Developing countries at risk form a network for information sharing on Climate Change
| By Maureen Chigbo | May 20, 2013 @ 01:00 GMT
A NETWORK that will enable policymakers in countries at risk from climate change to share information was formed in Dhaka, Bangladesh, recently. Called the “Government Group Network on Climate Change Mainstreaming and Development,” members are from Bangladesh, Cambodia, Ethiopia, Kenya, Mozambique, The Gambia and Zanzibar.
Government representatives from these countries in Africa and Asia formed the network at the community-based Adaptation, CBA7, conference organised by the International Institute for Environment and Development, IIED, and the Bangladesh Centre for Advance Studies, BCAS. It brought together more than 250 international practitioners, scientists, government and non-government policy and decision makers.
The network will expand to include other countries and will support efforts by their respective countries to ensure that they factor climate change into their development plans.
Member countries of the network will also collaborate in ways that can strengthen their policies and plans by ensuring that they consider how climate change could affect development.
Already, the network has developed a framework for assessing and planning how to integrate climate into the business of national and sub-national planning professionals. The building blocks of the framework are political will, information and awareness, and resources for programmes and projects.
The group developed its plans at the 7th International Conference on Community-Based Adaptation to Climate Change in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Conference delegates – and online participants who followed the conference over the internet – learnt about ways that people around the world are adapting to climate change in both rural and urban settings, and how governments can embed adaptation in all policy arenas.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina opened the conference with a strong call for rich countries to help poorer ones to adapt, but also pointed out that developing nations were already leading the way in adaptation. “This year’s event was especially important in bringing on board significant participation from governments, who now join the civil society based groups that have been mostly involved so far. This seventh annual meeting has demonstrated how far and fast the community of practice has grown over just a few short years,” says Saleemul Huq, senior fellow in IIED’s climate change group.
“The conference was very useful both in terms of the things I learned that could be replicated at country level and through the interactive networking opportunities it created,” says Lamin Jobe from the ministry of finance and economic affairs in The Gambia. According to him, “It has inspired me to advocate for mainstreaming monitoring and evaluation into our climate change planning and implementation processes.”
“Bangladesh has reasserted itself as the adaptation capital of the world. “The issues of climate, development and vulnerability of the poor must be central to future decision making process. There must be assured, adequate and sustainable financial resources for the poorest of the world impacted by climate change induced extreme events,” says Atiq Rahman, director of BCAS. Next year’s conference will take place in Nepal and its theme will be ‘financing adaptation.’