GCCA support project to The Gambia in the mainstreaming of climate change

At a glance

2012-09-02 to 2016-07-02
Completed programmes
Min. of Finance and Economic Affairs (MOFEA), National Environment Agency (NEA), Department of Water Resources of the Min. of Fisheries and Water Resources, Min. of Forestry and the Environment (MOFEN)
Total budget
3,86 M€
GCCA priority area(s)
GCCA's action programme
Geographical scope
Country groups
Initial GCCA/GCCA+ contribution
3,860,000.00 €

Overall objective

Contribute to the capability of the government and people of the Gambia to adapt to increased climate variability and change.

Specific objective
  • Strengthen national level capacity to plan for and respond to climate change impacts in coastal areas.
  • Contribute to mainstreaming climate change into development planning.


A participatory and self-sustainable ICZM process is established.

To strengthen national level capacity to plan for and respond to climate change impacts in coastal areas, the GCCA planned to support the establishment of a participatory and self-sustainable integrated coastal zone management (ICZM) process. This included establishing a Technical Working Group of key coastal actors and defining its working modalities; developing an agreed vision and objectives for the coast, on the basis of an assessment of coastal vulnerability and cost-benefit analysis; developing proposals for harmonisation of sector policies in respect to ICZM and related climate change issues; and identifying specific options for future management of activities in coastal areas.

Priority coastal zone adaptation measures are identified.

Planned activities included a feasibility study for concrete coastal protection measures, looking at needs and options for the entire Atlantic coast and focusing on areas at risk. The study, conducted in the framework of the ICZM process, was designed to set the context for any major protection measures in the shoreline, and enable an assessment of long-term cost implications. Viable alternatives to sand mining in coastal areas for use in the construction industry were also included.

Local-level capacity to adapt to climate change is strengthened.

The programme also aimed at supporting demonstration and research projects in the following areas: (a) enhancing ecosystem and livelihood resilience to climate change and/or ecosystem rehabilitation in coastal zones; and (b) developing viable alternative processes to sand extraction for the construction industry. Interventions included the promotion of the reinforcement of community-based organisations or village development committees, and the involvement of private actors.

The knowledge base for integrating climate change into key sectors is strengthened, and a national climate change policy is formulated.

Planned activities included the establishment of a working group to support climate change capacity building; the scoping of issues and studies to generate evidence; the analysis of sector needs and possible resource mobilisation strategies; the definition of guiding principles and a roadmap to develop an overarching policy document; and the definition of a national climate change policy and facilitation of its validation.

Institutional arrangements and coordination mechanisms for climate change are rationalised.

Planned activities included institutional analysis, and the development of recommendations for institutional arrangements; and the establishment of climate change-related inter-institutional coordination mechanisms.

Decision makers' climate change adaptation response capacity is strengthened.

Sensitization and training were planned on the relationship between climate change and development and on selected technical topics. This activity targets policy makers and planners in key ministries and agencies, National Assembly members, and civil society representatives.

Achievements to date
  • Thematic Working Groups were established and started working on the mainstreaming of climate change into national policy.
  • A communication event to launch the project at national level was organised in May 2014.

Challenges and lessons learned

The final evaluation (May 2016) indicated the following observations:

  • To manage a programme on a national scale requires experience and appropriate capacity at all levels. Once the institutional capacity is in place, the nominated implementing partners need to be guided by a clear, appropriate and Cabinet endorsed strategy (NCCP and/or ICZM Strategy).
  • To assist long term sustainability, it is important to set national "Focal Points" at institutional level.
  • Capacity building activities should foresee cross-fertilisation of ideas and messages with future CB events.
  • Recipient country should be supported in its understanding of EU procedures and be proposed more training early on in the project. In the Gambia, this impacted on project efficiency (e.g., late notification of the "Date + 3 " rule).

Please check further information available in http://observer.gm/africa/gambia/article/38m-climate-change-project-launched-in-gambia

"The Gambia government will not fail in its commitment to bring about and pursue relevant national programmes and projects necessary to help us confront the issue of climate change sufficiently."

Dr Isatou Njie-Saidy, Vice-President of the Gambia and Secretary of State for Women's Affairs, giving the keynote speech at The Gambia Climate Change Forum, 2008