CCA Growth: Implementing Climate Resilient and Green Economy Plans in Highland Areas in Ethiopia

Project Overview

The "CCA Growth: Implementing Climate Resilient and Green Economy Plans in Highland Areas in Ethiopia" project will work to mainstream climate risks into national and sub-national planning processes thereby increasing the resilience of local communities across the Ethiopian highlands to climate change.

Today in Ethiopia, climate change considerations are not reflected in development planning and decision making at national and local levels. The expected changes in climate and its impact on livelihoods are severe, especially in the highlands of Ethiopia. If climate change is not addressed, it is more than likely that expected development gains will not be realized. Recurrent drought is another persistent risk in Ethiopia, and continued stresses from severe weather events and changing rainfall patterns raise the spectre of hunger, malnutrition and diminishing returns on investments in poverty reduction. Furthermore, the impacts of weather variability and climate change will not be uniform across the country: some regions are more vulnerable than others. Vulnerability will depend on livelihood type and exposure to risk, both of which are highly variable even within small/local regions.

Changes in the weather patterns marked by greater variability are imposing additional risks to human development in Ethiopia. These risks are most heavily borne by farmers engaging in subsistence or rain-fed agriculture, both for landless households whose income largely derives from on-farm wage labour, and women-headed households because of their baseline vulnerability to external shocks. With funding from the Global Environment Facility Least Developed Countries Fund, this project will strengthen the adaptive capacity and resilience of these targeted groups from the impacts of climatic variability and change.

The project will also put 17,800 hectares of agricultural, rangeland and forest landscapes under sustainable land management systems, including 800 hectares of new exclosure sites, maintenance of 8000 hectares of existing exclosures and planting of indigenous and multi-use plant species for over 8800 hectares of degraded land.

Expected Outcomes

Outcome 1 - Capacities enhanced for climate-resilient planning among communities, local government and central government

Outcome 2 - Use of climate information for risk management strengthened for smallholder farmers, with a focus on women and youth

Outcome 3 - Adapted and flexible income and employment opportunities generated for poor people, with a focus on climate-smart agriculture and integrated watershed management

Project Details

Levels of Intervention

District

Source of Funds

GEF-LDCF

Key Implementers

National Governments

Funding Amounts

US$6.2 million GEF-LDCF
US$10.4 million (US$10.3 million Government of Ethiopia, US$150,000 UNDP)

Project Partners

United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
Global Environment Facility (GEF)

Project Dates

2016 to 2021

Introduction

The "CCA Growth: Implementing Climate Resilient and Green Economy Plans in Highland Areas in Ethiopia" project will work to mainstream climate risks into national and sub-national planning processes thereby increasing the resilience of local communities across the Ethiopian highlands to climate change.

Today in Ethiopia, climate change considerations are not reflected in development planning and decision making at national and local levels. The expected changes in climate and its impact on livelihoods are severe, especially in the highlands of Ethiopia. If climate change is not addressed, it is more than likely that expected development gains will not be realized. Recurrent drought is another persistent risk in Ethiopia, and continued stresses from severe weather events and changing rainfall patterns raise the spectre of hunger, malnutrition and diminishing returns on investments in poverty reduction. Furthermore, the impacts of weather variability and climate change will not be uniform across the country: some regions are more vulnerable than others. Vulnerability will depend on livelihood type and exposure to risk, both of which are highly variable even within small/local regions.

Changes in the weather patterns marked by greater variability are imposing additional risks to human development in Ethiopia. These risks are most heavily borne by farmers engaging in subsistence or rain-fed agriculture, both for landless households whose income largely derives from on-farm wage labour, and women-headed households because of their baseline vulnerability to external shocks. With funding from the Global Environment Facility Least Developed Countries Fund, this project will strengthen the adaptive capacity and resilience of these targeted groups from the impacts of climatic variability and change.

The project will also put 17,800 hectares of agricultural, rangeland and forest landscapes under sustainable land management systems, including 800 hectares of new exclosure sites, maintenance of 8000 hectares of existing exclosures and planting of indigenous and multi-use plant species for over 8800 hectares of degraded land.

Project Details

The key underlying causes of vulnerability are multiple. Land is highly degraded due to deforestation for wood fuel and charcoal production as well as timber for construction, unsustainable farming practices, cultivation of fragile and marginal land and overgrazing, combined with rapidly increasing human and livestock populations.

Such environmental degradation has resulted in changes to the water cycle, poor soil quality, and in highland areas a barren land that is devoid of vegetation cover, which is exposed to soil and wind erosion, thereby creating a self-reinforcing cycle of reduced land fertility, reduced water resources, and lower crop and livestock production and productivity.

Other human-caused stresses such as eutrophication, acid precipitation, toxic chemicals and the spread of exotic/invasive plant species in the rift valley lakes further reinforce this cycle. The long-term preferred solution is to build sustainable and climate-resilient economic growth among vulnerable communities, targeting eight highland areas in Ethiopia.

This will involve taking the essential elements of the participatory and capacity development approach of the MERET (Managing Environmental Resources to Enable Transitions) programme, but addressing identified weaknesses by adding strong elements of requirements for climate change adaptation (e.g. alternative livelihoods, crop diversification, resilient agricultural practices, better water management and irrigation), capacity development of Woreda and regional government (technical training and mentoring for participatory vulnerability assessments, environmental impact assessments, cost-benefit analysis of climate-smart investments, no regrets interventions, integrating climate change risks and opportunities in development planning and budgeting).

Additionally this involves addressing participatory monitoring, impact assessment and action learning in order to assess what makes for successful adaptation and growth strategies in highland areas across different climate and agro-ecological zones, cultural traditions and agricultural practices, as well as strengthening of learning pathways to national policy processes.

Climate-Related Hazards Addressed: 
Level of Intervention: 
Key Collaborators: 
Implementing Agencies & Partnering Organizations: 
United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
Global Environment Facility (GEF)
Project Status: 
Under Implementation
Location: 
Rural
Funding Source: 
Financing Amount: 
US$6.2 million GEF-LDCF
Co-Financing Total: 
US$10.4 million (US$10.3 million Government of Ethiopia, US$150,000 UNDP)

Key Results and Outputs

Outcome 1 - Capacities enhanced for climate-resilient planning among communities, local government and central government

Output 1.1: Assessment of the capacity and resource needs of MoANR, MoLF, MoFEC, MEFCC, MoWIE and NMA at federal, regional and Woreda-level to build climate resilience.

Output 1.2: Capacity development of staff from MoANR, MoLF, MoFEC, MEFCC, NMA and MoWIE at federal, regional and Woreda-level on climate change and climate-resilient planning.

Output 1.3: Training of extension agents and local communities to integrate climate change into planning processes.

Output 1.4: Annual knowledge-sharing forum of regional and Woreda-level sectoral experts, extension agents and community representatives.

Output 1.5: Public awareness-raising campaign and training programme for local communities – including for women and youths – on the implementation of climate-resilient adaptation interventions and diversified livelihoods

Outcome 2 - Use of climate information for risk management strengthened for smallholder farmers, with a focus on women and youth

Output 2.1: A functional climate information and early warning system to monitor weather conditions.

Output 2.2: Community-based climate forecast and decision-making support tool.

Output 2.3: Capacity development of extension agents, CBOs (women’s groups, school clubs and youth groups) as well as farmers on climate information and monitoring systems.

Outcome 3 - Adapted and flexible income and employment opportunities generated for poor people, with a focus on climate-smart agriculture and integrated watershed management

Output 3.1: Vulnerability assessments and integrated watershed management and landscape management plans.

Output 3.2: Integrated watershed management across the eight target Woredas.

Output 3.3: Diversified livelihoods, including animal fattening, value-addition to agricultural products and off-farm opportunities.

Output 3.4: Strategy for monitoring, evaluating and upscaling activities, including potential for local investment by microfinance institutions (MFIs).

Contacts

Benjamin Larroquette
Regional Technical Advisor