Efforts are underway in Guatemala to substantially increase sustainable land management (SLM) financing through climate change financial mechanisms. In implementing its Integrated Financing Strategy (IFS) to promote SLM, which incorporates SLM as a tool for climate change adaptation and mitigation, Guatemala is endeavouring to improve the livelihoods of the rural populations living in fragile and degraded areas. It has already begun to develop a legal and institutional framework to respond to problems resulting from climate change.
“National capacity in this area [the management of financial resources to address climate change] has been strengthened and we will certainly use what we learned in the workshop,” said Dr Max Gonzales Salan, Advisor to Guatemala’s Ministry of Agriculture, of the capacity enhancement and knowledge exchange workshop co-organized with the Global Mechanism (GM) in Guatemala City from 16 to 19 April 2012.
Having identified climate change initiatives in Guatemala, the workshop paved the way for national road maps for climate change-related resource mobilization for SLM. Not only was a cooperation process set up with the new representatives of the ministries of Environment, but a strong linkage with the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and Guatemala’s Ministry of Agriculture was established to create synergies in rural finance schemes that address SLM and climate change.
“The studies the GM has conducted in Guatemala were presented to the workshop participants,” said J. Esteban Moreno, referring to the two Incentive and Market-Based Mechanisms (IMBMs) studies demonstrating that when land users see rewards from investments in improving the land – whether these rewards be direct monetary payments, technical assistance, or even preferential market access – more widespread benefits are gained in the long term.
Part of the larger initiative “Integrating Climate Change Finance into Sustainable Land Management Investment Strategies,” a series of workshops funded by the European Commission and held in several countries, the knowledge exchange session in Guatemala was facilitated by GM’s Jose Miguel Leiva and Jessica Wade-Murphy of Climatekos, an international climate change consultancy firm. Participants included government and international organization representatives, research institution and private sector leaders.
The United Nations has classified Guatemala one of the five countries most vulnerable to climate change worldwide. In the last two decades, it has lost more than USD 1.2 billion in development opportunities due to natural disasters.
Through the initiative in the LAC region, which aims to increase SLM finance by capitalizing on climate change mechanisms, a national strategy of adaptation measures, particularly in the agricultural sector, will be developed and carried out.
For more information:
Mr José Miguel Leiva P., Regional Advisor for Mesoamerica
j.leiva (at) global-mechanism.org
Mr Alejandro Jacques, LAC Regional Coordination Unit Mexico
a.jacques (at) global-mechanism.org