Building resilience with nature: ecosystem-based adaptation in National Adaptation Plan Processes

Healthy and resilient ecosystems are recognized in various international bodies and agendas, including the Paris Agreement, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification. Specifically, ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA) as a nature-based solution is gaining importance since it recognizes that ecosystem services help reduce communities’ vulnerability to climate change. EbA can generate social and economic returns and provide multiple benefits—including improved health, biodiversity protection, food security, and alternative livelihood opportunities, all of which can build resilience to climate change. National Adaptation Plan (NAP) processes present a strategic opportunity to raise the profile of EbA approaches, providing a framework—and, potentially, financial resources—for implementation at scale. Based on this , the NAP Global Network undertook an review of 19 NAP documents to better understand the extent to which EbA, as a tool for adaptation, has been taken up in NAP processes. This analysis highlights the extent of integration and identification of ecosystems and EbA into NAPs, trends in how EbA was incorporated, and opportunities to strengthen the profile and quality of EbA.

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