Guidelines for preparation of the national adaptation programmes of action

Go back to results

Decision 28/CP.7

Guidelines for preparation of the national adaptation programmes of action


Gender reference

This decision states that the preparation of NAPAs must be guided by gender equality.

Elaborated language

The Conference of the Parties,

Recognizing the specific needs and special situations of the least developed countries referred to in Article 4, paragraph 9, of the Convention,

Recognizing further that many of the least developed country Parties do not have the capacity to prepare and submit national communications in the foreseeable future, or to convey their urgent and immediate needs in respect of their vulnerability and adaptation to the adverse effects of climate change,

Recognizing also that information contained in national adaptation programmes of action may constitute the first step in the preparation of initial national communications, and would help to build capacity for addressing urgent and immediate adaptation needs, as well as for the preparation of national communications;

1. Decides to adopt the guidelines for the preparation of national adaptation programmes of action included in the annex to the present decision;

2. Invites Parties to make submissions with a view to improving the guidelines, by 15 July 2002, for consideration by the Subsidiary Body for Implementation at its seventeenth session;

3. Decides to review, and if necessary revise, the guidelines at its eighth session, taking into account the views submitted by Parties and the least developed countries expert group established under decision 29/CP.7;

4. Invites least developed country Parties to use the above-mentioned guidelines, in accordance with their national circumstances, in preparing their national adaptation programmes of action.



Guidelines for the preparation of national adaptation programmes of action

A. Introduction

1. National adaptation programmes of action (NAPAs) will communicate priority activities addressing the urgent and immediate needs and concerns of the least developed countries (LDCs), relating to adaptation to the adverse effects of climate change.

2. The rationale for developing NAPAs rests on the low adaptive capacity of LDCs, which renders them in need of immediate and urgent support to start adapting to current and projected adverse effects of climate change. Activities proposed through NAPAs would be those whose further delay could increase vulnerability, or lead to increased costs at a later stage.

3. The NAPA will be presented in the form of a document specifying a list of priority activities, with a concise justification based on a tight set of criteria.

4. The NAPA document will not be an end in itself, but rather a means for the dissemination, by an LDC Party, of its proposed programme of action to address its urgent needs for adaptation. The priority activities identified through the NAPA process will be made available to the entity that will operate the LDC fund referred to in decision 7/CP.7, paragraph 6, and other sources of funding, for the provision of financial resources to implement these activities.

B. Objective of NAPAs

5. National adaptation programmes of action will serve as simplified and direct channels of communication for information relating to the urgent and immediate adaptation needs of the LDCs.

C. Characteristics of NAPAs

6. National adaptation programmes of action should:

(a) Be easy to understand;

(b) Be action-oriented and country-driven;

(c) Set clear priorities for urgent and immediate adaptation activities as identified by the countries.

D. Guiding elements

7. The preparation of NAPAs will be guided by the following:

(a) A participatory process involving stakeholders, particularly local communities;

(b) A multidisciplinary approach;

(c) A complementary approach, building upon existing plans and programmes, including national action plans under the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification, national biodiversity strategies and action plans under the Convention on Biological Diversity, and national sectoral policies;

(d) Sustainable development;

(e) Gender equality;

(f) A country-driven approach;

(g) Sound environmental management;

(h) Cost-effectiveness;

(i) Simplicity;

(j) Flexibility of procedures based on individual country circumstances.

E. Process

8. The preparation of the NAPA may proceed as follows:

(a) The setting up of a national NAPA team: the national climate change focal point will set up a NAPA team composed of a lead agency and representatives of stakeholders including government agencies and civil society. This group would be constituted using an open and flexible process that will be inclusive and transparent. The NAPA team will be responsible for preparing the NAPA and coordinating the implementation of NAPA activities;

(b) The NAPA team will assemble a multidisciplinary team:

  • (i) To synthesize available information on adverse effects of climate change and coping strategies, which would be collated and reviewed, including the national strategies for sustainable development, the Programme of Action for the Least Developed Countries, the United Nations development assistance frameworks, and poverty reduction strategy papers, if available in the countries;
  • (ii) To conduct a participatory assessment of vulnerablity to current climate variability and extreme weather events, and to assess where climate change is causing increases in associated risks;
  • (iii) To identify key climate-change adaptation measures, based, to the extent possible, on vulnerability and adaptation assessment; such measures would also be responsive to needs identified under other relevant processes, such as the preparation of national action plans under the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification and national biodiversity strategies and action plans under the Convention on Biological Diversity;
  • (iv) To identify and prioritize country-driven criteria for selecting priority activities to address needs arising from the adverse effects of climate change, drawing on the criteria referred to in section F.4 below.

(c) Development of proposals for priority activities to address needs arising from the adverse effects of climate change: the national team will:

  • (i) Organize a national and/or subnational consultative process to solicit inputs and proposal ideas in order to help develop a short list of potential NAPA activities. The national team would facilitate this consultative process, and would help in translating ideas into activities. This process will allow adequate dialogue between the national team and the public, with time allowed for public comment and revisions;
  • (ii) Identify potential activities, which may include capacity building and policy reform, and which may be integrated into sectoral and other policies;
  • (iii) Select and identify priority activities, based on the agreed criteria;
  • (iv) Propose profiles of priority activities using the following format: • Title • Rationale/justification in relation to climate change, including sectors concerned • Description - Objectives and activities - Inputs - Short-term outputs - Potential long-term outcomes • Implementation - Institutional arrangement - Risks and barriers - Evaluation and monitoring - Financial resources

(d) The development of the NAPA document: the document will be prepared following the structure set out in section F below;

(e) Public review and revision: the NAPA document will undergo public review and be revised accordingly;

(f) The final review process: the NAPA document, including the profiles, will be reviewed by a team of government and civil society representatives, including the private sector, who may take into consideration any advice solicited from the Least Developed Countries Expert Group;

(g) National government endorsement of the NAPA: after the NAPA has been prepared, it will be submitted to the national government for endorsement. (h) Public dissemination: the endorsed NAPA document will be made available to the public and to the UNFCCC secretariat.

F. Structure of NAPA document

1. Introduction and setting

9. This introductory section will include background information about the country that is relevant to the NAPA process. It will cover current characteristics, key environmental stresses, and how climate change and climate variability adversely affect biophysical processes and key sectors.

2. Framework for adaptation programme

10. This section will also provide an overview of climate variability and observed and projected climate change and associated actual and potential adverse effects of climate change. This overview will be based on existing and ongoing studies and research, and/or empirical and historical information as well as traditional knowledge.

11. This section will describe the NAPA framework and its relationship to the country’s development goals, as described in subparagraph 8(b)(i) above, to make the framework consistent with socio-economic and development needs. In addition, it would also describe the goals, objectives and strategies of the NAPA, taking into account other plans and multilateral environmental agreements.

12. Where possible, a description of the potential barriers to implementation should also be included.

3. Identification of key adaptation needs

13. Based on this overview and framework, past and current practices for adaptation to climate change and climate variability will be identified as related to existing information regarding the country’s vulnerability to the adverse effects of climate change, climate variability and extreme weather events, as well as long-term climate change. This section will explain how and to what extent activities may address specific vulnerabilities.

14. Given the actual and potential adverse effects of climate change described in section F.2 above, this section will identify relevant adaptation options including capacity building, policy reform, integration into sectoral policies and project-level activities.

4. Criteria for selecting priority activities

15. A set of locally-driven criteria will be used to select priority adaptation activities. These criteria should include, inter alia: (a) Level or degree of adverse effects of climate change; (b) Poverty reduction to enhance adaptive capacity;

(c) Synergy with other multilateral environmental agreements;

(d) Cost-effectiveness.

16. These criteria for prioritization will be applied to, inter alia:

(a) Loss of life and livelihood;

(b) Human health;

(c) Food security and agriculture;

(d) Water availability, quality and accessibility;

(e) Essential infrastructure;

(f) Cultural heritage;

(g) Biological diversity;

(h) Land-use management and forestry;

(i) Other environmental amenities;

(j) Coastal zones, and associated loss of land.

5. List of priority activities

17. This section will list priority climate-change adaptation activities that have been selected based on the criteria listed in section F.4 above.

18. For each of the selected priority activities a set of profiles will be developed for inclusion in the NAPA document. This could follow the format set out in subparagraph 8(c)(iv) above.

6. NAPA preparation process

19. This section will describe the NAPA development process, including the process of consultation, the methods for evaluation and monitoring, the institutional arrangements, and the mechanism of endorsement by the national government.

Gender Climate Tracker App for iOS & Android

Download the GCT App for your mobile device for the offline access to our data.

App Store   Google Play

Become a Gender Climate Tracker!

Share your relevant documents on the country profiles and help us improve the platform.

Join GCT