Madrid, Spain, during an event held on December 12, 2019 in the pavilion of the EUROCLIMA+ Programme at COP25 on climate change,

the regional EUROCLIMA+ programme proposed to strengthen intersectoral cooperation to exploit synergies between food security, nature and risk and natural resource management.

The activity, entitled "The importance of an integrated land management approach to climate change", took as a reference the recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Special Report 2019 “Climate Change and Land”, which highlights the importance of an integrated land management approach to climate change. This approach leads to the fulfilment of the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC) of the Latin American countries.

The three projects presented have the potential to generate synergies. Raúl Artiga, Technical Advisor to the Executive Secretariat of the Central American Commission on Environment and Development (CCAD), which is leading the project “Capacity Building for Disaster Risk Reduction due to Floods and Drought and Building Resilience in Central America”, said that recently, at El Salvador's proposal, the Central American Integration System (SICA) region will be working on agriculture, forestry and other land uses (AFOLU), in order to achieve carbon neutrality in the region by 2040. "It is necessary to enable a set of synergies that already exist, in order to seek productive transformation of the agricultural sector in alliance with the environmental sector to maintain the region's natural capital and reverse the impacts of climate phenomena," he said.

Along the same line, Natalia González, Coordinator of the Climate Programme of ICCO COOPERATION, responsible for the project “Integrated approach for sustainable forest management and the dual role of forests in climate change,” supported the CCAD initiative, indicating that "it makes complete sense to exchange components and promote best practices in the AFOLU sector. It gives us the opportunity to exchange knowledge, work models and public policy advocacy,” she said.

For her part, Dina Sagastume, Deputy General Manager of the Rio Lempa Tri-national Border Community (MTFRL) and Coordinator of Food Security and Nutrition Policy, the entity that is leading the project said “Local policies and mechanisms for the articulation and implementation of public-private partnerships, for resilient food production in agro-food value chains in the Central American Trifinio region and Adamantine, Brazil,” noting that they see the benefit of synergies “in incorporating the forest, biodiversity and ecosystem approaches; resilient food production, and disaster risk reduction in the curriculum for the comprehensive training of professionals in the different countries.”

Finally, Marlon Escoto, Presential Delegate for Climate Change in Honduras and National Focal Point of EUROCLIMA+, emphasised that strengthening intersectoral synergies within the frameworks of national ODS and NDC policies is key to promoting a holistic vision of climate change, for those who promote public policy and for those who implement it on the ground.

“There are issues that we want to see on the ground and that are common; in our case (Honduras), the financial inclusion of climate, because there are no financial products currently on the market to accompany climate action at this level and they must be developed and tested in these projects. In these projects it is also important to find other common issues such as gender equity and equality, the explicit incorporation of vulnerable and indigenous communities, and that these projects must assume certain risks in order to experiment”, he pointed out.

He also said that “the spaces that are generated between projects must be used for the collection of information that allows our legislation to transcend territories and that we can advance at some point so that national contributions can be converted into regional contributions. These initiatives would allow us to generate a discussion beyond our country commitments, especially when ecosystems such as the Lempa River basin, the Caribbean Sea or the Gulf of Fonseca in the Pacific are shared.”

After the presentations, Andrew Scyner, of the Directorate General for International Cooperation and Development of the European Union G.2 - Programme Manager - LAC Regional Programmes, European Union, pointed out that “the important thing is that these dialogues and learning opportunities between components continue, and that they have the knowledge base to be able to nurture the political and economic decisions that we make at the donor level".

About EUROCLIMA+

EUROCLIMA+ is a programme financed by the European Union to promote environmentally sustainable and climate-resilient development in 18 countries in Latin America, particularly for the benefit of the most vulnerable populations. The Programme is implemented under the synergistic work of seven agencies: the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID), French Development Agency (AFD), Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), Expertise France (EF), International and Ibero-American Foundation for Administration and Public Policies (FIIAPP), the German society for international cooperation (GIZ), and UN Environment.

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