NCAP Ghana project: Climate-Poverty linkages

Submitted by Ben Smith | published 9th Dec 2011 | last updated 17th Mar 2020
Please note: content is older than 5 years

There is a strong relationship between climate and poverty levels. The key findings of the study showed that districts that fall within ecological zones with high temperature and low rainfall tend to have higher poverty incidences than those with low temperatures and higher rainfall. Poor households tend to depend heavily on environmental goods and services. With climate change exacerbating the capacity of environmental resources, the attainment of poverty reduction goals, both nationally and globally, will hardly be realized without due consideration for mainstreaming climate change into national development and poverty reduction programs.

Global and national poverty reduction and development programs (Millennium Development Goals, Africa’s Development, and Ghana Poverty Reduction Strategy) provide very little focus for climate change even though all documents recognize the importance of environmental health in reducing poverty.

To realize these goals in the face of climate change a number of recommendations have been developed as outlined below:

  • Deeply Involve Policy Makers: It is important to deeply involve policy-makers in integrating climate change issues into national development planning, emphasizing long-term planning and its implications for poverty reduction.
  • Encourage Climate Change Research and Education: Information and data are vital in the process of integrating climate change into national development planning.
  • Insurance Schemes: New insurance schemes should be developed for climate-sensitive sectors such as agriculture, health, housing and infrastructure, since some impacts of climate change may be unavoidable.
  • Fund Adaptation Initiatives: It will be important that effective bilateral and multilateral strategies are put in place to mobilize funds for priority adaptation initiatives. National incentives, such as tax rebates, should also be explored.
  • Strengthen Institutional & Organizational Capacity: To promote the mainstreaming of climate change into national development, the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Poverty Reduction (IMCPR) and the Technical Committee on Poverty (TCOP) should be re-activated.
  • Build and Disseminate Early Warning Systems: Build early warning system for natural disasters and effectively disseminate these warning to stakeholders especially at the local level. Also provide efficient mechanisms for disaster management.
  • Strengthen Regional Collaborations: Climate change issues cut across countries. Therefore, the learning of best practices and sharing of ideas and information on adaptation among countries in the sub-region should be explored using existing agencies/entities.

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