Myanmar: the story of a strategy against climate change


Labutta, in the heart of the Irrawaddy delta, is one of the villages where residents were battered by Cyclone Nargis 10 years ago, in the worst natural disaster in the history of Myanmar. It was a devastating categoryfour cyclone that swept across the Bay of Bengal creating storm surges which ruined fields and crops and destroyed thousands of homes. In total, 2.4 million people were displaced and more than 138 000 people died. In the vulnerability-ranking global Climate Risk Index (CRI), that measures which country suffers most from extreme weather events, Myanmar was third in the world for the period 1997-2016, after Honduras and Haiti.



The Myanmar Climate Change Alliance (MCCA), supported by the GCCA, has funded the construction of multi-purpose cyclone shelters, as well as adaptation planning for the Irrawaddy delta area, in consultation with communities and local government authorities. The MCCA was also central to developing Myanmar’s Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC). Alongside conceiving the Myanmar Climate Change Strategy and Master Plan (MCCSMP), the MCCA supported the drafting of Myanmar’s INDC with technical support that helped to get the document ready in time to submit it to the UNFCCC.

The MCCA chose to set up a technical working group (TWG) as a multi-sectoral coordination mechanism to help guide the drawing up of the MCCSMP, one of the programme’s key deliverables. The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Conservation saw the value and recognized the success of such a consultative approach. The TWG participated in sectoral and plenary meetings, ensuring that the MCCSMP was included as part of the INDC in terms of institutional arrangements and planning for implementation. During this process, the MCCA also organised a series of sectoral workshops and bilateral meetings on mitigation and adaptation related to forestry, energy, industry, transport and agriculture. This was particularly effective and key for good coordination in a dynamic discussion, as the proposed actions were scattered across several ministries.

The INDC was co-written and submitted by using MCCA resources to:

  • Assess ongoing adaptive actions in the field, reflecting the need for a coordinated and programmatic approach to adaptation at the national level;
  • Identify key aspects and drafting of the national circumstances;
  • Organise a number of focal groups and bilateral consultations (forestry, energy, agriculture); 
  • Conduct interviews, collect data and facilitate the work of external consultants;
  • Participate in INDC discussions between March and June 2016 to transform it into an NDC;
  • Co-organise the advanced consultations on INDC implementation in March 2016.



Myanmar Climate Change Policy

Myanmar Climate Change Strategy (2018 - 2030)

Myanmar Climate Change Master Plan (2018 - 2030)