African Development Bank is a multilateral development bank established in 1963 by the Organization of African Unity (OAU) to promote sustainable economic and social development. The Bank provides investment, advisory services, and technical assistance to its regional member countries (RMCs), based on country-specific development needs, to support investments focused on infrastructure, governance, disaster recovery and management, education, energy, and health. Through these investments, the Bank contributes directly to regional integration, fragile states assistance, and agriculture and also ensures gender equality, environment and social sustainability, and climate change are well mainstreamed in its operations.
Disaster Reduction Goal
The African Development Bank recognizes the implications of climate change impacts on its poverty reduction and sustainable development mandate, and in particular the vulnerability of several African countries to disaster risks.
Hence, the African Development Bank’s main objective is to promote the resilience of the livelihoods and economic sectors of African through climate change adaptation and disaster risk management.
Policies and Programmes in DRR
The African Development Bank has prioritized climate change and disaster risk reduction activities to support member countries facing intensified challenges to sustainable development. The Bank introduced the Climate Risk Management and Adaptation Strategy (CRMA) in 2009, which defines its approach to climate change adaption and disaster risk reduction through three main areas:
- climate proofing;
- policy, legal and regulatory reforms; and
- knowledge generation and capacity building.
Building on the CRMA, the Bank also launched the Climate Screening System (CSS) tool to ensure climate risks are mainstreamed into climate sensitive sectors at the early stages of the project cycle. The CSS tool basically helps to enhance synergies between disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation.
The African Development Bank has demonstrated its commitment to building the resilience of its member countries to disaster and climate risks through investment in projects and projects that promote DRR. The Bank launched, in partnership with the Commission of the African Union (AUC) and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), the Climate for Development in Africa (ClimDev-Africa) Programme in 2010. The overarching objective of this multi-partner initiative is to build a solid foundation to respond to climate change. To support this initiative, the African Development Bank established and plays host to the ClimDev Africa Special Fund (CDSF), which is expected to raise an estimate of $135 million. In addition, the Bank has committed US$30 million to strengthen the capacities of regional climate institutions to enhance their technical abilities and expertise to generate climate information for disaster risk reduction.
Over the last decade, the African Development Bank hase also invested in excess of $5 billion on natural disaster reduction and management projects throughout the African region. Examples of such projects include, among others, the Drought Resilience and Sustainable Livelihoods Programme in the Horn of Africa, Support to Agricultural Research, and the Mozambique Irrigation and Climate Resilience Project.
Making disaster risk reduction a policy priority, institutional strengthening (HFA 1)
Policy dialogue with borrowing countries is guided by the African Development Bank’s key instruments that address DRR, including the Emergency Assistance Policy (2008), and the Climate Risk Management and Adaptation Strategy (2009) that apply to the development and implementation of country strategies and country program dialogues. This formalized process has helped the Bank to proactively promote climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction to member countries. The Bank collaborates with its member countries to integrate both climate change interventions and DRR activities into national development policies and the Country Strategy Papers (CSPs).
Risk assessment and early warning systems (HFA 2)
The African Development Bank supports DRR initiatives through operations that establish early warning systems, preparedness and coping mechanisms to reduce vulnerability to natural disasters and severe climatic events. The Bank also promotes expertise and capacity building of member countries on early warning, risk assessment as well as mainstreaming of climate and gender into development planning.
Education, information and public awareness (HFA 3)
The African Development Bank provides financial and technical assistance to support training and capacity building on climate change adaptation and DRR in regional member countries at local and national levels. The Bank has also been facilitating regional cooperation and knowledge sharing on climate/disaster risks and climate change adaptation strategies.
Reducing underlying risk factors (HFA 4)
The African Development Bank’s approach ensures DRR strategies are well integrated into climate change adaptation. The Bank provides financial and technical support to improve agricultural development and food security in vulnerable areas for increased resilience to climate and disaster risks. It is working with its member countries to promote innovative farming and water management projects including promoting drought resistant crops, irrigation efficiency, water management, and coastal zone and watershed protection.The Nerica Dissemination Project which promotes drought resistant crop varieties was implemented widely in West Africa. In addition, with the Climate Screening System, the Bank ensures its projects are screened for climate risks and such risks are mitigated.
Preparedness for effective response (HFA 5)
The African Development Bank developed the Special Response Fund (SRF) to provide financial assistance to support short and long term emergency relief operations in member countries. Aside contribute to the immediate relief of countries affected by disasters, these operations focus on preparedness activities that improve countries’ resilience to future disaster events.
Disaster Risk Reduction Focal Point(s)
Mr Tony Nyong,
Compliance and Safeguards Division,
Quality Assurance and Results Department