Joint effort to better adapt to climate change

01 Mar 2009

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As part of the UN Joint Programme “Enhancing the Capacity of Turkey to Adapt to Climate Change”, which is implemented by UNDP and the Ministry of Environment and Forestry, a workshop was organized in Adana on 16-18 February 2009.

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The workshop on “Application of Systems Approach for Climate Change Adaptation in Seyhan River Basin” was attended by 95 experts from Adana, southern Turkey, Kayseri and Niğde, central Anatolia, representing the local government institutions, universities, non-governmental organisations in Seyhan River Basin.

In his opening speech, Deputy Governor of Adana Fikret Deniz said “Our world faces the global climate change problem. We should not be against the nature and change the balance. If we do so, we’ll pay for it in the coming future.”

UN Joint Programme Regional Project Coordinator Alper Acar explained that this would be the first workshop using systems approach (systems thinking, systems analysis etc.) for climate change to analyse complex systems such as the climate, eco-systems and human beings and to clarify the interrelations and interactions between these systems. Acar added: “The aim of the workshop is not only to establish a link between key issues related to climate change adaptation in Seyhan River Basin, but also to define the main themes and priorities for Community-Based Adaptation Grants Programme which will be undertaken as a part of the regional climate change adaptation strategy".

After the speeches, presentations on Turkey and Kyoto Protocol, Climate Change and Turkey, Climate Change and Seyhan River Basin were made and the results of stakeholder, livelihoods and ecosystem analyses of the basin were shared with the participants.

Following the presentations the experts were grouped under different themes such as Water Resources and Water Quality, Agriculture and Food Security, Natural Resources Management, Natural Disasters and Disaster Management, Public Health, Infrastructure, Basin and Coastal Areas Management and worked on determining the problems and priorities with the systems approach introduced by Dr. Deniz Koca of Lundt University. The results of the group work were integrated into the causal loop diagram of climate induced problems of the basin.

The workshop was realized in the context of the UN Joint Programme “Enhancing the Capacity of Turkey to Adapt to Climate Change”, that aims to develop capacity for managing climate change risks to rural and coastal development in Turkey. This UN Joint Programme is an initiative with the participation of United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) as the leading agency and coordinator of the project, the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and other stakeholders.