Taxonomy Term List
Enhanced climate resilience in the Trois-Rivières region of Haiti through integrated flood management
- Implement agroforestry systems and rehabilitate ‘water towers’ through reforestation of degraded landscapes at priority intervention sites;
- Enhance technical and institutional capacity for productive climate-resilient land management at the national and local levels; and to
- Establish the required governance framework for integrated water resources management (IWRM) to support the climate-resilient land management systems and facilitate sustainable use and management of water resources over the long term.
Monitoring and evaluation at the project level will be carried out in accordance with UNDP requirements contained in the UNDP Operations and Programs Policies and Procedures. and in the UNDP Evaluation Policy . Additional specific monitoring and evaluation requirements of the Adaptation Fund will also be implemented in accordance with its Monitoring and Evaluation Policy and other relevant policies. In addition, the project will engage in other monitoring and evaluation activities deemed necessary to support adaptive management of the project.
The project results indicated in the project results framework of the Project Document will be monitored annually and periodically evaluated during the execution of the project to ensure that the project achieves those results.
Supported by Component 3, the monitoring plan will facilitate learning and ensure that knowledge is widely shared and disseminated to support scaling up and replication of project results.
*The UNDP country office will retain all monitoring and evaluation records for this project – including annual Project Implementation Reports (PPR), the project’s Mid-term Review, and Final Evaluation – for up to seven years after the project's economic closure to support ex post evaluations conducted by the UNDP Independent Evaluation Office and the Office of Independent Evaluation of the Adaptation Fund.
'Launch of project "AdaptarC"', November 2018
Increased resilience and adaptive capacity of the most vulnerable communities to climate change in Forested Guinea
The Republic of Guinea is a coastal country situated in West Africa, on the Atlantic Coast, sharing its northern border with Guinea-Bissau, Senegal and Mali and its southern border with Sierra Leone, Liberia, and Ivory Coast. Its geographical location situates it at the crossroads of the major West African climatic groups, including the Guinean coastal climate, the Sudanese climate and the humid tropical climate at the edge of the equatorial climate.
The country is likely to be heavily impacted by climate change, and some effects are already being observed. For example, the seasonal distribution of rainfall and its intensity has changed in recent decades. Rising temperatures and changes in regional rainfall may continue to lead to flooding and have the potential to bring drought and extended dry spells in some regions.
The natural region of Forested Guinea, covering 23% of the country, is particularly fragile. Communities are especially vulnerable due to several deep-rooted factors such as; highest rate incidence of poverty in the country (~67% against a national average of 43,7 %); poor levels of financial and technical capacities of the farming communities and the institutions mandated to support rural development; dependence on rain fed agriculture (~97% of cultivated lands are rainfed) which is the primary source of livelihood and critical for food security; and poor agriculture/land management practices that contribute to degradation of agricultural landscapes, contribute to climate change and have negative effects on the overall crop productivity.
Forest Guinea, however, has a strong potential for agricultural development: out of 700,000 ha of agricultural lands that can be developed, including 400,000 ha of inventoried and geo-referenced lowlands, only 30,200 ha are partially developed and 1,000 ha in total water control in the finishing phase in Koundian.
The proposed long-term solution of this project is to strengthen the resilience and adaptive capacities of the most vulnerable local communities (with a focus on youth and women) in Forested Guinea, to face climate change and improve self-sufficiency in basic living needs of rural communities and create conditions to enable its replication.
The project results, corresponding indicators and mid-term and end-of-project targets in the project results framework will be monitored annually and evaluated periodically during project implementation. The project monitoring and evaluation plan will also facilitate learning and ensure knowledge is shared and widely disseminated to support the scaling up and replication of project results.
Project-level monitoring and evaluation will be undertaken in compliance with UNDP requirements as outlined in the UNDP POPP (including guidance on GEF project revisions) and UNDP Evaluation Policy. Additional mandatory GEF-specific M&E requirements will be undertaken in accordance with the GEF Monitoring Policy and the GEF Evaluation Policy and other relevant GEF policies.
Minimum project monitoring and reporting requirements, as required by the GEF:
- Inception Workshop and Report
- Annual GEF Project Implementation Report (PIR)
- Independent Mid-term Review (MTR)
- Terminal Evaluation (TE)
The project’s terminal GEF PIR along with the Terminal Evaluation report and corresponding management response will serve as the final project report package. The final project report package shall be discussed with the Project Board during an end-of-project review meeting to discuss lesson learned and opportunities for scaling up.
The Republic of Haiti is extremely vulnerable to climate change, particularly to the impacts of recurrent floods and droughts.
Reductions in freshwater availability in the country have been attributed to observed increases in the duration and intensity of drought periods, resulting in reduced water yield in springs, wells, and rivers. Reductions in groundwater resources are further compounded by an increase in the intensity of rainfall events, which, when coupled with extensive ecosystem degradation in critical recharge zones, reduce rainwater infiltration and subsequent aquifer recharge.
This project (2022 - 2027) will strengthen the resilience of vulnerable rural and peri-urban communities in the South-East (Sud-Est) Department of Haiti against projected impacts of climate change on drinking water availability and access, through three interrelated components:
1. Improved understanding and awareness of the water sector's vulnerability to climate change;
2. Strengthened regulatory and policy frameworks, as well as institutional capacities at national, regional and local levels for the improved management of drinking water under climate change conditions; and
3. Identification and promotion of practices for the conservation, management and supply of drinking water adapted to climate change conditions.
Climate change is exacerbating existing pressures on drinking water resources in Haiti, negatively affecting the lives and wellbeing of vulnerable communities.
The preferred solution is to increase water availability in target watersheds in the country’s South-East Department by conserving critical water recharge zones and aquifers, while enhancing the climate resilience of water distribution and storage infrastructure to ensure reliable access to water resources for target communities. These interventions will be supported by strengthened institutional and regulatory systems to promote the sustainable management of water resources and infrastructure.
This project will achieve the preferred solution through three interrelated components — specifically:
- Component 1 — Improved understanding and awareness of the water sector's vulnerability to climate change;
- Component 2 — Strengthened regulatory and policy frameworks, as well as institutional capacities at national, regional and local levels for the improved management of drinking water under climate change conditions; and
- Component 3 — Identification and promotion of practices for the conservation, management and supply of drinking water adapted to climate change conditions.
Under these three components, the proposed project’s climate change adaptation strategy will include:
i) Implementing on-the-ground interventions to improve aquifer recharge and climate-proof drinking water supply (such as agroforestry, the protection of water sources and aquifer recharge areas, percolation tanks and rainwater harvesting systems);
ii) Strengthening local capacities for climate-resilient water resource management through awareness raising and knowledge generation; and
iii) Developing support tools and strengthening technical/institutional capacities of decision-makers at the national and regional level to promote the mainstreaming of climate change into the planning and management of drinking water and associated natural resources in Haiti.
The project will target vulnerable areas of the country’s South-East Department, specifically the catchment areas, recharge zones and springs of the Cresson, Bodarie, Préchet, Cascade Pichon and K-Royer Drinking Water Supply Systems (SAEPs). These five target SAEPs were selected according to a methodology defined and developed collaboratively between the Government of Haiti (GoH), UNDP Haiti and consultants on the PPG Team.
Adaptation interventions to be implemented under the project components will positively impact local communities in these areas by reducing their vulnerability and increasing their resilience to droughts and floods.
By providing tools and developing capacities for the improved management of drinking water resources, project interventions will enable ~ 130,000 direct beneficiaries — reliant on the abovementioned drinking water sources — to benefit from more reliably available drinking water throughout the year under the context of increasingly long and intense drought periods that are expected to result from climate change.
The components and related interventions form part of the project’s Theory of Change outlined in the Project Document, which maps out the project’s baseline problem, assumptions, barriers, risks, components, outputs, outcomes, and objectives.
Component 1: Improved understanding and awareness of the water sector vulnerability to climate change
Outcome 1.1: Improved awareness raising and knowledge and information management systems for the water sector to plan and respond to the impacts of climate change.
Output 1.1.1: Assessments, with gender-specific criteria, carried out at the national level to demonstrate the implications of different climate change scenarios on the availability of water.
Output 1.1.2: A continuous information- and knowledge-generation and dissemination system implemented to inform communities and the GoH on water management adaptation strategies and climate-resilient water supply.
Output 1.1.3: Cost-benefit analyses of different adaptation strategies developed as per the predicted climate change scenarios identified under Output 1.1.1.
Output 1.1.4: Training programmes implemented for regional and national institutions on the extent of climate change impacts on freshwater availability — including methodologies and application of vulnerability assessments (as developed under Output 1.2.1 below) and adaptation solutions.
Output 1.1.5: Inventory and quality characterisation of groundwater aquifers in the target area carried out by OREPA Sud.
Output 1.1.6: Scientific and technical studies on the impacts of climate change and options for adaptation management in the target area conducted, informing local decision-making on climate-resilient water supply.
Outcome 1.2: Target communities prepared to effectively plan responses to climate change impacts on their access to drinking water.
Output 1.2.1: Methodologies and instruments developed for community-level vulnerability assessments (VAs) of drinking water supply.
Output 1.2.2: Participatory climate change vulnerability assessments (VAs) carried out in the project’s target communities.
Output 1.2.3: Integrated water resource modelling conducted to demonstrate the projected long-term impacts of climate change on biodiversity, ecosystems, and urban systems, as well as the relationships between these aspects and drinking water availability at the landscape level.
Component 2: Strengthening of the regulatory, policy and institutional capacity framework at national, regional, and local levels for the effective management of drinking water under climate change conditions
Outcome 2.1: Key regulatory and policy instruments adjusted to consider the implications of climate change for drinking water supply and promote adaptive community-based management, knowledge generation and dissemination
Output 2.1.1: Two regulatory instruments adjusted to account for the evolving contextual needs and conditions resulting from climate change.
Output 2.1.2: Strategic plans revised by sub-national regulatory institutions to prioritise adaptation interventions based on evaluations of climate change impacts on water supply vulnerability.
Output 2.1.3: Frameworks and instruments developed and applied for planning and coordination between national, regional, private and community-based organisations.
Outcome 2.2: Increased capacities in priority institutional stakeholders (DINEPA, OREPA Sud, CAEPAs and CTEs) with regards to the technical aspects of water resource management, territorial land-use planning, as well as management and application of information on water resources and climate change threats.
Output 2.2.1: Targeted programmes implemented to strengthen technical capacity of relevant institutions to incorporate climate change data into planning and management.
Output 2.2.2: Equipment provided to support the efficient application of technical capacity developed by training workshops.
Outcome 2.3: Target communities equipped with instruments and mechanisms that ensure the sustainable management of water resources and associated infrastructure, as well as specific strategies to target female-headed households.
Output 2.3.1: Community-based strategic and operational plans, with gender-specific criteria, developed to ensure the climate resilience of drinking water access.
Output 2.3.2: Consultative and consensus-based community-level engagement on land-use planning conducted, and training programmes developed, for sustainable land uses in drainage and recharge zones to ensure the climate resilience of drinking water recharge.
Output 2.3.3: Programmes implemented to strengthen organisational capacities and awareness of community-level stakeholders and organisations — reflecting gender-specific differences and promoting the equitable management of water resources and supply infrastructure under climate change conditions.
Component 3. Identification and promotion of practices for the conservation, management and supply of drinking water adapted to predicted climate change scenarios
Outcome 3.1: Reliable access to drinking water ensured for target communities and households as a result of the implementation of climate change adaptation measures.
Output 3.1.1: 4,540 ha of aquifer recharge zones rehabilitated within the five target SAEPs — of which 700 ha is restored through agroforestry.
Output 3.1.2: Gabions , percolation tanks , contour bunds and, septic tanks constructed to promote aquifer recharge and to reinforce the protection of the five target Drinking Water Supply Systems (SAEPs).
Output 3.1.3: Rooftop water harvesting systems and household cisterns installed in 350 households in target communities.
Output 3.1.4: Framework for financial plans for O&M of the five target SAEPs to improve water-use efficiency and distribution, accompanied by awareness-raising and advocacy programmes.
Output 3.1.5: Programmes for treating water supplies with sodium hypochlorite implemented to reduce water pollution-related health risks.
Project results, indicators and targets will be monitored annually and evaluated periodically during implementation. Monitoring and evaluation will be undertaken in compliance with UNDP requirements as outlined in the UNDP POPP and UNDP Evaluation Policy. Additional GEF-specific M&E requirements will be undertaken in accordance with the GEF M&E policy and other relevant GEF policies.
In addition to these mandatory UNDP and GEF M&E requirements, other M&E activities deemed necessary to support project-level adaptive management will be agreed – including during the project’s Inception Workshop (to be held within 2 months from the date of First Disbursement) and will be detailed in the Inception Report.
The GEF Core indicators included as Annex of the project document will be used to monitor global environmental benefits and will be updated for reporting to the GEF prior to MTR and TE. The project team is responsible for updating the indicator status.
Key monitoring and reporting requirements:
· Inception Workshop and Report
· Annual GEF Project Implementation Reports
· Independent Mid-term Review
· Terminal Evaluation (to be made publicly available in English on UNDP’s Evaluation Resource Centre)
· Final Report Package: Final Project Implementation Report, along with the Terminal Evaluation and corresponding management response
Rwanda is among the most vulnerable countries to the effects of climate change in the world. Higher incidents of irregular rainy seasons, droughts, landslides and floods have exacerbated the impacts of historically degraded ecosystems to significantly increase vulnerability to climate risks for most rural households. COVID-19 has arisen as a challenge that amplifies the vulnerability of the country, which also poses a risk to efforts to addressing climate change impacts. These changes will affect agriculture, water resources, ecosystems, energy systems and human health, causing an estimated annual economic cost of about 1% of GDP by 2030. Left unchecked, these impacts will particularly erode the benefits of the rural settlement programme (Imidugudu), adopted by government to catalyse urbanization and economic development in the rural areas. Such loses can be avoided by integrating climate risks and adaptation measures during the planning, design and implementation of the programme, to avoid maladaptation and ‘lock-in’. Uptake of these measures are hampered by four barriers: i) Technical institutions and communities have limited technical capacity to generate current and diversified knowledge and climate information to integrate climate risks into the planning, design and implementation of the Imidugudu program. ii) The resource poor beneficiaries of the rural settlement programme lack the means to invest in available climate smart technologies and solutions to integrate climate risk into the Imidugudu and diversify and sustain livelihoods in the face of climate change; iii) the country’s policy space inadequately caters for the integration of climate risks into the Imidugudu programmes, exacerbated by weak capacity for cross sectoral coordination at District level; iv) Beneficiaries of the rural settlement programme and their supporting technical institutions have inadequate knowledge management and M&E.
The "Ecosystems/Landscape approach to climate proof the Rural Settlement Program of Rwanda" project puts Rwanda’s Rural Settlement Programme (Imidugudu) on a climate-resilient pathway to secure the programme’s development gains in the face of uncertainties emanating from climate change, and contributes to the country’s recovery from the impacts of COVID-19. This project will demonstrate how a climate-resilient pathway can be achieved at the national level by implementing four outcomes that collectively tackle exposure and sensitivity to climate risks at the landscape. The project will provide technical skills, more accurate and relevant short to long-term climate information, tools, plans, methods and institutional and policy conditions to create and sustain climate resilient livelihoods for select communities, benefiting a total of 2,211,600 people (50% women). It will be implemented by the Rwanda Environment Management Authority in partnerships with the Rwanda Housing Authority, Meteo Rwanda and the Local District Councils (Kirehe and Gakenke).
Outcome 1: Institutional and community capacities for planning for landscape approach enhanced to climate-proof Imidugudu.
This outcome will support climate informed planning as the basis for integrating climate risks into the rural settlement programmes and the associated livelihoods. It will provide communities in the four project areas, their supporting technical institutions and the private sector (builders, suppliers of building materials, contractors within the Imidugudu programme) with skills, awareness and decision-making tools to advance understanding of how vulnerability of livelihoods, local economies and the Imidugudu program are intertwined with the state of the natural systems. The stakeholders will use the information and knowledge to design alternative “climate proofed” Imidugudu plans; develop ecosystems-based adaptation plans as the basis for nature based solutions to flood and erosion control, including river bank and land stabilization in catchment areas; and design climate advisory services as decision-support tool to manage negative impacts of risks to livelihoods. The outcome will therefore lay the basis for the implementation of the other three outcomes (2 to 4), which will utilize the skills and tools throughout the project, thus contributing to, and integrating with all other outcomes. It will also lay the foundation for scaling up of the climate-proofing models throughout the country (by training staff and the relevant private sector players at the national level). Outcome 1 is delivered through five outputs, described below.
Output 1.1: Training programmes and their sustainability mechanisms designed and delivered to provide specialized technical skills and awareness on landscape approaches to climate risk management for technical staff of all relevant Departments and community groups: Enhancing capacities for planning, coordination and implementation in a sustained process at the local level is critical to guarantee effective climate adaptation. Under this output, the project will provide gender and COVID-19 responsive training to government technical staff, communities and the relevant private sector (serving the building sector) in climate risk management within the EbA and climate proofing Imidugudu contexts for implementation, further scaling up and sustainability. To ensure the sustainability of the training and skills development, the programme will be embedded into the Twigire Muhinzi extension services described under Box 3. The following themes will be covered, with each module integrating relevant gender aspects and any new measures necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic and the response measures:
Downscaling climate information for local level planning – National and district level training to support outputs 1.3, 1.4 and 2.3
Developing ecosystems-based adaptation plans – Community level training to support output 1.4, 2.1 and 2.2.
Climate-risk assessments methods – district and community level training to support outputs 1.3, 1.4 and 1.5.
Climate proofing Imidugudu models – definition of concept and requirements for its roll out – national level training to support output 1.1, 2.3 and outcomes 3 and 4.
Participatory Integrated Climate Smart Agriculture (PICSA) as a tool for climate information and decision-making tools to support planning of Imidugudu and community-based adaptation measures applied in four communities – local level training to support output 1.5 and implementation of outcomes 2 and 4.
Climate smart technologies for rehabilitating degraded/ unproductive land via agro-ecological interventions to reverse the effects of unsustainable agricultural practices – local level training to support output 2.1.
Climate smart technologies to protect and rehabilitate ecologically sensitive segments of the landscape such as hills, river banks and lake shores, wetlands, watersheds, etc. – local level training to support output 2.2.
Practical measures to green the rural settlements in line with an updated Greening and Climate Proofing Toolkit – district and local level training to support outputs 2.3.
Diversifying livestock management systems – district and local level training to support output 2.1.
Financial literacy - existing value chains and their requirements, existing financial institutions and their loan/subsidy packages and tips on how to practically join/engage with them – local level training to support implementation of output 2.5.
Radical and progressive terracing techniques, other soil and water conservation techniques, agroforestry, plant husbandry and watershed services – district and local level training to support outputs 2.1 and 2.2.
Gender mainstreaming in development programmes – importance, methods and benefits – local level training to support the whole project.
Policies and local level implications on livelihood systems, why it is important that everyone pays attention to, and contributes to policy reforms e.g. awareness raising on the on-going land reforms - the new restructuring of land use planning and implementation from national to local levels, revised land policy and land law (2019), which have impacts on the implementation of the Imidugudu programme. Local level training to support the all the outputs.
Training on ecosystems based adaptation will be conducted in very close coordination with two on-going projects - Reducing Vulnerability to Climate Change in North West Rwanda through Community-based Adaptation and Building the capacity of Rwanda’s government to advance the National Adaptation Planning process. It will utilize training materials developed under these two projects as well as under the LDCF 2 - Building resilience of communities living in degraded forests, savannahs and wetlands of Rwanda through an ecosystem management approach. Training on the reforms in land use will be conducted in close collaboration with the Rwanda Land Management and Use Authority (RLMUA).
Training will take the form of training the trainer (ToT) and will be channelled through the Twigire Muhinzi system. For the technical institutions, training will target key staff in the local authority at District, Sector and Cell levels including Agronomist Officers, Environment Officers and interns, Cooperative Officers, Infrastructure Officers, Land Officers, Forestry Officers and RAB CIP Officers, crop intensification programme contractors (contracted service providers who organise seed and fertiliser distribution and provide extension advice). At the sector level, the training will target the Agronomist Officer who cover many of the above functions dealing with aspects of rural infrastructure, lands adjudication/title registration, forestry and environmental management (responding to the respective four designated officers at District level) in addition to the ‘primary’ focus on agriculture, livestock and horticulture. Livestock Veterinary Assistants and Forestry Officers deployed at Sector level will also be included in this training. At the Cell level, the training will target the Social Development Officers (better known as the Integrated Development Programme Officers or ‘IDPs’) as this is the main salaried post concerned with agricultural and development issues. Activities will include: a) Identify all the relevant groups that need to be trained (including architects, engineers, planners, community groups, etc.) and refine the capacity assessment undertaken during the project formulation (Annex 12) with emphasis on training needs assessment and identify further training needs; (b) Review existing training manuals and determine suitability for training under this project and/or modify as necessary, develop training modules with a clear and costed work plan for implementation; (c) Conduct training in a gender responsive and participatory process; (d) Reflect on the development and delivery of the training programmes and document lessons learnt (in conjunction with output 4.2).
Output 1.2: Climate-risk assessments methods provided to support adaptation planning as an on-going practice with a focus on the local level in the project areas: The main climate related disasters affecting the project area are floods, landslides and mudslides, droughts and famine. The country has recently established a clear, well equipped and coordinated institutional framework for disaster management and response (Box 4). The programme has established climate risk assessment methods and set up systems for information collection and dissemination linking national to district and sector levels. Under this output, the project will raise the awareness of the Imidugudu beneficiaries and local populations at the project sites to the existence of tools and systems assessing and addressing floods, landslides and mudslides, droughts and famine. It will train, in a gender and COVID-19 responsive manner, relevant groups on the use of the existing networks and information so they can utilize the same more effectively. Activities under this output include: a) Disseminate information to local communities on the climate risk assessment tools and methods developed by the Joint Program on Support to Ministry of Disaster Management and Refugee; (b) Train relevant groups on the access and use of the existing information and networks (in conjunction with output 1.1); c) Reflect on the process and document lessons learnt (in conjunction with output 4.2).
Output 1.3: Climate-proofed Imidugudu models developed in a science-led, gender and COVID responsive highly participatory process and piloted in four landscapes: This model will be developed with participation of the entire country (national level); however, its implementation will be tested at the local level in the project sites as described under output 2.3. To ensure replication/upscaling, model development will be led by the Rwanda Housing Authority (RHA) with participation from all relevant sectors, including the private sector (builders, contractors, suppliers of building materials within the Imudugudu programme). With the support of a Project Technical Committee, RHA will lead a national discourse on climate proofing the Imidugudu aimed at creating understanding and buy-in of: a) definition of the concept; b) its importance in the efficiency and sustainability of resources invested in the Imidugudu programme; c) the requirements (costs, policies, rules, regulations and institutional arrangements) for its effective and widespread adoption including the trade-offs at different levels. This will lead to a stakeholder-driven and expert-informed model and guide for climate proofing Imidugudu settlements in Rwanda, addressing the entire process from planning the rural settlement programme to its operation. This model and guide will be designed with options that are applicable to different settings of Rwanda. To ensure that the development of the climate proofing model is informed by the best available technical expertise and science, a Project Technical Committee will be formed to lead the consultation, comprising of nominated/delegated persons from relevant institutions (Ministries and Agencies), civil society, academia and community organizations, who are mandated to represent the interests of their respective stakeholder groupings (with attention given to adequate representation by women, young people and other vulnerable groups).
To ensure systematized consultation and input by all relevant groups, this committee will map stakeholders and develop a strategy for consultation and capacity support for stakeholders who might require it to participate fully. It will adopt innovative measures to engage the youth, for example by organizing competitions and debates between various institutions (schools, universities). Input from communities will be secured during the process of formulating adaptation plans (output 1.4). Inputs from the scientific community will be secured via technical conferences while inputs from policy makers will be secured through several iterative workshops and policy dialogues. Activities under the output will include: a) Establish the Climate Proofing Technical Committee with clear Terms of Reference for its operations; (b) Undertake stakeholder mapping and identify relevant stakeholders to be consulted; (c) Design a stakeholder consultation strategy, identifying any specific capacity support required for effective participation of specialized groups such as Meteo-Rwanda, technical experts (climate scientists, infrastructure development experts, rural development experts), academia and students; (d) Undertake the consultative process in line with the stakeholder consultation strategy (at all levels); (e) Collate the inputs from the stakeholder consultations and develop the climate proofing models; assess the feasibility of the various models via cost benefit analysis including considerations of social, economic and environmental feasibility using multi-criteria approaches. Select one or several models and develop guidelines for their application; (f) Develop training materials that are deemed necessary to support the uptake of the model (to be incorporated in the training conducted under output 1.4 and for uptake by other relevant government programmes); (g) Develop and disseminate awareness raising material to popularize the model such as policy briefs (with recommendations for policy and regulatory changes that might be required – in conjunction with Outcome 3); h) Reflect on the process of model development and piloting and document lessons learnt (in conjunction with output 4.2).
Output 1.4: Four Ecosystems-based Adaptation Plans developed in a science-led, gender and COVID-19 responsive and highly participatory process: As explained in the strategy section, households are highly dependent on low technology, low input agriculture and other natural resources for their economic development and livelihoods. Mainstreaming climate risks into the Imidugudu programme requires improving the natural resources and healthy ecosystems. Healthy functional ecosystems are therefore the bedrock of climate resilience of the communities in the rural areas, as they buffer away climate hazards and widen the livelihood options in the face of climate change. Adaptation plans will therefore be developed to provide a systematic approach to address the vulnerabilities at the landscape level and promote healthy natural resources and ecosystems. This will underpin good adaptation policy, planning and delivery by the communities that are directly dependent on natural resources for their livelihoods. Informed by various technical assessments, analyses, data and maps, and expert knowledge to be provided by the Project Technical Committee, the EbA planning process will bring together and enable an open dialogue to take place between the population exposed to climate change, decision makers, development planners and climate change experts to: define the geographic scope of the plan; describe the environmental, social, economic and institution characteristics of the mini watersheds; articulate a vision and strategic management objectives; identify and prioritize strategies and methods for addressing the issues; identify, prioritize and depict spatially suitable areas for cost-effective land rehabilitation, soil and water conservation, protection of wetlands, sustainable agriculture and other land uses; present a detailed implementation plan, including: (i) institutional arrangements for governance, collaboration and monitoring; (ii) a detailed monitoring and evaluation framework; (iii) a financing strategy and sustainability plan.
The project will update (ground-truthing) the vulnerability assessment undertaken during the project formulation and use it as one input into the ecosystems-based adaptation (EbA) planning. EbA will be implemented using a community-based approach to adaptation (CbA) and will incorporate the concepts of Forest Landscape Restoration principles, to identify forested areas for protection and degraded forests for restoration. Adaptation planning will utilize suitable tools such as CRISTAL (https://www.iisd.org/cristaltool/), COBRA or any of the many other tools summarized here https://www.iied.org/tools-for-ecosystem-based-adaptation-new-navigator and here https://www.iied.org/sites/default/files/eba_tools_navigator_tutorial_sept_2019_en.pdf; file:///D:/2020%20Bids%20and%20carry%20over/Rwanda%20LDCF%203/Literature/Community%20Based%20Adaptation%20Practioner's_Guide.pdf.
To ensure effective uptake, the plans will be developed in a gender responsive and participatory approach, to engage a wide range of stakeholders in discussions about climate change in general and climate proofing the Imidugudu in particular. This is in line with the Land Use Planning Guidelines (2017). Particular consideration will be given to ensure meaningful participation of women, youth and other vulnerable or potentially marginalized groups. Activities under this output include: a) Mobilize communities and conduct training to ensure their effective participation in the design of the adaptation plans (in conjunction with output 1.4); (b) Review available EbA planning tools and select the most appropriate for application under the Rwanda pilot areas’ conditions; (c) Conduct planning meetings - facilitate a discussion on the importance of the landscape for each of the stakeholders and sectors and how the actions of one stakeholder group or sector can influence the vulnerability and adaptation prospects of others, either positively or negatively; (d) Review and stock taking of socio-ecological information and information on the institutional and regulatory context; (e) Analyse climate change scenarios and assess current and future vulnerabilities (includes updating/ground trothing the vulnerability assessment report); (f) Identify, select and appraise adaptation options – including trade-offs; (g) Develop a clear, long-term implementation strategy, a financing and sustainability strategy; (h) Develop an M&E system to support adaptive management, learning and upscaling; (i) Develop and disseminate guidelines to integrate the EbA plan into day to day activities of the local communities and the existing development programmes, policies, frameworks and planning mechanisms at the local level; (j) Design a sustainability strategy to ensure continued implementation of the EbA plans and start its operationalization before the end of the proposed project; k) Reflect on the EbA planning process and document lessons learnt (in conjunction with output 4.2).
Output 1.5: Meteo-Rwanda capacitated to provide high quality climate information to support uptake of gender and COVID-19 responsive adaptation measures in the four project sites and nationally: This output will increase the capacity of Meteo Rwanda to generate required climate information to inform decision-making at central and project levels. Traditional methods of producing weather/climate forecasts using synoptic chart analysis are approaching a limit above which they cannot be improved further for greater benefit to users, who demand more accurate forecasts of the local weather/climate events. Enhancing climate related research, modelling and prediction of weather and climate through Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) and climate modelling is the only way to ensure decisions are informed by non-proxy data in mitigating climate risks. Numerical Weather Prediction products will inform not only policy makers at central level but most importantly at community level during their day-to-day activities, while climate projection information will guide policy and decision makers and interveners in their long-term plans, hence minimising costs and risk in the long-term.
To support the generation of numerical weather prediction and climate modelling products, the project will set up a centre at Meteo Rwanda, equipped with high capacity computers (2 mini cluster computers) and 4 desktops with super capacity to run mathematical and climate models and other relevant accessories. This centre will provide climate risk analysis and conduct climate sensitivity analyses. This information will be used in the development of the cost effective climate proofing models, defining climate proof settlements infrastructure, climate smart agriculture and resilience and in the assessment of long-term climate risk. Meteo Rwanda will be supported to actively contribute to downscaled weather and climate information which will be disseminated through regular channels nation-wide with a web portal created for online visualisation. The dissemination of the information will be accompanied by an awareness raising strategy to educate the public about the availability of the higher quality, more relevant interpreted climate information and the existence of the portal for the use/application of weather and climate information for day to day decision-making. This communication will be channelled through Communications companies (Television stations, radio stations, cell phone companies (Artec, Liquid Telecom and MTN Rwandacell), and newspapers.
Furthermore, Meteo Rwanda will partner with the Rwanda Agricultural Board and Twigire Muhinzi to further disseminate advisory services at the local level via the Participatory Integrated Climate Services for Agriculture (PICSA). PICSA will be used to reach out and empower farmers to interpret location specific weather and climate information in the project sites giving them options to cope with prevailing weather patterns amongst other factors so as to consider their implications on crop and livestock production. Lessons will be drawn from the four districts (Burera, Ngororero, Nyanza and Kayonza) who have benefitted from the Rwanda Climate Services for Agriculture (RCSA) project. Activities under the output include: i) set up and equip the numerical weather prediction and climate modelling centre; ii) conduct climate risk and sensitivity analyses and provide input into the development of the cost effective climate proofing model/defining and PICSA advisory services; iii) develop and disseminate awareness raising strategy on increased quantity, quality, relevance and access of climate data for decision-making; iv) partner with RAB and Twigire Muhinzi of Kirehe and Gakenke and roll out PICSA advisory services; v) Reflect on the process and document lessons learnt (in conjunction with output 4.2).
Outcome 2: Gender and COVID -19 responsive adaptation measures implemented in targeted landscapes following the landscape-approach
This outcome will pilot practical gender and COVID-19 responsive climate-proofing of Imidugudus in the four pilot areas benefitting both the old and new IDP settlements. It will work alongside three villages that Government and the districts have already identified for resettlement into new more climate smart villages (Muramba, Gasharu and Muzo), and whose upgrade is already budgeted for by government (output 2.3). LDCF funding will support climate-proofing initiatives through ecosystem based and diversified livelihood activities for the beneficiary communities, building on the Government co-financing of USD 10 million. It will also work with Bukinanyana village, which is already resettled in a more climate smart village as well as the inhabitants of the rest of the 191 villages in the four mini-catchments to support the implementation of the EbA plans. This will including the rehabilitation of the degraded hotspots to restore ecosystems services, upgrading of housing and infrastructure around Imidugudu to more climate smart versions, adoption of climate smart agricultural practices to increase land productivity and food security, promote the uptake of water harvesting and efficient household energy options to reduce pressure on the forests and more effective utilization of existing value chains to increase household incomes and resilience. Collectively, these measures will enable the beneficiaries of the rural settlement programme to create, improve and sustain livelihood options that collectively reduce their exposure and sensitivity to climate risks at the landscape level while simultaneously increasing their adaptive capacities. The results of this pilot will inform the design of the entire settlement programme of Rwanda to include climate change adaptation.
Outcome 2 will utilize the results of outcome 1 (skills and tools); it will provide feedback to the planning process of outcome 1 and the policy reform under outcome 3, informed by on-the ground practical implementation. It will contribute to the formulation of the participatory monitoring and evaluation plan and generate the knowledge to be collated and shared via outcome 4. It therefore forms the core of the project, and will be delivered through six outputs, described below.
Output 2.1: Climate smart agricultural practices adopted to increase and sustain food production under uncertain climate and COVID-19 scenarios in the four pilot areas: Land productivity has declined significantly on isolated farms (outside the land consolidation system under the Crop Intensification Programme – CIP), with over 75% of the households reporting that they do not get surplus produce for sale, in an area where agriculture is the main source of livelihoods. The project will rehabilitate degraded and unproductive lands to increase land productivity and increase food production for consumption and sales, which increases adaptive capacity. The project will therefore support: a) households to consolidate farms and join the CIP; b) construction of radical and progressive terraces in degradation hotspots; c) diversify livestock farming systems; and, d) popularize crop and livestock insurance as measures to support climate responsive practices.
Under land consolidation, the project will assist households to consolidate their lands in order to start farming under the Crop Intensification Programme and take on other climate smart agricultural practices. It will therefore raise the awareness of the communities about the gender and COVID-19 responsive climate smart options available for adoption (for cropping, agroforestry and livestock systems) they can adopt. Individual households will be encouraged and supported to adopt the practices appropriate to their circumstances. Support for this output will be channelled through the Twigire Muhinzi structures whose functions are described in Box 5.
The project will also assist willing households to diversify livestock using the Girinka model. The Girinka provides one cow per household in a merry-go-round system. The project will work through producer cooperatives to facilitate households to engage in these alternative livestock production systems. The project will also train the households on practices to integrate pasture production and food production systems to increase availability of livestock feed.
The project will support households to adopt crop and livestock insurance schemes, offered by the private sector. The GoR has recently (2019) initiated a subsidized insurance scheme for selected crops (maize and rice) and cows under the Girinka, where it provides 60% of the premium. GoR has entered into collaboration agreements with three insurance companies (Radiant, SONARWA and Prime Insurance) to roll out these insurance schemes country-wide. Radiant Insurance Company has been designated (by GoR) to operate the programme in Kirehe and Gakenke. Many of the households in the project area are not yet fully conversant with how these insurance schemes will function. The project will mobilize farmers in the project area to join the insurance scheme, exploring means of raising the premium, e.g. through the SACCOs and VSLAs. Activities under this output will include: a) Confirm degraded agricultural lands and degradation hotspots (in conjunction with the EbA planning); (b) construct radical and progressive terraces on about 300ha, treated with manure and planted with crops such as beans, maize, bananas; (c) Rehabilitate the irrigation system in Bukinanyana by constructing at least one structure to capture and store rain water; (d) Facilitate land consolidation process for the resettled households (identify suitable crops, establish cropping cycles, in line with the adaptation plans and the established extension support cycle, mobilize farmers to participate (making their land available), facilitate the delivery of the extension services availed under the land consolidation programme; (e) Review the climate smart agriculture practices (many available online) and determine suitability for use by the project (taking into considerations gender and COVID-19 requirements); (f) Disseminate the information and make households aware of the various available options and support farmers to implement measures appropriate for them, through the regular extension service (Twigire Muhinzi); g) Update list of alternative livestock and the requirements for successful adoption and disseminate the information; h) Organize interested farmers into clubs and/or cooperatives which will generate initial funds (either through savings or link to micro loans), and support formulation of livestock merry-go-rounds (in the same manner as the one cow programme under Girinka); i) Collaborate with Radiant Insurance Company to disseminate information on crop and livestock insurance schemes and recruit households to register; j) Reflect on the process of facilitating adoption of climate smart agricultural practices to increase and sustain food production under uncertain climate scenarios in the four pilot areas and document lessons learnt (in conjunction with output 4.2).
Output 2.2: Degradation hotspots (forests, hilltops and wetlands systems) identified by the EbA plans are rehabilitated to restore ecosystems services as the cornerstone of resilient livelihoods – covering at least 500 ha distributed across the 23,560ha: The baseline assessment identified degradation hotspots across the landscape of the four pilot areas (Table 2 and map 2 of Annex 1). These hotspots will be confirmed by the ecosystems-based adaptation plans to be formulated under outcome 1. Informed by the Environmental and Social Impacts Management Plan (ESMP), Gender and Stakeholder Engagement Plans, the project will treat these hotspots to boost the sustained provision of ecosystems services under the EbA context. This includes restoring forests to provide nature-based flood and erosion control, land stabilization in catchment areas and rehabilitating river banks to protect the water catchment services, reduce incidents of landslides and protect rivers and wetlands from siltation. The project will: a) stabilize 46km of degraded riverbanks via enforcement of rules and regulations prohibiting encroachment into the river channels combined with planting bamboo and other protective vegetation along the channels. These rivers include Rwagitugusa, Kibaya, Kagogo, Murutagara, Cyacika, Sumo, Mugambazi, Nyabarongo; b) engage communities in community-based protection of the 7,000 ha of forests found in the four project areas; c) implement reforestation programmes for at least 200 ha of degraded forest using the Forest Landscape Restoration (FLR guidelines) guidelines.
To ensure effective reforestation that balances trade-offs (economic, livelihoods needs and ecosystems restoration), reforestation will be guided by the Forest Landscape Restoration (FLR) Concept, where the villages will produce FLR plans following the methodology introduced by the World Resources Institute (WRI) and IUCN, as recently modified and applied for the Gatisbo FLR baseline conditions assessment. Under these guidelines, no known invasive species will be introduced. Species whose potential for invasiveness are unknown will be carefully assessed to avoid accidental introduction of invasive species. The project will specifically promote research on indigenous trees and grass species which balance quick growth rates, economic potential and protection of the environment. This is necessitated by the fact that high levels of poverty, high population densities and associated land shortage present a significant challenge to establishing/expanding indigenous forests, since they are seen to compete with food production. Agroforestry is currently the more feasible option for producing wood products and ecosystem goods and services. The major agroforestry practices to be promoted by the project will include boundary planting, contour hedgerows, home gardens, silvopastoralism and woodlots. Activities under this output include: a) Confirm the degradation hotspots and determine the community groups to actively participate in each of the rehabilitation works; (b) Undertake assessment of potential for invasiveness of all species considered for reforestation and promote research on indigenous species for rehabilitation, identify candidates and integrate them into the rehabilitation packages; (c) Mobilize/sensitize local communities in the hotspots, and refine training on specific rehabilitation measures/works (tree husbandry, terrace making and reestablishment of cropping systems on the new terraces, riverbank protection, etc.); (d) Establish tree nurseries (preferably via business arrangements, encouraging farmers who lose use of their lands for about a year (while establishing terraces) to take up such income generating activities; (e) implement land use zones in line with the EbA plans – e.g. survey and mark river channel boundaries to ensure clarity on all parties where utilization (annual crops, livestock rearing, etc.) should not cross; (f) Rehabilitate riverbanks by planting suitable grasses/trees, encouraging farmers who lose use of their lands for about a year (while establishing terraces) to take up such income generating activities; Maintain and protect seedlings (protect from grazing by livestock, monitor to replant if seedlings die off, weeding) for 2 years after planting; (g) Plant selected seedlings to reforest 200 ha; maintain and protect seedlings (protect from grazing by livestock, monitor to replant if seedlings die off, weeding) for 2 years after planting; h) reflect on the process of rehabilitating degradation hotspots (forests, hilltops and wetlands systems) to restore ecosystems services as the cornerstone of resilient livelihoods and document lessons learnt (in conjunction with output 4.2).
Output 2.3: Upgrading of housing and communal facilities around the Imidugudu to more climate smart versions in four villages benefitting about 500 households: Output 2.3 will test the implementation of the Imidugudu climate proofing model developed under output 1.3. The project will support the climate proofing of the IDPs, in a gender and COVID-19 responsive processes. The support will be spearheaded by the Rwanda Housing Authority (RHA) under the District Development Strategies (DDS) of both Kirehe and Gakenke, informed by the findings and recommendations of the ESMP. It will support the RHA and the Districts to refine the selection of the sites for the new villages, ensuring that medium to long-term climate information and the status of the ecosystems inform the choice. It will work on the designs of the new homes, ensuring that climate risks are factored into the building plans, thereby testing, or contributing to the development of building codes for climate proofed Imidugudu to be developed under outcome 1. It will ensure that all the stakeholders engaged in the building process, including the private sector contractors, have been trained on climate proofing (training provided under output 1.4). The project will also upgrade communal facilities by implementing the greening measures outlined in the IDP Greening Toolkit (which will be updated by the project under output 3.1). Improving communal facilities will be contracted to the relevant private sector and will include upgrading roads, installing waste management systems, electricity installation (including solar power), establishment of tree nurseries and reforestation of the new villages, community halls and early education support systems. The project will explore geo-tagging of all climate proofed infrastructure, water bodies and other resources under the programme to enable interested stakeholders (communities and other decision makers) to track progress and better planning of resilient infrastructure. Activities for this output include: a) Provide technical input into the selection of sites, design and building of the new IDPs and climate resilient access roads, ensuring that each step incorporate measures to climate proof the process and the settlement programme; (b) Organize beneficiaries to establish nurseries, grow and plant various materials to green the public places in the new villages; (c) upgrade communal facilities to incorporate climate risks (roads, installing waste management systems, electricity installation (including solar power), d) reflect on the process of collaborating with government co-finance to upgrade houses to more climate resilient versions and document lessons learnt (in conjunction with output 4.2). The design of the infrastructure and housing will deliberately integrate resilience and fit for healthy living in response to COVID-19, minimizing exposure to and community spread of diseases such as COVID-19. Consultations with health professionals will be done in the design of the housing and infrastructure.
Output 2.4: Rainwater harvesting and alternative energy options piloted in a gender and COVID-19 responsive process to increase resilience of livelihoods under the Imidugudu programme: Under this output, the project will support the beneficiaries of the resettlement programme (described under output 2.3) to acquire water harvesting structures to increase water available to households for domestic use and/or irrigation to counter the effects of irregular rainfall patterns. Implementation of this output will be closely guided by the ESMP and the Gender Action Plan. The project will support the acquisition of water storage facilities, based on best practices available. These could be tanks (underground and/or above ground as appropriate) for rain harvesting (minimum 3,000 litres). The project will undertake an assessment of water storage options to support adaptive capacity which are incremental in nature and use the findings to guide selection of systems to be disseminated. It will also support the uptake of alternative household energy technologies, to increase clean energy options and reduce pressure on the forests and the ecosystems. It will assist households to construct at least thirteen communal cowsheds (each shared by about 40 households), acquire a cow per household (under the national Girinka Programme) and construct and operationalize biogas units for the homes. Households will be engaged in a participatory process to identify cattle breeds that meet a multi-criteria system (including sustainability).
Many households in the IDP villages have experienced challenges with the biogas; indeed observations during the project planning process (confirmed verbally by District and National Government Officers) show that many biogas units have failed due to a combination of facts: a) the fixed dome bio-digester commonly used tends to be expensive, is complex to build and operate, and has a high rate of failure within the Imidugudu setting, especially in very cold places (such as Muzo/Kagano); b) The beneficiaries of the IDP villages are the very poor, many struggle with resources to maintain these systems (inadequate land, pasture and labour to feed the cows that produce the feed for the biogas) and an absence of a culture of maintenance, exacerbated by few available technicians to offer such services. The project will therefore utilize a mixture of household energy solutions which will include the following: a) explore cheaper, more efficient and less complex biogas systems such as the flexi-polyethylene tube digesters which utilize a broader range of materials – including waste from pigs, goats, sheep, rabbits, poultry, kitchen waste, market waste, grass, water hyacinth, farm weed and garden clippings. The project will review the outcome of several piloting initiatives undertaken in the country and if these are reliable and economically viable will actively support their uptake. (b) Biogas systems will be issued only to households who express the willingness and demonstrate abilities to maintain them. (c) Other households will be given the option of improved energy cookstoves. (d) Solar technologies will be promoted for both lighting and cooking. (e) At least 10 technicians will be trained on the biogas installation and maintenance as well as basic plumbing skills (for the maintenance of the water systems). The project will assist the communities to develop long term financing and business models for maintenance and replication of the technologies.
The project will further create awareness and demonstrate available solar technologies and improved cookstoves, encouraging local traders to supply them to increase availability locally. The Village Savings and Loans Clubs will be encouraged to use the joint savings to purchase solar equipment and the improved cookstoves under their normal mutual support systems, wherever appropriate. Activities under this output include: (a) Undertake an assessment of the different energy access options, including various biogas systems in use in the country and beyond and identify the appropriate system(s) for the households in the project areas; (b) Disseminate improved household energy options depending on the choices and abilities of households – includes construction of the selected biogas and BioSanGas toilets, improved cookstoves and solar technologies; (c) Construct thirteen communal cowsheds and link the households to the Girinka programme to acquire one cow per willing household; (d) Acquire 500 water tanks (each a minimum of 3000 litres); (e) Train (or provide refresher courses) for at least 10 technicians (5 of them females) on electrical, plumbing, biogas and road maintenance. These technicians will be engaged in the construction of these facilities to ensure practical on the job training; f) reflect on the process of providing improved water and energy systems and their role on increasing resilience and document lessons learnt (in conjunction with output 4.2).
Output 2.5: Beneficiaries of the Imidugudu supported to utilize existing value chains to increase resilience via higher household incomes: The project will support households to effectively utilize the many existing value chains, in a gender and COVID-19 responsive process, to add value to produce and access markets, to increase household incomes and hence adaptive capacity, guided closely by the ESMP, the Gender Action Plan and the Stakeholder Engagement Plan. The value chains include milk, fruit processing, coffee, poultry, maize, beans and cassava sales. It will identify marketing cooperatives and increase their capacities to facilitate producers to cooperate, bulk and sell together, buy inputs together and add value through transforming together. The Table below shows an initial private sector mapping that will be expanded during project implementation and used to build stronger private sector engagement in project implementation. Annex 12 contains a list of other potential products and opportunities for bulking commodities with currently active value chains. Cooperatives will be provided with technical expertise (via training and coaching) to increase operational capacities and improve financial services to their members (improve financial literacy and savings). The project will refine the value chain and private sector engagement assessments undertaken during the project planning phase to create a list of active bulking and marketing opportunities and hence value chains and potential enterprises development opportunities; clear understanding of the challenges faced by households and potential entrepreneurs in accessing and utilizing current opportunities (in value chains and enterprise development); assess capacity needs and implement capacity building programmes and support the establishment of sustainable and scalable businesses. Activities under this output will include: i) analysis of market opportunities; ii) selection and implementation of income-generating activities to utilize the existing value chains (identified during the PPG and confirmed during inception phase), e.g. milk, coffee, fruits processing, poultry, mushrooms (detailed in Annex 12 – Baseline Assessment Report); iii) appropriate support to local communities on value-addition activities, including agro-processing and marketing skills; iv) financial education; v) formulation of sustainable financing options; vi) promote the development of local private sector agents such as agricultural service providers; vii) Establish an agribusiness forum for exchange on sustainable value chain development and private sector engagement; viii) reflect on the process of facilitating communities to utilize existing value chains and its contribution to building resilient livelihoods and document lessons learnt (in conjunction with output 4.2).
Outcome 3: Policies and cross sectoral coordination
Under this outcome, the project will provide a policy enabling environment and improve cross sectoral coordination to create pathways for replication and scale up of the climate proofing concept. The project will ensure that the concept of climate proofing the Imidugudu and other infrastructure is captured in the national and district planning, budgeting and public investment systems, to provide a basis for budgetary provisions for its roll out. It will update REMA’s environmental planning tools to include principles of climate proofing. It will also increase the skills of institutions and platforms recently created by the GoR for cross sectoral coordination and disaster risk reduction. Building on the increased understanding and appreciation of the health-climate-environmental linkages due to COVID-19, the project will facilitate the involvement of the health sector in the cross-sectoral coordination capacity building process. The outcome will be delivered through two outputs, described below.
Output 3.1: Strategic review of policies, national and district strategies, programmes and planning tools to ensure they capture climate proofing of Imidugudu and other infrastructure programmes in the investment decision-making processes: Annex 12 shows the extent to which policies relevant to the Imidugudu mainstream climate risks. The project will facilitate stakeholders, in a gender and COVID-19 responsive process, to review the following strategic planning frameworks and to generate recommendations which will be provided to influence future planning cycles. These include the National Strategy for Transformation (NTS 1) 2017-2024, Rwanda’s National Investment Policy (NIP, 2017), the National Decentralisation Policy (2012), District Development Strategies (2018-2024), the Rural Settlement Strategic Sector Plan (2018-2024) and the Organic Law on State Finance and Property (No. 12/2013 of 12/09/2013 (Rationale for mainstreaming climate proofing Imidugudu in these instruments is provided in Box 6). The review of the Human Settlement Policy (2015) is currently under way, and likely to be completed by the time project implementation starts. The PIF and PPG processes informed the review of the policy. The project will therefore support the Rwanda Housing Authority to develop a strategy for implementing the revised policy, including aligning its budgets to the new policy provisions, to replicate and upscale the climate proofing concept. The project will also review the following relevant policies and programmes and make recommendations for reforms to ensure that they provide strong basis for integrating climate risk into development processes, hence promoting replication and upscaling of the climate proofing concept: National Urban Housing Policy (2008), National Disaster Management Policy (2012) and National Disaster Risk Management Plan (2013); the Strategic Programme for Climate Resilience (SPCR) (2017); the National Strategy for Transformation (NST; 2017–2024); the National Land Use and Development Master Plan (2011) (under revision), Local Urban Development Plans (LUDPs), and Detailed Physical Plans /Area Action Plans (AAP’s) for local implementation. It will then ensure that relevant environment and building protocols further integrate climate risk considerations. These include the Green Village Toolkit by REMA / PEI and the REMA’s Environmental management Tools and Guidelines. Activities under this output include: a) Review policies relevant to the Imidugudu (listed above), in a participatory and gender responsive process, recommend changes and advocate for their adoption; b) Update REMA’s Environmental management Tools and Guidelines; c) reflect on the process of using strategic policy reviews to ensure budgetary allocation for the upscaling of the climate proofing model in the Imidugudu programme and document lessons learnt (in conjunction with output 4.2).
Output 3.2: Technical and community institutions trained to improve their effectiveness in the cross sectoral coordination units and networks recently created by the Government of Rwanda: The project will strengthen the systems for cross sectoral and District coordination (described in Box 4) created recently by the GoR to make it easy for technical departments to coordinate the multiple decisions needed to climate proof Imidugudu programmes. At the District level, these include the District Disaster Management Committees (DIDIMACs), Sector Disaster Management Committees (SEDIMACs) and the Joint Action Development Forums (JADFs). They also include community level institutions representing the communities – the Monthly Community Work (Umuganda), the parents evening forum (Umugoroba w’Ababyeyi) and general village assemblies (Inama Rusange y’Abaturage). Activities under this output will be implemented in a gender and COVID-19 responsive process and will include: a) Undertake training needs assessments for the disaster risk reduction and coordination committees, the JADF and the community institutions in the Kirehe and Gakenke districts and formulate a training programme, in conjunction with output 1.1; (b) Train the committees, JADF and the community institutions as per the training programme, in conjunction with output 1.1; c) reflect on the process of further strengthening capacities for the institutions mandated to coordinate cross sectoral and District coordination created recently by the GoR and the impacts on their capacities and document lessons learnt (in conjunction with output 4.2).
Outcome 4: Knowledge Management supported by participatory and effective monitoring and evaluation
This outcome will provide monitoring and evaluation systems, codify knowledge and promote its dissemination to further support replication and upscaling. The project will design, in a gender and COVID-19 responsive process, a participatory M&E plan and integrate it into the M&E systems of the Twigire Muhinzi, District and/or relevant Sectors. It will also develop a comprehensive Communications and Knowledge Management Framework to coordinate communications and knowledge management (in a similarly gender and COVID-19 responsive manner). Knowledge products will be produced and disseminated targeting different audiences at all levels - local, national, international, including decision-makers, project partners, aligned programmes, community stakeholders. At least two knowledge sharing events will be held at the district level. This outcome is fundamental to monitoring the results of all the whole project, distilling and disseminating lessons. The outcome will be implemented through two outputs, described below.
Output 4.1: Development of participatory M&E plans and enhancement of communities’ capacities to monitor, learn and sustain the climate proofing initiative: The project will design a participatory M&E plan linked to the adaptation plans (in conjunction with output 1.4) and integrate it into the M&E systems of the Twigire Muhinzi, District and/or relevant Sectors. It will train community groups to provide the skills required for their effective participation in gathering data for monitoring, reporting it and using it to compile and learn lessons – to support adaptive management. The M&E system will take full cognizance of the complexity of ecosystems-based adaptation initiatives, especially the uncertainties of attributing improvements in environmental status to the outcomes in the short, medium and long-terms. At the district level, the implementation of the M&E system will link into existing GIS capacity in the Rwanda Land Management and Use Authority (RLMUA).
A project-specific monitoring and evaluation plan has been developed (described in Section 6 of this Prodoc and Annex 3). Activities under this output include: a) Building on participatory M&E plan produced via the EbA planning process, identify, in a participatory and gender responsive manner, additional indicators for the comprehensive monitoring of the effectiveness of the rural settlement programme on adaptive capacities of its beneficiaries. (b) Design and implement a training programme to equip the beneficiaries of the rural settlement programme in the project area to participate in data collection, storage, analysis and use of the outcomes of the process (in conjunction with output 1.1). (c) Design and implement a training programme for the technical institutions supporting the rural settlement programme on M&E, linking them to the GIS capacity of the Rwanda Land Management and Use Authority (in conjunction with output 1.1). (d) Refine the project Monitoring and Evaluation Framework (annex 3) to incorporate any amendments that may be necessary based on data or issues emerging from the planning process, and any refinement of the gender mainstreaming indicators. (e) Track project performance against the M&E framework quarterly, using UNDP Standard tools. (f) Carry out MTR and the TE and share lessons to improve current and future programming and implementation. (g) Reflect on the process of participatory M&E for communities under the EbA and Imidugudu Programmes and document lessons learnt (in conjunction with output 4.2).
Output 4.2: Best practices, lessons collated and shared, KM products codified and disseminated to support continued adaptation planning and implementation for the imidugudu program: The outcomes of this project are designed to strengthen the foundational capacities required to continue implementing climate-proofing measures in the Imidugudu programme and for on-going replication of similar initiatives country-wide. The project is therefore expected to contribute to the sustainability of all adaptation projects in and outside of the country. This output will promote dialogue, learning and cooperation between the project participants and other stakeholders inside and outside Rwanda, to catalyse upscaling. This will be achieved by engaging in communications and advocacy, knowledge networking and management. A comprehensive Communications and Knowledge Management Framework will be developed in Year 1, which will include strategic objectives, costed activities, roles, responsibilities, timeframes, workflows and institutional linkages to coordinate communications and knowledge management. The main elements of the Framework will include: (i) raising awareness through an effective community-led advocacy campaigns, supported by appropriate awareness-raising materials; (ii) developing and sharing communications pieces and knowledge products targeting different audiences (decision-makers, project partners, practitioners, community stakeholders), and using multiple formats, platforms and media; (iii) engaging in local, national and regional adaptation knowledge-sharing events and communities of practice, ensuring that lessons learnt in the project pilot sites inform similar projects being implemented elsewhere, and that lessons from other projects are used in adaptive management of the proposed project; (iv) collating, organizing and making available all information relevant to the project – through a dedicated webpage linked to the websites of the key institutions engaged in the project – RHA, REMA, MINAGRI, Gakenke and Kirehe Districts Councils and UNDP. All relevant project documentation will be uploaded to the UNDP PIMS+ platform. All communications will adopt, to the greatest extent possible, digital technology including mobile based applications and use of social media to disseminate information to communities.
Activities under this output will include: a) Develop a Communications and Knowledge Management Framework for the project. (b) Guided by the Framework: i) Establish and support a community-led advocacy programme for the project, working through Farmer Promoters and FFS Facilitators. (ii) Prepare and disseminate communications pieces and knowledge products targeting different audiences (decision-makers, project partners, aligned programmes, community stakeholders). The products should include policy briefs, technical reports, best-practice case studies for release via various knowledge platforms, social media (which could include Facebook and Instagram, with postings released via UNDP and Government of Rwanda platforms), YouTube video clips that can be accessed on mobile phones, radio interviews, articles in the printed media. (iii) Facilitate stakeholders to participate in local, national and regional lesson-sharing events convened by related projects and programmes, and compile lessons learnt reports or communications pieces based on this participation. (iv) Convene at least two lesson-sharing workshops during the project’s lifespan (preferably linked to MTR and TE feedback sessions), and compile the proceedings into lesson-sharing reports. (v) Set up a dedicated knowledge management system (web-based) where all information relevant to the project can be accessed, in a well-archived form.
 The data is available in a database – to avoid unnecessary data collection
 PICSA was developed by a broad partnership including the University of Reading and the CGIAR systems and was successfully piloted in four districts – Burera, Ngororero, Nyanza and Kayonza.
 Ministry of Natural Resources – Rwanda (2014). Forest Landscape Restoration Opportunity Assessment for Rwanda. MINIRENA (Rwanda), IUCN, WRI. viii + 51pp.
 World Resources Institute, Ornanong Maneerattana, Fred Stolle, Tesfay Woldemariam; 2017: Baseline Conditions of Forests and Landscapes in Gatsibo District. Methodologies for Understanding Restoration Progress through Biophysical, Socioeconomic and Governance Indicators: Gatsibo District, September 2017.
 Climate proofing of infrastructure such as roads will include, but not limited to engineering and structural measures (such as Slope stabilization structures such as dry stone wall, gabion wall and jute bag wall; paving of roads with durable materials; improved drainage systems to avoid erosion of materials; planning and design with proper cross section and dimensions) and bioengineering measures ( such as use of vegetation, either alone or in conjunction with civil engineering structures such as small dams, wall and drains to manage water and debris thereby reducing instability and erosion on slopes). Specific measures will differ by site.
 Costing around Rwf 800,000 and Rwf 900,000 respectively (US$ 1260 and US$ 1410) for a 6m3 and 8m3 tanks, respectively
 The two digester sizes available, 6 and 16 m3, cost about $500 and $800 respectively (includes the stove, gas pipes, installation)
 Sample platforms on which technical publications could be shared include: Climate Adaptation Knowledge Exchange (CAKE): http://www.cakex.org/ Ecosystems and Livelihoods Adaptation Network (ELAN) http://www.adaptationportal.org Nairobi Work Programme (NWP) http://unfccc.int/nwp
Natureandpoverty.net The Nature Conservancy: http://conserveonline.org/workspaces/climateadaptation weADAPT - http://www.weadapt.org/
Outcome 1: Enhanced institutional capacities, knowledge & climate information to integrate climate risks into the planning and implementation of ecosystems-based adaptation in the Imidugudu programme
Outcome 2: Adaptation measures implemented via landscape approach
Outcome 3: Improved Policy and coordination for effective integration of climate risks into the Imidugudu program
Outcome 4: M&E and Knowledge management
Barrier # 1: Inadequate technical capacity to generate relevant climate information and integrate climate risks into the planning, design and implementation of the Imidugudu program
- To effectively climate proof the rural settlement programme will require that local communities fully understand the risks to the programme emanating from climate change. It also requires that they understand the benefits and opportunities presented by climate change and have the skills to adopt climate smart solutions and adaptation practices. In addition, they need to understand and to have access to up-to-date, downscaled climate information and the appropriate tools and advisory services at their disposal.
- Although the quality of climate information has increased in the recent past, there are misalignments and capacity gaps in the climate information products and services value chain, from the collection, analysis and packaging of such information to meet the needs of communities, to the application of this information at local level to support the integration of climate risks into the rural settlement programme and adaptation decisions and actions. Consequently, majority of the population tend to mistrust the available climate information and weather forecasts. About 75% of the respondents to the baseline assessment undertaken during the formulation of this project reported that they did not use climate information in decision-making. Meteo Rwanda has limited capacity (up-to-date skills and state-of-the art equipment) to generate, analyse and provide usable weather and climate information. Insufficient training of staff of relevant departments within the Ministries of Infrastructure, Agriculture and Animal Resources and Environment, and Community Groups facilitating development at local levels such as the Joint Action Development Forum (JADF), cooperatives (SACCOs), Twigire Muhinzi and the associated Farmer Field Schools exacerbates the challenge of using climate information in the planning and implementation of the Imidugudu programme. These institutions have limited capacity to offer needed advisories and effective extension support to the communities which would enable them to adopt more resilient and productive practices within the rural settlement programme. Consequently, communities have limited awareness of the risks that climate change poses to the Imidugudu and their livelihoods and are not familiar with climate smart solutions to build their resilience and adaptive capacity.
- Climate proofing the Imidugudu programme is further hampered by a lack of a clear, locally applied/tested model to guide climate-proofing the Imidugudu programmes. Thus, a working definition for the climate proofing is yet to be developed; the requirements for the widespread application of such a model(s) are not yet known including the policy framework, institutional coordination, budgetary provisions or the skills and capacities required for its successful uptake. As a result, there are no prototype climate-resilient settlement designs; and the facilitators of the Imidugudu programme – such as the private sector engaged in building the model villages (architects, contractors) - have little awareness of the necessity of climate proofing the process, and have no tools or skills for climate proofing.
- While it is widely accepted that healthy ecosystems provide a cost effective means of reducing vulnerability of livelihoods to climate risks, the technical staff and the communities do not have the skills or the capacity to generate this knowledge and utilize it in facilitating a landscape approach or community based adaptation plans, that would guide the climate proofing of the Imidugudu program. The four sub-catchments targeted by this project are host to important river systems, wetlands and forests, which would provide cost-effective adaptation measures to secure the Imidugudu programme. These natural resources are highly degraded (Table 2), which sets off a vicious cycle where degradation of natural resources further increases poverty, often leading to negative capacity and coping strategies. Despite the high levels of vulnerability reported during the baseline assessment, none of the communities had any comprehensive plan(s) to tackle climate risks systematically.
- Outcome 1 will provide skills, information and tools to reduce and/or manage climate risks and secure the benefits of the Imidugudu programme.
Barrier # 2A: Imidugudu beneficiaries lack the financial resources to invest in available climate smart technologies and solutions to integrate climate risk into the Imidugudu and diversify and sustain climate-resilient livelihoods.
- The communities in the four project areas are resource-poor and unable to invest in the available climate smart technologies, opportunities and solutions for integrating climate risks into the Imidugudu and to diversify related livelihood systems. There are many opportunities to implement resilience building measures to existing and new Imidugudu, which include: a) rehabilitation of degraded ecologically sensitive resources to improve ecosystems services and the effectiveness of nature based adaptation technologies; b) uptake of climate smart agriculture practices to rehabilitate degraded agricultural land and increase food production and adaptive capacity; c) improved and climate smart livestock management practices such as uptake of Girinka programme (zero grazing system for cows) and diversification of livestock systems; b) use of improved household energy systems such as biogas, electricity (including solar); d) constructing water harvesting reservoirs that help address the prevailing water scarcity; and, e) utilization of existing value chains to add value to produce, access organized markets and increase household incomes, boosting adaptive capacity. Communities in the project area have underutilized these opportunities as explained below, further undermining their collective adaptive capacities.
- Increasing resilience of settlements by implementing village greening measures (measures outlined in Table 1): Muzo/Kagano and Muramba are not yet climate resilient settlements, Gasharu is an old Imidugudu site with only 120 families (with additional room for 400 more). Many of the homesteads are constructed with non-durable materials and are located in vulnerable sites, surrounded by degraded ecosystems, making them prone to climate risks (landslides and floods). Indeed, only one of the four pilot sites rated 50% along the criteria set by the government for a model village (Table 1). The RHA, in collaboration with the Kirehe and Gakenke Local Authorities, have identified many vulnerable households (categories 1 and 2) in the two districts. They have plans and budgetary provisions for settling many households into less vulnerable sites. However, the resettlement process is progressing slowly due to shortage of resources to build climate resilient houses and implement the greening processes simultaneously. Residents of these areas do not benefit from planned/consolidated dwellings and the associated access roads. More than 80% of the households do not have electricity or biogas, have no water harvesting facilities, and lack social amenities (community, health or technical training centres). Consequently, the beneficiaries of the new settlements to be established by RHA and the Local Councils will fall short of implementing these additional climate resilient measures, thus fall short of securing the benefits of the settlement programme from further climate risks.
- Ecosystems management to improve ecosystems services necessary to increase resilience: Ecosystem-based Adaptation is the use of biodiversity and ecosystem services, as part of an overall adaptation strategy, to help people to adapt to the adverse effects of climate change. It aims to maintain and increase the resilience and reduce the vulnerability of ecosystems and people in the face of adverse effects of climate change. However, the levels of ecosystems services at the project sites was reported to have deteriorated significantly due to degradation of ecosystems over the last decade (Table 2). Between 1990 and 2018, agriculture expanded by 8,439.70 ha and 5,140.20 ha of forests was lost. Currently, 10,410 ha of land faces moderate to extremely high risks of soil erosion and about 7,000 ha of forests are degraded. In addition, there are 288 ha and 47 kilometres of degraded wetlands and riverbanks, respectively. Despite these facts, there is limited protection and/or rehabilitation of these ecologically sensitive segments of the landscape, reducing the effectiveness of the natural capital in providing cost-effective adaptation infrastructure to the settlements and livelihoods.
- Limited uptake of climate smart livelihood support practices such as climate smart agriculture and diversification livestock systems, that would increase land productivity and diversify sources of household incomes, thus increasing resilience. Although the Crop Intensification Programme (CIP) was available in all four pilot areas, more than half of the households did not access the programme due to their inability to consolidate land with neighbours, a requirement for joining the CIP. In addition, many of the households cannot afford the 50% payment for irrigation equipment and technology (government subsidy covers the other 50%). Furthermore, although the Girinka Programme (one cow per family) is available in the four pilot areas, many respondents to the baseline assessment, especially women found it a challenge to keep cows. This is due to insufficient forage, lack of alternative choice (no small stock is offered to families who struggle to maintain the hybrid cows), limited consideration of gender aspect at project design level, limited land for eligible beneficiaries (families with less than 0.2 ha do not receive a cow while many teenage mothers fall in this category) and limited skills in the care and management of the given cows. None of the households had crop or livestock insurance, leaving them exposed to loss of capital due to unusual climate events.
Barrier # 2B: Low levels of community and local institutions’ capacity to add value to products and to effectively participate in existing value chains thereby limiting their access to high value markets
- Despite the presence of considerable number of value chains operating in the two districts (detailed in the baseline assessment report, example of coffee value chains in Box 2), households in the pilot sites found it challenging to utilize them to benefit from value addition and existing markets. This reduces their opportunities to diversify household incomes, thereby increasing vulnerabilities. The inability to link with value chains is attributed to weak cooperatives and absence of a culture of savings, exacerbated by high levels of financial illiteracy. Although savings would contribute to cushioning livelihoods against shocks from climate change, most people have very low levels of financial literacy which restricts their ability to save and access loans from formal financial services for improving agriculture and/or other income generating activities. Consequently, the number of people accessing these facilities is limited.
- There are many banks and financial institutions offering loans and investment packages (outlined in the baseline assessment report, example in Box 3). However, many people in the project areas are either unaware of these services, do not qualify for the services and/or belief the packages are too complex. Despite the many opportunities therefore, households in the target sites remain poor and outside this financial system. In Muramba, Muzo/Kagano and Gasharu, poor prices for milk sets a vicious cycle of weakening the milk savings and credit cooperative (SACCO) and irregular milk collection, high cost of transportation (3 hours to the processing unit). Furthermore, the local organizations had very limited capacities to undertake their stated objectives (particularly linking members to inputs, credits and markets), with a combined score of below 40% (using the modified UNDP Capacity Assessment System – Annex 12 ).
- Outcome 2 will support the practical implementation of measures to increase adaptive capacity, reduce exposure and sensitivity, thereby increase resilience.
Barrier # 3: Climate proofing Imidugudu is not recognized within the Rwanda Planning, Budgeting and Public Investment Systems
- The Government of Rwanda has taken keen interest in promoting strong adoption of adaptation and low carbon, climate resilience development strategies. Despite these advances, climate change is still seen as part of the environment agenda, rather than as part of the development or planning agenda. Furthermore, climate proofing the Imidugudu programme is not yet recognized within the country’s planning, budgeting and public investment system, limiting its national uptake. National priorities in Rwanda are implemented in accordance with planning frameworks that ensure coordination across all public institutions and adherence to national strategic objectives. This planning happens at three levels, namely: i) long-term planning at the national level; ii) medium-term planning at the national, sectoral and institutional level; and iii) annual planning at the institutional level. An issue that is not mainstreamed into these planning frameworks will not feature in the decision-making on national public investment, hence cannot be budgeted for, nor up scaled or replicated. The important planning frameworks include the National Strategy for Transformation (NTS 1) 2017-2024, Rwanda’s National Investment Policy (NIP, 2017), the National Decentralisation Policy (2012), District Development Strategies (2018-2024), the rural settlement Strategic Sector Plan (2018-2024) and the Organic Law on State Finance and Property (No. 12/2013 of 12/09/2013).
- Furthermore, important stakeholders involved in the planning and budgeting processes within the public sector investments are unaware of the importance of climate proofing the Imidugudu programme. They include Parliament, District Councils, Public Investment Committee (PIC), Local Government Projects Advisory Committee (LGPAC), Clusters, Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning (MINECOFIN), National Development Planning and Research Department (NDPR), National Budget Department (NBD), Ministry of Local Government (MINALOC), Local Administrative Entities Development Agency (LODA), Rwanda Development Board (RDB), budget agencies, line ministries and agencies and districts.
- Coordination of climate proofing development initiatives at the district level is further exacerbated by the out-dated tools for environmental planning and the limited capacity for coordination of the institutional framework for disaster management and response established by the GoR in 2018, which includes national, district and sector level coordination mechanisms (see details in Box 4). A National Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction (NADIMAC) has been established and it provides interagency and multi-sectoral technical support to the Ministry in charge of emergency management (MINEMA) on disaster management, disaster risk management and risk reduction issues and concerns. District Disaster Management Committees (DIDIMACs) have been established by law in the 28 Districts; and, Sector Disaster Management Committees (SEDIMACs) have been established in all sectors of Rwanda. These two institutions are in charge of coordinating and implementing disaster management activities at the District and Sector levels. Nevertheless, these institutions are nascent and still require additional capacity to sustain the coordination role. Similarly, the Joint Action Development Forums and Monthly Community Work (Umuganda), the parents evening forum (Umugoroba w’Ababyeyi) and general village assemblies (Inama Rusange y’Abaturage), which provide important foci for cross sector coordination in the implementation of the rural settlement programme have limited require additional training to be carry out these roles more effectively.
- Outcome 3 will ensure that climate proofing of the Imidugudu programme is recognized within the country’s planning, budgeting and public investment systems and that key stakeholders in the district and national budgeting processes are aware of the importance of its mainstreaming, creating a sustainable pathway for its national uptake. It will also provide training to the district-level coordination institutions (DIDMACs, SEDIMACs, JADF and community institutions) and provide updated tools for environmental management - that mainstream climate risks related to the Imidugudu.
Barrier # 4: Inadequate knowledge management and M&E systems limit the use of experiences to improve rural settlement programme on a larger scale
- Robust M&E, knowledge management systems are critical; they would enable the beneficiaries of the Imidugudu and the technical institutions that support them to learn from experience and lessons generated in Rwanda and abroad to collectively improve climate proofing and adaptation actions. However, these groups are not adequately or systematically monitoring the impacts of the programme on adaptive capacities of the beneficiaries. This is because they have no systems for monitoring and evaluation or knowledge management. The M&E and knowledge management systems of the institutions supporting the rural settlement programme and the associated livelihoods, such as the Twigire Muhinzi and the Local District Councils also have limited capacities for M&E and KM, because these functions are inadequately prioritized in budgeting processes. Outcome 4 will create participatory M&E and KM systems and build the capacity for the same for local communities and the support technical institutions.
 For example, Meteorological Services of Rwanda (Meteo-Rwanda) has recently reconstructed rainfall and temperature data to compensate for the significant decline in meteorological station data coverage from the mid‐1990s to around 2010. In addition, Meteo Rwanda generates weather information at 4x4 kilometre grid and communicates it using the administrative boundaries as reference.
 An improved Imidugudu is expected to have basics such as: planned/consolidated dwellings constructed with good quality permanent materials, have access to modern energy systems such as electricity, biogas, liquid petroleum gas, solar technologies, be equipped with water harvesting systems such as water tanks, have an established Girinka programme (access to one cow per family with a communal shed) and other economic activities linked to vibrant value chains, be served by public facilities such as a community hall, health facility, Early Childhood Centre and a technical training centre, members have access to land under the land consolidation program (with its improved extension services, commercialization and access to value chains), have well developed access roads (tar, murram) and that members have insurance, preferably for crop and/or livestock.
 Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (2009). Connecting Biodiversity and Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation: Report of the Second Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group on Biodiversity and Climate Change. Montreal, Technical Series No. 41, 126 pages.
 Source - (Prime Minister’s order No006/03 of 30/01/2017 “Drawing a list of Swamp Lands, their characteristics and boundaries and determining modalities of their use, development and management
 48.8% of the men reported accessing land under the programme compared to 32.3 of the men and 14% of the youth
 Implemented since 2008, the Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources (MINAGRI) has used the CIP to promote commercialization of agriculture products and boost economic development of famers, supported by input schemes and value chains.
 The baseline assessments undertaken during the project formulation revealed that: (i) over 85% of farmers in the pilot areas do not use irrigation currently; (ii) irrigation produces a significant increase in yields both in Kirehe (where the climate is dry) and Gakenke (less dry, but high rain variability); (iii) a typical 0.25 ha farm could spend in the range of RWF 930,000 (~USD 1,000) to purchase a pump, sprinklers, pipes and accessories; (iv) half of the investment is covered by the subsidy the government; the remaining half needs to be finance by the farmer (or cooperative) directly, through loans or, if available, contributions from donors and NGOs.
 Government of Rwanda, 2018. GENDER MONITORING OFFICE ANNUAL REPORT 2017-2018. http://www.gmo.gov.rw/fileadmin/user_upload/reports/GMO_Annual_Report_2017-2018.pdf
Linkage of the proposed project to National Development Strategies and Priorities: Climate proofing the rural settlement programme and enhancing resilience of the livelihoods of the beneficiaries of the programme will to Government Priorities set out in key national programmes and development strategies including:
- the Green Growth and Climate Resilience Strategy and National Strategy on Climate Change and Low Carbon Development for Rwanda (GGCRS), which provides a pathway to address climate change and low carbon development, with an aim of making a significant impact on adaptation, mitigation and economic development. The strategy was developed in recognition of the fact that if the country is to tackle climate change, it needs to be mainstreamed into Vision 2050 and Sector strategies. The GGCRS aims to guide the process of mainstreaming climate resilience and low carbon development into key sectors of the economy. With a focus on agroforestry, climate knowledge, irrigation and roads infrastructure as its main tenants for adaptation, it provides a strategy focusing on green, low carbon development, but does not explicitly provide mechanisms to deal with vulnerabilities, associated with climate change. The project will contribute to tackling some of the barriers hampering its full implementation, including inadequate awareness, lack of practical tools for mainstreaming in many sectors (e.g. the rural section of the human settlement policy) and capacity inadequacies amongst stakeholders.
- the National Adaptation Plan of Action (NAPA): Objective four of the NAPA aims at providing assistance to districts of vulnerable regions to plan and implement conservation measures and water storage. Objective five aims to increase adaptive capacity of grouped settlement "Imidugudu" located in vulnerable regions by improving potable water, sanitation and alternative energy services, and the promotion of non-agricultural jobs. The project contributes to these objectives directly.
- Vision 2050 focuses on five broad priorities: High Quality and Standards of Life; Developing Modern Infrastructure and Livelihoods; Transformation for Prosperity; Values for Vision 2050; and, International cooperation and positioning. The project will contribute directly to the aims of vision 2050 - improved natural resources management, mainstreaming climate risk and gender, which are considered important foundational issues for the achievement of the Vision. The implementation instrument for the remainder of Vision 2020 (from 2017 to 2020) and the first four years of Vision 2050 (2021 – 2025) will be the National Strategy for Transformation (NST1). Priority Area number 7 of the NST1 recognizes sustainable management of the environment and natural resources as the pathway healthy lives and a Green Economy, focusing on Forestry, Land, Water, Environment and Climate Change. Under increased access to and use of sustainable and low carbon energy, the number of households depending on biomass as a source of energy for cooking is expected to reduce from 83.3% (2014) to 42% by 2024. This will be achieved by working with the private sector to increase the uptake of improved cooking stoves and to promote the use of alternative fuels such as cooking gas and biogas in both urban and rural areas
- National strategy for climate change and low carbon development (2020 to 2050). The strategy outlines actions that Rwanda can take in the short to medium term to ensure its future stability and prosperity in a changing climate and uncertain energy future. The strategy calls upon national planners to chart a new development pathway for integrated sector planning that balances cross-cutting issues of resource management. The project contributes to all the three core strategies of the National strategy for climate change and low carbon development: a) To guide national policy and planning in an integrated way; b) To mainstream climate change into all sectors of the economy, and (c) To position Rwanda to access international funding to achieve climate resilience and low carbon development.
- Strategic Programme for Climate Resilience (SPCR): The objective the SPCR is to enhance integrated, economy-wide, multi-sectoral climate resilience and to drive climate-responsive investment in Rwanda. Funded by the Climate Investment Funds (CIF), the SPCR aims at transformative impact through: a) Increased resilience of households, communities, businesses, sectors and society to climate variability and climate change; b) Strengthened climate responsive development planning. The proposed LDCF project contributes to these two overall goals, as well as directly to the four strategic programmes of the SPCR, namely: i) Agriculture Driven Prosperity under which it will provide climate-smart strategic support to Rwanda’s agriculture and agroforestry sectors, while implementing participatory adaptation and climate resilient infrastructure in targeted areas. (ii) Water Security for All, under which it will enhance climate resilience of surface water and groundwater systems, promoting sustainable access to water, and reducing vulnerability in the face of increasing uncertainty in runoff. (iii) Climate Resilient Human Settlements under which it will build Rwanda’s population resilience to shocks and stresses, by securing more reliable infrastructure and service delivery, and integrating climate change considerations into urban development. (iv) Stable and Sustainable Landscapes under which it will safeguard Rwanda’s most fragile and disaster-prone landscapes, to reduce communities’ vulnerability to floods and landslides and to enhance preparedness for a wide range of climate change impacts.
 Republic of Rwanda, 2017: National Strategy for Transformation 1: THE 7YEAR GOVERNMENT PROGRAM 2017-2024
Climate change is expected to bring a raft of changes to Bhutan including an increase in average temperatures, a decrease in precipitation during the dry season, and an increase during the wet season in the long term; increased intensity of rainfall events, erratic rainfall patterns, and a shift in monsoon timing; and increased threats of hydro-meteorological and geological disasters due to climate risks, such as glacial lake outburst floods (GLOFs), landslides, earthquakes, river erosion, flashfloods, windstorms, and forest fires. The hydropower, agriculture, and tourism sectors, which together account for almost a quarter of GDP, are all highly dependent on, and affected by, climate variability and natural hazards. With financial support from the Green Climate Fund, this project focuses on assisting the Royal Government of Bhutan to further advance their cross-sectoral National Adaptation Plan process, as well as to put in place a robust implementation monitoring and evaluation system.
Outcome 1: Enhanced coordination, learning and knowledge management for an iterative NAP process.
Outcome 2: Technical capacity enhanced for the generation of climate scenarios and impact assessment
Outcome 3: Vulnerability assessments undertaken and adaptation options prioritised
Outcome 4: NAP formulated and capacity for implementation and monitoring established
Strengthening the Resilience of Climate-Smart Agricultural Systems and Value Chains in the Union of Comoros
Comoros is particularly vulnerable to climate change, like other Small Island Developing States (SIDS). Due to its location and topography Comoros is among the most climate vulnerable countries in the world, and 54.2 percent of the population live in at-risk areas. The climate risk index of 25.33 for the year 2019 places the Comoros 16th (out of 180) of the countries most at risk. This value is mainly attributable to the passage of Cyclone Kenneth in April 2019 while the longer-term climate risk index, for the period 2000-2019, is 90.00 corresponding to the 97th rank. Comoros is extremely vulnerable to the amplification of rainfall variability linked to climate change, especially since the rural population is entirely dependent on rainwater harvesting. Models predict an increase in the annual average temperature, as well as increasing and intensifying risks associated with climate change, such as sea level rise, floods, droughts, and cyclones. Climate impacts are impacting agriculture, vulnerable ecosystems and livelihoods.
The proposed project “Strengthening the Resilience of Climate-Smart Agricultural Systems and Value Chains in the Union of Comoros” will aim to increase the resilience of 98,000 people, over 11% of the Comoros population, by focusing on key agricultural value chains vulnerable to the impact of climate change, including vanilla, ylang-ylang, and clove, the three main Comorian export commodities. The intervention will build capacities and support investments in climate-smart practices, more autonomous supply of inputs, better climate risk management and better access to knowledge and training, providing resilient livelihoods options for smallholders while reducing import dependence and increasing access to better quality, locally produced food. Implemented over a period of five years with an allocation of US$10 million from the Global Environment Facility Least Developed Countries Fund, the intervention will build on and make US$46 million worth of co-financed investments in agriculture and transportation in Comoros more resilient to climate change impacts. The project is aligned with and contributes to the Emerging Comoros Plan 2030, the flagship national strategy guiding the country’s development and green recovery efforts.
Component 1. Systemic, institutional and individual capacities for climate-resilient agriculture includes one outcome: Outcome 1. Enhanced capacity of national institutions and value chain actors involved in agriculture development to guide, plan, supervise and implement climate-resilient practices. The strategy for achieving outcome 1 is based on 3 outputs related to capacity development (i) of the institutional actors responsible for developing climate-adapted solutions and of CRDEs responsible to provide extension services to support their adoption, and (ii) of smallholder farmers, collectors and retailers to help them cope with the risks and uncertainties related to climate change, and (iii) through the development of guidance tools to support the adoption of climate-resilient practices. The development of institutional capacities will facilitate the replication of the lessons of this project to the whole agricultural community and will allow the continuous adaptation of tools and approaches to the evolution of the climate.
1.1 Capacity development plans elaborated and implemented to increase the institutional skills required to plan, develop, disseminate, and support the adoption of climate-resilient agricultural practices among smallholder farmers, and value chain actors. In 2013, the government established a network of sixteen (later expanded to nineteen) Rural Economic Development Centers (CRDEs) in rural areas of the country to supervise rural development programs for the improvement of the economy through the production and environmental protection sectors. CRDEs are local support structures for farmers responsible for providing services adapted to their needs to strengthen the resilience of agricultural systems and value chains. The CRDEs are in particular responsible for training farmers, providing technical extension services, support and advice to producers, supervising professional organizations, ensuring the collection and management of data, providing support to improve rural populations' access to agricultural inputs and supporting the development of basic infrastructure (eg hydraulics, supply, etc.). CRDEs will therefore be key beneficiaries of the project's capacity building interventions and will be at the centre of the project interventions to support small agricultural enterprises and other value chain actors. The rationale for the selection of target intervention areas is presented in section 1b. Project Map and Coordinates.
Strengthening the capacities of CRDEs will require a significant involvement of the public administration to support the recruitment of staff with adequate training meeting the profiles defined for CRDEs and ensure their continuing training and include aspects of adaptation to climate change in the training curriculum for agricultural technicians (University of Comoros and National Horticultural Center): a) Redeployment of institutional staff: Faced with the recruitment constraint within the public service, the project will advocate with the authorities within the ministry and the national and regional directorates and the Governorates of each island for the redeployment of staff from the administrations towards the CRDEs. The Regional Directorate is responsible for proposing the assignment of technicians to the CRDEs and the ministry is responsible for their recruitment. b) The project will support the definition of criteria for the selection of candidates for the assignment of personnel to CRDEs to ensure that they have the capacity to fulfill the responsibilities of the personnel (Director, Accountant Manager, Administrative Assistant and Technicians of the Center) as defined in Article 14 of Decree No. 13-015 relating to the status of Rural Economic Development Centers (CRDE). For each of these positions, the project will provide details on the requirements and skills required and will specify the need to work in rural areas. c) The project will support the establishment of a continuous training system and promote self-training focused on adaptation and resilience to climate change for CRDE staff. The project will work with institutions that provide training (National Horticultural Center and UdC) in order to include these themes in their curricula. Also, online resources are available (fr.csa.guide) to facilitate self-training in climate-smart agriculture on the CGIAR (Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research) and CCAFS (Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security) websites. Modules have also been developed by FAO and are available in French. d) The project will support the development of a training of trainers’ program (namely in collaboration with FOFIFA and FIFAMANOR of Madagascar), which will target technicians within the staff of CRDEs who have more capacities in the most relevant areas. The trainings will cover different themes relating to climate-smart agriculture, including the selection and production of suitable seeds. e) The project will support the strengthening of the skills of CRDEs in communication and their essential role as extension centers focused on the development, evaluation, demonstration and dissemination of improved and climate-resilient agricultural practices to farmers, and their support throughout their adaptation to new techniques and approaches as well as in the traceability process through digital platforms and technological solutions.
This output is also focusing on strengthening the capacities of the other parties responsible for planning and supporting the implementation of climate-adapted agricultural practices, namely the National Directorate of Agricultural and Livestock Strategies (DNSAE), local authorities, NGOs and the private sector. Based on assessments of capacity development needs, the project will support the strengthening of the technical capacities of state actors (DNSAE and regional directorates for Agriculture), local authorities (municipalities, including the mayor and councillors), NGOs (including DAHARI, ARAF, Initiative Développement, Ngochao, 2 Mains, GAD, Mesha, and the Jeune Chambre Internationale), and the private sector (especially in relation to cash crops including collectors, vanilla preparers, exporters) to identify vulnerabilities to climate change in agricultural and pastoral activities, and develop and implement long-term adaptation strategies, through training, dissemination of knowledge through various media, and the development of action research involving these actors. (b) The project will support the development of the capacity to develop and update agricultural land use plans and agricultural calendars through the establishment (composition, terms of reference and resources) of a multidisciplinary working committee in charge of to develop and update the agricultural calendar on an annual basis and based on meteorological data and the analysis of the vulnerabilities of the various segments of the targeted sectors.
1.2 Training packages developed and delivered by CRDEs to farmers and agriculture value chain actors to enable the implementation of climat risk reduction measures. To achieve this output, the project will target local farmers, men, women, youth, and people with disabilities (PWDs), working individually or within cooperativeswith a special consideration given to facilitating attendance by women and PWDs. Capacity development needs will be assessed during the preparation of the project document (PPG). The trainings will be organized by the CRDEs who will also ensure the demonstration of climate-adapted practices within their plots, and will be provided by relay farmers, to build the capacity of farmers to understand and assess the effects of climate change on the condition of plots, crops and livestock, and to identify appropriate measures to improve it. Where appropriate, training will take advantage of the digital platform of the CRDE network, which aims, among other things, to facilitate access to online trainings on climate-smart agriculture and the digital transition.
Measures to improve climate resilience may include: i) improvement of soil condition to restore or increase productive capacity and counter erosion; ii) selection of new climate-resilient agricultural crops and varieties, and livestock options, suitable to local weather and soil condition of the plots (identified under the output 2.1 and in line with guidance provided in the agricultural land use plans under the output 1.3) and to the needs and interests of farmers; iii) adoption of practices (such as agroforestry, hedging, associated crops, agropastoralism) that strengthen the climate resilience of agriculture and livestock, and identified under the output 3.1.
In accordance with a national strategy to encourage actors to further specialize within value chains, training will also address aspects of processing, marketing and packaging of agricultural products. The climate change impacts on these segments of the value chains will be assessed to identify vulnerabilities and required adaptation mesures to increase their climate resilience, and develop/implement related trainings.
To further reduce the vulnerability of smallholder farmers in the context of climate change, the project will equally support the establishment or strengthening of local farmers cooperatives and improve their capacities in governance, microfinance and micro-entrepreneurship. To contribute to the financial sustainability of the climate-responsive solutions proposed under the project, trainings will include the development of business models that integrate the depreciation cost of inputs (e.g. infrastructure) into the price determination of products.
1.3 Guidance plans and tools to support the adoption of climate-resilient agriculture are designed, assessed, and disseminated on the basis of the analysis of the climatic and socio-economic vulnerability of each of the sectors of the targeted value chains, and include agricultural land use plans, crop calendars, advice sheets on varieties and agricultural practices for adapted varieties including for market gardening, cash crops, food crops, fodder, and for agroforestry including hedging (embocagement). To achieve this output, the project will undertake: (a) Climate and socioeconomic vulnerability analysis for all sections of targeted value chains. In order to identify the main issues affecting the value chains of targeted cash crop and market gardening and to better define the interventions needed to strengthen their resilience, the project will involve the value chains actors to document and assess climate, environmental, and socioeconomic vulnerability in all sections of the value chains. The vulnerability assessment will integrate the results of the assessments conducted by the CGIAR for tomatoes, bananas and manioc crops based on exposure to several factors related to climate change. As part of the vulnerability analysis, the project will develop value chain climate risk profiles. Assessments of the impacts of climate change often focus on production while neglecting the other components of value chains. However, successful adaptation requires thinking about how climate change will affect all aspects of the value chain. It is proposed to carry out this reflection with the stakeholders concerned by following the approach of climate risk profiles. Discussions will take place with value chain actors, i.e. producers, collectors, cooperatives and exporters, including the local populations involved, on their perception and experience of climate change and its impact on cultivation, harvesting, storage, transportation and processing of products. These discussions will also involve support and supervision structures for agricultural production in the field (CRDE) to consolidate understanding of the risks and effects/impacts of climate change on the different segments of the value chains. These consultations will help identify the individual and institutional actions and capacities needed at each level for the design and adoption of effective climate change adaptation measures, such as climate-smart agriculture practices or access to innovative information/communication tools or technologies that facilitate their adaptation. Solutions will be identified for each segment of the value chains – inputs, production, collection, storage, processing and marketing – to increase the adaptive capacity of value chain actors to climate change. This exercise will make it possible, among other things, to identify the most vulnerable actors (men-women-young people-people with disabilities) within each of the value chains. In addition, the review will document the land tenure situation of cultivated plots as well as governance, gender and inclusion issues in order to identify the challenges to tackle so that value chains are resilient, inclusive, sustainable and that the benefits are equitably accessible and distributed among the different actors, as between men and women.
(b) Agricultural land use plans within the areas supported by each of the CRDEs: The project will support planning for optimal land development that takes into account projections of climate change and its impacts, as well as the potentials and vulnerabilities of current and new crops using the FAO Ecocrop tool. This planning will build on existing plans for individual plots (approximately 75% of smallholder farmers have developed climate-adapted land use plans for their individual plots, with the support of CRDEs, that take soil and climate into account) and knowledge, including studies carried out by CGIAR as part of the development of an IFAD project. Such plans will integrate the planning carried out for protected areas under the UNDP-GEF project and the planning carried out for the Mwali Island Biosphere Reserve with support from AFD. (c) Crop calendar: Development of an agricultural calendar adjusted to new weather conditions, supplied and updated on an ongoing basis according to the acquisition of new knowledge. (d) Operating plans: The project will support the parties concerned to develop or update plans for agricultural and agro-pastoral operations at the individual, cooperative and CRDEs levels. (e) Online tool: The project will support the development of an online tool to provide advice to farmers and disseminate knowledge on climate-smart agro-ecological practices on the basis of knowledge and best practices developed in the Comoros by CRDEs, farmers and other stakeholders in the sector. The feasibility of enhancing the efficiency of the real-time dissemination of agrometeorological forecasts by contracting the dissemination of messages to individual operators to telephone companies will be assessed.
Component 2. Diversification of climate-resilient value chains includes one outcome: Outcome 2. Increased resilience of agricultural actors through the identification and promotion of new climate-resilient value chain options with good prospects for profitability, increased access to national and international market information and equitable benefit sharing. To achieve outcome 2, the project will support interventions to identify new value chain options which climate-resilience, profitability on national and/or international markets, and social acceptability will have been carefully assessed and validated with the support of CRDEs and INRAPE strengthened expertise. To achieve result 2, the project will support interventions aimed at identifying new value chain options whose climate resilience, uniqueness of components or properties, profitability in national and/or international markets and social acceptability will have been carefully assessed and validated with the support of the CRDEs and the enhanced expertise of INRAPE. Increased awareness of actors within national institutions, policymakers and private sector investors not only on the challenges posed by climate change to Comorian agriculture, but also on the potential brought by a diversity of new adapted value chains to the country's climate and environmental conditions, and by agricultural practices that will make it possible to increase the resilience of traditional crops, will promote the political support needed to make the changes, particularly at the level of the CRDEs, and mobilize the investments required from the private sector to develop value chains. Equity in benefit sharing between value chain actors and decent incomes are essential elements for the sustainability and replicability of the solutions developed under the project and will be ensured through the above-mentioned investments, political support and negotiation. and the signing of agreements between value chain actors ensuring the equitable sharing of benefits. Access to market information will enable value chain actors to position supply in relation to existing markets and negotiate appropriate prices commensurate with the quality and uniqueness or rarity of the products offered. Benefits to smallholder farmers will be optimized through developing product processing and marketing capacities, and improving CRDEs’ capacities to organize the distribution and the marketing through fairs, as inspired by Diboini CRDE’s successful experience, and promoting the multiple advantages of organic and fair-trade agriculture on the local and national scene and promoting the quality and specificity of Comorian products on the national, regional and international markets. This component will build on the contributions of co-financing projects aiming at eliminating obstacles in the commercial circuits (building on the achievements of co-financing partners for road rehabilitation, including Sima -Moya and other rural roads (BafD, PIDC-BM, AFIDEV-AFD).
2.1 Identification of climate-adapted agricultural varieties and livestock breeds to develop climate resilient and profitable value chains. A major focus of the project is to help famers shift from a few climate-vulnerable crops to a diverse selection of climate-resilient agricultural and livestock options that can support the development of profitable value chains. Diversification is an integral part of the strategy to build climate resilience, reduce risk and increase the chance of ultimate success. A more diverse array of crops/varieties is more likely to contain varieties that provide overall resilience to a farmer’s field (or to the several fields of a farmers’ group), as there is a greater chance of any one or a few of them having traits that enable them to adapt to a changing climate, or that confer resistance to new pests or diseases whose spread is favored by climate change. Diversifying farmers’ sources of income and spreading harvests and revenues throughout the year will also contribute to strengthen farmers resilience to climate change.
This will be achieved by identifying new climate-adapted cash and garden crops and livestock options whose demand is strong on national or international markets, which only require small areas (thus reducing the risk of expansion of cultivated areas at the expense of natural forests), which production cycle is short, and which can be processed locally. (a) As part of the PPG, a series of Comorian products will be examined including varieties endemic to the Comoros or which have become rare on a regional or global scale and products whose specificity is based on traditional production techniques that meet the requirements of agroecological cultivation. For each variety, the review will focus on the identification of its soil and climatic requirements and their correspondence in the Comorian context, the investigation of distinctive assets in existing and potential markets and will also include an assessment of the interest of farmers, men, women and youth. (b) The project will also seek to strengthen the climate resilience of market gardening sectors targeting local markets in order to increase household self-sufficiency and food security, reduce the need to import lower quality products, while creating new jobs, especially for women and young people. The project will work with CRDEs to demonstrate and disseminate adaptation solutions whose effectiveness has been demonstrated within the framework of the CRCCA project and will develop solutions based on soil-less cultivation of short-cycle varieties, which can be grown on small areas in urban or peri-urban areas (where the majority of the Comorian population is concentrated), using hydroponic systems with reduced water and input requirements, and therefore attractive and more accessible for young Comorians.
The project will also contribute to strengthening the climate resilience of poultry and goat farming value chains targeting local markets through the identification and assessment of new climate-resilient breeds. Integrating the rearing of climate-resistant goat and poultry breeds into the family economy will help increase self-sufficiency and food security for families, reduce the need to import lower quality products, while creating new jobs accessible to women and PWDs.
For poultry farming, the project will support the development of the CRDEs’ capacities to develop Kuroiler type breed chicken farming practices adapted to the Comorian climate, to demonstrate them, and to provide training to farmers. The project will build on a study conducted in 2019 by the Tanzanian company AKM Glitters on behalf of the Diboini/Hamalengo CRDE and UNDP-Comoros, to assess the situation of the poultry sub-sector in Comoros and recommend solutions adapted to the Comorian context and climate, with the intention of relaunching the subsector in the aftermath of the devastation caused by the cyclone Kenneth.
Goat and cattle breeding is practiced by many people in rural areas, especially young people and women. Goats generally possess high thermotolerance compared to large ruminants such as cattle that enable them to maintain their production under extreme climate conditions and to play an important role in mitigating and adapting to climate change, namely i) their higher capacity than other farm ruminants to effectively convert feed sources into milk and meat, ii) their lower methane emissions in comparison to other domestic ruminants. For the rearing of goats, the project will promote a sustainable intensification approach through the hedging technique (embocagement) which has long been proven in the Comoros, especially in Ndzuani and the building of goat sheds to protect them from predation. By creating a balanced environment combining trees, culture -including fodder, compost, and livestock in an enclosed space where the composting of animal and plant waste enriches the bocage according to the logic of the circular economy, and by associating water and soil conservation measures (bunds, ponds, living hedges), this approach will mitigate the effects of heat stress and ensure a supply of quality fodder and thus improve the resilience of goat herds to the effects of climate change. This approach allows at the same time to address the problems linked to extensive agriculture and slash-and-burn agriculture still practiced in the Comoros, to mitigate soil erosion and degradation, to reduce the need for chemical fertilizers and to maintain biodiversity.
Through value chain analyses conducted for the climate adapted crops, varieties or breeds, the project will identify the options with favorable prospects for profitability. The value chains analyses will follow guidance provided in UNDP’s “Toolkit for value chain analysis and market development integrating climate resilience and gender responsiveness” and will support their promotion with CRDEs, farmers, cooperatives, and the private sector by publicizing the successes of the new approaches by the beneficiaries (champions) themselves and by facilitating visits to demonstration plots and sites where new techniques have been successful. Communication approaches could use the contrast of “before and after” or “with and without” images. Messages targeting older farmers will be broadcasted through local radios and the project will include training of these older farmers in the use of phones and social media.
2.2 Capacity development plan elaborated and implemented to strengthen INRAPE’s capacities to characterize new climate-adapted Comorian agrobiodiversity products, and control the quality of export products. The project will build on the support provided by the Japanese government (source of co-financing) for the construction of a new multidisciplinary laboratory for INRAPE, which responds to the institutional assessments carried out as part of the UNDP project (2013-2016) for the development of a strategy to strengthen a sanitary and phytosanitary system (SPS) capable of supporting the development of the country's agricultural operations. The project will support the development of the capacities of this national laboratory so that the country has the necessary skills and equipment to carry out characterization studies independently and demonstrate the uniqueness of Comorian varieties, to certify and label them, and to preserve access to them for the benefit of the people of the country.
2.3 Web and mobile trading platforms developed to connect agricultural producers and buyers in national and international markets and ensure timely access to market information for climate resilient agricultural products. To enhance access to national markets, the project will build on the physical connectivity provided through WB co-financing for the rehabilitation of small ports to improve transportation between the islands, and on interventions carried out by development partners through projects aimed at improving the business climate. The GEF investment will focus on the development of a web and mobile trading platform to access market information and that connects actors in the agricultural value chains and agricultural service providers, processors, and buyers by taking advantage of the intervention of the International Trade Center (ITC) which set up a platform in Ndzuani to communicate price information of Comorian products to cooperatives (to be identified in the baseline). Support has been limited to Ndzuani so far because ITC targeted well-established cooperatives and avoid opportunistic ones set up to benefit from project support. The project will draw on this experience to replicate the successful interventions as well as the platform set up by UNDP to improve the competitiveness and accessibility of products and services. This platform can be used to provide agricultural advice and information by experts, and to offer services for the development of profitable agriculture. The connection of producers and traders makes it easier to find all the information on innovations and business opportunities in the agricultural and agrifood sector and facilitates the necessary dialogue to develop equitable benefit sharing agreements.
2.4 Awareness campaign conducted to enhance understanding by institutional and private actors of the sector of the climate change risks and adaptive measures. The project will carry out an awareness campaign targeting institutional and private actors involved in the agriculture sector, including smallholder farmers, and the general public, especially young people, on the ongoing and imminent devastating effects of climate change on agriculture and on new opportunities identified through the project interventions. The goals of the campaign will include demonstrating the potential revenue that can be generated to spark interest from young people and the private sector. This campaign will be conducted in collaboration with the chamber of commerce and business incubators. The awareness campaign will be an opportunity to promote the profession of farmer, by highlighting champion farmers and their success stories.
2.5 Negotiation and signature of agreements ensuring fair benefit sharing among actors in climate-resilient value chains. The project will identify and set up necessary processes and mechanisms required to ensure tangible and maximum benefits accrue to farmers through: (a) Dialogue facilitation between the private sector and representatives of local farmers to strengthen and formalize the links between these parties for the development of products that are integrated into value chains; (b) Development of business models (through which prices are determined) integrating the optimization of benefits for local farmers, rules for benefit sharing, and incentives to comply with the rules associated with targeted certifications. These models may provide for a contribution to the financing of CRDEs based on the user-pays principle; (c) Negotiation and signature of agreements with relevant actors in each value chain.
Component 3. Implementation of agroecological practices adapted to climate change in targeted intervention areas includes one outcome: Outcome 3. Increased adoption of climate-resilient practices and crops/varieties by smallholder farmers and value chain actors facilitated by support systems and adequate provision of inputs and resources. This outcome will be mainly the result of investments on the ground, following approaches to mitigate the risks associated with climate change, to develop a local, quality and low-cost supply of agricultural inputs, climate-adapted seeds, tools and small equipment to enable the adoption of climate-smart practices, and to support the implementation of a set of practices and approaches that strengthen the climate resilience of agricultural and livestock production. The strategy to achieve this outcome is based on initiating smallholder farmers to the concept of risk management, identifying approaches and practices whose effectiveness in reducing climate vulnerability has been demonstrated by CRDEs and supporting their adaptation by farmers, facilitating access to microcredit on terms adapted to the conditions of farmers, improving the local supply of agricultural inputs for increased adaptability, and developing incentives linked to effective and proven adoption of sustainable and climate-adapted production. To contribute to the sustainability of this outcome, the project will adopt an approach where any project contribution for protective structure (such as goat sheds, greenhouses and shade shelters) and equipment (such as micro-irrigation systems, small tools) will involve a counterpart (in-kind contribution as work) from the beneficiaries in order to promote ownership and maintenance. In addition, the income from part of the agricultural production linked to the use of the infrastructures will be allocated to the maintenance and renewal of the infrastructures. Maintenance will be carried out by an infrastructure management committee comprising users supervised by CRDE staff, such that the government should not have to invest further beyond the project for their replacement. The project will include training on maintenance and the importance of savings not only as a risk management strategy but also to ensure the maintenance and renewal of equipment and infrastructure that contribute to strengthen climate resilience of agricultural production.
3.1 Agronomic approaches and practices (e.g. water and soil conservation, crop diversification, mixed production systems, fodder cultivation and conservation, protective structures) developed and piloted by CRDEs to reduce climate vulnerability of the agricultural sector. The CRDEs will identify and pilot promising approaches to reduce the climate vulnerability of the agricultural activities of farmers in their territory. Successful practices will be promoted to farmers by relay farmers. Project interventions to better manage the risks associated with climate change will focus on: (a) raising awareness among farmers of the concept of risk management in the face of climate change and the adoption of sustainable strategies and practices that contribute to the health of agroecosystems and related services on which they depend (soil conservation, protection of pollinators, mixed production systems such as agroforestry, hedging and agropastoralism); (b) diversification of agricultural production and sources of income for households and small farmers in their plots (e.g., new climate-resilient crops and poultry breeding); (c) investments in protective structures such as greenhouses, shade shelters and goat sheds, and (d) the adoption of approaches and practices whose effectiveness in reducing the vulnerability of agriculture and livestock to new climatic conditions has been demonstrated by pilot tests carried out by the CRDEs.
Approaches to be tested and piloted by CRDEs include : (i) Wherever appropriate, the project will encourage the development of agroforestry systems where various associations of cash crops, fruit, food crops or livestock will be tested. Agroforestry systems provide multiple economic, environmental, and social benefits in a context of climate change through the protection of crops, livestock, soils and rivers, the diversification and spreading out of agricultural income through short, medium and long-term production of food products, fodder, wood and other non-timber products, in addition to other significant benefits such as the creation of habitats for biodiversity, landscape improvement, as well as carbon sequestration. Agroforestry can play a crucial role in improving resilience to uncertain climates through microclimate buffering and regulation of water flow. Promoting diversity through agroforestry systems will also increase the availability of alternatives for birds and reduce predation on valuable crops (which is aggravated by extended droughts). (ii) Diversification of tree and shrub species and establishment of living hedges to reduce exposure to strong winds whose frequency is increased by climate change. (iii) The construction of goat sheds for farmers communities to protect animals from extreme weather conditions, hedging (embocagement) and agropastoralism to reduce climate vulnerability and reduce pressures on natural ecosystems, growing legumes as fodder in the bocages, growing and storing dry fodder (hay) and producing silage for livestock feed. (iv) Practices for improving the moisture holding capacity of the soil (organic mulch and gravel), the use of compost to increase soil organic matter, and micro-irrigation to lengthen cultivation period and diversify the cultivated varieties. (v) Water and wind erosion mitigation by the adoption of practices that promote soil cohesion, such as the use of cover crops, compost and green manure, the use of soil conservation and restoration techniques such as the construction of stone walls and anti-erosion lines planted with vetiver. Vetiver is a beneficial, inexpensive, and easy-to-maintain means of protection. Thanks to its resilience capacity in a wide range of ecological and climatic conditions, vetiver is effective in preventing and combating soil erosion in a climate change context. Yet, its use is not known in the Comoros and it is currently difficult to find. (vi) To help maintain healthy populations of pollinators, the project will conduct an assessment of threats affecting them (e.g. bee parasites, bushfires and pesticides such as neonicotinoids), identify control measures to be implemented, required resources, and actors to be mobilized.
3.2 Financial products developed and made accessible to smallholder farmers to support the adoption of climate-resilient practices. Project interventions will involve (a) raising smallholder farmers’ awareness on savings and credit as a risk management approach, building on interventions planned under the WB PIDC project (identified as co-financing to this project) which aim to encourage savings in the SANDUKs micro-credit institution, and providing financial education; and (b) facilitating access to suitable financing through negotiations with local micro-credit institutions (SANDUKs) for the development of credit products adapted to the reality of farmers, i.e. credit at low rates tied to firm loan conditions to invest in climate-smart productive activities, and repayment schemes adapted to agricultural production cycles, thus contributing to reducing the risks for farmers’ investments. Risk reduction measures (eg capacity building of micro-credit institutions, communication and marketing support) to be put in place will be examined within the framework of the PPG.
3.3 Local supply of agricultural inputs, small-scale equipment and climate-resistant varieties seeds developed. The project will help reduce dependence on external supplies and increase the autonomy and adaptability of farmers to climate change by: (a) strengthening CRDEs capacities to produce quality seeds of climate-adapted crops and varieties meeting the needs of farmers (for self-sustaining agriculture) and the needs of the target markets (for cash crops), and by supporting this production, (b) supporting artisanal microenterprises involved in the recycling of metal waste for the manufacture of tools and adapted micro-irrigation systems (recovery of metal waste and abandoned car wreck) to manufacture agricultural tools meeting the needs of smallholders, (c) improving the capacities of microenterprises currently involved in the artisanal making of low-cost drip irrigation systems to meet the needs of farmers and cooperatives involved in the project; (d) developing capacities to produce organic fertilizer and supporting this production. The capacity development needs and resources available to support trainings will be identified during the project preparation (PPG).
3.4 Agricultural practices to strengthen agriculture and pastoral resilience, including the provision of climate-adapted crop varieties and breeds, implemented. The project will provide support for the implementation of farm and agro-pastoral plans at the individual and cooperative levels (developed under Output 1.3) through the adoption of practices and approaches that strengthen climate resilience (as identified and demonstrated under the output 3.1), for the establishment of nurseries and seed reserves, for soil conservation and restoration activities, including composting and green manure, and for implementing micro-irrigation systems. The project will support the use of protective structures and the adoption of mixed systems combining livestock, agriculture, fodder cultivation and trees, including agroforestry, hedging (embocagement), agro-pastoralism, and soil conservation and restoration, helping to restore soil productive capacity and other ecosystem services (water, fodder, pollinators, and carbon capture) that contribute to climate resilience of agroecosystems. The solutions proposed by the project will be to reduce soil erosion and increase diversity within crop plots and agroforestry systems, which in turn, will reduce the vulnerability of agricultural systems to pests and diseases which occurrence is increased as a result of climate change (as presented in the section on Effects of climate change on the agroecosystem and agricultural practices as experienced by smallholder farmers - Part II: Project Justification, 1a. Project Description) as fields that support a variety of crops are less attractive to predatory insects. The project will contribute to halt agricultural encroachment at the expense of forests (mostly within protected areas) by improving the productivity of agricultural plots, by restoring plots where soil is degraded, by collaborating with the authorities responsible for protected areas to ensure that agricultural activities within village terroirs are conducted in harmony with the conservation objectives of protected areas, and by promoting mixed systems such as agroforestry that promote biodiversity.
Under the PPG, the need to invest in infrastructure to channel water from structures set up by the UNDP-GEF CRCCA and UNDP-GCF projects to the plots of CRDEs and farmers will be assessed.
3.5 Incentives (traceability and certification) in place to foster the adoption of climate resilient and sustainable practices across traditional and new value chains. This will include the following: (a) Certifications. The introduction of incentives to encourage the adoption of high-quality standards including climate-smart practices and varieties, organic farming and fair trade, to access higher added value niche markets, will help encourage farmers to maintain practices that promote resilience to climate change and ensure the financial sustainability of these adaptation measures. The selected certification will define a set of criteria that will be integrated into specifications to be followed by the various actors involved in the various stages of the value chain. These criteria should include adaptation measures to ensure climate resilience. A national committee composed of independent experts will be responsible for verifying the compliance of the various stages related to production (including cultivation, harvesting, storage, processing, transport) with the requirements of the specifications for the product to be eligible for certification. The criteria to be met for certification will be distributed to the producers concerned. The project will support value chain actors to gain access to these certifications and will also support the integration of climate resilience into the certification processes set up as part of the projects supported respectively by the WB and AFD (source of co-financing) for cloves and vanilla in other intervention sites. (b) Transparency and technology. Technology (e.g. blockchain) is available and can be used to ensure transparency through product traceability at all stages of the value chain by tracking the social and environmental impacts of products at every stage of their value chain, from local farmers to consumers, and thus support certification process. The project will assess the relevance, applicability (with users) and profitability of using a platform (via an application) to track and verify that each step in the value chain throughout the production process, meets adaptation criteria that can make these value chains more climate resilient. Using this tool, each step in the process is verified and recorded with time, date and geolocation as a secondary means of verification. (c) Facilitating change. To reduce farmers' reluctance to change and improve the efficiency of the transmission of technical knowledge to illiterate farmers, the project will adopt a strategy to through demonstration at the level of CRDEs, close supervision and long-term follow-up ensured by relay farmers. This transmission will be supported by the production of illustrated technical sheets, and the organization of visits - by and for the farmers - of sites where successful practices have stood the test of time, such as the plots developed through embocagement in the Nioumakélé (Ndzuani). The relay farmers involved in such a scheme will be identified and remunerated by the CRDE and thus become key partners in providing local support to farmers. At the same time, the project will put in place incentives to make the sector more attractive to young people. (d) Improvement of the perception of the farming profession. In order to change the negative perception of the farming profession by young people, the project will support an awareness campaign led by young people involved in value chains which will highlight the potential medium and long-term benefits of this profession. The awareness campaign may be supported by spot messages in the media and on the packaging of commonly used agricultural products.
Component 4: Knowledge Management, Monitoring-Evaluation, and Gender and PWDs’ Inclusiveness. This component will enable mainstreaming transversal issues of knowledge management and gender and PWDs inclusiveness into other project components and outputs focusing on knowledge and on gender. Knowledge management is critical not only for the achievement of the project’s objective, but for the sustainability of achieved results and replicability of climate-resilient solutions. Documenting, analysing and addressing gender and PWD issues as cross-cutting elements will allow to develop inclusive solutions to the climate adaptation challenge in agriculture, and ensure that men, women and PWDs benefit equally from the project support and that the concerns and experiences of women and of PWDs are an integral part of the implementation and monitoring and evaluation of the project. Lessons and successful experiences will be captured through the participatory monitoring and evaluation as part of the project annual planning process, through the participatory development of agroclimatic knowledge involving actively farmers, CRDEs, and researchers in a co-learning process, and recording and disseminating successful experiences among CRDEs, and with other relevant stakeholders in the country and in the region.
Outcome 4 Improved development, management, and dissemination of knowledge related to adaptation of the agricultural sector to climate change to support the replication of climate-resilient solutions among CRDEs, and at national and regional scale. This outcome will be achieved through the following outputs:
4.1 .Lessons learned from the project interventions documented and disseminated. This will be achieved through the annual monitoring and evaluation of project achievements using the indicators of the strategic results framework, and the identification and dissemination of related learnings with project partners, including projects in areas aimed at strengthening the climate resilience of agriculture, in the Comoros and in the countries of the region. Along with capacity building of CRDEs, and interventions on knowledge development and improvement of access to information, the project will support the management of knowledge developed through participatory monitoring and evaluation (involving beneficiaries) of project interventions, including the development of climate-adapted agricultural practices and their adoption by farmers, the improvement of the climate resilience in all segments of the various value chains and the development of new value chans for climate-resilient crops.
4.2 Agro-climatic knowledge for climate adaptation developed through strengthened monitoring and research-action involving farmers. CRDEs must become a place of experimentation, development, demonstration, teaching and promotion of new climate-adapted practices and crops and thus be at the heart of the generation and dissemination of technical knowledge allowing to adapt the agricultural sector. This learning and dissemination mechanism must also be deployed outside the CRDEs and set up within the plots of farmers who are experimenting with new approaches, techniques and varieties in order to involve them in the monitoring and evaluation of the results of these innovations and thus encourage their appropriation of successful approaches. Knowledge development may be based on interventions such as the following: (a) Contribution to the national database on agricultural yields and production developed by the FAO. This will involve training technicians within CRDEs on data collection, the use of GPS and entering observations into the database at the level of each CRDE, and the compilation of simple statistics to generate and disseminate technical knowledge and enable the agricultural sector to adapt to climate change. (b) Action-research programs involving farmers. This will involve establishing the necessary partnerships with INRAPE, the UdC including the University of Patsy (Ndzuani), the National Horticultural Center of Mvouni (Ngazidja), the CRDEs, relay farmers and farmers to carry out participatory action-research programs to generate new technical knowledge to adapt the agricultural sector to climate change. The possibility of associating one or more regional institutions to support research and training will be explored during the PPG (University of Reunion, National Center for Applied Research in Rural Development (FOFIFA) (Madagascar) and CGIAR (Réunion).
4.3 Tools for experience and knowledge-sharing among CRDEs and actors in value chains are developed and operationalized. This will include the following: (a) The project will recruit a communication officer to coordinate the sharing of information through the development of short, practical guides in the form of booklets or illustrated sheets for farmers to record best practices and facilitate their adoption and follow-up in the local communities served by the targeted CRDEs as well as in all the CRDEs. (b) The project will support the experience-sharing mechanism among CRDEs and between CRDEs and farmers through a platform specific to CRDEs (under development with the support of a Comorian office). The project will support the consolidation of the digital platform set up within the CRDE network to, among other things, facilitate the exchange of information and the sharing of experiences between all actors in the value chains and create bridges between different segments, namely between producers and buyers. (c) The project will support the production of an online newsletter to share information relating to the adaptation and climate resilience of the agricultural sector, including activities and events linked or not to the project, including thematic articles, reports and interviews produced by CRDEs teams.
4.4 Gender and PWDs action plans based on comprehensive analyses are implemented, monitored, and evaluated to promote an inclusive approach to the adoption of a climate-resilient agriculture. During the PPG, an exhaustive gender analysis will be carried out to document gender issues in the agricultural sector and identify specific gender barriers. Based on this analysis, a gender action plan will be developed to be implemented, monitored, and evaluated as part of the project. Also, an analysis of the issues related to people living with disabilities (PWDs) in the agricultural sector will be carried out to identify the barriers specific to PWDs and to develop an action plan to increase their inclusion in the efforts to adapt the agriculture sector to climate change. The adoption of an inclusive approach towards gender, PWDs and youth to improve equity in value chains and access to income-generating activities, will involve the following: (a) The project will seek to improve income equity within value chains and improve the involvement of women, especially the elderly, and PWDs, in income-generating agricultural activities by promoting small scale family farming (e.g., family garden near the house, poultry farming). The project will promote the adoption of a more inclusive approach in identifying solutions designed within families. (b) The importance of demonstrating new practices and varieties will be essential to increase the motivation of young family members to support older ones. The development of specialized professions within value chains, such as the production of seeds, artisan scrap metal workers, or manufacturing biodegradable packaging, will diversify the types of jobs accessible to different segments of society. (c) In certain sites, according to their will, the project could support groups and associations to set up cooperatives (dairy, food, market garden cooperatives) or to strengthen their capacities allowing certain sections of the value chain to be integrated within of the cooperative, for example collection or processing, and improve profitability for all members of the cooperative.
 Bourgoin C, Parker L, Martínez-Valle A, Mwongera C, Läderach P. 2017. Une évaluation spatialement explicite de la vulnérabilité du secteur agricole au changement climatique dans l'Union des Comores. Work Document No. 205. CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS). Wageningen, Les Pays-Bas. Available from: www.ccafs.cgiar.org
 Mwongera C. Nowak A., Notenbaert A.M.O, Grey S., Osiemo J., Kinyua I. Lizarazo M. et E. Girvetz. 2019. Climate-Smart Agricultural Value Chains: Risks and Perspectives. in T.S. Rosenthal et al. (eds.) The Climate-Smart Agriculture Papers.
 ECOCROP is a software tool that identifies 2568 plant species for given environments and uses (food, fodder, energy, erosion control, industrial purposes) which also contains a library of crop environmental requirements.
 The tool could present the following information: 1. Crop calendar indicating for each month what must be done for each crop (sowing, cultivation, flowering, harvesting), taking into account current meteorological data and, if relevant, the various cultivation areas. 2. Agroecological practices sheets covering, as useful, the following subjects: a) Culture sheets (for all traditional and new crops supported by the project): botanical information, cultural practices, pests and diseases, physiological disorders (symptoms, possible causes, solutions); b) Cultivation without harmful pesticides: control methods, natural or low impact pesticides; c) Plot maintenance; d) Irrigation: practices to minimize water requirements, rainwater harvesting, manual watering systems and micro-irrigation; e) Fertilization: knowledge of the nature of the soil, assessment of needs and different options for amending it; f) Composting: Preparation of various types of compost to meet different needs; g) Seed production. 3. Diseases, pests, weeds and invasive alien species (IAS): Sheets on the main problems affecting crops, including new diseases and pests recently introduced or favored by climate change: a) identification of the problem: description of signs and symptoms, photos of the effects on the different plants affected by the pest or disease; b) advice for prevention and control (favorable conditions, screening, preventive measures, physical and biological control)
 For example, compared to clove and ylang-ylang which require large areas (6m x 6m) and which cannot be harvested for several years after planting, ginger can be grown on an area of 0.25m x 0.25m, pepper and coffee can be integrated into agroforestry systems, and all can be processed locally to create local added value.
 For example, endemic varieties of bananas, yams, aromatic and medicinal plants, low caffeine coffee, high vanillin vanilla, ginger, nutmeg, aloe vera, large thyme, vetiver, turmeric, Plectranthus both Cuban Oregano type and Indian Borage type
 National Research Institute for Agriculture, Fisheries and the Environment
 With its developed and resistant roots, vetiver protects embankments and terraces, fertilizes and improves soil structure, and fights against pollution, erosion and flooding. It tolerates acid or alkaline soils (with pH from 3.0 to 10.5), saline soils or soils with high levels of metals and resists extreme climatic variations such as prolonged drought, floods, submersions as well as extreme temperatures ranging from 14°C to 55°C. After being affected by drought, salinity and other adverse conditions, this plant has the ability to re-grow very quickly when conditions improve.
 Bushfires can be started by pastoralists and by farmers who practice slash-and-burn agriculture. Since herders do not cultivate fodder, they depend on natural fodder which is increasingly affected by the lengthening of the drought period. Herders thus resort to bushfires, despite being illegal, to improve the palatability of pasture grasses. Often left unattended and uncontrolled, they spread over large areas and are harmful to the biodiversity of the affected forest areas, including pollinator species.
 The protected areas of the Comoros have been delineated by integrating villages and agricultural lands within their boundaries.
 FOFIFA is Madagascar's main agricultural research organization and conducts research on coffee varieties in the region including the Comoros
Outcome 1: Enhanced capacity of national institutions and actors involved in agricultural development to guide, plan, supervise and implement climate-resilient practices.
Outcome 2: Increased resilience of agricultural actors through the identification and promotion of new climate-resilient value chain options with good prospects for profitability, increased access to national and international market information and equitable benefit sharing.
Outcome 3: Increased adoption of climate-resilient practices and crops/varieties by smallholder farmers and value chains actors facilitated by support systems and adequate provision of inputs and resources.
Outcome 4: Improved development, management and dissemination of knowledge related to adaptation of the agricultural sector to climate change to support the replication of climate-resilient solutions among CRDEs, nationally and in the region.
Barrier 1. Insufficient capacities at different levels to plan and implement innovative agro-pastoral practices adapted to changing climatic conditions, oversee their adoption and train relevant parties.
(i) Limited capacities of CRDEs to provide local advisory, extension and agricultural support services to adapt practices to climate change: The weak capacities of CRDEs do not allow them to adequately fulfill their mandate, which is to supervise agricultural development, due to i) insufficient staffing caused by the constraint of hiring staff within the civil service, and ii) deficient skills. In some cases, the staff in place do not have the skills required to fulfill the functions entrusted to them (especially in the case of partisan recruitment) and certain profiles defined within CRDE staff - in particular planning and monitoring-evaluation - are not fulfilled. On the one hand, many technicians working in CRDEs are inadequately trained and have clearly insufficient technical capacities. On the other hand, technicians with adequate skills are available but are not recruited due to recruitment constraints within the public service. The CRDEs do not have the necessary resources to ensure the salary of the technicians who have acquired relevant work experience through their involvement in the CRCCA project. As a result, some CRDEs are not sufficiently operational, are understaffed and have insufficiently qualified staff. Continuing education opportunities for staff, especially to be better able to face the challenges of climate adaptation, are limited by the lack of a relevant curriculum in academic institutions. (ii) Insufficient capacities of the various actors responsible for planning, developing, disseminating climate-resilient practices is another key obstacle to their widespread adoption and implementation. Such capacity gaps exsit for the following actors and include: Insufficient technical capacity of state actors (DNSAE, regional directorates of Agriculture, CRDEs), local authorities (municipalities - mayors and councillors), non-state actors (national NGOs), and the private sector (especially for cash crops: collectors, vanilla preparers, exporters) to identify, develop and implement strategies and tools to oversee the adaptation to climate change of long-term agro-pastoral activities. (iii) The vulnerability of farmers is linked in particular to a lack of know-how and adaptive capacity and weak entrepreneurial capacities. Farmers and breeders have little mastery of sustainable cultivation techniques (soil preparation, organic fertilization, selection and access to adapted varieties, fodder cultivation, irrigation, pest and disease control), and lack the knowledge, know-how and models to adapt their practices on land that has lost its fertility, in unpredictable and restrictive hygrometric conditions, and to develop sustainable agriculture that strengthen climate resilience, including agro-pastoralism and agroforestry. The practices and calendars that have traditionally guided farmers are no longer adequate in the face of new climate conditions. The poor computer literacy and lack of openness to technological innovation of older farmers further limit their ability to adapt their practices to the challenges posed by climate change. (iv) There is insufficient technical knowledge and access to guidance /advice and information on technical pathways, technologies, infrastructure and markets to support the transition of agricultural systems to greater climate resilience based on healthier ecosystems. The traditional cropping calendar is inadequate; farmers still rely on predictions of elders based on unscientific practices, lack the knowledge for the identification and treatment of diseases and pests, and do not know enough about the diversification opportunities achievable in the Comoros. Short-term weather conditions are available and adequately cover the country, but the data is not translated into a crop calendar. Knowledge of parasite and disease infestations is insufficient and inadequately disseminated (mandate of INRAPE). Lack of information on prices (especially for cash crops) limits negotiating capacities. Access to information about market opportunities and requirements is inadequate.
Barrier 2. Lack of knowledge of alternative climate-adapted options with the potential to support a prosperous, diversified and equitable agricultural economy and insufficient political and private support for their adoption.
The vulnerability of Comorian agriculture to the effects of climate change is largely due to its lack of diversity and lack of knowledge and capacity to identify and develop alternative climate-resilient value chain options, and to assess their productive and commercial potential. In fact, the agricultural sector in Comoros is based on a narrow base limited to three cash crops and a few vegetable and food crops vulnerable to the effects of climate change. Furthermore, Comorian food products, which are mainly de facto organic, are more expensive than imported products despite the transport costs associated with imports. Imported food and vegetable crops, mainly from Tanzania and Madagascar, are grown industrially and therefore at lower cost. Consumers who can afford it prefer local products because they recognize the superior quality of organic terroir products. However, consumers with limited means are more likely to be reluctant or unable to buy it. The higher cost of local Comorian products is explained by the artisanal nature of the work, the remoteness of certain production areas which hamper access to local markets, and lack of access to market information for CRDEs, farmers, cooperatives, and other value chain actors. As a result, traditional agriculture is unprofitable, particularly in rural areas remote from urban markets, which limits young people's interest in this profession. Constraints to the fluidity of national markets, limited market connectivity (national and international), and lack of access to market information limit sustainable economic opportunities for smallholder farmers, due in particular to the country's insular nature, geographic remoteness, lack of reliable and regular transportation means between islands and suitable port infrastructure and lack of connection with reliable and predictable buyers. The profitability of agricultural activity is even more limited for smallholder farmers who are not integrated into cooperatives. They are therefore particularly vulnerable to other actors in the value chains who may take precedence in determining the conditions of production and the prices granted for the products, resulting in an inequitable sharing of profits. Another significant limitation to the profitability of Comorian agricultural products is the lack of processing and marketing capacities.
The diversification of agriculture through the development of new climate-resilient options that would give an edge in international markets, such as uniqueness of properties, is hampered by the lack of analytical capacity to perform the required characterization analyses. The Comoros agrobiodiversity, e.g. local coffee and ginger varieties, have unique characteristics that could be leveraged in niche markets. These characteristics must be documented and certified on the basis of biological and physico-chemical analyses which, currently, must be carried out by laboratories located in countries whose commercial interests may be in competition with Comorian interests, in addition to requiring complex logistics for the transport of samples to be analyzed.
Public and private investments for building the climate resilience of agricultural value chains and their diversification are limited due to the widespread negative perception of agriculture in Comorian society, coupled with the lack of awareness of its vulnerability to climate change and of its potential to evolve into a productive and resilient sector by decision-makers and investors disconnected from the reality on the ground. Another obstacle to improving the climate-resilience of agricultural practices is linked to the low attractiveness of agricultural activity for the younger generations who perceive the profession as obsolete and too risky because they do not have the assets or capital to deal with the risks inherent in adopting innovative agricultural practices. Faced with the urgency of daily needs, the elderly - who constitute a large part of the smallholders - are reluctant to adopt new practices because of resistance to change when facing new technologies, of too large gap between significant labor-intensive investments for soil conservation and restoration and other climate-adapted practices and the achievement of tangible effects, in a context where their livelihoods are precarious and known alternatives limited, leading them to pursue unsustainable land management practices for small short-term gains.
Barrier 3. Limited use of technologies and approaches to mitigate climate-related risks and low access to credit on appropriate terms to support smallholder farmers’ shift towards climate resilient agricultural value chains.
The adoption of resilient agricultural practices and approaches is hampered by the weak capacity to manage risks and uncertainties generated by climate change which is linked to the lack of knowledge on alternative options (barrier 2), on risk management approaches and on agricultural practices that increase resilience to climate change. Low financial autonomy and the difficulty of access to credit on appropriate terms for farmers, especially for men, worsens vulnerability to climate risks, and the culture of savings is insufficiently widespread in rural areas. Insufficient or lack of savings makes smallholder farmers very vulnerable to the effects of climate change since they do not have the resources to, for example, buy seeds for a second sowing following the failure of the first due to shifted or adverse weather conditions, or to purchase the equipment needed to adopt agricultural practices that increase climate resilience.
Lack of timely access to affordable agricultural inputs: Micro-irrigation equipment, tools, and seeds of varieties resilient to the new climatic conditions are difficult to access because they are imported and expensive. The lack of autonomous and timely local production of quality seeds and local supply of low-cost equipment maintains the dependence of farmers on external suppliers and results in prohibitive costs for the supply of suitable seeds, micro-irrigation equipment and with suitable tools
Lack of access to arable land due to the shortage and degradation of agricultural land and land tenure insecurity: Many plots are no longer fertile due to unsustainable soil management and support is needed to ensure restoration of soil fertility by techniques of soil conservation and restoration, agroforestry and agropastoralism, such as hedging. Also, the farmers who operate the state plots rent them out on the basis of an annual contract which allows them to cultivate them (about 10,000 KMF (≈ $ 23) per year). This situation is not conducive to the investments needed for the adaptation of agricultural practices.
Barrier 4: Limited consolidation and dissemination of knowledge on successful models and strategies (including developed by farmers) for the adaptation of agricultural practices to climate risks hinders their large-scale replication and limits the impact of efforts aimed at climate adaptation of agricultural value chains. CRDEs and national institutions concerned with climate adaptation of the agricultural sector do not have access to a sound knowledge base built from reliable data to support expert advice to manage climate risks appropriately and integrate it into agricultural land development plans and other guidance tools to support farmers in their decision-making. Farmers are thus left to resort to their traditional knowledge and non-adapted crop calendars and tools leading to inappropriate timing for agricultural works and maladapted practices, which results in a significant decrease and even a loss of yields.
Knowledge of climate-smart practices by all agricultural stakeholders is limited and not adequately recorded and disseminated. Also, the limited access of actors in agricultural value chains to appropriate information on agriculture, livestock, and climate prevents them from integrating climate risks into their decision-making. There is hardly any research being done in agriculture, and even less on the adaptation of the agricultural environment to climate change, whether by INRAPE, the University of the Comoros or the National Horticultural Center. In recent years, rare agricultural censuses have been carried out sporadically. There is currently no systematic monitoring of agricultural production at the national level, nor involvement of producers in the monitoring and evaluation of productions resulting from the adoption of new practices. Currently, the collection of agricultural data is limited to farmers supervised by CRDEs and to the production of CRDEs. Each CRDE collects data separately following a protocol defined by partners (through projects), so that the data cannot be compiled to give an overview of agricultural production in the country. The dissemination of knowledge developed by CRDEs is mainly through relay-farmers and limited to farmers in their territory and is not shared with all other CRDEs, even less so with other farmers, so that farmers who depend on poorly performing CRDEs have limited exposure to adaptation solutions that could improve the climate resilience of their agricultural activities. Capacities to develop and access best practices, information and technical know-how to support the development of guidelines for climate change adaptation in agriculture are nascent and need to be strengthened.
Barrier 5: Limited understanding of challenges and barriers specific to women and persons with disabilities (PWDs) in adopting practices that promote agricultural climate resilience. Limited understanding of women and PWDs specific challenges and barriers limits the design and implementation of appropriate measures to address them and adopt an inclusive approach when strengthening agricultural resilience. Statistics show that the agricultural sector employs more women than men in the Comoros (CDN 2021). According to an ongoing project, 75% of farmers in Mwali are women. However, although women work more than men, men are much more often the owners of agricultural land and cultural traditions reduce the participation of women in decision-making. Women are mainly responsible for food crops and market gardening and in poultry farming. They also work in cash crops but very little in their marketing. Gender-specific differences, needs, roles, climatic and socio-economic vulnerabilities and priorities regarding different tasks across agricultural value chains have evolved in recent years, may vary among islands, and are not clearly documented. People living with disabilities (PWDs) are present in all communities but are mostly kept out so that they cannot earn a fair living, nor contribute to the economy and national growth. Although their representation within the population is not adequately documented in the absence of a comprehensive demographic census, it is estimated that over 60% of PWDs have never attended school and 67% are inactive. Although new approaches and techniques that are less labor intensive are now available, PWDs are not encouraged to get involved in value chains. Lack of awareness of the obstacles to the integration of PWDs into agricultural value chains and their equitable access to the resulting benefits limits the development of solutions.
Such knowledge is essential for designing interventions where women and PWDs will be fully involved in all stages of the project, including those that involve decision-making and planning, capacity building that meets their specific needs, and concrete support for the application of climate-resilient agricultural practices. Also, women representation in governance bodies within CRDEs, cooperatives, unions, and other instances across the value chains is not representative of their actual participation in the sector. Without adopting a fully inclusive and participatory approach with particular attention to women, youth and PWDs, projects cannot ensure that vulnerable community members benefit equitably from the CRDEs extension services, such as demonstrations and close support for the adoption of climate-adapted practices and varieties that contribute to a sustainable development of agriculture in the future. A specific focus on women and PWDs and their economic empowerment is crucial for the sustainability of the long-term solution proposed by the project and, more generally, for the resolution of gender-related issues for a climate-resilient development.
T The use of pesticides is limited in Comoros due to their unavailability and high cost.
 PREFER project, quoted on March 13, 2022 in the Gazette des Comores.
 UNDP 2021, Country Programme Document
Strengthening the resilience of small farmers through Climate Smart Agriculture techniques in the Tahoua Region of Niger
The population of Niger more than tripled in 30 years. 51.6% of this population is under 15 years old. This population is essentially rural (83.8%) and derives most of its income from the exploitation of natural resources. The level of extreme poverty remains very high at 41.4% in 2019, affecting more than 9.5 million people. This poverty particularly affects woman-headed households. 60% of women and 75% of female-headed households are under the poverty line. The country’s economy, food security and the livelihoods of its rural communities are extremely vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, with an increasingly hot and dry climate and major fluctuation in rainfall across years. Increasing temperatures and increasing rainfall variability have severe impacts on agriculture, which is the main source of income and livelihoods for 87% of the national population.
The proposed “Strengthening the resilience of small farmers through Climate Smart Agriculture (PRP-AIC) techniques in the Tahoua Region of Niger” project will support producers to adapt to the adverse effects of climate change on their production. Exposure of fields to flood and silting will be reduced through climate smart agriculture and restoration of production areas as well as surrounding ecosystems. Indeed, restoration practices are currently not systematically adopted by farmers due to the perceived loss of arable lands through these practices. With the visible impacts of climate change, farmers tend to seek expand their agricultural land, at the expense of surrounding ecosystems. This further increases their vulnerability, with the increasing risk of a total crop loss during climate shocks such as flood and drought. Restoration practices will be part of the project’s comprehensive approach, with complementary interventions that provide directly perceivable benefits. The project will provide more immediate solutions for farmers to climate change by introducing climate-smart agriculture practices, thereby increasing yields and reducing vulnerability to climate change. Projects outputs are closely related to land restoration, enabling farmers to organize into functional farmers groups to improve access to local finance, including government funding. A sustainable private financing mechanism will also be set up to finance agriculture practices resilient to climate change, benefiting vulnerable people, with a focus on women and youth.
Component 1: Land restoration for climate resilience of agricultural production systems
Outcome 1.1: Degraded land is restored to protect agricultural production systems against the adverse impacts of climate change
This component will align with the GGWI to strengthen the resilience of vulnerable farmers against the adverse impacts of climate change. While the GGWI has had limited results to date, with only 15% currently underway after more than 10 years of implementation, and most of the action plan for Niger still outstanding,, early experiences, including from other countries (in particular Senegal) will be highly relevant to identify sustainable and adaptive practices. The project will build on a combination of traditional practices and modern/innovative approaches to restore lands and benefit farmers, including lessons learned from ongoing projects such as the project to Strengthen the Resilience of Rural Communities to Food and Nutritional Insecurity in Niger which will support the recovery of degraded land in Tahoua (estimated co-financing of US$10,000,000). Projects supporting pastoralism, including addressing conflicts between farmers and herders, such as the Regional Project to support Pastoralism in the Sahel, will also complement the restoration activities under this component by creating a peaceful discussion platform for exchange, including for the protection of restored ecosystems (estimated co-financing of US$ 5,000,000).
Indeed, fully functioning ecosystems will improve water retention and reduce the impacts of floods and droughts on vulnerable farming land. During the PPG phase, an analysis of past and present land use and the restoration of degraded areas, taking into account the projected changes in climate will be conducted to better define restoration activities. Preliminary consultations during the PIF formulation phase identified past successful experiences implemented through past and ongoing adaptation projects such as the Community-based adaptation project (funded by the LDCF) with the introduction of farmer-managed regeneration, half moons, benches, rocky outcrops, planting of trees of adapted species and Assisted Natural Regeneration (ANR) practices. The illustrations below present some NbS successfully introduced in Tahoua, as observed during the field visits conducted in March 2022.
In addition, because of the importance of domestic fuelwood consumption in the project area, causing an overexploitation of wood resources, and in turn, soil and ecosystem degradation, the project will conduct trainings and awareness raising for the adoption of improved stoves and other fuelwood efficient practices within surrounding communities, where reforestation, afforestation and agroforestry will be implemented. This output will be conducted in close coordination with output 3.1.2. to support and provide incentives to local entrepreneurs to offer and disseminate a range of fuelwood efficient practices and equipment (including improved stoves) in surrounding villages. This will reduce the pressure on forest ressources and ensure the sustainability of the project. During the PPG phase, the project will also explore opportunities under the UNISS (UN Integrated Strategy for the Sahel) programme, led by UNDP Energy offer for the Sahel. The project aims to increase access to clean energy for improved basic services and enhanced value chains, in particular in the agricultural sector. A pipeline of flagship joint projects is currently being developed to operationalize the offer and might offer potential for supporting the access to clean energy promoted under the LDCF project.
This component will have important mitigation and biodiversity co-benefits by restoring and preserving ecosystems that provide CO2 sequestration and provide living environments for the fauna and flora to thrive. It will also directly fits within the GGWI and aligns with its geographical and technical scope, including its focus on restoring ecosystems for food security. The project will be implemented through the following outputs:
Output 1.1.1. : Awareness raising and training programmes are conducted to sensitise local authorities and communities and equip them with information, skills and knowledge to support ecosystem restoration practices
Under this output, the project will work with local leaders as key partners during project design and implementation, to ensure their buy-in and their involvement in the sustainability and expansion of successful restoration practices. The engagement of local authorities and decentralized state agents will be ensured by setting up clear monitoring frameworks for the protection of restored ecosystems in the long-term. Local and regional planning and financing will be revised and supported to introduce the protection of ecosystems and the adoption and upscaling of NbS. In addition, the project will establish or strengthen local committees involving beneficiary farmer groups for natural resources management.
Community groups will be involved in the targeted areas to ensure a common understanding and engagement in restoration activities. These measures will be implemented and the upscaling of the restoration activities achieved through the funding mechanisms set up under output 3.1.1, thereby increasing the access to funding for these groups in the long-term and ensuring the sustained protection of restored ecosystems.
Awareness raising and sensitization will be conducted with local communities to discuss the long-term benefits of preserving ecosystems for the agricultural production and food security at the local level. The discussions will cover the impacts of climate change; key ecosystems such as wetlands, savannahs and forests; their linkages with production systems; the climate change adaptive benefits they offer. In addition, the discussions will support the documentation of existing traditional knowledge, sustainable practices and agriculture knowledge, to build on local experience for restoration activities.
Under this output, the project will also create links with the stakeholders involved with the GGWI, in Niger and in other regions. Effective communication will be built along the entire project to share lessons learned and results from the project and build on the results of other activities conducted under the GGWI. Effective communication channels will be established with the focal points in the ministries involved in the implementation of the GGWI (the National Agency of the GGW under the Ministry of Environment and the Fight against Desertification, the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Community Development).
Output 1.1.2. Degraded ecosystems surrounding the farming areas are restored with the adoption of Nature-based Solutions
Based on the analysis of past and present land-use to be conducted during the PPG phase, restoration and protective practices will be introduced. The consultation conducted at PIF formulation stage identified a range of successful NbS that will be analyzed and considered to be introduced and/or upscaled in the project areas. Local communities will be engaged in the identification of restoration activities, as well as during the implementation of these activities, providing local employment and building on and strengthening local practices. NbS practices identified include Zaï technique, half-moons, ANR, surface water dissipation techniques,mulching techniques, stone cordons, stone walls and stone lockers.
NbS will be introduced to restore degraded areas, increase the vegetation cover, protect forests, savannahs and wetlands from conversion to other types of occupation and reduce silting and water erosion (gullying) along watercourses. These practices will be introduced in areas surrounding agricultural lands, in order to provide large-scale adaptive benefits. Restoring key surrounding ecosystems will provide important ecosystem services to farmers by increasing the water recharge, reducing land slides and water runoff during floods, increasing biodiversity.
Lessons learned will be systematically collected and compiled into actionable knowledge products and shared withe farming communities and other land users in the project intervention areas and other projects in Tahoua and in the GGW area. This knowledge will be particularly relevant for the community groups targeted under output 1.1.1 for the replication and upscaling of practices in the project area and beyond.
The Social and Environmental safeguards work conducted during the PIF and to be developed at PPG stage and during implementation will guide and recommend the selection process of degraded land plots to be restored. This work will ensure Free Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) is obtained from beneficiaries and impacted communities. The necessary studies and assessments will be conducted to avoid the risk of land grabbing by the project and/or land used for other purpose by some communities to be turned into another land use, thereby adversely impacting their livelihoods, In addition, the project will support community land-use planning, through the consultations and local contracts and/or the formulation of local development plans.
Output 1.1.3. : Energy-saving equipment is promoted to reduce deforestation for firewood consumption
Considering the devastating impacts of increasing pressure on timber for household consumption and the consequences on protective ecosystems, this output will aim at changing the behavior of the rising generation in the use of wood energy. To do this, awareness-raising actions will be carried out throughout the project, targeting young people. A youth education campaign will be conducted to raise awareness of the accelerated depletion of local and national wood energy resources and its consequences on ecosystems and ecosystem services, and to advocate for the adoption of cooking equipment with low wood energy consumption and sustainable management. The project will closely coordinate with the activities conducted under the outcome 3 to incentivize supported MSEs to provide energy-efficient technologies to reduce fuelwood consumption. This will be ensured by conducting demonstration for the use and production of energy efficient equipment and demonstrate the viability of such investments. For instance, cook stoves are expected to reduce by 20% to 30% the wood consumption of beneficiary households. This campaign will be conducted through various channels: (i) trainings of young entrepreneurs, including through the presentation of economic potential of these activities, (ii) sensitization through the media (local radio, television, advertising posters); (iii) sports championships in the beneficiary localities; (iv) various school competitions and activities on the theme of wood energy resource management. The project will also identify the sites where these technologies will be most effective, including the availability of materials for their replication and maintenance. For cook stoves, the use of local materials such as banco (a local clay) is widely available and could ensure the dissemination of best practices.
In addition, during PPG phase, the project will map ongoing projects and interventions supporting the adoption of energy efficient technologies and seek partnerships with these interventions. For example, UNDP is leading an initiative on supporting clean energy access in the Sahel, which might offer potential collaboration in Niger.
Component 2: Promotion of Climate Smart Agriculture
Outcome 2.1. : Climate-smart agriculture techniques are promoted and reduce the vulnerability of smallholder farmers to climate
This component will promote climate-smart agriculture (CSA) techniques and technologies, adapted to the project intervention areas to reduce the vulnerability of smallholder farmers to climate change and enhance food security. Beneficiaries will be provided with practices and techniques for a comprehensive approach to tackle climate change. These practices will sustainably reinforce the resilience of communities against the adverse effects of climate change, improve agricultural production and beneficiary incomes, and contribute to carbon sequestration and thus GHG mitigation. Techniques and practices will include mechanical irrigation, with solar powered water pumps to reduce the impacts of water stress.
The project will build on the results of ongoing adaptation and food security projects implemented in Tahoua. to further improve the capacity to adopt CSA (barrier#2). Under the component 4 on knowledge management, the project will support the sharing of lessons learned and best practices and their introduction in the project design. In particular, the project will cooperate with the PIMELAN, which supports agricultural support services and agricultural policies, in order to disseminate lessons learned at the national level (estimated co-financing of US$15,000,000). The project will also work closely with the recently approved GCF project Hydro-agricultural development with smart agriculture practices resilient to climate change in Niger to avoid duplication and exchange knowledge. Beneficiaries will also be supported to access additional resources to expand their access to irrigation, for instance through the programme for small irrigation and food security (PISA 2) (estimated co-financing of US$5,000,000). The project will also coordinate with the recently approved GCF-funded project, the Hydro-agricultural development with smart agriculture practices resilient to climate change in Niger (AHA-AIC), supported by the BOAD (estimated co-financing of US$5,000,000). Other projects supporting the access to water will also be consulted and engaged.
While these projects provide important lessons learned, it appears from the PIF that they are only supporting the local agriculture sector, without taking into account the entire ecosystem on which they depend. This component will be strongly connected with component 1 and recognize the need for restored ecosystems. Component 2 will aim at increasing agriculture production and thereby food security, taking into account and, when possible, taking advantage of the impacts of climate change. This will only possible in an environment where surrounding ecosystems are offering protection against the increasing risks of floods and droughts, as addressed under component 1.
The component will also strengthen the capacity of local producer to access, understand and use agro-climatic and meteorological information, and contribute to producing basic local data (rainfall, humidity, temperature) to inform farming practices (barrier#4). This local data will be shared at the national level to increase the availability of local data for planning and projections.
Output 2.1.1. Climate-resilient farming techniques, including irrigation are adopted to reduce losses and food insecurity
In the context of climate change, access to water resources is increasingly scarce and less reliable, and current water practices often lack sustainability. To limit water losses and achieve sustainable water savings, the project will promote drip and California irrigation systems. These systems have an irrigation yield of 90% and 85% respectively, and will help save up to 50% of water. Under this output, boreholes with solar pumps (kits composed of solar pumps, solar panels, inverter, regulator, and connection accessories for pumping), storage basins, piezometers, drip and california irrigation network units, reservoirs for storing irrigation water, etc. will be installed. The project will support the procurement and installation of these irrigation systems, which will be the property of community groups. MSEs supported under the component 3 will be incentivized and trained to develop businesses for the maintenance of this equipment, thereby creating sustainable frameworks for the procurement of spare parts and technical knowledge for repairings at the local level. In addition, community groups will be strengthened for the basic maintenance of the equipment. The installation of the equipment will therefore be closely coordinated with the activities conducted under component 3, and contacts will be established between community groups and entrepreneurs.
In addition, the success of crop intensification in climate-smart farming practices is based on the control of varietal performance, rigorous management of irrigation water, soil fertility and ecosystems, efficient management of irrigation areas and mastery of different cultivation techniques. To facilitate the implementation of the actions promoted by the project, training will be organized for producers. Manuals/guides and training for good practices will be adopted in water management, soil restauration, water pumping energy management, crop planning will be developed and made available to producers’ groups. When extension services are not sufficient to ensure the adequate training and dissemination of these manuals, local stakeholders active in the area will be involved, this will include CSOs, NGOs or students and teachers from the Tahoua university.
Producers and community groups will receive training to design and implement a mechanism for servicing and maintaining sustainable infrastructure such as water-saving irrigation, solar water pumping equipment, etc. A technical study will be held at the PPG stage to clarify the sustainability use of underground water in the project zone. This study will also ensure FPIC from beneficiaries and surrounding communities who might be impacted by the pumps and the selection of sites for irrigation.
Output 2.1.2.: Micro-dams, dikes, bioengineering and other land stabilization methods are implemented to protect agricultural production from the increasing intensity and frequency of droughts and floods.
While the activities under component 1 are expected to provide protection against droughts and floods, considering the increasing intensity of both climate events, lowland works will provide an additional and more immediate protection to agricultural lands. In addition, restoration activities will only be fully functioning a few years after their start and communities need to be offered a more immediate solution to floods and droughts for the restoration activities to be successful and to avoid further encroachment on surrounding ecosystems.
Under this output, micro dams will be built to provide a reliable access to water for crops during drought pockets in the rainy season. In areas where flooding is increasingly recurrent, sites will be protected by dykes lined with channels and drainage equipment. This will include the preparation of sites, drilling and protecting sites from water erosion by building anti-erosion structures, flood protection infrastructures, implementation of processing koris and tree planting around project sites.
Similarly to the output 2.1.1, the maintenance and sustainability of these infrastructure will be ensured through the set-up of MSEs providing such services, with an access to the market for the procurement of spare parts or construction material and equipment. Community groups will also be entrusted the ownership of the infrastructure for their maintenance, and will be trained to provide small repairs. They will also be put in contact with the set-up MSEs for larger maintenance work.
Output 2.1.3.: Agroclimatic and meteorological information and early warnings are available and understood by farmers for climate-resilient decision-making
Access to meteorological and climatic information in real time allows better programming of agricultural activities and enhances agricultural productivity and production. It considerably reduces the risk of loss of agricultural investments due to lack of delay and / or irregular rains. Indeed, important losses are recorded in Tahoua due to the lack of adaptive practices to the changing weather events, that could be partly avoided by the timely availability of weather information. This output therefore plans to strengthen producers' access to suitable agro-meteorological information.
To eliminate information asymmetry, mobile phone services are becoming an important mean for providing farmers’ groups with weather forecasts and market data. In each locality, three to five farmers’ groups members will be identified by the beneficiary groups to receive timely weather information. They will be provided with mobile phones to disseminate the information received to the rest of the members of the group. Their capacities will be strengthened to ensure the flow of information in both directions. The dissemination of weather information through mobile phones will be reinforced by radio broadcasts in local languages. This activity will be implemented in collaboration with meteorological services, the National Center for Solar Energy (CNES), AGRHYMET and the Development Department. The project will also set up an early warning system to alert community members in case of disasters (floods, severe droughts, locust invasions, etc.), using a computer system,.
Farmers’ groups will be trained to: (i) acquire and install a direct-reading rain gauge kit, thermometer, and anemometric recorder in each beneficiary village, (ii) collect local weather information, and process and disseminate it using ICTs in a language understandable to producers, (iii) establish, in each village, a committee composed of at least 5 people (from different groups of producers) to ensure the relay of weather information to the rest of the producers, (iv) develop and validate an implementation plan for the operation of the committees, (v) establish an early warning system through a contract with the institution in charge of agroclimatic information production for treatment and analysis of data collected on site and the creation of SCAP-RU (Community System for Early Warnings and Emergency Response) and OSVs (Vulnerability Monitoring Observatories). Considering the lack of access to climate information and EWS is a key barrier deterring access to finance for beneficiaries, these interventions will also contribute towards de-risking lending to these communities from financial institutions, linking to the activities under Outcome 3.
The equipment introduced will be the property of the communities and the decentralized services of the meteorological department will be responsible for maintaining them. Equipment introduced as part of the project will be small equipment such as rain gauge kits, thermometers and anemometric recorders and are easy to maintain. In past projects, considering the seasonal need for these information, the equipment was cleaned and stored at the end of the farming season and re-introduced at the start of the following season. This ensured the good management of the equipment in the long term.
During the PPG phase, UNDP and the formulation team might also explore opportunities for the involvement of Niger into the Systemic Observations Financing Facility (SOFF) which is still under design. This would engage the Government of Niger to maintain their meteorological equipment in the long term, receiving financial support for this maintenance upon the verification of the effective maintenance (through the effective transmission of climate information to the Global Basic Observation Network (GBON) under WMO.
Component 3: Facilitating the development of the private sector in local communities
Outcome 3.1. Women- and youth-led local Micro and Small Entreprises (MSEs) and entrepreneurs provide adaptive solutions to climate change with local banks and microfinance institutions sustainable facilities
Since the 1980s, several initiatives have been developed by the State and its partners to finance the agroforestry sector through banks, financial institutions and decentralised financial systems (SFDs). However, the financial resources mobilised are not accessible to producers and other value chain stakeholders and often do not meet their investment needs (barrier #3). Also, the access modalities and conditions developed by the projects and programmes are not always harmonised, creating confusion among the beneficiary actors. In order to establish a harmonised and formal framework for financing Food and Nutrition Security and Sustainable Agricultural Development, the State, with the support of Technical and Financial Partners, has set up a secure fund for agricultural investments, which centralizes resources to finance vulnerable farming communities and individual farmers. This is the Food and Nutrition Security Fund (FISAN), which has three facilities: facility 1: support to agricultural financing, facility 2: financing of agricultural structuring investments and facility 3: financing of agricultural advice, research and capacity building.
The FISAN strategy is expected to combine classical financing systems with innovative facilities. The traditional approach refers to mechanisms for mobilising and administering public resources for the rural sector on the one hand, and private sector funding, notably through financial institutions, on the other. The innovative approach will be to set up the Fund through a public-private partnership. This fund is seen as a strategic instrument for sustainable financing of public investments for agricultural growth and food security. It provides banking facilities for private investments including: (i) subsidies to reduce the costs of agricultural inputs and materials so that they are more accessible to producers; (ii) incentive facilities for commercial banks to intervene in the financing of private investments: guarantee funds, calamity funds and interest rate subsidies; and (iii) lines of credit for direct bank financing and refinancing of SFDs. The FISAN works with banks, SFDs and other institutions in providing guarantees to deliver the activities under its first facility. Among them, the Agricultural Bank of Niger (BAGRI) signed a performance agreement with the FISAN to allocate up to US$8,000,000 (XAF 5.5 billion) for the agriculture sector in 2022. The bank, established in 2011, in spite of its mandate, has so far not been able to disburse a significant amount of credit to the agriculture sector (only 12,75% was allocated to the agriculture sector) and the rates offered are not affordable to smallholder farmers. The BAGRI is being supported in its engagement by the GCF-IFAD project “Inclusive Green Financing for Climate Resilient and Low Emission Smallholder Agriculture” , in particular in its aim to “establish a Financing Facility within BAGRI with a line of credit to support concessional loan to (…) women and youth organizations (…)”. The LDCF project will therefore collaborate with the General Direction of the FISAN, the BAGRI and the GCF-IFAD project to bridge the financing gap for farmers groups and other Economic Interest Group (EIG) by accessing credits under the BAGRI at concessional rates.
The PIMELAN also supports the financing of the FISAN to benefit smallholder farmers through MFIs present in Diffa, Tahoua and Tillabéry. The project has set up two facilities that will provide (i) US$ 6million of grant funding for agri-food funding for most vulnerable farmer groups, women and youth and other SMEs and (ii) US$22 million of loans for producer groups and SME. As such, the PIMELAN is expected to provide significant opportunities for MSEs and vulnerable groups to access credits through MFIs such as Yarda- Tarka – Maggia, Capital Finance, ACEP or Daouré, operating in the region of Tahoua.
Under this component, the project will also collaborate with other ongoing projects that support the development of the private sector, including the project to Strengthen the Resilience of Rural Communities to Food and Nutritional Insecurity in Niger, supported by IFAD.
Through this component, and the establishment of partnerships with the FISAN, the BAGRI, MFIs, IFAD, the World Bank and other stakeholders (including UNCDF, pending further consultations), the project will address the barriers related to the limited access to funding from both public sources and private sources (barriers #1 and #3). Indeed, the project will collaborate with the FISAN, BAGRI and MFIs to support traditional and innovative approaches as defined in the FISAN strategy. The project will support banks and microfinance institutions, beyond the BAGRI, to develop customized financial products targeted towards smallholder farmers engaged in CSA, as well as alternative credit-scoring and collateral mechanisms that can ease lending to this cohort. Other activities that will contribute towards de-risking lending include the integration of individual farming units into community-based MSEs across the CSA and forestry value chains, training on both CSA and financial management, and the dissemination of climate information and EWS. The expected combined impact of these interventions will de-risk and unlock both existing financing available for the agriculture sector through BAGRI and catalyze new agriculture sector funding from other commercial banks.
An Agricultural Loan Facility will also be supported by the recently approved GCF project Hydro-agricultural development with smart agriculture practices resilient to climate change in Niger and lessons learned will be regularly shared with the project to adjust the approach and support farmers to access loans under this facility.
The MSEs supported through this component will be involved in the knowledge and lessons learned sharing activities conducted under the component 4. These activities will be based on the knowledge and lessons learned collected from the components 1 and 2. Indeed, supported MSEs will be exclusively involved in CSA and ecosystem restoration for climate change adaptation and will be embedded in the sustainability and upscaling strategy of the components 1 and 2. In particular, MSEs will be incentivized and supported to offer maintenance services for the irrigation and lowland development works introduced under the component 2. In addition, during the PPG stage, opportunities will be seeked to develop a business model for the development of MSEs for the provision of climate data, including by engaging with the PS in the targeted areas, who might benefit from improved climate information.
Output 3.1.1. Agricultural groups and community cooperative funds are strengthened to increase their financial sustainability for the adoption of CSA
One of the main challenges facing local communities with regards to adopting climate resilient agriculture practices relates to the lack of adequate funding. Individual farmers are usually subsistence farmers, or receive very low incomes from their agricultural practices and are therefore not able to save enough revenues and time to invest in new practices. However, Niger has strong community groups, including farmer’s groups, which the project can build on to mobilize larger funding. These groups also offer a platform for knowledge and adaptive practices to be disseminated to new members in the long term. This outcome will strengthen these groups through two interventions:
The reinforcement of farmers’ associations business management capacity: Knowledge of entrepreneurial tools is necessary to trigger the effective functioning of agricultural cooperative societies. The project will provide, in the first 3 years, support for the development of business plans and the linking of farmers groups with their target customers. Working and awareness sessions will be organized with farmers groups, including the development and dissemination of material on business planning and entrepreneurship. The farmers groups will be supported in the development of business plans adapted to each project site, building on the lessons learned from the component 3 on CSA. In addition, a selection of business plans supporting ecosystem restoration/protection and CSA will receive micro-grants for their implementation and will be technicall supported by the project during the project lifetime, including through the sharing of lessons learned from component 1 and 2.
The incubation of existing farmers vulnerable groups’ to become CSA enterprises: Technical support will be provided to improve the management of community funds and to create an enabling environment for vulnerable agricultural groups to access finance for their members. The long-term objective is to promote the incubation of vulnerable agricultural groups in micro and small businesses for larger access to financial resources adapted to poor and vulnerable populations engaged in CSA. These groups will also benefit from the sharing of lessons learned from the activities conducted under the component 2 as well as the benefit from the reduced exposure to climate impacts from component 1. It is expected that 60% of the total beneficiaries will be women and 50% youth groups.
Output 3.1.2. : In collaboration with the FISAN, the BAGRI and MFIs, MSEs are supported to access loans for climate resilient agriculture financing
Under the FISAN strategy, and in close coordination with key stakeholders involved in supporting access to finance for vulnerable communities (ie. the PIMELAN, the IFAD-GCF project, the BAGRI, UNCDF, the BOAD-GCF project), MSEs will be technically supported for their de-risking to access credits at concessional rates. This output will target exclusively MSEs involved in CSA (including the maintenance of equipment and infrastructures introduced under the component 2), and agricultural value chains using clean energy (including cookstoves), with a strong focus on women and youth. These vulnerable groups will be supported to open a bank account with financial institutions and access credit to finance their CSA activities – including by supporting them to develop bankable proposals and request for credit. MSEs will also be trained in basic business management and accountability principles in order to increase the trust of MFIs. This de-risking will serve MSEs and IEGs to access funding from local MFIs and the BAGRI in the form of an agricultural loan. Close coordination with the PIMELAN, IFAD-GCF and BOAD-GCF projects will be conducted to ensure the access to innovative financing for targeted MSEs and IEGs in Tahoua. The beneficiaries will additionally receive training during the project lifetime as needed – including group trainings or investment-specific advice or guidance, to ensure they remain bankable for MFIs and have a long-term access to credit for their agricultural activities.
The LDCF project will also continuously work with local communities and financing institutions to identify opportunities and access innovative financial mechanisms in the project sites. It is expected that the loans accessed will finance (i) climate-resilient techniques for irrigation, (ii) solar-powered Californian or drip irrigation system for water control, (iii) water and energy management systems and practices, (iv) inputs for CSA (seeds, equipment, etc.), (v) the maintenance of the equipment and infrastructure introduced under the component 2; and (vii) the development of energy-efficient practices to reduce fuelwood consumption and support the activities under component 1 (in particular output 1.1.3).
Discussions are currently ongoing with the FISAN, the PIMELAN, the GCF-IFAD project, the BAGRI, and UNCDF to explore opportunities for partnerships and will be continued during the PPG phase, including with the recently approved BOAD-GCF project. The LDCF project will have a focus on technically de-risking the financing of women and youth for CSA (through trainings and the introduction and adoption of resilient practices), which will create a more conducive environment for the investments provided by other stakeholders, while partners will be involved in financially de-risking beneficiaries through different financing mechanisms such as subsidizing refinancing mechanisms, providing interest rate subsidies or guarantees.
Component 4: Knowledge Management and Lessons Learned
Outcome 4.1: Lessons learned on climate resilient agriculture and land restoration practices inform future projects in-country and elsewhere
Lessons learned from the project will be compiled and shared. This will be relevant for producer groups and farmers. This will be disseminated to municipalities, local agriculture administrations, the Government, civil society, regional institutions and donors working in the sector of climate change adaptation. In particular, innovative CSA and land restoration practices will be assessed and results and lessons learned collected in a format that will help advance the GGWI and other national and regional initiatives as relevant. Indeed, considering its geographical and technical alignment with the GGWI, the project will specifically ensure its results are shared and, in turn, lessons learned from the GGWI in Niger and other countries will be used and built on.
Under this outcome, the project team will also build partnerships with CCA projects, in particular the GCF project, but also projects focusing on governance and security to ensure security risks are integrated into the project adaptive management and mitigation strategy, and a more wholistic approach is adopted.
Output 4.1.1. Project results are monitored and evaluated
The project will develop a close and permanent monitoring program of the physical investments made on the sites. The program will include a monitoring of networks, structures and other interventions. This continuous monitoring will be ensured by an M&E specialist, with support from the decentralized services of the Ministry of Agriculture, with support from local focal points if needed. These services will benefit from technical and material capacity building activities to carry out this monitoring program.
In addition, a Project Monitoring and Evaluation System will be designed and implemented in accordance with the requirements of LDCF (GEF) and UNDP to monitor: (i) the rate of execution of project activities, (ii) the evolution of the financial data of the project, (ii) regular and systematic recording and reporting of progress made against the planned project objectives through the establishment of a database, and (iii) evaluation of the impact of project activities on the target group and the environment; (iv) gender-disaggregated data collection and reporting system for each project component, (v) develop participatory tools to measure project performance, (vi) conduct beneficiary surveys to measure the effects/impacts (beginning, mid-term and completion), (vii) recruit a consultant in gender mainstreaming for supporting the executive entity, (viii) conduct an annual analysis/evaluation of the technical, economic and financial performance of the project, (ix) Undertake mid-term evaluation, (x) undertake final evaluation.
During the PPG phase, and assessment on the potential to use digital tools for a more effective and transparent M&E will be conducted.
Output 4.1.2. Lessons learned from the project are compiled, capitalized, and disseminated
The project monitoring and evaluation system will make a significant contribution to the management of technology performance and traceability of operations that have made it possible to achieve results and to make decisions useful for action. In this perspective, the results (outputs, outcomes and impacts) will be capitalized and archived electronically and physically to strengthen the documentation of lessons learned.
To guarantee the project contribution to local and national adaptation to climate change and the GGWI and improve ongoing practices, the different reports and studies supported by the project will be compiled to formulate a complete lessons learned document. This will contain, among others : (i) the efficiency and weakness of technologies and techniques, process, financial management and use at regional, national and local level; (ii) the best adaptation practices recommanded for local, national and regional adaptation project ; (iii) the adopted solutions to address the weaknesses identified during the project formulation and implementation. To allow a better assimilation and implementation of the lessons learned by farmers, farmers’ groups and cooperatives, the manuals will be translated into graphic images and into the official local language of Niger.
Field missions across different sites of the GGW (in Niger and abroad) will be organized to specifically participate to the advancement of the GGWI. This knowledge will also be shared during the participation to workshops and other events on the GGWI. In addition, the Project management unit will organise exchanges with beneficiaries to appreciate the lessons learned on a practical level by producers, support exchanges with the technical services involved in the project, this will be done in 2 steps:
Development of technical and manual sheets: This will involve the production and dissemination of documents and documentaries on lessons learned and best practices tested under the project in terms of on actions to strengthen resilience to the adverse effects of climate change, increase productivity and production and mitigation of GHG emissions in the agriculture sector. To this end, the project will develop several technical sheets on the technologies and practices implemented by the project. These sheets will be designed at the end of the third year of the project and disseminated in the fourth year of the project. At least, the project will develop: (i) a fact sheet on the drip irrigation system, (ii) a fact sheet on the Californian system, (iii) a fact sheet on the system of water pumping with off grid solar energy and the maintenance of solar equipment, (iv) a fact sheet on the sustainable management of hydro-agricultural development soils and the use of agricultural inputs, (v) a fact sheet on the optimal profitability of irrigation project activities with modern techniques, (vi) fact sheets on the degraded land and ecosystems surrounding farming areas restoration with Nature-based Solutions, (vii) fact sheets on efficient cooking stoves.
Knowledge sharing and dissemination of good practices for a climate resilient agricultural sector in Niger: This activity aims to share knowledge and disseminate good practices for a climate resilient agricultural for farmers groups and cooperatives (men, women, youth), local decentralized Authorities, local agriculture and environment offices, Private Banks and Microfinance Institutions executives,Niger's international technical and financial partners ; Great Green Wall initiatives in the State members, Economic Comunitiy of West Africa States (ECOWAS) and West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU) Regional and national research centers on Climate smart agriculture, Commissioner to the 3N (les Nigériens Nourissent les Nigériens) Initiative ; Ministries in charge of agriculture, plan, and finance; Directorate in charge of Microfinance Institutions, National Debt, agriculture investment, Rural Engineering ; National Office of Environmental Assessments, Project management Unit and Executing agency.
 Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6 Level of water stress freshwater withdrawals as a proportion of available freshwater resources. Target 6.4 By 2030, substantially increase water use efficiency in all sectors and ensure sustainable withdrawal and supply of freshwater to address water scarcity and significantly reduce the number of people suffering from lack of water. Indicator 6.4.2 - Level of water stress: freshwater withdrawal as a proportion of available freshwater resources.
 For more details, please refer to the project strategy https://www.greenclimate.fund/sites/default/files/document/funding-sap01... , p22
Output 1: Degraded land is restored to protect agricultural production systems against the adverse impacts of climate change.
Output 2: Climate-smart agriculture techniques are promoted and reduce the vulnerability of smallholder farmers to climate.
Output 3: Women- and youth-led local Micro and Small Entreprises (MSEs) and entrepreneurs provide adaptive solutions to climate change with local banks and microfinance institutions sustainable facilities.
Output 4: Lessons learned on climate resilient agriculture and land restoration practices inform future projects in-country and elsewhere.
Barrier#1: Limited technical and financial support from the Government to address climate-induced land degradation: Agricultural fields are increasingly exposed to flooding, erosion and silting due to climate change and adverse practices such as deforestation. However, with limited public budget, only one agriculture advisor per 1,000 producer household is in place, and insufficient investment in infrastructure and restoration are undertaken. In addition, Niger's fiscal balance has been negatively impacted by the impacts of COVID-19 and sovereign debt became even more difficult to assume. The economic downturn, fiscal pressures, and tightening of financial conditions are giving rise to large financing gaps in Niger’s public finances and balance of payments. According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the country has a limited capacity to borrow additional loan financing, considering the overall fiscal balance including grants which is projected at -5% in 2020. In particular, the budget allocated to agriculture by the government remains well below the financing needs to adapt the agriculture sector to the adverse effects of climate change.
In addition, in spite of the food crisis the Sahel region is facing, the war in Ukraine has led to a large reduction in ODA following the reallocation of resources from important donor countries such as Denmark or Norway. Indeed, Niger does not have the resources in the national budget to address the climate crisis in the Agriculture sector and is highly dependant on international support. This is reflected in the NDC, with the distinction between unconditional adaptation and conditional adaptation, budgeted at US$2.4 billion for 2021-2040 and US$4.343 billion respectively – indicating that 64% of the needs for adaptation financing are expected to be met by external financing ;
Barrier#2: Low knowledge and technical and technological capacity to adopt climate-smart agriculture and ecosystem restoration practices. Even though some traditional practices in terms of ecosystem restoration and protection exist and have been reintroduced, there is a need to adjust these practices to the projected rapid impacts of climate change and to introduce CSA practices. Due to this lack of experience and adequate sensitization efforts, producers are reluctant to adopt new practices as such shifts are perceived risky. This is particularly true in the case of ecosystem restoration practices, which often do not yield immediately perceivable benefits due to the period needed for the ecosystems regenerate.
In addition, successful strategies (including developed by farmers) are not consolidated and disseminated to generate the larger replication of the practices within and outside the community. Due to the limited availability of deconcentrated state agents, the lack of communication networks and the poor management of lessons learned at the local level (within local authorities, CSOs, NGOs or community groups) and at the national level (within research institutions and universities), successful practices are not replicated beyond the areas of intervention. This also translates into a lack of data and knowledge at the national level on local agricultural production and the impacts of climate change, thereby adversely affecting the informed planning for adaptation at the national level – either using Government’s resources or external donors’ funding.
Even though progress was achieved under Great Green Wall Initiative (GGWI), including in Niger and Tahoua, and the growing interest from Governments, donors and other stakeholders, key pressing areas of intervention still require support to implement the three strategic axis of the GGW in Niger: (i) promoting the good governance of natural resources and the Local Development with the involvement of local populations and for their benefit, (ii) the improvement of food security through the valuation and sustainable management of agrosylvopastoral production systems and (iii) knowledge management. The GGWI was envisioned as a large scale programme that would ensure the generation, compilation and sharing of knowledge and lessons learned, but climate risk management support is still urgently needed.
Finally, CSA and ecosystem restoration practices are not introduced as complementary measures and their self-reinforcing adaptive benefits are not always understood by communities and local stakeholders. The relationship between the pressure on surrounding ecosystems and the increased vulnerability to climate change is not clearly understood due to the delayed and indirect nature of the benefits of restored and protected ecosystems as opposed to the direct revenues and livelihood issued from new agricultural land;
Barrier#3: Vulnerable populations don’t have access to low-cost, long-term financing for innovative climate-resilient techniques including solar water pumping systems, water-efficient irrigation networks and other CSA practices. For the communities recognizing the impacts of climate change and wishing to invest in adaptive practices, they face barriers to access financing. Local communities are often perceived by traditional financing institutions (including Micro-Finance Institutions – MFIs) as too risky and notcreditworthy and in turn, local communities are not able to afford the high interest rates offered by these institutions.
Despite the availability of an estimated US$2.1 billion of total assets within the financial sector in Niger, constituting an important source of finance to catalyze in order to meet the investment gap for climate resilient agriculture, farmers are not able to access affordable financing for innovative climate resilient technologies. This can be explained by: i) the lack of capacity of Banks and Microfinance Institutions (MFIs) in green lending, ii) the high interest rates charged by banks and MFIs on lending products for climate resilient agriculture, iii) the weak and/or inexistent regulatory frameworks on agriculture resilience and renewable energy technologies financing. Niger's financial system does not provide adequate and sufficient financing that responds effectively to the needs of the national agricultural sector.
The financing available does not allow access to medium and long-term credit to finance equipment or structured finance to meet the sector's supply or value chain needs. While agriculture contributes more than 35% of GDP and employs almost 85% of Niger's working population, the proportion of the banking sector lending to agriculture is extremely limited (less than 1% of total lending). The factors that hinder the development of appropriate and accessible on-farm financial services are: (i) high credit interest rates (12% to 20%) with short-term maturities of under a year; (ii) insufficient supply of credit to meet demand ; (iii) non-financing of all agricultural sectors/activities due to the high risk perception and difficulties in debt collection, (vi) lack of guarantee mechanisms, and (vi) the lack of capacity of Banks and Microfinance Institutions (MFIs) on financing small holder farmers, agriculture groups and cooperatives for climate resilient agriculture. Thus, it is necessary to create incentives for the financial sector to lower interest rates and make loans more accessible (with longer tenors) for agriculture groups and cooperatives and improve the profitability of their farms while increasing the resilience to climate change.
Even the Niger agricultural Bank’s (BAGRI) has not been able to sufficiently support the agriculture sector. As of 31 January 2020, total outstanding loans, all terms included, amounted to 81 million USD, of which 13 million USD were for agriculture (17% of the total portfolio), while the estimated costs of the Agricultural Value Chain Development of the Strategic Programme for the period 2016-2020 is estimated at more than 268 million USD. From 2021 to 2025, the estimated annual financial requirements for priority resilience, water management and sustainable land management programmes are estimated at $520 million. Given the aggravation of food insecurity due to climate change, the Government of Niger is implementing actions to migrate from rain-fed agriculture to CSA. While resources to support local communities adopt these practices are limited, there is a need to create an enabling environment for vulnerable subsistence farmers to develop into local MSEs, access microfinance, and replicate and scale-up the current investments. Currently, vulnerable farmers are not able to borrow due to the absence of sufficient guarantees and the lack of solvent organization of agricultural groups. There is therefore a gap to strengthen existing organizations and support the access to affordable credit.
Barrier#4: Unavailable, obsolete or inaccessible climate information. Currently, reliable climate information is not available or widely disseminated for local communities. The meteorological network is scattered through the country and does not provide data specific to the local level, preventing the adoption of adequate adaptive practices. When available, the shared information provides approximately downscaled warnings and forecasts that do not provide the needed accuracy to adapt the agriculture practices in a timely manner. In addition, forecasts and early warnings are not always disseminated in a way that is understandable by local communities – for instance, most of the information is only available in French and not translated in local languages.
Finally, the communication strategies often exclude most remote and isolated communities, who may not have access to phones or radios and are less accessible for scarce deconcentrated state services. There is a lack of locally-collected data, timely shared with meteorological institutions to issue agricultural advice, projections and early warnings. This communication channel also fails to share and consolidate lessons learned from CSA and other traditional and modern agricultural practices for a better management of knowledge at the national and regional level.
 According to the World Bank, to better cope with the Covid-19 crisis, Niger should primarily direct and strengthen its actions in favor of sensitive sectors such as food security. The cost of the COVID 19 Response Plan, estimated by the Government and its partners in May 2020, is $1.5 billion, or 18.4% of GDP.
 Niger’s NDC Chapter 5.7 Accent on Climate-Smart Agriculture. September, 26th, 2015
Enhancing Climate Resilience in Thailand through Effective Water Management and Sustainable Agriculture
While Thailand has made remarkable progress in social and economic development over the last four decades, rising temperatures and more frequent and extreme droughts and floods driven by climate change pose an increasing threat to the country’s economy. Water management has emerged as a leading concern.
This project will help build the resilience of farmers in the Yom and Nan river basins (Sukhothai, Phitsanulok and Uttaradit provinces) through improved climate information and forecasts, the introduction of more climate-resilient agricultural practices, and expanded access to markets and finance.
At the same time, it will work with subnational and national agencies to improve risk-informed planning and decision-making, promote cross-sectoral coordination, and upgrade critical infrastructure such as irrigation canals and floodgates, taking advantage of ecosystem-based adaptation approaches.
Thailand’s extreme vulnerability to climate change is shaped by an extensive coastline, a large rural population highly dependent on agriculture, and extensive populous urban areas located on flood prone plains.
Severe rain, flood and drought events are expected to increase in the near and longer-term future. The country’s agricultural sector will be particularly impacted by changing patterns of precipitation, with implications for agricultural livelihoods and local and national economies. Between 2040 and 2049, the projected negative impacts on agriculture are estimated to induce losses of between $24 billion and $94 billion.
In 2011, 66 out of the country’s 77 provinces were affected by flooding, with over 20,000 square kilometres of agricultural land damaged, and nearly 900 lives lost. The following year, Thailand suffered $46.5 billion in damages and loss, and required an estimated $14 billion in loans for rehabilitation and reconstruction as a result.
The recent drought in 2015-2016 is estimated to have resulted in losses of $3.4 billion.
Poor households will suffer disproportionately from the impacts of climate change. Poverty in Thailand has a predominately rural profile, which fluctuates according to vulnerabilities in the agricultural sector, such as faltering economic growth, falling agricultural prices, and droughts.
Proportionally, the Central and Northern Regions of Thailand have the highest levels of poverty. Sukhothai, Phitsanulok, and Uttaradit provinces – those covered by the project – have higher poverty levels compared with other parts of the country.
Climate-informed water management and climate-resilient water infrastructure are critical to Thailand’s preparedness and response to climate change. Thailand’s National Adaptation Plan 2018, highlighted flood control and drought management as key priorities, with a focus on Chao Phraya River Basin.
Given the cost of upgrading existing water infrastructure across the country, the Royal Thai Government is seeking to complement its grey infrastructure with ecosystems-based adaptation measures. As agriculture households are the most vulnerable to changing climatic conditions, an integrated solution which brings together water management and agriculture is key.
This project therefore focuses on adapting water management and agricultural livelihoods in the Yom and Nan river basins to climate change induced extreme weather events (droughts and floods), through interventions across three outputs:
· Output 1: Enhancing climate and risk informed planning in the water and agricultural sectors through improved climate information and cross sectoral coordination
· Output 2: Improving water management through strengthened infrastructure complemented by EbA measures, for greater resilience to climate change impacts
· Output 3: Reducing volatility of agriculture livelihoods in drought and flood prone areas through strengthened extension support and local planning, investment in on-farm adaptation measures and greater access to finance and markets
Better integration of ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA) measures will have environmental benefits, while capacity-building interventions will support cost-efficient and effective water and agriculture planning.
The project design – which includes artificial intelligence to support climate-informed planning, precision agriculture for efficient water use and applies the internet of things (IoT) concept for sharing and applying data – has been guided by Thailand 4.0, which aims to shift Thailand’s agriculture sector towards an innovation-driven and interconnected sector.
At the same time, the project also supports low-tech interventions to help farmers respond to changing rainfall patterns. These include on-farm ecosystem-based adaptation measures (for example, farm ponds), small-scale equipment to support water saving farming practices (for example, system for rice intensification) and community nurseries.
Training will be provided to ensure that extension services can support farmers with adaptation measures, and the project will provide support to market access for products resulting from climate resilient practices.
The project builds on existing initiatives, including work by the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives to enhance Thailand’s agriculture sector adaptation planning (supported by UNDP and FAO through a BMU funded project) and work by the Ministry to implement the Agricultural Strategic Plan on Climate Change 2017-2021 whereby the Royal Irrigation Department takes the lead for the Strategy 2 (Adaptation Actions).
The Office of National Water Resources – which functions as the regulating agency in proposing policies, formulating master plan on water resources management, responsible for management and supervision as well as integration on the implementation plan of water related-agencies in accordance with the Water Resource Management Act (2018) – has developed the 20-year Master Plan on Water Management (2018-2037), aimed at solving Thailand’s chronic drought, flood and wastewater problems. The Master Plan also stresses the importance of the need to bring in new ideas and technologies to address water related challenges which are exacerbated by climate change.
Output 1: Enhance climate and risk informed planning in the water and agricultural sectors through improved climate information and cross sectoral coordination
Activity 1.1 Strengthen capacity to generate tailored climate information to inform water management and agriculture planning
Activity 1.2. Facilitate inter-ministerial coordination for climate-informed and integrated planning
Activity 1.3. Expand access to climate information for application at the household level
Output 2: Improve water management through strengthened infrastructure complemented by EbA measures, for greater resilience to climate change impacts
Activity 2.1. Climate-informed engineering designs for the 13 schemes of the Yom-Nan river basin, and upgrade of 2 water infrastructure
Activity 2.2. Complementing of grey infrastructure with EbA measures and integration of EbA approaches into water management policy and planning
Output 3: Reduce volatility of agriculture livelihoods in drought and flood prone areas through strengthened extension support and local planning, investment in on-farm adaptation measures and greater access to finance and markets
Activity 3.1. Application of climate information in household agriculture planning and strengthening related support through extension services
Activity 3.2. Implementation of on-farm climate resilient measures to improve drought and flood resilience and improved access to finance for sustainable agriculture
Activity 3.3. Capacity building for farmers to support market access for climate resilient agriculture products
The primary responsibility for day-today project monitoring and implementation rests with the Project Manager. UNDP’s Country Office will support the Project Manager as needed, including through annual supervision missions.
Key reports include annual performance reports (APR) for each year of project implementation; an independent mid-term review (MTR); and an independent terminal evaluation (TE) no later than three months prior to operational closure of the project.
The final project APR along with the terminal evaluation report and corresponding management response will serve as the final project report package and will be made available to the public on UNDP’s Evaluation Resource Centre.
The UNDP Country Office will retain all M&E records for this project for up to seven years after project financial closure in order to support ex-post evaluations.
Output 1: Enhance climate and risk informed planning in the water and agricultural sectors through improved climate information and cross sectoral coordination
Activity 1.1 Strengthen capacity to generate tailored climate information to inform water management and agriculture planning
Activity 1.2. Facilitate inter-ministerial coordination for climate-informed and integrated planning
Activity 1.3. Expand access to climate information for application at the household level
Output 2: Improve water management through strengthened infrastructure complemented by EbA measures, for greater resilience to climate change impacts
Activity 2.1. Climate-informed engineering designs for the 13 schemes of the Yom-Nan river basin, and upgrade of 2 water infrastructure
Activity 2.2. Complementing of grey infrastructure with EbA measures and integration of EbA approaches into water management policy and planning
Output 3: Reduce volatility of agriculture livelihoods in drought and flood prone areas through strengthened extension support and local planning, investment in on-farm adaptation measures and greater access to finance and markets
Activity 3.1. Application of climate information in household agriculture planning and strengthening related support through extension services
Activity 3.2. Implementation of on-farm climate resilient measures to improve drought and flood resilience and improved access to finance for sustainable agriculture
Activity 3.3. Capacity building for farmers to support market access for climate resilient agriculture products
The main project objective is reducing the vulnerability of communities and productive ecosystems in the Municipality of San Francisco Menendez to drought risk, soil erosion, and flash floods due to climate change and climate variability. The project will integrate forest landscape restoration as a climate change adaptation strategy targeted towards increasing forest cover, improving the hydrological cycle, increasing the amount of available water, and regulating surface and groundwater flows, while maintaining and improving water supply and quality. The project landscape approach will ensure that land degradation is reduced (or reversed) and that productivity is maintained and made resilient to climate change impact, thus contributing to better food security and community resilience. By ensuring and enabling institutional and governance environment, the project will generate coordinated and informed actors with the capacity to address appropriate adaptation measures in the medium and long term thus resulting in a genuine local resilience to climate change.
The project will meet its objective by restoring 3,865Ha of forest landscape within San Francisco Menendez, through a landscape-based ecosystem intervention that will focus on the restoration of critical landscapes and enhance its capacity to manage droughts, soil erosion and flash floods; promoting and implementing climate resilient and economically viable productive alternatives in the region that address the economic vulnerability being faced in the region as traditional agricultural systems have become less productive due to climate change; generating climate and hydrological information products in the region to identify and monitor the impact of climate change in the landscape and also the effectiveness of ecosystem based interventions in their management to improve local and national responses; and enhancing local capacity to take concerted action in addressing climate change impact, prioritizing adaptation interventions and mobilizing the financing necessary for their implementation.
- El Salvador has been identified by the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) as one of the countries with the highest sensitivity to climate change. According to the Fifth Assessment Report of the IPCC, the country is characterized by a high exposure to geoclimatic threats, resulting from its location and topography, exacerbating climate change induced risk and vulnerability of human settlements and ecosystems. The Global Climate Risk Index for the period between 1997 to 2016, covering both human and economic impacts, ranks El Salvador 16th in the world, emphasizing the country’s high vulnerability to extreme climate events. There is ample evidence of climate change and variability affecting all sectors of society and economy, at different spatial and temporal scales, from intra-seasonal to long-term variability as a result of large-scale cyclical phenomena. A study from The Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) found that between 1980 to 2008, an average of 1.5 natural disasters per year resulted in nearly 7,000 human casualties, affecting 2.9 million people, and costing US $470 million to the central government (amount that is equivalent to 4.2% of the Gross Domestic Product). The country of El Salvador spends an equivalent to 1.1% of its total GDP with dealing with climate change related impacts and infrastructure every year on average.
- El Salvador is the most densely populated country in Central America (342 people per km²) with a population of approximately 6.46 million inhabitants, of which 52.9% are women. The country’s territory totals 21,040 km², with a rugged topography (50% of total land mass has slopes of over 15%), highly erodible soils and the lowest per capita availability of freshwater in Central America5. According to the measurement of compound poverty, 35.2% of the total Salvadoran households are poor, equivalent to 606,000 homes to approximately 2.6 million people. Similarly, the multidimensional poverty rate in rural areas is 58.5%, and 22.5% in urban areas. Thirty-eight percent of the country’s population resides in rural or non-urban areas, of which 20% are women. In all the departments, other than one, over 50% of rural households are multidimensionally poor and as such are more vulnerable to the effects of climate change (Figure 1). Homes with this condition have the following deprivations: 37% food insecurity; 49% lack of access to drinking water; 83.7% no access to public health.
- Sixty percent of the national territory is devoted to agriculture, which is the main source of livelihood for the rural population in the country. About 36% of the total country territory is arable land, with corn as the main subsistence crop, followed by rice, beans, oilseeds, and sorghum, and with the cultivation of coffee and sugar cane as major cash crops The effects of climate change, as observed over recent years, have directly affected the productivity across the whole spectrum of the agricultural sector, with significant impacts on smallholder farming. According to the last agricultural census, there are more than 325,000 producers of basic grains who work in land parcels of sizes ranging between 0.7-3 hectares. Not surprisingly, 52.4% of the farmers organize their agricultural activity in parcels averaging 0.7 hectares, with an average corn production of 1.427 kg/ha. This production may satisfy the immediate needs of a family household (requiring only 1,300 kg of corn per year), but is significantly lower than the national average production (2,575 kg/ha). Impact from extreme weather such as the tropical storm Mitch (1998) caused damages and total loss of US $388.1 million, with US $158.3 million (40.8% of the total) impacting the agricultural sector. The 2001, drought reported damages and loss for US $31.4 million and 81% for the farming industry. Hurricane Stan (2005) caused US $355.6 million in damages and loss, US $48.7 million and 13.7% of the total for the agricultural sector. The Tropical Depression Twelve-E (DT 12-E) in 2011 carried a price tag of US $306 million in damages and losses in the agricultural sector. Between 2014 and 2015, losses in agriculture, as a result of severe drought, costed the country more than US $140 million, with greater impact felt on subsistence crops (corn and beans), as well as in the dairy industry which lost more than 10% of its production. The sustained dry spell followed by high temperatures, has also caused severe damage to the health of human populations, to the broader agricultural sector, and the natural environment. Furthermore, the reduction or deficiency in rainfall over the period has also affected the availability and quality of superficial and underground water resources.
Extreme weather hazards and climate change in El Salvador
- El Salvador is currently impacted by the effects of climate variability and change, with highly variable rainfall patterns, both spatial and temporal, which is leading to an increase in the number of extreme climatic events (i.e. tropical cyclones, floods and droughts). Over time, El Salvador has passed from experiencing one event per decade in the sixties and seventies, two in the eighties, four in the nineties, to eight extreme events in the last decade. This shows a shift from previous decades, when extreme events hitting the country would originate mostly from the Atlantic Ocean, and had its first wave of impacts mitigated by the land mass of neighbouring countries. This is no longer the case, since the frequency and intensity of tropical cyclones originating from both the Atlantic and the Pacific Oceans has increased over the past two decades.
- Studies from the National Service of Territorial Studies (Servicio Nacional de Estudios Territoriales, SNET) reveal that at least 10% of the country is prone to floods, 20% percent is exposed to landslides, 50% is affected by drought. The poorest segments of the population are particularly hit by natural disasters, as they are more likely to live in hazardous parts of the territory, such as flood plains, river banks, steep slopes, and fragile buildings in densely populated zones.
- In 2014, the average accumulated rain for July ended as the lowest in the last 44 years on record, and in 2015 the average accumulated rain during the rainy season was the lowest ever recorded, reaching only 63% of what should be expected given normal historic climate conditions (Figure 4). Extended drought periods in the country, have traditionally been followed by high temperatures, hindering progress and functioning of important sectors of the economy, including agriculture, health, water resources, and energy. According to the Food & Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), approximations from Central America’s main the prima harvest for 2015 showed a decline of 60% in the total maize harvest, and 80% in the total beans harvest due to drier than normal weather conditions.
- Consecutive dry years, in which the dry spells last for extended periods of time, have become more frequent due to climate change. This has had wide spread effect across different sectors, consequently increasing risk and vulnerability of populations in El Salvador. Most importantly, this causes reduction on the availability of food (also affecting its access and use), due to impacts on income and basic goods availability in certain regions of the country, with serious social and economic impacts in the long-term. Furthermore, extended drought periods in the region has made landscapes more susceptible to soil erosion, floods and landslides, especially in the advent of localized rainfall in excess. Droughts in El Salvador are also known for causing fluctuations in food prices, plant pests epidemic, animal disease propagation, financial and political instability.
National Climate Scenarios
- The climate change scenarios indicate that in the coming years, El Salvador will experience more intense, and more frequent, extreme events. According to the projected scenarios, the country will consistently face reductions in precipitation and constant increases in temperature (Figure 5). The National Climate Scenarios produced by the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (MARN) show that over the course of this century, the average temperatures (maximum and minimum averages) will increase considerably, with the magnitude of the change being most marked for the period 2071-2100.
- Average and minimum temperature will shift considerably between the periods 2021-2050 and 2071-2100 under all climatic scenarios. This represent changes between 1 °C and 3 °C and up to 4.5 °C towards the end of the century. These projected changes in temperature for El Salvador, are most in line with the changes projected by the IPCC. Temperature increases of such magnitude, will have direct effect on the temperature of the Pacific coast. When breaking and zooming into the time series of projections, the data shows that, in the near future (between 2021-2030 and 2031-2041), all scenarios point out to shifts between 0.7 °C and 1.5 °C, which is higher than what its observed today. The last decade in the period under consideration, presents the greatest changes in temperature with values between 1.5 °C and 2 °C in the country. These projections reveal that, in the future, 90% of the national territory will be subject to average temperature values above 27 °C.
- All scenarios point to a decrease in precipitation between 10% to 20%, across the country between 2021-2050, with some regions being expected to see a reduction above 20% (under a high emissions scenario). This would represent a reduction of no less than 200 mm per year in precipitation. Comparably, towards 2041-2050 the magnitude of rainfall reduction will remain on the mark between 10% to 20%, similar to the previous period. It is worth noting that projected changes between 2031-2040 can be attributed to already ongoing climate change and variability processes in El Salvador, and that these changes are within the scope of the IPCC projections for the region.
- The projected scenarios for the period between 2071-2100, show even more drastic changes in precipitation patterns in the country, with values ranging between 20 to 26% under the high emissions pathway. When looking at each decade in detail, for example, between 2071-2080 the changes represent a decrease of 15-25% in rainfall, under a low emissions scenario, followed by 20-25% reduction in rainfall under a high emissions scenario. By the same token, the decade of 2081-2090 will experience reductions between 20% to 30%, with even higher depletion of rainfall under the high emissions scenario. During the last decade of the 21st century between 2091-2100, the projected scenarios reveal a decrease in rainfall ranging between 20% -35% (low emissions scenario) when compared to current observed values. At the century approaches end, the scenarios reveal reduction in precipitation that are considerably more pronounced, intense and drastic if compared to the period between 2021-2050. This represents a reduction of 300 mm a year in precipitation in the country.
- These scenarios represent a complete range of alternative futures for climate in El Salvador. Taking into account the cascading effects that may accompany the climate change scenarios, the country’s economy, society and nature, finds itself having to deal with greater risk and effective occurrence of natural disasters. Not surprisingly, as a result of current climate variability and change, in the form of higher temperatures, reduced rainfall, erratic local, regional and global climate controls, the country is already and will continue to need to manage increased social, economic and environmental pressures across vastly degraded landscapes.
The South Ahuachapán landscape
- The South-Ahuachapán area, located in the department of Ahuachapán, includes the municipalities of San Francisco Menendez, Jujutla, Guaymango and San Pedro Puxtla (Figure 9), covering an area of 591.73 Km2, with a population of 98,016 people from which 51% are women, and with the majority of the population (77%) residing in rural areas.
- The MARN estimates the South-Ahuachapán as an area of high vulnerability to climate change. Considering its environmental and social characteristics at the landscape level, this part of the country finds itself highly susceptible to the destructive effects of climate variability together with lacking of necessary resources to adequately prepare, respond and recover from natural disasters. This region, contains a significant amount of the population exposed to frequent meteorological drought, while at the same time it is one of El Salvador’s main regions for the production of staple food items (basic grains), as well as other cash crops (sugarcane, coffee).
- According to the climate change scenarios produced by the MARN, climate variability and change in the region will become more and more evident. This will be reflected through significant increases in average temperatures, erratic rainfall patterns, and increased frequency and intensity of extreme weather events.
- Tree cover accounts for 68% of its total territorial area, distributed as 33% Forest, 29% Shaded coffee and 6% shrubs. Agricultural land accounts for 26% of total area, and it is used for the production of staple grains (maize and beans). The Landscape features strategic natural assets for the country, such as El Imposible National Park, the Apaneca-Ilamatepec Biosphere Reserve, and the RAMSAR site Barra de Santiago comprising an extraordinary biological diversity of ecosystems, species and genes, and their conservation deserve special attention. The primary ecological zones are the humid subtropical forest to the south, very moist subtropical forest, and humid subtropical forest.
- The area has a complex hydrographic network. Of the 11 hydrographic basins that drain the territory, four of the most important: the rivers La Paz, Banderas, Lempa and Grande in Sonsonate are part of this area. There are 32 rivers in the Barra de Santiago Basin - and the Sub-basins of Cara Sucia and Culiapa. Among the main rivers of the Cara Sucia Sub-basin are El Sacramento, Huiscoyol, El Corozo, Cara Sucia, Mistepe, the Izcanal, Maishtapula, and the Aguachapio rivers. Between the main rivers of the Cuilapa Sub-basin are the Guayapa, Cuilapa, El Naranjo, El Rosario, Cubis, San Antonio, Tihuicha and El Negro rivers. However, a Hydro Analysis of this area carried out in 2007, showed that domestic demand represented 7.41% of total demand, against an irrigation demand of 92.59%, with signs of over-exploitation of the resource in the lower parts of the Cara Sucia Sub-watershed.
- Since 1974, the Paz River has abandoned old drainages of the El Aguacate, La Danta and Río Seco channels, causing a process of desiccation and transformation of the wetlands and marshes, with an alteration of the salinity gradients, the reduction of the freshwater flows and the closure of the mangrove swamps of Garita Palmera. This leads to a high susceptibility to flooding in the southern part of the Department. The situation will be further aggravated by the climate change impacts projected to take place in what is already degraded land. Ineffective agricultural and livestock practices have led to high levels of contamination by agrochemicals, which, together with erosion, lead to a deterioration of mangroves with sedimentation and silting of channels, with loss of mangrove hydrodynamic regulation. This situation, threatens and affects artisanal and industrial fishing and local livelihoods. The lack of opportunities leads to migration and weakening of the social fabric in an already vulnerable part of the country.
- In this region, the mangroves in the lower basin of the river belong to the mangrove ecoregion of the Pacific dry coast (Olson et al., 2001), which extend in patches along the coastal zone of Guatemala and El Salvador. The mangroves and marshes dominate the coasts of estuaries in the coastal plain. The coastal wetlands of Garita Palmera and El Botoncillo are possibly the least known and certainly the most degraded on the coast of El Salvador (MARN - AECI, 2003), and the population that inhabits these ecosystems have livelihoods intimately related to their services. The current conditions of the mangroves in the lower basin of the river are a consequence of the high rate of deforestation and the change in land use throughout the basin, as well as alterations in its hydrological regime, such as decrease of annual flow, flow seasonal shifts, and significant decrease in water budget of River Paz, causing a reduction in the productivity of ecosystems and in their capacity to provide services and benefits to local communities (further contributing to flooding, increased runoff and soil loss).
- This region is important also for aquifer recharge, specifically for the recharge of the aquifer ESA-01, localized in alluvial materials in south Ahuachapán, in the municipalities of San Francisco Menendez, Jujutla and Acajutla.
- During the last eight years, this landscape has suffered the adverse impacts of extreme hydro-meteorological events, in some years it experienced Tropical Depressions and Hurricanes, and in other years it suffered meteorological drought with significant damages to infrastructure, agriculture and crops, functioning of ecosystems, and livelihoods. The loss of coverage and inadequate agricultural practices on slopes, have caused a decrease in water regulation capacities with increased runoff, which in turn led to a severe increase in soil erosion rates in the high and middle parts of the basins, an increased risk of landslides and floods; and a decrease in infiltration capacities and aquifer recharge with a decrease in the water supply for different uses. All this has been reflected in large damages to infrastructure and crop loss.
- The pressure exerted on the forest remnants of the highlands, riparian forests, secondary forests, agroforestry systems and mangroves has also increased the region’s vulnerability to climate change. The reduction of habitat, the loss of ecological connectivity and of critical ecosystem services (i.e. water provision, climate regulation) have caused a chain of processes and negative impacts that increase the vulnerability of this area in the face of more frequent events of heavy rainfall, and prolonged periods of drought. Thus, the loss of natural vegetation cover and the poor land use practices in agriculture, are leading to a continuous decrease in surface and ground water availability, excessive runoff, and a decrease in other water regulation ecosystem services, leading to a significant increase in soil erosion rates. A recent assessment of damages to the agricultural sector in Ahuachapán, pointed out that, due to an extended drought period, the average numbers observed for the harvest of corn and beans (June/July 2015) had a reduction of 94%.
- Degrading of natural ecosystems, with wide spread effects at the landscape level (including depletion of riparian forests and grasslands) threatens the provision of a wide range of ecosystem services to local communities in the South Ahuachapán. Long and short-term effects of degradation of these ecosystems include:
- increased soil erosion as a result of reduced vegetation cover;
- reduced infiltration of water in degraded watersheds and catchment areas, thereby resulting in reduced recharge of groundwater and an increased incidence of flooding;
- Interventions in the are thus need to focus on helping the landscape to adapt and build resilience to the impacts of climate change, through the protection of the ecosystems and the rehabilitation and conservation of the mosaic of interdependent land uses thus enhancing the landscape’s capacity to manage extreme hydro-meteorological events as well as increased projected temperatures and erratic rainfall patterns. The goods and services generated by healthy or under restoration landscapes, have the potential to mitigate these threats by providing multiple benefits to local communities in the region of South-Ahuachapán, such as the provision of natural resources (food and water) and regulatory functions, including flood mitigation, water filtration and waste decomposition.
Landscape approach to build resilience and adapt to climate change
- In 2012, El Salvador developed the National Environmental Policy to help regulate, manage, protect the country’s natural resources, and reverse environmental degradation, while reducing the country’s vulnerability to climate change, which feeds directly into the country’s plans on long-term economic growth and social progress outcomes. A key instrument of the National Environmental Policy is the National Program for the Restoration of Ecosystems and Landscapes (PREP), which is organized in three strategic areas: 1) Restoration, reforestation and inclusive conservation of critical ecosystems such as gallery forests, water recharge areas, slopes, mangroves and other forest ecosystems; 2) The restoration of degraded soils, through the forestation of agricultural systems, the adoption of resilient agroforestry systems and the development of sustainable and climate-resilient and biodiversity-friendly agriculture; 3) Synergistic development of physical infrastructure and natural infrastructure. Forest landscape restoration is a key part of the country’s Nationally Determined Contribution, and the main strategy to contribute to climate change adaptation, by increasing productivity of landscapes, enhancing the resilience of forest ecosystems, landscapes, agroecosystems, watersheds, and forest‐dependent communities.
- The PREP comprises immediate and strategic activities, such as the conservation of forest remnants; the restoration of forest ecosystems and agroecosystems, recovering tree coverage in critical sites, working to rehabilitate the landscape; and the maintenance and increase of tree cover in critical areas, particularly in high altitude agroecosystems, and at the watershed level (to control water supply and flow, reducing runoff, landslides and floods). The application of techniques to reduce the speed of the water flow and to increase the capacity of the water retention in the upper sections of the basins and the high zones of the mountain ranges and the protection of the plant cover, have the potential to reduce erosion and the transport of sediment as well as floods. Consequently, it enables to reduce risks associated to extreme hydro-meteorological events. Furthermore, it is expected that the reforestation of the agricultural areas will improve the soil with an increase in organic matter and moisture retention, and therefore, increasing the resistance during water shortage and drought.
Identification of priority sites for EBA through restoration in South Ahuachapán
- Information from the PREP was used o update National Land Use Map, allowing for the identification of key the restoration sites of the country based on the following six criteria: soil conservation and food production; biodiversity and wildlife conservation; protection of ground water and adaptation to drought; adaptation to extreme events and protection against floods and storms; firewood supply and climate regulation.
- A particular focus was provided to key agroecosystems sites (these account for 60% of the national territory) with the potential land use/cover transitions for restoration also being identified taking into account the different current uses of the soil to allow the recovery of prized ecosystems, through the restoration of their relevant environmental goods and services for adaptation. The potential areas for each transition type comprise a total of 1,001,405 hectares comprising eleven proposed transitions pointing to the high potential for restoration areas in South Ahuachapán.
- The analysis by MARN has allowed the project to identify the municipality of San Francisco Menendez located in the South Landscape of Ahuachapán, as the target intervention area for restoration investments. The municipality has a territory of 226.13 km2 and a total population of 42,062 of which 30,211 reside in rural areas. The identification of the Municipality of San Francisco Menendez as the area of intervention, was based on an exhaustive analysis of available time series of satellite remote sensing data, together with data and information collected by MARN in-situ.
- To further characterize the imbalances observed in the region, coming as consequence of intense rainfall and longer dry periods, the prioritization exercise used data from the Monthly Climate and Climatic Water Balance for Global Terrestrial Surfaces Dataset (TerraClimate) to better understand the runoff patterns in San Francisco Menendez. The analysis revealed an upward trend in surface runoff in San Francisco Menendez, starting in 2006 and progressing steadily, affecting negatively agricultural activities and exacerbating the already damaging effects of extended periods of drought, scarce and localized rainfall patterns in the intervention area. The data and analysis revealed that the lower Rio Paz presents a remarkably consistent pattern of low precipitation and high temperatures over time. Such characteristics have been followed by an increase in the number of extreme whether events (such as heavy rainfall and droughts), leading to below average soil moisture, increased surface runoff, and soil loss. This has been pointed out by an increasing number of recent reports by MARN and international agencies such as USAID, FAO, GIZ, which have identified the Municipality of San Francisco Menendez (entirely located in the Central America Dry Corridor) as extremely susceptible to the Effects of CC. The impacts pointed out by MARN and international organizations working in the area, have been immediately felt in the form of changes in water flow patterns (in the Lower Rio Paz), higher than normal temperatures, erratic rainfall, and low fresh water input into the ocean. This has created an imbalance that will only be exacerbated by CC, affecting agriculture, the natural environment, as well as local livelihoods in the project intervention areas.
- In San Francisco Menendez, the land under exploitation is dominated by cultivation of crops (46%), followed by seasonal grasslands (30%) and permanent grasslands (15%). The local development plan for the municipality has identified 4,569 Ha of critical ecosystems for restoration by 2030 of which 1,569Ha are agroforestry systems, 2,000 Ha tropical forests and 1,000 Ha being mangrove systems. According to the 2007 Census in the agriculture and livestock sector, the land under exploitation is mainly owned by producers (75%) while 18% of land is leased (Figure 13). There are 80 cooperatives of small producers present in San Francisco Menendez, from those 16 are women led cooperatives.
- San Francisco Menendez municipality is part of the broader South Ahuachapán landscape that includes the municipalities of Jujutla, Guayamango and San Pedro Puxtla. These municipalities are administratively grouped together through the Association of Municipalities of Microregión Sur with the objective of establishing synergies for their development and for environmental management through concerted actions. Actions along these municipalities is also strategic as these also share access to the same aquifers (Figure 12) thus linking them, at a landscape, administrative and hydrological level. Population for this larger region is 98,016 (49,899 women) of which 75,515 people reside in rural areas.
 D. L. Hartmann, a. M. G. K. Tank, and M. Rusticucci, “IPCC Fifth Assessment Report, Climatie Change 2013: The Physical Science Basis,” Ipcc AR5, no. January 2014 (2013): 31–39, https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781107415324.
 IPCC, “Climate Change, Adaptation, and Vulnerability,” Organization & Environment 24, no. March (2014): 1–44, https://doi.org/http://ipcc-wg2.gov/AR5/images/uploads/IPCC_WG2AR5_SPM_A....
 (Cai et al., 2015; Harger, 1995; Neelin et al., 1998; Takahashi et al., 2011; Torrence and Webster, 1999; Wolter and Timlin, 2011)
 Ministry of Economy; General Directorate of Statistics and Census –DIGESTyC; El Salvador: 2014; Estimates and Trends of Municipal Population 2005-2025
 STPP and MINEC-DIGESTYC (2015). Multidimensional Measurement of poverty. El Salvador. San Salvador: Technical and Planning Secretariat of the Presidency and the Ministry of Economy, through the General Directorate of Statistics and Census.
Compound Poverty: Takes into account the essential areas for human development and well-being. A total of twenty indicators around five essential well-being dimensions: a) education; b) housing conditions; c) work and social security; d) health, basic services and food security; and e) quality of the habitat.
 STPP & MINEC-DIGESTYC, “Medición Multidimensional de La Pobreza. El Salvador.,” San Salvador: Secretaría Técnica y de Planificación de La Presidencia y Ministerio de Economía, a Través de La Dirección General de Estadística y Censos., 2015.
 Minerva Campos et al., “Estrategias de Adaptación Al Cambio Climático En Dos Comunidades Rurales de México y El Salvador,” Adaptation Strategies to Climate Change in Two Rural Communities in Mexico and El Salvador, no. 61 (2013): 329–49, http://www.boletinage.com/61/16-CAMPOS.pdf.
 For example, accumulated rainfall in the southeast area of the country was less than 10 mm, representing a 95% deficit from average rainfall
 Almanaque 262. State of human development in the municipalities of El Salvador, 2009.
 Defined as the non-linear land use change process associated with societal and biophysical system changes.
 The analysis was conducted using Google Earth Engine, allowing the production of wall-to-wall spatially explicit information at multiple spatial scales. The analysis included Climate models generated by both long-term climate predictions and historical interpolations of surface variables, including historical reanalysis data from NCEP/NCAR, gridded meteorological datasets such as the NLDAS-2, and GridMET, and climate model outputs like the University of Idaho MACAv2-METDATA and the NASA Earth Exchange’s Downscaled Climate Projections. The prioritization also included the analysis of spatially-explicit land surface variables over time, such as: Evapotranspiration/Latent Heat Flux product (8-day composite product produced at 500 meter pixel resolution), providing information on the hydrologic cycle, which has direct and significant influence on agriculture cycles in the region, as well as the amount of solar radiation, atmospheric vapor pressure, temperature, wind, and soil moisture available. The prioritization also included analysis of salinity anomalies using the Hybrid Coordinate Ocean Model, Water Temperature and Salinity (HYCOM) (Revealing that salinity has not been decreasing as result of local meteorological processes over the past several years). The analysis also included Long-Term drough Severity estimations using the Palmer Drought Severity Index (PDSI), which has been effective in effective in determining long-term drought in the intervention area. The PDSI data and analysis considers surface air temperature and a physical water balance models, taking into account the observed effects of increasingly warm temperatures, and high evapotranspiration, leading to systemic imbalances affecting local hydrological cycles (refer back to Figure 13).
 This dataset and analysis considers runoff as the excess of liquid water supply (precipitation) used by monthly Evapotranspiration and soil moisture recharge and is derived using a one-dimensional soil water balance model and it correlates well to measured streamflow from a number of watersheds globally.
Component 1. Ecosystem-based adaptation for enhanced resilience at a territorial level
Component 2. Alternative and adapted livelihoods identified and made viable for resilient livelihoods
Component 3. Regional Climate and Hydrological Monitoring for Enhanced Adaptation Planning
Component 4. Strengthening of inter-institutional coordination and local governance for landscape management in the face of climate variability and change