Emergency Recovery Project
July 10, 2018
July 18, 2018
First Disbursement Date
July 30, 2018
June 01, 2023
The Emergency Recovery Project (US$ 55.2 million) finances equipment for first responders, repairs of shelters, housing, schools, and public buildings, more resilient energy and water supplies and a stronger emergency response system. This project also supports the capacity development of the National Recovery Program Bureau (NRPB), the bureau that oversees the implementation and management of projects financed by the Sint Maarten Trust Fund. On April 28, 2021, additional financing for US$45 million was approved, to cover financing gaps for repairs and equipment. The financing will also cover the cost of technical preparation for works, as well as NRPB staffing and operations from June 2020 until June 2023, originally not budgeted under ERP I.
The Emergency Recovery Project has four main activities:
Equipment and facilities for disaster first responders ($ 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 $45 million)
Additional Financing will cover gaps for repairs and equipment, technical preparation for works, and NRPB staffing and operations from June 2020 until June 2023.
-Sint Maarten is insured against tropical cyclones, earthquakes, and excess rainfall against under the Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility (CCRIF). In case disaster strikes, Sint Maarten is eligible for rapid payouts from the CCRIF.
-The Emergency Recovery Project financed the repairs of 109 homes through the Sint Maarten Housing Development Foundation. 160 additional homes were repaired under retroactive financing.
-The two police stations, which were heavily damaged by hurricane Irma, have been renovated and fortified to withstand major hurricanes.
-Fire station equipment and protective gear has been procured.
-The bulk of the shelters on the island have been repaired.
-The National Recovery Program Bureau has been established to oversee Trust Funded recovery projects and has been strengthened with additional capacity.
|Project Component||Target||Under Technical Assessment||On-going||Completed|
|Police Station Emergency Repairs||2|
|Police Station Structural Repairs||2|
|GEBE electricity and water system repairs|
In September 2017, Hurricane Irma left a trail of destruction in Sint Maarten. Damages and losses are estimated at US$ 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.