Highlighted results

2.5 million people with access to renewable energy

1 million hectares of forest under sustainable management

2.5 million farms more resilient to climate change

669,000 people benefiting from improved water management

Additional sources

Theory of Change -Climate

Download the PDF with the Theory of Change for Climate (autumn 2018)

Introduction

The consequences of climate change are becoming increasingly serious. The poorest people are often the hardest hit, women in particular. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) will only be achieved if governments and other partners all over the world work together to curb climate change. That is why 197 countries signed the Paris Climate Agreement in 2015.

In this agreement, countries agreed to limit global warming to well below 2 degrees Celsius, and preferably 1.5 degrees. They also acknowledged the need to adapt to the effects of climate change. Wealthy countries committed to helping developing countries in this respect, both financially and in other ways.

These commitments mean that countries have to change their way of working and investing in many areas. The Netherlands supports developing countries in their transition to low-carbon, climate-resilient pathways to development. It focuses on access to renewable energy, combating deforestation, climate-smart agriculture and climate-resilient use and management of water. In order to achieve good results, the Netherlands works with multilateral organisations, NGOs, knowledge institutions and the business community.

In climate negotiations, the Netherlands will continue to press for the proper implementation of the provisions in the Paris Climate Agreement. This serves the interests both of the Netherlands and of developing countries. A Dutch diplomatic campaign is urging other countries to do more to combat climate change.

Results 2019

Climate change is caused by a higher concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. The world has not yet succeeded in stabilising the increase, although some results have been achieved.

The Netherlands funds renewable energy projects in developing countries. Thanks to these projects, developing countries’ carbon emissions have already fallen by 26 million tonnes a year and 9.7 million people have gained access to renewable energy since 2015.

The Netherlands is also helping to combat deforestation in developing countries. This is important because forests capture and store CO2 from the atmosphere. In this reporting period, one million hectares of forest were managed better and more sustainably thanks to our efforts.

The Netherlands is also helping developing countries, primarily through water and food security programmes, to increase their resilience to changes in the climate that are now inevitable. The resilience of 669,000 people living in river basins and 2.5 million farmers has been enhanced.

Finally, as co-chair of the NDC Partnership, the Netherlands has ensured extra support for developing countries to enable them to implement their national climate plans (nationally determined contributions (NDCs)) more quickly and ambitiously in 2020.

Result areas

Renewable energy Forests Climate-smart agriculture Climate & Water Climate diplomacy

Featured project climate

Clean cooking

In the global energy transition, too little consideration has been given as yet to energy use in the kitchen. Cooking accounts for the greatest proportion of energy demand in many low-income countries. 2.9 billion people still cook by traditional methods, using wood, charcoal and dried dung. This restricts women’s ability to develop, contributes to deforestation and food insecurity and, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), is one of the main causes of early death in developing countries. It accounts for CO2 emissions equivalent to that of the global air travel industry.

Without a dramatic acceleration in measures, in 2030 2.2 billion people will still have no access to clean cooking methods. At the Climate Action Summit in New York in September 2019 the Netherlands called for more ambition, and was the first country to announce it would contribute to the World Bank’s new Clean Cooking Fund. The fund will help authorities in developing countries focus their policies on clean cooking. The Netherlands has also provided new funding to help the Clean Cooking Alliance mobilise companies and investors, and is helping WHO establish the Health and Energy Platform of Action, an initiative designed to push clean cooking higher up the political agenda in developing countries.

Renewable energy

Solar lamps are a great success in Kenya. Credit: Sven Torfinn.

Access to renewable energy

To halt climate change, we need to accelerate the transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy. At the same time, we must tackle energy poverty. Worldwide, 840 million people do not yet have electricity and three billion people cook using traditional, polluting methods. Energy poverty is particularly prevalent in Africa.

The Netherlands is investing in access to renewable energy for 50 million people between 2015 and 2030. During this reporting period, the Netherlands provided 2.5 million people with solar energy, biogas and better cooking appliances. In 2019 the Netherlands developed new programmes for clean cooking and solar energy in the Sahel and the Horn of Africa. These programmes are set to yield results over the coming years.

Open result area

Solar lamps are a great success in Kenya. Credit: Sven Torfinn.

Results

Indicator

Access to renewable energy

Progress

On track

The Netherlands has set itself the goal of providing 50 million people with access to renewable energy between 2015 and 2030. We attribute the results of projects supported to the Netherlands on the basis of the Dutch contribution to the total amount of public funding. The results reported over the past year bring the total to 9.7 million people since 2015. This is on schedule.

During the reporting period we were able to attribute energy access for 2.5 million people to Dutch funding. The Netherlands also prepared projects for investments by multilateral banks and the private sector, thus indirectly providing a further 15.6 million people with access to renewable energy.

Progress in result area Renewable energy

Although the results from the programmes supported by the Netherlands are encouraging, the global energy challenge is so great that the SDGs and the targets in the Paris Climate Agreement are still not within reach. CO2 emissions from developing countries and emerging economies continue to rise rapidly. Without a further acceleration of efforts, by 2030 650 million people – mainly in Africa – will still be without electricity and 2.2 billion people will still be using traditional, polluting methods of cooking.

The Netherlands therefore not only invests itself, it also mobilises others, like the World Bank and private investors, to make large-scale investments in renewable energy in developing countries.

It has proven particularly difficult to attract investment in clean cooking methods. The Netherlands is therefore working closely with WHO and the World Bank to generate more international interest in this issue

Domestic biogas in Africa

Biogas systems are usually underground tanks where dung from cows and pigs is converted to biogas (for cooking) and a residual product that can be used as organic fertiliser. Domestic biogas systems are suitable for small-scale farmers who have a few cows or pigs.

The Africa Biogas Partnership Programme has been working to develop the domestic biogas sector in Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and Burkina Faso since 2009. In 2018 the programme installed 6,600 biogas systems, serving over 40,000 people. The programme is implemented by Hivos and SNV.

The second phase of the biogas programme was completed in 2019 and all those involved met to share insights and lessons learned. The Ministry also commissioned an external evaluation, which showed that the programme is highly useful for African farmers. The moving film 10 Years of Powering Lives in Africa provides illustration.

Hivos project website

Read more about the biogas project here

Scaling Solar

Scaling Solar

In many places solar energy is already the cheapest and fastest source of electricity. Sub-Saharan Africa lagged behind for a long time, because government and electricity companies were often unaware of how to develop solar energy projects and attract investors.

The World Bank Group established the Scaling Solar programme with Dutch support to help countries develop solar energy plants.

In just under five years, the programme has proved to be a great success. Whereas fossil fuel-powered plants produce electricity for around $0.10 per kWh, in its first projects in Zambia Scaling Solar managed to achieve a breakthrough in pricing of $0.06 per kWh. This was followed by Senegal at $0.04 per kWh and, in 2019, by Ethiopia with $0.025 per kWh.

The Netherlands has now made extra funding available for solar power generation with storage, using the same approach.

Scaling Solar website

Read more about the Scaling Solar project here

SDG 7 Tracking

All countries’ progress towards the SDG 7 targets

Forests

An Indonesian woman harvesting leaves from the forest. The Green Livelihoods Alliance, in collaboration with Indonesian partners, helped her village obtain the right to sustainably manage the forest itself. Credit: Irpan Lamago.

Combating deforestation

The Netherlands seeks to prevent deforestation and loss of biodiversity. This will enable us to limit the impact of climate change and make people and ecosystems more resilient to it. In this reporting period the Netherlands supported 15,000 people who depend on forests for their livelihood. In several countries the Netherlands helped the authorities draft and implement legislation to improve sustainable forestry. Over a million hectares of forest were protected or brought under sustainable management. The results achieved are in line with expectations. Since deforestation is an urgent problem all over the world, the Netherlands intends to step up its efforts to prevent it.

Open result area

An Indonesian woman harvesting leaves from the forest. The Green Livelihoods Alliance, in collaboration with Indonesian partners, helped her village obtain the right to sustainably manage the forest itself. Credit: Irpan Lamago.

To halt climate change and loss of biodiversity, deforestation must be brought to an end everywhere. Forests are an important store for CO2, and they are home to 80% of terrestrial species. Over 1.6 billion people, most of them in developing countries, rely on forests for their livelihood.

The SDG 15 goal of protecting, restoring and promoting sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems is not yet within reach. Every year 7 million hectares of tropical forest are lost, and deforestation accounts for more than 10% of global CO2 emissions. Large-scale commercial agriculture and small-scale subsistence farming together cause more than 80% of all deforestation in tropical regions.

The Netherlands is investing in measures to curb deforestation with the aim of preserving the highly valuable forests of the Amazon, the Congo Basin, Southeast Asia and other regions. We are working with authorities in developing countries, providing support for the drafting and implementation of the legislation needed to halt deforestation and manage forests better. The Netherlands also helps companies and smallholders in heavily forested regions to practise sustainable agriculture, and to protect and restore the forest in a way that also guarantees them a better income.

Results

Indicator

Hectares of forest under sustainable management or other improved practices that contribute to reduced deforestation, more greenhouse gas storage or greater resilience of ecosystems and people

Progress

On track

In this reporting period over a million hectares of forest were sustainably managed. Several programmes came to an end in 2016 and 2018. Nevertheless, the number of hectares of forest under sustainable management remained almost the same thanks to good results with ongoing programmes. New programmes launched in 2019 are expected to produce additional results from 2020 onwards.

The Netherlands invests in the protection and restoration of forests that are rich in biodiversity and carbon while supporting local communities and small farmers in heavily forested regions. The objective is to make people more resilient to the impact of climate change and to preserve forests and biodiversity.

A Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH) programme has made progress in regions with high levels of deforestation in Indonesia, Brazil, Vietnam, Kenya, Liberia and Côte d'Ivoire. It has improved collaboration between the governments and key companies in these regions to reduce deforestation. Building on companies' commitments to stop deforestation, the programme is achieving results in the production of palm oil, soya, meat, cocoa, tropical hardwood and other products.

A programme run by the International Network for Bamboo and Rattan (INBAR) in Ethiopia, Kenya and Uganda focuses on helping small-scale farmers sustainably manage indigenous bamboo forests and manufacture bamboo products. The programme also rehabilitates degraded land through reforestation.

Indicator

Number of people living in heavily forested regions who receive direct support from programmes for sustainable agriculture, sustainable forestry and improved livelihoods

Progress

On track

During this reporting period the Netherlands directly reached at least 15,000 smallholders and other people in local communities who depend on the forest for their livelihood.

The Netherlands helps local communities develop new sources of income so they no longer need to cut down forest to make a living. An IDH programme, for example, supported small-scale producers and indigenous peoples in Brazil, Côte d'Ivoire, Ethiopia, Indonesia, Kenya and Vietnam.

A partnership of the World Wide Fund for Nature and IUCN NL contributed to improved incomes for local communities. In Myanmar support was provided to establish a committee for forest protection and sustainable forestry. The local population now have a say in the sustainable management of the forest. In Guyana communities received help to sustainably harvest and sell produce from the forest, such as honey and medicinal plants, thus increasing their income.

Several programmes came to an end in 2018, so fewer people were reached during this reporting period. Some other programmes could not indicate with certainty how many people were reached. In the case of some programmes it was not possible to say for sure how many people were reached. The actual number of people reached is likely to be higher than the figure given. Programmes launched in 2019 are expected to start yielding additional results in 2020.

Indicator

Public and private polices adopted, improved and/or implemented to help stop deforestation and promote sustainable forestry and reforestation

Progress

On track

During the reporting period the Netherlands contributed to better-quality forests and the preconditions for improved forest management through programmes designed to bring about better governance, better policy and better legal frameworks. To this end, the Netherlands works closely with governments and civil society organisations in developing countries to combat illegal logging.

The programmes for better governance also take advantage of the opportunities offered by the market. For example, the Netherlands supports an EU programme through which the European Commission supports governments in developing countries in improving their forest management in exchange for easy access to the EU market. Over the past year, major progress has been made in Guyana, Honduras and Vietnam.

Indonesia was the first country to complete all the steps and now has a complete and effective system to halt illegal logging. Since the previous reporting period the number of export licences issued for the export of legal timber from Indonesia to the EU has doubled to 70,000, worth a total of more than €2 billion.

The World Bank’s Forest Carbon Partnership Fund (FCPF) has also made significant progress in helping countries set up a monitoring system to warn of and prevent deforestation. A well-functioning monitoring system allows countries to show they are combating deforestation, and how much carbon is stored in the forest.

Initiative for Sustainable Landscapes - Mau Forest Kenya

The Mau Forest and neighbouring landscapes cover 400,000 hectares. Some 25% of the region has been deforested in the past several years. Deforestation imperils the region’s biodiversity and contributes to climate change. Furthermore, over 10 million people’s access to water is at risk, as they depend on the rivers that originate in the Mau Forest.

In collaboration with government, businesses and civil society organisations, the Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH) has developed a plan of action to protect the forest, and provide access to water, sustainable energy and sustainable alternative sources of income for local communities in the Mau Forest. Joint implementation of the plan has ensured that 60,000 hectares of forest are now being better protected and restored, and local communities are receiving support to enable them to acquire higher incomes in a more sustainable way.

Information on project via IDH

Read more about the ISLA Mau Forest Kenya project on the Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH) website

Green Livelihoods Alliance - Social Forestry in Indonesia

Read more about the Social Forestry programme in Indonesia on the

Tropenbos International website. The Green Livelihoods Alliance (GLA) is made up of Tropenbos International, Friends of the Earth Netherlands and the Dutch branch of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN NL).

Many local communities in Indonesia live in forested regions owned by the government. The Social Forestry programme enables communities to acquire the rights to sustainably manage the forest themselves, thus guaranteeing them access to their land and sources of income and ensuring that the forest is properly managed. Since obtaining land rights is a very complex process, communities need help with their applications.

The Indonesian partner organisations of the Green Livelihoods Alliance (GLA) lobby the authorities to simplify procedures and issue more permits to local communities. They also help local communities obtain land rights and manage their land in such a way that the forest is preserved and they earn an income. GLA has helped 30 communities in West Sumatra, West Kalimantan and other regions to obtain permits to manage 56,000 hectares.

Policy letter on forests

Read the letter to parliament on international efforts to preserve and restore forests

Amsterdam Declarations Partnershi

Link to the website of the Amsterdam Declarations Partnership, through which the Netherlands works to curb deforestation

Climate-smart agriculture

The Partners for Resilience partnership enables women in Mali to engage in climate-smart agriculture. Credits: CARE and Makmende Medi

Climate-smart agriculture

Small farmers in developing countries are vulnerable to the consequences of climate change. Unpredictable weather conditions, droughts and floods threaten farmers' agricultural yields and limit the availability of affordable food for local consumers. For this reason, the Netherlands is helping them adapt to the effects of climate change through its food security programmes. Support focuses on better collection of rainwater and improved agricultural techniques, for example, as well as better weather information and development of seeds that are better able to withstand drought.

These results are presented under the Food Security theme.

Food Security theme

The results for this result area are presented on the Food Security page

The Partners for Resilience partnership enables women in Mali to engage in climate-smart agriculture. Credits: CARE and Makmende Medi

Climate & Water

Sustainable water management in the Sahel. Credit: LuxDev Niger

Climate-resilient use and management of water

Climate change has major consequences when it comes to water. In some places, the risk of flooding is increasing due to rising sea levels, more meltwater from the mountains or heavier rainfall. Elsewhere, climate change causes drought and water shortages, while in other places, salinisation of groundwater and surface water is a major problem. The Netherlands’ water programmes help make people less vulnerable to these effects.

These results are displayed under the Water theme.

Water theme

The results for this results area are presented on the Water page

Sustainable water management in the Sahel. Credit: LuxDev Niger

Climate diplomacy

Development minister Kaag co-chairing the NDC Partnership at COP25.

Climate diplomacy

In the Paris Climate Agreement, countries agreed to limit global warming to well below 2 degrees Celsius and preferably 1.5 degrees. Countries are not yet doing enough to achieve this goal, however.
In 2019 the Netherlands engaged in climate diplomacy in order to encourage other countries to show more ambition on climate and undertake more action. This is important because countries must raise their level of ambition in 2020 and submit a new plan to show what extra efforts they intend to make over the coming years to limit global warming. This Dutch effort involved several ministries and was coordinated by the Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation. Dutch diplomatic missions and the Dutch special climate envoy were deployed to conduct an active climate diplomacy campaign. For more information on the activities undertaken and the results achieved, see the letters to parliament referred to below.

Open result area

Development minister Kaag co-chairing the NDC Partnership at COP25.

Video for Dutch climate diplomacy

Watch this short film made by the Netherlands to urge other countries to do more about climate change

Letter to parliament on European and global climate diplomacy

Read the letter to parliament on climate diplomacy efforts and progress

Letter to parliament on the results of COP25

Read the letter to parliament on the results of the UN Climate Change Conference in Madrid in December 2019 (COP25)

Letter to parliament on Dutch aims at COP25

Read the letter to parliament on Dutch expectations of the UN Climate Change Conference in Madrid in December 2019 (COP25)

SNV by Aidan Dockery

Background information theme climate

Background

In this results reporting, the Netherlands details the results it has achieved through its climate finance and diplomatic efforts. Climate finance includes more than just the budget for climate in the Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation (BHOS) budget. Other budget items also contribute to climate action in developing countries. Appendix 6 of the Homogeneous Budget for International Cooperation (HGIS) Annual Report for 2019 provides an overview of Dutch climate finance. The amount given here is the public climate finance provided by the Netherlands in 2019.

Glimpse into the future

The third Rutte government resolved to place greater emphasis on combating climate change and adapting to its consequences.

Through additional funding for climate action in developing countries, the Netherlands aims to better support the poorest and most vulnerable people. Many of these additional funds are being deployed through the new Dutch Fund on Climate and Development, which was launched in 2019. Extra resources are also being used to stop deforestation, and the Netherlands will join many other countries in increasing its contribution to the Green Climate Fund.

The Netherlands will continue to focus on those areas in which its knowledge, expertise and role in the world can make the biggest difference, such as access to renewable energy, climate-smart agriculture, climate-resilient use and management of water and combating deforestation. In doing so, the Netherlands will continue to work with multilateral organisations, NGOs, knowledge institutions and the business community.

In 2020 the Netherlands will continue its diplomatic campaign to urge other countries to do more to curb climate change. Development minister Sigrid Kaag will continue to co-chair the NDC Partnership this year.

Additional sources

You can find exactly how the budget was allocated in 2019 and which projects were funded on our budget website.

  1. Visit the website
    Programme budget Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation
  2. Select financial year 2019
Climate and Development Cooperation theme page

Read about current policy on climate

Dutch Global Issues Facebook page

Follow Climate on the Inclusive Green Growth Department’s Facebook page

Inclusive Green Growth Department Twitter account

Follow Climate on the Inclusive Green Growth Department’s Twitter account

ClimateNL climate dashboard

Click on this dashboard for detailed information on public climate finance provided by the Netherlands

Letter to parliament on Dutch Fund for Climate and Development

Read the letter to parliament on the context, goals, preconditions and structure of the Dutch Fund for Climate and Development (DFCD)

Dutch Fund for Climate and Development (DFCD) website

See the website of the Dutch Fund for Climate and Development for information on its objectives and working methods

NDC Partnership website

See the NDC Partnership website for information on its objectives, members and working methods

Biodiversity policy letter

Read the letter to parliament on the international effort to preserve biodiversity

Expenditure by channel

Metric

The budget in this figure is for the year 2019 and does not completely correspond with the results on this page, which have been collected between Oct 2018 and Oct 2019. More information on this can be found on the 'About the results report' page.