Federated States of Micronesia

Scaling up community resilience to water stress and climate related extreme events in Chuuk State, FSM

The ‘Scaling up community resilience to water stress and climate-related extreme events in Chuuk State, FSM’ project aims to scale up water security measures in the outer islands of Chuuk State and specifically in Polowat, Pulusuk and Pulap atolls. Rainwater harvesting systems will be installed in community shelters and buildings, and training will be provided in the maintenance of these systems. Householders will be trained to monitor the quality of the water in their individual water storage systems and a Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) programme will be conducted in the schools.

Project Focus: Water Sector

Direct benefit: 3,026 persons
Indirect benefit: 45,628 persons

  • Geographic coordinates: Lat. 1°S – 14°N, Long. 1135°W- 166°E
  • Total land area 701 km²
  • Exclusive economic zone (EEZ) 2,980,000 km²
  • Population (2011 estimate) 102,360
    • Temperatures have warmed and will continue to warm with more very hot days in the future.
    • Annual and wet season rainfall since 1950 has decreased at Pohnpei but at Yap there has been no clear change. Rainfall is generally projected to increase over this century with more extreme rainfall days. Drought frequency is projected to decrease.
    • Sea level near the Federated States of Micronesia has risen and will continue to rise throughout this century.
    • Wave height is projected to decrease in December to March and waves may be more directed from the south in the June to September.
    • Ocean acidification has been increasing in the Federated States of Micronesia’s waters. It will continue to increase and threaten coral reef ecosystems

Source: BOM, CSIRO, 2014, Climate Variability, Extremes and Change in the Western Tropical Pacific: New Science and Updated Country Reports

How does this project address climate change adaptation in FSM?

People living in the outer islands of Chuuk State are largely dependent on the harvesting of rainwater for drinking water. Underground water lenses in the low-lying atoll islands are shallow and vulnerable to saltwater intrusion, especially during droughts. The effects of climate change on temperature, rainfall, weather extremes, sea level, and the frequency and magnitude of typhoons is exacerbating the difficulties experienced by outer island residents to source and supply drinking water.

Focusing on the people living in Polowat, Pulusuk and Pulap, the project will adopt a participatory and inclusive approach that addresses the vulnerabilities and the rights of all residents. Skills in climate resilience will be enhanced, particularly for island council members and community leaders.

After assessments and community consultations, rainwater harvesting systems will be installed in selected community shelters and buildings and community representatives will be trained in the management and maintenance of these systems.

Improving the quality of the water stored in existing household rainwater harvesting systems will be addressed by providing training on how to monitor the quality of the stored water and taking appropriate measures to address issues.

To enhance the communities’ preparedness for disasters, the project will install a manual rain gauge in Polowat to collect and compile rainfall data.

FSM is one of the four countries where the full methodology for accessing the impact of completed climate change adaptation projects is being tested.

Read more:

Key Highlights

  • Conducting assessments on existing water storage systems for community buildings and consulting with the communities in Polowat, Pulusuk and Pulap.
  • Upgrading existing rainwater harvesting systems and installing new ones in community shelters in Polowat, Pulusuk and Pulap islands.
  • Training of residents to monitor and maintain household and community rainwater harvesting systems.
  • Promoting water hygiene through WASH Programme campaigns to schools in Polowat, Pulusuk and Pulap.
  • Installing a manual rain gauge in Polowat and compiling the rainfall data to inform future drought management.
  • Conducting a needs analysis and raising awareness about climate resilience for local area stakeholders.
  • Building the capacity of community leaders and island council members in climate resilience through accredited training.
  • Integrating climate change and disaster risk into local area sustainable development plans.
  • Assessing the impacts of past climate change adaptation projects and applying the results to national strategic planning.
  • Testing an impact assessment methodology on completed climate change interventions.

Activities meet the following SDGs:


Increasing access to quality water

Concept Note

Climate Change Profile

Project Design Document – Amended January 2021

National Steering Committee

Inception meeting – Jan 2021

Web Story: FSM GCCA+SUPA Inception meeting with stakeholders in Chuuk

Installation of water security measures

Summary of Water Assessment- Northwest Region, Chuuk State -2021

Web Story: Water systems Assessment in Polowat, Pulap and Pulusuk, Chuuk, FSM

Web Story: Water quality issues identified during the second assessment in the northwest Islands of Chuuk

Letter of Agreement- Pulusuk Island

Letter of Agreement- Polowat Island

Letter of Agreement- Pulap Island

Training and capacity building

Building community resilience

Country Brief

Pollap Island Preliminary Desktop Review