Adaptation to climate change

© GIZ/Thomas Imo

Adapting to climate change can help to avoid risk and seize opportunities. Germany supports its partner countries in adaptation projects.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) warns of the serious consequences of climate change. With the Paris Climate Agreement of 2015, the international community of states for the first time committed itself to reducing global warming to well below two degrees, if possible even to 1.5 degrees. The risks and impacts of climate change must be reduced. At the same time, the ability to adapt to climate change must be strengthened.

However, even if the transition to a low-carbon economy is successful, developing and emerging countries in particular will continue to suffer from extreme weather events such as droughts and floods. The danger of slow changes such as rising temperatures and increasing water scarcity has not been averted either. That is why adaptation to climate change is anchored in the Paris Climate Convention as an equal goal alongside climate protection.

Adaptation to climate change avoids or mitigates the negative effects of climate change. Adaptation also means exploiting the potential of climate change, for example by adapting agricultural production to changing conditions. Adaptation is of paramount importance for developing countries, which suffer particularly from the effects of climate change.

There is a broad consensus that the consequences of climate change should be systematically taken into account in all sectors of society. Adaptation is often seen as part of comprehensive climate risk management and of societal and economic change.

The Paris agreements can only be fulfilled if states cooperate closely, both technically and financially. Germany, together with other states, development banks and multilateral organisations, has therefore launched several initiatives to implement the agreement in developing countries:

- The global "NDC Partnership" advocates concrete climate relief and promotes the coordinated implementation of national contributions in the areas of mitigation and adaptation.

- The National Adaptation Plan (NAP) Global Network promotes national adaptation planning through consultation, exchange and coordination of donor programmes.

- The "InsuResilience" initiative aims to give an additional 400 million poor people access to insurance against extreme weather events by 2020.

On behalf of the Federal Government, GIZ supports climate protection and adaptation to climate change in partner countries. It advises governments, supports climate adaptation projects in politics and individual sectors and promotes climate risk management.