Latest cyclone highlights Mozambique's vulnerability to climate change

Posted on January, 26 2021

Innovative project redirecting funds to build resilience
Just ahead of the opening of the world's first ever Climate Adaptation Summit, Mozambique once again felt the impacts of climate change when it was hit by Cyclone Eloise. The massive storm caused widespread damage and flooding on a long swathe of the coast - impacting an area still recovering from cyclones Idai in 2019 and Chalane in January 2021.

Strong winds and heavy precipitation affected a large area in the Centre and South of Mozambique, particularly the port city of Beira and the Zambezi Delta, a WWF priority landscape. More than 1,000 houses have been destroyed and another 3,000 badly damaged with more than 160,000 people being directly affected. Vast areas of central Mozambique are now under water, meaning there are fears many people will lose their crops and livestock.

Mozambique is particularly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change - most of which are felt through water from extreme floods to droughts and storms.

It is becoming increasingly apparent that the world has to rapidly accelerate adaptation, particularly through nature-based solutions, to build more resilient societies, economies and ecosystems. But securing the funding for adaptation and nature based solutions require a rethinking of development pathways and a shift from business as usual approaches.

This is why WWF's Freshwater Practice is implementing the Mobilising More 4 Climate (MoMo4C) programme in Mozambique, which  aims to bring together entrepreneurs, firms, policymakers, investors and civil society organisations to develop green business propositions that tackle the impacts and causes of climate change in the Zambezi Delta landscape, and to attract investments to implement these initiatives.

Governments and private sector actors have funds that could be used for climate and nature-based adaptation solutions, but a lack of awareness has hindered their widespread use. The MoMo4C programme is working to help these actors better understand what funding opportunities exist, learn from successful financing models, and identify gaps that could be filled by investors. WWF-Mozambique will be looking to identify sufficient scale of investment to achieve benefits through innovative finance for climate action.

WWF-Mozambique has already started this initiative by first understanding the climate impacts on communities in the delta through climate crowd and will look to build on this to support on-the-ground business propositions with communities and the private sector for greater climate resilience for people and nature.
Aftermath of Cyclone Idai in Mozambique in March 2019
© Denis Onyodi: IFRC/DRK/Climate Centre
Bankable Nature Solutions are central to MoMo4C