For the winter 2019 round, the Fund is particularly interested in proposals that relate to the topic of climate action. However, all development-focused proposals will be considered. Here, read more about the importance of climate action, a central pillar of A Better World, Ireland’s Policy for International Development.
Our world is changing fast. In recent years, economic growth and the emergence of new technologies have transformed the way humans interact with each other and the world. Yet, despite the rapid pace of change and development, many have been left behind.
Throughout the 21st Century, the impact of climate change is projected to slow economic growth, erode food security and prolong poverty traps. Increasing temperatures have already made life hazardous in many parts of the world. Furthermore, climate change disproportionately affects those who are least equipped to respond and adapt to it.
Tackling climate change is the major global challenge of this generation and will require action at all levels, from local communities, national politics and from global governance. Ireland is already supporting efforts to keep any global temperature rise this century well below two degrees Celsius and even further to limit the increase to 1.5 degrees. We are an active participant in the United Nation’s Framework Convention for Climate Change and played a strong role in the adoption of the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement.
Alongside those efforts, our development programme plays a specific role, supporting those most affected by climate change. Our focus is explicitly tilted towards giving a voice to the people most at risk, including in drought-prone areas, in low-lying coastal areas and those living in extreme poverty, especially in Sub-Saharan Africa. The effects of climate change on their lives can be devastating – they are the people at the ‘frontlines’. Their voices must be heard and resources provided to find solutions. Ireland works to ensure that the needs of those furthest behind, and at risk of becoming ever more marginalised, remain at the centre of our approach.
‘Future proofing’ our development programme is a priority and climate action must be integrated in all of our work. An important example of this is in the area of agriculture and food security, which are central to a sustainable future. Natural resource depletion, environmental degradation and biodiversity loss are major concerns, both on land and in the oceans and waterways. Climate pressures will make it more difficult to ensure access to sustainable sources of nutritious food and so fostering resilience to extreme climatic conditions, ensuring people can feed themselves and their families, is a major concern.
Combatting poverty and hunger is one of Ireland’s flagship foreign policies, reflecting the historic focus of Ireland’s development cooperation. However, without climate action, this goal will become ever more difficult to achieve. A Better World, Ireland’s new policy for international development, provides a framework and a foundation to move forward. With climate action as a central pillar, it will guide our efforts to act effectively and to reach the furthest behind first.