|Some progress||No commitment to net-zero deforestation but repeated reference to the benefit of natural solutions for climate adaptation. Commitment to biodiversity targets.|
Nature based solutions
The term nature based solutions is not directly referenced within JICA documents but elements can be found in each of the sections below. The use of natural solutions for climate adaptation is a common theme.
JICA looks to support the Aichi Biodiversity Targets (2011-2020) and the post-2020 targets that have not yet been set. This includes recognising important protected areas and buffer zones that are inhabited by threatened or endemic species. It also looks to mainstream biodiversity in other sectors such as agriculture, forestry, fishery & tourism. There does not seem to be any explicit exclusions for activities in the JICA environmental policy.
Specific activities include providing technical assistance to build capacity in managing protected areas and for the promotion of ‘ecosystem based management. JICA will also look to increase support for the management of coastal ecosystems, including conservation of coral reefs and fishery resource management.
The IDFC group, of which JICA is a member committed at the Finance in Common summit to “Reaffirm their full support to address the direct drivers of biodiversity loss by mitigating negative impacts on biodiversity of their finance, using a range of approaches such as the implementation of environmental and social safeguards or guidelines, due diligence, off-setting, or the exclusion of activities that have harmful impacts upon biodiversity and ecosystem services”.
The JICA agriculture position paper has a climate change section which states “JICA will promote cooperation that contributes to adaptation measures, such as through irrigation and water management, variety improvement and pest and pathogen control, as well as to mitigation measures, such as the use of bioenergy and better conservation and management of farming land.”
JICA also has a set of guidelines for the agriculture sector. This promotes bioenergy, specifically the “introduction and construction of systems for the local consumption of local produced energy” as well as the commercialisation of bioethanol/biodiesel. Bioenergy will account for the ‘burden on the environment’, but it is unclear what this means in practice. JICA also looks to promote adaptation strategies, with a focus on water resources.
JICA looks to promote the sustainable use of natural resources for income generation in value crops such as coffee, fruits & honey. It is not clear in the cooperation strategy how this will be achieved. Support to member governments of the African Initiative for Combating Desertification (AI-CD) is designed to enhance food security in the Sahel & Horn of Africa.
There does not appear to be a commitment to net-zero deforestation across the portfolio in the Strategy for Natural Environment Conservation. There is also a focus on forests in the climate change strategy. Areas of the policy that apply to forests across both strategies include:
- A focus on promoting satellite based systems and other technology to catalogue and monitor forest habitats.
- Support the implementation of REDD+ (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation) programmes in countries.
- Disaster resilience through enhanced ecosystem services (Exo-DRR) is another chosen priority. This includes watershed management, satellite monitoring for forest fires and coastal management, such as the planting of mangroves to increases disaster resilience.
- Promoting the African Initiative for Combating Desertification (AI-CD), particularly through providing capacity to governments in the region.