The Africa Adaptation Project Namibia (AAP NAM) was officially launched in February 2010 and is part of a wider adaptation programme for 20 African countries, entitled “Supporting Integrated and Comprehensive Approaches to Climate Change Adaptation in Africa”. The Namibian Government, in collaboration with UNDP and funded by Government of Japan, is implementing a component of the global Africa Adaptation Project, entitled “Building the foundation for a national approach to Climate Change Adaptation in Namibia”, to address climate change risks under each of the five AAP Global Programme outputs.
The AAP NAM aims to build effective leadership and institutional frameworks in Namibia for better coordination and integration of climate change programmes into development policy. Support to local community climate change initiatives and priority sectors such as sanitation and health is further provided. The project is also assisting the government to identify financing options that will allow it to meet long-term national adaptation costs and to expand knowledge management systems and information sharing.
- Dynamic long term planning mechanisms to cope with the inherent uncertainties of climate change introduced, with a focus on managing flood risk
- Namibian leadership and institutional frameworks to manage climate change risks and opportunities in an integrated manner strengthened, including a decentralised approach
- Climate resilient policies and measures in priority sectors implemented (flooding and settlement/sanitation and health) and promoting community-based adaptation action
- Financing options to meet national adaptation costs expanded at the local and national level and building on Investment and Financial Flows (I&FF) work ongoing
- Knowledge on adjusting national development processes to fully incorporate climate change risks and opportunities generated and shared across all levels
Improved adaptive capacities will help Namibia to reduce expected economic and developmental losses that will occur as a result of disaster driven by climate change. The ability of African countries to build climate resilience into their national development plans will be a major factor in their effort to achieve and sustain the implementation of the Millennium Development Goals—to reduce hunger and poverty, improve the empowerment of women and the health of mothers, reduce child mortality, reduce the spread of contagious diseases, improve environmental sustainability and increase levels of education.
Although developing countries such as Namibia contribute very little to global greenhouse gas emissions, these countries are highly vulnerable to climate change because they have least ability to cope with the uncertainty of this global phenomenon.
The government, development partners and donor community have recognised the importance of climate change adaptation. Namibia has started to react to climate change risks through a number of initiatives and a certain level of institutional and human capacities are in place.
However, it is understood that the overall climate change risk will be much higher in magnitude than currently planned for. Major investments into institutional and policy development will be required to meet these needs in future. A key concern is that local communities need to be better supported to develop adaptive mechanisms.