In a previous AF-funded project in Pakistan, vulnerable communities built bridges, enhanced early warning systems and cleared disaster evacuation routes for faster egress to build resilience against glacial lake outburst floods. The project was later scaled up by GCF. (Photo by UNDP)
World Meteorological Organization (WMO), October 13, 2020
State of Climate Services 2020 Report: Move from Early Warnings to Early Action
Extreme weather and climate events have increased in frequency, intensity and severity as result of climate change and hit vulnerable communities disproportionately hard. Yet one in three people are still not adequately covered by early warning systems, according to the 2020 State of Climate Services report released on the International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction on 13 October, 2020.
The report, produced by 16 international agencies including the Adaptation Fund and other financing institutions, identifies where and how governments can invest in effective early warning systems that strengthen countries’ resilience to multiple weather, climate and water-related hazards and provides successful examples.
The report includes 16 different case studies on successful early warning systems for climate hazards including tropical cyclones and hurricanes, floods, droughts, heatwaves, forest fires, sand and dust storms, desert locusts, severe winters and glacial lake outbursts. The Adaptation Fund’s project in Northern Pakistan that reduced risks from glacial lake outburst floods (GLOFs) and snow-melt flash floods in vulnerable Himalayan communities was highlighted.
The project enhanced capabilities of national and local level institutions to build resilience against GLOFs, and incorporate GLOF risk reduction into disaster management plans. The project also upgraded traditional early warning systems, and was later scaled up by Green Climate Fund (GCF).
“The year 2020 has highlighted the importance of building broad resilience in vulnerable developing countries, to climate change but also to health and economic risks. Climate services are critical in achieving resilience, and the Fund plays a crucial role in this partnership through its concrete adaptation projects on the ground serving the most vulnerable communities, with about 20 percent of its portfolio dedicated to supporting countries in building resilience through Early Warning System and Disaster Risk Reduction projects,” said Adaptation Fund Manager Mr. Mikko Ollikainen at the launch of the report. “The Fund also offers readiness support and new grant opportunities aimed at accelerating project scale-up, learning and innovation in adaptation, including disaster risk reduction.”