The ADAPT Asia-Pacific 1st Annual Forum was held on March 13-15, 2012 in Bangkok, Thailand.
Approximately 120 participants representing government institutions from more than 20 Asian and Pacific Island countries, representatives of key climate change funds (Adaptation Fund, the Least Developed Country Fund, the Special Climate Change Fund, the Climate Investment Funds, and the Global Climate Change Alliance), multilateral institutions (UNEP, UNDP, ADB, WB) and bilateral donor (JICA and AusAID) met at the ADAPT Asia-Pacific Forum to discuss how governments can compete more effectively for international climate change adaptation funds.
The Forum was organized as a side event to the APAN Forum (March 12-13, 2012) to ensure that invited government officials could also attend the APAN Forum. The APAN Forum provided an additional opportunity for the participants to learn more about the latest climate change adaptation work in Asia and the Pacific and build a network with the larger adaptation community.
The Forum successfully accomplished its three main objectives of (1) raising awareness and understanding of potential adaptation project proponents in Asia and the Pacific of available climate funding resources and the requirements for accessing these funds; (2) identifying priority capacity gaps and country needs in preparing climate change adaptation project proposals; and (3) introducing the ADAPT Asia-Pacific project and its potential role in facilitating country access to the adaptation funds.
The Forum started with the opening reception on the evening of March 13 and continued for one and a half days with keynote speeches and four panel sessions on (1) the current status and future plans of climate change adaptation related funds; (2) the role of multilateral organizations in climate change adaptation project preparation and access to adaptation funds; (2) the experience of developing countries in preparing climate change adaptation projects and accessing funds; and (4) capacity building opportunities, needs and challenges in the region. The Forum featured three keynote speakers: Dr. Katharine Batten, USAID Global Climate Change Coordinator; Dr. Bindu N. Lohani, Vice President for the Asian Development Bank; and Elisea Gillera Gozun, Presidential Advisor on climate change in the Republic of the Philippines. These keynote speeches provided participants with the overall context of adaptation and its challenges from the global, regional, national perspective as well as the prospect of future funding for adaptation projects.
ADAPT Asia-Pacific is working on the concept of establishing a virtual network (Community of Practice) with the participation of the Forum participants and other interested climate change adaptation champions in the region. The main objectives of this online platform are to share best practices and lessons learned and keep the Forum participants informed of the latest developments in climate change adaptation project preparation and access to adaptation funds, including new funding and training opportunities. This network will also provide an opportunity to its members to share experience, ask questions to their colleagues and counterparts and get an expert opinion on key adaptation project preparation and finance issues. We will post more information about the newly established Community of Practice on the ADAPT Asia-Pacific website in the near future.