Negotiations are now underway at the UN Climate Conference in Marrakech, Morocco to see how the Adaptation Fund can serve the Paris Agreement.
The Adaptation Fund was established under the Kyoto Protocol, it finances projects and programmes to help developing countries adapt to climate change. Since 2010 it has committed USD 357 million in 63 countries, of these five are from the Pacific islands.
The Federated States of Micronesia received a 20,000 USD technical assistance grant, the Cook Islands an approved USD 5.3 million for a five year project that started in 2012, Papua New Guinea an approved USD 6.5 million for a four year project that began in 2012, Samoa an approved USD 8.7 million for a four year project that started in 2013 and Solomon Islands has an approved USD 5.5 million for a four year project which began in 2011.
"For the Pacific, we want to see the Adaptation Fund have a nice transition from the Kyoto Protocol into the Paris Agreement. If you look at the preambles of the Paris Agreement it very clearly states it has to build resilience and help parties adapt to the changes, these are both key issues for the Paris Agreement," said Mr Joe Aitaro of Palau.
Mr Aitaro is following the issue of Climate Finance along with other Pacific colleagues, at the Twenty-second Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC COP22).
"We don't want to see the Adaptation Fund slowly transition out."
The Adaptation Fund is financed in part by government and private donors. It also receives a 2% share of the proceeds of Certified Emission Reductions (CER) under the Kyoto Protocols Clean Development Mechanism Project yet since the fall of the carbon market in 2011 there is a challenge to its long-term financial sustainability which now relies more on voluntary government contributions.
According to the Climate Funds Update, the sale of the CER's has seen just under 200 USD Million deposited into the Adaptation Fund.
The Certified Emission Reductions stem from the Clean Development Mechanism, two initiatives under the Kyoto Protocol which has completed its first commitment period from 2008 to 2012 and is now awaiting for the second commitment period from 2013 to 2020 to come into force.
Known as the Doha Amendment, the second commitment period has, as of 9 November, 73 Parties that have deposited their instrument of acceptance, this includes eight of the 14 Pacific islands that are a party to the UNFCCC. In all, 144 Parties are needed for it to come into force, without this, there is no legal binding for the 2% input contribution from the CER's.
"We all talk about the need for more funds, but I really think we need to ratify the Doha Amendment because this is a pathway for us to get more funds. If we have more Pacific countries that have ratified this process, we will have that confidence when we negotiate that we're not just asking Parties to commit to something that we ourselves won't commit to," said Mr Aitaro.
"We'll be proud to come out and say we have all ratified the Doha Amendment, as we have done the Paris Agreement, and we really need the Adaptation Fund to transition into the Paris Agreement as it will and does serve us well."
The Adaptation Fund currently has a project pipeline totalling 200 USD million as well as an 80 USD million target for this year alone.
"The Fund has never been more in demand. It is delivering effectively on its mandate and is already serving the operationalisation of the Paris Agreement," said the Chair of the Adaptation Fund Board Mr Naresh Sharma in a speech before COP22 President H.E. Salaheddine Mezouar, Morocco's Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, and a plenary of country and observer group delegations.
"Our pioneering work on Direct Access is a factor leading to the increased demand. It represents a major advance in climate finance, is successfully built upon and replicated by other Funds and is making an essential contribution to national adaptation priorities."
Here in the Pacific islands, over 20 USD Million has come from the Adaptation fund to help communities from the Cook Islands, Papua New Guinea, Samoa and Solomon Islands address strengthening of resilience to climate change, food security and agriculture, strengthening of resilience of coastal communities and those that are impacted by floods.
The Pacific islands that have Accepted the Kyoto Protocol are the Federated States of Micronesia, Kiribati, Nauru, Palau, Republic of Marshall Islands, Samoa, Solomon Islands and Tuvalu, with plans by Vanuatu to Accept in December this year.
The Twenty-second Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC is held in Marrakech, Morocco from 7 to 18 November, 2016. - #4PacIslands
For more information on the Adaptation Fund please visit: https://www.adaptation-fund.org/
For more information on the Doha Amendment please visit: