Connecting countries to climate technology solutions
English Arabic Chinese (Simplified) French Russian Spanish Yoruba

Convergence of disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation

Publication date:
T. Mitchell
Type of publication:
CTCN Keyword Matches:

Development faces a growing threat from climate change. Yet despite the significant overlap, the respective agendas of disaster risk reduction (DRR) and climate change adaptation (CCA) have been left to evolve independently up until now. Referring to the Bali Action Plan, the 2009 Copenhagen climate change negotiations and DFID’s evolving strategy as well as its forthcoming evaluation of DRR, this DFID White Paper explains how DRR is a crucial part of climate change adaptation, especially among the vulnerable communities.The objectives of the study are to:

establish if, why, and how DRR and adaptation policy should converge
identify the internal and external constraints, and incentives for convergence 
identify mechanisms for joint funding and programming of DRR and adaptation 
identify gaps to be addressed.

The paper states that despite sharing similarities and overlaps, there has been limited integration of DRR and adaptation; however, they are increasingly converging in the following ways:

in international agreements, government statements and policies and joint activities
in financial mechanisms
at the national level
in knowledge and practice
through other efforts via negotiations by experts, integrating climate information in humanitarian programmes.

The authors highlight the following obstacles and incentives to adaptation and DRR convergence:

there is poor communication between disaster management and climate change departments
the Hyogo Framework of Action which is used for justification is not legally binding outside the DRR community
donor governments are opposed to further integration of DRR and humanitarian assistance language in negotiation texts
there are obstacles in multi- and bi-lateral institutions, financing mechanisms, at the national scale and in sharing knowledge, experience and guidance.

Finally, the paper puts forward the following recommendations for DFID:

support the DRR community to engage in climate change negotiations more effectively
integrate DRR and adaptation in the guidance and delivery of respective funding mechanisms 
promote closer convergence of DRR and adaptation teams in bilateral, multilateral and civil society organisations 
support the generation of integrated knowledge, experience and guidance 
incentivise convergence in national governments and co-ordination mechanisms.