By: Tahani al-Sabri
On Wednesday, November 19th, Yemen launched its Pilot Program for Climate Resilience, also known as the “Climate Information System and PPCR Coordination Project.”
The conference commemorating the launch which was attended by Mr. Abdo Razaz Saleh, Minster of Water and Environment, and Suiko Yoshijima, representative of the World Bank.
Saleh spoke at length on the powerful impacts of Yemen’s climate on its people and grounds. “Yemen is considered as one of the world’s countries most affected by climate change, and thus the absence of records on rainfall and temperature change can cause significant difficulties in measuring long-term climate change. These deficiencies similarly complicate evaluation of renewable water and other natural resources, the preparation of climate projections, and the development of appropriate policies and programs. In addition to institutional weakness in many relevant government sectors, we are also weak against population pressures in the country, which can easily become more difficult given the current economic conditions. If Yemen’s services in climate, agriculture, and water could be improved, this would be an important step in achieving social and economic development in Yemen.”
He further explained that this project is going to help create knowledge about adjustment and adaptation to climate change in a number of different sectors as well as provide a framework for the integration of this knowledge at both regional and national levels.
The program aims to improve monitoring and prediction of rainfall, temperature and climate variations, which will help in evaluating the frequency of droughts with greater accuracy. It will also allow for more timely weather forecasts and a better understanding of the impact of climate change in general.
Mr. Sadaq al-Nabhani, a member of the Yemen pilot program for climate resilience (PPCR), said that Yemen submitted its proposal to participate in this project two years ago. They have obtained $160 million to carry it out.
The program has been divided into 3 phases, and the programis currently completing the first of these. “Phase I of the PPCR is the preparatory phase for the overall program, which will lay the foundation for climate resilience to be mainstreamed into development planning and inform the identification of specific interventions and investments that will be supported during Phase II.”
Mr. Fadi al-Buraihi, head of the procurement Office of Phase 1, said the program has achieved most of its written goals, which are divided into four pillars. These pillars are Climate Change Information Systems & Public Awareness, Mainstreaming Climate Change Resilience into National Development Planning, Formulation of Yemen’s SPCR and Identification of Phase II Interventions, and Program Coordination of the PPCR Mainstreaming.
A World Bank report on the project said that the project development objective is to improve the quality of hydro-meteorological and climate services provided to end-users. This objective will be achieved through improved forecasts resulting from improved observing networks, the introduction of new technologies, and access to higher resolution global weather and climate products.
A secondary objective of the PPCR is to provide incentives for scaled-up action and transformational change through pilot projects that demonstrate how to integrate climate risk and resilience into core development planning, while complementing other ongoing development activities in a given country.