Jamaica to be the world's first country to use ground-breaking technology for visualising and analysing infrastructure networks' exposure to extreme weather events

Ground-breaking technology developed to help countries most exposed to extreme weather events to become more climate resilient has been launched in Jamaica today by the global Coalition for Climate Resilient Investment (CCRI).

Jamaica is the first country to complete development of the Systemic Risk Assessment Tool (J-SRAT), designed by Oxford University in collaboration with the Jamaican Government and support from CCRI and the UK’s Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office. J-SRAT has been developed to help identify ‘hotspots’ across the country’s major infrastructure networks - such as energy, water and transport - most vulnerable to climate risk, ensuring the effective and efficient investment of public and private resources.

Jamaica’s population, infrastructure and economic assets are highly exposed to extreme weather, such as hurricanes, tropical storms and flooding events that are expected to become more intense and frequent. With many of these climate hazards now irreversible, the country’s priority is to adapt by building the resilience of its major infrastructure assets.

“Given Jamaica’s vulnerability to climate shocks, the cumulative cost over the years and future climate projections, JSRAT is an important data-driven addition to the analytical toolkit to aid assessment of climate risks, particularly with respect to critical infrastructure such as water, transport and energy.”

– Dr Wayne Henry, Director General of the Planning Institute of Jamaica.

The breakthrough predictive technology underpinning the tool is based on proven analytical methods developed by Oxford University. A global leader in the geospatial assessment of climate risks and infrastructure system resilience, the university has been one of the project’s lead technical delivery partners.

“The fundamental goal is to help unlock investment in climate adaptation. With limited resources and mounting needs, the Government of Jamaica will be able to use SRAT’s incredibly granular, precise and practical analytical capabilities to prioritise where infrastructure investment is needed most and attract the scale of private sector finance that has so far been missing until now, not only in the Caribbean but in climate adaptation worldwide.”

– Prof Jim Hall, Professor of Climate and Environmental Risks, University of Oxford.