The Policy & Practice of Climate Change & Water

UNFCCC

Calls for Submissions in the Area of Adaptation and Climate Resilience

Share your experience and research, and help scale up climate-resilience all over the world. In response to the invitation of the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA) at its 44th session, the Nairobi work programme (NWP) has opened three calls for submissions in the area of adaptation and climate resilience.

You are invited to post your organization's submission(s) before 20 September 2017. Your submission will inform the climate negotiations during COP 23 in November 2017, and will be made available to the general public. For further information on the submission process, and to access templates for submission, read more below.
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OOSKAnews Voices | Watering Down the Paris Agreement: Global Climate Policy and Revenge of the Cities

OOSKAnews Voices is a series of guest “opinion columns” on water, written by senior participants in different parts of the international water community. The columns provide a global platform for organizations and individuals to promulgate their views and messages. In this piece John H. Matthews, co-founder and Coordinator for AGWA, describes the implications of the United States' decision to withdraw from the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement. The article focuses on the decision's effects on UNFCCC processes and the potential role of this withdrawal as a rallying cry for cities and other nations.

"The real question, however, is if US actions are the start of an erosion of support for the Paris Accord or, alternatively, the community of nations rallies round and doubles down.

...within the US’s hierarchies of governance, states and cities play a more important role around energy management. Especially for cities, there is a more widespread consensus of the need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and slow the rate of climate change. These decision makers are close to the impacts. As a result, the US may continue to make substantial progress against national climate goals."
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#ClimateIsWater Members Hold Side Event at Bonn Climate Change Conference

Global Water Partnership, International Water Association and World Water Council, three members of the #ClimateIsWater Initiative convened a side event at the Bonn Climate Change Conference on 18 May. The event, entitled "Implementation of NDCs – climate finance for water-related adaptation and mitigation action," was well received by the audience. It was covered by multiple types of media, allowing you to read all about the event or watch a full-length recording. See below for details.
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Guest Blog | Summary of UNFCCC Fifteenth Standing Committee on Finance Meeting

This guest blog was written by Stephanie Lyons, Policy Analyst (Water Security and Climate Change) for WaterAid's Global Policy Team. Ms. Lyons represented the AGWA Policy Group at the UNFCCC Standing Committee on Finance meeting in Bonn, which took place March 7-9. The following report outlines future plans for the SCF in 2017 and beyond.

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The 15th meeting of the UNFCCC Standing Committee on Finance (SCF) brought together the SCF’s member countries and observers to take forward its work in 2017. This was the first of two SCF meetings for 2017 (aside from the SCF Forum); the second meeting has been tentatively scheduled for 18-22 September 2017. An abridged summary of the SCF’s main agreements follows; detailed daily summaries are available from the Climate Finance Advisory Service and documented outcomes are available from the UNFCCC Secretariat.
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Synthesis report on health and adaptation prepared under the Nairobi work programme is now available

The Nairobi Work Programme has released its synthesis report on health and adaptation. It is now available online to view or download. Below is a synopsis of the report provided by the NWP.
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Climate change presents a risk to health in a variety of ways. The health risks resulting from climate change impacts in countries are changing and the interlinkages between health, climate change and other drivers of global environmental changes are complex and need to be better understood. A large number of activities ranging from policies that are planned and implemented by governments, to various actions undertaken by intergovernmental organizations, non-governmental organizations and communities are already under way in order to address climate change impacts on health. However, a number of challenges, particularly with regard to awareness and education, as well as planning, capacity and financial mechanisms continue to limit action on the ground.

In order to better protect human health from the impacts of climate change, numerous collaborative actions need to be implemented. During the 10th Focal Point Forum of the Nairobi work programme on impacts, vulnerability and adaptation to climate change, which focused on health and adaptation, Parties, partner organizations and experts discussed a range of collaborative actions to protect health from the impacts of climate change and to develop resilient health systems.

This document provides a synthesis of information on the impacts of climate change on human health, and on emerging activities, challenges and opportunities for collaborative climate action, including under the Nairobi work programme on impacts, vulnerability and adaptation to climate change. It is based on the information submitted by Parties, partner organizations and other relevant organizations, and inputs from participants during and after the 10th Focal Point Forum on health and adaptation.
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Water & climate change policy: A brief history for future progress | Part 3

The final installment in a series of three articles on water and climate change policy has just been released by Global Water Forum. The three-part series is written by a group of AGWA members including the Co-Chairs, Coordinator, and Policy Group members. The articles will examine the co-evolution of water and climate change policy over the past 20 years. Part three explores the period from the most recent global climate policy conference to the present day, with speculation about where we may see water and climate policy headed into the future.
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Water & climate change policy: A brief history for future progress | Part 2

The second installment in a series of three articles on water and climate change policy has just been released by Global Water Forum. The three-part series is written by a group of AGWA members including the Co-Chairs, Coordinator, and Policy Group members. The articles will examine the co-evolution of water and climate change policy over the past 20 years. Part two also tells the story of AGWA's creation.
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Water & climate change policy: A brief history for future progress | Part 1

The first in a series of three articles on water and climate change policy has just been released by Global Water Forum. The three-part series is written by a group of AGWA members including the Co-Chairs, Coordinator, and Policy Group members. The articles will examine the co-evolution of water and climate change policy over the past 20 years. No matter what your level of policy knowledge is, this article is definitely worth your time.
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COP22 OUTCOME DOCUMENT OF THE ACTION EVENT ON WATER

Thanks to the efforts of the water community, Morocco, France, and Peru, and the UNFCCC, a dedicated "Water Action Day" was organized during COP 22, which included a Dialogue about the role of the water community in supporting the UNFCCC and the role of the UNFCCC in supporting effective water management. The participants of the Dialogue, led in discussion by the OECD and AGWA, had their comments directed into a plan released today.

Organizers have prepared an Outcome Document of the Action Event on Water based upon the discussions that took place during throughout the Action Day on Water. The document contains key information that will have important ramifications for water-climate policy moving forward.
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Free Online Course | Impacts of Climate Change in Latin America

The Inter-American Institute for Global Change Research is offering a unique free online course on the Impacts of Climate Change and its Impacts in Latin America taught by 21 Latin American scientists to empower resource managers, decision makers, stakeholders, scientists to cope with climate and global changes. The course aims to provide users with a good understanding of current climate change science as well as analytical abilities in the following areas: impact of climate change on biodiversity and ecosystem services, impact of environmental global changes, international mechanisms to cope with impacts on biodiversity and the economics of climate change

The course will be launched at COP-22. The course promotes Sustainable Development Goals #4, #13 and #17. Read More...
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OOSKAnews Voice | Rain in the Desert - Merging Climate and Water Policies at Morocco’s COP22

OOSKAnews Voices is a series of guest “opinion columns” on water, written by senior participants in different parts of the international water community. The columns provide a global platform for organizations and individuals to promulgate their views and messages. In this piece John H. Matthews, co-founder and secretariat coordinator for AGWA, describes the importance of next month's COP22 conference to water.

"The Paris Agreement — the most significant climate framework since the founding of the UNFCCC — does not mention water at all, but the Paris Agreement may also be the most significant water agreement in human history. How does a policy framework that lacks any mention of water affect water management? The answer shows the gap between the climate policy world and the water world..." Read More...
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From Bonn to Marrakech - The Role of Water in Ongoing Climate Discussions

This guest blog was written by AGWA Policy Group members Maggie White (French Water Partnership) and Sofia Widforss (SIWI)

The "spirit of Paris" — transparency, inclusiveness and flexibility — was on everyone’s minds during the Pre-Cop meeting that took place in Bonn at the UNFCCC headquarters from 16-26 May. A sense of purposeful urgency was in the air. Participants sought to continue the positive dynamics of Paris that promoted involvement of all stakeholders, leaving "no one behind," and inciting countries to ratify quickly so that the Agreement could also enter into force earlier. "The world is looking upon us and we cannot disappoint it."

During the UNFCCC Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA) and Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI) meetings, the constructive tone from Paris was present. An optimistic spirit was in the hallways — a willingness to build on the Paris Agreement (PA), albeit facing a complex process ahead. Shifting from an agreement-focus towards an implementation-focus, adaptation has replaced mitigation as the centre of attention. Water, as the key element mentioned in most Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) and essential for adaptation measures, was mentioned in many different contexts (e.g., linked to sustainable business and agriculture, gender and human rights, as well as to funding). Read More...
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After Paris, A More Fluid Approach To Climate Change?

On April 22nd leaders from over 175 nations joined together in New York to sign the Paris Agreement on climate change. AGWA's Secretariat Coordinator John Matthews joined with Regina Buono of the Baker Institute for Public Policy to write a piece for Forbe's on this historic occasion and what it means going forward.

"The agreement signaled a broad commitment to slow the rate of climate change and to provide support to many of the poor countries facing big climate impacts to their most vulnerable citizens. But what the Paris agreement really indicated is a shift in perspective: from a planet thinking about reducing the rate of climate change (and the regulatory and other risks inherent in managing businesses and economies with the primary objective of halting or slowing carbon emissions) to one looking at adapting to climate change by addressing the risks inherent in climate impacts. And the most important element in this shift—the medium through which change and adaptation can be seen most clearly and quickly—is water."

The full article is available here. Read More...
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Call for Contributions | Initiatives Using Local, Indigenous And Traditional Knowledge and Practices for Adaptation

The Nairobi work programme team at the UNFCCC secretariat invites you to contribute to the secretariat’s data compilation effort on the use of local, indigenous and traditional knowledge and practices for adaptation.

At its forty-first session, the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA) requested the secretariat under the guidance of the Chair of the SBSTA, in collaboration with the Adaptation Committee and the Least Developed Countries Expert Group, and with contributions from relevant Nairobi work programme partner organizations, to make publicly available a compilation of good practices and tools and available data collection initiatives for the use of local, indigenous and traditional knowledge and practices for adaptation, for consideration at SBSTA 44.

In light of this call for contributions on the part of Nairobi work programme partner organizations, we welcome all information you would like to share with the secretariat regarding good practices, tools and data collection initiatives referring to the use of local, indigenous and traditional knowledge and practices for adaptation. If possible it is requested that information be submitted both in English and in Spanish or French so as to allow for broader outreach and dissemination of knowledge. Read More...
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Information on organizations working on slow onset events

In the context of the work under the UNFCCC Warsaw International Mechanism for Loss and Damage associated with Climate Change Impacts, the Executive Committee of the Mechanism initiated a stocktake of organizations working on slow onset events (e.g. sea level rise, increasing temperatures, ocean acidification, glacial retreat and related impacts, salinization, land and forest degradation, loss of biodiversity and desertification) and the scope of their current efforts. The results from the initial stocktake are compiled into an online database. Read More...
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