A comparative analysis of ecosystem-based adaptation and engineering options for Lami Town, Fiji
The narrow coastal area of Lami Town, Fiji, is surrounded by steep hills with three rivers flowing to the ocean, making it highly susceptible to flooding and erosion. This synthesis report presents a cost-benefit assessment of four adaptation scenarios to reduce Lami Town's vulnerability to flooding and erosion, both of which are projected to increase due to climate change. These four adaptation scenarios represent the spectrum of ecosystem-based and engineering-based adaptation options. Historically, engineering-based solutions such as building structures to directly increase protection from waves and flooding have been predominantly used. However, ecosystem-based adaptation approaches are increasingly recognized as they provide additional benefits beyond solely reducing the identified threat. For example, key habitats such as coral reefs, mangroves, seagrasses, and forests offer natural protection from storms, and also provide ecosystem services, supporting fisheries and tourism. This report compares the cost-benefit of each adaptation scenario in relation to the effectiveness at avoiding damages, provides key recommendations, and a step-by-step process for decision making.