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Adaptation-mitigation synergies in climate finance

Fedele G., Locatelli B., Fayolle V.. 2014. In : Resilience and development: mobilising for transformation. Villeurbanne : Centre pour la Communication Scientifique Directe, p. 542-542. Resilience Alliance 2014, 2014-05-04/2014-05-08, Montpellier (France).

Global greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise and the effects of climate change have already been felt in many parts of the world. In order to assist countries in shifting towards low carbon and climate resilient development, the international community provides substantial financial resources through a variety of mechanisms. Climate finance is a key component in the response to climate change and to reaching a global agreement, as it was identified in the Bali Action Plan. Although funding for climate change mitigation has tripled in the last 5 years, the current volume of climate finance is still considered to be inadequate to address numerous and urgent challenges. Promoting combined adaptation and mitigation measures can offer a possible solution to limited funding and increase the cost-effectiveness and efficiency of climate change funds. This study examined how climate finance is supporting activities that pursue both adaptation and mitigation measures, and the associated opportunities, barriers and challenges. We focused our analysis on the land use sector, which is the main recipient of public funding for adaptation and the second biggest recipient for mitigation funding after renewable energy. In order to better understand perceptions, experiences and trends in combining these two strategies, we conducted interviews with representatives from major climate change funds and we analyzed the flows of public climate funding from existing data. The benefits of integrating both adaptation and mitigation were widely recognized by the interviewees in international climate change funding agencies, which in 2010-2011 disbursed similar amounts of funding to activities that address multiple climate change objectives as to those addressing adaptation only. Public funds supported joint adaptation and mitigation activities predominantly in the land use sector, followed by water and sanitation, and then by the energy sector. Mitigation projects that included adaptation as co-benefit received the majority of funding targeting multiple climate change objectives, confirming the opinion expressed by fund managers that there are clearer benefits arising from the integration of adaptation into mitigation rather than the contrary. Most of the public disbursements with double objectives were aimed at developing policies and strengthening national capacities in the context of REDD+ and biodiversity conservation, whereas only in a lesser extent at promoting land management practices. The findings suggest that the land-use sector has played a pioneering role in integrated and multifocal programming, but its potential to jointly tackle a number of global challenges could be further exploited to reach more beneficiaries at different scales. In addition, to be successful certain trade-offs and constraints must be addressed at several levels, including funding scope and design. Managers of climate funds should try to overcome the barriers that keep adaptation and mitigation segregated. Adaptation and mitigation funds have currently different priorities (geographically and in terms of beneficiaries and stakeholders) but synergy funding could better align the development priorities of recipient countries with global interests, whilst increasing capacities and creating new partnerships and dialogues. (Texte intégral)...

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