Technical Advice and Training on offer from the Global Climate Change Alliance (GCCA)
In just over five years of operation, the Global Climate Change Alliance (GCCA) has grown to support more than forty programmes in Africa, the Caribbean, Asia and the Pacific. GCCA countries and ACP member states that may be looking for technical assistance to support the design and implementation of their climate change policies, strategies and interventions are reminded that advice and training is on offer, through both the GCCA Support Facility and the intra-ACP component of the GCCA.
The GCCA is the European Union initiative that was set up in 2007 to act as a platform for dialogue and exchange of experience between the EU and developing countries on climate policy. It also provides technical and financial support to partner countries to integrate climate change into their development policies and budgets, and to implement measures that address climate change on the ground, promoting climate-resilient, low-emission development.
Assistance is provided in five priority areas. “This covers mainstreaming of climate change into poverty reduction and development policies,” said Dr Mark Futter, Team Leader of the GCCA Support Facility, “adaptation, where we notably focus on the water and agricultural sectors; we also focus on assisting countries access the carbon markets, which is a specific challenge as there is funding available, but there is limited capacity to access it because the procedures are quite complex and specialist," he continued. "We provide support within disaster risk reduction (DRR), to help countries address the changing risks associated with climate change that can feed into improving the DRR policies and practices.The final priority area is reducing emissions fromdeforestation and land degradation (REDD), where we notably help countries prepare for REDD plus.”
By the end of this year, the GCCA will be funding 47 climate programmes with an overall envelope of nearly €290 million, and is moving towards a second phase of GCCA, known as GCCA+ (plus).
Whilst this is in process, the initiative welcomes further requests for technical assistance and training. The GCCA Support Facility offers on-going technical assistance to all regions for the identification, forumlation and now implementation and preliminary evaluation of GCCA funded interventions, while the Intra-ACP component of the GCCA focuses on on-demand technical advice and training in how ACP countries can manage the adverse effects of climate change.
“The type of services that the Intra-ACP GCCA programme offers are short-term technical assistance on policy development, feasibility studies, identification projects and so on, and the second component is capacity building,” said Dr Pendo Maro, the Technical Assistant on Climate Change to the ACP Secretariat in Brussels. “At present we are doing capacity building in terms of training in mainstreaming climate change into development and other policies, and training on how to access climate change financing. Another part of the service is information dissemination,” she added.
So who is eligible for this assistance? “Government institutions,universities, NGOs, civil society organisations, the private sector in ACP countries can apply," advised Dr Maro, “But in order for your request to qualify, it has to be part of the five priorities of the GCCA.”
Once a country has identified its needs within the priority areas, it can apply for the assistance through www.gcca.eu or www.gcca.eu/fr, and on the capacity4dev.eu GCCA Community Forum. “Then together we work to develop the Terms of Reference. We identify objectives, tasks and outcomes and develop a work programme,” said Dr Maro.
The ACP’s dedicated Climate Support Facility ensures implementation of the mission. In collaboration with the beneficiary and the ACP Secretariat, it will help select the right expert to carry out the mission. When completed, the mission is evaluated.
“From the start of implementation, we have completed missions in Africa, Caribbean and Pacific countries, and demand is now coming in - for example, from the Caribbean, West Africa, the Comoros and Pacific. There has been good interest in the programme; however, we have the capacity to offer more services,” said Dr. Maro.
“We have completed nine missions and there are more on-going,” she smiled, “but could do much, much more.”
Capacity development is a key component of the GCCA’s work. “We held our Global Learning Event in September last year, and it is clear that the climate change challenge is one on a long list of challenges that these countries face and all of these countries have limited capacities,“ said Dr Mark Futter. “There are people in government and other organizations that we work with who have many responsibilities, so it is a capacity development issue in terms of people on the ground and also an issue on their technical training and technical information to help them address the challenges responding to the impacts of climate change,” he continued.
“The services that the GCCA Support Facility offers at the moment include implementation support to existing programmes, where we can send people on the ground to help,“ said Dr. Futter. “We can also help with remote support as well - if you have a policy document or strategy document that needs reviewing or you want some comments upon, we can provide that support," he added.“We can also provide support to participants of previous mainstreaming workshops.”
As GCCA programmes start to mature and the early starters come to an end, the Support Facility is also available to undertake monitoring, lesson learning and preliminary evaluation missions. These will facilitate knowledge management, support future programming and inform the development of GCCA+. Contact with Dr Futter can be made via the GCCA website and the capacity4dev.eu GCCA Community Forum pages.