REPUBLIC OF RWANDA
BREAKING COMPLEXITIES IN DECISION MAKING
BREAKING COMPLEXITIES IN DECISION MAKING
Rwanda Environment Management Authority (REMA)
Guidelines for Mainstreaming Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation in
the Environment and Natural Resources Sector
Enabling Sustainable Development through Climate
Change Adaptation and Mitigation
BREAKING COMPLEXITIES IN DECISION MAKING
FOREWORD ............................................................................................................................ 3
ACRONYMS AND ABBREVIATIONS ................................................................................... 4
1. INTRODUCTION .......................................................................................................... 5
1.1 GENERAL OVERVIEW ..................................................................................................................... 5
1.2 OBJECTIVES AND SCOPE OF THE GUIDELINES .............................................................................. 6
1.3 WHY MAINSTREAM CLIMATE CHANGE ADAPTATION INTO THE ENR SECTOR ....................... 6
2. CLIMATE CHANGE AND DEVELOPMENT: RISKS AND VULNERABILITIES .......... 7
2.1 CLIMATE CHANGE: A GLOBAL PHENOMENON WITH LOCAL EFFECTS ......................................... 7
2.2 FUTURE CLIMATE PROJECTIONS FOR RWANDA ....................................................................... 8
2.3 CLIMATE CHANGE VULNERABILITY IN ENVIRONMENT AND NATURAL RESOURCES SECTOR 10
3. RWANDA’S VULNERABILITY AND NATIONAL RESPONSE TO CLIMATE
CHANGE ................................................................................................................................ 12
3.1 OVERVIEW OF CLIMATE CHANGE IN RWANDA .......................................................................... 12
3.1.1 General ................................................................................................................................. 12
3.1.2.GHG Emissions and underlying Causes of Climate Change in Rwanda . 12
3.2 CLIMATE CHANGE IMPACTS ON ENVIRONMENT AND NATURAL RESOURCES ......................... 13
3.2.1 Forest Resources ............................................................................................................. 13
3.2.2 Water Resources.............................................................................................................. 14
3.2.3 Mining and Mineral Resources ................................................................................. 14
3.2.4 Wetlands ............................................................................................................................. 14
3.2.5 Land Resources ................................................................................................................ 14
3.3. IMPLICATIONS OF CLIMATE CHANGE FOR KEY ENR SECTOR PERFORMANCE INDICATORS ... 16
3.4 NATIONAL RESPONSE TO CLIMATE CHANGE IN RWANDA ....................................................... 18
4. OPPORTUNITIES AND ENTRY POINTS FOR MAINSTREAMING CLIMATE
CHANGE ADAPTATION AND MITIGATION IN THE ENR SECTORS ......................... 19
4.1 OVERVIEW OF THE ENR POLICY PROCESSES IN RWANDA ....................................................... 19
4.2 OPPORTUNITIES AND ENTRY POINTS FOR CCMA MAINSTREAMING IN THE ENR SECTORS 19
4.3 KEY AREAS FOR CCMA MAINSTREAMING IN THE ENR SECTOR PROCESSES ......................... 21
5. GUIDELINES AND TOOLS FOR MAINSTREAMING CLIMATE CHANGE
ADAPTATION AND MITIGATION IN ENR SECTORS ................................................... 24
5.1 CONCEPTUAL MODEL OF CLIMATE VULNERABILITY AND ADAPTATION ................................. 24
5.2 KEY ISSUES IN CCMA MAINSTREAMING IN THE ENR SECTOR ............................................... 25
5.3 PROCEDURES AND APPROACHES FOR CCMA MAINSTREAMING IN ENR SECTOR .................. 26
5.4 STAKEHOLDER PARTICIPATION AND INSTITUTIONAL ROLES IN CLIMATE CHANGE
ADAPTATION ........................................................................................................................................ 35
5.5 MAJOR CHALLENGES TO CLIMATE CHANGE ADAPTATION IN THE ENR SECTOR ..................... 36
5.6 SPECIFIC ACTIONS FOR EFFECTIVE CLIMATE CHANGE ADAPTATION IN THE ENR SECTOR . 37
REFERENCES ....................................................................................................................... 40
ANNEXES .............................................................................................................................. 41
Rwanda has come a long way on its Vision towards a medium income country by 2020, with
major achievements made in all sectors. However, climate change, a major global phenomenon
with serious local implications, threatens to undermine the achievements. Although Rwanda in
particular and Africa in general, have contributed very little to global warming, they will be
disproportionately impacted by climate change. Rwanda’s natural resources are particularly
vulnerable because of the high pressure of exploitation they are exposed to, the fragility of
ecosystems and low levels of scientific knowledge and technological innovation. Adaptation
measures can reduce the country’s vulnerability and significantly lower the costs of responding
to climate change. This is why REMA has prepared sector-specific guidelines to encourage and
facilitate the process and adaptation and mitigation.
Rwanda Environment Management Authority (REMA) has been leading the national response to
climate change, working with stakeholders to build adaptive capacity at all levels. Indeed, these
guidelines are part of on-going efforts to build national resilience and capacity to mitigate and
adapt to climate change. The guidelines complement existing tools, and are informed by recent
work on climate change and environmental mainstreaming in the development processes.
These Guidelines are intended for use by policy makers, planners, technocrats and analysts in
the Ministries and Agencies responsible for Natural Resources and Environment; ENRdependant
sectors Ministries; Development Partners, NGOs and private investors in mining,
water resources, forestry, wildlife and tourism, and wetland resources. They are a must-use
reference document for formulation, implementation and monitoring of policies, programmes,
projects and short-term plans in environment and natural resources. While REMA continues to
play its statutory role of coordination, regulation and support, the Ministry of Natural Resources
(MINIRENA) will take the lead in mainstreaming climate change adaptation into natural
resources policy processes, working hand in hand with other relevant ministries, Local
Governments and non state institutions.
Finally, I would like to recognise the team from the Centre for Resource Analysis (CRA),
who assisted us in preparing these guidelines. I also applaud the staff of REMA, especially
those associated with the Integrated Management of Critical Ecosystems (IMCE) project
which made the production of these guidelines possible and the World Bank which provided
the financing. Other national institutions and stakeholders who contributed to developing
these guidelines are gratefully acknowledged.
Finally, I argue the relevant institutions and individuals to make use of this and other
operational tools developed on climate change to build national resilience against climate
change impacts on our ecosystems and natural resources, as it’s the only way to assure
sustainable development in Rwanda.
Dr. Mukankomeje Rose
Director General, REMA
Acronyms and Abbreviations
AfDB African Development Bank
CCMA Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation
CDM Clean Development Mechanism
CPAF Common Performance Assessment Framework
CSOs Civil Society Organisations
DDPs District Development Plans
EAC East African Community
EDPRS Economic Development and Poverty Reduction Strategy
ENR Environment and Natural Resources
EU European Union
GDP Gross Domestic Product
GHG Green House Gases
GoR Government of Rwanda
GTZ German Technical Cooperation
MINAGRI Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources
MINECOFIN Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning
MINELA Ministry of Environment and Lands
MINIFOM Ministry of Forestry and Mines
MINIRENA Ministry of Natural Resources
MININFRA Ministry of Infrastructures
MoH Ministry of Health
NAFA National Forestry Authority
NAPA National Adaptation Plan of Action
NBI Nile Basin Initiative
NELSAP Nile Equatorial Lakes Subsidiary Action Programme
NRM Natural Resources Management
NUR National University of Rwanda
OECD Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development
OGMR Rwanda Geology and Mining Agency (French acronym)
RECO Rwanda Electricity Company
REMA Rwanda Environment Management Authority
RNRA Rwanda Natural Resources Authority
RURA Rwanda Utilities Regulatory Authority
RWASCO Rwanda Water Supply Company
SIDA Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency
SLM Sustainable Land Management
UNDP United Nations Development Programme
UNFCCC United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change
UNEP United Nations Environment Programme
WHO World Health Organisation
“…Climate change is emerging as the greatest environmental challenge of the
twenty-first century. What is more, a virtual Pandora's box of major global threats, such
as hunger, poverty, population growth, armed conflict, displacement, air pollution, soil
degradation, desertification and deforestation are intricately intertwined with and all
contribute to climate change, necessitating a comprehensive approach.” FAO.
1.1 General Overview
In 2000, Rwanda elaborated the Vision 2020, a plan expected to transform the country
from a low to medium-income country with a healthy and productive population. Halfway
to the Vision 2020, tremendous progress has been made in all sectors, and economic
growth has doubled from a per capita gross domestic product of US$ 250 to more than
US $510 by 2010. Rwanda’s development is dependent on her natural resources – fresh
water, biodiversity, forests, fertile soils, minerals, climate and beautiful landscapes.
While these resources have sustained livelihoods and the economy, they have been
progressively degraded, due to population pressure and inappropriate use. Now, climate
change has emerged as a new challenge and could halt or reverse the progress made
towards socioeconomic transformation, unless efforts are made to develop adaptive
capacity. Climate change repercussions will manifest in increased resource scarcity and
intensified environmental crisis.
Climate change is defined by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate
Change (UNFCCC) as a change of climate which is attributed directly or indirectly to
human activity that alters the composition of the global atmosphere and which is in
addition to natural climate variability observed over comparable time periods."
Green House Gas (GHG) emissions, which are the main causes of climate change, arise
principally from anthropogenic factors (human activities) although natural factors
contribute too. The types of activities also determine the kinds of GHGs emitted. Thus
there is need to: (i) mitigate climate change by undertaking actions that reduce GHG
emissions; and (ii) implement adaptation measures to protect the population from
climate change effects.
Climate change has adverse impact on economies and public health, and poor countries
like Rwanda will suffer the greatest impact (MINELA, 2010). In its 4 th Assessment
Report, the Inter-Governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concluded that Africa
was likely to experience more warming than the rest of the Planet (IPCC, 2007). This
implies that Africa should adapt perhaps more quickly than other regions.
The Government of Rwanda (GoR) has undertaken a number of measures to address
climate change, beginning with ratification of the United Nations Framework
Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in 1992, developing a National Adaptation
Action Plan (NAPA) in 2000, and formulating a low carbon growth strategy in 2010.
1.2 Objectives and Scope of the Guidelines
These guidelines are designed to provide basic and flexible guidance on how to:
i) conduct impact and vulnerability assessments in the ENR sector;
ii) identify opportunities and entry points for integration of climate change
mitigation and adaptation (CCMA) measures into the ENR sector;
iii) identify, analyse and integrate options for CCMA into the ENR policy processes
from policy formulation, financing, implementation and evaluation at national,
local and community levels. A special guide on designing and implementing
adaptation projects (of all scales) is included.
The guidelines will assist to improve the resilience of Rwanda’s ENR sector to climate
change effects and cushion the country’s economy from climate change shocks.
1.3 Why Mainstream Climate Change Adaptation into the ENR Sector
Rwanda’s environment and natural resources (ENR) sector comprises of the following:
Mining and mineral resources; Water resources; Forest resources; Wetlands;
Environment; and wildlife and protected areas.
With climate change, every sector and everyone is exposed and therefore potentially
vulnerable. It is evident that only sectors that integrate CCMA measures within their
policies, strategies, plans and budgets, would achieve their objectives.
The ENR (mining, water resources management, environment, wetlands management,
biodiversity, wildlife and protected areas) policy processes are particularly targeted.
Increasing adaptive capacity of these sectors will help develop resilience and cushion the
ENR-dependant livelihoods and other socioeconomic processes from the effects of
extreme weather events.
It is important to ensure that appropriate policies, plans and budgets are put in place in
good time to deal with the likely climate change effects on ENR sectors.
2. Climate Change and Development: Risks and
2.1 Climate Change: A Global phenomenon with local effects
The climate is the characteristic weather conditions of the atmosphere and its evolution
in a specific region; it includes the temperature, atmospheric pressure, wind and
precipitation. In 1997, the IPCC confirmed that there was unequivocal change in global
climate. Since then, average air temperatures have increased, there has been widespread
melting of snow and ice,
leading to rise in sea level.
The 10 warmest years
since 1850, are reported to
have all occurred within
the last 13 years (IPCC,
2007; WHO, 2009).
Figure 1: Indications of
Global temperature rise
(1850 – 2005)
Source: WHO (2009):
Protecting Health from Climate
The main issue is not that
climate change is
happening, but that there
is need to: a) mitigate climate change by undertaking actions that reduce emission of
green house gases (GHG); and b) implement adaptation measures to protect the
population and economy from the negative effects of climate change.
The most important characteristics of Climate change are:
It is happening now: In the last 100 years, the World warmed by approximately 0.75°C
(figure 1), with a much higher rate in the last 25 years (0.18°C every 10 years).
Extreme weather events are changing in frequency and intensity: It is considered that
heat waves have become more frequent over most lands, and the frequency of heavy and
erratic precipitation events has increased over most areas, including Rwanda.
Human activities are the main cause of climate change: Most of the observed increase in
temperatures since the mid-20th century is attributed to unprecedented increase in
human activities especially in economic and social development.
Human-induced climate change will continue for at least the next few decades, making
the need to adapt, important and urgent: The
development options chosen will influence the rise in
temperatures, but, as figure 2 indicates, even if GHG
emissions were to halt immediately, temperatures
would still rise by over 0.6°C in this century (IPCC,
2007). A scenario where sustainable energy use is
prioritized, temperatures are expected to rise by
1.8°C (range 1.1–2.9°C). A lower sustainability
scenario, on the other hand, will lead to a
temperature rise of 4.0°C (range 2.4–6.4°C), with a
greater probability of abrupt or irreversible problems.
Figure 2: Projected global temperature rise in the 21st
Century * . Source: IPCC, 2007 (In WHO, 2009).
As indicated in figure 2, either scenario will result in
net temperature increase. Hence, reducing GHG emissions will not reverse climate
change. This makes it absolutely essential to adapt to climate change, in order to
minimise its effects on people and economies.
2.2 Future Climate Projections for Rwanda
Climate model scenarios show future increases in mean annual temperature of up to
3.25°C by the end of the century. Changes in rainfall are more uncertain, though most of
the models show that rainfall will increase. These projections are based on downscaling
of global climate models to a single station in Rwanda (Kigali Airport); limited regional
climate modeling has
been carried out that
unique regional setting
Figure 3: Variation of
temperature and rainfall at
Kigali Airport Station.
* Projected temperature changes (relative to 1980-1999) in selected development scenarios, from lower emphasis on
sustainable development and cooperation (A2) to greater attention to environmental protection and regional integration
(B1). The orange line is the projection assuming GHG concentrations held constant at year 2000 values.
Figure 4. Projected changes in average monthly minimum temperature anomalies across nine GCM
models for period 2046-2065 (A2 scenario), statistically downscaled to Kigali. Climate Change
Explorer tool, Climate Systems Analysis Group and SEI, 2009.
Analysis of historical temperatures at Kigali indicates that minimum temperatures have
been rising faster than maximum temperatures, but with a general overall rise in
temperature particularly since 1992. All of the climate model scenarios show future
increases in mean annual temperature in future years. The CCE data, based on
downscaled data for Kigali’s airport station, reports an increase of average maximum
monthly temperatures of around 1.5 to 2.7 ºC (for a business as usual, no mitigation,
scenario) over the range of models by the 2050s (2046 -2065), with greatest warming
from July to September. The trends in monthly average minimum temperatures project a
rise of between 1.7 to 2.8 ºC for 2046-2065, with the most warming occurring in June to
Changes in precipitation are more uncertain. Although the intensity, frequency and
spatial distribution of precipitation are unknown, all the climate model scenarios show
that average rainfall regimes will change, ranging from positive and negative anomalies
across the models. The majority of the projections indicate that average annual rainfall
will actually increase, particularly in some seasons, indicating a potential strengthening
of the rains which is important in relation to flood risk. However, some models show
reductions in rainfall in some months. A shift in the timing of seasons is already being
reported in certain regions and this has a significant impact on agriculture. The range of
model results highlights the considerable uncertainty in predicting future changes and
the need to consider a robust approach to adaptation decision making to deal with
uncertain future climate scenarios.
Figure 5. Projected changes in average monthly precipitation anomalies across nine gcm models for
period 2046-2065. This is statistically downscaled to Kigali. Climate change explorer tool (Climate
Systems Analysis Group and SEI, 2009).
2.3 Climate Change Vulnerability in Environment and Natural Resources
Poorer countries and those that heavily depend on natural resources (agriculture,
tourism, mining and fishing) are the most at risk. According to FAO (2007), climate
change impacts on natural resources can be categorised into two groups:
i) Biophysical impacts, which include:
physiological effects on crops, pasture, forests and livestock;
changes in land, soil and water resources (quantity, quality);
increased weed, pest and disease challenges;
shifts in spatial and temporal distribution of impacts;
sea level rise, changes to ocean salinity;
Sea temperature rise causing fish to inhabit different ranges.
ii) Socio-economic impacts include:
decline in yields and production;
reduced marginal GDP from agriculture;
fluctuations in world market prices;
changes in geographical distribution of trade regimes;
increased number of people at risk of hunger and food insecurity;
migration and civil unrest.
Extreme climate-related events will result in serious repercussions for natural resources
Water will become increasingly scarce – both quantity and quality are in fact declining.
With climate change intensifying, water quality and quantity decline could affect various
social and economic development activities, including hydropower generation, water
supply and sanitation, and food security, all key aspects of the MDGs. Conflict over
water will escalate within and between communities, between sectors and across
international borders. Climate change is pressing more serious challenges for WRM
especially as rainfall predictability becomes difficult, and demand outstrips availability.
Forest and woody biomass resources: climate change effects on forest resources are
both positive and negative. Deforestation could escalate as more trees and woodlands are
converted into agricultural lands. But climate change also provides opportunity to
increase forest cover and shift from unsustainable forest and tree resource exploitation.
Loss of biodiversity: habitats depend mostly on stability of climatic conditions. Many
flora and fauna species, already threatened by increasing population and expanding
agriculture, will lose their unique habitats, which will affect their feeding and
Mining: The International Council of Mining and Metals has identified climate change
as “the most challenging environmental issue for the mining industry. The risks
associated with climate change go beyond compliance with local regulatory regimes
restricting carbon emissions and include supply chain risks (higher costs due to the
activities of suppliers); product and technology risks (failing to cope with new
technology standards); reputational risks related to sustainability concerns; physical
risks to operations due to extreme weather and litigation risks. The impacts of climate
change on mining mainly relates to:
‣ the energy and technologies used may cause pollution;
‣ geo-hazards are likely to increase thereby increasing concerns for mining safety,
quality and costs;
‣ mining design and technologies will need to be structured differently;
‣ assurance of economic returns and mining sustainability itself raise concerns.
Land resources: climate change impacts will affect land cover, land use and land
administration. Conversion of fragile areas such as steep hills, wetlands, protected
forests and dry lands into agricultural land might escalate.
3. Rwanda’s Vulnerability and National Response to Climate
What makes a country vulnerable to climate change The degree of populations’ and
economies’ vulnerability to extreme climate events will depend on their coping ability. Poorer
and natural resources-dependant countries like Rwanda, are the most vulnerable.
3.1 Overview of Climate Change in Rwanda
Recent events and meteorological data provide glaring evidence that climate change is
happening in Rwanda and that it will have disastrous effects. The 1997 floods and
prolonged drought of 2000 associated with El Nino and La Nina (MINITERE, 2006) are
some of the extreme climate change events that Rwanda has suffered recently. Over the
next century, annual temperatures in Rwanda are projected to be 1.0 °C to 2.0° C higher
(MINELA, 2010). Analysis of the mean annual
temperatures of Kigali Airport
Station (1971-2007) in Kigali city
and Kamembe in the Western
Province (figure 6) reveals
consistent temperature increase.
For Kigali, the average
temperature rise of 1.2°C from
19.8°C in 1971 to 21.0°C in 2009 is
worrisome. It exceeds 0.8°C reported
to have been caused by global
warming over a period of 150 years.
Figure 6: Mean Annual Temperature
Variability in ° C (1971-2007) at Kigali and Kamembe Stations.
Data Source: Mutabazi (2010). Assessment of Operational Framework related to Climate Change.
3.1.2.GHG Emissions and underlying Causes of Climate Change in Rwanda
A recent GHG emissions study concluded that the main GHGs in Rwanda were Co 2
(comprising 87% of all GHGs); Methane (CH4) accounting for 11.5% and nitrogene
hemioxide (N 2 O) which accounted for 2% of GHGs. The main sources of GHGs are:
Agriculture (which contributed 78%), Energy (17.8%), industrial processes (3%), wastes
(0.9%) and land use change and forestry (0.2%). The recent records indicate that
Rwanda’s total GHG emissions were 5,010.4Gg carbon equivalents and total absorption
was -8545Ggr. With a net national balance of -3534.6Ggr, Rwanda is a net sink. The
main concern, however is that while absorption increased by half (53%), the emissions
from biomass increased by 100% (from 2896.34 to 5793.45Gg). Furthermore, emissions
from agriculture increased by nearly 1.5 times. This is an issue of concern given that
agriculture is the biggest source of livelihoods and major contributor to growth. The low
increase in energy-related GHG emissions (under 10%) despite increased energy
consumption suggests that investments in cleaner energy alternatives are paying off.
3.2 Climate Change Impacts on Environment and Natural Resources
Extreme weather events (high temperatures, drought, floods, heavy erratic rains,
humidity) will have profound effect on Rwanda’s diverse natural resources and
dependant socioeconomic activities. The nature, timing and geographical extent of such
impacts will depend on the specific resource, location and institutional capacity. The
main impacts of climate change on Rwanda’s ENR sector are highlighted below.
3.2.1 Forest Resources
Forest resources and ecosystems play a unique and dominant role in climate
modification and in the management of climate change effects. Besides the absorption of
GHGs through carbon sequestration (mitigation), forest ecosystems moderate climate
and assure the provision of other ecosystem services – water, wood, biodiversity and
habitat protection, soil stabilization and runoff control; and serve as wind breakers.
Rwanda’s forest estate covers an area of 330,576 ha of which 215,739 ha (65%) are
natural forests and 114,837 ha (35%) are planted (MINIFOM, 2010). Other wooded
lands comprise about 222,520 Ha, bringing the total forested area to 553,098 ha (or 21%
of the land area). The GoR vision is to increase forest area to about 30%.
Climate change will escalate the scarcity of forest and biomass resources – such as
timber, construction materials, medicine and fuel wood, with a spiral effects on other
sectors like health, agriculture and land management. Further deforestation means the
resilience and ability of ecosystems to provide productive and climate-regulation
services will decline. Climate change impacts from deforestation include: intensification
of soil erosion, landslides, increased food insecurity and destruction of watersheds.
Climate change will impact forest protection. Direct impacts include changes in pest
development rates, survival, and reproduction. Indirectly, climate change may impact overall
pest population movements, host species susceptibility and distribution, and natural enemy
populations. These could profoundly affect forest protection and management.
Forest industries and forest-based livelihoods will be affected as forest productivity
declines and as the pressure to mitigate climate change increase. More forest estate may
be converted from production to protection thereby reducing the supply of forest
products. The climate change impact on resource availability is already profound, as
forest harvesting is now limited by legislation.
3.2.2 Water Resources
Rwanda’s water resources are influenced by precipitation and evaporation, as well as the
dense network of rivers, streams, wetlands and other catchments that recharge the water
reservoirs. Water resources become stressed as the effects of climate change become
more pronounced. Conflicts between human and environmental demands are likely to
intensify. Climate change will affect Rwanda’s ambitious plan to irrigate more than
100,000 Ha of land over the next 5 years, and undermine the plan to supply clean
drinking water to entire population by 2017, as water availability and quality decline.
3.2.3 Mining and Mineral Resources
Mining is emerging as a major source of foreign exchange for Rwanda. Returns from
mining increased from just US$ 5.09 million in 2003 to US$ 90.68 million in 2008
(MINIRENA, 2009a). However, mining in Rwanda faces potential threats from climate
change, and is particularly vulnerable given the rugged terrain, dominance by
smallholder mining entities and limited investment in modern technologies.
The suitability of existing mines for extreme weather conditions, especially on health
and safety, as well as ease of mining operations (optimum resource extraction and
processing), is low. Extreme climate conditions are likely to impact Rwanda’s mining
sub-sector in two ways:
i) Primary (or direct) impacts – including flooding, erosion, landslip, debris flows,
overflowing of waste ponds, hazards to human life, equipment, revenue and the
ii) Secondary (indirect or ‘knock-on’) effects include a shift in population centres or
changes in agriculture and water resources; local labour deficit created by communities
moving away from mine sites due to lack of water and/or energy, looming geological
disasters, excessive dust, noise, isolation after storms or threats of disease outbreaks.
Unreliable rainfall has caused many farmers to resort to marshlands which have a steady
water supply. This has the effect of reduced climate moderation ability, reduced water
flow for downstream users, fish production and ecosystem maintenance, among others.
Wetlands – some of the few remaining landscapes with freely flowing water - are now
under stress and destruction from agriculture and other productive activities. Climate
change will escalate the pressure on wetlands; compromise their productive and
regulatory role in ecosystems, recharging and purifying water; and endangered species.
Agriculture, hydro-power production and domestic water supply will be most affected.
3.2.5 Land Resources
Land management in Rwanda, already affected by high population pressure, will be
severely affected by climate change effects. Increased temperature, reduced soil
moisture and change in rainfall patterns will result in:
‣ changing soil characteristics which affects land productivity (e.g. reduced crop
yields). This could escalate pressure on wetlands for agriculture and settlements;
‣ loss of terrestrial biodiversity and increased risk of invasive species emergence;
‣ increase in desertification conditions especially in the drier plains of the eastern and
southern Rwanda with the consequence of reducing arable land. This could put more
pressure on critical ecosystems like wetlands and mountainous areas. It could also
increase conflict between wildlife and humans as wildlife protected areas’ carrying
capacity declines especially in the drier Akagera National Park. The livestock
economy that depends on rangelands will be severely affected.
‣ flooding of lowlands, with potential effect on settlements, internal migration and
food production problems. Flood plain production of rice, other cereals and
horticultural production will be most at risk, as will the emerging fish farming;
‣ increase in soil erosion and increased disaster risks related to land use especially in
the north and western province.
The vulnerability of the ENR sectors principally arise from the effects of climate change
on the productivity of ecosystems and the quality of the services provided. Table 1
summarises the mapping of major ecosystems that are vulnerable in Rwanda and the
main factors that explain their vulnerability to climate change.
Table 1: Ecosystems most vulnerable to climate Change Effects and Why
Ecosystem type Location Why they are vulnerable to climate change
2. Wetlands and
3. Dry land
Eastern and parts of
River and stream
systems run from
north to central
plateau and drain
into Eastern lakes
and Lake Kivu to the
Western and parts of
‣ they are under severe pressure from humans, as most Rwandans (75-
80%) depend on farming;
‣ population is increasing and rural settlement is fused with farming;
‣ these ecosystems are not clearly demarcated;
‣ They are not protected by legal provisions;
‣ Knowledge and information especially on agro-biodiversity, ecosystem
productivity and sustainable land management, are lacking;
Under intense pressure of agricultural exploitation. They are preferred
areas for horticultural & cereal production;
Pollution from agriculture, peat mining etc. as country moves to adapt to
climate change effects;
Threatened by expanding urbanization
‣ pressure of water shortages – most are downstream;
‣ Grazing and agro-pastoral transformation – farm clearing;
‣ They are the primary destination for new development and resettlement;
‣ Under pressure of pollution from upstream land degradation and
‣ Pollution from industrial, commercial, tourism and agricultural
‣ pressures of increased large scale water consumption – for irrigation,
urban water supply, (as human response to climate change increases)
‣ disturbance from human activities such as navigation and fishing
Mountain regions are already under stress from various human
activities, notably human settlements, overgrazing and inappropriate
land management, which have reduced their natural resilience to climate
Natural mountain ecosystems have shrunk and pristine afro-montane
habitats only remain in Nyungwe–Volcanoes Complex;
Mountain species tend to have a very limited capacity to move to higher
altitudes in response to warming temperatures. This is especially so for
3.3. Implications of climate change for Key ENR sector performance Indicators
Extreme weather events (especially arising from the now predictable increases in temperatures,
shorter and more intense rainfall) are likely to affect Rwanda’s progress in achieving ENR
targets, notably more than doubling receipts from mineral exports; rehabilitating degraded
ecosystems and land productivity; and reducing water pollution, among others. The likely
effects of climate change on the ENR sector and specific key indicators of the present ENR
sector strategy are summarized in table 2 and table 3 respectively.
Table 2: Implications of Climate-Change for the ENR sectors
1 Forestry &
Risks and associated impacts
Increased pressure on forest resources,
including protected natural forests is
anticipated; shortage of fuelwood may increase
pollution as people shift to low value biomass
like agricultural crop residues.
Increased risks related to extreme wealthier
events – e.g. landslide calls for public
investments in the hill areas’ lands, given the
huge positive externalities.
Opportunities for carbon marketing could be
2 Water resources Increased pressure on water resources, as
scarcity escalates and demand from various
sectors (energy, infrastructure, agriculture,
domestic use, etc,) increases.
Increased pollution of water resources would
result in further decline of water quality and
water supply disruptions.
Reduced availability of clean water for
drinking, cooking, hygiene and recreation
4 Wildlife and
Inappropriate land use change, as more
pressure from agriculture to expand into other
land use areas;
Carrying capacity and resilience of range lands
could decline, resulting in famine and poverty;
Increased conflict between human activities
and biodiversity conservation;
Increased internal migration causing pressures
on protected landscapes and destruction of
habitats and biodiversity hotspots;
Loss of biodiversity & genetic resources–
especially rare species, as their sensitive
habitats are lost.
Policy and management implications
Resource allocation for forest planning,
conservation and protection activities.
Diversion of resources to expand the forest
estate and rehabilitate degraded forests.
Costs of alternative energy.
Embracing REDD+ programmes to
leverage carbon funds to restore Rwanda’s
forest resources and sensitise the
population about forest extension.
Balancing food security with forest
extension, declining landholdings, while
carbon opportunities require big land area.
Managing inter-sectoral conflicts in water
resources management; leveraging carbon
trade opportunities to restore watersheds.
Greater costs of managing water resources;
trans-boundary governance concerns
Increased morbidity & mortality to waterrelated
Review land tenure security of farmers;
Sensitise the population and support them
to invest in sustainable land management
(SLM) practices including agro-forestry
Increased cost of conservation, reduced
revenue from biodiversity-based tourism
and crafts industry
Bio-security concerns and ability to meet
national obligations under the International
conventions related to biodiversity
5 Wetlands & Increased droughts will exacerbate the Trade-offs between food security and
pressure on wetlands for agricultural
production, reduce water levels and threaten
Wetlands’ ability to filter, hold and regulate
water flow will be reduced, extreme weather
events like erratic rains, floods and landslides
will be difficult to contain, causing further
human, social and economic losses.
6 Mining Increasing geo-hazards and risk of public
health, mine security and associated economic
High costs of adjustment, including equipment
and technology to adapt to the changing
wetlands conservation must be considered.
IMCE has provided a framework for policy
Investing in large scale aquatic ecosystems’
restoration will be critical, and GoR will
have to undertake painful resource
Economic costs related to human safety
guarantees; equipment redesign and
opening new mines will require new mining
Review the mineral certification process to
compel investors to pay attention to climate
change concerns; Include climate change in
Need to support the smallholder mining
activities which have limited adaptive
capacity; Need for more investment in
mining inspection and geo-physical surveys
to analyze climate-related hazard risks
Table 3: Potential Effects of climate change on key ENR Sector targets under EDPRS
Key performance indicator Indicator levels How Climate change might affect performance
1 Area of land protected to 8% 10% Climate change will reduce habitats for endangered species
maintain biological diversity
and increase pressure towards marginal lands. This could
undermine the GoR’s ability to realise biodiversity
2 Proportion of national forest
3 Proportion of watersheds
with known water quality
4 Total receipts from mineral
products exports (USD)
5 Area of erosion-prone land
that is protected through
22.1% 29% Forested area could increase if GHG mitigation efforts are
enhanced through afforestation. However, increased pressure
on forests and woodlands for energy could undermine the
ability to maintain a larger proportion of land under forests.
10% 50% Increased landslides and floods could undermine water quality
in most watersheds
$89 $120 Increased risks to mines and investment costs to mining
operations could reduce the returns and competitiveness of the
sector. Extreme weather events could affect the mineral
prospecting by OGMR and private sector.
Data Source: MINIRENA (2010) Joint Sector Review Report.
- 80% Intense rainfall will affect the terracing activities and increase
cost of maintaining the terraces; climate change will also
affect the national budget’s ability
3.4 National Response to Climate Change in Rwanda
The GoR appreciates the country’s vulnerability to climate change effects and the
opportunities to build national resilience through adaptation to climate change. Several
initiatives have been undertaken since 2002 when the GoR ratified the UNFCCC.
Recent climate change adaptation and mitigation actions in Rwanda include:
‣ Formulation of the National Climate change and low carbon growth strategy, to
guide climate-responsive long-term development investments;
‣ Rolling out a stakeholders training and sensitization programme on climate
change and its effects by REMA;
‣ The National Adaptation Plan of Action (NAPA) for climate change was prepared in
2003 in the context of the UNFCCC. A first National Communication Report was
submitted in 2006 and a report has been prepared. NAPA identified a number of
projects to be implemented and is guiding climate change investments.
‣ A guidance manual for integrated climate change aspects into the District
Development Plans (DDPs) has been developed by REMA to guide districts.
‣ Through collaboration with the Smith School of Enterprise and Environment
funded by DfID, national capacity for climate change impact modeling, sectorbased
climate change research and a climate observatory are being developed.
‣ Carbon marketing and clean development mechanism (CDM) projects: Rwanda
is beginning to attract carbon finance through carbon credit investors who are
setting up forest plantations and other CDM projects.
‣ Investing in sustainable land management (SLM) practices: several SLM projects
are being implemented with support from UNDP and other partners.
4. Opportunities and Entry points for Mainstreaming Climate
Change Adaptation and Mitigation in the ENR Sectors
“It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent,
but the one most responsive to change” Charles Darwin
4.1 Overview of the ENR Policy Processes in Rwanda
Natural resources and the environment are at the heart of Rwanda’s economic and social
development. ENR policies are designed and implemented in the context of the
country’s Vision 2020, the 7-year Government’s Political Plan (2010-2017), the
medium-term development strategies i.e. the EDPRS (2007-2012) and its successor
strategies. There is not a single ENR policy but specific sub-sectors have own policies.
Only the ENR strategy attempts to tie the various ENR policies together:
The National Forest Policy 2010 emphasizes private sector involvement, research
and knowledge generation, community participation, and promotion of nonconsumptive
ecosystem services provided by forests. Climate change mitigation
through the CDM is an important aspect of the new policy that was prepared
through a highly consultative process.
Water Resources Management Policy, 2010 advocates for integrated water
resources management and prioritises investment in climate change adaptation
through watershed protection, disaster risk reduction and water security
Mining Policy 2009 focuses on promoting private sector led-mining and mineral
exploration and value addition.
Decentralisation: all ENR policies promote decentralized service delivery
Policies. An important area to consider is how to mainstream climate change
adaptation into Local Performance Contracts (Imihigo).
4.2 Opportunities and Entry Points for CCMA Mainstreaming in the ENR Sectors
Opportunities for CCMA mainstreaming within the ENR policy processes exist in a
number of levels:
Policy objectives and programmes: the ENR strategy 2009-2014 identifies 8 strategic
priorities for delivering on poverty reduction and economic development, and dedicates
an entire Results Area on climate change. These strategic priorities are expounded in the
specific sub-sector policies and strategies. The opportunities to mainstream climate
change adaptation in each sub-sector are summarized in table 4.
Table 4: Summary of Climate Change Issues and Adaptation Opportunities within the
the ENR sector
2 Forestry subsector
5 ENR Sector
Key medium and long-term Strategic Opportunities & Actions for CCMA
‣ Rehabilitation of critical ecosystems Sensitise and train all Environmental
Professionals & practitioners (including
private EIA experts) in Climate change
issues and how to mainstream CCMA;
Provide information to agricultural and
environment extension workers.
Integrate climate change issues in the
Environment and natural resources training;
‣ Coordination of Climate change and Develop CDM projects; raise awareness of
international conventions programmes climate change issues across sectors and the
population; bridge the communication gap
‣ Scaling up the forest estate through
rehabilitation of degraded forests and
encouraging private land owners;
‣ Balancing conservation with food
security and other land use needs.
‣ Restoration of watersheds and other
‣ Balancing increasing water demand
from multi-sectoral sources, with core
conservation and climate change
‣ Strengthen the legal and regulatory
‣ Develop competitive investment and
fiscal policies for mining;
‣ Improve mining sector knowledge,
skills and practices;
‣ Raise productivity and increase
production from new mines;
‣ Diversify into new products and
‣ Strengthen institutional capacity for
policy coordination and monitoring
‣ service delivery: Skilled health staff &
robust institutional systems;
‣ Coordination & partnerships through
SWAp that facilitate integration &
cross-sectoral planning; financing
between climate change stakeholders.
Enhance public-private partnerships in
forest development through carbon
Strengthen local forestry extension systems.
Develop capacity for climate change
mitigation through water security
Invest in climate change and WRM
Undertake climate-change related disaster
risk analysis and communicate this to
investors and other stakeholders;
Organise training for all mining actors and
put in place public health and human safety
Subject mining operations to regular
environmental performance monitoring;
compel them to set emissions standards.
Include climate change adaptation measures
into the performance monitoring
frameworks for ENR-based institutions;
integrate adaptation targets in each
Ensure that sector planning processes use
information from other sectors, including
water, agriculture and infrastructure.
The Policy formulation and Strategic Planning Process: the policy objectives are
translated into results through the ENR sector strategic plan, sub-sector strategies of
environment, forestry, mining, IWRM, and the land sector strategic plan. These are
implemented through the Rwanda Natural Resources Authority (RNRA). The multifaceted
nature of climate change issues and complexity of climate-sensitive issues the
policy processes participatory and consultative. The recently adopted ENR sector SWAp
is an important mechanism to coordinate CCMA activities within and across the sector.
Policy Implementation: the ENR sector policy process is a set of cascaded sub-sector
policies which provide opportunities to create linkages and synergy. Opportunities for
CCMA mainstreaming exist at all levels in all sub-sectors, viz:
i) Budgeting, resource mobilization and public expenditure allocation: Climatesensitive
threats to ENR strategic outcomes (e.g. emergencies related to floods,
timeliness and interpretation of meteorological data, forest fires, etc) are less likely to
receive considerable budget support due to budget constraints. It is important to
integrate climate change response among the criteria for resource allocation; flag climate
change threats in resource mobilization, and demonstrate the need for adequate financing
of climate change adaptation activities in the ENR sector. Each Ministry or Agency
(including NGOs) should plan and budget for climate change.
ii) Implementation plans, activities and personnel: Action plans must be linked to
seasons and weather variability. Ensure that all actors in the ENR sector from ministries
and central Agencies to Districts and NGOs are trained and sufficiently tooled to detect
and address climate-related issues.
iii) Monitoring and evaluation: the ENR monitoring and reporting schedules and data
collection systems must include key climate change information and its links to specific
ENR sub-sectors. The ENR reporting system must include climate change adaptation
and mitigation as part of the performance indicators. All reporting entities need to share
information on how they are addressing climate change issues. This requires investing in
research and knowledge management, building partnerships with climate-related
institutions, and creating platforms for dissemination of the information generated.
4.3 Key Areas for CCMA mainstreaming in the ENR sector Processes
The main climate risks and typical adaptation measures are summarized in table 5.
Table 5: Some Adaptation Measures to Climate risks in the ENR Policy Implementation
(including laws &
Associated climate risk / threats
Institutional systems, plans and tools not
responsive to extreme climate conditions;
inadequate measures to respond to climate
Mining and WRM infrastructure are likely
to be affected by extreme weather
conditions, which could undermine their
performance and increase geo-hazard risks.
Knowledge & skills ENR sector planners and technocrats have
inadequate knowledge about effects of
climate change on ENR activities, and how
to respond to emergency and long-term
Review all subsector policies and laws and
incorporate climate change adaptation and
mitigation measures in all sectors; Integrate
Climate Disaster preparedness in all ENR
sector policies, strategies & budgets.
Make infrastructure designs climatesensitive;
ensure adequate mechanisms to
prevent effects of winds, floods, storms;
‣ Integrate climate change issues into all
planning and research activities;
‣ Regular training and continuous learning
‣ ENR databases and environmental
information systems should have clear
links with climate change impacts;
‣ Establish knowledge& Resource centres
Associated climate risk / threats
Budgets Budgeting for climate change within
domestic resources/ overreliance on
Budgeting from cross-sectoral climate
change adaptation activities in different
ministries is a challenge;
Budget cuts arising from poor economic
performance as a result of climate-related
disasters e.g. drought.
in all Ministries, Agencies and Districts;
‣ Provide climate change adaptation tools
to communities, NGOs, private sector
practitioners and community workers
‣ Incorporate climate change risk analysis
in MTEF preparations;
‣ Train ENR experts and policy makers to
mainstream climate-change into sector
plans and budgets
‣ Improve efficiency in budget execution
Some Adaptation measures for Natural Resources Management
1) Foster system-wide change through the removal of barriers to SLM focusing at the
‣ Encouraging economic and sectoral mainstreaming R&D policies
‣ Institutional reform, land tenure, land reform, land use regulations
‣ Training and capacity building
‣ Financial incentives, e.g. subsidies, tax credits, crop insurance
2) Cross focal area synergies and integrated ecosystem approach to SLM, e.g.
harmonizing planning procedure for improving coordination among line agencies
(NAPs, NAPA, CBSAP, other MEAs and local plans).
3) Promoting technological innovations and knowledge sharing
Land potential assessment, land use planning;
Information generation/access, early warning;
Integrated multifunction LU systems
adjustment of planting dates and crop variety; crop relocation;
improved land management, e.g. erosion control and soil protection through tree
4) Demonstrating and up-scaling successful SLM practices.
Technologies for creating multifunctional landscapes - E.g. agro-forestry will
enable smallholder farmers to cultivate food crops and grow multipurpose trees;
Radical terracing and hillside irrigation could reduce the risk of erosion and
landslides, and enabling marginal steep hills to be put under productive use;
Genetic engineering and biotechnologies are helping to create resistant species
and varieties, with potential to restore ecosystems and combat desertification
where climatic conditions have changed significantly.
In the forest sub-sector, climate change mitigation strategies include extending
carbon retention in harvested wood products, product substitution, and producing
biomass for bio-energy. This carbon is removed from the atmosphere and is available
to meet society’s needs for timber, fibre and energy. Biomass from forestry can
contribute 12-74 EJ/yr to energy consumption, with a mitigation potential of approx
0.4-4.4 GtCO2/yr † . But over the long-term, a sustainable forest management strategy
aimed at maintaining or increasing forest carbon stocks, while producing an annual
sustained yield of timber, fibre or energy from the forest, will generate the largest
sustained mitigation benefit.
† MCMILLAN BINCH MENDELSOHN (FEBRUARY, 2008).
5. Guidelines and Tools for Mainstreaming Climate Change
Adaptation and Mitigation in ENR Sectors
This Chapter reviews the rationale for climate change adaptation and presents some
actions and procedures to integrate climate change adaptation and mitigation into the
ENR sector policy processes. This has the double aim of reducing GHG emissions but
largely to adapt the sector processes, systems and outcomes to climate change effects.
5.1 Conceptual Model of Climate Vulnerability and Adaptation
Figure 7 below summarises the links between exposure to climate change and
vulnerability, justifying why focusing on adaptive capacity development can reduce
Exposure to extreme
Sensitivity of ENR sector to
Figure 7: Model for climate change vulnerability and adaptive capacity assessment‡
Simpson et al (2008) suggests that a typical adaptation strategy has 8 elements presented
graphically in figure 8.
Figure 8: Essential Elements of a Climate Change Adaptation Strategy
Risk management plans
Legislation & Enforcement
Information & Knowledge
Elements of a Climate Change
Financing Adaptation (e.g.
Linking with other planning
processes e.g. PSTA III
‡ Garnaut Climate Change Review, 2008.
5.2 Key Issues in CCMA Mainstreaming in the ENR Sector
A number of climate-sensitive issues must be considered in ENR sector’s adaptation
approaches. These are summarized below:
1. Resource-use efficiency must be factored in the ENR policy formulation and
implementation process. As climate change escalates, so will resource scarcity (water,
energy, grazing land), and the need to manage the pressures in managing scarce
resources with multi-sectoral interests, will have to be expressed right from the policy
level to community level. A key concern for climate change in the ENR sector is energy
use, which is at the centre of all development activities in Rwanda, and a key contributor
to GHG emissions. Forestry and biomass are the main sources of energy. A shift from
biomass as the main source of energy will reduce forest-based GHG emissions and
increase GHG sink (forest and tree cover). At community level, water use and
conservation will become important tools to fight against climate-sensitive diseases,
especially those related to food, water and hygiene.
2. Building the knowledge base will entail the awareness, knowledge and skills of all
actors in the ENR sector, including those in research and training institutions. This will
‣ Support for physical and socio-economic assessments, design of regional climate
change strategies, action plans and related products;
‣ Impact and vulnerability mapping, including community-based mapping;
‣ Provision of satellite imagery and models to support physical and economic
climate change impact assessments and scenarios;
‣ Training and skills development programmes;
‣ Develop knowledge tools and methodologies to facilitate integrated climate
change management planning;
‣ Documenting experiences from community driven activities (CDD), and using
these experiences to integrate local communities into the carbon markets.
3. Key cross-cutting issues: the links between climate change and gender; HIV/AIDS;
extreme poverty; and ICTs are often difficult to discern, yet they are critical to
developing effective adaptation measures, especially in the ENR sector. ICTs are
particularly important to build knowledge and ensure effective communication.
The main climate change adaptation mainstreaming issues to be considered are:
In WRM, significant steps are already being taken with a comprehensive sector strategy
and policy framework in place. However, strong coordination mechanisms to ensure
national water security and trans-boundary concerns will be needed.
Safety and public health considerations are critical concerns for the mining sector that
it still in nascent stages but with significant opportunities. Geophysical factors will be to
be continuously monitored as extreme events (e.g. heavy rains leading to landslides)
threaten to increase geo-hazards. A number of disasters that could be linked to climate
change, have already been reported yet the compliance audits for mining firms do not
cover climate change adaptation issues. All mining concessions should be reviewed to
incorporate provisions for climate change adaptation.
Wildlife and Biodiversity conservation must take into consideration the increasing
ecosystem stresses both within and outside protected areas, and focus climate change
adaptation interventions in areas and communities around protected areas. Communitywildlife
conflicts will be the main challenge around Rwanda’s parks and protected areas.
Central and local authorities will need support to prioritise climate change adaptation.
Addressing trans-boundary issues, and promoting green development. Provide
incentives to the private sector and business systems to identify business opportunities in
climate change adaptation and participate actively in climate change adaptation process.
5.3 Procedures and Approaches for CCMA Mainstreaming in ENR sector
The basic steps in CCMA mainstreaming in the health sector, are graphically presented
in figure 9, and discussed in proceeding text.
Figure 9: Procedures for CCMA Mainstreaming in the ENR Policy Process
ENR Policies and Strategies with
climate change adaptation
Information on climate change
conditions; links with natural
resource utilisation; degree of
exposure to climate risks; national
capacities & Vulnerabilities;
Opportunities, gaps & potential
barriers for adaptation; ENR
interventions identified and
incorporated into Policy & Strategic
alternatives Indicators & targets
incorporated in the ENR M&E,
DDPs & Imihigo
1. Conduct Climate Risk,
Impact & Vulnerability
2. Identify & Analyse a range of
options for Adaptation & Mitigation
3. Select Adaptation & Mitigation Actions
Maps & thematic data on land
cover, geo-physical environment
and socioeconomic development;
sensitive ecosystems and
threatened species/habitats; Data
on Hazard factors & historical
data (e.g. climate databases)
Climate-sensitive ENR policies &
Strategic alternatives; Climate
adaptation options incorporated into
the planned priorities and budgets
4. Prepare & Execute CCMA
CCMA Indicators & targets
incorporated in the ENR M&E,
DDPs & Imihigo Monitoring
Outcome reports used in Policy
Reviews e.g. ENR JSRs and reviews
of other climate sensitive sectors.
5. Monitor Progress in implementation
6. Evaluate the Performance &
Outcomes from CCMA Implementation
Step 1: Conduct Climate Change Impact and Vulnerability Assessment
Climate change Impact and Vulnerability Assessment is conducted to determine the
susceptibility of natural resources and ecosystems to extreme weather events, identify
analyse and determine the effectiveness of current responses. The assessment will
identify capacity needs; establish baseline climate conditions, potential barriers to
adaptation, opportunities and priorities for adaptation. A vulnerability Index map is the
main output. Its purpose is to serve as a basis for priority setting and planning.
Climate change Risk and Vulnerability Assessment for the ENR sector focuses on 4
Physical vulnerability to and influence on weather patterns;
Social vulnerability and community resilience e.g. loss of jobs as a result of mine
Economic vulnerability – direct costs are the returns (receipts) from forest
products and services, mineral exports; tourism receipts from biodiversity and
wildlife. Indirect costs relate to hydropower production (due to receding water),
agricultural production losses relating to drought, flood losses, soil productivity;
and other economic sectors that depend on the environment and natural resources.
Governance – institutional and policy framework.
A fundamental first task in the Climate change impact and vulnerability assessment is to
establish a clear understanding of climate change and how it affects the ENR sector
activities. Climate change involves multiple factors. Policy makers in the ENR sector
must decide which factors are more important and give them appropriate weights. This
helps determine the scope of the assessment. A summary of the logical steps in
conducting a Vulnerability Assessment in the ENR sector is presented in figure 10.
Figure 10: Logical flow of Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment in ENR.
Define the Problem/Assessment Objective
(E.g. To conduct climate change vulnerability of tree species diversity; habitats of endemic
fauna species, and natural forest-based livelihoods and economic activities)
Determine Scope of Assessment
Local/ regional/ national scale
ENR aspects/ indicators – species; habitats; land use/cover; utilization
Stakeholders & institutional roles; governance
Data requirements (spatial, statistical, qualitative data…)
Select & Test the Methodology
Climate change Scenario analysis
Stakeholders & institutional roles
Select Climate change Impact Scenarios
Climate change Scenario analysis
Stakeholders & institutional roles
Ecological – species loss
Physical - e.g. destruction of roads, bridges, meteorological stations
Economic - livelihoods, incomes.
Social resources e.g. cooperatives
Assess Copying strategies
Livelihoods & economic
Socio-economic(e.g. through Mutual insurance)
Cultural (Ubudehe, Umusanzu, cultural forests..)
Evaluate Adaptation & mitigation Strategies
-How effective have on-going interventions been Has the fundamental basis
changed E.g. the sector priorities Threat increased/shifted
- How can the existing adaptation process be improved
Examples of the tools used to conduct vulnerability assessment at the local level are
presented in table 6.
Table 6: Livelihoods Vulnerability to Climate Change Assessment Tool
Province …………………..; Agro-ecological zone …………………………….
Climate Change Impact
1 Drought Crop damage/ losses/failures Sell livestock to purchase food
Dig deeper wells for domestic water
2 Floods Damage to settlements Provide temporary shelter & water supply
Casual labour; food relief
Increase in diseases (notably Slash surrounding vegetation; Open ditches
malaria, Cholera, dysentery) to allow flow of stagnant water
3 Erratic/unreliable Destruction of property by
Flooding of mines
Look for temporary employment
4 Landslides Crop damage; loss of top soil Terrace the land; Agro-forestry; provide
temporary food relief to victims
Destruction of roads and housing
Step 2: Identify and Analyse Adaptation and Mitigation Options
Identify a range of policy options, programmes and activities for adaptation and
mitigation. Analyse the adaptation options on the basis of effectiveness, technical
feasibility and other criteria to select the most appropriate option. The options’ selection
will be as follows:
Gather and compile a short profile of potential choices. You may include existing,
new or even untried interventions;
Share with key stakeholders and brainstorm with relevant experts to get their
Subject the options to a set of criteria and rank them according to the preferences
of technical experts and stakeholders before briefing Policy Makers.
Table 7 provides some potential criteria for evaluating adaptation options.
Table 7: Potential Evaluation Criteria for Adaptation Options
1 Cost Costs to implement and maintain; cost sharing possibilities
2 Effectiveness Capacity to solve problems or realize opportunities derived from
climate change impacts (e.g., economic benefits, costs avoided, lives
3 Ease of implementation Potential legal, political, institutional, barriers
4 Acceptability to local
All stakeholder identified adaptations are attractive to some
stakeholders, but may not be equally attractive to all stakeholders for
political, economic, social or cultural reasons.
5 Acceptability to Financing
Are the financing agencies/ministries involved willing to support the
6 Endorsement by Experts Is the option consistent with international best practice
7 Timeframe Are short-term or long-term strategies more desirable; How does the
timeframe needed to implement the option compare with that available
(e.g., are there specific project or funding time horizons);
8 Institutional Capacity How much additional capacity building and knowledge transfer is
required to implement the adaptation
9 Size of Beneficiaries Group Does the adaptation provide small benefits to a large number of
stakeholders and people or large benefits to a small number
10 Potential Environmental or Are there possible adverse impacts on the environment or people (e.g.,
are additional GHG emissions likely)
11 Capacity to Sustain Over Once implemented, can the adaptation be successfully sustained
Source: Modified from USAID (2007):
At this stage, the options will be informed by the results of the Vulnerability Assessment
and the Policy priorities and existing programmes. The next step is to select one or a few
specific adaptation options for further design and implementation.
3: Identify and Cost Programmes and actions for climate change interventions
Effective response to climate change in ENR will require formulation and
implementation of emergency management policies and legislation, especially in
disaster-prone sub-sectors like mining, forests and protected areas (vulnerable to wild
fires). Table 8 outlines some key actions to mainstream adaptation and mitigation into
the ENR policy processes.
Table 8: Actions to Mainstream CCMA in various aspects of the ENR Policy Processes
Strategic action Specific actions Expected Results
Risk Assessment Undertake comprehensive assessments of the
risks of extreme weather variability on:
o Forest & land resources;
o Water & other aquatic resources;
o Biodiversity & ecosystems;
o Environmental governance.
Preparedness for and
response to ENR
Incorporate climate change issues into the
ENR management indicators and targets
Regulatory interventions to prevent or
reduce pollution of air, water and soil;
Formulate & implement emergency
management policies, legislation;
Emergency response and recovery plans;
Develop early warning systems for
effective resource monitoring;
Increase understanding of
vulnerability of national ENR
systems to climate change;
Ability of ENR sector processes
Identify basis for enhancing
resilience of ENR systems
Timely and evidence-based
decisions for effective
management of climate risks.
Reduce incidences of resource
scarcity or inequitable
distribution across geographical
and time seasonal scales
Effective and timely response to
climate-sensitive health problems
Strategic action Specific actions Expected Results
climate related Human resource development programmes
emergencies and for ENR planning and implementation,
including training and education;
Develop community-based climate risk
Provide information toolkits for risk
communication and localised emergency
Make infrastructure more resilience to
climate effects (e.g. mines, water supply,
Develop and implement a research agenda
with the following objectives: (i) to better
and comprehensively understanding of
climate change and effects on ENR plans;
and (ii) to generate and disseminate
knowledge on locally-appropriate
adaptation measures; c) develop capacity
for effective response.
Identify skills gaps; formulate &
implement a capacity building action plan;
Establish a national level climate-change
& ENR coordination mechanism.
Increase understanding of the
climate change impacts on
populations & ENR systems
Increase communication of
climate-risks within NAPAs,
NCs and National Policy
processes e.g. EDPRS.
National capacity for disaster
prediction and response
4. Design and Implement a sector-specific Adaptation/ Mitigation Plan
An implementation plan is prepared to guide the process of CCMA mainstreaming, and
to assist in allocating resources. The first task in the implementation process is to define
the stakeholder roles; determine resource requirements, and set timelines for specific
outputs. USAID (2007) suggests that a typical implementation plan for CCMA
mainstreaming will normally be developed with the following components:
Strategic plan outlining actions and timelines of involved stakeholders;
Capacity building needs assessment and training plan;
Financial / business plan covering expenditure needs and revenue sources;
Outreach / communication plan;
Plan for monitoring the performance of adaptations.
Adaptation plans cannot stand alone and must relate to other existing planning processes
and policies (‘mainstreaming’ adaptation).
Milestones and time frame are an important part of the adaptation plan.
Whilst mainstreaming climate change adaptation into the ENR sector policy process is a
long-term and continuous exercise, there are key time-bound milestones that must be
achieved with quick and immediate results while for others, results are expected over
longer periods. Table 9 summarized the key milestones, time frame and responsible
institutions in the implementation process.
Table 9: Key Milestones and Institutional Responsibilities in Climate Change
Adaptation in the ENR Sector
Key Task/Milestone Time frame Responsible
1 Conduct Climate change Impact & Vulnerability 6- 9 months MINIRENA; RNRA; REMA-Climate
Assessment for individual sub-sectors (mining,
forestry; terrestrial ecosystems; aquatic ecosystems;
water resources; land management)
2 Identify & Analyse Adaptation Actions 2-3 months MINIRENA, RNRA & sub-sector
3 Design costed Programmes for Climate Change
4 Design the Adaptation Plan and Mainstreaming 2-3 months RNRA; REMA & Sub-sector
5 Mobilise funds for mainstreaming climate change
adaptation and implementation of Adaptation actions
6 Raise Awareness of climate change issues within the
ENR stakeholders and communities
7 Train ENR sector actors on climate change
- MINIRENA through budget/donor
projects; REMA/Climate Financing
MINIRENA; REMA ; RNRA;
District Council; NGOs
15-24 MINIRENA; RNRA; REMA; District
adaptation at all levels
8 Develop District & Community level Adaptation 3-6 months District Authorities/ Director of
Infrastructure & Natural Resources;
Local Environment Committees
9 Design pilot adaptation actions at ecosystem, subwatershed
and community level
6-9 months RNRA; REMA; District Council
10 Implement the ENR climate change adaptation plan 60 months MINIRENA; RNRA; REMA
11 Monitor the mainstreaming process for climate
change adaptation in the ENR sector
60 months MINIRENA; RNRA; REMA;
12 Evaluate performance and Review the Adaptation
and Mitigation Process
3-6 months MINIRENA; RNRA; REMA
District Council (DDP & Imihigo
The adaptation and mitigation implementation plan will normally be based on the climate
change impact and vulnerability assessment and the kind of options to be implemented for
each sub-sector. The adaptation and mitigation plan will typically have the contents:
a. Potential effects of climate change on Rwanda (by province, district/ localities)
generally; Potential effect on the ENR sector (Draw from the Climate Change Impact &
b. Purpose of the Climate Change Adaptation implementation plan
c. How the plan has been developed (include stakeholder consultations and scientific
2. Scope and coverage of the plan and implementation process
a. What is covered by the implementation plan
b. Issues for implementation
c. Time frame for major actions and activities
3. Priority Activities and Actions
a. Activities and actions are needed to implement the adaptation and mitigation plan
b. Key barriers to implementation
will the mitigation and adaptation principles be implemented
4. Stakeholder Roles and Responsibilities and Coordination mechanisms
a. Which institutions/agencies/ organizations will do which actions
b. Linkages, Arrangements/ procedures for coordination and support
5. Resource Requirements and Resource Mobilization Strategies
a. Human and technical resources
c. Resource mobilization and capacity building
a. Key indicators and framework for monitoring
b. Integration with poverty reduction monitoring
a. Resource toolkits (Existing guidance documents and other materials)
b. Detailed logframe
c. Glossary of key terms/ Abbreviations
It is advised that each ENR sub-sector should have its own mitigation and adaptation
plan, because a sector-wide climate change response plan will be too complex and
ambiguous to allow effective priority setting and implementation.
5. Monitor the CCMA Implementation Process
Climate change adaptation and mitigation activities represent a long-term investment of
human, capital and financial resources. Outcomes and impacts are often felt over a long
span of time. Continuous monitoring is needed to optimize the outcomes, ensure that
adjustments are made to keep the actions relevant and focused. Several evaluation
criteria should be considered i.e.: cost, ease of implementation, extent to which expected
benefits are likely to be delivered; adverse impacts. The evaluation criteria and related
indicators should be selected and scored by stakeholders in a participatory way.
From the perspective of the ENR strategy 2009/10-2014/15 and attendant sub-sector
strategic plans, key climate change adaptation and mitigation indicators are summarized
in table 10 below.
Table 10: Key indicators for climate change adaptation and mitigation in the ENR sector
1 Equitable, sustainable and
productive management of land
2 Water resources managed in an
integrated, equitable and sustainable
3 Forest and biomass resources
developed and sustainably managed
4 Mineral resources sustainably
5 Environmental issues mainstreamed
into policies, plans, budgets and
activities for public and non public
6 Critical Ecosystems rehabilitated
and protected to enhance
conservation and sustainable
utilisation of biodiversity
7 Institutional capacity for ENR
Key climate change adaptation indicators in the ENR sector
% of farmers with knowledge of climate change adaptation
Proportion of land that is managed under climate-sensitive
• No. of climate change related water disasters recorded annually;
• Proportion of households in water-stressed districts with water
harvesting and storage facilities;
Proportion of national land area planted with forests;
Proportion of public and private sector investments set aside for climate
change adaptation and mitigation activities;
Incidences of climate change-related disasters in mining activities;
Proportion of non ENR financing set aside for climate change
Proportion of rural and urban population (aged 15 years +) with
knowledge of climate change effects and adaptation measures
Incidences of climate-related disasters in major watersheds;
Proportion of sector budgets set aside for climate change adaptation
activities, including climate-related research;
Proportion of ENR-related institutions including CSOs, reporting on
climate change activities within the Sector and Thematic Working
Groups and Joint Sector Reviews
6. Evaluate performance and Review the Adaptation and Mitigation
How do we know that the adaptation measures proposed/ implemented have assisted to
climate-proof the ENR sector The most common way is to conduct regular review of
the interventions and subjecting the ENR sector processes (including sub-sector
performance reviews) to a climate change check. Specific climate change adaptation
indicators should be included in the sector performance evaluation and reporting process
– from policy level down to community level. All ENR JSRs should include progress on
climate change adaptation for each sub-sector. The adaptation strategies or actions might
then be refined or new ones adopted, depending on the results.
5.4 Stakeholder Participation and Institutional Roles in Climate Change
Climate change adaptation is a multifaceted process spanning various stakeholders. All
stakeholders, including sector ministries, development partners, private sector and
individual citizens, have a role to play in climate-proofing the ENR sector. The key
institutions and their roles in mainstreaming climate change mitigation and adaptation in
the ENR sector are summarized in table 11.
Table 11: Key Stakeholders and their roles in the Health sector climate change adaptation
Public Sector institutions
1 Ministry of Natural
Integrate climate change adaptation into ENR policies and strategies
Review ENR performance indicators and monitoring frameworks to integrate
climate change adaptation and mitigation actions and targets;
Enhance cross-sectoral coordination of climate change adaptation activities.
Mobilise funding for climate change mitigation and adaptation in cooperation
with MINIRENA and RNRA
2 REMA Provide technical guidance and tools for climate change adaptation and
Build capacity of ENR institutions in climate change adaptation and
mitigation, through sensitization training and materials support;
Monitor the implementation of ENR policies and strategies to ensure that
climate change effects are minimized;
Support mobilise of funds for climate change adaptation and mitigation;
3 Ministry of Finance and
4 Ministry of
5 Rwanda Meteorological
Integrate climate change adaptation , budgets and operational plans;
Conduct climate change adaptation training & awareness for local government
and civil society actors at district and local levels;
Mobilise funding for climate change adaptation in cooperation with
MINIRENA and REMA
Integrate climate change adaptation within the national budgeting and public
finance management processes;
Work with MINIRENA and sector ministries to mobilize external funding for
climate change adaptation;
Monitor and ensure that climate change adaptation activities are prioritized
within the ENR sector.
Integrate climate change adaptation into the ENR infrastructure design and
maintenance policies, especially water supply, energy, mining and
meteorology which have major implications on the use of natural resources;
Establish weather monitoring infrastructure in major ENR management areas,
including forests, protected areas; water resources monitoring centres;
Provide appropriate and timely climate data/information to ENR management
institutions to facilitate climate change adaptation activities
6 Ministry of Education Integrate climate change adaptation into training curriculum for
undergraduate and graduate courses for agricultural,
biological/environmental, agricultural; basic and applied sciences;
Develop and implement a research programme on climate change adaptation
and mitigation activities in Rwanda’s ecosystems
Integrate climate change adaptation activities into water supply systems;
Develop and implement sensitisatioon programme on efficient water use and
climate change management for its domestic and commercial clients
7 District Authorities Mobilise communities and sensitise them on climate change effects on access
to and the quality of natural resources;
Integrate climate change adaptation into the District Development Plans and
Develop and implement climate change adaptation micro-projects at the
Monitor and report on national climate change adaptation programmes for
ENR within their districts.
8 Non state actors
9 Private sector
supply agencies, forest
Develop climate change awareness toolkits for their staff and clients and
Invest in climate change adaptation/ mitigation projects and integrated
climate change management within their business plans.
Generate and disseminate climate change adaptation information and support
‣ Mobilize and sensitise community members and leaders about climate change
and their effects on various ENR components;
‣ Develop and implement community projects for climate change adaptation
and mitigation such as watershed restoration;
‣ Mobilise financing for climate change adaptation actions at community level;
‣ Integrate climate change adaptation issues into CSOs’ strategies and plans for
sustainable ENR management.
‣ Build capacity of local development actors working on ENR activities in
climate change adaptation.
‣ Incorporate climate change adaptation into ENR sector financing guidelines/
‣ Provide grant financing for climate risk assessment and climate change
adaptation in all ENR-related projects;
5.5 Major Challenges to climate change adaptation in the ENR sector
The ENR sector faces a number of challenges in adapting to climate change:
1) Competing land uses and claims on the land as population increases and
development needs expand will constrain the adaptation and mitigation process.
Rwanda is rolling out large scale programmes in agriculture for food security and
export; urbanization and infrastructure development; afforestation for carbon
trading, and bio-fuels production, among others.
2) Human resource capacities: the ENR sector is faced with major challenges of
retaining highly trained professionals – especially in forestry, water and mining.
This limits the sector’s ability to conceptualise and implement climate change
3) Availability of appropriate, reliable data: High-resolution meteorological,
biophysical and socioeconomic datasets are needed to assess vulnerability risks
and evaluate adaptation models, but are often lacking. Where is unpredictable
risk, it may result in crop failure; accurate estimations of land use emission of
GHGs, and inadequate response to climate change.
4) Complex climate regimes: Rwanda has high climate variability and extremes.
This means that not a single climate-ENR response model or programme
approach will work, and a multi-pronged framework is needed. For instance,
afforestation activities in the eastern savanna will be different from those in the
high altitude zones.
5) Coordination of climate change adaptation mechanisms across sectors is further
complicated by the structure of the sector as well as institutional linkages.
Inadequate intra- and inter-sectoral platforms for shared planning and
collaboration impose more challenges.
6) Financing limitations constrain investments in vulnerability, risk monitoring and
risk reduction, which are fundamental aspects of adaptation.
5.6 Specific Actions for Effective Climate Change Adaptation in the ENR
In order to overcome the challenges to adaptation and ensure effective response, the
ENR sector will have to undertake the following:
1. Build capacity - starting with awareness raising and information gathering:
Integrating climate change considerations into the policy process implies radical policy
reform, and this change cannot even start – later on be sustained - unless there are basic
human resources and institutional capacity at all levels. The first major step in building
capacity is assessing the gaps in information, knowledge and skills. Capacity
development will entail skills enhancement to collect, analyse and report on ENR
activities and how climate change adaptation is impacting sector performance; utilize the
research information to foster learning and innovation within the planning process.
2. Mobilise adequate financing: There are a number of climate financing arrangements,
within and without the UNFCCC framework. The Clean Development Mechanism
(CDM) is one of these, and REMA is implementing a project in this regard. Several
organizations have also established Climate Change Funds that can be accessed through
bilateral and multilateral arrangements.
3. Build Climate Change into National Legislation: Policies, strategies and plans
remain proposals – only actionable when resources are available or policy priorities are
not changed substantially. To enlist stakeholders’ commitment and ensure that climate
change mainstreaming is effectively implemented, there is need to build the adaptation
actions into the legal frameworks – from sectoral laws to local government regulations.
This will compel central and Local Governments and NGOs to integrate CCMA
activities into their plans, budgets and implementation frameworks.
4. Include Climate change indicators into the ENR sector monitoring framework: The
ENR sector has adopted a Sector-wide approach (SWAP) to programming, resource
mobilization and implementation. The Paris Declaration commits donors to harmonise
their development support and align with Government priorities. The beneficiary
Governments in turn have to make their priorities and financial requirements clear, and
both agree to a set of development targets with indicators against which performance is
monitored. If it isn’t in the indicators, it’s not a priority and if it is not a priority, most
likely it won’t get funded. Sector planners, Policy makers will have to ensure that
climate-change related indicators are included in the ENR sector performance
monitoring frameworks. These indicators should be tracked from CPAF down to Subsector
strategic plans and in DDPs and Imihigo.
5. Lobby other sectors to address climate change concerns: Climate change effects
have complex and cross-sectoral implications. As the primary sector, the climate change
impacts in the ENR sector result from pressures imposed by dependant sectors – such as
agriculture, energy, industrial development, tourism, etc. It is important that the ENR
actors critically analyse the climate change impact, clarify the links with other sectors,
and mobilize respective actors to address them in a concerned and coordinated way.
Without cross-sectoral thinking, it is difficult to fully understand climate change effects.
6. Participate actively in climate change negotiations including funding mobilisation
The ENR sector is taking the lead in Rwanda’s effort to develop climate change
response capabilities, by participating actively in the international climate change
negotiations and in building national awareness and planning capabilities. This will be
better achieved by developing targeted national policies and strategies for planning,
resource mobilization, implementation and communication. At the moment, this task is
being undertaken in a few sub-sectors and through a few financing arrangements. Interdisciplinary
national capacity for climate change negotiations and response is needed.
7. Assess/ Evaluate Adaptation Actions: How do you get to know that the adaptation
actions being undertaken are making a difference in terms of strengthening resilience
How do you know that the most vulnerable groups are being cushioned from climate
change effects By assessing the likely impact before and evaluating the performance of
adaptation approaches and actions regularly.
8. Work at scale: Climate change effects occur at wider scale but their impact is largely
local – depending on the specific vulnerabilities and adaptive capacities. There must be
efforts to facilitate convergence of plans with local actions. Climate change CDD
projects that work well at local levels can only create the needed impact is scaled up.
9. Develop and sustain an effective communication and knowledge sharing network:
Awareness messages and sensitization activities tend to take place when disasters have
stricken and rarely before they happen. A more effective approach is to make
communication an integral and continuous process so as to build community knowledge
and resilience. A framework for Adaptation and Mitigation is summarized in figure 11.
Figure 11: Logical flow of the Key actions for local level climate adaptation and mitigation
M&E and Reporting
(Key indicators in
Assess carbon foot print
(inventory of carbon
Identify & prioritise local
alternative practices &
actions for climate
Integrate in Programme
design, M&E activities
(including Imihigo & DDP
The basic tools for local and community level climate change vulnerability assessment,
and integration of mitigation measures into local plans, are included as Annex 3.
Effective climate change mainstreaming must be based on a number of principles:
1) Adaptation must be placed in the general development context: Climate change
mainstreaming must happen within the broader national context of sustainable
development and must consider impact on cross-sectoral activities. Greater attention
should be paid to agriculture, water supply, infrastructure, tourism and energy
developments which depend heavily on natural resources.
2) Build on current adaptive experience: In the water sector, for example, there is need
to popularize water harvesting and put in place a national mechanism for water security.
Detailed assessment of the coping mechanisms need to be undertaken to establish the
basis for adaptation (see table 5). All stakeholders should be involved in the adaptation
process, to tap into diverse climate change experiences and expertise.
3) Recognise that adaptation occurs at different levels and is most important at the
local level: Climate change adaptation should permeate through from the policy level
down to household levels, where the consequences of inaction are most felt.
4) Recognise that adaptation is an ongoing process: Adaptation is an iterative process
of implementing and evaluating strategies as conditions evolve and as new knowledge is
King, Peter, N (2010). Mainstreaming Climate Change – a Guidance Manual for the
Pacific Islands Countries and Territories
MINELA (2010). Second National Communication under the United Nations
Convention on Climate Change. Kigali, December 2010.
MINELA (2009). Five Year Strategic Plan for the Environment and Natural Resources Sector.
Republic of Rwanda.
MINELA/ REMA (2009). Five- Year Strategic Plan for the Environment Sub-sector.
MINIFOM (2010). National Forestry Policy, 2010. Ministry of Forestry and Mines.
MINELA (2009). National Mining Policy for Rwanda.
http://www.ogmr.minirena.gov.rw/mining%20policy.pdf. Rwanda Mining Policy, 2009.
Mutabazi, A. (2010). Assessment of Operational Framework related to Climate Change.
Simpson, M.C., Gössling, S., Scott, D., Hall, C.M. and Gladin, E. (2008) Climate
Change Adaptation and Mitigation in the Tourism Sector: Frameworks, Tools and
Practices. UNEP, University of Oxford, UNWTO, WMO: Paris, France.
USAID (2007). Adapting to Climate Variability and Change: A Guidance Manual for
Development Planning. US Agency for International Development, Washington.
http://www.ias.ac.in/currsci/jun252006/1610.pdf. Indian perspective
change and Water Resources: A Prima for Municipal Water Providers.
THE CLIMATE CHANGE MITIGATION AND
ADAPTATION I KIT
Annex 1: Vulnerability Assessment Tools
Annex 2: Climate Vulnerability Assessment and Adaptation Tools at the Local level
Annex 3: Definition of Key terms in Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation
Annex 1. Matrix of Simple tools for Climate Change Impact and Vulnerability
STEP MAIN TOOL(S) PARTICIPANTS KEY OUTCOME
1. Screen project activities for climate
risk – using a summary of climate trends,
forecasts and impacts undertake a
preliminary assessment of whether climate
variability and change could impact the
effectiveness, longevity and integrity of the
2. Decide on the CVA pathway – decide
whether to follow the CVA pathway, taking
into account any existing risk management
practices, human and financial resources,
donor conditions and the local context.
3. Identify adaptation measures – work
closely with implementation partners, local
decision makers and stakeholders to identify
potential adaptation options to climate
change risks and opportunities for
strengthening adaptive capacity.
4. Prioritize adaptation measures to
address vulnerabilities in Step 1 – consider
project timeframe, budget, and technical
requirements of implementing different
5. Select adaptation options for
implementation – from step 4, select which
options will be implemented; develop local
ownership of the process and agreed
6. Implement adaptation measures –
actively engage stakeholders and partners,
build capacity, and monitor and adapt the
project according to any new conditions that
7. Evaluate adaptation and the CVA
pathway – determine whether the
project/programme delivers the intended
benefits and/or causes any adverse
Adapted from Huxtable & Yen (2009):
Assess climate risk Programme and
Checklist – should the
CVA pathway be
and Capacity Analysis
Resource table on best
Stakeholder workshop Project officers,
Adaptation measures Project officers,
Checklist – evaluating Programme and
A detailed table of the main
climate change impacts that
will affect project activities
List of projects that need to
progress through the
remaining steps of the CVA
List of potential adaptation
measures for reducing
climate risk and
List of criteria for
determining benefits and
feasibility of adaptation
measures; list of adaptation
measures ranked in order of
selected by the community,
along with community
support and consensus.
adaptation measures are
Organisational sharing and
learning and applied case
studies. Lessons learned to
inform future project
Annex 2: Climate Vulnerability Assessment and Adaptation Tools at the Local level
Annex 2A: Basic Steps in Local climate
Basic step/ Broad action
1 Climate change risk screening
2 Identification & Analysis of
Adaptation and Response
3 Verification, Analysis and
Selection of Appropriate
5 Review / Performance evaluation
Annex 2B: Climate Vulnerability Assessment
Incidences of Extreme climate
Events and impact on ENR
Sector ……………… District …………..
Likelihood of occurance Frequency
during the period (year)
Impact on specific
ENR issues (e.g.
H M L H M L H M L
5 Involuntary displacement
Annex 2D: Building Local capacity for Climate change Adaptation and Mitigation
3 Participatory tools
design and testing
5 Review /
Annex 3: Definition of Key terms in Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation
Adaptation: action or adjustment taken by society in response to the actual or potential
impacts of predicted climate change, which moderates harm or exploits beneficial
Climate: Climate in a narrow sense is usually defined as the “average weather” or more
rigorously as the statistical description in terms of the mean and variability of relevant
quantities over a period of time ranging from months to thousands or millions of years. The
classical period is 30 years, as defined by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).
These relevant quantities are most often surface variables such as temperature, precipitation,
and wind. Climate in a wider sense is the state, including a statistical description, of the
Climate change: Climate change refers to a statistically significant variation in either the
mean state of the climate or in its variability, persisting for an extended period (typically
decades or longer). Climate change may be due to natural internal processes or external
forces, or to persistent anthropogenic changes in the composition of the atmosphere or in
land use. Note that the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change
(UNFCCC), in its Article 1, defines “climate change” as: “a change of climate which is
attributed directly or indirectly to human activity that alters the composition of the global
atmosphere and which is in addition to natural climate variability observed over comparable
time periods.” The UNFCCC thus makes a distinction between “climate change” attributable
to human activities altering the atmospheric composition, and “climate variability”
attributable to natural causes. See also climate variability.
Climate system: The climate system is the highly complex system consisting of five major
components: the atmosphere, the hydrosphere, the cryosphere, the land surface and the
biosphere, and the interactions between them. The climate system evolves in time under the
influence of its own internal dynamics and because of external forces such as volcanic
eruptions, solar variations, and human-induced forces such as changing composition of the
atmosphere and land-use change.
Climate variability: Climate variability refers to variations in the mean state and other
statistics (such as standard deviations, the occurrence of extremes, etc.) of the climate on all
temporal and spatial scales beyond that of individual weather events. Variability may be
due to natural internal processes within the climate system (internal variability), or to
variations in natural or anthropogenic external forces (external variability). See also climate
Impacts of Climate change: Impacts of Climate change are consequences of climate
change on natural and human systems. Depending on the consideration of adaptation, one
can distinguish between potential impacts and residual impacts. Potential impacts: All
impacts that may occur given a projected change in climate, without considering adaptation.
Residual impacts: The impacts of climate change that would occur after adaptation.
Climate proofing: actions taken to protect infrastructure, systems and processes against
projected climate impacts for a period into the future.
Greenhouse effect: the result of certain gases in the atmosphere (so-called greenhouse
gases) absorbing energy that is radiated from the Earth’s surface, and so warming the
Greenhouse gas: a number of anthropologically produced and naturally occurring gases
whose presence in the atmosphere traps energy radiated by the Earth. This property causes
the greenhouse effect. Water vapour (H2O), carbon dioxide (CO2), nitrous oxide (N2O),
methane (CH4), and ozone (O3) are the primary greenhouse gases in the Earth's atmosphere.
Informative: where it is inappropriate for local planning authorities to impose conditions or
negotiate planning obligations, but where the local planning authorities considers that the
developer should be made aware of certain matters, it is possible for them to attach a short
statement known as an informative to any consent for planning permission.
Limited or low regret options: options for which the implementation costs are low while,
bearing in mind the uncertainties with future climate change projections, the benefits under
future climate change may potentially be large.
Mitigation: activities which seek to reduce the human effects on global warming by
reducing the quantity of greenhouse gases released to the atmosphere.
Precautionary approach/principle: a principle which states that where there are threats of
serious or irreversible damage, lack of scientific certainty shall not be used as a reason for
postponing cost-effective measures to prevent environmental degradation. This approach is
promoted by the UNFCCC to help “achieve stabilisation of greenhouse gas concentrations
in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous man–made interference with the
Sequestration: the process of increasing the carbon content of a carbon reservoir other than
the atmosphere. Biological approaches to sequestration include direct removal of carbon
dioxide from the atmosphere through land-use change, afforestation, reforestation and
practices that enhance soil carbon in agriculture. Physical approaches include separation and
disposal of carbon dioxide from flue gases and long-term storage underground.
Sink: any process, activity or mechanism that removes a greenhouse gas from the
Sustainable development: development which meets the needs of the present without
compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. Sustainable
development tries to reconcile the needs of social and economic development with
ecological conservation and environmental protection.
Sustainable Land Management refers to the use of land resources (soils, water, animals
and plants) for the production of goods and services to meet changing human needs – while
assuring the future productive potential of these resources, as well as maintenance of their