New platform for navigating ecosystem-based adaptation tools launched

Underwater photograph of a mangrove tree in clear tropical waters with blue sky in backgound near Staniel Cay, Exuma, Bahamas

While there are hundreds of tools and methodologies available to support people to adapt to climate change using ecosystem-based approaches, their limited accessibility can be a barrier to wider uptake by those who need them. 

The new ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA) Tools Navigator aims to tackle this challenge and guide users through more than 200 tools that can support their work and expand EbA.  

Adapting with nature 

EbA is a nature-based approach that uses biodiversity and ecosystem services to help people adapt to the adverse effects of climate change. For example, protecting and restoring forests to help stabilize the soil and reduce the risk of landslides during intense rainfall, and expanding green spaces in cities to reduce heat stress during heatwaves.  

As we face the twin crises of climate change and biodiversity loss, EbA can help to tackle both, together. 

Making EbA tools more accessible 

There are two main features to the Navigator - a searchable database and a space for users to contribute with their own tools or tool experiences:  

  • In the search interface, users can find tools and methodologies for specific needs by customizing their search using different criteria, for example according to ecosystem type, EbA stage or scale of implementation. The results generated provide information about each tool, including a link to the tool website, detailed descriptions that include its aims and functions, and how it can be used.
  • The contribute feature allows users to add information to the platform. Users can submit tools not yet included in the database, or report on their own experiences using a particular tool. Information can be provided on the context a given tool was used in, whether it was easy to use or not, or its barriers and strengths.  

By bringing this information together and making it more accessible, the EbA Tools Navigator helps users to see the range of tools that are available to support EbA and to choose one that fits their needs. 

Elisabeth Bernhardt, coordinator of UNEP’s Global Adaptation Network, said: “Tools like this are incredibly valuable for countries to be able to tackle the twin crises of climate change and biodiversity loss. We’re proud UNEP could include it in our newly launched Guidelines for Integrating Ecosystem-Based Adaptation into National Adaptation Plans.”  

An earlier version of the Navigator was released in 2019. Now as it moves online, we encourage EbA practitioners and planners to use the Navigator for their own work.  

The EbA Tools Navigator has been developed by UNEP-WCMC, IIED, IUCN and GIZ as part of the project ‘Ecosystem-based approaches to adaptation: strengthening the evidence and informing policy’ which is part of the International Climate Initiative (IKI). The German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU) supports this initiative on the basis of a decision adopted by the German Bundestag.

The EbA Tools Navigator is administered by UNEP-WCMC and is hosted by Friends of EbA (FEBA) 

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