Rio Conventions Pavilion

The Rio Conventions Pavilion (RCP) commenced on Tuesday, 9 October 2012, on the theme “Towards Integrated Science, Assessments and Monitoring for the Rio Conventions.” The event consisted of five panel sessions including: novel science-based approaches to assessing and responding to the biodiversity crisis; how integrated science can support the goals of the Rio Conventions; advancing the practice of vulnerability assessment for ecosystem-based adaptation to climate change; are we developing a growing body of convincing evidence on the effectiveness of ecosystem-based approaches (EBA) to adaptation; and science-policy interface for collaborative management of international waters.

Advancing the Practice of Vulnerability Assessment for EBA to Climate Change

Photo: IISD

Preeti Soni, UN Development Programme (UNDP), presented India’s experiences in EBA and conducting climate change vulnerability assessments. Reflecting on the case of Madhya Pradesh, she highlighted the value of incorporating the perceptions of local communities. Despite positive aspects of the approach, she observed some challenges, including: limited formal recognition; financial constraints; and community and political pressures. In conclusion, Soni said proactively streamlining EBA into climate change adaptation projects is crucial for the India’s National Adaptation Plan.

Photo: IISD

Caroline Petersen, UNDP, presented a project on EBA in mountain ecosystems in Uganda, Nepal and Peru, noting specific challenges in those ecosystems, including landslides and glacial melting. She highlighted the refinement of EBA methodologies, looking at predicted climate change impacts on ecosystem services for livelihoods, and health and safety.

Petersen discussed challenges faced in the project sites, including: forest fires; flash floods; drought; increased water scarcity; landslides; and soil erosion. She underscored the livelihood impacts of these problems and described nature-based interventions for adaptation to change, such as wetland restoration, water conservation and reforestation. Identifying monitoring and evaluation challenges, she said measuring projects’ impact on ecosystem services is difficult within short project time-scales.

About Rebeca Grynspan

Rebeca Grynspan was appointed by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to the position of UN Under-Secretary-General and UNDP Associate Administrator effective 1 February, 2010. Before joining the United Nations, Ms. Grynspan was elected Vice-President of Costa Rica from 1994 to 1998.

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