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The development of Ethiopia's Climate Resilient Green Economy 2011–2014: implications for rural adaptation
- Paul, Christopher John, Weinthal, Erika
- Climate and development 2019 v.11 no.3 pp. 193-202
- climate, climate change, data collection, developing countries, emissions, environmental policy, interviews, livelihood, rural population, surveys, sustainable development, Ethiopia
- Anthropogenic climate change is predicted to have severe impacts on national economies and individual livelihoods, particularly for the world’s poorest populations. Measures to address climate change include both mitigation to reduce emissions and adaptation to climate change impacts. Prior to the Paris Conference of Parties 21 in 2015, few low-income countries had made extensive progress on either mitigation or adaptation. Ethiopia’s Climate Resilient Green Economy (CRGE) policy, introduced in 2011, stands out as an unusual example in its scope to reduce future emissions while also promoting adaptation through economic development. The formation of Ethiopia’s CRGE between 2011 and 2014 demonstrates how a low-income country can rapidly develop a comprehensive policy for climate change using green growth. A case from the Rift Valley, however, illuminates the challenges facing government efforts to have its climate policy reach its predominantly rural population. Using multiple methods of key informant interviews, analysis of policy documents, and survey data collected during three years of study, 2012–2014, the data suggest a confluence of factors contributed to the design and emergence of Ethiopia’s climate policy, notably Ethiopia’s institutional autonomy and capacity. Despite being at the global forefront of climate policy for low-income countries, the reach of the Ethiopian state to implement programmes in the rural sector remains limited. Ultimately, Ethiopia is a bellwether for the combined mitigation and adaptation policy responses needed in many low-income countries to promote sustainable development in the face of climate change.