Climate change affects all international activities of GRC. More frequent and stronger extreme weather disasters cause certain diseases to spread (e.g. malaria), while also impeding the safe access to drinking water and potentially aggravating the living conditions of vulnerable population groups. Adapting to the effects of climate change and reducing the humanitarian consequences are central issues for GRCs international cooperation, with a special focus on promoting resilience in disaster-prone regions. To integrate climate change adaptation aspects in its entire project implementation GRC cooperates with climate and meteorological experts, improves early warning systems for extreme weather events, implements forecast-based action planning and, together with the Federal Foreign Office, is working on an anticipatory financing mechanism for improved disaster preparedness.
Priority objectives in climate change adaptation
To identify future climate risks and affected areas GRC works closely with the Red Cross RedCrescent Climate Centre in The Hague (Red Cross/Red Crescent Climate Centre). Their expertise and background knowledge on extreme weather forecasting are vital to systematically integrate an innovative forecast-based financing mechanism.
Moreover GRC supports National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies and affected communities in developing coping capacities, which increases their resilience to the adverse impacts of climate change, by establishing cooperation and partnerships with important stakeholders as well as with governmental and civil society organizations (i.e. national meteorological offices, agricultural authorities and scientific institutions).
Activities that focus on the adaptation to climate change are consequently implemented in close cooperation with the National Societies. For instance, early warning systems are enhanced, special health projects are implemented, access to water is improved, agricultural cultivation methods are adjusted and targeted training in schools takes place.
Together with the National Society and relevant stakeholders GRC also regularly conducts climate risk analyses to identify current and future hazards caused by or related to climate change.
With these activities GRC and the whole Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement contribute to fighting the impacts of climate change in the most vulnerable countries.