The 2nd workshop for the preparation of Provincial Adaptation Plan (PAP) for Northern Province, and for the establishing of provincial climate change institutional set up was organized on 7th May 2019, at U.S. Hotel in Jaffna. This event was organized by the Climate Change Secretariat of the Ministry of Mahaweli Development and Environment, in collaboration with the Northern Provincial Council, United Nations Development Programme, SLYCAN Trust as part of the TNC Consortium, and the Global Environment Facility.
The workshop focused as key aspects the development of PAP for the province and enhancing the institutional set up for climate action in the Northern Province. Multiple stakeholders attend this event which identified key areas of focus for climate vulnerabilities in the province based on group discussions with participants.
The need for evidence based and strategic actions to address climate impacts was highlighted by the Chairman of the Northern Pronvicial Council, Mr. C.V. Sivagnanam. He elaborated the example of recent extreme weather events which impacted Orissa in India, and how early preparations to address disasters greatly reduced the loss of human lives due to the weather.
“Ground level actions addressing climate risks, and developed evidence based adaptive measures that are participatory help to cut down the adverse impacts of climate change. This was seen through the recent disasters in Orissa. The preparedness of this region to face extreme weather events helped protect many human lives,” he added.
Highlighting the importance of addressing climate change at provincial level, Dr. Sunimal Jayathunga of the Climate Change Secretariat of Sri Lanka said: “climate risks impacts differently based on the context of each region. It is important to take into consideration these differences when developing adaptation measures”.
The workshop also focused on developing a Climate Change Communication Strategy for Sri Lanka, which focuses on increasing climate literacy and building awareness on climate impacts and actions to be taken to address adverse climatic impacts.
“To ensure that climate action is effective and efficient, as well as voluntary on the part of many stakeholders in the process, climate change communication and literacy play a key role. Development of a strategy to address this need is guided by the objectives of enhancing climate literacy and awareness leading to evidence based and participatory climate action at the ground level,” said Ms. Vositha Wijenayake, Executive Director of SLYCAN Trust.
Deputy Chief Secretary of Planning of the Northern Province Mr. R. Umakanthan, Deputy Chief Secretary of Administration Ms. R. S. Thurairajah, Deputy Director of Agriculture of Vavuniya district Ms. A. Shailabanu, Ms. Ambika Tennakoon and Ms. Shyamalie Priyanthi, Mr. Susantha Udagedara of the Ministry of Mahaweli Development and Environment were also among the speakers of this event.
SLYCAN Trust is a non-profit think tank. It has been a registered legal entity in the form of a trust since 2016, and a guarantee limited company since 2019. The entities focus on the thematic areas of climate change, adaptation and resilience, sustainable development, environmental conservation and restoration, social justice, and animal welfare. SLYCAN Trust’s activities include legal and policy research, education and awareness creation, capacity building and training, and implementation of ground level action. SLYCAN Trust aims to facilitate and contribute to multi-stakeholder driven, inclusive and participatory actions for a sustainable and resilient future for all.