Cambodia

HEADER: UNEP ADAPTATION FUND PROJECTS/PROGRAMMES
COUNTRY: Cambodia
SUBTITLE: Enhancing Climate Resilience of Rural Communities Living in Protected Areas of Cambodia
SNAPSHOT
FUND: Adaptation Fund
EXECUTING AGENCY: Ministry of Environment, Government of Cambodia
FINANCING: $4.9M
STATUS: Approved
SECTOR: Agriculture

ENHANCING CLIMATE RESILIENCE OF RURAL COMMUNITIES LIVING IN PROTECTED AREAS OF CAMBODIA

Summary

UNEP managed and financed through the Adaptation Fund, this Project will work to Enhance Climate Resilience of Rural Communities Living in Protected Areas of Cambodia.

The project seeks to address the vulnerability of rural communities living in selected PAs in Cambodia to the climate change-induced hazard of erratic rainfall which is reducing food supplies as a result of an increased frequency of droughts and loss of topsoil during intense rainfall events and flooding. The overall goal of the AF project is to increase food supply and reduce soil erosion in and surrounding at least four CPAs in Cambodia by restoring at least 2,500 ha of degraded forests with plant species that are particularly appropriate for this goal, as well as intensifying and diversifying the productivity of at least 2,500 family homegardens in communities living around the CPA forest sites.

Project Objective

The overall objective will be achieved through three components:

  • planting protocols for ecoagriculture interventions;
  • concrete ecoagriculture adaptation interventions; and
  • institutional capacity, policy and upscaling of ecoagriculture interventions

ABOUT

The climate change-induced hazard of erratic rainfall, which leads to droughts and floods, is limiting agricultural productivity in Cambodia therefore increasing poverty levels. These events are predicted to increase under future climate change scenarios. Rural Cambodian communities living in Protected Areas (PAs) are some of the most vulnerable communities to these impacts. This is because of a high dependence on ecosystem services and lack of alternative, climate change-resilient livelihoods. As a result of decreased agricultural productivity, these communities are increasingly reliant on forest ecosystems primarily to provide food. In addition, forest ecosystems are a source of income for local communities who collect and sell non-timber forest products (NTFPs) and fuel wood. Widespread degradation of forest ecosystems is, however, preventing effective adaptation to erratic rainfall. To increase the resilience of these rural communities living in PAs, the Adaptation Fund (AF) project will use the eco-agriculture concept i.e. “a landscape approach to natural resources management that seeks to sustain agricultural/food production, conserve biodiversity and ecosystems and support local livelihoods”. The eco-agriculture concept will be implemented using two approaches: i) an extensive approach in which degraded forests will be will restored in Community Protected Areas (CPAs) at a landscape-level by planting predominantly indigenous tree species that provide food and are particularly effective at stabilizing soils; and ii) an intensive approach in which interventions will include enrichment planting of the boundary of rice paddies and other cultivated areas to enhance crop productivity, establishing trial plots of drought-tolerant hybrid rice cultivars, as well as intensifying and diversifying the cultivation of existing “homegarden‟ or “chamcar‟ plots.

Key Components

The overall objective will be achieved through three components:

  • planting protocols for ecoagriculture interventions;
  • concrete ecoagriculture adaptation interventions; and
  • institutional capacity, policy and upscaling of ecoagriculture interventions.

Component 1 will use bio-physical, ecological and socio-economic assessments to develop restoration and conservation agriculture protocols to be implemented in Component 2. This first component is necessary to ensure that the protocols are grounded in a participatory approach and capture indigenous knowledge, as well as being scientifically appropriate for the selected intervention sites.
Component 2 will ensure that the restored forests and productive agricultural areas are sustained and the benefits maximised. Alternative livelihoods established through the AF project will increase the resilience of local communities to the effects of climate change.
Component 3 will create an enabling environment for the ecoagriculture concept to be implemented in other PAs in Cambodia, through awareness raised at a local and national level, and replication of the strategy supported by policy revision where required.


ACTIVITIES

Component 1: Planting protocols for ecoagriculture interventions.

  • Bio-physical, ecological and socio-economic assessments of at least four CPA intervention sites undertaken to understand resource use, agricultural production, adaptive capacity, needs and vulnerability of local communities in terms of food supply in the face of climate change.
  • Cost-benefit analyses undertaken to identify the most appropriate tree and agricultural species to plant to enhance food supplies during droughts and stabilize top soil during floods.
  • Forest restoration and conservation agriculture protocols developed for at least four CPA intervention sites based on results from Output 1.1 and 1.2.

Component 2: Concrete ecoagriculture adaptation interventions.

  • Forest restoration and conservation agriculture protocols to build climate resilience (developed in component 1) implemented in at least four CPA intervention sites. Restored forests that supply food and stabilize top soil, and homegardens that supply a diverse range of food, despite an increase in climate change-induced droughts and floods.
  • Local communities trained on sustainable land management, including natural resources and technical conservation agriculture training, to maintain the climate resilience built through the interventions in Output 2.1.
  • Local communities‟ livelihoods enhanced and diversified through market assessment for the sustainable development of NTFPs and the promotion of sustainable alternative livelihoods strategies

Component 3: Institutional capacity, policy and upscaling of ecoagriculture interventions.

  • Stakeholder capacity for building climate resilience increased, including capacity to incorporate restoration and conservation agriculture interventions into CPA management plans, and implement livelihood business plans. conservation agriculture interventions to build climate resilience of local communities mainstreamed into Cambodia‟s adaptation framework and related sector policies.
  • Lessons learned on forest restoration interventions and conservation agriculture to build climate resilience captured, disseminated and used to develop a national replication strategy for upscaling of adaptation interventions in PAs.
  • Participatory Rural Appraisals (PRAs) of local communities at all CPAs in Cambodia undertaken to inform upscaling of adaptation interventions in PAs.
  • Policies and strategies that promote budget allocation for adaptation interventions that build climate resilience of vulnerable local communities in PAs supported/revised.

REPORTS / PUBLICATIONS

Project Documentation

Project/Programme Proposal: Cambodia

Assessments and Background Documents

Brochures, Communication Material

CONTACTS

Head Office
Name: Merlyn Van Voore
Email: Merlyn.vanvoore@unep.org

Asia-Pacific Regional Office
Name: Mr Mozaharul Alam
Email: mozaharul.alam@unep.org

Latin America Regional Office
Name: Mr Jason Spensley
Email. jason.spensley@unep.org

Cambodia Country Contact
Name: Mr. Lonh HEAL
Email: heal_lonhmoe@yahoo.com