AF funded project in Rwanda implemented by the Rwanda Ministry of Environment aims to increase the adaptive capacity of natural systems and rural communities living in exposed areas of North Western Rwanda to climate change impacts through an integrated natural resource management and alternative livelihoods programme. (Photo by AF)
Adaptation Fund Year in Review: 2020 Key Highlights and Accomplishments
Against the backdrop of the global COVID-19 pandemic, 2020 brought new challenges for vulnerable societies in developing countries that were already hit hard by climate change. The Adaptation Fund has been there since the onset of the pandemic, providing immediate responses by taking measures to help build resilience, giving flexibility to projects to adapt directly during the pandemic, making decisions on funding new concrete projects, and expanding and offering new grant funding windows focused on scaling up effective projects, fostering learning and innovation in adaptation to keep pace with high demand. Many Fund projects have adapted directly to continue to build resilience in creative and safe ways during the pandemic. It was also the first climate fund to hold a virtual Board meeting and approve projects virtually amid the pandemic, and has adapted to continue to deliver to the most vulnerable, and provide virtual project visits, knowledge products, online trainings, webinars and other resources.
The Fund also continued to help vulnerable countries build capacity to adapt through its Readiness and Accreditation programmes through virtual country exchanges and the approval of several new implementing entities with the capability to identify, develop and implement effective adaptation projects across the globe. Of the Fund’s 32 national implementing entities (NIEs) accredited under its pioneering Direct Access modality that builds country ownership in adaptation, half are in LDCs or SIDS, reflecting its focus on the most vulnerable to climate change.
In addition, the Technical Evaluation Reference Group of the Adaptation Fund (AF-TERG) has grown and is working continually to advance independent evaluations of the Fund’s work to further enhance its effectiveness.
The Adaptation Fund reached 114 concrete adaptation projects on the ground after new approvals during the year, and also continued to expand its offerings by implementing new tools and grants to help meet the growing urgency of climate change and record demand for its work. Through its Innovation Facility, the Fund’s Board approved a window for large innovation grants in October and launched a new small grants programme (Adaptation Fund Climate Innovation Accelerator) in November that offers innovation grants to a diverse range of stakeholders, including community groups, entrepreneurs and young innovators. It also approved a dedicated funding window for Enhanced Direct Access, which builds on Direct Access by empowering NIEs to directly identify and fund local adaptation projects.
Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the Fund continued helping the most vulnerable communities in developing countries across the globe to adapt and build resilience to climate change. Many Fund projects directly adapted to the pandemic by providing immediate responses to vulnerable communities and building broader resilience to climate change as well as environmental, health and economic risks. It held its first virtual project visit to Costa Rica in August, reaching many local partners and beneficiaries across the country. It then held a virtual Country Exchange in December in Senegal with several NIEs sharing successes and knowledge in coastal zone management. It included the use of drone video footage to highlight the successes of the Senegal project on the ground.
The Fund concluded 2020 on a high note in December, by successfully raising US$ 116 million in new pledges to coincide with the 5th anniversary of the Paris Agreement. It will help the Fund respond to increased adaptation funding needs among developing countries and build broader resilience in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. Reflecting the urgency of adaptation finance, the Board received a record high in new proposals for its June review period, and in November raised its annual resource mobilization target for 2020 and 2021 by a third, to US$ 120 million. A growing diverse range of contributors are coming forward, recognizing its effective work on the ground for the most vulnerable — with 22 governments to date having pledged support to the Fund.
Adaptation Fund Top News Stories
Adaptation Fund Raises Nearly US$ 116 Million in New Pledges for Adaptation Action in Most Vulnerable Countries
Adaptation Fund Accelerates Climate Responses through its Pillars of Action, Innovation, and Learning and Sharing
USD 10 Million to Foster Innovation of Adaptation Practices in Vulnerable Countries Now Available to Diverse Group of Potential Recipients
Adaptation Fund Board Approves Additional Funding Windows to Provide New Adaptation Opportunities for Vulnerable Countries
New Adaptation Fund Study Showcases Effective Locally-Led Actions On the Ground
Adaptation Fund’s First Virtual Project Visit a Success
Adaptation Fund Projects Build Climate Resilience While Promoting Sustainable Development
Hill Women of India’s Himalayas Chart Path in Fight against COVID-19 Impacts for Isolated Communities
Adaptation Fund Board Chair Aims to Build on AF Achievements, Expand AF Revenue Sources and Country Funding Opportunities
Notification to National, Regional and Multilateral Implementing Entities of the Adaptation Fund in relation to COVID-19 outbreak
March 2020 – As most countries around the world have been impacted by the current outbreak of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), it has caused multiple and unpredictable challenges. We are all feeling the effects of this situation and doing our best to ensure smooth conduct of our operations. Read more
Tweets of the Year
Top Media Stories
State of Climate Services 2020 Report: Move from Early Warnings to Early Action
Climate change adaptation projects continue amid coronavirus pandemic
Ecosystem-based adaptation project reduces flood risk in Seychelles
From Communities to Healthcare Workers
[VIDEO] Adaptation Fund- Serving the Paris Agreement through action, innovation and learning
December 2020 – The video showcases key achievements of the Adaptation Fund in the context of serving the Paris Agreement based on the Fund’s strategic vision of enhancing adaptation action, innovation and learning. Watch video
[PODCAST] Building Climate Resilience: Readiness and Capacity Building
October 2020 – Mr. Farayi Madziwa, Coordinator of the AF’s Climate Finance Readiness Programme, talks about the importance of Readiness in adaptation and how the AF’s Readiness Programme has supported the most vulnerable communities through a variety of activities and tools. He also discusses how the Fund’s Readiness Programme has adapted to working during the COVID-19 pandemic to continue to deliver support to countries and NIEs. Listen to podcast
September 2020 – The COVID-19 crisis hit vulnerable societies in developing countries that were already hit hard by climate change. Mr. Mikko Ollikainen, Manager of the Adaptation Fund, talks about how Adaptation Fund projects respond to COVID-19 challenges by adapting directly to help with the crisis while building resilience to climate change, as well as environmental, health and economic challenges. Watch video.
July 2020 – Today’s emerging health challenges are rooted in our relationship with nature. Adaptation Fund projects employ nature-based solutions to help vulnerable communities adapt to the impacts of climate change. Nature based climate change resilience is also resilience to today’s environmental, health and economic challenges. Watch video
[PODCAST] Building Climate Resilience: Adapting in Time of Pandemic
[VIDEO] Take Flight to View Adaptation Fund Projects Across Globe
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