By Innocent Anguyo
KAMPALA - Government has issued a set of guidelines that requires all districts and sectors to incorporate climate change impact mitigation and adaptation in their plans and budgets, as part of plans to increase effectiveness of intervention.
The guidelines will also require every government institution to allocate funds for climate change activities in their budgets and programmes.
The procedures are meant to operationalize the national policy on climate change and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, to which Uganda is signatory.
The National Planning Authority and the Ministry of Water and Environment issued the guidelines on Tuesday at Hotel Hotel Africana.
Water and Environment minister Prof Ephraim Kamuntu said Uganda is vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. PHOTO/Peter Busomoke
River Nyamwaba in Kasese recently burst its banks recent, leaving a huge trail of destruction in its wake
And with schools closed due to the floods, many children had to stay out of school
Representing the permanent secretary in the ministry of water and environment, Michael Nkulabo, the commissioner of the meteorology department, said under the guidelines, government has issued six basic steps for integration of climate change in the various district and sector plans and budgets.
The first step calls for the identification of populations who are most affected and are at risk, the existing responses and coping mechanisms, their locations and how the planned interventions can be targeted for effective output.
The second step recommends identification of policy options and activities that can help affected areas to mitigate and adapt impact of climate change while the third and fourth steps guide on the implementation of identified strategies. The last step directs on monitoring and evaluation of interventions.
The new measure comes as experts warn that the impacts of climate change are likely to hurt Uganda’s efforts to attain the targeted middle income status by 2040.
Water and Environment minister Prof Ephraim Kamuntu said Uganda is vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, as evidenced by the weather extremes such as floods and hail storms that have ravaged districts over the last three years.
“We should all appreciate that the mainstreaming of guidelines are a tool to ensure climate proofing the increasing strategic public investments for national development,” Kamuntu said.
Displaced children being giving food after recent floods in Kasese district
People in disaster-prone areas need relief when disaster strikes
The gravity of destruction left behind by severe changes in climate, like the recent floods in Kasese, is most times hard to come to terms with
At Hotel Africana on Tuesday, the chairman of National Plan Authority (NPA) Kisamba Mugerwa (L) welcomed minister Kamuntu who was the guest of honour at the launch of the guidelines. PHOTO/Peter Busomoke
Dr. Kisamba Mugerwa, the Chairperson for the National Planning Authority noted that Uganda’s economy is dependent on natural resources, making it susceptible to the hazards of climate change.
According to him, climate change “is no longer an environment issue but a development concern” that will be a priority in the second phase of the National Development Plan, currently being drafted.
Uganda is experiencing signs of climate change as exhibited by trends in average temperatures and rainfall.
Climate change models for the country point to an increase in temperature in the range of 0.70C and 1.50C by the 2020’s.
Experts have also noted that in recent years, floods have become more frequent, for example in the Teso region, which in 2007 received the heaviest rainfall in 35 years affected an estimated 50,000 households, leading to food insecurity due to loss of harvests.
Also related to this story
Uganda given sh48bn for climate change project
Climate change 'boosts conflict risk, hunger'
MDGs 'fail on climate change'
Opinions related to climate change
Climate change – is Uganda ready to adopt?
How to mitigate climate change in Africa
Climate change affecting food security