Regional stakeholder meeting “Towards a Strategic Agenda on Climate Change and Adaptation in the South Caucasus Mountains”

Aug 2016

In 2014, UNEP received a pledge from the Government of Austria to support the project “Climate Change Action in Developing Countries with Fragile Mountainous Ecosystems from a Sub-regional perspective” with a particular focus on the South Caucasus, East Africa, Tropical Andes, Western Balkans and Central Asia. The core objective of this project is to promote regional understanding and foster joint dialogue on mountain ecosystems in the context of climate change and adaptation as well as foster further inter-regional exchange of experience and best-practice at the global level.

Based on the most recent academic literature and consultations with national experts on climate change and sustainable mountain development from Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia a highly visual “Outlook on Climate Change Adaptation in the South Caucasus Mountains” was published in the first phase of this project. The Outlook (see here) provided a holistic picture of the current trends and challenges in terms of climate change adaptation in mountain regions. It also identified concrete gaps and needs as well as provided a set of recommendations addressing those. The Outlook was developed in a partnership with UNEP's collaborating centre GRID-Arendal and the "The Caucasus Network for Sustainable Development of Mountain Regions (Sustainable Caucasus)".

Responding to the needs identified in the Outlook, UNEP is currently supporting the South Caucasus countries in a number of concrete follow-up activities promoting mountain adaptation, using financial instruments and technical assistance programmes such as provided through the Climate Technology Centre & Network (CTCN). 

As stated in the Outlook, South Caucasus countries would also benefit from a regional approach to climate change adaptation in the South Caucasus mountains including exchange of data and information, monitoring, and coordination of relevant actions as well as ecosystem-based approaches to climate change adaptation.

In this context, UNEP together with Sustainable Caucasus and NALAG held a regional experts workshop "Towards a strategic agenda on climate change and adaptation in the South Caucasus Mountains" in Tbilisi on 4-5 August, 2016. The main objective of this meeting was to review draft elements that have been prepared for such an agenda and seek further inputs from key stakeholders. 

Regional stakeholders, representatives of the governmental bodies and local environmental NGOs discussed the DRAFT Strategic Guidance on Climate Change Adaptation in the South Caucasus Mountains, provided their comments and insights to it. The document will be further finalized by the stakeholders and prepped for further discussion and final approval.