Australia submitted our first Adaptation Communication to the UNFCCC ahead of COP26, delivering on our commitments and continuing our strong track record of achievement under the Paris Agreement.
Australia’s Adaptation Communication is a showcase of our practical adaptation action domestically and also demonstrates the adaptation support we provide in our region.
Read more about the Adaptation Communication.
Australia is resolutely committed to the Paris Agreement's Global Goal on Adaptation.
As a trusted partner for adaptation action in the Indo-Pacific region, Australia supports partner countries in adapting to climate change impacts.
The Paris Agreement and Global Goal on Adaptation
Australia is party to the Paris Agreement. The Paris Agreement came into force in 2016. It builds on ongoing international efforts to address climate change under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
Adaptation is one of the three pillars of the Paris Agreement, along with mitigation and finance. Regarding adaptation, the Paris Agreement aims to strengthen the global climate change response by increasing the ability of all to adapt to adverse impacts of climate change and foster climate resilience (Article 7). It sets out a Global Goal on Adaptation, defining it as enhancing adaptive capacity, strengthening resilience and reducing vulnerability to climate change, with a view to contributing to sustainable development and ensuring an adequate adaptation response in the context of the temperature goal.
Each year, parties to the Paris Agreement come together at a Conference of the Parties (COP).
We work with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources. Together we negotiate and meet Australia's adaptation obligations under the Paris Agreement.
Adaptation planning and implementation
Under the Paris Agreement, all parties must engage in national adaptation planning and submit an Adaptation Communication, as appropriate.
The National Climate Resilience and Adaptation Strategy sets out what the Australian Government will do to support efforts across all levels of government, businesses and the community, to better anticipate, manage and adapt to the impacts of climate change.
The Australian Government has released Australia's first Adaptation Communication showcasing Australia's practical climate adaptation action at home and in the region.
Australia's support for international adaptation action
Australia supports adaptation action globally, with a focus on the Indo-Pacific region. The 2017 Foreign Policy White Paper highlights that climate change, environmental degradation, and demand for sustainable sources of food, water and energy will be political, economic and security disrupters over the longer term. These challenges could undermine stability in fragile states and create conflict, irregular migration and disaster displacement.
The Australian Government continues to make major contributions to address the impacts of climate change through our development assistance program and international fora.
Australia's international Climate Change Action Strategy provides long-term strategic direction over the period 2020-25. Its three objectives are to:
- promote the shift to lower emissions development in the Indo-Pacific region
- support partner countries to adapt to climate change, and to plan, prepare for and respond to climate-related impacts
- support innovative solutions to climate change, including those that encourage private sector investment.
The Climate Change Action Strategy targets Australian development assistance to support the goals of the Paris Agreement and includes a focus on strengthening socially inclusive, gender-responsive sustainable development in our region.
Australia is committed to doing its part to meet the UNFCCC goal to collectively mobilise at least $US100 billion per year in climate finance for developing countries by 2020, and annually through to 2025.
The Australian Government exceeded its 2015-20 commitment to provide at least $1 billion in climate finance over five years, providing $1.4 billion to support developing countries reduce emissions and adapt to climate change. This included over $300 million over four years for climate change and disaster resilience support for the Pacific.
On 11 December 2020, Australia announced it would extend its climate finance commitment with a $1.5 billion pledge over 2020-2025 to be implemented through Australia's development assistance program.
Australia has a strong focus on financing for adaptation and resilience, and finance flowing to Small Island Developing States (SIDS) and Least Developed Countries (LDCs). In recent years:
- 70% of our bilateral, regional and global climate financing has gone towards adaptation efforts
- two thirds of our bilateral, regional and global climate finance has benefited SIDS and LDCs.
Find out more about Australia's climate finance commitments (DFAT).
Supporting our region
Like Australia, our Indo-Pacific partners have long demonstrated resilience in the face of challenging climatic conditions. The Australian Government continues to support partners to adapt to the impacts of climate change. Key examples of adaptation support to the region include:
- Australia Pacific Climate Partnership brings together Australia's regional investments to build climate change and disaster resilience.
- Climate Oceans and Support Program in the Pacific (COSPPac) supports 14 Pacific meteorological services. These monitor, analyse and communicate information about climate and oceans, including seasonal forecasts and sea level rise. This includes tide and wave data for shipping and fishing, as well as rainfall monitoring and forecasts to support planning in agriculture/food security, water and sanitation, and health.
- Pacific Blue Carbon Program supports national climate action and livelihoods in Papua New Guinea and Fiji, through enhanced measurement and investment in blue carbon ecosystems.
Australia is also stepping up its work with the private sector to achieve impact at scale in the Indo-Pacific region, and to support finance alignment with the goals of the Paris Agreement.
Find out about how Australia is working with the Pacific on issues of greatest concern to them, including climate change (DFAT).
Partnering with the international community
An effective response to climate change requires collective action by all countries and sectors. Recognising this, Australia contributes to action under multilateral platforms and with the international community to support greater climate adaptation action.
- As a member of the global Adaptation Action Coalition (AAC), Australia supports the AAC's commitment to practical climate adaptation strategies that deliver on-ground support for vulnerable communities, knowledge sharing and a joint approach to the protection of ecosystems and World Heritage properties from the physical effects of a changing climate.
- The Australian Government has joined the Coalition for Climate Resilient Investment (CCRI) as an observer member, working with the investment sector to better consider physical climate risks and create resilient investment solutions. The CCRI will develop tools to help investors make climate-smart investments in resilient infrastructure which supports stronger economic growth while safeguarding Australian communities.
- The Australian Government is leading global partnerships to protect rainforests such as the Asia-Pacific Rainforest Partnership and marine ecosystems, including the International Coral Reef Initiative and the International Partnership for Blue Carbon, which are helping to build country capacity and mobilise resources to scale up global adaptation and mitigation efforts.
- Australia contributes to the multi-donor Kiwa Initiative â€“ Nature Based Solutions for Climate Resilience, which is led by the French Development Agency (AFD). This Initiative aims to strengthening resilience to climate change through biodiversity conservation for Pacific island ecosystems, communities and economies.
- Australia has contributed to a number of Paris Conference initiatives including $5 million over four years (2016-2020) to the Climate Risk and Early Warning System (CREWS) initiative.
- Australia’s climate change strategies
- Climate science
- Climate services and tools
- International action
- Adapting Australia's unique environment to climate change
- Nature-based solutions for climate
- Ocean Sustainability and Climate Change
- Climate change and the agricultural sector
- Adapting to climate change publications and resources
- Paris Agreement  ATS 24 (entered into force for Australia 10 December 2016).
- United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change done in New York, 9 May 1992,  ATS 2 (entered into force generally and for Australia 21 March 1994).
- How Australia is working with our country neighbours to create a more resilient and secure region
- Australia's international Climate Change Action Strategy