GCCA+, the Alliance that supports 200 million people to build climate resilience

The Global Climate Change Plus (GCCA+), a flagship initiative funded by the European Union (EU),  celebrated on 7 December its 10th Anniversary with a special event at COP24. Nicola di Pietrantonio, representing the EU Directorate General of International Development and Cooperation, introduced a video that painted the depth, diversity and vast geographic coverage of the GCCA+. More than 200 million of the worlds most vulnerable people have benefited while governments across the globe have been supported to mainstream climate change action into more than 50 national plans and strategies.  

Guido Corno, technical expert of the GCCA+ Support Facility, moderated a series of presentations selected to consider how long-term adaptation can support sustainable development, and what the GCCA+ had learned by moving from theory to action. Lessons from the presentations were:

  • From Uganda, Kennedy N. Igbokwe, stressed the importance of ‘participatory cooperation’ in  transforming cash-cropping agriculture approaches and building sustainable livelihoods. With successes ranging from maize and beans, to chicken and coffee, Uganda’s learning demonstrates that building new partnerships and collaborations among diverse stakeholders helped to ensure technologies and learning are applied and refined on the ground. 
  • From Ghana, Augustine Collins Ntim, Deputy Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, highlighted how piloting specific agriculture policy reforms in a small number of districts helped to prove concepts before they were scaled across other districts and sub districts. Innovative national policies included channeling increased implementation funds to local governments with built-in performance incentives, to create safeguards against the misuse while encouraging self-sufficiency over time. 
  • From The Pacific Islands, Gillian Cambers, stressed that the thousands of small islands scattered across the world’s oceans face additional challenges. However she shared that combining the efforts among small projects that by themselves might not be feasible, can build scale and addres cross-cutting sustainability challenges.  For example, developing a factory to build water harvesting tanks in Niue creates a local industry and a locally owned solution to fresh water storage.
  • From Myanmar, Kyaw Moe Oo, reminded the audience that integration of climate change impact into national processes through the use of tools such as Impact environmental Assessments and the setup strong coordination mechanisms was key in linking adaptation practices to adaptation long term strategies.

As the GCCA+ looks forward, Elena Visnar Malinovska, Head of Adaptation Unit from the EU Directorate General CLIMA stressed that adaptation is not just an issue for the most vulnerable, and that as Europe itself begins to experience more climate stress, it too will learn from the important lessons created under the GCCA+ flagship.


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