The Swaziland Environment Action Plan consists of strategies to address Swaziland’s environmental problems, including climate change. Agriculture forms the base of Swaziland’s economy, as a large part of the manufacturing sector is agro-based. Therefore diversification of economic activities is necessary if the country is to reduce its level of vulnerability to climate change. The health sector is likely to be adversely affected by climate change due to an increase in vector-borne diseases resulting from increased temperature and precipitation. Water resources and biodiversity have been recognized as resources in Swaziland at risk from climate change. In Swaziland’s First National Communication of 21 May 2002 adaptation options have been identified to address these issues.

Swaziland is the smallest country in the southern hemisphere with a total surface area of 17, 260 km2. It is situated in South Eastern Africa between the 25th and 28th parallels and longitudes 31° and 32° East. It is landlocked with access either via South Africa or Mozambique. There is great variation in Swaziland’s landscapes, geology and climate. The country has been divided into six physiographic zones which vary in terms of the altitude, landforms, climate, geology, soils and vegetation. These zones are the Highveld, Upper Middleveld, Lower Middleveld, Western Lowveld, Eastern Lowveld and the Lubombo Range.

The climate in Swaziland is generally sub-tropical with wet and hot summers and cool and dry winters. However, the country is disposed to natural disasters which disrupt this seasonal pattern. There was a severe drought during the period of 1989 until 1994, and the region has also experienced tropical cyclones and storms. Climate change is likely to affect the occurrence and scale of these disasters and their associated impacts.

SourcesFirst National Communication for Swaziland, 21 May 2002.

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Sand dams: a sustainable solution for water scarce regions

Sand dams were identified as one potential adaptation measure that could be piloted in Swaziland. The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Special Climate Change Fund (SCCF) is providing the government of Swaziland with technical support for a sand dam pilot project.

Swaziland- Second National Communication

The creation of a National Communication offers countries the opportunity to contribute with technically sound studies and information that can be used for designing mitigation and adaptation measures, and project proposals that can and will help increase their resilience to the impacts of climate change. Activities generally include: V&A assessments, Greenhouse Gas Inventory preparation, Mitigation Analysis or Education, and awareness raising activities.The ultimate goal is the integration of climate change considerations into relevant social, economic and environmental policies and actions.

Key vulnerabilities identified in Swaziland's Second National Communication (2012):

  • Agriculture
  • Water Resources
  • Biodiversity
  • Forests and Land Use Change
  • Public Health


Level of Intervention: 
Key Collaborators: 
POINT (31.135250852 -26.346270989)
Primary Beneficiaries: 
Through improved identification of national circumstances, government agencies and other actors will increase their abilities to insulate at risk urban and rural populations from the adverse effects of climate change.
Funding Source: 
Financing Amount: 
Assessments and Background Documents
Project Details: 

Potential Adaptation Measures identified in Swaziland's Second National Communication (2010):


  • Shifting planting periods involving research for planting dates and other management factors.
  • Drought resistant crops through diversifying cropping pattern and focussing on drought tolerant crops, through selection, testing and introducing crops such as cassava, pigeon pea, sisal, herp, sorghum, oil seeds such as cotton, sunflower and groundnuts and leguminous crops.
  • Locational change of livestock production through redistributing livestock according to suitability of AEZ by selecting animal according to their tolerance to changed climatic conditions for example concentrate beef cattle in lower, Middleveld and Lowveld because they have a high maximum temperature for performance inhibition, and concentrate daily cattle mainly in the Highveld and upper Middleveld where it is cooler
  • Irrigation support through developing small dams primarily for livestock and domestic water with supplementary irrigation for horticulture.

Water Resources

  • Reduction of water consumption at all levels through efficient water utilisation using water demand managements
  • Systems installed to predict and prevent effects of floods, droughts and tropical cyclones as well as for indicating the planning dates to coincide with the beginning of the rainy season for water related infrastructure
  • Integrated water resource management carried out in the country with establishment of river basin authorities and focusing on sectoral integration that takes into account competing and conflicts among various users and, geographical and economic social and environmental considerations
  • Introduced as a source of water for domestic, livestock and irrigation leading to increased crop production and food security especially under climate change


  • Restructuring the management of biodiversity
  • Strengthening of the national commitment to conserve Swaziland biodiversity
  • Investment in protection of ecosystems and their services
  • Building of innovative and adaptive biodiversity governance systems
  • Mitigation options
  • Improvements of the understanding of the impacts of climate change on biodiversity
  • Awareness of climate change impacts and capacity to respond strategy
  • Minimising the impacts of climate change on aquatic and semi aquatic species, communities and ecosystems, and indigenous terrestrial species
  • Impact of alien and invasive organisms on biodiversity in future climates and factoring the impacts of climate change on biodiversity into natural resource management and land use planning

Forests and Land Use Change

  • Sustainable forest management developed and introduced to communities and all stakeholders
  • Commercial forest companies and individual growers develop and introduce forest management practices that maintain biodiversity
  • Sustainable expansion of industrial forest areas in those locations in the Highveld with sufficient rainfall and low potential for other agricultural use
  • Integrated fire management framework involving assessment of laws and policies, fire prevention and education, fire preparedness and response, ecosystem restoration, recovery and maintenance and adaptive management, research and information
  • Alien invasive plant species comprehensive program using a variety of methods, including mechanical clearing, the use of herbicides and biological control.
  • Proper selection of suitable tree species on the basis of community needs for each of the ecological zones with research for specific tree species meeting specific situations
  • Improved infrastructure design for roads, bridges, dams and water reservoirs, and for housing to provide some comfort under possible increased temperatures


Expected Key Results and Outputs: 
  • Sustainable development and the integration of climate change concerns into medium- and long-term planning
  • Inventories of anthropogenic emissions by sources and removals by sinks of greenhouse gases
  • Measures contributing to addressing climate change
  • Research and systematic observation
  • Climate change impacts, adaptation measures and response strategies
  • Education, training and public awareness
Monitoring & Evaluation: 

In 1992, countries joined an international treaty, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, to cooperatively consider what they could do to limit average global temperature increases and the resulting climate change, and to cope with whatever impacts were, by then, inevitable.

Parties to the Convention must submit national reports on implementation of the Convention to the Conference of the Parties (COP). The required contents of national communications and the timetable for their submission are different for Annex I and non-Annex I Parties. This is in accordance with the principle of "common but differentiated responsibilities" enshrined in the Convention.

The core elements of the national communications for both Annex I and non-Annex I Parties are information on emissions and removals of greenhouse gases (GHGs) and details of the activities a Party has undertaken to implement the Convention. National communications usually contain information on national circumstances, vulnerability assessment, financial resources and transfer of technology, and education, training and public awareness.

Since 1994, governments have invested significant time and resources in the preparation, collection and validation of data on GHG emissions, and the COP has made determined efforts to improve the quality and consistency of the data, which are ensured by established guidelines for reporting. Non-Annex I Parties receive financial and technical assistance in preparing their national communications, facilitated by the UNFCCC secretariat.

Yamil Bonduki
Coordinator, National Communications Support Programme (NCSP)
Swaziland Ministry of Tourism and Environment
Mr. Emmanuel Dumisani Dlamini
Country Contact
Sithembiso Hlatshwako
CO Focal Point
Climate-Related Hazards Addressed: 
Funding Source Short Code: 
Project Status: 

Swaziland Project Document 3603 (March 2012)

The Project Document, from March 2012, gives detailed information on the UNDP Swaziland project. The ProDoc includes a Situation Analysis, with the Global, National and Regional Context, Climate Change Context, Past and Ongoing Activities in the country, Related Donor Assistance, and a Barrier Analysis. Also included is the Project Strategy, Operational Approach, Results and Resources Framework, Budget and Annual Work Plan, Management Arrangements and Coordination Structures, the Monitoring Framework and Evaluation and the Legal Context.

Adapting Water Resource Management In Swaziland To Manage Expected Climate Change

Climate change in Swaziland is expected to lead to overall warming and drying, with a greater frequency and intensity of droughts as well as floods. The negative impacts on the agricultural and water sector are likely to be considerable. Firstly, yields of staple food crops such as maize, sorghum and beans are likely to decrease, thereby threatening national food security. Secondly, surface flows in rivers and streams are likely to have greater variation, with lower base-flows in the dry season, potentially resulting in water shortages for domestic, industrial and agricultural use. And thirdly, groundwater reserves, which are an important source of water for many rural communities, may be reduced as a result of increased rainfall intensity and concomitant increases in surface runoff. These negative impacts of climate change will be exacerbated by baseline conditions of widespread poverty (63% of the population), high unemployment (40%), a high prevalence of HIV (26% of adults), and widespread land degradation as a result of deforestation, alien plant invasions and overstocking of livestock.

The goal of the project is to ensure that the management of Swaziland’s water resources is adapted to take into account the anticipated impacts of climate change. To this end, the principles of Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM) will be used within the project, and importantly, climate change risks will be incorporated into this management approach. To facilitate this process, national dialogue between a wide-range of stakeholders from different sectors will be promoted. In addition, information generated and lessons learned from pilot-scale adaptation measures funded by the project, will assist policy implementation for effective adaptation planning and climate risk management in the water sector. These adaptation measures will be focused on improving access to water in rural communities using two methods, namely: i) piloting improved land-use practices that increase rates of water infiltration into soils; and ii) introducing rainwater harvesting techniques. Such measures will have the long-term effect of recharging groundwater levels and increasing surface flow in rivers and streams during the dry season as well as providing communities with improved access to water for both irrigation and drinking purposes. Additionally, by piloting such adaptation measures, communities will be better equipped to manage climate risks. Lastly, negotiators for Swaziland will be trained to ensure that climate change risks are an integral part of discussions on trans-boundary river management with neighbouring states

Level of Intervention: 
Key Collaborators: 
Thematic Area: 
POINT (31.508782954 -26.4581262176)
Primary Beneficiaries: 
Swazi rural communities
Funding Source: 
Financing Amount: 
Co-Financing Total: 
Project Details: 

The project will implement priority interventions at specific locations within the three international river basins (namely Maputo, Umbulezi and Incomati) in the country. The demonstration sites were identified through an extensive consultative process held at both the national and community levels.

Amongst other benefits, the project will deliver adaptation benefits in relation to water resources management that are sustainable in the face of expected climate change. Adaptation benefits will also arise through the protection of livelihoods from adverse climate change impacts on water resources. Additionally, through its activities, the project will contribute to the preservation and conservation of nationally important ecosystems

The project will also promote rainwater harvesting technologies and techniques through which to improve rainwater infiltration rates in demonstration sites. These on-the-ground activities are likely to provide benefits such as: i) improving access to water for sanitation and drinking purposes; ii) preventing the decline of the water table, iii) reducing pumping costs; and iv) improving agricultural productivity by increasing the availability of water for irrigation purposes (with positive consequences for food security and income streams). The project’s restoration and reforestation activities will increase vegetation cover over the soil, thereby resulting in an improvement in rainfall infiltration and retention as well as a reduction in soil erosion and siltation of dams and reservoirs

The project will work with institutions such as the Ministry of Natural Resources and Energy, Ministry of Tourism and Environment, the National Water Authority (NWA), Komati Basin Authority, Department of Meteorology (MET), Ministry of Agriculture (MOA), Swaziland Water and Agricultural Development Enterprises (SWADE) and Swaziland Environmental Authority (SEA) as well as sectoral ministries who have a stake in water resources management, to develop and disseminate climate change analysis and its implications for the draft National Water Policy and transboundary water resources management. The PPG phase will map out roles and responsibilities of these various stakeholder groups in the project.

The project will be executed by the Department of Water Affairs (Ministry of Natural Resources and Energy), which will work closely with the Ministry of Tourism and Environment and Department of Meteorology. Executing partners will be the Ministry of Agriculture, particularly the extension department, and the Swaziland Water and Agricultural Development Enterprise (SWADE) that will coordinate the NGOs on the ground.

Expected Key Results and Outputs: 

The goal of the project is to ensure that the management of Swaziland’s water resources is adapted to take into account the anticipated impacts of climate change. The objective of the project is to promote the implementation of national and trans-boundary IWRM that is sustainable and equitable given expected climate change.

Outcome 1: Institutional capacity for climate change adaptation strengthened through the integration of climate change risks into national water resources management policies and the establishment of inter-sectoral-coordination mechanisms based on inclusive and informed national dialogue

  • Output 1.1: Key scientific knowledge gaps on climate change impacts within the water sector defined, targeted research to fill knowledge gaps carried out, climate change response options identified, and main findings and strategic recommendations disseminated to at least twenty (20) relevant organisations across sectors
  • Output 1.2: A set of tailor-made climate change response measures related to national (and trans-boundary) water management identified and integrated into at least three (3) national level policies related to water resources management (e.g. NWP, IWRMP, draft National Climate Change Policy) through a series of national policy dialogue workshops (incl. with organisations  listed under Output 1.1 and using strategic recommendations from that output
  • Output 1.3: Institutional needs for inter-sectoral cooperation identified (through national dialogue - Output 1.2), appropriate national  inter-sectoral coordination mechanism clearly defined, establishment/ strengthening of national coordination mechanism supported and capacity of key staff/ stakeholders strengthened through at least three (3) targeted training courses on inter-sectoral coordination

Outcome 2: Climate change risk management measures integrated into national water and agricultural programmes and implemented in pilot projects to promote adaptation on the ground.

  • Output2.1: Guidelines for mainstreaming climate change risks into key national policies (NWP, IWRMP, NCCP) developed, toolkits on practical application of climate change response measures (identified through Output 1.2) developed and at least five (5) targeted training courses on toolkit application delivered
  • Output 2.2: Programme/ project specific climate change risks and tailor-made response measures identified and integrated into at least three (3) major management/ investment plans implemented in Swaziland (incl. KDDP, LUSIP and CDPs developed under the GEF SLM programme implemented by SWADE)
  • Output 2.3: Capacity of key stakeholders and water resources management and/or agricultural development practitioners to integrate climate change risks into their activities strengthened by incorporating the climate risks/responses measures (identified under Output 2.2) into the ongoing training courses offered as part of ongoing national programmes (e.g. KDDP, LUSIP).     
  • Output 2.4: Community based climate resilience projects implemented in pilot sites, including the installation of rainwater harvesting systems in at least four (4) identified communities/ areas and rainwater infiltration improvement schemes (incl. reforestation) in at least four (4) communities/areas

Outcome 3: Negotiations on trans-boundary water management for the Incomati, Maputo and Umbeluzi river basins informed by climate change risk analysis.

  • Output 3.1: Climate change impacts on trans-boundary water resource management (TBWRM) and negotiation options assessed, tailor-made  (short-, mid- and long-term) TBWRM strategy paper for Swaziland developed through consultations with key stakeholders (as integral part of national policy dialogue - Output 1.2) and position paper for Swaziland TWRM negotiation team(s) jointly developed (with negotiators)
  • Output 3.2: Targeted information briefs on projected climate change impacts on TBWRM developed and disseminated to senior decision-makers in at least twenty (20) relevant organisations, including key water user groups


Monitoring & Evaluation: 

Project M&E procedures will be designed and conducted by the project team and the UNDP-Country Office, in accordance with established UNDP-GEF procedures. The principal components of the Monitoring and Evaluation Plan are outlines using the different activities within the project.

Project Inception Phase

  • A Project Inception Workshop will be held within 2 months after the Project Management Unit (PMU) is established, with participation of a wide range of stakeholders, those with assigned roles in the project organisation structure, UNDP.  The Inception Workshop is crucial to building ownership for the project results, sensitize the stakeholders about the project objective and outcomes, and to facilitate further inputs in the project’s overall work plan to ensure that the project will fit sufficiently within the current context of Swaziland and its overall development plans and strategies.
  • The Inception Workshop should address a number of key issues including:
  1. Assist all partners to fully understand and take ownership of the project
  2. Review the project log-frame and agree on the indicators, targets and their means of verification, and review and revises assumptions and risks if necessary,
  3. Discuss financial reporting procedures and obligations, and arrangements for annual audit.
  4. Based on the project results framework and the relevant GEF Tracking Tool as appropriate, review the first annual work plan.
  5. Agree on a set of recommendations to be tabled at the PB meeting.  The first PB meeting should be held soon after the inception workshop to review a set of recommendations from the inception workshop and make necessary decisions for the project. 


  • Progress and Financial Report will be prepared by the Project Team and submitted to UNDP via the Implementing Partner (DWA/MNRE).  Quartery Reports is prepared in the format advised by UNDP and should contain suffiicent information to keep track of the project progress in the various monitoring mechanisms, including the following:
  • Progress will be monitored in the UNDP Enhanced Results Based Managment Platform.
  • Based on the initial risk analysis submitted, the risk log shall be regularly updated in ATLAS.  Risks become critical when the impact and probability are high. 
  • Based on the information recorded in ATLAS, a Project Progress Reports (PPR) can be generated in the Executive Snapshot.
  • Other ATLAS logs can be used to monitor inter alia issues, lessons learned. The use of these functions is a key indicator in the UNDP Executive Balanced Scorecard.


Annual Project Review/Project Implementation Reports (APR/PIR): This key report is prepared to monitor progress made since project start and in particular for the previous reporting period.  The APR/PIR combines both UNDP and GEF’s annual reporting requirements.

The APR/PIR includes, but is not limited to, reporting on the following:

  • Progress made toward project objective and project outcomes - each with indicators, baseline data and end-of-project targets (cumulative).
  • Project outputs delivered per project outcome (annual).
  • Lesson learned/good practice.
  • Financial delivery status.  For mid-term and final PIR, the co-financing information will be also included.
  • Risk and adaptive management.

Mid-term of project cycle:

The project will undergo an independent Mid-Term Evaluation (MTE) at the mid-point of project implementation. The Mid-Term Evaluation will determine progress being made toward the achievement of outcomes and will identify course correction if needed.  It will focus on the effectiveness, efficiency and timeliness of project implementation; will highlight issues requiring decisions and actions; and will present initial lessons learned about project design, implementation and management.

End of Project:

An independent Final Evaluation will take place three months prior to the project’s operational closure and will be undertaken in accordance with UNDP and GEF guidance. The final evaluation will focus on the delivery of the project’s results as initially planned (and as corrected after the mid-term evaluation, if any such correction took place).  The final evaluation will look at impact and sustainability of results, including the contribution to capacity development and the achievement of climate change adaptation benefits that the project aims to achieve.  The relevant Tracking Tools will also be completed during the final evaluation

The Terminal Evaluation should also provide recommendations for follow-up activities and requires a management response which should be uploaded to PIMS and to the UNDP Evaluation Office Evaluation Resource Center (ERC)

During the last three months, the project team will prepare the Project Terminal Report. This comprehensive report will summarize the results achieved (objectives, outcomes, outputs), lessons learned, problems met and areas where results may not have been achieved.  It will also lay out recommendations for any further steps that may need to be taken to ensure sustainability and replicability of the project’s results.

Learning and Knowledge Sharing

Results from the project will be disseminated within and beyond the project intervention zone through existing information sharing networks and forums. The project will identify and participate, as relevant and appropriate, in scientific, policy-based and/or any other networks, which may be of benefit to project implementation though lessons learned. The project will identify, analyze, and share lessons learned that might be beneficial in the design and implementation of similar future projects.

Akiko Yamamoto
Regional Technical Advisor
Sithembiso Hlatshwako
CO Focal Point
Climate-Related Hazards Addressed: 
Funding Source Short Code: 
Project Status: