Regional Training Programme for Hydrology Scientists and Technicians and Regional Hydrology Networking in the Pacific
UNESCO is contributing through a broad regional Type-II partnership funded by the Government of New Zealand to the strengthening of national capacities in water resources management and monitoring. The aim is to directly enhance the capacity of water resource managers in both high island and atoll countries across the Pacific through a three-year SOPAC/UNESCO/WMO training programme.
Activities in 2005 included the second course in the Hydrology Training Programme (Suva, Fiji Islands, 4-22 April 2005). This second course focused on training in surface and groundwater hydrology and an introduction to the use of climate information and integrated water resources management. Other items included review of the first course, identification of contents of the third course and preparations for the development of the Pacific Hydrological Cycle Observation System (HYCOS).
Another joint UNESCO-SOPAC initiative is that to provide groundwater monitoring capacity building through an action-oriented research programme for the island of Aitutaki in the Cook Islands, which faces rapid tourism infrastructure development with resulting water shortages. This activity follows UNESCO-supported participation of Cook Islands’ water sector personnel in regional training and networking events in late 2004.
Since 2006, UNESCO is continuing its support to the Pacific Partnership through contributions to the final year of the training course, as well as through selected capacity-building initiatives in individual Member States. The development of a sub-regional Pacific IHP network is being promoted, in close cooperation with SOPAC and other partners. UNESCO will also increasingly support the water resources management capacity at new and emerging biosphere reserves (see under Part VI ‘Land resources’ and Part IX ‘Biodiversity resources’).
Further information on these and other water-related activities are given in the periodic newsletter of the Pacific Partnership Initiative on Sustainable Water Management or contact the Partnership facilitator at SOPAC, Marc Overmars (email@example.com)