“I welcome the successful signing of the Memorandum of Understanding and the Letter of Understanding today between Burkina Faso and UNCDF, marking the start of the project,” said the Burkinabè Minister of the Environment, the Economy green and climate change Siméon Sawadogo.
It was this Friday, November 5, 2021 as climate negotiations progress in Glasgow that Mr. Sawadogo signed with UNCDF Executive Secretary Preeti Sinha the LoCAL Memorandum of Understanding and Letter of Understanding. Thus, this agreement that binds the two parties allows Burkina Faso to build resilience and adapt to climate change.
The country thus joins several other African states including Benin, the first African country to implement LoCAL. According to the Burkinabè government, it is in view of the major results achieved and the commitment of Burkina Faso at the highest level that the country has been prioritized among the other countries in the scoping phase to launch its pilot phase before the end of 2021. .
Three beneficiary municipalities
“At a total cost of nearly $ 176,000, this pilot phase of the device will be implemented in three municipalities from October 2021 to December 2022,” said Mr. Sawadogo. He indicated that an annual work and budget plan (AWPB) as well as a draft order establishing the steering committee have been produced in order to quickly activate the LoCAL mechanism.
UNCDF designed LoCAL a decade ago, first piloting the mechanism to transfer climate finance to local governments for locally led adaptation in Asia. “Today, LoCAL has become a global trust mechanism and – counting today’s signing – some 27 countries in Africa, Asia, the Pacific and the Caribbean are implementing or designing their initiatives. adaptation using the LoCAL approach, ”says UNCDF on its website.
A Sahelian country with no maritime outlet and located in the heart of West Africa, Burkina Faso is hard hit by climate change with rising temperatures, unpredictable drops and rainfall patterns as well as extreme weather events. The country is facing the advancing desertification, floods and food insecurity. According to the Burkinabè government, “an estimated 247,145 hectares of forest are lost each year”.
“Local governments can be a powerful ally”
World leaders opened COP 26 on November 1 in Glasgow and negotiations are ongoing. One of the main issues on the agenda is climate finance and how to scale up delivery to the communities and countries most in need of support. In the fight for adaptation to climate change, LoCAL intends to help the Burkinabè authorities access the climate finance, capacity building and technical support they need.
“Local governments can be a powerful ally in promoting climate change adaptation and building resilient communities because they understand local needs, are the first responders to climate change, and have a mandate to undertake the investments in climate change. ‘small and medium-sized adaptation and infrastructure that can be transformative in building community resilience,’ says UNCDF on its website.
11 million people have benefited from LoCAL actions
The LoCAL mechanism combines Innovative Grants for Climate Resilience (PBCRG), which provide programming and verification of climate change related expenditures at the local level, with technical support and capacity building support. “It is designed to strengthen existing national and subnational financial and fiscal systems, and it uses the demonstration effect to trigger new flows for local adaptation action,” the institution said, adding that “thanks to LoCAL, funds worth over US $ 110 million have been committed to adaptation actions to date ”.
LoCAL has engaged with over 300 local governments in 14 countries in Africa, Asia and the Pacific. According to its own figures, more than 11 million people have benefited from LoCAL actions. The mechanism aims to reach 500 million people once these activities are scaled up nationwide. UNCDF is committed to developing LoCAL with the goal of doubling the size of the facility every five years until 2030. As of early 2021, 13 additional countries have expressed interest in joining LoCAL and are currently supported. in the preliminary design phase, taking the total number of LoCAL countries to 27.