Experiences of safeguarding livelihoods and promoting resilience through National Adaptation Plans: Case study Uganda (October 2020)

Originally published


This case study is part of a series that describes the steps taken to formulate and implement National Adaptation Plans (NAPs), with an emphasis on adaptation in agriculture (including forestry, livestock and fisheries). The series aims to provide national policy makers with valuable information from colleagues and counterparts in Asia, Africa and Latin America who are on the same NAP journey to address the multiple challenges posed by climate change. The case study on Uganda aims to show the links between long-term adaptation planning/NAPs and activities supported by the NAP–Ag programme in Uganda as well as the resulting impacts.


  • As a Least Developed Country (LDC) that is highly dependent on natural resources, Uganda faces climate risks such as changing weather patterns, decreased water availability and increasing frequency of extreme weather events.

  • Uganda's climate change response is led by the Climate Change Department (CCD) of the Ministry of Water and Environment (MWE), Uganda’s focal point for the United Nations Framework Convention for Climate Change (UNFCCC). The key strategy for addressing climate change is the National Climate Change Policy (2015).

  • The agricultural sector in Uganda contributes 21.9 percent of Uganda’s GDP and 68 percent of total employment (UBOS, 2014). Agriculture is recognised as a vital sector in creating climate resilience, given that it is one of the most climatevulnerable sectors, with impacts on food and nutrition security, employment and livelihoods.

  • Coordination of climate change work in the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries (MAAIF) is spearheaded by its Climate Change Task Force, which worked with the MWE to develop the National Adaptation Plan for the Agriculture Sectors (NAP for Agriculture). The Plan was launched in 2018 and includes prioritised and costed adaptation for 21 priority adaptation options in eight key areas.

  • Formulation of the NAP for Agriculture was supported by the UNDP-FAO NAP-Ag Programme. The process involved capturing lessons learnt from Uganda’s National Adaptation Programme of Action (NAPA), a stocktaking of climate impacts and vulnerability, training on appraising adaptation options and the subsequent inclusion of prioritised actions, and extensive stakeholder consultations.

  • Strong efforts were directed at formulating a gender-responsive NAP for Agriculture. Gendersensitive adaptation actions were identified through stakeholder consultations, and gender-responsive approaches formed one of the eight main areasthese impacts, are better reflected in future sector plans and activities.

  • Adaptation actions identified in the NAP for Agriculture continue to be tested and piloted, leveraging the numerous agriculture and development programmes currently being implemented. These include the demonstration of drip irrigation, use of improved livestock pastures in the semi-arid cattle corridor, and gendersensitive recommendations, also in the context of livestock farming.

  • The NAP for Agriculture will inform the overall NAP process in Uganda.
    Lessons learnt and good practices are being communicated through regular task force meetings and fact sheets to educate parliamentarians and planners about the NAP process.
    They have also informed the Third National Development Plan (NDPIII) for 2020/2021–2024/2025 and the Agriculture Sector Strategic Plan (ASSP) for 2020-2024.

  • Lessons learnt from the NAP for Agriculture development process make a compelling case for strong stakeholder involvement in NAP processes, the mainstreaming of gender-responsive actions, and deployment of institutional arrangements that have been proven effective.