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Leveraging national communications to
integrate climate change issues into
development policy
Sub-Regional Workshop for GEF Focal Points in
West and Central Africa
Accra, Ghana, 9-11 July 2009
OUTLINE
 Key climate change threats in Africa
 Role of National Communications (NC)
 How to use the potential of NC projects to
integrate climate change into development and
sector policies
Agriculture to face changes
 Vulnerability high due to important employment, economic role
 Significant drops in crop yield expected in most of the region for
current practices
• Agroclimatic zones for highland crops (tea/coffee) shrink/
disappear
• Many areas become less suitable for staple crops
• Drought-tolerant crops not supported by agricultural policies
 Livelihoods of subsistence farmers and pastoralists especially
threatened
 Increasing risk of damage from diseases, pests, weeds and
storms
What does this have to do with
National Communications?
The Initial National Communication (INC) process
was important because:
 The INC was the first effort to climate summarize
information relating to GHG emissions and its key
vulnerabilities
 The INC has generated awareness about Climate
Change issues and helped catalyse awareness of
climate change issues
 The INC was the first point of reference for many
development partners to support CC mitigation
and adaptation activities in a country
BUT:
 The focus was seen on ‘International Convention
reporting’ – Opportunities to channel information
into non-environmental policy processes were lost
 The INC was conducted by technical experts, with
limited participation of other stakeholders from
public and private sectors
 Assessments and language was academic in
formats not very helpful to policy makers
Second National Communications (SNC):
A second opportunity!
 Climate Change is more than environmental
reporting – the SNC process is relevant for all
policy segments
 The SNC is a strategic policy support tool to
highlight and communicate Climate Change
priorities
 Producing an SNC document not the end point.
SNC information can be used to map socioeconomic vulnerabilities, understand economic
impacts of CC and frame follow-up measures
SNC should be a vehicle
to inform and facilitate:
 Institutional positions and responses to
climate change issues
 Continued analysis and review of climate data
to stay up-to-date on vulnerability dynamics
 Inter-ministerial dialogue to address primary
climate change concerns in national priorities
 Integration of climate risk reduction
into sectoral and development planning
How can countries make full use of
SNC potential?
1) Ensure that the studies commissioned by the SNC
team address relevant policy questions
2) Ensure that the SNC does not work in isolation in
the Environment Department. Establish a platform
to share SNC information with other departments.
3) Make sure the mitigation and adaptation studies of
the SNC deliver information that is suitable for the
definition of follow-up measures (e.g. further
assessments, project formulation, fundraising)
How can countries make full use of
SNC potential? (cont.)
4) Make sure the SNC highlights critical short-term
and long-term policy challenges and proposes
some options for priority sectors
5) Make sure the SNC process picks up existing
capacity gaps and opportunities in the country to
understand, analyze and address Climate Change
issues
6) Make sure SNC work is complemented with
targeted awareness and communication actions
for public/private/policy stakeholders
Next steps
 Understanding the potential of SNC to provide
policy inputs
 Actively encouraging involvement and
supporting input by relevant government
institutions
 Helping to make the SNC better visible
 Having a concrete follow-up for the SNC in mind
 Ensuring that all mitigation and adaptation
assessments in the SNC maintaining a human
focus
Leveraging National Communications - Summary
1. National Communications:
process and outputs
Informed allocation of public /
private financing to resilient and
low-carbon economic growth
CC Adaptation and mitigation
priorities identified
2. CC Adaptation and Mitigation
platforms, plans and strategies
Priority CC projects identified
3. Adaptation financing and carbon
financing options explored to
undertake priority measures
Priority CC projects financed
Project lessons utilized in
national / sector plans
Institutional partnerships
developed & strengthened
Project lessons captured
and analyzed (M&E)
Discussion
 How can GEF focal points help in
making the SNC more relevant to policy
making?
 What role can GEF Focal Points play in
linking priorities that emerge from
National Communications with other
GEF programming?