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Water

DM2009 Projects Aim to Help the Most Vulnerable

Tom Grubisich's picture

The world's poor are those most exposed to climate change that often brings drought, flooding, and other extreme weather.

DM2009 finalist projects aim to protect the most vulnerable from these disasters, while also helping them to develop economically.  Overall, such initiatives are called "linking adaptation to development."

In Mozambique, droughts keep about 500,000 people in chronic food insecurity, and indications are that dry periods aggravated by climate change will stretch out beyond the current "hunger period" of October to January.

Helvetas Mozambique, one of the finalists, describes what happens:

"Without access to quality seeds, subsistence farmers practicing rain-fed agriculture continue recycling grain that has been exhausted after generations of cultivation, producing poor yields. Subsequent storage losses cause 22 percent of rural households to run out of stocks and suffer from food shortages during the..'hunger period.'"

To break this cycle, Swiss-based Helvetas proposes what it calls a "zero-emission fridge" consisting of low-cost storage facilities run by community-owned seed banks that "distribute quality seeds of improved crop varieties and serve as a social safety net to benefit 10,000+ rural households -- focusing particularly on the most resource-poor and vulnerable groups" (photo at left).

International waters: Conflict, cooperation, and climate change

Aaron Wolf's picture

Almost all human and ecosystem activity relies on a safe, stable supply of water resources.  And since the resource needs to be allocated to myriad uses, from drinking to agriculture to instream flows to transportation, industry, and spiritual transformation, water management is conflict management.  Moreover, when surface basins or aquifer systems cross international boundaries the unifying principles of integrated watershed management and all the attendant centripetal forces within a basin directly contradict the centrifugal needs of state separation and sovereignty. 

     Photo © iStockphoto.com

There are 263 basins, and 265 aquifers, which cross the political boundaries of two or more countries.  International basins cover 45.3 percent of the earth’s land surface, affect about 40percent of the world’s population, and account for approximately 80 percent of global river flow. Ninety percent of the global population lives in countries with international basins. While the potential for paralyzing disputes is especially high in these basins, history shows that water can catalyze dialogue and cooperation, even between especially contentious riparians. Moreover, as we move from thinking about rights to thinking in terms of equitably sharing “baskets” of benefits, opportunities to cooperate become palpable.

For DM2009, All the World Is Its Multimedia Stage

Tom Grubisich's picture

DM2009 will be go multimedia in a big and global way during the Nov. 10-13 exhibition.  The event will be held -- physically -- in the Main Complex of the World Bank Group in Washington, but you can be completely connected from anywhere in the world.

Some things that will happen, and are already happening:

  • Finalists, sponsors, and visitors will be able to borrow Flip camcorders at the DM2009 kiosk to record what's going on and upload their videos at the kiosk to DM2009's YouTube channel.  (In photo at right, DM2009 communications leader Edie Wilson shows World Bank External Communications Web Managing Editor Angie Gentile how to do it.)
  • DM2009 will livestream video of the event -- here for Windows Media and here for Flash -- and upload interviews with finalists to the DM2009's channel on YouTube.
  • There are various DM2009 accounts at Twitter that can be followed, and the DM2009 blog will carry their Tweets during the event.
  • DM2009 participants and visitors can also share events photos at Flickr and Slideshare, links at Delicious, connections at LinkedIn, and all kinds of info/images at DM2009's Facebook site.
  • This blog will be an online event central where participants and visitors can published their reactions -- in text, images, and video. 

From 1,755 Entries, 100 Finalists From Every Region

Tom Grubisich's picture

The 100 finalist proposals for DM2009 were selected from 1,755 international applications through a rigorous two-stage assessment process guided by the principles of fairness, transparency, and consensus. Nearly 200 experts from the World Bank Group and a range of other organizations volunteered their time to serve as assessors, each reviewing 20 to 35 proposals.

Each proposal was evaluated by a minimum of three assessors from a diverse range of backgrounds. Assessors individually read an assigned batch of proposals and then, grouped in teams of three to five, narrowed down the number of proposals through discussion and  consensus. At least one person in each assessment team participated from outside the World Bank Group to ensure a varied perspective.

Proposals were evaluated against the criteria of innovation, results, project design and organizational capacity, sustainability, and growth potential. Special emphasis was placed on innovation, as DM's foremost interest is to find new, creative and innovative approaches to weather-threatened settlements and agriculture, especially in developing countries.

The top 10 finalist countries were: Peru, Philippines, Bangladesh, Bolivia, Kenya, Ecuador, India, Nepal, Cambodia, and Colombia.

Climate Change Debate Heads Toward Resolution

Edith Wilson's picture

Pre-Copenhagen meeting in Barcelona earlier this yearThe ninth annual Development Marketplace Global Competition takes place in the midst of international debate and negotiation about how to mitigate the causes and adapt to the impacts of climate change.   The event is an integral part of the efforts on climate change within the World Bank Group and complements the Pilot Program on Climate Resilience, part of the Climate Investment Funds operated by the multilateral development banks.

A comprehensive, enforceable agreement on controlling global warming that doesn’t penalize developing nations is the goal of world leaders at the United Nations Climate Change Conference to be held in Copenhagen on Dec. 7-18, 2009. Leading up to Copenhagen was the two-year Bali Action Plan agreed to in December 2007.

Adaptation and Mitigation – The Difference

Tom Grubisich's picture

There are two ways to respond to climate change – adaptation and mitigation.  The responses are not an either/or.  Both are necessary.  Adaptation, as early as the short term, can cushion people and places against the impacts of extreme weather, including drought, heat waves, flooding, and rising sea levels.  Mitigation, over time, can slow down manmade global warming, which has been identified by many scientific studies as a major cause of extreme weather.

Adaptation to Climate Tied to Development

Rasmus Heltberg's picture

How should adaptation to climate change be designed and funded? In the run-Storm pattern from satelliteup to the December 2009 Copenhagen climate negotiations there’s an international push to create new funding mechanisms for climate adaptation in developing countries. Given the complexity of climate change and limited experience in funding adaptation, we in the World Bank’s Social Development department decided to launch a study of the lessons from the DM2009 proposals. The proposals constitute a large and interesting database of proposed adaptation interventions. By studying the proposals as a group, we hope to gain insight into the global supply of adaptation innovations and project ideas, especially at the community level.

Our study considers how adaptation is conceptualized by suppliers of global adaptation interventions, what innovations for climate adaptation are proposed, and what kind of partnerships are put forward. We hope to contribute to policy discussions on how donors in the future can provide funding for community-based adaptation to climate change.

One of the discussions circulating among practitioners is how to orient funding for adaptation: Should development funds be considered separate from adaptation or are the two intertwined?    

Warm Welcome From Bank and DM2009 Sponsors

Edith Wilson's picture

The banner that's been unfurled across the facade of the World Bank's Main Complex in Washington, D.C., where DM2009 will be held Nov. 10-13, tells the story.  Are you registered?

From Kathy Sierra, Vice President of the World Bank’s Sustainable Development Network, and Sanjay Pradhan, Vice President of the World Bank Institute, comes this welcome to DM2009 finalists:

Development Marketplace 2009 couldn't have a more timely or significanSanjay Pradhant theme: “100 Ideas to Save the Planet and its people from the effects of a changing climate.” 

 

Managing risks from climate change will require not only one hundred but thousands of ideas from communities all over the world. Identifying the best of those ideas and reducing the time it takes to incubate, develop, and take them to scale will mean the difference between life and death to those people who live in the most vulnerable areas.

Update from Waso Village, Kenya

Sam Stanyaki's picture
    Photo © Julia Bucknall/World Bank

It is very hard to explain through writing what befell us. The drought is more that what is seen on telly. I am now only left with one cattle. The rest were wiped by the drought. That makes me feel as if there is no future in me. I had a dream of seeing the number I had increase to more than I could think of. Now that dream is gone.

We had rain for only two days, the 15th and 16th of October. This is not enough to make the land green, so we are still hoping for more. I am touched by offers of help. I wish you could make some grass for me. Since there haven't been any rain in most places in the country, we found it difficult to move the cattle in search of grass. Many died on the way.


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