Malawi gets $12.3m to scale up early warning system

The Green Climate Fund Board (GCF) has approved US$12.3 million for Malawi to scale up the use of modernised climate information and an early warning system which is expected to benefit at least 3 million people in the country.

Floods devastated Malawi this year

Floods devastated Malawi this year

Fred Kossam

Fred Kossam

Other expected impacts of the project include saving lives and reduced damages, and protection of agriculture-based livelihoods as the intensity and frequency of floods, droughts, stormy rains and strong winds increases negatively affecting the agricultural sector which supports Malawi economy.

Malawi’s proposal was supported by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

At a meeting in Livingstone, Zambia GCF approved USD 168 million of GCF funding for projects and programmes worth USD 624 million, marking the end of its launch phase and kick-starting the flow of climate finance through the Fund to developing countries. The activities supported by the Board will generate up to USD 1.3 billion in investments over the coming five years.

Malawi is one of only three countries in Africa to access the fund and there are three in Asia-Pacific, and two in Latin America. The initial batch of projects covers mitigation and adaptation measures.

Reacting to the approval of the funding, one of Malawi’s National Climate Change Negotiating Team member Fred Kossam said the project is timely as Malawi is recovers from recent floods that killed over 100 and affected thousands of people.

“The Government will be able to address the whole spectrum of EWS [Early Warning Systems] from Hydro met observation, understanding our risks Hydrological forecasting and preparedness as well dissemination of the messages. We will target community based early warning systems so that the messages are fully understood by the communities so that they act on them and do things differently.

“Another new element in the project is use of climate information targeting farmers through use of enhanced extension services so that these farmers are able to maximize yields,” said Kossam.

The project will be implemented Government departments namely Department of Disaster Management Affairs, Department of Metrological Service, Department of Water Resources, Department of Fisheries and the Department of Agricultural Extension Services. The National Small holder Farmers Association (NASFM), a Non-Governmental Organisation, is also part of the implementing partners.

Co-chair of the GCF board Gabriel Quijandria Acosta stated that approving these first projects is an important milestone, particularly for GCF’s partnering entities and beneficiaries.

“This first review of projects has been an enriching experience for the Board. It has allowed us to reflect on the areas that need to be further enhanced to speed up support to countries that are already experiencing the devastating impacts of climate change,” said Acosta.

“The approved projects showcase the transformative impacts that GCF has been designed to deliver,” added Board Co-Chair HenrikHarboe.

“We have some innovative projects which have all satisfied our rigorous review process, including the assessment by the independent Technical Advisory Panel,” Harboe said.

“The Fund is now truly up and running, and I am confident the Board will go on to scale and fund much bigger projects in the near future, living up to our ambition with the Fund.”

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