To prepare human and natural systems for climate change-related events such as more intense and frequent heat waves, droughts, or floods, there are two main coping mechanisms: mitigation and adaptation. Despite increasing global efforts to reduce climate-relevant emissions on a global scale – also known as mitigation, total greenhouse gas emissions continue to increase. Therefore, the second coping mechanism – adaptation – is becoming increasingly relevant. Eco-inclusive, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) can play a crucial role in contributing to climate change adaptation by offering market-based solutions which help communities adapt to the effects of climate change. Eco-inclusive enterprises in the adaptation space are innovative, versatile, and entrepreneurial and thus able to exploit technological or commercial opportunities neglected by larger companies. They offer solutions such as water and energy conservation, climate-smart infrastructure, education and upskilling of communities and enterprises, etc. that help tackle reduced agricultural output, water availability, soil degradation, and/or water-borne diseases.
As part of SEED’s work in Malawi, Zambia and Botswana, SEED has built up insights into the relevance of SMEs to climate change adaptation and helps enterprises develop and scale adaptation-relevant products and services in this country context.
SEED also supports adaptation-relevant eco-enterprises through the SEED Adaptation Awards. This year, SEED has awarded Kalahari Honey , EcoGen and Wuchi Wami , for their innovative market-based solutions such as turning waste into renewable cooking gas, protecting beehives etc. while creating sustainable income opportunities for the people in their communities.