WB Approves US$4.974 Million Grant for Climate Change Adaptation in the Philippines

June 29, 2010

MANILA, JUNE 29, 2010—The World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors approved a US$4.974 million grant for a pilot project called the Climate Change Adaptation Project (CCAP) designed to enable targeted rural communities cope with the impact of climate change.

Specifically, the project aims to develop and demonstrate cost-effective adaptation strategies in agriculture and natural resources management and strengthen the country’s institutional framework for climate change adaptation.

World Bank Country Director Bert Hofman said the project will enhance rural communities’ capacity to adapt to climate change by improving farm management capability under conditions of climate risk, enhancing access to information on weather forecasting and climate patterns, and improving access to risk management options such as weather index insurance, among others. “The primary beneficiaries of this grant include poor farmers who often suffer climate-related losses, and other vulnerable groups that depend on natural resources for their livelihoods,” said Mr. Hofman.

The Climate Change Adaptation Project has several components, including the following:

  • Supporting integration of climate change adaptation (CCA) into the agriculture and natural resources sectors, and strengthening the capabilities of relevant government agencies including the Climate Change Commission, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, and Department of Agriculture in addressing climate change;
  • Developing and demonstrating climate change adaptation strategies in the agriculture and natural resources sectors through measures including climate proofing irrigation infrastructure, enhancing delivery and effectiveness of extension services  for farm-level climate risk management, pilot-testing the feasibility of weather index-based crop insurance, and strengthening climate change resilience through improved management of protected areas; and
  • Improving the access of end users, especially in the agriculture and natural resources sectors, to more reliable scientific information that would enable more rapid and accurate decision making for climate risk management.

The US$4.974 million grant for the CCAP will come from the Global Environment Facility (GEF) Trust Fund being implemented by the World Bank. The project will also be supported with US40.45 million co-financing from the Participatory Irrigation Development Project (PIDP) and another US$10 million from the Environment and Natural Resources Management Project (ENRMP), two on-going government projects which are also financed by the World Bank.

The Philippines has one of the highest exposures to climate change risks—including typhoons, floods, landslides, and droughts—of any country in the world. 

In late September and early October 2009, tropical storm Ondoy, followed closely by typhoon Pepeng, caused massive flooding, landslides, damage to infrastructure, loss of crops, and loss of human life in an area reaching from metropolitan Manila to northern Luzon. These two weather disturbances—the worst on record—disrupted the lives of an estimated 7 million people, caused hundreds of deaths, damaged crops and infrastructure.

The country is also periodically affected by the El Niño phenomenon, which creates strains on water resources due to low water inflows into major watersheds and reservoirs. During severe El Niño-driven drought, water for agriculture has, at times, been totally cut in favor of domestic and industrial water supply, causing severe losses in agriculture and more hardships for the rural poor.

“This project is consistent with the government’s priorities with respect to poverty reduction and sustainable development, particularly given that the poorest segments of the Philippines’ population depend on agriculture and natural resources for their livelihoods,” said Mr. Hofman. “It will help to increase the resiliency of poor rural communities to climate change impacts, improve food security, and maintain the integrity of ecological systems.”