The Adaptation Fund was established to help people in the more than 140 developing countries that are parties to the Kyoto Protocol safeguard or improve their livelihoods when faced with the adverse effects of climate change. Over the past two years, the fund has dedicated US$165 million to increase climate resilience in 25 countries around the world.
Climate change is increasing the burdens of the poorest people in the world, who are often hardest hit by weather catastrophes, desertification, and rising sea levels, but who have contributed the least to the problem of global warming. In some parts of the world, climate change has already contributed to worsening food security, reduced the predictable availability of fresh water, and exacerbated the spread of disease and other threats to human health.
Helping the most vulnerable countries and communities is thus an increasing challenge and duty for the international community, especially because adaptation to climate change requires significant resources in addition to what is already needed to achieve international development objectives.
People in developing countries who have the will, the knowledge, and the ability to adapt to climate change often lack the means. A recent study by the World Bank estimated that developing countries face climate-change adaptation costs ranging from US$70 billion to US$100 billion annually by the year 2050 if world average temperature rises by 2 degrees Celsius, as scientists predict.
The Adaptation Fund expects demand for adaptation financing to continue increasing in the next few years as climate change continues to take its toll on people in poorer countries. In 2010, the first year the Fund was fully operational, financing went to four projects. By November 2012, that figure had grown more than six-fold to 25 projects. Over the next two years, the Adaptation Fund will be working to raise $100 million to meet the increased demand for project funding.
To learn more, visit www.adaptation-fund.org