03 Jun 2011
Climate change disproportionately affects the most vulnerable communities in the world.
The impacts of extreme weather events and natural disasters hurt poor countries the most where lack of resources and weaker infrastructures leave people less equipped to respond and protect themselves. Read UNDP Chief Helen Clark's remarks on adaptation at the United Nations 2010 Climate Change Conference in Cancun.
Even gradual changes can be a huge additional burden on these countries, increasing the difficulties people face to simply secure food, water and a basic livelihood.
Niger is one such country struggling to adapt to climate change. With 80 percent of its territory covered by the Sahara desert and the semi-arid Sahel zone, Niger has been hard hit by frequent droughts with a dry season that lasts for 9 months of the year, putting rural livelihoods at severe risk.
Three years ago UNDP began supporting Niger, along with 19 other African countries, to develop strategies to help prevent some of the worst impacts of a changing climate. The US$92.1 million Africa Adaptation Programme, funded by the Government of Japan, aims to support countries like Niger create a stronger environment to prepare for, and adapt to, climate change.
By sharing knowledge and identifying strategies to manage climate risks, the programme enables governments to both learn from, and provide information to, communities about mitigating the risks of changing environments.
In the Rombou Rural Commune, in central Niger, communities are encouraged to practice alternative crop production, soil fertilization and regeneration techniques, and other adaptive practices. These help to promote sustainable water management, agricultural, and pastoral practices that help local communities better deal with current and future environmental challenges.
UNDP is working to strengthen countries’ capacities to adapt to climate change and to pursue development that is consistent with climate change mitigation, including through support to developing policies, capacities and strategies to advance low carbon, inclusive and climate-resilient development.
Talk to us: How do you think climate change is impacting development? What coping techniques do you think have been successful?
We help developing countries to put in place what people need for a decent life because reducing poverty and fighting climate change go hand-in-hand. Unless people have basic access to water, sanitation, food and energy, to institutions that work, and a say in the decisions that affect their lives, then they will not be able to cope with a changing climate.
The UN at 64: Climate Change in the Spotlight
- "Africa's human development drops 0.75% for every 1% increase in the gender gap," says new #Africa Human Development Report. 3 hours ago
- The Fijian Government and the European Union have signed a financing agreement for the ''Fiji Access to Justice'' programme worth 7.5 million Euro. The programme is designed to enhance the justice system in Fiji and provide more access for underprivileged and vulnerable groups. The signing ceremony took place at the Grand Pacific Hotel in Suva this morning. It was attended by the Honourable Attorney-General, Minister for Economy, Public Enterprises, Public Service and Communications Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, Chief Justice Anthony Gates, Chairperson of the Legal Aid Commission, Sharvada Sharma and UNDP Resident Representative Osnat Lubrani. Honourable Judges, Permanent Secretaries, President of the Fiji Law Society, Legal Practitioner, representatives of the Diplomatic Corps, representatives of civil society and the media were also present to witness the event. Funded by the EU under the 11th European Development Fund and implemented by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the five-year programme will empower more Fijians than ever before by providing them with legal services through the key justice institutions. The Legal Aid Commission (LAC), the Judiciary and other relevant institutions will benefit from substantial capacity building through training, technical assistance and provision of basic equipment. And Non-Governmental Organisations will also be supported to assist the LAC to reach out to Fijian citizens and provide them with the services they need. Speaking at the event, EU Ambassador to Fiji and the Pacific, H.E Andrew Jacobs said: ''Access to justice is a fundamental principle of the rule of law. A clear understanding of the role of specific public offices, such as the judiciary, the legal aid commission and other transparency and accountability institutions, are paramount in ensuring that law and justice prevail and citizens fully exercise their rights and responsibilities. The EU-Funded Access to Justice Programme will help ensure that Fijians are aware of their rights and can action them through the relevant state mechanisms,'' Fijian Government United Nations Development Programme - UNDP 3 hours ago
- "See more posts on"Facebook