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Mainstreaming climate change

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Fannie Delavelle3 November 2014

Climate change is inherently linked to all sectors of development and the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals. That means climate change needs to be a central, and not a peripheral consideration in national planning and development. This is the case for all countries, but it is particularly important for LDCs and SIDS, which often have fragile economies and face a range of different challenges with limited capacities to address them.

The GCCA is, therefore, committed to the practice of mainstreaming, which means embedding climate change into national and sector development planning and budgeting.

Mainstreaming is all about sustainability. It is a way of ensuring that partner countries are in a strong position to tackle the effects of climate change not just today, but for years to come. Climate change mainstreaming translates the principles of aid effectiveness into practice through the use of country agendas and systems and by supporting institutional strengthening and capacity building in the long term. Mainstreaming also helps partner countries prepare the ground for receiving future climate-related support in the form of budget support. In certain cases, such as Nepal, Vanuatu and the Pacific, GCCA programmes explicitly aim to create conditions to enable the delivery of future assistance for climate change through budget support. For example, they include governance and fiduciary risk assessments or activities aimed at strengthening public financial management. The Mainstreaming's guidelines "Integrating the environment and climate change into EU international cooperation and development" provide a framework for strenghtening the contribution of the European Union international cooperation and development policy to sustainable development by integrating, or mainstreaming environmental and climate change considerations into the different phases of the EU programme and project cycle.

Raising awareness and increasing capacities is also essential. The GCCA is spreading the word and passing on the tools and knowledge for successful mainstreaming through a range of initiatives at country and regional levels. These include country and regional programmes, as well as a series of workshops all over the world which bring together senior climate experts and budgetary planners from the ministries of partner countries. The workshops create a forum for people to exchange experience and knowledge about mainstreaming climate change and the tools to make it happen. The GCCA envisions a global effort to place climate change at the heart of national and regional policymaking and planning.

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