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TAMD: A Pioneer Initiation to Track Climate Change Adaptation and Measure Development in Nepal

An international initiative on "Tracking Adaptation and Measuring Development (TAMD)"(Report here) has selected Nepal among the five TAMD countries in the world. As a follow up to the previous studies of TAMD carried out in Nepal (i.e. TAMD Appraisal and Design and Scoping study phase during 2011-2013), TAMD in Nepal is currently being undertaken as a feasibility study phase for the period from February 2013-March 2014 through the Ministry of Science, Technology and Environment (MoSTE) in technical collaboration with the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED)-UK and Integrated Development Society (IDS)-Nepal. The TAMD feasibility study in Nepal intends to develop an evaluative framework to track climate change adaptation and measure developmental progress against national development objectives in a variety of context and scales.

Realising the importance of adopting TAMD tool and customising it in the Nepalese context, the Government of Nepal has commissioned a ten member TAMD Coordination Committee (TCC) under the leadership of the Ministry of Science, Technology and Environment (MoSTE) and comprising authorised representative members from Ministry of Forest and Soil Conservation (MoFSC); Ministry of Federal Affairs and Local Development (MoFALD); Ministry of Energy (MoE); Ministry of Agricultural Development (MoAD); National Planning Commission (NPC); Institute for Social and Environmental Transition (ISET)-Nepal; Integrated Development Society (IDS)-Nepal; and International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED)-UK.

Towards the direction of developing an evaluative framework for Nepal, TCC has selected Rukum from mid-hills and Nawalparasi from Terai as pilot districts to further conduct research activities and testing at field level.

These districts were selected based on a set of selection criteria including climate change vulnerabilities identified by NAPA in Nepal such as landslides in Rukum and flood in Nawalparasi district. Currently, TAMD study team is undertaking feasibility assessments at different scales from local to national level. The team is contextualising different research tools, conducting assessment of various indicators and M&E frameworks and testing them at the local/district level of selected districts/villages to see the linkages between the set of selected interventions and identifying changes in vulnerability at the appropriate scale. Ultimately, based on these testing and empirical evidences gathered from the study, a contextual TAMD framework is going to be developed for Nepal.

Nepal Experience:

Dr. Dinesh C. Devkota, Policy Advisor, IDS-Nepal says, "In the long run, TAMD framework is important for the developing countries including Nepal, where this tool will support to track the funds with adaptation indicators from each projects but how to internalize the tracking framework at national and local level is a real challenge from policy perspectives".  

Ms. Prabha Pokhrel, Senior Sociologist and Chair of IDS-Nepal adds, "To find and access the existing data in relation to climate change and adaptation at community, cluster and household level in Nepalese context is difficult and challenging but is a real need for developing indicators to assess the development by adaptation funds, where periodic monitoring could be possible. Our methodological tools/approach such as Households Survey, Focus Group Discussions (FGDs), Key Informants Survey (KIS) and District Stakeholders Workshops during our field assessment in two districts of Nepal viz. Rukum and Nawalparasi has also strengthened the need of TAMD framework but required to develop the understanding of theory of change and its use at different levels."

 

"As we all know, development is intertwined with different sectors, therefore sectoral coordination or linkages is very essential for bringing sustainability to any development efforts and importance of TAMD framework becomes much more crucial while measuring the value for money and tracking of adaptation in coming days", says Anil Shrestha.

During our field works in the selected districts particularly in Rukum, we observed that the construction of road networks throughout the district was in progress, which is good for linking these road networks with the national highway for providing better access to the people. But the construction has given very little attention to the likely adverse impacts on the environment, particularly in these sensitive hilly landscapes. As a consequence, severe landslides caused by these development efforts can also be observed in addition to the climate induced landslides at several places throughout the journey. Access to road services may help in building community resilience but it may also lead communities to more vulnerable situation with immediate effects of climate change such as landslides if there is a lack of proper planning and effective coordination among relevant stakeholders at appropriate time.

 

Furthermore, we experienced significant data gaps during our study and while assessing the interventions selected for this study. We rarely found the local level data sets for these interventions at district level which makes the study difficult in establishing baselines for TAMD purpose. Likewise, our government system also either do not collect sufficient data or lack up-to-date data to monitor changes in community vulnerability/resilience. Therefore, Governmental as well as national/international non-governmental programmes/projects need to take 'SMART' measures in real terms to address these gaps in order to effectively monitor and evaluate climate change adaptation and development progress in Nepal.

 

Blog by:

Anil Shrestha, TAMD Technical Lead, Nepal 

Prabha Pokhrel,  Sr Sociologist & Chair, IDS-Nepal

Contact: anilinaus@gmail.com