Project seeks to enhance resilience to climate change in the Mt Elgon region of the Lake Victoria Basin

10 December 2012 | News story

IUCN and its partners are implementing a project that seeks to improve the understanding of the science on climate change and demonstrate social and ecological resilience in the hotspots of the Mt Elgon region of the Lake Victoria Basin. The project will enhance learning on climate change adaptation from local to regional levels, and the evidence from adaptation approaches will inform policies across sectors.

The three-year project: “Implementing a resilience framework to support climate change adaptation in the Mt Elgon region of the Lake Victoria Basin” is being implemented by IUCN ESARO and the African Collaborative Centre for Earth Systems Science (ACCESS), in collaboration with the Lake Victoria Basin Commission (LVBC).

“The issues faced on Mount Elgon are considerable and through the project, we look forward to helping in addressing these issues and, using the learning gathered here, to influence policy and make positive change elsewhere in the region, and beyond”, says Eliot Taylor, IUCN Water and Wetlands Technical Coordinator for East and Southern Africa.

Funding for the project is coming from the U.S. Agency for International Development/East Africa (USAID/EA) with an overall aim of applying a ‘Climate Resilience Framework’ which will lead to stronger societal and ecological resilience to adverse climate impacts within the Mt. Elgon region of the Lake Victoria Basin. The project will be co-funded in part by the IUCN “Ecosystem Based Adaptation in Mountain Ecosystems” project, funded by the International Climate Initiative, which aims to strengthen the capacity of countries that are particularly vulnerable to climate change impacts, build ecosystem resilience for promoting ecosystem based adaptation (EBA) options and reduce the vulnerability of communities with particular emphasis on mountain ecosystems.

“USAID/EA is excited about the new partnership with IUCN ESARO and the continued collaboration with the LVBC to address the challenges of climate change in the region using a science-to-practice-to-policy approach”, says Maura Patterson, USAID/EA.

An inception workshop for the project was held in Kisumu from October 16th – 18th to increase the understanding of this project among stakeholders, seek synergies and explore partnership opportunities for its effective delivery.

The workshop was attended by 32 participants representing various partners, including the Water Resources Management Authority (WRMA) of Kenya, Mt Elgon Stakeholders Forum (Uganda), Global Water Partnership – East Africa Region, LVBC, National Environment Management Authority for Kenya and Uganda, and the Kenyan and Ugandan Wildlife and Forest Services.

Ali-Said Matano, Projects Development Officer of the Lake Victoria Basin Commission informed the workshop that the project will support the implementation of the LVBC’s Shared Vision and Strategy Framework for Management and Development of the Lake Victoria Basin. The project will also use networks and platforms from the Mt. Elgon Regional Ecosystem Conservation Programme (MERECP) to upscale activities successfully implemented as part of this project.

The workshop provided the opportunity for participants to contribute their ideas and suggestions towards the implementation of this new project. It helped validate the project’s theory of change, objectives, activities and monitoring and evaluation approach, as well as allowing for adapting some aspects of the project to improve delivery. This also encouraged ownership of the project by the participants and built a good platform for implementation.

Implementation and coordination arrangements, as well as the roles and responsibilities of the key stakeholders and partners for the new project, were discussed and agreed upon. Participants gave their insights and shared experiences from previous and on-going initiatives in the Mt. Elgon region which will assist in ensuring the effectiveness and sustainability of project activities.

For more information, please contact Eliot Taylor, IUCN Water and Wetlands Technical Coordinator for East and Southern Africa, on