Sweden gives new fund for climate change projects

 Swedish Ambassador H.E. Mrs. Anne Höglund, left, and UNDP Country Director Setsuko Yamazaki, right, exchange signed document to grant fund to help local Cambodian people adapt to climate change. (Photo: UNDP Cambodia)

Phnom Penh –Sweden has provided new grant to support United Nations Development Programme in carrying out projects aimed at improving livelihoods of Cambodian people in rural communities most vulnerable to impacts of climate change.

Swedish Ambassador H.E. Mrs. Anne Höglund and UNDP Country Director Setsuko Yamazaki signed the grant agreement of SEK 10.57 million Swedish Kronor (US$1.6 million) on Friday, 10 May 2013. The amount is in addition to SEK 17.30 million (US$2.6 million) that the Swedish Government has given earlier to UNDP to implement Cambodia Community-Based Adaptation Project (CCBAP).

"We are happy to be able to continue the cooperation with UNDP and support a program that has so far produced very good results. It provides civil society organizations and local authorities with a better understanding of climate change issues, challenges and opportunities, and help communities to prepare for and adapt to climate changes," Ambassador Höglund said.

CCBAP is designed to help reduce vulnerability of Cambodia’s agricultural sector to changes in the availability of water resources due to climate change. It works with targeted rural communities through livelihood activities to enhance adaptive capacity and resilience of the villagers to survive adverse effects of climatic events such as drought and flood.

Since 2010, CCBAP has funded 46 projects to local NGOs and community-based organizations to implement initiatives in 380 villages in 21 provinces across Cambodia. They include, among others, restoration of water canal for rice cultivation, building household ponds, training villagers on climate resilient rice seeds and using system of rice intensification, and integrated farming to improve ability to earn more income. Those initiatives are benefiting some 12,076 families among which women make up 50 percent.

Referring to natural disasters that affected many countries in recent years, Ms. Yamazaki, UNDP Country Director, said they only re-affirm further the need to prepare vulnerable communities in Cambodia to be strong and capable in adapting and responding to the challenges.

"The programme like Cambodia Community-Based Adaptation Programme provides such support to the communities to build their resilience to climate change impacts. On behalf of the Cambodian people, we are grateful to the Swedish Government and its people for the continued support and generous contributions to Cambodia,” Ms. Yamazaki said.