Tracking Adaptation in Livestock Systems (TAiLS) Tool Spotlighted at SBSTA 58

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Developing practical methodologies for tracking adaptation is crucial for understanding the effectiveness of adaptation efforts across scales. Supporting innovative approaches to tracking adaptation in livestock systems is a key objective of the CGIAR Research Initiative on Livestock and Climate. A pioneer innovation in this regard is the TAiLS (Tracking Adaptation in Livestock Systems) tool. This tool empowers countries to monitor and report their adaptation efforts and outcomes in the livestock sector, fulfilling their reporting obligations under the Paris Agreement.  

To champion this effort, Lucy Njuguna, then Graduate Fellow at the ILRI Sustainable Livestock Systems Program, participated in the 58th session of the UNFCCC Subsidiary Bodies (SB58) –  Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA) and Subsidiary Body for Implementation from the 5-15 of June 2023. At SB58, she was a panel speaker in the ‘Global review and assessment on multi-level national adaptation planning for system transformation,‘ event held on 14 June, where she highlighted the cutting-edge tool.  

TAiLS tool is a web-based tool that  enables the governments of Ethiopia, Kenya and Uganda to monitor adaptation at the farm, subnational and national scales. In addition, to accounting for the context-specificity of vulnerability and adaptation options, the tool is designed to be integrated into the existing data streams within government.  

Globally, 39% of countries have included livestock adaptation measures in new and updated Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). However, there is a lack of tools well suited for assessing the implementation of these measures and their impacts. 

TAiLS tool, drawing from research conducted in livestock systems in Ethiopia, Kenya, and Uganda, encompasses three core dimensions of adaptation tracking: climatic hazards, climate change impacts, and adaptive capacity and actions. It employs 96 indicators related to these dimensions to capture changes and variations over time and across regions. Accredited users upload data, which is then validated, cleaned, processed and visualized to provide insights into progress and variations at both national and international levels. 

It is notable that the event took place on the sidelines of negotiations, particularly towards the establishment of the Global Goal on Adaptation framework. Showcasing the TAiLS tool and lessons from its development provided an opportunity to share knowledge on advances in practical approaches to tracking adaptation and ensure that negotiations are informed by the experiences of stakeholders in diverse contexts. 

Other panel speakers at the side event included Stelios Grafakos from the Global Green Growth Institute, Giriraj Amarnath from CGIAR Initiative on Climate Security and International Water Management Institute, Jayathunga from the Ministry of Environment Sri Lanka and Herrick Mwewa from the Ministry of Green Economy and Environment Zambia. 

This event is part of a broader strategy to engage with funders, partners and government officials at national and sub-national levels, emphasizing the significance of tracking adaptation to achieve Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) targets. Njuguna’s next endeavor will involve supporting governments to use the TAiLS tool to capture adaptation progress for inclusion in the Biennial Transparency Reports which are due in 2024.  

Header photo: Lucy Njuguna and other panelists at SB58. Photo by L.Njuguna/Alliance Bioversity and CIAT. 

Learn more about the TAiLs tool: Tracking adaptation in livestock systems (innovation brief, 2023). 

The TAiLS tool was developed under the Program for Climate Smart Livestock, which was funded by the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany (BMZ). Its further development will continue under the CGIAR Livestock and Climate initiative, which is supported by contributions from the CGIAR Trust Fund.

Story by Madison Spinelli and Lucy Njuguna. 

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