Accelerating Adaptation Investments for Resilient Infrastructure


6 May 2022, 9:30 CEST

This dialogue between governments, development partners and the private sector will focus on accelerating adaptation investments in infrastructure for a climate-resilient future.

Event description:

The Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management of the Netherlands and the Global Center on Adaptation (GCA) are jointly organizing this session to promote a dialogue between governments, development partners and the private sector on accelerating adaptation investments in infrastructure for a climate-resilient future.

This session will draw from practical experience in mainstreaming adaptation into investments in infrastructure at scale, including GCA’s ambitious Africa Adaptation Acceleration Program (AAAP), which serves as a vehicle to mobilize $25 billion for adaptation in Africa, and from partner experience in Europe, South Asia, and Small Island and Developing States.

Building on the key themes of the International Conference on Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (ICDRI 2022), the high-level dialogue will explore three questions:

  • How can countries put people at the center of infrastructure adaptation to ensure resilient assets translate into resilient services? Global estimates suggest that every $1 invested in resilient infrastructure can have up to $4 of benefits. Prioritizing targeted investments in infrastructure adaptation can reduce the cost of building resilience by 90% compared to an untargeted approach. The Netherlands and GCA are working with the Government of Bangladesh to assess climate risks to infrastructure, quantifying the impact to the provision of services at the household level and to the country’s development objectives. In Ghana, GCA, the government and partners, developed a roadmap of adaptation priorities to enhance the resilience of the country’s infrastructure. 
  • How can we leverage the nexus between infrastructure, Nature-Based Solutions, and conservation to mainstream nature into resilient infrastructure? Unlocking capital for investment in nature-based assets is a global imperative that is gaining importance as the world faces the climate crisis. The UK COP26 Presidency highlighted the need for governments and businesses to mobilize finance in nature, with only 3% of global climate finance currently spent on nature-based assets. Nature-Based Solutions (NBS) are a cost-effective solution to enhance the resilience of infrastructure. However, despite evidence that green-grey solutions offer benefits to protect or substitute infrastructure assets and services, governments and the private sector struggle to structure NBS investments that demonstrate clear financial and economic returns.
  • What are the innovative instruments required to finance resilient infrastructure? Climate-resilient infrastructure is quickly starting to be mainstreamed in general investment practice as institutions, organisations, and communities acknowledge the need to adapt to the impacts of climate change. For example, the EU Taxonomy (2020) established overarching conditions economic activity must meet to promote sustainability and the Climate Resilience Principles (2019) provide a framework to assess climate resilient investments. These frameworks are essential to ensure that public and private infrastructure investments achieve net-zero targets and development goals. However, there is the need to scale up adaptation investments in infrastructure and mobilize the private sector to bridge existing infrastructure gaps.