Emergency Recovery Project
July 10, 2018
July 18, 2018
First Disbursement Date
July 30, 2018
June 01, 2023
The Emergency Recovery Project (US$100.2 million - US$55 million approved July 2018 and US$45 million approved April 2021) finances equipment for first responders, repairs of shelters, housing, schools, restoring utilities services, and provision of critical equipment for first responders. The project also finances the operations and staffing of the National Recovery Program Bureau (NRPB), an independent administrative agency to oversee the implementation and coordination projects financed by the Trust Fund. As of September 2022, total project disbursement stands at US$65 million or 65%.
To continue supporting critical repair and reconstruction activities prioritized by the Government of Sint Maarten, the Trust Fund Steering Committee approved allocation of additional financing of US$19.5 million. This will help fund current gaps and provide NRPB with operating funds until December 2025, the proposed new project closing date.
The Emergency Recovery Project has four main activities:
Equipment and facilities for disaster first responders ($ 14.75 million):
With the financial support of the ERP, critical public facilities and four national agencies (the police, the fire service, the ambulance service, and the meteorological service) are repaired. Emergency shelters are renovated. Vehicles and communications equipment of emergency services are purchased and damaged equipment were replaced. Furthermore, disaster emergency services were trained and their organizations strengthened.
Resilience of utilities services ($ 11.6 million):
Financing focuses on the restoration of electricity services, such as upgrading transformer station houses; replacing and repairing street lighting; and increasing the performance of the power system in periods of natural disasters. Investments are made to increase the island’s water storage capacity to 2 days and restore pumphouses and micrometers.
Housing and public buildings repair ($ 19.85 million):
Privately-owned homes of the most vulnerable households selected based on socio-economic criteria are repaired, as well as subsidized housing provided by the Sint Maarten Housing Foundation. Furthermore, renovations of high-priority public buildings are being financed through this project.
Institutional support for reconstruction ($ 9 million):
This fund enables Sint Maarten to access risk insurance offered by Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility (CCRIF) and implement and coordinate projects. The Government of Sint Maarten has installed e.g. the National Recovery Program Bureau to execute the projects financed by the Trust Fund.
Additional Financing (US $45 million)
Additional Financing will cover gaps for repairs and equipment, technical preparation for works, and NRPB staffing and operations from June 2020 until June 2023.
-The project has extended the financing of Sint Maarten's premia for insurance coverage against disaster risks under the Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility until June 2023 and finances the country's membership of the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency.
-The Emergency Recovery Project financed the repairs of 427 of the 511 eligible homes (over 83% of the target). Repairs on an additional 6 social housing buildings containing 64 units began in January 2022 and on track to be completed.
-The two police stations, which were heavily damaged by hurricane Irma, have been renovated and fortified to withstand major hurricanes.
-Fire station equipment and protective gear has been procured.
-The bulk of the shelters on the island have been repaired.
- Retroactively financed the US$1.4 million restoration of Sint Maarten's Utility Company (GEBE) including 4 water tanks damaged by the hurricane. 9 km of trenching work for underground cabling of electrical power lines, conduits for optic fiber, and water pipes is currently underway.
-The National Recovery Program Bureau has been established to oversee Trust Funded recovery projects and has been strengthened with additional capacity.
|Project Component||Target||Under Technical Assessment||On-going||Completed|
|Police Station Emergency Repairs||2|
|Police Station Structural Repairs||2|
|GEBE electricity and water system repairs|
In September 2017, Hurricane Irma left a trail of destruction in Sint Maarten. Damages and losses are estimated at US$ 1.38 billion and US$ 1.35 billion respectively, affecting 90 percent of all infrastructure and large parts of the natural environment. The recovery needs are massive, and the country has limited capacities to manage large-scale resilient reconstruction projects.
Full operational capacity of first responders, including the police, firefighters, and the ambulance service, has been considerably hampered as their facilities and specialized equipment were severely damaged by the storm. As the island is in the ‘hurricane belt’ in the Caribbean, it is essential to restore the disaster preparedness of emergency services on short notice.
Housing and roof repairs, especially of the most vulnerable groups in society (such as low-income families and the elderly) are necessary, as well as the reconstruction of several public buildings that are critical for government operations, the provision of lifeline services and education.
The delivery of electricity and water services by the utilities company remains highly vulnerable to severe weather and climate shocks. Although 86 percent of low-voltage cables are located underground, above-ground networks are vulnerable to wind and blowing debris.