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Partnering for Climate

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Introduction

As part of Canada’s doubling of its previous climate commitment from $2.65 billion (2015-2020) to $5.3 billion (2021-2026) and its objective to leverage the climate action expertise and commitment of organizations in Canada, $315 million has been allocated for Partnering for Climate, to fund projects from civil society, Indigenous Peoples and other organizations in Canada that will support climate change adaptation in Sub-Saharan Africa and other parts of the world.

This commitment advances implementation of the Environment and Climate Action Area of the Feminist International Assistance Policy (FIAP).

In 2020, the Government of Canada reached out to partners across Canada and the world. We asked them for their views to inform our climate commitment. A number of key messages stood out, including:

  • The Canadian government should increase funding for climate change adaptation, including for locally led solutions that increase resiliency to the impacts of climate change;
  • The government should leverage the knowledge expertise and resources of civil society, Indigenous Peoples and other organizations in Canada to help developing countries achieve their climate change adaptation objectives;
  • Nature and nature-based solutions (NbS) have a critical role to play in this area.

In response to what we heard, and as a reflection of Canada’s commitment to both the Paris Agreement and the G7 2030 Nature Compact, Global Affairs Canada established Partnering for Climate.

The $315 million Partnering for Climate allocation includes two programming components:

  1. $300 million to support projects that use NbS to help countries, communities and people in Sub-Saharan Africa – a particularly climate-vulnerable region – to become more resilient to the impacts of climate change. This funding includes at least $20 million to help advance women’s rights and climate change adaptation. For questions related to this envelope, please contact: PartenairesClimatPartners@international.gc.ca
  2. $15 million to support the partnering of Indigenous Peoples in Canada with Indigenous Peoples in developing countries around the world. The aim is to achieve the climate action objectives of Indigenous Peoples abroad. Please consult this webpage for details about this funding envelope: 2022 call for concept notes—Indigenous Peoples Partnering for Climate (international.gc.ca). For questions, please contact: Indigenous-Dev-Autochtones@international.gc.ca.

In addition to support for programming, Partnering for Climate includes a commitment to engagement and knowledge sharing. This reflects what we heard regarding the importance of ensuring that real-time lessons learned from Partnering for Climate help to inform ongoing climate action efforts in both developing and developed countries. This will be done through a new community of practice for nature-based solutions for climate and biodiversity practitioners and supporters (see details below).

Timelines for Sub-Saharan Africa component

Global Affairs Canada is committed to ensuring a transparent and equitable process for the Partnering for Climate initiative and will continue to provide status updates. 

Global Affairs Canada is using a multi-step process for managing the $300 million envelope for Sub-Saharan Africa.

In the first step, between February 2022 and August 2022, on a rolling basis Global Affairs Canada received and assessed 67 unique concept notes requesting a total of $1.16 billion in funding (see Archive Section for the list of concept notes received and program criteria and direction). After assessing the concept notes, the department invited 21 applicants to submit full proposals (see Full Proposals Received below).

In the second step, the department is looking at full proposals and making funding decisions. The department received full proposals between August 2022 and October 2022. The department is reviewing proposals on a rolling basis. Funding announcements are expected from late fall 2022/winter 2023 to summer 2023 and the table Announced Projects (below) will be updated accordingly.

The $300 million envelope will not be fully allocated until all proposals have been assessed.

The department will notify applicants as soon as possible if their proposal is selected for funding so that contract negotiations can begin with a view to expediting project operationalization. 

Applicants whose projects are ultimately not selected for funding will be notified once the entire envelope has been allocated. This is expected to be in spring 2023.

In the third step of the process, between December 2022 and March 31, 2026, funding agreements will be negotiated, projects will be implemented, and monitoring, evaluation, research and learning will take place. Lessons will be shared through the new community of practice (see details below) and through departmental reporting processes.

Full proposals received

Full proposalTotal valueCountry/countriesEcosystem(s)
1.$20 millionSenegal, Gambia, MauritaniaCoastal (integrated resource management)
2.$30 millionMozambique, Tanzania, Kenya, Madagascar, ComorosCoastal (regenerative seascapes)
3.$20 millionSenegalCoastal (mangroves)
4.$16.5 millionKenyaCoastal (restorative aquaculture/agriculture)
5.$30 millionBurkina Faso, Mali, NigerSemi-arid (agriculture, agroforestry)
6.$15.25 millionEthiopia, Somalia, South SudanSemi-arid (savannah, grassland, forests)
7.$36 millionEthiopia, Kenya, Mozambique, ZimbabweAfromontagne (agriculture)
8.$16 millionCôte d’Ivoire, Guinea-Bissau, Senegal, TogoCoastal (mangroves/agriculture)
9.$30 millionCongo, ChadForest and marine
10.$15.6 millionMadagascar, Mozambique, TanzaniaCoastal (marine, wetlands), floodplains
11.$25 millionCameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Niger, NigeriaSurface freshwater and wetlands
12.$20 millionEthiopiaWetlands
13.$15 millionZimbabweSemi-arid and dry tropical forests, wetlands
14.$22 millionGhana, Guinea, Côte d’IvoireDeciduous and semi-deciduous forests
15.$28.7 millionEthiopia, Rwanda, South AfricaSurface freshwater (river), wetlands
16.$16 millionGuineaAfromontane (agroforestry)
17.$27.5 millionTanzaniaMarine coastal (mangroves and agroforestry)
18.$16.3 millionCameroon, ChadSurface freshwater (river basin)
19.$4.7 millionBenin, Burkina FasoForest
20.$5 millionBurkina Faso, Ethiopia, Ghana, UgandaSemi-arid grassland
21.$10millionDemocratic Republic of CongoTropical rainforest, watershed

Announced projects

Project titleAnnounced on:Total valueCountry/countriesEcosystem(s)Executing agency/ies
Feminist Climate Action in West AfricaDecember 16, 2022$16 millionCôte d'Ivoire, Guinea-Bissau, Senegal and TogoCoastal (mangroves/agriculture)Inter Pares and Solidarité Union Coopération (SUCO)
Conservation and Sustainable Management of Coastal and Marine EcosystemsFebruary 6, 2023$16.5 millionKenyaCoastal (restorative aquaculture/agriculture)Plan International
Regenerative seascapes for people, climate and natureFebruary 6, 2023$30 millionComoros, Kenya, Madagascar, Mozambique and TanzaniaCoastal (regenerative seascapes)Mission Inclusion
Natur’ELLESFebruary 6, 2023$20 millionSenegalCoastal (mangroves)Socodevi

Engagement and knowledge-sharing activities

Sub-Saharan Africa component

In early 2022, Global Affairs Canada reached out to organizations in Canada interested in nature-based solutions for climate adaptation in Sub-Saharan Africa to invite them to participate in the events described below to ensure a common understanding of the objectives of the Partnering for Climate envelope and to share knowledge. These sessions were organized with civil society development and environment networks, and advertised on this website. Participation was open and inclusive.

The recording of the March 7, 2022 English introductory webinar for the $300 million envelope for Sub-Saharan Africa is available on Global Affairs Canada - YouTube.

The recording of the March 9, 2022 French introductory webinar for the $300 million envelope for Sub-Saharan Africa is available on Affaires mondiales Canada - YouTube.

The recording of the April 5, 2022 bilingual webinar on environmental (climate change and biodiversity) and gender coding requirements for the $300 million envelope for Sub-Saharan Africa is available on Global Affairs Canada - YouTube.

“Indigenous Peoples Partnering for Climate” component

Global Affairs Canada is collaborating with Indigenous organizations in Canada on the $15 million 2022 call for concept notes—Indigenous Peoples Partnering for Climate (international.gc.ca). On November 25, 2022 Global Affairs Canada hosted a webinar about the call.  The video of this webinar can be accessed on Global Affairs Canada -YouTube. 

Nature-based solutions for climate and biodiversity community of practice

In keeping with the Government’s Climate Finance objective to “leverage Canada’s own expertise and innovative solutions on climate change to better address the needs of developing countries”, and in response to recommendations from organizations in Canada that helped inform the design of Partnering for Climate, Global Affairs Canada is committed to supporting knowledge sharing and capacity building in nature-based solutions for climate adaptation and biodiversity through a community of practice. 

The community of practice, co-developed with members of the Canadian Coalition on Climate Change and Development (C4D), aims to provide a forum for organizations in Canada and across the world – not only those receiving Partnering for Climate funding - to contribute their insights, expertise and networks towards the broad objective of helping to improve evidence-based, inclusive and impactful nature-based solutions for climate adaptation and biodiversity worldwide.

Organizations interested in participating in this community of practice are invited to contact PartenairesClimatPartners@international.gc.ca.

Upcoming community of practice events

There are no upcoming events at this time.

Past community of practice events

On June 2, 2022, C4D, the Canadian Food Security Policy Group and the International Institute for Sustainable Development organized the webinar: “Nature-based Solutions for Climate Adaptation”. The event explored how the concept of nature-based solutions for adaptation is defined, discussed its potential and limitations for climate adaptation and biodiversity protection, and presented diverse case studies.  During the event, Global Affairs Canada invited participants to share their views on objectives, principles and key areas of focus for a community of practice. Feedback included the need to be inclusive, the need to accommodate Southern voices, and the importance of Indigenous knowledge. The webinar (English only) can be viewed at IISD Nature for Climate Adaptation Initiative.

On October 7, 2022, Aga Khan Foundation Canada and the International Institute for Sustainable Development hosted an event entitled: From Knowledge to Practice: Advancing Gender-Responsive Nature-Based Climate Solutions. The event included: a presentation on Nature for Climate Adaptation Initiative: Building Capacity for an Inclusive and Resilient Future and case studies detailing best practice in advancing gender equality through rights-based, inclusive approaches to nature-based solutions for climate change adaptation. These included Gender-Responsive Action for Climate Resilient Water Resource Management in Suriname, Success, Challenges and Opportunities in Achieving Gender-Inclusive Climate Resilience in AKF Afghanistan, and Peru’s Natural Infrastructure for Water Security Project. Global Affairs Canada provided an Overview of Canada’s Climate Finance Commitments and discussed the Nature-Based Solutions Community of Practice: Setting the Stage. The webinar (English only) can be viewed on Aga Khan Foundation - YouTube.

On November 16, 2022, the International Institute for Sustainable Development and Global Affairs Canada co-hosted a United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP27) side event at the Canada Pavilion on “Building Capacity to Implement Rights-Based Approaches to Nature-Based Climate Solutions”. The event featured panel presentations, an interactive Q&A, and capacity-building products developed through the Nature for Climate Adaptation Initiative supported by Global Affairs Canada. It examined how to generate biodiversity co-benefits through nature-based climate solutions while following rights-based approaches, highlighted examples from different regions, and discussed the expected outcomes for nature-based solutions for climate and social inclusion in the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework. The English-only event page can be accessed at Building the Capacity to Implement Inclusive Approaches to Nature-based Climate Solutions.

On November 24, 2022, Farm Radio International presented the webinar: What people are saying about nature-based solutions: initial findings from our research in sub-Saharan Africa and Canada".  The event shared findings related to Farm Radio International’s Nature-based Solutions for Climate Change Adaptation project, including "state of play" reports in 6 countries; Farm Radio International’s first On Air Dialogue with people in rural Burkina Faso and Ethiopia; and the results of an opinion poll conducted in Canada to assess Canadian attitudes about nature-based solutions for climate change adaptation, particularly in Africa. The recording of webinar (English only) can be accessed at Farm Radio International - YouTube.

In December 2022, during the UN Biodiversity Conference in Montreal (CBD COP15), the International Institute for Sustainable Development hosted two events on nature-based solutions.  The first event examined how to generate measurable biodiversity co-benefits through nature-based solutions for climate adaptation and discussed some of the challenges and opportunities in scaling up these solutions while simultaneously addressing social inclusion, gender equity and biodiversity. See Nature-Based Climate Solutions: Enhancing Biodiversity Co-Benefits | IISD Earth Negotiations Bulletin for the English-only write-up of this event.

The second event featured a series of panel sessions highlighting the importance of synergies between biodiversity conservation and climate adaptation for the successful implementation of the Global Biodiversity Framework and the scaling up of climate and nature initiatives. See Highlights and images for 15 December 2022 (English only) prepared by the International Institute for Sustainable Development’s Earth Negotiations Bulletin.

The first annual meeting of the Climate and Biodiversity Community of Practice took place on February 9, 2023, during International Development Week.  A report with copies of presentations will be added here shortly.

Application process for the Partnering for Climate call for concept notes (closed)

We are no longer accepting proposals for this initiative. The following will help you understand what the application process was.

Partnering for Climate program criteria and concepts received

As part of Global Affairs Canada’s commitment to ensuring a transparent and equitable process for the Partnering for Climate initiative, the Department published regular updates on the status of submitted concept notes. 

Applicants of concept notes had to ensure that:

Concept noteValueCountry/countriesEcosystemsStatus
1.$30 millionSenegal, Cape Verde, Gambia, Mauritania, Guinea-Bissau, GuineaCoastal (integrated resource management)Invited to submit full proposal
2.$30 millionMozambique, Tanzania, Kenya, Madagascar, ComorosCoastal (regenerative seascapes)Invited to submit full proposal
3.$30 millionSenegal, MozambiqueCoastal (mangroves)Invited to submit full proposal
4.$31 millionMozambique, Malawi, Zambia, ZimbabweZambezi River Basin (agriculture)Concept not retained
5.$16.5 millionKenyaCoastal (restorative aquaculture/agriculture)Invited to submit full proposal
6.$27.5 millionSenegal, Mali, GuineaSenegal River Basin (agriculture)Concept not retained
7.$20 millionBurkina Faso, Mali, NigerSavannah (agriculture)Concept not retained
8.$5.8 million TanzaniaCoastal (agroforestry/ horticulture)Concept not retained
9.$30 millionBurkina Faso, Mali, NigerSemi-arid (agriculture, agroforestry)Invited to submit full proposal
10.$15.25 millionEthiopia, Somalia, South SudanSemi-arid (savannah, grassland, forests)Invited to submit full proposal
11.$15 millionMali, Burkina Faso, GuineaDry and sub-humid (agriculture)Concept not retained
12.$40 millionEthiopia, Kenya, Mozambique, ZimbabweAfromontagne (agriculture)Invited to submit full proposal
13.$16.2 millionMozambiqueSub-tropicalConcept not retained
14.$30 millionKenya, Tanzania, MozambiqueCoastal (mangroves, seagrass, coral reefs, forests)Concept not retained
15.$16 millionIvory Coast, Guinea-Bissau, Senegal, TogoCoastal (mangroves/agriculture)Invited to submit full proposal
16.$30 millionCongo, ChadForest and marineInvited to submit full proposal
17.$20 millionEthiopia, Ghana, Kenya, UgandaTropical savannahConcept not retained
18.$5.25 millionTanzaniaAgricultureConcept not retained
19.$5.8 millionKenyaSemi-arid grassland and Dry tropical forest (cropland)Concept not retained
20.$8 millionMozambique, KenyaCoastal (mangroves)Concept not retained
21.$20 millionKenya, Uganda, Tanzania, EthiopiaGrasslandConcept not retained
22.$17 millionMadagascar, Mozambique, TanzaniaCoastal (marine, wetlands); FloodplainsInvited to submit full proposal
23.$15 millionMadagascarTropical dry and rainforestConcept not retained
24.$15.5 millionGhana, Kenya, South SudanArid and semi-arid grassland (agriculture)Concept not retained
25.$30 millionCameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Niger, NigeriaSurface freshwater and wetlandsInvited to submit full proposal
26.$40 millionMadagascar, Mozambique, TanzaniaCoastal (marine)Concept not retained
27.$20 millionEthiopiaWetlandsInvited to submit full proposal
28.$15 millionZimbabweSemi-arid and dry tropical forests, wetlandsInvited to submit full proposal
29.$20 millionSouth Sudan, Tanzania, UgandaGrasslands and floodplainsConcept not retained
30.$7.2 millionEthiopia, Malawi, TanzaniaSemi-arid (agriculture)Concept not retained
31.$25 millionGhana, Guinea, Cote-d’IvoireDeciduous and semi-deciduous forestsInvited to submit full proposal
32.$25 millionBénin, Kenya, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, UgandaTropical rainforest; grasslands, surface freshwater, wetlands, coastalConcept not retained
33.$19 millionMalawi, Mozambique, NigeriaSurface freshwaterConcept under review
34.$31 millionEthiopia, Rwanda, South AfricaSurface freshwater (river), wetlandsConcept under review
35.$5 millionCameroonSavannah, mountainConcept not retained
36.$29.1 millionBenin, Cameroon, Nigeria, TanzaniaCoastal (marine), river basin, semi-arid grasslandConcept not retained
37.$36 millionKenya, Rwanda, Somalia, UgandaArid, semi-arid and sub-humid (agriculture)Concept not retained
38.$14 millionGuineaAfromontane (agroforestry)Invited to submit full proposal
39.$15 millionDemocratic Republic of CongoTropical dry and rainforestConcept not retained
40.$17.6 millionBurkina Faso, Ethiopia, MaliGrassland, semi-arid shrubs, semi-arid grassland, desertConcept not retained
41.$40 millionBurkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Niger, SenegalSemi-arid grasslandsConcept not retained
42.$5.8 millionTanzaniaMarine coastal (mangroves and agroforestry)Invited to submit full proposal
43.$15 millionTanzaniaDry tropical forestConcept not retained
44.$26.5 millionMozambique, Malawi, Zambia, ZimbabweWetlandsConcept not retained
45.$16.5 millionCameroon, ChadSurface freshwater (river basin)Invited to submit full proposal
46.$5.5 millionCameroon, CongoSurface freshwater (river basin)Concept not retained
47.$36 millionBurundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, RwandaSurface freshwater (river basin)Concept not retained
48.$15 millionTanzania, UgandaTropical rainforest, wet savannah, grasslands, woodlandsConcept not retained
49.$10 millionCameroon, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, GabonForestsConcept not retained
50.$15 millionUgandaTropical Rainforest, Temperate Forest, Grassland, Freshwater, WetlandsConcept not retained
51.$5 millionBenin, Burkina FasoForestInvited to full proposal
52.$8 millionGhanaCoastal (mangroves)Concept not retained
53.$17.9 millionKenyaSemi-arid shrubs and grasslandConcept not retained
54.$5.2 millionBurkina Faso, Ethiopia, Ghana, UgandaSemi-arid grasslandInvited to full proposal
55.$16 millionKenya, South Africa, MadagascarCoastal and wetlandConcept not retained
56.$15 millionKenya, Uganda, South Sudan, Democratic Republic of Congo, MaliVarious terrestrial coastal and marine forests, grasslands and wetlandsConcept not retained
57.$20 millionEthiopiaGrassland, forest, surface freshwaterConcept not retained
58.$15 millionCameroon, Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon, CongoTropical rainforestConcept not retained
59.$17 millionIvory CoastCoastal (mangroves)Concept not retained
60.$15 millionMadagascarTropical rainforest, dry tropical forestConcept not retained
61.$10 millionDemocratic republic of CongoTropical rainforest, watershedInvited to full proposal
62.$21 millionKenya, Tanzania, MozambiqueCoastal and marineConcept not retained
63.$20.6 millionBeninWetlandsConcept not retained
64.$15 millionMaliSurface freshwater, grassland, semi-arid shrubs, dry tropical forest, tropical rainforestConcept not retained
65.$16 millionGuineaCoastal wetland (mangroves)Concept not retained
66.$20 millionEthiopiaGrassland, semi-arid riverine forestConcept not retained
67.$15 millionKenya, UgandaSemi-arid shrubs and grasslandConcept not retained
68.$8 millionMozambiqueCoastal (mangroves)Concept not retained
69.$11.2 millionMozambiqueAgricultural land, dry tropical forest, grasslandConcept not retained
70.$20 millionBurkina Faso, Mali, NigerSavannah (agriculture)Concept not retained
71.$15 millionDemocratic Republic of CongoTropical rainforestConcept not retained
72.$15 millionDemocratic Republic of CongoTropical rainforest, swamp forestConcept not retained
73.$15 millionTanzaniaDry tropical forest, semi-arid grassland, desert, surface freshwaterConcept not retained
74.$6 millionMalawi, TanzaniaSemi-arid shrubs arid grasslandConcept not retained
75.$15 millionBenin, SenegalCoastalConcept not retained
76.$7 millionAll Sub-Saharan countriesAll eligible ecosystemsConcept not retained
77.$20 millionCameroon, Chad, NigeriaGrassland and watershedsConcept not retained

Eligibility criteria: $300 million envelope

In addition to meeting all other criteria of Canada’s $5.3 billion international climate finance program, proposals for Partnering for Climate funding must carry out the following:

  1. Demonstrate support for climate change adaptation as the principal objective (see: Project Coding - Policy Markers).
  2. Include biodiversity as a significant objective (see: Project Coding - Policy Markers).
  3. Include at least 1 gender equality outcome at the immediate outcome level (namely GE-1, to achieve a change in skills, awareness, or knowledge that contributes to gender equality – see Feminist International Assistance Gender Equality - Toolkit for Projects). For the $20 million earmarked funding for programming at the intersection of women’s rights and climate adaptation, preference will be given to projects that achieve a GE-3 coding and integrate a feminist approach consistent with the FIAP.

Further instructions on coding are provided below.

Project size and timelines: Global Affairs Canada is seeking projects in the range of $15 million to $40 million over fiscal years 2021/22 to 2025/26 for this funding envelope. An exception to the $15-million minimum project size will be made for programming in women's rights and climate change adaptation as described in the section on earmarked funding, where projects of $5 million or more will be considered.

Country eligibility: To qualify for Partnering for Climate funding, proposed NbS projects must take place exclusively in sub-Saharan African countries (including those identified as Small Island Developing States) that are eligible for official development assistance.Footnote i Projects can be single-country, multi-country or regional (for example, focused on transboundary ecosystems like river basins, wetlands, coastlines, grasslands and/or savannas).

Program level outcomes: All Partnering for Climate-funded projects must align with Canada’s $5.3 billion International Climate Finance Program Logic Model outcomes:

Note: You may refine these intermediate and immediate outcome statements to ensure they are grounded in the reality of your project design, making them more specific in terms of your project’s who, what and where factors. Please refer to Results-based management for international assistance programming: A how-to guide to ensure that your outcome statements respect Global Affairs Canada’s definition of intermediate and immediate outcomes.

Earmarked funding: Advancing women’s rights and climate adaptation

Within Partnering for Climate funding, at least $20 million of the $300 million allocated will focus on advancing women’s rights and climate change adaptation. These projects will involve women’s organizations in developing countries.

Projects could include:

  • promoting women’s economic empowerment in nature-based solutions (NbS) value chains for climate change adaptation
  • supporting women’s meaningful participation in climate-resilience policy and decision-making processes
  • empowering women in the design, implementation and scale-up of climate change adaptation NbS

Gender equality coding note: Under this earmarked $20 million, in addition to achieving policy marker coding of CC-2 and BD-1, preference will be given to women’s rights and climate change adaptation projects that achieve gender equality policy marker coding of gender-equality-3 (GE-3).

Other objectives for the $300 million envelope

In addition to the overall climate finance program eligibility (which is aligned with the FIAP) and the coding requirements described below, Global Affairs Canada may give preference to projects that respond to the following objectives:

Environmental coding requirements

All Partnering for Climate proposals will need to include a robust environmental analysis and demonstrate that they are informed by a vulnerability assessment that captures both climate change and biodiversity. Projects should also align with host government priorities and clearly reflect their planned solution(s) and expected results in the theory of change and results framework.

To conduct a vulnerability assessment, project proponents need to consult with the people and organizations that have an interest or stake in the project.  In particular, they need to make special efforts to involve people who are particularly vulnerable or excluded from normal decision-making processes, including:

These traditionally marginalized groups must be reached, heard and have their views reflected when determining what adaptation priorities should be and what solutions are best for addressing them.

Each proposal will also need to meet the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development- Development Assistance Committee Rio Convention marker requirements of “principal” for climate change adaptation (namely CC-2) and a minimum of “significant” for biodiversity conservation (BD-1).  See below for a summary of Global Affairs Canada’s coding requirements for climate change adaptation and biodiversity projects.

Global Affairs Canada climate change adaptation coding requirements

Climate change adaptation “principal” projects are initiatives whose principal purpose is to reduce climatic vulnerability. Accordingly:

Definition: Global Affairs Canada will classify activities as being related to climate change adaptation if they intend to reduce the vulnerability of human or natural systems to the impacts of climate change and climate-related risks, by maintaining or increasing adaptive capacity and resilience. This encompasses a range of activities from information and knowledge generation, to capacity development, planning and the implementation of climate change adaptation actions.

Eligibility criteria

* Note: Unlike climate mitigation initiatives (where tonnes of greenhouse gas reduced and/or avoided is a basic metric), there is no single universal climate change adaptation indicator. Indicators need to capture elements like the (qualitative) level of climate vulnerability, number of people affected, climatic importance of policies and so forth.

Global Affairs Canada biodiversity coding requirements

Biodiversity “significant” projects are initiatives that explicitly support biodiversity through at least 1 intermediate and 1 or more immediate outcomes, with corresponding indicators to measure results.

Definition: Global Affairs Canada will classify activities as biodiversity-related if they promote at least 1 of the 3 objectives of the Rio Convention on Biological Diversity: the conservation of biodiversity, the sustainable use of its components (ecosystems, species or genetic resources), or fair and equitable sharing of the benefits of the utilization of genetic resources.

Eligibility criteria

The initiative meets 1 or more of the following eligibility criteria:

Coding

For more information on the eligibility criteria, please refer to the OECD DAC Rio Markers for Climate: Handbook and Global Affairs Canada’s Climate Change Policy Markers.

Gender equality coding requirements

In accordance with Canada’s Feminist International Assistance Policy and the Government of Canada’s commitment to ensure that 80% of climate finance programming is gender integrated, projects submitted for Partnering for Climate funding must obtain at least a gender equality-1, or GE-1, code (partially integrated). This means that there is at least 1 gender equality result at the immediate outcome level in the logic model that will achieve a measurable change in skills, awareness, or knowledge that will contribute to gender equality. These outcomes must be reflected in the project’s theory of change and performance measurement framework.

However, to better reflect Canada’s commitment to gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls, preference may be given to projects that go beyond a GE-1 policy marker and strive for a gender equality-2 (GE-2), code or higher. GE-2 coded projects must have outcomes that show observable changes in behaviour, practice, access or performance at the intermediate outcome level. These results will contribute to stronger gender equality outcomes and deeper gender equality integration. It is important to remember that for a project to be coded GE-2, it is essential that at least 1 intermediate outcome be a gender equality outcome and that all of these results are reflected in the associated result chains, theory of change and the performance measurement framework.

Please refer to Canada’s gender equality toolkit for feminist international assistance for more information.

Some of the basics

What is climate change adaptation?

In biology, adaptation refers to the process by which living organisms adjust to the environments that they live in to improve their chances of survival.

Adaptation to climate change refers to adjustments that people need to make in ecological, social, economic and other systems, and the processes, practices and structures people use in their lives, to respond to the impacts of climate change that are already happening and to prepare for future impacts.

Recognized impacts from climate change include, for example, more frequent and more damaging pest and disease infestations, floods, storms, droughts, heat waves and fires.

Adaptation projects aim to reduce the vulnerability of people and their communities to climate change. The amount of vulnerability that exists depends on biophysical exposure, socio-economic sensitivity and adaptive capacity.

Biophysical exposure

This is the type, frequency, severity and scale of exposure to climate-change related impacts on the world and its people. This includes impacts from both relatively fast-hitting, extreme events like typhoons, hurricanes, floods and droughts as well as impacts from things that happen slowly but have cumulative and long-term effects—like sea-level rise, reductions in freshwater availability, losses of local plants and wild animals, and changing temperature and rain patterns.

Socio-economic sensitivity

This is the amount and quality of the physical and social capital to which people and communities have access. Physical capital refers to both the built parts of communities on which people depend, including infrastructure like buildings, roads and bridges, and natural land and water ecosystems that enable activities like agriculture, forestry and fisheries. Social capital refers to the connections that people rely on.  These include social networks, social safety nets to ensure access to food and cash in times of crisis, and other ways in which people build mutual trust.

Adaptive capacity

This is the current or potential ability of people and systems to adapt to the impacts of climate change (without having to resort to unsustainable practices like selling off assets or having a spouse move elsewhere for work). Examples of things that increase adaptive capacity include access to climate and weather forecasting information, support to prevent damage and recover from disasters, more diverse and resilient food systems, climate-sensitive land and water management and strong local, national and regional institutions whose mandates include supporting climate change adaptation.

While all countries are vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, some countries—including Small Island Developing States—are more vulnerable than others (see ReliefWeb’s Climate Change Vulnerability Index 2017).  As well, there are often significant local differences in climate vulnerability within a country.  It is also the case that, in general, marginalized people and communities, including women, girls, Indigenous Peoples, people living in extreme poverty and others with limited access to decision-making, rights and resources, are more climate vulnerable than other members of the societies in which they live.

The impacts of climate change differ from place to place and person to person and will evolve over time. For this reason, adaptation solutions need to respond to the unique contexts of the individuals, communities and countries in which they are applied. They also need to reflect regionally specific climate forecasts like those provided by the U.S government’s Climate Prediction Center. For this reason, a vulnerability assessment is required for all climate change adaptation proposals.

Similarly, success in climate change adaptation planning and solutions also requires that project proponents involve, are guided by and secure the engagement and support of:

Respecting and learning from Indigenous approaches

Indigenous communities have spiritual, cultural, social and economic connections with lands and resources. Many have developed ways to mitigate and adapt to the impacts of climate change while respecting and protecting the natural environment. Indigenous Peoples around the world often act as stewards of the environment, sharing their traditional ways and knowledge.

In addition to the $300 million of funding to support NbS for adaptation in Sub-Saharan Africa, a further $15 million will be available to support Indigenous Peoples in Canada to partner with Indigenous Peoples in developing countries (including but not limited to Sub-Saharan Africa) to achieve their climate action objectives. Please see the 2022 call for concept notes—Indigenous Peoples Partnering for Climate (international.gc.ca).

Climate change adaptation in Sub-Saharan Africa

Relative to 1970−79, the frequency of droughts in Sub-Saharan Africa nearly tripled by 2010−19, it has more than quadrupled for storms, and it has increased more than tenfold in the case of floods.”

Source: World Bank Group’s Africa’s Pulse, Climate Change Adaptation and Economic Transformation in Sub-Saharan Africa, volume 24, October 2021, p.57.

The African Union’s Agenda 2063: The AFRICA We Want recognizes climate change as a major challenge for the continent’s development.  The impacts of climate change in Africa, including rising temperatures and sea levels, changing rain patterns and more extreme weather, are rolling back decades of development advances while contributing to food insecurity, the increased potential for conflict over resources, poor health outcomes, population displacement and stress on water resources.Footnote iii This is particularly harmful to women and girls across the continent who are more vulnerable than men and boys to these changes. In 2021, Sub-Saharan Africa faced devastating floods, invasions of desert locusts and widespread drought, with the human and economic toll exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.  For the foreseeable future, the impacts of climate change will continue to harm the social, cultural and economic well-being of millions across the continent.  Because of its location and challenging economic circumstances, Sub-Saharan Africa as a region (including its Small Island Developing States) is disproportionately at risk from these impacts, with its most vulnerable communities and groups, including women and girls, being the hardest hit.

In general, most countries in Sub-Saharan Africa also face serious challenges in achieving their climate change objectives.  This is due to significant limits on the human, financial, and technical resources that countries can mobilize as they try to achieve multiple social and economic development objectives while dealing with increasingly damaging and disruptive impacts of climate change.  These challenges are exacerbated by the urgent need to address COVID-19, poverty and conflict, and to continue to promote women’s empowerment and leadership (two pillars within Agenda 2063). This makes it all the more important that Canada help address the funding gap facing the region’s governments, communities and people in their efforts to adapt to climate change.  Many of these efforts are described in their Nationally Determined Contributions  and National Adaptation Plans, as well as in the African Union Green Recovery Action Plan 2021-2027 and other continental programs.

Some of the ways that Sub-Saharan African countries, communities and people are adapting to the impacts of climate change include building flood defences (for example, by sea walls) and drought management systems, setting up early warning systems for extreme weather, and establishing community shelters and cooling centres.  Many Sub-Saharan African farmers are changing which crops they grow and how they grow them.  Similarly, pastoralists are changing how they manage their livestock. Some of these climate change adaptations, and many others being applied at the local level, are particularly well suited to integrating NbS.

Climate trends across Sub-Saharan Africa

From north to south—from the Sahara Desert to the coastal forests of Eastern Africa —the African continent is widely recognized as a hot spot for climate variability and climate change impacts.Footnote iv Sub-Saharan Africa needs an estimated USD$30 billion to US$50 billion each year until 2030 and beyond to support climate change adaptation.Footnote v In Western Africa and the Sahel, water availability is a particular challenge, with extreme weather events such as droughts leading to humanitarian crises associated with periodic famines, food insecurity, population displacement, migration and conflict and insecurity.Footnote vi Central Africa, for the most part, is landlocked, with high climate variability and dependency on rain-fed agriculture. It is a part of Africa that is expected to experience longer and more frequent heat waves and an increase in both too much and too little rainfall.Footnote vii In Eastern Africa, warming temperatures and changing rain patterns are expected to decrease the productivity of both subsistence and cash crops, which remain a critical source of livelihoods and economic activity across the region.Footnote viii Finally, changing climate conditions are putting much of Southern Africa’s unique and diverse terrestrial, freshwater and coastal ecosystems, and forests—which cover 41% of the total land area of the 16 Southern African Development Community member states —at risk.

Climate change adaptation nature-based solutions

Nature-based solutions are actions to protect, sustainably manage and restore natural or modified ecosystems. These solutions address societal challenges effectively and adaptively while providing human well-being and biodiversity benefits (see Nature-based solutions – International Union for the Conservation of Nature).

In the case of Partnering for Climate, NbS are “solutions” for the challenges of climate change adaptation. In other words, by supporting and enhancing the benefits that nature and natural systems provide, NbS can:

For example, a coastal mangrove restoration project can help protect local communities from tidal surges, increase bird and fish populations and provide natural resources that can be harvested for sale.

However, NbS are not a substitute for the changes needed in international, national, business and individual behaviours and structures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions quickly and permanently and to increase people’s resiliency to the impacts of climate change. For NbS to be truly successful, they must be accompanied by just, inclusive and environmentally sustainable social, cultural, economic and other systems.

Climate change adaptation nature-based solutions: Governance

In Sub-Saharan Africa, many climate change adaptation-targeted NbS will focus on:

Each of these ecosystems is important in different ways to various members of society. Similarly, NbS are particularly important to the lives of marginalized and vulnerable people, including women, girls and Indigenous People. They are disproportionately affected by climate change, and at the same time, have essential knowledge and leadership roles to play in informing, designing, and implementing climate change solutions.

It is for these reasons that GAC supports the IUCN Global Standard for NbS and its emphasis on inclusive, transparent and empowering governance processes.  These include appropriate consultations and participatory processes enabling effective local participation and leadership in project design, implementation and monitoring and/or evaluation.

This rights-based, gender-responsive and intersectional approach also reflects the commitment of Canada’s Feminist International Assistance Policy to support the poorest and most vulnerable and to amplify the voices—as well as the traditional and ecological knowledge—of all groups.  This includes but is not limited to Indigenous Peoples, local grassroots organizations and women’s rights organizations.

Biodiversity

Biological diversity (biodiversity) refers to the variety of life at genetic, species and ecosystem levels including terrestrial, marine and other aquatic ecosystems and the ecological systems of which they are a part.  This includes diversity within species, between species and of ecosystems. Biodiversity is also what enables ecosystems to flourish as different species live and work across various interconnected ecosystems to maintain natural balance. When biodiversity is reduced or otherwise harmed, ecosystems become less resilient and the ecosystem services on which human and other species depend can be reduced or lost altogether.

Canada has committed to allocate at least 20% of its $5.3 billion in climate finance to projects that leverage nature-based climate solutions and contribute to biodiversity co-benefits. This acknowledges that climate change is one of the key drivers of biodiversity loss and that protecting, conserving and restoring biodiversity are crucial to addressing climate change.  As such, all NbS projects receiving Partnering for Climate funding will need to explicitly support biodiversity conservation or enhancement while still being principally focused on climate change adaptation.

The section below provides examples of NbS that are focused on climate change adaptation.  These NbS all increase the resiliency of people, places and things to impacts of climate change. At the same time, they improve conditions for biodiversity and provide economic livelihood opportunities.  For specific examples of outcomes of climate change adaptation associated with terrestrial, forest and coastal ecosystems, see Annex.

Nature-based climate solutions with biodiversity co-benefits in Sub-Saharan Africa

Gender-responsive climate change adaptation nature-based solutions

Climate change and biodiversity loss disproportionately affect women and girls.Footnote xi However, because of the essential roles they play in their families and communities, women and girls also have valuable knowledge and leadership capabilities that can help advance locally suited adaptation approaches. For this reason, all projects funded by Partnering for Climate- must be gender responsive by deliberately acknowledging and addressing gender norms and structures that marginalize the voices of vulnerable groups, including women and girls.

In the context of NbS for climate change adaptation, gender power dynamics are often most apparent in areas of decision-making and leadership, access to and control over natural resources (for example,  land titling and tenure), access to finance, and household and social responsibilities.

To be considered gender responsive, Partnering for Climate projects should:

Nature-based climate solutions that are gender responsive in sub-Saharan Africa

Annex: Examples of outcomes of climate change adaptation

To understand some of the different ways to describe climate change adaptation program outcomes, please see the following examples based on the Guidebook for Monitoring and Evaluating Ecosystem-based Adaptation Interventions, published by the Government of Germany.

Terrestrial, forest and coastal outcomes from climate change adaptation programs

Terrestrial (agricultural and pastoral land)

Outcomes:

Forests (restoration, protection and new forests)

Outcomes:

Coastal (e.g. fisheries, coral reefs, mangroves)

Outcomes:

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