Nature-based Solutions for Climate Change Adaptation:
From Concept to Implementation
Thursday 9 September 2021
10:00 AM (UTC +7)
Challenges related to climate change impacts, loss of natural ecosystem health, and disaster risks confront the Asia Pacific region at various degrees in ensuring both socio-economic development and environmental conservation. Innovation has become the buzzword of the decade in identifying solutions to address climate change, but the simple solutions that lie in nature have not been adequately capitalized on because nature has been understood as a resource commodity rather than a solutions provider.
With the increasing threats and incidences of climate change and disaster risks mostly attributed to the loss of nature, and the recent convergence of the COVID 19 pandemic, there has been growing momentum in considering nature-based solutions (NbS) in facing these challenges. Studies have shown that Nature-based solutions (NbS) can potentially provide up to 30% of cost-effective global CO2 mitigation targets by 2030 while limiting global warming to 1.5C (Griscom B. et al. 2019). The World Economic Forum Report (WEF 2020) indicated that the NbS could unlock an estimated USD 10 trillion of business opportunities and could create 395 million jobs in 2030, beyond providing important biodiversity, climate mitigation, and adaptation outcomes. But there is a critical need to address the knowledge gap in implementing NbS (UNDRR2020). The 2021 Asia and the Pacific SDG Progress Report indicated that the region is regressing on critical goals of climate action (Goal 13) and life below water (Goal 14) with very slow or stagnant progress on the overall goals (UN ESCAP,2021). Even the portfolio of global investments in climate finance, including the Green Climate Fund (GCF) and the Adaptation Fund have made a very limited investment in NbS and Ecosystem-based adaptation projects. For example, in 2020 out of US$2.66 billion from GCF allocated for adaptation projects, only US$ 0.42 billion were allocated for ecosystems and their services, the least among all the climate solution areas (GCF 2020). Also, only about 15% of Adaptation Fund investments have gone to ecosystem-related activities since 2006 (Global EbA fund,2021).
Against this backdrop, understanding how our actions are intertwined with nature and investing in restoration and protection of our nature which offers low-cost and long-term solutions to protect lives, livelihoods, and infrastructure, and advance progress toward the SDGs is very crucial. NbS has a potential climate solution for reducing emissions and increasing carbon storage, maintaining the ecological integrity of our critical natural ecosystems, and respecting the rights and livelihoods of Indigenous people and local communities.
This webinar will aim to help identify opportunities for NbS in adaptation to climate change, particularly, having a common understanding and interpretation of NbS concepts and take advantage of existing traditional ecological knowledge in NbS application. It will provide experiences, and emerging priorities of key donors and implementing agencies supporting nature-based solutions for adaptation and benefits of investing in nature-based solutions.
Mr. Sanjaya Bhatia
Office for North East Asia (ONEA) and Global Education and Training Institute (GETI), United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR)