GCF 'NAP Clinic' at COP 23 tackles timely questions around NAP support

11 November 2017, COP 23, Bonn, Germany: A ‘National Adaptation Plan (NAP) Clinic’ was held on the margins of COP 23, organised by the Green Climate Fund (GCF) in partnership with the UNFCCC and the Global Environment Facility (GEF)- financed joint UNDP-UN Environment National Adaptation Plan Global Support Programme (NAP-GSP). The clinic sought to tackle some timely questions around NAP support, such as: What are the challenges that countries face in accessing the GCF funding for NAPs and other adaptation planning processes? What information can be provided to them to improve the quality of their proposals to the GCF? And, what are the good practices that could help catalyse adaptation action and investment? 
More than one hundred participants from 59 countries, together with 19 current or potential delivery partners, were represented at this six-hour event, which was held in English and French. 
Discussions centred around accessing the GCF readiness and preparatory support programme (readiness programme) for NAPs, and also covered related aspects of adaptation planning such as; sectoral approaches; engagement with the private sector; design of implementation strategies; and learning mechanisms, including between countries and support providers.
In his opening remarks, Mr. Youssef Nassef, Director of the Adaptation Programme of the UNFCCC Secretariat, took participants on a journey from COP 16 with the establishment of the NAPs under the Cancun Adaptation Framework, to COP 21 and beyond. He outlined the provisions of support for NAPs that emerged from the UNFCCC discussions. 
Mr Nassef said, ‘Today, with many countries having initiated their NAP process, we are at a critical junction for support of adaptation planning.’
Mr Pa Ousman Jarju, Director of the GCF Country Programming Division, also gave opening remarks. He said, ‘The GCF special window created under the GCF 'Readiness and Preparatory Support' provides a catalyst for NAPs and other adaptation planning initiatives. This one-time USD 3 million support per country can help to leverage investment for adaptation on the ground, particularly if countries submit good quality readiness proposals to the GCF.’
Mr Jason Spensley, GCF, said, ‘NAP readiness proposals can be enhanced by introducing the ten review criteria that the GCF Board has recently developed to assess proposals. The GCF Readiness and Preparatory Support is designed to catalyse actions and investment for adaptation on the ground. It is crucial to use this window strategically to create this catalytic effect.’
Ms Cecilia Silva, Adaptation Committee, presented the findings of an analysis of experiences of countries in accessing the readiness programme for NAPs. This was conducted by the Adaptation Committee in 2016 and 2017.  Ms. Silva said that a related workshop is planned for April 2018, bringing together NDAs, the GCF, and delivery partners,  back-to-back with the NAP Expo organized by the Least Developed Countries Expert Group (LEG). 
Ms Christina Chan from the World Resources Institute (WRI), discussed the design of adaptation planning, highlighted the theory of change (ToC) methodology. She said, ‘ToC is designed as a participatory modality, to model social change. It can be helpful in understanding how human, political, and economic system adapt. Therefore, if used in the design phase of adaptation planning, ToC could allow the recipient of funding to change course of action if they find that the adaptation intervention is not successful.’
Ms Astrid Zwick, GIZ, presented on ‘InsuResilience’, a programme established in 2015 by the G7 leaders, and managed by GIZ, to provide insurance coverage to the poorest and most vulnerable people. In this session on designing implementation strategies, the role of the private sector, including the insurance system, was also highlighted. Under this umbrella programme, several schemes have been launched, many of them requiring a consortium of public-private actors. Ms. Zwick also announced the launch at COP 23 of a new InsuResilience global partnership.

Experiences of countries in the NAP process

Four countries were invited to share their experiences in panel discussions; Bhutan, Tonga, Uruguay, and Cote d'Ivoire.  Rohini Kohli, NAP-GSP, UNDP, and Mozahralul Alam, NAP-GSP, UN Environment, moderated sessions on 'Designing adaptation planning processes' and 'Catalysing sectoral and local action'.  Anne Hammil, NAP Global Network, moderated a session on 'Designing strategies for financing implementation'.
Mr Chenchen Norbu, Bhutan, described the participatory approach Bhutan has taken to conduct the NAP process. Lessons learned  include; the understanding that the NAP process is a vehicle for countries to address their climate vulnerabilities and enhance their adaptive capacity; the ability to respond to changing needs; and the value of having long-trusted relationship with selected delivery partners (UNDP in Bhutan). Bhutan has submitted a readiness proposal to the GCF.
Ms Luisa Tuiafitu-Malolo, Tonga, highlighted that Tonga is the first country to have developed a Joint National Action Plan (JNAP) for Climate Change Adaptation and Disaster Risk Management (2006). Tonga has strategically used this plan to secure financing from various sources, including bilateral and multilateral sources. With implementation of the JNAP underway, Tonga is now finalizing JNAP 2, an updated version of JNAP 1, which will strengthen the consideration of gender and other social dimensions in the planning process.
Mr Ignacio Lorenzo, Uruguay, explained how Uruguay´s NAP acts as a framework for focused work on coastal adaptation, agriculture, cities and infrastructure. Uruguay´s readiness proposal submitted to the GCF reflects this multi-sectorial approach and aims to advance the integration of adaptation into cities, infrastructure and local planning. 
Mr Richemond Assie, Cote d´Ivoire, shared their experiences in supporting the private sector to access funding from the GCF, particularly for small and medium size enterprises (SMEs). Cote d´Ivoire engages with the private sector through several modalities, including by establishing a working group composed of both public and private actors, engaging in public private partnerships, providing climate information and facilitating access to relevant technologies. 
Several other countries shared their experiences, including Comoros, Democratic Republic of Congo, Georgia, Kenya, Mongolia, Timor Leste, Viet Nam, and others. Non-Anglophone countries emphasised the language barrier they face, and urged the GCF to consider providing documentation in other languages than English. They also called for additional guidance to develop a ToC, as well as support to demonstrate the co-financing or incremental cost of climate proofing development investment. 
The GCF Secretariat reassured participants that it has taken note of countries´ challenges and requirements, bringing everyone a step closer to the transformative, innovative and impactful climate action promoted by the GCF.