Saving every drop: Fighting drought in Honduras

The project is helping to acquire, calibrate and install automatic weather stations to identify and prepare for future extreme weather events. Photo: UNDP Honduras

In Tegucigalpa, Honduras' capital, residents of the Campo Cielo district have one more line of defense against climate change and the severe drought putting over half a million people at risk of food shortage.

With UNDP support, a 63,000-litre storage tank has been installed, along with a rooftop harvesting system for rainwater, providing water for nearly two thousand local residents.

"I would have to work for more than two years to save up to [make this] change to my roof. I could not have done it without the [project's] help. For that, I’m very grateful,” says Stanley Nery Mendoza, a resident in Campo Cielo.

Highlights

  • Over 10,000 poor households will increase their access to water by 50%.
  • Automatic weather stations benefit 13,000 residents of areas vulnerable to landslides and floods.
  • More than 60,000 ha of forest are protected in an area critical to urban water supply.

The installation of water storage tanks in Tegucigalpa is a part of a 5-year, 5.18 million USD project financed by UNDP's Adaptation Fund to help Honduras address climate risks in water resource management.

"The current drought in Central America puts enormous pressure on people dependent on water resources for subsistence farming and water-intensive industries”, says Reis Lopez Rello, UNDP Climate Change Adaptation specialist.

In Cantarero Lopez, another of the 4 urban communities in Tegucigalpa supported by the project, public infrastructure such as roads and sidewalks is climated-proofed, including installing ditches to direct rainfall out of the road.

The project is also helping acquire, calibrate and install automatic weather stations to identify and prepare for future extreme weather events, benefiting 13,000 residents of areas vulnerable to landslides and floods.

The government of Honduras, through the Secretaría de Energía, Recursos Naturales, Ambiente y Minas, is also conducting investigations into underground water resources and contributing to knowledge management through an web portal on hydrology and the installation of automatic weather stations in this area.  

Other climate change adaptation measures, such as the protection of more than 60,000 ha of the Choluteca basin forest, critical to Tegucigalpa's water supply, installing micro-irrigation systems and providing water filters to communities, will help over 10,000 poor households increase their access to water by 50 per cent throughout the year.

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