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Mainstreaming climate change in development

Jun 12, 2009

OECD’s Policy Guidance on Integrating Climate Change Adaptation into Development Co-operation advances the notion of applying a climate lens to policymaking to reduce vulnerability. The document focuses on strengthening countries’ and donors’ capacities to integrate adaptation responses at various levels of development planning.

Policy Guidance on Integrating Climate Change Adaptation into Development Co-operation

Publisher: Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, 2009

In principle, a range of development activities could help reduce vulnerability to many climate change impacts. In some cases, however, development as usual may inadvertently increase vulnerability.

For instance, new roads might be weatherproofed from an engineering standpoint, even taking future climate into account, but they might trigger new human settlement in areas highly exposed to particular impacts of climate change, such as coastal zones vulnerable to sea-level rise.

This risk of maladaptation points to the need for partner countries to systematically assess climate risks and vulnerabilities, and to include potential adaptation measures in development policies, plans and projects.

This policy guidance is intended to provide policymakers and practitioners in development co-operation agencies with information and advice on how to mainstream climate change into development.

In line with Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness, this document seeks to align donor support with the strategies, institutions and procedures of partner countries. It is divided into three parts:

Understanding the Challenge – introduces human-induced climate change, places it within the context of weather and natural climate variability, and discusses its implications in key developing country regions.

In addition, it introduces the concepts of adaptation and mitigation, and the need to integrate climate change responses into regular development activity.

Integrating Climate Change Adaptation at National, Sectoral and Project Levels – takes a partner country perspective and discusses in detail how to assess and address climate risks and opportunities, and how to integrate adaptation responses within development at key decision-making levels: national, sectoral and project.

Integrating Climate Change Adaptation at the Local Level – examines the specific challenges and opportunities arising from climate change in urban and rural contexts and discusses how to incorporate adaptation considerations within government and community-level processes in both contexts.

The objectives of the OECD Policy Guidance are to:

  • Promote understanding of the implications of climate change on development practice and the associated need to mainstream climate adaptation in development co-operation agencies and partners  countries.
  • Identify appropriate approaches for integrating climate adaptation into development policies at national, sectoral and project levels and in urban and rural contexts.
  • Identify practical ways for donors to support developing country partners in their efforts to reduce their vulnerability to climate variability and climate change.
Source : Eldis
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