CGIAR to stage new climate resiliency program, DA-BAR shares R4D initiatives

A multi-year research program called ClimBeR: Building Systemic Resilience Against Climate Variability and Extremes as part of the new research portfolio of the Consultative Group for International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) was presented to some officials of DA-BAR on 28 September 2022 in Diliman, Quezon City 

Led by climate risk specialist Adam Savelli, the visit to DA-BAR was part of a series of presentations of the full research program and planned activities to key national and local stakeholders. 

During the visit, assistant director for Programs Joell Lales, representing DA-BAR on behalf of Director Sailila Abdula, gave a short orientation on the mandate and functions of DA-BAR and mentioned the Adaptation and Mitigation Initiative in Agriculture (AMIA) Villages as examples of climate-resilient communities in the Philippines. 

The bureau, prior to the meeting, also provided related references on the conducted R4D initiatives on Climate Resiliency and Vulnerability Assessment (CRVA) and Climate Resilient Agriculture in the Philippines under the AMIA program. Contact references of various DA agencies that may be relevant to ClimBER were also provided. 

ClimBer aims to transform the climate adaptation capacity of food, land, and water systems in six countries, including the Philippines, ultimately increasing the resilience of smallholder production systems to withstand severe climate change effects like drought, flooding and high temperatures. The other focal countries are Guatemala, Kenya, Morocco, Senegal, and Zambia. 

The program runs from 2022-2025 and focuses on smallholder adaptation by identifying paths to climate-resilient peace, de-risking agricultural value chains, developing evidence-based policy pathways, and promoting multiscale polycentric governance and innovative tools to build the adaptive capacity of local communities. 

For the next three years, ClimBer hopes to achieve the following: bundled climate services are being used by at least 300,000 vulnerable farmers in six focal countries and at least 30% of whom are women; international agencies and policymakers to shape at least nine policies to strengthen agricultural resilience, with at least three aimed at reducing agri-related climate security risk; and third, at least USD 30 million in new investments were made through ClimBer's partnerships, focusing on disadvantaged groups, women, youth and vulnerable smallholder farmers, contributing to building systemic resilience. 

Savelli, who is the regional focal point for Southeast Asia of CGIAR FOCUS Climate Security, also discussed their plans, one of which is an upcoming inception workshop which aims to build relationships with local partners, co-design and validate work plans with partners, and discuss specific opportunities for collaboration. 

Further, he discussed the Climate Security Index and emphasized that Climate Security is Food Security as climate affects profit and production. 

"It was great to meet (you all) in person and discuss complementarity between DA-BAR’s work and ClimBeR. I will ensure that the AMIA research you have shared is included in our literature review," said Savelli as he thanked DA-BAR for their insights and hospitality. 

He commits to share additional details on the upcoming inception workshop to help identify strategies and other specific requirements for the Philippines as Southeast Asia representative in the ClimBeR Program. (### Maria Ruby G. Lumongsod)