Climate change and land use in ASEAN

Project description

Project title: Climate Smart Land Use in ASEAN
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Countries: Regional, South-East Asia
Lead executing agency: ASEAN Secretariat
Overall term: 2018 to 2020


As major producers of agricultural products and the location of extensive forest landscapes, countries in South-East Asia are highly vulnerable to the effects of climate change. A large section of the region’s population depends on agriculture, fishing and forestry for their livelihoods. At the same time, these countries are crucial actors in reducing greenhouse gas emissions caused by deforestation and forest degradation, and by certain agricultural practices. 

The members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) have committed to address the challenges of food security and climate change in the agriculture and forestry sectors. ASEAN has demonstrated that it can perform a major role as a mediator between international and national climate policy processes. However, the ASEAN Member States (AMS) and ASEAN working groups still face major challenges in implementing climate-related targets and action plans agreed at regional and at national level. Additionally, ASEAN’s international engagement needs to be supported further in order to develop joint policy positions and increase the visibility of the contribution of member states to climate change mitigation and adaptation in agriculture and forestry.


ASEAN bodies successfully coordinate regional contributions to international and national climate-policy processes for climate-smart land use. This helps member states to build resilience and adapt to climate change. 


This project has identified the following priority areas:

  • Improve cooperation among the member states in agriculture and forestry. 
  • Improve cooperation between member states in international climate-policy processes in this area. 
  • Enhance synergies among ASEAN sectoral working groups dealing with issues of climate change and land use.

To attain these objectives the project supports ASEAN in facilitating an exchange of information and knowledge of climate-smart land use within and between different stakeholder groups, such as ASEAN working groups, the ASEAN Climate Resilience Network (ASEAN-CRN), decision-makers and practitioners from AMS, scientific institutions, civil society organisations and private companies working on land use and climate change in the region. It builds capacities for specific climate-smart practices in agriculture and forestry through workshops, training courses and communication and networking activities. It also facilitates the development of joint ASEAN positions on climate change and land use and their introduction into international forums such as the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. 

Together with working groups and networks, the project supports the development of guidelines and recommendations related to land use and climate change through ASEAN bodies and networks, and promotes their implementation in the member states. The project facilitates matchmaking between support needs in the countries and the support on offer for implementing climate-smart and climate-resilient approaches for land use. The project activities contribute to achievement of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development goals as well as the Paris Agreement.


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