Climate adaptation finance has a blind spot on conflict and fragility

Author

Josie Emanuel

Yue Cao

Adriana Quevedo

Source(s)
Climate Home News

With the world already 1.1C warmer than pre-industrial times, we know that climate change impacts are deeply felt in communities across the world and adapting to them is deeply important.

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It also found that multilateral climate funds and bilateral donors tend not to allocate funds in fragile and conflict-affected situations, due to perceived higher risks and challenges. This creates conflict ‘blind spots’ that both increase the risk of poorly-designed adaptation programmes amplifying conflict situations, causing unintended harm, and prevent adaptation finance from reaching those in urgent need of support.

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The challenges in accessing adaptation finance, while not unique to fragile and conflict settings, are exacerbated by instability in these places. For instance, the minimum climate information and socio-economic data for climate finance project proposals is often lacking, due to a lack of monitoring infrastructure in conflict areas, or because non-state groups prevent project teams from accessing target areas or communities to collect baseline information.

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Programmes should involve conflict assessments that diagnose local power dynamics and imbalances, which are at the root of intercommunal conflicts over shared natural-resources. They should move beyond ‘security awareness’ to focus on preventing and mitigating local conflict.

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Local leaders and stakeholders need to actively participate in designing and implementing investments that are inclusive and recognise the heterogeneity of communities. Operational protocols are needed to support responses to unforeseen events, including conflicts.

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