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Sri Lanka: Agreement Seeks to Address Climate Change Impact

(Dec. 31, 2013) In December 2013, Sri Lanka and the United Nations World Food Program (WFP) signed an agreement designed to help some Sri Lankan residents in farming communities. The agreement, “Addressing Climate Change Impacts on Marginalized Agricultural Communities Living in the Mahaweli River Basin of Sri Lanka,” aims to help build diversified and resilient economic lives for those in the river basin affected by adverse changes in weather patterns. B.M.U.D. Basnayaka, the Secretary of the country’s Environment and Renewable Energy Ministry, and Mad Lofvall of the WFP signed the agreement, under which Sri Lanka will receive almost US$8 million in aid. (Sri Lankan Government Signs Agreement with WFP to Build Resilience in Adapting to Adverse Weather Conditions, COLOMBO PAGE (Dec. 23, 2013); WFP website (last visited Dec. 24, 2013).)

The money granted by the WFP will assist families in several divisions of two districts, Nuwara Eliya and Polonnaruwa, where irrigation of crops is dependent on rainfall. The project, which will be carried out by the Ministry of Environment and Renewable Energy, will include promotion of local availability of food, development of ways of making a living that are resistant to climatic shocks, and creation of systems of information for farmers about climate-related risks. The financial contribution will come from the WFP’s Adaptation Fund, which was set up to assist developing countries to foster adaptations to climate challenges under the Kyoto Protocol. (Id.; Kyoto Protocol to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change [UNFCCC] (Dec. 11, 1997), UNFCCC website.)