Climate resilient Housing revolution in Dominica paces up
Climate resilient Housing revolution in Dominica paces up

Environmental issues led by climate change, such as floods and storms, leaves measureless drastic impacts on a country as well as on the livelihoods of people. Nearly 14 million people become homeless on the average number every year amid the environmental disasters, underscores a report by Reuters in 2017.

The highest toll of displacements and loss of homes is being witnessed by the South and Southeast Asia countries, according to a finding. Though Latin America and the Caribbean are also among the highly impacted regions, despite their very less contribution to climate change, these states suffer the most.

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Tropical Storm Erika and Hurricane Maria left the Caribbean island Dominica jolted and thousands of people homeless and hopeless. The destruction caused was immeasurable and was nearly equivalent to 90% of its’ Gross Domestic Product (GDP), as per OCHA Services and UNDP.

On the other hand, according to Post-Disaster Needs Assessment’s estimation, the total destruction caused was EC$2.51 billion (US$931 million) and losses of EC$1.03 billion (US$382 million), which computes to 226% of 2016’s GDP.

The Dominican administration then stepped in and decided to rebuilt the parts of the country which were damaged amid natural disasters; that is when the Prime Minister of the country Dr Roosevelt Skerrit at UN announced to make island world’s first-ever climate-resilient nation.

Following this, integrated housing communities across the Caribbean country were developed, and a housing revolution took place. The revenue to run the housing revolution comes from the citizenship by investment programme of Dominica, as well as through Public-Private Partnership. These climate-resilient houses are granted to the lower or middle-income Dominican population, especially to those who lost their residence in the destruction caused by natural calamities.

Finally, in 2018, the resettlement for the displaced Dominica families was started at the Bellevue Chopin Housing Development. The first integrated community included: three hundred fifty (350) residential units, a 28-unit commercial complex, a community centre, a health centre, and a recreational field.

The last three years witnessed commencing of 12 housing developments across the East Coast, West Coast and the capital city, Roseau. Around 2,000 housing units have been completed so far. The government also announced to the beginning of housing developments in Scotts Head, Eggleston, Canefield, Vieille Case, Penville, Point Michel, Woodford Hill, Paix Bouche, and Roseau Valley.

The residents of Grand Bay by 2023 will be living in a master-planned community development, which will include amenities like – shops, a basketball court, a community centre, pocket parks, recreational spaces, and a gas station; safely secured 24/7, with the police station and fire station within the area.

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Meanwhile, to assure resilience, the buildings are being built with reinforced concrete with stormproof windowpanes, retaining walls, sewage and stormwater drainages, as well as underground utility lines.

To allot the houses, a selection system is followed, and consideration is also given to single mothers.

Not only this but several local contractors and the other skilled workers received employment for building various housing developments. The concepts of community renewal and resilience at the present time are fused in disaster recovery as the environment is transforming at a fast pace.

The integration of these houses and recovery is being successful in nations such as Dominica via Integrated Housing Development Programme (IHDP). This is a clear sign proving that there lies a significant potential to enhance the quality of life as well as the socio-economic status of even the most impoverished population.