A new data-driven tool helps identify ‘Adaptation Actions’ in Thailand’s water sector

21 December 2021

Projected future scenarios of intensifying impacts of climate change entail a great urgency for intensified adaptation efforts to help humans and nature cope with the adverse climate impacts. As the water sector is one of the key areas in climate adaptation, the Thai-German Climate Programme-Water (TGCP-Water) has been supporting Thailand’s Office of National Water Resources (ONWR) and water-related agencies on developing the ‘Adaptation Project Checklist’ which helps identify projects that qualify as adaptation in the water sector.

This will contribute to national and international reporting of climate adaptation by the water sector in line with Thailand’s National Adaptation Plan and the recently finalized agreements under the Enhanced Transparency Framework of the Paris Agreement.

The tool will enable Thailand’s water agencies to classify water management projects into three categories: 1) an adaptation project, 2) a project contributing to adaptation, or 3) a conventional water management project.

The results can be displayed in various ways to appeal to policymakers’ diverse interests. These include display per the total budget of adaptation projects; the number of adaptation projects implemented by organization; locations of adaptation projects classified by administrative areas, watersheds, or areas in up-, mid-, and down-stream.

Among the qualification criteria for assessment, the key ones include the identification of past and future climate risks, the mitigation of climate risks through the project, and the use of climate risk information as well as the exposure of humans, economic, or environmental assets. While the tool makes use of existing data from various sources, it has revealed gaps in availability of data which requires collection in the future.

Since the tool delivers information on the climate change adaptation relevance of water projects, the national water agency plans to make use of the results as criteria for selection and prioritisation when planning and budgeting water sector projects.

Buzzword: Climate change adaptation, water resilience, data-driven, adaptation action