure rehabilitation and strengthen tourism and economic activities.
A separate feasibility study (FS) is ongoing to develop the project’s technical components; and findings of the urban diagnosis or the technical assessment of infrastructure, public space and landscaping were presented alongside the vulnerability assessment.
Running parallel with the FS, CDIA’s study will provide information on the climate aspects and inform the identification, prioritization and design of the proposed investments.
In particular, it has identified the primary and secondary risks in the four cities: Battambang, Kratie and Chhlong are most at risk of floods and riverbank erosion; while Kampot, a coastal city is most susceptible to storm surges, sea level rise and floods.
These findings were derived using a climate model and various projection scenarios to cover a full range of possible climate change impacts. The initial conclusions were also based on field visits, stakeholder consultations and desk reviews.
The increased frequency and severity of climate-related hazards will have negative impacts on water supply, food availability, and public health among others. Vulnerable populations like the poor, women, elderly and children are set to suffer the most.
To prepare for these risks and reduce vulnerability, the next steps under the CDIA study are to: 1) prepare an adaptive capacity assessment that will highlight interventions to strengthen the capacity at all levels; and 2) propose options to set out the priority structural and non-structural interventions for adapting to climate change and reducing its impacts in the four cities.
At the workshop attended by 60 participants from national and local government offices and development agencies, AFD Deputy Director for Cambodia Ms. Anne Chapalain, in her closing remarks, encouraged the continued support and involvement of stakeholders in the next phase of the project.
“The objective of the project is to develop livable and resilient cities, and climate change will be one of the driving criteria for the coming steps when establishing priority investments. Feedback from participants are key to ensure the quality of the final deliverables. Based on the shared understanding of the urban diagnosis and the vulnerability assessment, the next step will be to establish priorities through discussions with all key stakeholders of the project.”
Photos from the Ministry of Public Works and Transport (MPWT):