The Policy & Practice of Climate Change & Water

Adapting Rwanda’s economy to a changing climate

The Climate and Development Knowledge Network and Future Climate for Africa are hosting a public event on "Adapting Rwanda’s economy to a changing climate." The event will take place at ODI's offices in London, but people can participate either in person or through an online simulcast.

Climate change is already under way and set to continue for the next few decades, even as countries take action to tackle its longer-term effects. With the mercury rising and extreme weather events such as heatwaves, drought and heavy rains becoming more common, climate change is a development issue now. Developing countries that depend heavily on farming, fishing and forestry are especially vulnerable. Rwanda is such a case: its lucrative tea and coffee sectors employ millions of people. Hear from expert panelists on these urgent issues facing Rwanda and other developing countries.

When: Friday 20 May 2016; 12:00 – 13:30 GMT+1
Where: ODI, 203 Blackfriars Road, London SE1 8NJ, United Kingdom and streamed live online
How to Register: Visit here to register to attend in person or by streaming the event online. This is a free event. Those attending in person are invited to stay for lunch and networking afterwards.

Doubling Rwanda’s area under tea and coffee cultivation is at the core of the government’s medium term development plan and promises to transform the country’s landscape; but tea and coffee plants are sensitive to changes in temperature and rainfall. Are there affordable options to adapt to challenging climate conditions and keep the tea and coffee industries growing?

Panellists at the event discuss a promising – and highly pragmatic - ‘decision first’ approach to adapting to climate change in Rwanda’s tea and coffee sectors. This approach lowers climate-related risks even if we don’t know the exact profile of climate change in the decades ahead. A spokesperson from the Government of Rwanda will discuss how the ‘decision first’ climate adaptation framework is working in practice to secure the future of the country’s tea and coffee industries.

Speakers will also explore how the principles can help other countries and sectors to become more climate-resilient. This work is an early product of the Future Climate for Africa programme, which is generating fundamentally new climate science in Africa, and ensuring that this science assists human development.

Ari Huhtala, Deputy CEO for Policy and Programmes, Climate and Development Knowledge Network (CDKN), ODI

Dr Nicola Ranger – Climate Advisor, DFID

Paul Watkiss – Global Climate Adaptation Partnership
Alex Mulisa – Coordinator, Government of Rwanda Climate and Environment Fund FONERWA (via video link)
Sarah Love – Climate Change and Low Carbon Development Advisor, DFID Rwanda (via video link)
Dr Emily Wilkinson – Disaster Risk Reduction and Resilience Specialist, ODI