Supporting Lebanon to advance their NAP process

Project Overview

Sep 2015
Lebanon submits their Intend Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC) to the UNFCCC, under the Paris Agreement. To date (Jul 2019), no NDC has been submitted. The INDC highlights adaptation as a priority for the country.
Oct 2015
The government of Lebanon requests support from NAP-GSP for the development of its NAP process
Apr 2016
Lebanon signs the Paris Agreement at the UN ceremony in New York. As for ratification, the Paris Agreement has been approved by the Council of Ministers and has been forwarded to Parliament
Apr 2017
Delegation from Lebanon attends NAP-GSP Regional Training Workshop for the Middle East and North Africa
Apr 2017
NAP-GSP supports with the development of a Stocktaking Report to identify entry points for the NAP process
Jun 2017
Initial formulation of a Readiness and Preparatory Support Proposal for adaptation planning to the GCF
Jul 2017
Lebanon’s NAP process is initiated in a stakeholder consultation meeting to provide a platform to discuss priority areas and identify next steps in the NAP, as well as to validate the Stocktaking Report
Jul 2017
The Stocktaking Report is finalised incorporating outcomes from the workshop
Apr 2018
The Stocktaking Report is shared with different stakeholders for review and comment
Jun 2019
Final changes being made to Readiness proposal before submitting to GCF for review and potential funding for NAP process and urban resilience

Country background, Sustainable Development Goals and Paris Agreement

The Republic of Lebanon is situated on the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea bordering the Republic of Syria to its north and east, and the State of Israel to its south. The country is recognised as one of the smallest countries on the Asian continent. Lebanon faces a myriad of development challenges, mainly related to lack of security due to regional turmoil, political instability, as well as massive inequality and a high level of poverty. To exacerbate matters, the crisis in Syria has led to influxes of hundreds of thousands of refugees. This situation makes it more difficult for Lebanon to deal with the effects of climate change and prepare for its future impacts, which are projected to become increasingly severe. 
 
With a temperature increase of 2 degrees, snow cover will be reduced by around 40 percent, stimulating a feedback-loop and accelerating temperature increase due to the lower reflective capacity of snow. As the snow melts earlier, winter floods will increase by around 30 percent, and the supply of water for irrigation will be disrupted, affecting agriculture and commercial and residential water use. Droughts are predicted to start 15 to 30 days earlier and countrywide droughts will be around nine days longer by 2040. The already dry Bekka and Hermal regions, as well as the south will experience the sharpest effects of these extended droughts. With less irrigation and more dry spells, soil moisture will decrease, and agricultural productivity will suffer. Sea levels are expected to rise by 30 to 60 cm in the coming 30 years; this will lead to seawater intrusion into aquifers, increase the risk of coastal flooding, coastal erosion, and the disruption of coastal ecosystems. Shorter ski seasons and loss of natural attractions through coastal ecosystem disruption is set to weaken the tourism industry and cause damage to the economy. Overall, climate change is expected to have huge impacts on the Lebanese economy; however, if meaningful adaptation measures can be taken soon, increased resilience can reduce impacts.
 
Lebanon has already assessed the impacts of climate change on its environmental and economic sectors through its First (1999), Second (2011) and Third (2016) National Communications to the UNFCCC. Besides, Lebanon commits to adaptation-related initiatives and has a number of policies, strategies, and plans relevant to climate change adaptation that provide the foundation for the country’s NAP process. Relevant plans are: National Sustainable Development Strategy; National Water Sector Strategy (2012); National Forest Programme 2015-2025 (2015); Ministry of Agriculture Strategy 2015-2019 (2015); Paris Pact on Water and Adaptation: Strengthening Adaptation Aquifers in Basins of Rivers, Lakes (2015); Regional Strategy on Health and the Environment (2015); Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC) to the UNFCCC (2015); National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan (2016); and Land Degradation and Desertification Action Plan (2017). The INDC outlines overarching objectives for climate change adaptation measures, such as: (a) to develop and implement biodiversity adaptation plans for ecosystems vulnerable to climate change by 2030; (b) to sustainably manage forest resources, safeguarded ecological integrity, and economic and social development through the implementation of the National Forest Programme; and (3) to increase water availability and improve water usage to decrease the sector’s vulnerability to climate change. The extensive climate-related information is complemented by a range of studies relevant to climate change adaptation. The 2011 National Economic, Environment and Development Study for Climate Change estimates the cost of adaptation options for the agriculture sector and proposes monetary and policy instruments to improve the resilience of this sector. The Technology Needs Assessment, developed in 2012, identifies water and agriculture as priority adaptation sectors, determines priority technologies in both, and proposes specific action plans for the deployment of these technologies. As a supplementary study to Lebanon’s Third National Communication, the 2015 publication Economic Cost of Potential Impacts of Climate Change in Lebanon estimates the cost of climate change impacts on the economy as a whole, and environmental and economic sectors in particular, and recommends measures to reduce such costs. The proposed interventions mainly focus on water and agriculture.
 

How has the NAP-GSP supported to date?

 

Conducted a mission
to Lebanon

 

The NAP-GSP undertook a mission to Lebanon in July 2017 and organised peer-to-peer meetings with key stakeholders and held a NAP orientation workshop. The meetings and the workshop were designed to introduce key stakeholders to the NAP process, advance understanding of the current climate change adaptation initiatives, and gauge the best entry points to advance the mainstreaming of climate change adaptation interventions into national and subnational plans.
 

 

 
 
Developed a
Stocktaking Report
 
Prior to the mission, a draft Stocktaking Report was produced, for its validation during the workshop. Informed by the mission and the assessment of the climate change adaptation interventions in Lebanon, the NAP-GSP drafted a final Stocktaking Report that included a road map for the NAP process, identified key entry points, and provided recommendations for the development the country’s NAP. The main gaps that need to be addressed to advance the NAP process, outlined in the report are: (1) to increase the quality and quantity of climate information in Lebanon, as well as its utility. Currently, there are no early warning system services and no vulnerability mapping, except for specific case studies; (2) to boost technical and institutional capacities in key ministries relevant to climate change adaptation; (3) to aspire a long-term vision and mandate. The current Climate Change Coordinating Unit (CCCU) lacks proper institutional arrangements and has inadequate technical and financial support to sustain the NAP process in the long term. Furthermore, there is no coherent national plan or strategy on climate change adaptation, thus (4) a stronger focus on implementation is needed. After almost six years, many of the adaptation interventions outlined in the National Communications have not been undertaken, as they were not prioritised at the planning or budget levels; the final priority oultlined in the report is (5) the need to mainstream climate change adaptation considerations into all national and sub-national plans and strategies.
 

 

 
Provided the country
with climate
finance-related support
 

 

 

Since 2017, the NAP-GSP has supported the government of Lebanon with the formulation of a Readiness and Preparatory Support Proposal for adaptation planning for submission to the GCF. The project titled "Increased climate resilience planning for municipal water resources in Lebanon" focuses on two main areas: i) Increased coordination and institutional and technical capacity for the NAP process, and ii) improved climate resilience water resource management in urban areas. The project will be implemented in coordination with UN-Habitat, the Global Water Partnership-Mediterranean (GWP-Med), and other national and international partners active in the field and in the selected locations.