El Niño support for Timor-Leste and the Pacific

  • Joint media release with:
  • The Hon Pat Conroy MP, Minister for International Development and the Pacific

Australia is investing $5 million to help Timor-Leste and the Pacific prepare for and respond to the early impacts of El Niño.

Our region is experiencing the effects of climate change and, in 2024, climate-related hazards and disasters are expected to intensify. The El Niño system brings extremely dry conditions to some areas of the region and wild weather to others.

In Timor-Leste, drought is impacting agriculture, freshwater availability and food security. Countries in the Pacific are facing similar challenges due to increased cyclone activity and flooding.

Australia is supporting the pre-positioning of non-food items, water conservation and storage, establish water systems and support food security. We are doing this as part of our partnership with the Australian Red Cross and the Australian Humanitarian Partnership, which works with communities.

This responds to our Timor-Leste and Pacific partners' calls for early action, and concrete support to address the impacts of climate change. It will protect people's lives and livelihoods, reduce costs and allow communities to recover better and faster from disasters.

Australia also welcomes the release of USD2 million from the UN Central Emergency Response Fund to respond to El Niño-related drought in Timor-Leste.

Quote attributable to Minister for Foreign Affairs, Senator the Hon Penny Wong:

"Climate change threatens the livelihoods, security and wellbeing of Timor-Leste and the Pacific.

"In partnership with the Pacific and Timor-Leste, we stand with our region to meet the challenges of climate change and El Niño."

Quote attributable to Minister for International Development and the Pacific, the Hon Pat Conroy MP:

"By investing in locally led early response systems, we aim to reduce the humanitarian impacts of any disasters that face the Pacific and Timor-Leste. This delivers on Australia's commitment to help Pacific partners and communities adapt to the impacts of climate change.

"Australia's support to build resilience to crises is closely aligned with the Pacific's ambitions and commitments, including under the Boe Declaration and the 2050 Strategy for the Blue Pacific Continent."

Media enquiries

  • Minister's office: (02) 6277 7500
  • DFAT Media Liaison: (02) 6261 1555