Mozambique: Environment Mainstreaming and Adaptation to Climate Change


Southern Africa is one of the regions most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, and Mozambique is already experiencing the devastating effects of increased droughts, floods and cyclones on agricultural livelihoods in rural and coastal areas. The Joint Programme was created to ensure that environmental issues are mainstreamed in central and local plans and programmes, and to help communities adapt to climate change by boosting their coping mechanisms and broadening their options for earning a living.

The programme targetted Chicualacuala, one of the poorest and most remote districts in the Limpopo River Basin basin, and was a collaboration between six UN agencies, the National Government of Mozambique, provincial and district governments and civil society organizations.

At the national level, the programme supported the development and implementation of national plans and strategies and increased capacities in the area of environment and climate change. 

At the provincial level, interventions emphasized capacity building, integrating climate change into district plans and providing technical support in key sectors. 

At the district level, the programme helped apply the methodology CRiSTAL to analyse consequences of climate change, vulnerability and adaptation options, and to incorporate those findings in the elaboration of the Strategic Development Plan.

Key achievements included:

  • The programme contributed to the elaboration of the National Strategy for Food Security. A new standard model of risk analysis (based on community mapping and GIS) was applied in Chicualacuala as a pilot district, and replicated in more than 20 districts.
  • Climate change was firmly established in the national agenda and mainstreamed in poverty reduction plans, disaster management and food security plans and strategies. The capacity of planners was strengthened to gather and analyze climate change data and implement plans that integrate environment issues.
  • Seminars, training sessions and meetings were held to bring climate proofing to wider audiences. A community-based forestry management system was set up to help safeguard resources.  Irrigation and rainwater harvesting systems were installed to increase revenues and help vulnerable families adapt to climate change.
  • In the energy sector, the programme supported training and installation of photovoltaic systems for water supply and irrigation, and of improved cooking stoves at the community level. It also built capacity and introducted instruments to integrate climate change into district plans. Community members targeted by the programme, including community leaders, members of local committees and associations, participated in trainings and awareness raising workshops on the environment, adaptation to climate change and participatory planning.
  • The programme improved the water supply for local communities by constructing small water supply systems and creating water committees to facilitate their maintenance (six were equipped with photovoltaic systems for water supply and irrigation). 100 rainwater harvesting tanks were locally constructed. Members of the government and of target communities were trained in water resources management as a means for preventing and responding to extreme events of drought, flood and erosion.
  • The programme created and legalized four farmers' associations with more than 175 members. It introduced new crops and trained farmers in agricultural production, including conservation agriculture, which increased and diversified production. Eighteen treatment corridors were built to improve local veterinary services for livestock. Trainings were condcuted to improve the management of land and pasture in which more than 100 district technicians and community leaders participated.
  • Diversification of livelihood options was an integral part of most of the programme initiatives, which targeted women as main beneficiaries and included beekeeping, the development of integrated agro-livestock systems (including fish farming and small animals), and processing of agricultural and livestock products.
  • In 15 communities, Local Committees of Natural Resource Management were created with the capacity to levy a tax on forest exploitation. All the committees were trained in environmental conservation, climate change and related topics.


Click for more detailed results from the Joint Programmes in Mozambique.


The Joint Programme in action


Programme Dates 25 Aug 2008 - 31 Aug 2012
Net funded amount $7,000,000
Participating UN agencies FAO, UNDP, UNEP, UNHABITAT, UNIDO, WFP
National partners Ministry for the Coordination of Environmental Affairs (MICOA); Ministry of Agriculture (MINAG); Institute for Disaster Relief Management (INGC); Institute of Meteorology (INAM); Ministry of Energy (ME); Mozambique Institute for Agricultural Research (IIAM); Government of Gaza province; Government of Chicualacuala district; International Union for Nature Conservation (IUNC); Union of Small Scale Farmers (UNAC); Save the Children Fund (SCF)
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