Tonga: Cyclone Ian Reconstruction and Climate Resilience Project


Building back climate-resilient homes in Tonga following Tropical Cyclone Ian. Source

Context and Objectives 
The project supported the National Tropical Cyclone Ian Response Plan. It aimed to strengthen the climate resilience of housing and selected community facilities for the affected population of the Ha’apai islands, and to strengthen the Government of Tonga's preparedness to recover from future natural disasters.

Main Activities 
Component 1: Technical Assistance and Training for Enhanced Disaster and Climate Resilience: Resilience strengthening for safer homes and communities. 

  • Building advice: Provision of technical assistance to home owners and communities for disaster and climate resilient repairs and retrofitting of homes and community facilities, as part of the supported self-recovery.  
  • Climate Resilience Training: For tradespeople, supervisors, local builders, community leaders and home owners, for climate resilient buildings and infrastructure.
  • Improving application of the building code: Strengthening and updating of the Building Code and designing and implementing  public awareness and practices campaigns for self-enforcement (focusing on low income groups). 
  • Improving the disaster recovery and reconstruction framework:   
  • Review and documenting lessons learnt from reconstruction and recovery of past major disasters;
  • Reviewing and updating of relevant legislation and institutional arrangements, such as the Emergency Management Act 2007 and the National Emergency Management Plan 2010; 
  • Developing an operations manual detailing implementation and planning arrangements for disaster recovery and reconstruction, including standard assessment templates and procedures; and, 
  • Conducting  a roadshow and broad community consultations on the draft Recovery and Reconstruction Policy.

Component 2: Project Support. This support for project implementation and management includes for example procurement, financial management, contract management, social and environmental safeguards oversight. 


  • The 2010 National Emergency Management Plan and the 2007 Emergency Management Act were reviewed and updated.
  • A National Housing Reconstruction Policy and a Housing Reconstruction Strategy were drafted, and is being submitted for cabinet approval. An operations manual detailing planning and implementation arrangements for disaster recovery and reconstruction was developed. A building construction monitoring system was developed. This includes a post-disaster housing-damage-assessment data collection tool and a damage data collection tool. 50 government officials were trained, including 5 women, to supervise building work on-site and to use the inspection tool.
  • A public awareness campaign on building compliance took place.
  • Coastal hazard risks were assessed and mapped to inform reconstruction planning and resilience building within the Ha'apai affected areas.
  • The Tonga building code was updated

Partnerships and Coordination
Every effort was undertaken to coordinate with the Delegation for the Pacific and other EU-funded programmes such as the 10th EDF ACP-EU Building Resilience and Safety in the Pacific (BRSP) programme, the DCI-ENV GCCA Pacific Small Islands Pacific States projects and the 10th EDF EU-GIZ Adapting to Climate change and Sustainable Energy programme.
Coordination with government institutions took place, with constant interactions regarding data preparedness and emergency response procedures.

  • Pacific
Priority area
  • Integration of disaster prevention into post-disaster recovery
Window of Action
  • Window 2
Amount approved
  • $2,000,000
  • $12,500,000
  • 04/2015 - 11/2018