NAP Expo 2019: Raising adaptation ambitions by advancing NAPs
10 April 2019, Songdo, Republic of Korea: Over 300 climate change adaptation experts attended the 6th global NAP Expo. The five-day NAP Expo highlighted country progress on National Adaptation Plan (NAP) development and provided opportunities for discussion on further advancing adaptation planning.
The NAP Expo is an annual outreach event organised by the Least Developed Countries Expert Group (LEG) under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), in collaboration with various bodies and organisations, to promote exchange of experiences and foster partnerships between a wide range of actors and stakeholders on how to advance NAPs.
The NAP Expo 2019 was conducted as part of the Korea Global Adaptation Week 2019, which comprised the Resilience Frontiers organised by the secretariat, the Adaptation Forum organised by the Adaptation Committee, and a regional Technical Expert Meeting on Adaptation organised by the Green Climate Fund (GCF) secretariat.
The joint Global Environment Facility (GEF)-funded UNDP-UN Environment NAP Global Support Programme (NAP-GSP) facilitated sessions at the NAP Expo 2019, contributing to the exchange of knowledge, and enabling rich discussion on the challenges and opportunities in the process to formulate and implement NAPs.
NAP-GSP facilitated sessions at NAP Expo 2019
On 8 April 2019, a session led by NAP-GSP took place entitled Country approaches in designing the formulation of NAPs and experience with accessing GCF readiness support for the formulation of NAPs.
This session drew on country experiences from UNDP, Thailand and Bhutan, which received support from the NAP-GSP and the UNDP-FAO Integrating Agriculture into NAPs Programme (NAP-Ag) to strengthen their technical capacities to formulate and implement their NAPs and to access funding to do so.
Both countries demonstrated strong stakeholder engagement, contributing to an efficient cross-sector coordination mechanism in their NAP development. However various challenges remain with regards to access to climate finance, including technical capacity restraints in developing climate rationale, reliability of climate information, lack of awareness raising and lack of consistent guidelines for developing project proposals.
Best practices were highlighted during the session. These include the need to comply with the GCF 10 review criteria (GCF Readiness Guidebook), and to ensure stakeholder engagement and alignment with other development and climate change frameworks (including national development plans, NDCs etc.). The requirement to use tools to build the evidence base was also emphasised, for example, multicriteria analysis, cost benefit analysis to quantify and monetise impacts. The representative of Thailand, from the Office of Agricultural Economics, described the application of such tools under the NAP-Ag. Other issues discussed include the requirement for a strong theory of change, with the identification of a main problem, barriers, and desired outcomes to reach a specific impact. It also emerged that countries share common challenges in driving NAPs which included availability and accuracy of climate data and information and level of awareness of different stakeholders.
On 9 April 2019, a NAP-GSP-led session took place entitled Developing lasting and effective processes to support the iterative formulation and implementation of NAPs.
This session benefitted from representation from Africa, Asia and Latin America and the Caribbean regions, from least developed and developing countries. In the process to formulate and implement the NAP, efforts should be made to align with national priorities, based on latest available scientific data and information. NAP implementation also relies on integrating adaptation into plans and into budgets.
Countries were encouraged to further develop key building blocks such as institutional arrangements and funding mechanism with strong links to development processes, in order to ensure successful integration of adaptation planning.
The experiences in ensuring long-term adaptation planning in Cambodia, Cote d’Ivoire, St Lucia and the Sudan were presented – particularly focussing on the continued alignment of NAPs with national plans, priorities and based on the best available science.
Countries shared their national mechanisms supporting NAP implementation. Cambodia highlighted that the NAP process provided support to the Cambodia Climate Change Strategic Plan 2014-2023 (CCCSP), at both sectoral and subnational levels. Cote d’Ivoire emphasised its success in integrating of the NAP into sectoral strategies. The country also considers the NAP process as formative in the successful implementation and achievement of the Paris Agreement. A funding proposal was recently approved by the GCF, to close gaps and form synergies with other initiatives on adaptation planning. The country has addressed major elements required in NAP such as local NAPs, gender aspects, and economic instruments.
Saint Lucia highlighted the benefits of the transparency and accountability of the NAP process, bringing together all agencies, and ensuring every required sector is involved. St Lucia has also worked to mainstream gender into adaptation planning, conducted valuation of economic loss from extreme weather events and developed scenarios to account for the cost of inaction.
Sudan shared the importance capacity building, increasing scientific research and developing an enabling environment. However, in Sudan, many gaps remain concerning implementation, particularly regarding the integration of adaptation into the Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC). They also require capacity building for conducing vulnerability assessments.
Panellists considered the importance of private sector engagement. They agreed that it remains important to look at the mechanisms and institutional arrangements for broadening stakeholder consultations to include the private sector. It was recognised that it is difficult to keep the private sector engaged in adaptation. There is a need to demonstrate vulnerabilities and risks for the private sector, and show the climate change impacts on businesses. It was agreed that Government can support the process of engaging the private sector in adaptation, by strengthening the enabling environment and developing adaptation investment models.
The NAP Expo closed with the call to raise adaptation ambition by advancing the formulation and implementation of NAPs – with the spotlight on the 13 developing countries which have submitted their NAPs to the UNFCCC Secretariat, four of which are least developed countries (LDCs) - Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Sudan and Togo.
Overall, the NAP Expo 2019 served to reach out to all key stakeholders, including the private sector, youth, and vulnerable groups, galvinising NAP ambition though focussing on developing countries’ successful NAP formulation, and striving towards implementation.