Nepal Climate Change Support Programme (NCCSP): building climate resilience

Nepal Climate Change Support Programme (NCCSP): building climate resilience

At a glance

Active programmes
Min. of Science, Technology and Environment, UK's Department for International Development (DFID), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
Countries involved
Total budget
16,50 M€
GCCA priority area(s)
Effects of climate change on the region

Observations of recent climatic trends include increases in temperature, an upward shift of agro-ecological zones, increasingly variable precipitation patterns, and changes in snowfall patterns (less snow and changes in timing). Communities also perceive a shift in wind, frost and dew patterns, as well as increases in extreme weather events (droughts and floods) and avalanches. The Himalayan glaciers, an important renewable water source, are retreating as temperatures increase. All of this entails risks for a poor country with an economy very dependent on natural resources, notably in terms of agricultural productivity and food security, availability of water, nutrition, health and sanitation. Glacial lake outburst floods are also a threat to population and infrastructure.

The Government of Nepal has initiated processes whereby climatic threats to development are being addressed. Priority climate adaptation measures have been identified across a range of sectors through a highly consultative process, which is an exemplar for other developing countries. In preparation for the role of coordination of climate change response measures, the Ministry of Environment has developed an implementation framework that will be used to coordinate national through to local adaptation initiatives.

GCCA's action programme
Geographical scope
Country groups
Initial GCCA/GCCA+ contribution
16,500,000.00 €
Specific objectives

Build the capacity of the Government of Nepal to develop, cost, budget and implement evidence-based policy and measures aimed at mainstreaming climate change in key development sectors (agriculture, forestry, water and energy), including through public-private partnerships.

Key achievements
  • Technical assistance and capacity building needs in relation to climate change have been assessed and budgeted, and clear action plans have been outlined. An institutional framework and coordination mechanism for adaptation delivery has been developed in consultation with the Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Federal Affairs and Local Development.

  • Media training on reporting about climate change was delivered. A report and training materials are available here.

  • An awareness raising programme on climate change and what can be done to increase resilience is estimated to have reached 50 000 people in targeted districts.

  • 100 Local Adaptation Plans of Action (LAPAs) have been prepared across 14 districts. They have prioritised the first round of immediate actions to undertake in five main areas of intervention: (i) agriculture (e.g. irrigation, training on agricultural and aquaculture techniques), food security, livelihoods, forestry and biodiversity; (ii) capacity and skill development, income generation, planning and monitoring; (iii) mitigation of climate-induced hazards and disasters (e.g. early warning systems, flood and landslide protection); (iv) water resource management, alternative energy (e.g. renewable energy, energy efficiency); (v) infrastructure development.

  • Monitoring and evaluation systems have been developed for LAPAs, and the baseline survey and capacity assessment have been completed for the 14 districts concerned (100 villages). This is essential for measuring the programme’s impact in terms of vulnerability reduction.

  • All 14 District Development Committees (DDCs) have started to implement adaptation activities. By February 2015, more than 715 adaptation actions have been completed, and about 919 adaptation actions were under implementation. Service providers have been selected in 7 districts (Jajarkot, Achham, Bardiya, Dailekh, Jumla, Rolpa and Rukum) for implementation of LAPA.

  • LAPA actions have been incorporated and budgeted in the annual planning of the government for the current fiscal year, and channelling of the LAPA budget through government treasury, following government’s fund flow mechanisms, which can be considered a transformational change. LAPA red book plan has been prepared, which was approved by National Planning Commission (NPC) and about 570 Million Nepalese Rupees has been allocated for July 16, 2014 – July 15, 2015 for implementation of 100 LAPAs in all 14 districts. 

  • A large number of training sessions have also been organised, including 102 training sessions to local committees on LAPA with a total of 2,342 participants. 108 orientation sessions have been organized involving 2,096 Ward Citizen Forum (WCF) members to create awareness and advocacy on climate change adaptation and gender equality and social inclusion.

  • With a view to create awareness on the need to build resilience at the community level to adapt to climate change impacts, and enhance  programme visibility, 22 events (based around radio programmes, street theatre, National Science Day celebrations, supported by posters, pamphlets,  calendars and jingles, etc.) were organized in 2014. 

  • A political agreement on a low-carbon development strategy has been achieved. To inform the strategy, primary data collection and secondary data analysis are under way.

  • With project support, the government has developed a number of Clean Development Mechanism projects.

  • Overall, it is estimated that at least 250 000 people have received direct or indirect benefits from the programme.

Main activities per result

The capacity of relevant institutions at national and local levels to support the design, implementation and monitoring of climate change mainstreaming interventions is strengthened.

This notably involves developing effective climate change-relevant baselines to support decision making, especially for the Karnali and Rapti river basins. The capacity of local institutions to establish and monitor the impacts of climate change, and to assess the effectiveness of intervention measures, will be mapped and then strengthened, with a specific focus on the technical and institutional capacities of Village and District Development Committees in these two river basins.

Other planned activities include preparing and implementing policies, plans and strategies; enhancing the negotiation skills of the government and non-government actors; and developing the skills required to access, manage and disburse climate change financing in support of adaptation, mitigation and the promotion of low-carbon development.

Dialogue on climate change will be organised at sectoral, department and district levels, and awareness campaigns will target various stakeholders at these levels.

Local and sub-regional level mechanisms are put in place to test and promote scalable initiatives for climate adaptation and resilience.

Financial support will be provided to civil society and local and national governments to pilot innovative mechanisms of adaptation, and to test the convergence of mitigation and adaptation options. To this effect, a call for proposals will be organised. The integration of climate change-related measures into local level adaptation plans will be piloted in villages across all districts within the Karnali and Rapti river basins. A mechanism for sharing and learning from adaptation interventions among different stakeholders at the district and national levels will be established.

The programme will have important cross-cutting impacts and aspects, such as a strong commitment to women’s empowerment; inclusion of the poor and disadvantaged groups; enhancement of good governance; mainstreaming climate change in local, regional and national level planning; as well as the use of ecosystem and livelihood perspectives incorporating an understanding of watershed dynamics. The programme covers 14 districts of mid- and far-Western Nepal, and will benefit a population of approximately 3 million people.

Challenges and lessons learned (selected)
  • Climate adaptation programmes are new in Nepal, so that systems and approaches are still being developed and tested. The Nepal Climate Change Support Programme is at the forefront to this work. In such a context, specific attention must be paid to setting up a strong monitoring and evaluation system.

  • One of the aspects the programme needs to explicitly monitor is the impact of migration on communities receiving adaptation support, and whether migration support is a cost-effective adaptation option.

  • Climate awareness for communities has to be scaled up to ensure improved understanding of climate impacts in livelihoods and development. Specific measures have to be included to ensure that women and vulnerable groups benefit.

  • For the first time, the action has been able to prepare local adaptation plans, following a framework that enables government to localize adaptation activities and provide services for vulnerable communities.

  • The LAPA framework needs revision to support integration with disaster management plans as well as district and village development plans, as some adaptation measures are beyond the scope of community projects. Generally speaking, the LAPA process could successfully be integrated into local government planning.

  • Flexibility and capacity building are key for the services to be effectively delivered. Indeed, LAPA activities have been thematically diverse and adapted to specific locations. Specialised, yet flexible delivery agents are necessary to provide quality technical services to local communities., notably when project locations are remote, human resources capacities are low and social services are difficult to access.

  • Each LAPA focuses on supporting a community as a whole Nonetheless, it would be useful to examine options for individual or household support, such as crop insurance or disaster recovery grants, which can target the most vulnerable.

  • Local committees have assumed ownership of the programme, helping in the integration of climate change into local planning processes and implementation of LAPAs. Local institutions have been instrumental in the planning, coordination, facilitation and monitoring of the programme. Indeed, Climate Change Coordination Committees and Village Energy Environment Coordination Committees have emerged as key institutional mechanisms representing various stakeholders to undertake these functions.

Way forward (selected)
  • Good practices in programme implementation will be identified and suggestions for  improvement for effective LAPA implementation will be formulated.

  • A special focus should be given to the establishment of local funds for climate change adaptation.

  • Further efforts should be made to support the transfer of appropriate technologies to the communities,  to change the adaptation capacities of the vulnerable households. This could be done  in partnership with national and International agencies and entities from the private sector.

  • More systematic communication on climate change issues is needed at local level, facilitating the implementation of Climate Change policies including NAPAs and LAPAs.