Germany to Help Strengthen the Climate Vulnerable Forum’s Institutional Capacity

Germany partners with UNDP to help countries severely affected by climate change to strengthen policy-making

Geneva, Switzerland

15 April 2015

Germany is providing a 100,000 Euro Federal Foreign Office grant to facilitate activities of governments collaborating in the Climate Vulnerable Forum, whose Secretariat is hosted by UNDP. The grant will support the organization of regional and global consultations and policy events of the Forum’s member governments and partners during the first half of 2015.
The grant specifically enables the translation of regional climate change policy agendas into a global perspective for countries highly vulnerable to climate change, 20 of which are currently members of the Forum. A global consultation supported by the grant will bring together the hosts of five Forum regional meetings being held in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean and Latin America, the Middle East and the Pacific during 2014-15, and will take place in June in Bonn in conjunction with the next round of UNFCCC negotiations culminating in Paris in December this year.
“We know that the effects of climate change are already being felt right now. So it is vital that those most affected are able to share amongst each other their knowledge on how best to respond to this emerging challenge. We also need more dialogue and cooperation across regions and across silos if we are going to reach a new global agreement on climate change that brings in all countries. Any such agreement must also safeguard the most vulnerable. We’re therefore extremely pleased to be able to work with UNDP, Philippines and many other governments in supporting the Climate Vulnerable Forum’s global and regional work in these areas” said Germany’s Ambassador to the United Nations in Geneva, Joachim Rücker.
The Forum’s June 2015 global consultation will generate the first representative picture of the needs and aspirations developed by those countries facing some of the most severe effects of climate change from all regions of the world. In summarizing regional perspectives, it will also enable the development of a road map to advocate on shared concerns and secure positive outcomes in the ongoing UN negotiations on climate change.
The policy dialogue and knowledge exchange activities supported will help promote climate change policies that better respond to the needs of communities at risk due to unusually severe storms, floods, sea-level rise, heat, drought and many other impacts of climate change. The activities also enable governments to share knowledge and best practice in tackling climate change in order to manage these challenges more effectively.
Members of the Forum, which is currently chaired by the Philippines, include Vanuatu, a small island nation extensively damaged in March by Super Cyclone Pam, as well as vulnerable countries from Africa, Asia, Latin America, the Caribbean and the Pacific.
“We are very pleased that a growing number of governments realize the importance of supporting our South-South collaboration on climate change. Climate change continues to pose a threat to development priorities. Germany’s grant will facilitate more substantial focus on the crucial international policy track and to share the great wealth of knowledge we have already accumulated both within and between regions,” said Philippine Ambassador to the UN in Geneva, Cecilia Rebong.
The grant also supports a regional meeting of the Forum in the Middle East and North Africa in May 2015. Hosted by the Government of Lebanon with participation of more than 10 technical level delegations from governments and international organizations of the region, it will identify the most important risks, solutions and needs in the context of the new post-2015 international climate change regime.
“Germany’s grant in support of this Forum’s is a great complement to our wide portfolio of activities working with developing countries to address climate change. If we are to help reduce the vulnerability of hundreds of millions of people to the effects of climate change through conducive policies and better adaptation and mitigation strategies, the approach of the Climate Vulnerable Forum is indispensable. By supporting cooperation and joint action by the countries most affected, it makes more likely that the right policies and strategies are applied – and the effects of climate changes on the most vulnerable are reduced or reversed,” said Neil Buhne, UNDP Geneva Director.
UNDP works with developing countries to design and implement climate change solutions. UNDP is the largest service provider in the UN system on climate change and manages a $1.3 billion climate change portfolio of mitigation and adaptation projects over 140 countries to transition toward low-emission and climate-resilient sustainable development. The portfolio focuses on integrated climate strategies, cross-sectoral climate resilient livelihoods, promoting access to clean and affordable energy services, promoting low emission and climate resilient urban and transport infrastructure and access to new finance mechanisms.
The Climate Vulnerable Forum was launched by the Maldives in 2009 ahead of the Copenhagen climate summit (UNFCCC COP15). The Forum has facilitated collective global cooperation of countries highly vulnerable to climate change aimed at achieving policy advances, an amplified voice of vulnerable communities, and the building and exchange of knowledge. The Forum also commissions the “Climate Vulnerability Monitor” policy research series on the global impact of climate change. Forum activities are supported by the Climate Vulnerable Forum Trust Fund and partner institutions, including the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), which hosts a dedicated Climate Vulnerable Forum support project, and the International Organization for Migration (IOM), among other bodies. Philippines is taking forward leadership of the Forum and its Multi-Partner Trust Fund from January 2015 through to July 2016.

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Photo: German flag – 19 July 2012 – source:  fdecomite (flickr) – license: CC BY 2.0

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