The Initiative for the Adaptation of African Agriculture (AAA)
The Initiative for the Adaptation of African Agriculture (AAA)
Promoting concrete projects on soil management, agricultural water management, and climate risk management to help African countries implement their Paris Agreement Nationally Determined Contributions


Africa is particularly affected by climate change. Six of the ten most affected countries in the world are in Africa, 65 percent of the African population is already affected and the continent already has more than 10 million climate refugees. The negative effects of climate change are reducing Africa's Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by about 1.4 percent to date and entail adaptation costs of up to 3 percent of GDP per year in 2030. Adaptation to climate change is therefore a crucial issue for African agriculture, as it poses a direct threat to the living standards and food security of the continent's populations.

Africa's production potential remains enormous. Indeed, 60 percent of the world's remaining unused arable land is in Africa. According to experts, African agriculture is part of the solution to ensure food security for Africans and the world. With adequate resources, African agriculture would be able not only to adapt to climate change, but also to meet the challenges of productivity and sustainable development.

Towards a Solution

Launched upstream of the 2016 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP22), organized in Morocco, the AAA Initiative aims to reduce the vulnerability of Africa and its agriculture to climate change.

The initiative aims to place the Adaptation of African Agriculture at the heart of climate negotiations and their financial aspect, and to foster the implementation of solutions, particularly within the framework of the Global Climate Action Agenda. It also aims to contribute to food security in Africa, improve the living standards of vulnerable farmers and promote employment in rural areas through adaptation practices to climate change, building the capacity of actors and channeling financial flows to the most vulnerable farmers.

Implemented by the AAA Initiative Foundation, this initiative makes a significant contribution to strengthening South-South cooperation. Indeed, it is included as an axis of cooperation in the framework of the agreements signed between Morocco and African countries (Côte d'Ivoire, Ethiopia, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Madagascar, Mali, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Sudan, the United Republic of Tanzania, and Zambia).

The AAA initiative aims to make South-South and triangular cooperation key mechanisms for sustainable development and the fight against climate change in Africa through the development and promotion of solutions to combat climate change and the promotion of technology and knowledge-sharing. The initiative contributes to the strengthening of collaboration and commercial networks in the service of Southern countries and to the implementation of solutions for development, thus contributing to the achievement of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

In 2017, the AAA Initiative started preparing bankable Climate Smart Agriculture Investment Plans (CSAIPs) for African countries, in partnership with local African experts and international partners such as the World Bank, the NDC Partnership- Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), The Agence Française de Développement (AFD) Group funds, International Centre for Tropical Agriculture) (CIAT), and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). CSAIPs aim to support priority investments in agricultural systems for enhanced productivity, adaptation and/or mitigation of climate change. They also aim to identify weaknesses in knowledge or readiness for implementation and propose actions to overcome these constraints. They build on countries’ ongoing strategies and programs and are implemented within the institutional and policy frameworks and capacity constraints of individual countries at both national and subnational level.

In 2018, three CSAIPs were already prepared for Côte d’Ivoire, Mali and Morocco, and three others were launched in 2019, for Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Congo, and Ghana.

Climate Smart Agriculture (CSA) is not a set of practices. It is an innovative approach to selecting and implementing agricultural practices, policies and services that are tailored to the context, in both space and time, and are integrated to work together, maximize synergy and minimize tradeoffs. It focuses on the three pillars of enhancing food security: (i) sustainably increasing production, (ii) enhancing resilience (adapting) to climate change, and (iii) mitigating greenhouse gas emissions, where possible and appropriate.

In order to contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the face of climate change, agricultural production systems must simultaneously address three interrelated challenges, namely increasing agricultural productivity and incomes in a sustainable manner, building resilience to the effects of climate change, and contributing to climate change mitigation where possible.

This is achieved through the promotion of climate-sound management practices that have a proven track record of evidence-based effectiveness, and the creation of an enabling environment in terms of policies, institutions and financing.

The result of the CSAIP is a suite of country-supported and scientifically vetted investments that are most likely to achieve national food security and climate targets. The tangible output of the CSAIP is a comprehensive document that summarizes (i) why CSA is important in the national context; (ii) which project concepts would, if financially supported, best achieve the desired CSA impacts; and (iii) a general framework for monitoring and evaluation for CSA that relates to other national monitoring frameworks.

The CSAIP development team may be selected within the country, contracted internationally or a combination of the two. All CSAIP teams need an in-country facilitator to engage stakeholders, a group that includes key individuals from multiple sectors specializing in agriculture, rural development, climate change and planning. For example, stakeholders could include high level representatives of government agencies and ministries, the private sector, relevant NGOs, farmer organizations and potential implementers and donors. Technical experts, extension workers, researchers, farmers and academics are all crucial to ensure that the investments are practical and viable within the context. Such diverse representation helps ensure that investments are aligned with policy, organizational goals and national priorities, and creates an authorizing environment for development of the CSAIP.

Contact Information

Name: Mrs Loubna Chamim Title: Advocacy Director Organisation: AAA Initiative Foundation

Countries involved


Supported by

World Bank, BMZ, Agence de Coopération Française (AFD), FAO, African Development Bank, ...etc.

Implementing Entities

AAA Foundation

Project Status


Project Period


URL of the practice

Primary SDG

13 - Climate Action

Primary SDG Targets

13.1, 13.2, 13.3, 13.a

Secondary SDGs

01 - No Poverty, 02 - Zero Hunger, 03 - Good Health and Well-being, 04 - Quality Education, 05 - Gender Equality, 06 - Clean Water and Sanitation, 07 - Affordable and Clean Energy, 08 - Decent Work and Economic Growth, 10 - Reduced Inequalities, 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities, 12 - Responsible Consumption and Production

Secondary SDG Targets

1.5, 2.4, 2.a, 3.9, 4.7, 5.1, 6.3, 6.a, 6.b, 7.a, 8.2, 8.3, 8.4, 8.10, 9.1, 10.6, 10.b, 11.b, 12.2, 12.3, 12.a, 15.9, 15.a, 17.1, 17.3, 17.6, 17.7, 17.8, 17.9, 17.14, 17.15, 17.16, 17.17

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