Protecting Food Security through Adaptation to Climate Change - Phase 1

Protecting food security through adaptation to climate change: Phase 1

This project is part of Live & Learn’s ongoing programme on climate change adaptation in the Pacific seeking to deliver low cost, community based adaptation activities that are easy to scale up in remote island locations. The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) reports that climate change is already affecting communities in small island states and climate variations and extremes have disrupted food production, water supply and economies. Climate change projections for the future, although coarse for islands, are bleak and indicate reduced food security, especially at household level. In the Pacific, adaptation to these changes is constrained by low local capacity, lack of access to information and lack of innovative and appropriate technologies. Poor environmental management of forests, marine resources and wetlands have lowered small islands’ resilience in dealing with climate change and have placed many remote and low-lying communities at great risk and vulnerability.

This project is seeking change in two areas:

  • Protecting local food supplies, assets and livelihoods against the effects of increasing weather variability and increased frequency and intensity of extreme weather events including natural disasters and sea level rise; and
  • Protecting ecosystems and strengthen the provision of environmental services (food).

This Project will benefit 18 communities (estimated 24,000 people) in the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu and Papua New Guinea. Target groups are smallholder farmers (both men and women) and ultimate beneficiaries are communities at large. The selection of target islands and local populations has been done in close consultation with the relevant government department in each of the three target countries and links in with the National Adaptation Programme for Action (NAPA). The project will be implemented by a consortium of Live & Learn in Australia (lead agency), Live & Learn PNG, Live & Learn Solomon Islands and Live & Learn Vanuatu.

The project has been designed by Live & Learn in close consultation with beneficiaries, targets groups including relevant government departments and the Secretariat Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP). This was done through two design workshops held in the target countries on the 22 and 23rd of August 2009 and consultation meetings with government counterparts and the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) at the COP15 meeting in Copenhagen December 2009. The purpose of these design workshops was to confirm relevance of activities and ensure full participation of target groups and stakeholders and set realistic goals and timeframes. The design workshops were guided by eight fundamental principles developed to minimize risks and ensure impact and sustainability:

  1. Build on local strengths, leadership and ownership, and support and strengthen existing systems and structures;
  2. Promote an inclusive society through inclusive, equitable implementation;
  3. Build up the relationship, accountability and engagement between governments and smallholder farmers;
  4. Deliver visible results, in rural areas, in the short term;
  5. Avoid over engineering, set realistic timeframes, ensure predictability;
  6. Develop and promote programmatic approaches and ensure activity is fully embedded in national NAPA;
  7. Promote mutual accountability, disciplined and responsible partners; and
  8. Promote coordination and harmonisation with other funded programs in the Pacific.