Urban and rural sanitation in the Solomon Islands: How resilient are these to extreme weather events?

The Solomon Islands, like other small island developing states in the Pacific, face significant challenges from a changing climate, and from increasing extreme weather events, while also lagging behind the rest of the world in terms of drinking water, sanitation and hygiene (WaSH) services. In order to support planning for the implementation of national WaSH strategies and policies, this study contextualizes representative urban and rural baselines for Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6 (“by 2030, achieve access to adequate and equitable sanitation and hygiene for all and end open defecation”). We highlight specific threats to the current sanitation services under extreme weather events such as flooding and drought, both of which are commonly observed in the country, and provide suggestions for structural improvements to sanitation facilities to increase resiliency. As the first detailed nationally representative cross-sectional sanitation study in urban and rural areas in the Solomon Islands, the results of this paper inform national WaSH policy, strategic planning and programming by the Solomon Islands Government and stakeholders.

Urban and rural sanitation in the Solomon Islands: How resilient are these to extreme weather events? Lisa Fleming, Carmen Anthonj, Mamita Bora Thakkar, Waqairapoa M. Tikoisuva, Musa Manga, Guy Howard, Katherine F. Shields, Emma Kelly, Marc Overmars and Jamie Bartram. 2019. Science of the Total Environment, 683, 331-340. doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2019.05.253.