The 8th International Conference on Community Based Adaptation to Climate Change concluded in Kathmandu on Wednesday with a declaration on financing local adaptation efforts and a call for reaching all the climate funds to the local communities.
It also called for targeting the most vulnerable to cope with the adverse impacts of climate change.
The declaration said financing local adaptation can succeed if it is led by the most vulnerable and disadvantaged countries and communities, tailoring approaches to context-specific needs, and capitalising on communities’ values and strengths, climate change experts told the five-day international conference that began on April 26.
Christiana Figueres, executive secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, spoke at the concluding day of the meeting, according to a message received here on Thursday.
The Kathmandu declaration says the needs and priorities of the most vulnerable and disadvantaged communities and groups, including the poor, women, children, youth, indigenous people, landless people, persons with disabilities, whose capacity should be strengthened to access resources for adaptation should be programmatically prioritised.
The stakeholders must be able to access information about availability, deployment and utilisation of adaptation funding to ensure mutual accountability and transparency, including tracking financial flows at all stages.
Strong environmental and social safeguards and robust multi-stakeholder consultation processes are required to ensure that adaptation interventions do not increase the vulnerability both within and across national borders, and limit the wellbeing and choices of future generations, the declaration further said.
The conference said the contributions that at risk communities to adapting to climate impacts as they hit, though recognise that this is not enough for them to fully cope with the impacts of climate change.
Developed country governments must scale up public finance – a starting point for this would be a medium term finance target at the UNFCCC and its related protocols.
The international finance bodies, including the Green Climate Fund, should prioritise systemic and transformational change and channel funding to the local level, by scaling up successful practices and strategies into planning and implementation processes, including integrating with disaster risk reduction, humanitarian aid, conservation, development, forecast-based financing, as well as building the capacities of countries and communities to access and manage funds, according to the Kathmandu declaration.
The experts said that funding should be needs-based and made available through enhanced direct access mechanisms by following equitable, simplified, and transparent processes, some of which is explicitly mentioned in the governing instrument of the Green Climate Fund.
Finance should be focused on building natural capital, climate-resilient work and livelihoods, community assets, urban as well as rural resilience, health, nutrition, technical capacity, institutional strengthening, and building resilience in basic services infrastructure, accounting for ecosystems services, and without compromising environmental integrity or national sovereignty.
The governments of the climate vulnerable countries, including Bangladesh, should be the primary channel for adaptation finance, and should ensure coordinated public sector adaptation planning and implementation, sustainability, and accountability to local communities, they said.
Representatives of a range of public, civil society, private, local, regional, international agencies, and governmental and non-governmental organisations participated in the meeting in Kathmandu, Nepal. -UNB