Call for Action Seeks to Raise Ambition on Adaptation and Resilience
UN Photo/Logan Abassi
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The Call to Action states that “equal and increased urgency” must be given to adaptation to impacts and to building resilience for the future.

It warns that while the true costs of adaptation in developing countries could amount to USD 300 billion per year by 2030, there are “substantial benefits to be gained from acting now”.

24 September 2019: Ahead of the Secretary-General’s Climate Action Summit, co-leads of the Resilience and Adaptation Coalition, Egypt and the UK, with coalition partners, Bangladesh, Malawi, the Netherlands and Saint Lucia, supported by the UN Development Programme (UNDP), issued a Call for Action on Adaptation and Resilience, advocating for a vision that puts adaptation at the center of decision making.

As of 23 September, the Call for Action has been supported by 112, mostly developing, countries, 16 UN agencies and international financial institutions and 68 organizations.

We must step up efforts to close the gap in adaptive capacity and financing, and to remove the barriers that hinder the uptake of knowledge and technology.

Recognizing that adaptation action is not keeping pace with the scale of climate change impacts, which is such that business-as-usual (BAU) “is no longer an option for any country, community, business or financial institution,” the Call to Action states that “equal and increased urgency” must be given to adaptation to impacts and to building resilience for the future. It warns that while the true costs of adaptation in developing countries could amount to USD 300 billion per year by 2030, there are “substantial benefits to be gained from acting now.” “We must step up efforts to close the gap in adaptive capacity and financing, and to remove the barriers that hinder the uptake of knowledge and technology,” the Call notes.

The Call envisions a climate-resilient future where adaptation is placed at the core of decision making, immediate action is taken to protect people, economies and the environment and no person is left behind by the impacts of climate change.

The Call urges for enhanced adaptation and resilience action in three areas:

  • Acting now to respond to immediate climate impacts and to support the most vulnerable members of society, including by: scaling up disaster readiness and response capacity and improving access to climate risk insurance; intensifying efforts to increase food and water security; and prioritizing regional and country-owned approaches, especially in small island developing States (SIDS) and least developed countries (LDCs);
  • Building resilient futures by putting climate risk at the center of decision making, including by: integrating adaptation and resilience into long-term planning; increasing the resilience of economies and financial systems by integrating climate risk into investment decision making and business planning; and accelerating transition to resilient land use and ecosystems; and
  • Urgently increasing the availability of adaptation and resilience finance.

Progress towards the Call’s goals will be assessed in the margins of the 25th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 25) to the UNFCCC and COP 26, including progress achieved through the various initiatives launched at the Climate Action Summit. The 2020 Global Adaptation Action Summit and the Year of Action launched by the Global Commission on Adaptation (GCA) will also serve as opportunities to further accelerate adaptation action. [A Call for Action: Raising Ambition for Climate Adaptation and Resilience] [Climate Action Summit Press Release] [UNDP Climate Change Adaptation Press Release] [SDG Knowledge Hub Story on Climate Action Summit] [SDG Knowledge Hub Story on GCA Report on Financing Adaptation]


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