17 Jul 2012

3D land model helps Solomons climate change discussions

2:27 pm on 17 July 2012

A three-D model is helping a coastal community in Solomon Islands' Choiseul Province plan for climate change and the impact from mining.

Villagers from Boe Boe built and painted the large-scale replica of their village and surrounding land, allowing them a graphic view of the effect of rising seas and nickel mining.

Jimmy Kereseka who oversees the project for the Lauru Land Conference of Tribal Communities says the 400-strong population of Boe Boe uses the model as a tool to help limit the impact of mining and adapt to climate change.

"In a flat map, the people don't really see their land, but with that 3D model it's a reality on the table for them. So now they plan where the gardens will be, they know that climate change is real and they will not build houses by the sea, but think of the future and move uphill."

Jimmy Kereseka says the villagers have also used the model to negotiate bigger conservation areas with mining companies and there are hopes similar models can be constructed for the wider region.