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Adaptation Finance

agriculture and fields






Adaptation finance supports activities to build resilience to the impacts of climate change. The need for adaptation finance is particularly high in Sub-Saharan Africa and other Least Developed Countries (LDCs), and a number of countries are committed to financially supporting these actions under the UNFCCC.

According to Climate Funds Update, finance approved through climate funds for adaptation activities increased by 57 per cent from 2013 to 2014 from US$1.28 billion to US$2 billion. Between 2003 and late 2014, cumulative pledges to adaptation funds are over US$3 billion and these funds have approved over US$2 billion towards various activities. The multilateral adaptation funds that approved the largest volume of funding to date have been the Pilot Program for Climate Resilience (PPCR), of the World Bank’s Climate Investment Funds and the Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF) administered by the Global Environmental Facility. Money has been spent on disaster prevention and preparedness, agriculture, coastal zones and water and sanitation and infrastructure.

In addition to finance from dedicated Funds, there is growing evidence of the substantial domestic efforts to combat climate change. Where little international climate finance is available, domestic adaptation spending plays a crucial role. National budget spending on climate change in Ethiopia is as much as US$400 million a year, for example, and in Nepal, domestic spending for adaptation accounted for 76 per cent of the total governmental budget allocated to climate initiatives over the five years reviewed in a Climate Public Expenditure and Institutional Review (8/2007-12/2011).

Understanding where the money goes from climate funds once it reaches the implementing institutions is challenging. While transparency is increasing, greater level, detail and timeliness of information is needed. The Adaptation Finance Accountability Initiative identifies key institutional actors and challenges to funds at sub-national level to identify examples of good practice in delivering adaptation projects.


Image credits: P. Casier for CGIAR | Flickr

Adaptation finance: how can Durban deliver on past promises?
D. Ciplet; J. Timmons Roberts; M. Khan / International Institute for Environment and Development 2011
This briefing paper by the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED) is aimed at delegates of the 2011United Nations climate negotiations in Durban, South Africa. It makes clear the responsibilities imparted by pr...
Direct access to the adaptation fund: realising the potential of national implementing entities
J. Brown; N. Bird; L. Schalatek / Overseas Development Institute [ES] 2010
This policy brief outlines the challenges identified in rolling out the direct access mechanism for the Adaptation Fund (AF). Direct access refers to a new approach to fund distribution that bypasses the multilateral institutions that...
Accreditation of two new NIEs, approval of the second direct access projects
A.O. Kaloga; S. Harmeling / Germanwatch 2012
This report presents the outcomes of the 16th meeting of the Adaptation Fund Board (AFB) held in 2011. The report highlights the accreditation of two new National Implementation Entities (NIEs) as a key decision adopted by the AFB. Th...
Principles for delivering adaptation finance
T. Mitchell; S. Anderson; S. Huq / Institute of Development Studies, Sussex [ES] 2008
This briefing aims to stimulate debate on the relevant principles and mechanisms for effective adaptation delivery. It highlights the context of the debate noting that funding must increase significantly to match the needs of developi...
The Plumbing of Adaptation Finance: Accountability, Transparency, and Accessibility at the Local Level
World Resources Institute, Washington DC 2013
World Resources Institute working paper examining phase one of the Adaptation Finance Accountability Initiative. Between 2008 and 2012, the amount of international climate finance approved for developing countries increased con...
Fair share: climate finance to vulnerable countries
N. Bird / Overseas Development Institute [ES] 2014
Overseas Development Institute paper examining climate finance to developing countries, with a focus on Ethiopia, Tanzania, and Uganda. International climate change adaptation funding is, at its heart, a question of climate jus...