Projects

© WWF-US / Nikhil Advani
  • CLIMATE ADAPTATION PROJECTS DATABASE

    The climate adaptation projects database showcases climate adaptation initiatives around the world, drawn from a collection of other sources. It exhibits case studies of adaptation projects, which include climate hazards and impacts, and the corresponding adaptation strategies.

    View Database

  • PROJECT FUNDING

    Based on findings from Climate Crowd data collection, we encourage our partners to pilot on-the-ground projects which help people and nature adapt to a changing climate. In some cases we may have funding to support these projects.

    Learn More

    WWF recently launched a Wildlife Adaptation Innovation Fund, which supports the testing of innovative ideas that reduce the vulnerability of species to changes in climate.

    Learn More

  • WWF FUNDED PROJECTS

Building fog catchers and artificial waterways in Mexico

In recent years, farmers in the rural town of Santa Maria Yucuhiti in Mexico’s Oaxaca state, have struggled to cope with climate change.

“Santa María Yucuhiti has never been an easy place to live, however, the last seven years have been the hardest I can recall,” Eleuterio said during a Climate Crowd interview. “We have always dealt with frosts and droughts, but now they are harder and more unpredictable; we do not know when to sow in order to avoid losing crops”

--Eleutario, Farmer

To cope with the more frequent and intense frosts, in 2016, community land owners agreed to start sowing in areas bordering communal forests where crops would be less exposed to cold winds and thereby suffer less frost damage. However, the use of “slash and burn” farming in close proximity to forests resulted in two fires that went out of control, damaging about 15 hectares of native forest. To improve crop survival without adversely impacting forests, WWF funded an innovative project in partnership with Espacio de Encuentro de Culturas Orinarias (EECO), a local NGO, to install fog catchers combined with artificial water channels surrounding crops. Fog catchers collect water from the atmosphere during periods of drought and feed into the water channels which, in turn, create a micro-climate that reduces frost-related crop damage and maintains soil moisture. Despite a combination of frost and heat wave events in January 2018, crops in treatment plots experienced a 95% survival rate while the control plot had a 25% survival rate.

Materials

Raschel net made of propylene thread

Wooden poles to serve as support for fog catchers (~4-5 meters in length)

Drip tape

Poliduct 16mm

Terminal hose

Elbow hose

Mini valve

Couple hose

Cap polyduct

Galvanized tube ½

Galvanized elbow tube

1,100 liter water tank

Geomembrane liner

Seeds (corn, black beans, broad beans, mustard, broccoli, lettuce, chard and cabbage)

Barrier plants

Thermometers

Wheelbarrows

Padded material

Mattock

Straight shovel

Curve shovel

Pick

Implementation

Introductory meeting held with local indigenous authorities to present the project and collect baseline information (land use maps, type of soils, agriculture techniques used, types of crops, production and productivity).

Treatment and control plots selected based on suitability of the land, willingness of owners to participate, and suggestions made by municipal authorities. 

Fog catchers and water channel systems designed based on consultations with experts in soil, agriculture and engineering.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Water channels designed to be 0.5 meters in depth and 0.75 meters in width, with 3 meters between each channel as shown in the following figure. Channels are protected by a geomembrane to avoid percolation of water into the highly permeable soils. Due to its dark color, geomembranes can also absorb solar heat that is then released during nights.

Workshop conducted in June 2017 with selected farmers to introduce the project, provide training on installation of fog catchers, and complete installation

Second workshop conducted in late summer on water channel construction, which were completed over the course of two days

Community sowed 10 treatment plots at the beginning of September 2017

All planting and construction activities completed prior to November 2017, when the first frosts of the season typically occur

Monitoring of crop survival and functioning of water channels and fog catchers

 

Important considerations

  • An unusual hail storm killed all crops in both the treatment and control plots, after which crops had to be replanted. Any adaptation project should take into account other potential hazards that may occur and take steps to avoid or reduce negative impacts. This project was designed to protect crops against frost and drought events but not hailstorms. Project participants and organizers are currently considering additional measures to take to address hail in the future.
  • Water collection potential of fog-catchers can be reduced significantly with north winds, which cause fog to move rapidly. Community should use alternative water sources to feed the channels on these occasions (ex: installation of rainwater harvest systems as a back-up)
  • Farmers interested in replicating the system should conduct a soil profile analysis of about 1m in depth to identify the right way to build the channels and proper use of materials. The length of the water channels can be adapted to plots characteristics.
  • During the hot season, water channels must be empty to avoid the proliferation of mosquitos.
  • Farmers found that water channels could be used as a water source for wildlife. Some foxes have been seen approaching the site to drink water. However, farmers discovered two had drowned after falling in. To avoid this unintended outcome, farmers placed net ladders within the channels. Since then, there have been no reported animal mortalities.
  • Due to the emergence of cyanobacteria colonies, use of channel water for human consumption or irrigation is not advised unless properly treated.

 

Indicators

Direct Outputs 

- Four fog catchers installed 

- Ten waterways constructed 

Capacity Building 

20 volunteers the local community trained on fog catcher and water channel construction

Outcomes

During January 2018, a combination of frost and heat wave events affected replanted crops. Nonetheless, in treatment plots, 380 plants out of 400 survived after these events (95% survival rate) while only 50 out of 200 survived in the control plots (25% survival rate)

LEARN MORE
Implementing conservation agriculture in Tanzania to reduce vulnerability of rural farmers to climate change

In the highlands of Karatu District, farmers have experienced declining yields due to frequent drought and soil degradation, which is exacerbated by increasingly erratic rainfall. To improve farm productivity in the face of climate change, WWF-US worked with the School for Fields studies and in collaboration with the local community of Kilimatembo to apply conservation agricultural techniques including construction of trenches, ridges and terraces to prevent runoff, and planting trees and grasses to help stabilize the soil.

47,197 meters of ground contouring was applied to a total of 65 farms, comprising 199 acres of land. Additionally, 9700 seedlings of various tree species were planted over the course of the project. Ongoing monitoring efforts, primarily through community surveys, will track how these activities affect yields. 

 

LEARN MORE
Overcoming deteriorating water resources in Hoima, Uganda

The rural village of Kihigwa, located in Hoima District Uganda, once relied on a consistent pattern of rainfall that would come and go in moderation in accordance with the biannual rainy season. The ever-increasing impacts of climate change though have transformed this once stable system into a system of extremes. Consequently, the people of Kihigwa are being forced to adjust to longer and hotter dry seasons and shorter rainy seasons with heavier storms. While this change is having severe impacts on many aspects of life, the people of Kihigwa felt that their water resources were being degraded the most. They came to this conclusion after participating in several weeks of intensive discussions and activities that allowed them to analyze their situation and develop realistic solutions that would benefit the greatest number of people.

In Kihigwa, people have always depended on open springs to collect their water. In a changing climate, these sources became more prone to drying up during droughts and more susceptible to contamination from surface runoff during heavy storms. This led to increases in water-borne illnesses and an increase in the time needed to fetch water during drought. In response to this challenge, the community of Kihigwa worked with a local Peace Corps Volunteer to identify the most important water sources in the village. Using funds acquired from a WWF grant, four key open water springs in Kihigwa were transformed into protected shallow wells and springs. These actions have ensured that the water sources are protected from contamination at all times while also providing a stable flow of water all year round even during drought.

 

Indicators

Infrastructure

  • Four open water springs transformed into protected shallow wells and spring

​Capacity building

  • Females 15-24: 10
  • Females 25 and over: 25
  • Males 15-24: 22
  • Males 25 and above: 32

Outcomes

  • Community has access to clean sources of freshwater resilient to the effects of climate change
LEARN MORE
Recycling plastic bottles to build rainwater harvesting tanks

With longer droughts and rainy seasons growing noticeably shorter, Uganda continues to endure the impacts of climate change with few interventions rectifying the problem. To address increasing water scarcity, WWF implemented the Ichupa Upcycle project. Designed and led by former Peace Corps volunteer Michal Matejczuk, the project uses discarded plastic bottles collected from around the community as raw material for constructing a rainwater harvesting system that can store water for use during dry spells. 

The Ichupa Upcycle Project involved countless community members, masons, technical advisors, friends and thousands of patients, who worked together to construct nine (9) rainwater catchment tanks utilizing over 30,000 plastic bottles creating a holding capacity of more than 40,000L of rainwater.  The project not only serves as a solution to local water scarcity, but also contributes to local capacity building by bringing together different project beneficiaries to negotiate with one another, draw up a solution, source funding for various expenses and the necessary labor, find plastic bottles and the people to fill them, and ensure the timely completion of all project activities. The Ichupa Upcycle Project is in the process of becoming a registered community-based organization allowing those involved in the project and who cared deeply in its mission to continue expanding the knowledge they gained and achieve greater impact. 

LEARN MORE
Rainwater harvesting in Njombe, Tanzania

In Idunda village, Tanzania people are experiencing increasingly unpredictable rainfall, making it all the more important for the community to manage their water resources strategically.Through a grant from WWF’s Climate Crowd program, a local volunteer teamed up with teachers, students and families from the community to construct a new hand washing station and rain capture and storage system at Idunda's primary school. 

The rain catchment system, diverts roof runoff to a water storage tank and any overflow to an infiltration pond to minimize soil erosion and replenish groundwater.  The stored water is piped to the hand washing station located between the bathrooms and classrooms such that students can conveniently wash their hands before returning to class. Following construction and installation, teachers led a School Water Day, during which students participated in hands-on activities to learn about climate change, water conservation, and appropriate use of water for personal health and hygiene.

Materials

Hammer (Qty: 2)

Level (Qty: 2)

Tape measure (Qty: 2)

Plaster applicator (Qty: 4)

Trowels (Qty: 4)

Buckets - 20L (Qty: 5)

Shovels (Qty: 5)

Sand - 1200L (Qty: 1)

Bricks (Qty: 300)

Gravel and pebbles - 1200 L (Qty: 1)

Pipe cutting (Qty: 1)

Nails: Roofing (Qty: 1 kg)

Marker pens (Qty: 1 box)

Pipe connector ¾” (Qty: 2)

Masking tape (Qty: 1 roll)

PVC elbow 1.5” (Qty: 2)

Wire mesh (Qty: 1m)
Pick axe handle (Qty: 2)

Pens (Qty: 1 box)

Gypsum wood screws (Qty: 1 kg)

Nails 4” (Qty: 2kg)

Stopper nipple ¾” (Qty: 3)

Stand pipe ¾” (Qty: 1)

T-joint reducer 1” – ¾” (Qty: 1)

Color photocopying (Qty: 1)

Top-gutter (Qty: 1)

Nails 2” (Qty: 3kg)

Flipchart paper rolls (Qty: 2)

Overflow PVC 1.5” (Qty: 1)

Large 5” paint brushes (Qty: 3)

Threader tape rolls (Qty: 10)

T-joint ¾” (Qty: 4)

PVC elbow 3” (Qty: 3)

Tank connector ¾” (Qty: 2)

Gutter T (Qty: 1)

Red oil-based paint – 4L container (Qty: 1)

Boiler valve ¾” (Qty: 1)

Elbow ¾” (Qty: 1)

PVC pipe 3” (Qty: 2)

Overflow connector (Qty: 1)

Timber 2x4 (Qty: 6)

Timber 2x6 (Qty: 6)

Pick axe (Qty: 2)

PVC to metal adaptor (Qty: 16)

Gait valve ¾” (Qty: 1)

ITF standpipe ¾” (Qty: 1)

Corrugated aluminum roofing – 2m (Qty: 4)

Cement - 50kg bags (Qty: 6)

Bibcock valve ¾” (Qty: 7)

Polypipe roll class B (Qty: 1)

Oil paint for handwashing station - 4L (Qty: 4)

Face board 1x8” X 3m timber (Qty: 28)

Gutter clamps (Qty: 42)

Gutter – 6m (Qty: 14)

 

Implementation

Total completion time: 2.5 months

  • Initial project planning and design
  • Digging of waterline trenches and preparation of infiltration pond. Two teachers at the school led students in the construction of a rainy-season overflow infiltration pond and trenches for plumbing lines to and from the water storage tank, and personally installed the required plumbing and construct the hand washing station
  • Purchase and transport of construction materials
  • Rainwater gutter installation

 

 

  • Hand washing station construction and plumbing installation
  • Training of trainers for Itanana School "Water Day"
  • Implement Itanana School "Water Day"

 

 

  • Implement Pre-Survey about water conservation and sanitation
  • Implement Post-Survey about water conservation and sanitation

Important considerations

  • Since villagers provided much of the work that went into the project at the school, it’s recommended that constructions schedules be planned jointly with the school and village committee
  • Attend local plumbing/hardware store with community counterpart with draft budget in hand to ensure expected costs are accurate
  • Ensure a plan is in place for project maintenance. Idunda Village collects an annual tax to maintain the community’s water infrastructure, which now includes any necessary improvements made to this project. School teachers have agreed to maintain the supply of soap for the handwashing station

Indicators

Infrastructure

The following are the physical outputs of the project:

  • Installation of 80 meters of rain harvesting gutters
  • Construction of an efficient 6-faucet hand washing station
  • Construction of an infiltration pond for water overflow during the rainy-season in order to prevent erosion

Capacity Building

Students trained on proper hand washing, rainwater harvesting, water sanitation, water conservation, and climate change. These skills and lessons will help keep themselves healthy and hopefully will help inform them later in life about how to conserve water and their environment. During the gutter installation many of the older students learned some basic carpentry skills as well.

  • Girls, age 14 and under: 36
  • Boys, age 14 and under: 46

Outcomes

Quizzes administered before and after the School Water Day indicate that the majority of students who participated demonstrated an improved understanding of key concepts related to climate change, water management and hygiene following the event. Children with access to improved water access for sanitation:

  • Girls, age 14 and under: 36
  • Boys, age 14 and under: 46

 

 

 

LEARN MORE
Installation of weather stations around the world

We are installing a global network of weather stations and automating upload of data collected to the cloud. So far, we have installed weather stations in Tanzania, Zambia, Cambodia, Australia and the USA. Data from these stations can be viewed on the Climate Crowd homepage.

LEARN MORE
Constructing an irrigation system in Uganda to address unpredictable rainfall

Residents in and around Mayuge district have noticed especially dramatic changes in climate in recent years, including long periods of drought and excessive heat, punctuated by extreme rainfall and accompanying soil erosion. Additionally, the timing of the seasons have become much less predictable. These changes have had devastating effects in a society where nearly 90% of people make a living primarily through rain-fed agriculture.

To combat these changes, WWF partnered with a local volunteer to support a community-wide effort to construct a much-needed irrigation system to support local farms.  This project provided local farmers with the materials and training needed to build storage tanks sufficient for irrigating two acres of farmland. 

Materials

  • Sand
  • Wood poles
  • Wire mesh nets
  • Iron bars
  • Cement
  • Softwood planks
  • Nails
  • Binding wire
  • Bricks

 

Implementation

Construction began at the end of the dry season to ensure the system could begin collecting rainwater soon after completion. Approximately 60 members from the community came out each day over the course of one week to assist with procurement of materials, cement mixing and transporting of bricks. Additional loca people were hired to complete more technical work including brick layering and plaster application. Watch video

   

 

 

 

 

Indicators

Direct outputs:

  • 1 large (12ft x 12ft x 13ft) water storage tank,
  • 1 smaller (4ft x 3ft x 2ft) attached tank to be used for purposes of capturing run-off and filtering out sediment before flowing into the larger tank
  • A pipe used to capture run-off from the existing borehole (also filtering into the large harvesting tank),
  • A gas-powered water pump
  • 150-meter hose to distribute water to the crops.

Capacity building

Number of individuals who received training and participated in project completion:

  • Males, 15 and older: 117
  • Females, 15 and older: 32

Impact on farming

To date, farmers have expressed their satisfaction with the system, which they've already put to use. Currently they are using irrigation made possible by the project to grow pumpkins and passion fruit during the dry season, something that was only possible during the wet season in years past. Growing these crops at this time of year also means they can fetch a higher price at market, thereby boosting household income.

LEARN MORE
Restoring a watershed to help communities cope with drought

A series of Climate Crowd interviews conducted by our partners from the Institute for Ecological Research (IPE) revealed that changing rainfall patterns and drought have had serious impacts on people and wildlife living in Brazil’s Pontal do Paranapanema region. To combat these changes, WWF and IPE worked together on a project to improve the resilience of a local watershed and improve habitat connectivity through community-based reforestation.

Once mature, the newly planted hectare of tropical forest will provide direct benefits to people such as water provision services, decreased damage from wind storms and protection from soil degradation and erosion. The new forest will also contribute to important habitat corridors for local wildlife including the endangered black lion tamarin, as well as ocelots, jaguars, monkeys, armadillos, etc.  and create a buffers zone for the The Black Lion Tamarin Ecological Station.

Materials:

List of native species planted (sourced from local agroforestry nurseries):

Luehea divaricata

Anadenanthera macrocarpa

Anadenanthera colubrina

Lithraea molleoides

Schinus terebinthifolius

Platonia insignis

Terminalia argentea

Peltophorum dubium

Trema micrantha

Mabea fistulifera

Rapanea ferruginea

Gochnatia polimorpha

Cedrela fissilis

Copaífera langsdorfii

Poecilanthe parviflora

Lafoensia pacari

Casearia sylvestris

Cecropia pachystachya

Lonchocarpus muehlbergianus

Ficus insipida

Ficus guaranitica

Campomanesia xanthocarpa

Inga uruguensis

Inga laurina

Handroanthus chrysotrichus

Tabebuia chrysotrica

Tabebuia roseo-alba

Handroanthus impetiginosus

Handroanthus heptaphyllus

Jacaranda mimosifolia

Jaracatia spinosa

Hymenaea courbaril

Cariniana estrellensis

Mimosa bimucronata

Guazuma ulmifolia

Ceiba speciosa

Gallesia integrifolia

Heliocarpus popayanensis

Triplaris brasiliana

Cytharexyllum myrianthum

Pterocarpus violaceus

Aspidosperma polyneuruon

Eugenia uniflora

Sapindus saponaria

Croton urucurana

Maclura tinctoria

Enterolobium contortisiliquum

Dictyoloma vandellianum

  

Implementation:

Completion of 31 Climate Crowd surveys in communities living in the Pontal of Paranapanema region of Brazil’s state of Sao Paolo

Participatory planning of the area to be restored (a 1 hectare parcel of degraded land bordering the Black Lion Tamarin Ecological Station), including involvement of the manager of the protected area, the local communities, members of the watershed committees, local universities, schools and NGOs

    

Hiring of local contractors to conduct soil preparation using plowing, sorting and manual removal of grasses/other exotic species, soil pH monitoring and other measures in project site

Lectures and training workshops conducted in communities bordering the protected area

       

Sourcing of seeds from local nurseries

    

Planting of seedlings at the start of the rainy season through community mobilization:  Trees planted include native species and pioneers of rapid growth (50% pioneer and 50% non-pioneer species) and were spaced 2 meters apart, with 2.5 meters between each row

    

Participatory monitoring to monitor the healthy growth of planted trees, in additional to ongoing maintenance including site visits to perform ant (Atta spp.) control, prevent invasion of grasses, and replant more than 200 trees to replace those that did not survive

    

 

Important considerations

With any restoration project, continued maintenance post-planting is necessary to ensure seedlings reach maturity. A plan must be in place to manage encroachment of invasive plants and impacts from pests, for example.

Indicators:

Direct Outputs:

2000 tree seedlings (48 native species) planted, covering 1 hectare

Capacity Building:

Over 600 people from local community trained on local protected area and tree planting

Outcomes:

Immediate project outcomes include:

  • Economic benefits for the local community through the contracting of labor for soil preparation, and acquisition of native tree seedlings from local nurseries
  • Increased awareness of socio-environmental issues of the region through involvement of various social segments of the local community.
  • Strengthening of partnerships with government institutions, residents, NGOs, universities, river basin committee, companies, conservation units and schools

Ongoing monitoring efforts will measure tree growth and provide further insights on project outcomes over the next several years.

 

LEARN MORE
Teaching students how to plan and implement small scale adaptation projects

Families in Santa Lucia, Mexico are struggling to cope with hotter summer temperatures, colder winter temperatures, erratic rainfall, and pests, all of which have affected crop production. To address these growing concerns, a local Climate Crowd partner has teamed up with local teachers to instruct middle and high school students and the broader community on climate science and how to develop interventions that boost local resilience to the effects of climate change including through the construction of small-scale greenhouses and xeriscaped gardens. 

Materials

Plastic bottles

Non-recyclable/non-compostable refuse

Cob (mixture of soil, grass and sand)

Seeds

Trowel

Rope

Cacti

Pick axe

Rake

Bag of cement

Soil

Shovel

Bags of calcium

River rock

PCV tubing

Greenhouse film

Implementation

Project leaders conducted workshops on the basics of climate science for three groups of middle school students (ages 12-14) and one group of high school students (ages 17-20). Topics included the greenhouse effect, general impacts of climate change globally, and what can be done locally to help mitigate and adapt to climate change.

Intervention-specific workshops were also conducted for each group explaining the environmental benefits of each intervention and why they are important in the context of climate change. Instruction will also be provided on the basic steps of project planning. Students were tasked with submitting a report on their respective intervention.

Middle school students will be involved with implementing each of the three interventions at the school. In addition to assisting with construction of a "hoop house" garden at the school, the high school students will also assist with constructing hoop houses at six households within the local community. 

Hoop houses are a small-scale and inexpensive type of greenhouse. They use PVC tubing or rods and greenhouse film to cover garden beds. They help protect plants from freezing temperatures, heavy rainfall, and insects.

Xeriscape gardening is a type of landscaping technique suitable for arid climates that uses rocks and plants that require minimal water to survive.  

Eco-benches will be built using ‘eco-bricks’ that reutilize plastic bottles filled with non-recyclable or non-compostable refuse from homes, schools and public spaces. Instead of using cement to hold the bricks together, a mixture called cob (a combination of soil, sand, and grass) is used. Cement will be applied on the outside to create a waterproof layer.

A  project planning workshop will be conducted at the end to review what the students have learned over the course of the project execution phase and how to evaluate what was accomplished. Workshops and project activities will be integrated into the school curriculum to ensure the project continues to build capacity for students in the coming years.

 

 

Indicators

Direct outputs (anticipated):

  • The successful construction of 2 eco-benches, 2 hoop gardens and 1 xeriscape garden on school grounds
  • Construction of 6 hoop gardens at the homes of community members

Capacity Building (anticipated):

Number of youth with increased knowledge and appreciation of climate change adaptation:

  • 86 women and girls
  • 92 men and boys 

Impact (anticipated):

Improved survival of crops grown in hoop greenhouses

Direct Outputs:

  • Four fog catchers installe
  • Ten waterways constructed

Capacity Building

20 volunteers from the local community trained on fog catcher and water channel construction

Outcomes

During January 2018, a combination of frost and heat wave events affected replanted crops. Nonetheless, in treatment plots, 380 plants out of 400 survived after these events (95% survival rate) while only 50 out of 200 survived in the control plots (25% survival rate)

LEARN MORE
;