As the impacts of climate change grow ever more present and serious across the world, adaptation is no longer a luxury. Countries must adapt infrastructures and lifestyles in order to continue sustainable development and prevent loss of life.
Within the UNFCCC process, countries have been developing National Adaptation Plans (NAP), a framework for adaptation that aims to reduce vulnerability to climate impacts by building adaptive capacity, as well as to facilitate climate adaptation within new and existing policy frameworks. The NAP process, which was formally established in 2010 at COP 16, also aims to follow country-driven, gender-sensitive, participatory, and transparent approaches that take into consideration vulnerable groups, communities, and ecosystems. NAPs are informed by the best available science, traditional and indigenous knowledge, and gender-sensitive approaches.
However, the capacity gap between developed and developing countries means not all countries can develop NAPs with equal ease. Some countries lack financial support, or expert knowledge, for certain projects. Sharing information, expertise, and experiences between countries and other stakeholders is key to developing successful adaptation plans in time to counter impending climate impacts.
To advance this process, the NAP Global Network was established in 2014 at COP 20, and now connects over 1,500 participants from over 150 countries. It brings together experts to engage with governments, international institutions, non-governmental organizations, civil society, and researchers on how to plan and implement adaptation at the national level.
To achieve its goals, the NAP Global Network facilitates peer-to-peer knowledge exchange through exchange programmes and forums; supports national level action through its Country Support Hub; and develops resources and analyses that synthesize how countries are advancing their NAP processes. Thematically, the Network focuses on: gender; monitoring, evaluation, and learning; private sector engagement; nature-based solutions; vertical integration; strategic communications; sector integration; financing; and aligning NAPs with Nationally Determined Contributions.
The NAP Global Network at COP 26 will focus on highlighting the following elements of the NAP processes:
- Ecosystem-based adaptation: Protecting and restoring habitats to build resilience to climate impacts.
- Adaptation communications: Raising profiles of countries’ efforts to mainstream medium- and long-term adaptation, highlighting challenges, lessons, and future needs and opportunities.
- Inclusivity: Ensuring a gender-sensitive and participatory decision-making process that considers vulnerable populations.
The Earth Negotiations Bulletin will be covering the following NAP Global Network side events at COP 26 (times are GMT):
- 8 November: 13:30-14:30: Adaptation: From Planning to Action
- 9 November: 9:50-10:35: Capacity Building for Adaptation: Focus on Adaptation Communications
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