German Strategic Cooperation with SIDS on Climate Change Adaptation & Disaster Risk Management
Status of initiative: N/a
Description/achievement of initiative

Climate change is altering our world. Its consequences, including storms, droughts and floods, are particularly severe for people in developing countries and SIDS. Through development cooperation, Germany is therefore helping partner countries to face the new challenges by offering expertise, funding and practical assistance. The support by the German Development Cooperation aims at strengthening the capacities of Pacific Island Countries and regional organisations to cope with the anticipated effects of climate change that will affect communities across the region. It focuses on key economic sectors such as agriculture and livestock, forestry, fisheries, and tourism. Further focal areas are energy and education, e.g. through primary and secondary education and technical and vocational training. In the Caribbean, German Development Cooperation addresses the increasing vulnerability of Caribbean Small Island and Low-lying Coastal States to climate change and the attendant negative impacts on rural communities and economies, ecosystems (terrestrial and aquatic), and natural resources management. The adaptation of farmland and forest management to the impacts of climate change is improved in eight member states of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM). The management of marine and coastal protected areas, including through investments in ecosystem services, in selected member states is improved and the climate change induced risks facing the Caribbean's coastal population are reduced.In addition, the Global Programme on risk assessment and management (loss and damage) aims to generate tried-and-tested action guidelines on climate risk assessment and management for application by German Development Cooperation and its international partners (including SIDS) in the UNFCCC and UNISDR process in regions that are severely affected by climate change.Since 2008 the German International Climate Initiative (IKI) has supported more than 35 projects with a volume of approx. EUR 120 Mio. (USD 161 Mio.) in SIDS or with direct participation of SIDS. The IKI is promoting climate resilient and low carbon development and the protection and sustainable use of biodiversity in the Pacific, Caribbean and Indian Ocean. SIDS have a unique environment and wildlife that is affected by climate change and current developments.In this regard one major focus in the cooperation with SIDS is on Ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA) approaches for Islands. In the light of current and future climatic change EbA measures conserve important ecosystems, restore them, or help to manage them sustainably. In this way, the resilience of ecosystems can be increased and the vulnerability of Islands and their environment be gradually reduced.

Implementation methodologies

The implementation methodologies depend on the project type and include capacity development, technical and policy advice, investments, implementation and financing of agreed measures and pilot projects, studies, development of approaches and concepts, technology transfer and others.

Arrangements for Capacity-Building and Technology Transfer

Capacity Development is integral part of all German development cooperation and IKI projects. The detailed arrangements depend on the specific project design.

Coordination mechanisms/governance structure

Coordination is guaranteed by the respective regional organizations in the Pacific (SPC) and the Caribbean (CARICOM). The German development cooperation support for SIDS in the field of Climate Change Adaptation and Disaster Risk Management is subject to regular negotiations and agreements between partners.


In particular: Secretariat of the Pacific Commission (SPC), Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), Caribbean Community and Common Market (CARICOM) Partner Countries: Ongoing or planned cooperation inter alia with: Caribbean: Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Haiti, Guyana, Jamaica, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines Pacific: Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Kiribati, Nauru, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Republic of the Marshall Islands, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu Global: selected pilot countries including SIDS
The Climate Risk Adaptation and Insurance in the Caribbean project seeks to address climate change, adaptation and vulnerability by promoting weather-index based insurance as a risk management instrument in the Caribbean. The project has developed two parametric weather- index based risk insurance products aimed at low-income individuals and lending institutions exposed to climate stressors. The objective of the project is to help target countries increase social resilience and incentivize sustainable adaptation measures by incorporating climate risk insurance within a broader framework of disaster risk reduction strategies. It supports the development of weather-related risk management solutions, including insurance, targeted • at individuals (“Livelihood Protection Policy”) by providing swift non-bureaucratic cash payouts following extreme weather events (i.e. high wind speed and heavy rainfall) and • at lending institutions (“Loan Portfolio Cover”) with a loan portfolio hedge that can help create a space of certainty for institutions with credit portfolios exposed to natural disaster risk.
In the project Eastern Caribbean Marine Managed Areas Network (ECMMAN) climate resilience is enhanced in cooperation with six countries with a total budget of EUR 4 Mio. (USD 5.3 Mio.) The protection given to the designated areas ensures that sensitive marine ecosystems remain intact and are thus better able to withstand the stresses of climate change. Activities include enlarging and improving existing marine protected areas, promoting active involvement of the local population, and improving data and information systems as well as the network\'s financial and institutional sustainability. These will result in implementation of key elements of the Strategic Plan for the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), the CBD Programme of Work on Protected Areas and the contribution to the LifeWeb – and Caribbean Challenge Initiative. The ECMMAN will be the basis for the creation of a new Marine Conservation Corridor that helps to preserve biodiversity, protect the livelihoods of the population, promote food security and sustainable tourism, and reduce the vulnerability of coastal communities to the risks of climate change.
2017 / ongoing
Management of terrestrial and marine resources in the face of climate change in the small island states of the Caribbean: Two technical and one finance cooperation programme support numerous activities in the CARICOM region to address the increasing vulnerability of Caribbean Small Island and Low-lying Coastal States (SIDS) to climate change with a total budget of approx. EUR 21.3 Mio (USD 28.7 Mio.). Financial cooperation seeks to reduce the climate change induced risks facing the Caribbean’s coastal population through investments including, among others, the purchase of equipment directly related to marine protected areas management, reforestation, slope stabilization, coral reef restoration, construction of artificial reefs and break water. In addition, assistance will be provided to the countries in the preparation and implementation of the local adaptation measures, monitoring of project goals and impacts, and the systematization and dissemination of project experiences.Technical cooperation gives support to local communities and various civil society organisations in form of advisory services, training, procurement of material goods as well as financing and assistance agreements, local subsidies and the establishment of dialogue platforms to implement the measures for adaptation to climate change impacts. The programmes’ overall goal is to conserve natural resources and diversify farming and forest management. It focuses on increasing climate resilience by improving water supply (increase in water retention). The measures introduced for wastewater disposal in coastal zones establish the necessary link to safeguard protected coastal marine areas and coral reefs. The programme on coastal resource management aims to halt the serious impacts of un-adapted use of terrestrial and marine areas, as well as the impacts of climate change, on biodiversity, marine and coastal protected areas and their ecosystem services.
Coping with Climate Change and Loss & Damage in the Pacific island region: The Pacific programme supports the regional organisations, the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC), the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environmental Programme (SPREP) and the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG), in improving their information packages, advisory services and training opportunities on the topic of climate change. The programme focuses on natural resources found on land and in coastal waters, as well as on tourism, energy and training. In particular, deliverables are: 1.Strengthening governance structures & leadership skills in Choiseul; 2.Supporting livelihoods through healthy ecosystems; 3.Strengthening partnerships & coordination; 4.Promoting sustainable economic development of Lauru communities and Choiseul Province; 5.CC awareness raising and education; 6.Enhancing food security; 7.Promoting appropriate and climate-friendly infrastructures & technologies; 8.Securing water availability, accessibility and quality for local communities; 9.Implementing strategies to ensure sustainability of the programme; The global programme on risk assessment and management for adaptation to climate change will operate pilot activities in the pacific island region in order to generate innovative concepts and tried-and-tested action guidelines on climate risk assessment and management, which will support at-risk countries, in particular SIDS, in their efforts to adapt to climate change and cope with losses and damages. The programme’s main function is to generate experience that 1.can be used to help partner countries better manage challenges with regard to loss and damage from climate change and 2.simultaneously fuels the international climate policy dialogue with informed recommendations for action and proven concepts. The total budget of both programmes is approx. EUR 44.2 Mio. (USD 59.5 Mio.).
Resources devoted to implementation
Financing (in USD)
Staff / Technical expertise
Progress reports
Cut off date each year: 1 July
This initiative fulfils the SMART criteria.
Date of completion: depending on program
Contact information/focal point(s)
1. Dr. Michael Siebert; 2. Programme Office of the International Climate Initiative, 1. michael.siebert@giz.de; 2. programmbuero@programmbuero-klima.de

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