Adapting Turkey to climate change

06 Jun 2008

The first project dedicated to climate change adaptation in Turkey will be launched on 10 June 2008. The project is supported by the Millennium Development Goal Achievement Fund (MDG-F) jointly established by the Government of Spain and UNDP.

Ankara – The MDG-F was established in December 2006 to accelerate the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals at a global level. In this context a total of US$ 7 million was awarded to Turkey in April 2008 through a project.

The project entitled “Enhancing the Capacity of Turkey to Adapt to Climate Change” to be implemented through the MDG-F will be launched on 10 June 2008 at Hilton Hotel in Adana, at 10:30 am.

The project kick-off meeting will be attended by Sedat Kadıoğlu, Deputy Undersecretary at the Ministry of Environment and Forestry, Manuel Larrotcha Parada, Deputy Chief of Mission at the Spanish Embassy, İlhan Atış, Adana Governor, Ulrika Richardson-Golinski, Deputy Resident Representative of United Nations Development Programme, Tsukasa Kimoto, Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations Representative, Celal Armangil, United Nations Industrial Development Organization National Coordinator in Turkey as well as by representatives from the Ministries of Agriculture and Rural Affairs, Energy and Natural Resources, Industry and Trade and from the State Planning Organization, Çukurova University, NGOs and the private sector.

Following the kick-off ceremony, the participants will visit the Akyatan Lagoon, which is one of the largest wetlands in Turkey, located in Karataş town of Adana. Akyatan Lagoon that is an important example where the effects of human activities related to climate change can be seen hosts the biggest dunes of Turkey, as well as important bird and vegetation sites and is one of the worldwide important breeding sites of the green sea turtles (Chelonia mydas). The Akyatan Lagoon that is a natural asset vulnerable to climate change is protected under the Ramsar Convention.

In the framework of the project, efforts will be made to develop a National Climate Change Adaptation Strategy. The project will also develop and carry out early warning systems against natural disasters, climate change adaptation works on the use of water, land and energy as well as community based pilot projects, primarily in the Seyhan River Basin, on the use of agricultural, urban and industrial water, ecosytem services and nature protection fields. Campaigns will be initiated to raise awareness among local population. 

The project also envisages studies on how to minimize the negative effects of climate change on groups such as women, children, the elderly, the disabled and youth. Central and local government, national and local NGOs, universities, the private sector and academics will contribute to project success through active participation  and ownership in planning and implementation.

This project is the first project dedicated to climate change adaptation in Turkey and is a joint UN 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.