On 8 November during COP26 in Glasgow, the Asian Development Bank (ADB), in partnership with the Government of United Kingdom, and the Nordic Development Fund established the Community Resilience Partnership Program (CRPP). Operationalized through a financing partnership facility, the CRPP aims to support ADB’s developing member countries scale up investments in climate adaptation at the community level, especially through investments that address the nexus between poverty, gender and climate.
In this Q&A, ADB Principal Climate Change Specialist Arghya Sinha Roy outlines the key priorities of the CRPP and how it can play a critical role in scaling up climate actions at the local level in Asia and the Pacific region.
1. What is the CRPP and why it is important?
The CRPP is a partnership program to support ADB’s developing member countries scale up investments at the local level for climate adaptation, which is really important work. It means things like supporting agricultural communities to diversify livelihoods and build new skills; engaging coastal communities in mangrove plantation to reduce the impacts of coastal hazards; and making women’s groups a stronger part of decision-making processes on climate adaptation. Climate adaptation at community level is so important because the adverse impacts of climate change are manifested largely at the local level due to the local socioeconomic, ecological, institutional and governance characteristics. So, a solution needs to explicitly respond to the needs of poor and vulnerable populations.
The CRPP is important for three reasons. First, poor and vulnerable population are disproportionately impacted by climate change and require targeted support. Second, the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the underlying drivers of vulnerabilities and the need to build resilience of the poor to multiple shocks. Third, limited climate adaptation finance is flowing to the local level to support the needs of the most vulnerable communities. So, there is an urgent need to address these issues by focusing on climate adaptation solutions at the nexus of poverty, gender and climate and ensure climate finance not only reaches the local level but that it responds to local needs. So that’s the focus of the CRPP.
2. How will the CRPP be operationalized and what will it support?
The CRPP will be operationalized through a financing partnership facility, which will include a multi-donor trust fund. The trust fund will provide technical assistance related support for (i) knowledge and action research on scaling up climate adaptation solutions as part of poverty reduction policies and programs; (ii) institutional strengthening capacity building to develop and deliver climate adaptation investments at community level; and (iii) preparation of projects. Examples of projects include adaptive social protection, diversification of livelihoods of rural farmers, revitalizing natural drainage solutions in urban informal settlements.
The CRPP will also provide grant resources to governments and communities to pilot innovative solution on climate adaptation at the community level.
3. The CRPP has a big focus on gender. Why is this important and how it will work in practice?
We know that poor women and girls are impacted differently by climate change compared to men and boys. That’s because climate change exacerbates pre-existing gender inequalities. At the same time, evidence shows that at the community level, women are often leading resilience strategies. Women are showing leadership as beneficiaries of government’s pro-poor development programs; as active members of community-based organizations working closely with local governments, civil society organizations and the private sector; and leading women’s organizations in tackling climate adaptation efforts.
So, it is important for women to be recognized as agents of change, and for dedicated investments to reflect that fact. The CRPP aims to do this by having a dedicated gender window under the trust fund. That will help support women-focused resilience building by (i) providing technical assistance to support the development of community-level climate adaptation solutions where the primary stakeholders are women; and (ii) supporting grant component of investment projects for implementation of such solutions. This support will be in addition to gender mainstreaming which will be undertaken through all the other CRPP-related support.
4. How will the CRPP promote partnerships?
Partnerships are at the heart of the CRPP. A range of financing partners including the Nordic Development Fund and the Government of United Kingdom, and ADB have come together to establish the program. This ensures countries have access to technical support to identify and develop investments and potential access to financing such investments. Second, the CRPP will promote partnerships with research organizations and civil society organizations. The International Institute for Environment and Development, which is a global policy research organization, and the Huairou Commission, a global network of grassroots women’s organization. are key knowledge partners of the CRPP. Third, at the country level, a key focus of the CRPP will be to strengthen partnerships between local governments, community-based organizations and local private sectors to collectively identify, prioritize, and implement climate adaptation solutions.
5. How will the CRPP contribute to ADB’s climate finance ambition?
The CRPP is expected to play a critical role in achieving ADB’s climate adaptation ambition, particularly with ensuring our investments in social development, human development, livelihoods, and financial inclusion systematically address climate risk and explore opportunities for building community resilience. ADB is Asia and the Pacific's climate bank and we are committed to ensuring our knowledge, financing, technical assistance, and partnerships play a leading role for Asia and the Pacific in the battle against climate change.