THE ADAPTATION Fund convened nearly 20 climate-vulnerable countries primarily from the Asia-Pacific for a training workshop in Bangkok, Thailand, aimed at enhancing access to climate finance in that region.
The September 2-3 workshop coincided with the 2019 Asia Pacific Climate Week, which is part of a regional climate week series organised by the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and partner organisations targeted at raising climate ambition and action around the Paris Agreement, UN Climate Summit in New York later this month and COP 25 in Chile in December.
“The Asia-Pacific region faces a wide range of climate-change impacts and risks, from devastating storms to flooded coasts and destructive droughts. Increased action is needed to build the resilience of the region and scale up activities to help meet its tremendous adaptation needs,” the fund said in a news release.
“The Adaptation Fund’s pioneering Direct Access modality is aimed at empowering countries to build their own capacities to respond to climate change, with capabilities to directly access climate finance and develop adaptation projects through accredited national implementing entities (NIEs) based in the countries themselves,” it added.
31 NIE accreditation
To date, the fund has accredited 31 NIEs around the world and nearly half are in small-island developing states, including Jamaica, or least developed countries.
Among the fund’s accredited national and regional implementing entities when taken together, about a quarter are in the Asia-Pacific, so the workshop was aimed at increasing the number of accredited entities in the region.
The workshop used a peer-to-peer learning approach and open dialogue to include case studies and interaction with the fund’s accreditation and climate finance readiness teams.
Training materials were provided from its new e-learning course on accreditation, as well as its report on ‘Bridging the Gaps in Accreditation’ that includes lessons and best practices.
Direct Access provides a pathway to Adaptation Fund project grants and often creates additional future opportunities through the capacity-building that occurs through the accreditation and project development processes.
These can include enhanced national priorities placed on climate change, scale-up potential of projects, and opportunities through the reciprocal fast-track process the fund has with the Green Climate Fund, which makes accreditation and reaccreditation more efficient for entities already accredited with one fund.
The fund also has innovated a streamlined, individualised accreditation process for smaller entities, such as those in small-island developing states, and the fund has accredited NIEs in Armenia, Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, and just this July, Tuvalu, through this process.
“Learning and sharing is one of the Adaptation Fund’s strategic pillars, so we hope that this workshop will enhance knowledge of participants toward achieving accreditations in the region. Ultimately this is a country-driven fund that is tailored to the unique adaptation needs that each country and region faces,” said fund manager Mikko Ollikainen.