Final Evaluation of the project Eco-system based adaptation

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Evaluation Plan:
2017-2022, Mongolia
Evaluation Type:
Final Project
Planned End Date:
02/2018
Completion Date:
02/2018
Status:
Completed
Management Response:
Yes
Evaluation Budget(US $):
45,000

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Title Final Evaluation of the project Eco-system based adaptation
Atlas Project Number: 00062394
Evaluation Plan: 2017-2022, Mongolia
Evaluation Type: Final Project
Status: Completed
Completion Date: 02/2018
Planned End Date: 02/2018
Management Response: Yes
Focus Area:
  • 1. Environment & Sustainable Development
  • 2. Others
Corporate Outcome and Output (UNDP Strategic Plan 2014-2017)
  • 1. Output 1.4. Scaled up action on climate change adaptation and mitigation across sectors which is funded and implemented
SDG Goal
  • Goal 13. Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts
  • Goal 15. Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss
  • Goal 6. Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all
SDG Target
  • 13.2 Integrate climate change measures into national policies, strategies and planning
  • 15.1 By 2020, ensure the conservation, restoration and sustainable use of terrestrial and inland freshwater ecosystems and their services, in particular forests, wetlands, mountains and drylands, in line with obligations under international agreements
  • 6.6 By 2020, protect and restore water-related ecosystems, including mountains, forests, wetlands, rivers, aquifers and lakes
Evaluation Budget(US $): 45,000
Source of Funding: project budget
Evaluation Expenditure(US $): 43,000
Joint Programme: No
Joint Evaluation: No
Evaluation Team members:
Name Title Email Nationality
Arun Rijal Dr. arunrijal@yahoo.com
Narangerel Yansanjav nyansanjav@yahoo.com
GEF Evaluation: No
Key Stakeholders:
Countries: MONGOLIA
Lessons
1.

Lessons Learned

  1. Community organisations lack scientific knowledge and are ill-equipped for handling such projects so support to enhance their knowledge and strengthen their capacity will help to encourage them to continue in adapting risk of climate change or desertification and there by facilitate a cooperative approach for reducing damage from land degradation Lack of knowledge has been seen as a drawback in many projects limiting communities from taking precaution. Similarly, lack of knowledge, literacy and lack of capacity affect their ability to manage risk. Awareness generation on risk of climate change and its potential impacts, available adaptation measures and availability of appropriate technology helps to reduce damage. Moreover, linking them with weather monitoring to minimise risk related to weather. Increased economic benefits from sustainable agriculture practices and other income generation activities encourage communities to conserve their resources.
  2. Local adaptation knowledge is easily adapted by the rural communities. Local knowledge should be promoted together with scientific knowledge to respond to local situation as they are more easily adapted by the rural communities. Local communities were good in identifying signs of land degradation, climate change impact and proposing suitable and feasible mitigation measures. One example observed in project areas was that local community’s knowledge regarding constructing dry well and snow water harvest to address prolonged dry season and linking this with resolving pasture and agriculture land issues.
  3. The farmer exchange visits promoted farmer to farmer learning and technology transfer from one community to another. This is the best way for transferring technology to farmers as farmers could explain by simplifying the technical terms more appropriately to another farmer making learning more effective.
  4. Working directly through existing government structures brings dividends. The project chose to work directly with the Ministry of Environment and Tourism and local governments, rather than setting up parallel implementation structures. This decision has proved very successful not only in empowering government by providing experience and training, but also in developing effective government “ownership”, engagement, participation and motivation, thereby promoting long-term sustainability of the project’s achievements.
  5. Designing a project linking various institutions from grassroots level institutions, government agencies, local authorities and communities generates huge benefits for sustainability, and through the synergies developed provides the intervention with much greater effectiveness than that which can be achieved by stand-alone projects. The project chose to work with various institutions at different levels and local communities. This helped in empowering these institutions by providing experience, training and equipping in a well-funded and well-equipped environment and also in developing effective “ownership”, engagement, participation and motivation, thereby promoting long-term sustainability of the project’s achievements at community levels. It also helped to generate local guardianship (from community organisations or groups, local authorities and National Government’s relevant sectors) that made project implementation efficient and effective.
  6. Community participation in the project design, formulation of implementation modality, implementation and monitoring is very important. This will help to implement projects effectively and also make activities sustainable. In this project, the inclusion of local communities, through the small grants approach helped local communities to identify environmental issues that need to be addressed and enabled them to innovate a wide range of adaptation measures and livelihood improvement strategies.
  7. Local communities understand causes of pastureland degradation and environmental problems but due to lack of livelihood alternatives they are forced to continue unsustainable practices so if project designs consider alternatives for betterment of livelihood by improving their practices then locals will cooperate. The local communities understand and appreciate that the livelihood activities like coal and wood burning, overgrazing and poor water and soil management accelerate environmental degradation. They also showed willingness to change their practices if they are provided with alternative environmentally sound practices like water efficient agriculture and bio-briquette which support their livelihoods.
  8. Constant contacts with communities are vital to community-based water and land degradation risk management projects. Good communication and regular communication in relation to project activities with the communities helps to promote successful, community-based projects as they built trust and motivation of the targeted local communities. To achieve this, the quality and commitment of those employed at the sites are key attributes of a project. This project has been benefited from efficient site coordinators and technical staff. But what the evaluation team believes to be the most important factor is the almost constant contact that they have had with the communities throughout the project’s lifetime. This frequency of contact has undoubtedly enabled the project to build high levels of trust, capacity, and motivation which in turn has facilitated the change in people's mind-sets and behaviours and brought about the success of the EbA schemes. The role of the National Project coordinator is very vital in motivating field staffs.
  9. High participation of women in groups and forming women’s groups will assure more success.Women were found more serious in EbA activities. It was observed that the groups with more women and women groups were more efficient in implementation and functioning and able to generate expected results. This also helped to generate leadership and develop decision making authority among them and also increased income through income generating activities (handicrafts making, sustainable and water efficient agriculture, livestock, cottage industry etc., also see outputs) improving their livelihoods. Women were found to be more engaged in EbA activities. This could be because they are the one who most interact with natural resources through activities like water collection, livestock grazing, cooking and working in agriculture field. The community groups with domination of women and women’s group were most successfully implementing project activities and able to achieve desired results.

Findings
1.

Findings 

Project Design/Formulation 

The project was designed to address the identified problem by developing strategy documents, generation of knowledge through research on biological, environmental, socio-economic and economic aspects, establishment of institution for river basin management, diversification of income generation and value addition for improving economic return to enhance resilience to climate change, capacity enhancement of communities to monitor natural resource and climate change impact and adaptive management of water sources, mainstream river basin management in national resource use planning, and implementation mechanism in sector policy, support development of water and pasture management and upscaling best practices identified. Project was aimed at reducing climate change risks to farmers and pastoralists by providing weather/climate information through meteorological observations and implementing various adaptation activities. The design of RRF was very clear with clear output milestones, activities for each output and SMART indicators to monitor implementation and achievements. The project was designed to work at both a macro level (national government scale) and a micro level (local government and community level). On the national level, it aimed to identify policy gaps and recommend legislative needs, develop policies for securing river basin and making development activities climate friendly. At the micro level it aimed to work at developing capacity of local government and community groups to address water, weather and livelihood related issues, generating awareness among farmers and pastoralists, facilitating decision making of local government and farmers based on weather forecasts, water harvesting to enhance crop productivity, forestry practices, alternative energy like solar and bio-briquette and diversification of livelihood options to improve household income and sustainable agriculture practices. The sites namely Altai Mountains and Great lakes basin, Turgen and Khahiraa river basins and Ulz river basin in Eastern Steppe were identified based on the information on vulnerability of the land and water resources.


Tag: Climate Change Adaptation Disaster risk management Resilience building Energy Natural Resouce management River basin management Water resources National Local Governance Programme/Project Design Policy Advisory Data and Statistics

2.

Analysis of Logical Framework 

The log frame has a single development objective, 3 Components and 5 outcomes. The extensive activities are also listed in full, complete with their own indicators. The objectives, components and outputs are clear and appropriate to the issues and also designed considering the timeframe of the project. The project also utilised lessons from other projects (see in 3.1.3) and also the capacity of executing/implementing agencies was considered while developing project activities (see 3.1.4 & 3.1.8). Project design sufficiently analysed potential risks and assumptions (see 3.1.2) related to the project and it is well articulated in the PIF and PRODOC. Roles and responsibilities of the partners were made clear from the project design phase (see 3.1.8). The logical framework was revised during inception workshop in April 2012 which dropped one output of the component 2 from the original log frame. The revised log-frame includes 3 Components, 9 outputs and 10 main indicators. The indicators of the log frame are relevant, precise and mostly SMART (Specific; Measurable; Achievable and attributable; Relevant and realistic; Time-bound, timely, tractable and targeted). All are based on sound scientific monitoring protocols using the most relevant measures for a given criteria.


Tag: Programme/Project Design Results-Based Management Theory of Change

3.

Assumptions and Risks

There were five risks identified in the project document and all of them were ranked between 3 and 4 scale which is medium risk. During inception workshop, all risks were analysed and found that their magnitude is decreased due recent legal and institutional arrangements which created enabling environment for project implementation. All the risks and assumptions outlined in the project document were logical and robust. These helped to identify appropriate activities and required precaution measures to address the risks and assumptions. Arrangements for all risks and assumptions other than related to natural fluctuation were made and with these arrangements, the project was able to implement activities effectively to achieve the targeted results. One assumption that whether there will be government willing and able to finance project activities. Government suggested that user associations would contribute fees t the interventions. Recent amendment to the law on water provides for an institutional basis for integrated river basin management. Project assumed to receive support from government authorities and key stakeholders and involvement of local government authorities and key stakeholders helped project implementation with mutual consensus. It is assumed that environmental risk from development of the extractive industry on land and open access to grazing lands, use of water and effecting water sources is possible. But government of Mongolia is going to introduce result-based M&E in all sector and this will help to address assumed risks.


Tag: Government Cost-sharing Local Governance Programme/Project Design Risk Management Country Government

4.

Lessons from other Relevant Projects incorporated into Project Design

This project was designed with the lessons from the World Bank supported “Sustainable Livelihoods Program”, the GIZ “Mongolia Livestock Adaptation Project/Project for Market and Pasture Management Development” recently approved by GEF. The Livestock Adaptation Project, Green Gold Project, and SLPII contributed to implement activities such as the creation of herder groups, enhancement of fodder production, formulation of pastureland management plans, and opportunities for market improvements. Though this project up-scaled lessons from and coordinate very closely with these other initiatives, this project is the only one that is designed to explicitly focus on maintaining the resilience of ecosystem functions as an adaptation measure. Within the Eastern Steppe region, three international conservation NGO’s (WWF, TNC, and WCS) are implementing a series of programs designed to address climate change and its impacts upon biodiversity values and water provisioning services. The project design consulted these organizations to make certain the proposed project will be complimentary. These programs have generated substantial data about the region as well as formulated and implemented innovative adaptation techniques that lend themselves to EbA approaches. During the inception and implementation phase, the project worked closely with and benefit from these on-going efforts particularly with the design of EbA strategies, plans and demonstrations. Cooperation continued during implementation of activities of this project.


Tag: Climate Change Adaptation Resilience building Ecosystem based adaption Programme Synergy Programme/Project Design Coordination

5.

Planned Stakeholder Participation

At the project development phase, the project development team undertook extensive consultations with a wide range of stakeholders from national government bodies, non-government institutions, INGOs and local government bodies through a series of opinion polls, presentations, interviews, group discussions and workshops. These wide-ranging consultations were undertaken to ensure that stakeholders at all levels are aware of the project and its objectives and that they assist in the identification of threats of land and water degradation and potential institutions that could contribute to various activities of the project. A thorough assessment of relevance, experience and capacity of implementing partners and other stakeholders was also conducted. This assessment helped to utilise the strength of the implementing partners and to also develop capacity enhancement programs. Project design, criteria for potential sites and site selection was carried out with stakeholder participation. The communities from the project sites were also involved in the stakeholder consultations. The project planned to be implemented following the UNDP National Execution (NEX) modality by Ministry of Nature, Environment and Tourism in close coordination with the other relevant Ministries and UNDP. Latter implementation modality was changed to NIM modality during 2014-15.


Tag: Local Governance Implementation Modality Programme/Project Design Country Government Coordination Institutional Strengthening Civil Societies and NGOs National Institutions

6.

Replication Approach

Output activity had included an EbA monitoring, assessment and business planning. The business plan has detail protocols, responsibilities, and long-term financing needs and sources for the sustainable operation of the established monitoring and assessment program. The business plan considered linking the release of national government funding to the completion of Soum level monitoring and assessment. The plan detailed requirements for upscaling and replication to support Component 3. There is high demand of the EbA technique from other parts of the country. Project had collaborated with a press agency to publish its documents for awareness raising on climate change risks on a webpage to disseminate the lessons for further replication.

Mongolia approved a long-term development vision for the country (sustainable development concept of Mongolia till 2030) in February 2016. Its declared objectives are to increase economic growth, eradicate poverty, and reduce inequality; improve the business environment; and build a governance system that is professional, stable, participatory and free of corruption. This vision is anchored in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. UNDP also approved its country program (2016-2021) in 2016, which is centred on supporting implementation of the sustainable development goals and the realization of sustainable human development in Mongolia by translating the 2030 Agenda and the national development vision into Action. EbA project tested economic development, environment protection and securing environment services through active community participation. This approach is in line with the Agenda 2030 and also UNDP country program and could contribute to the vison. Since upscaling of lessons from EbA project will help to achieve Agenda 2030’s objectives like poverty eradication, increase economic growth, environment sustainability through participatory approach there is possibility of replication of the lessons from this project in broader scale in Mongolia.


Tag: Environment Policy Business Model Communication Monitoring and Evaluation Sustainability Inclusive economic growth Poverty Reduction

7.

The implementing and executing institutions were involved in the project from the project design phase and the design involved a thorough analysis of capacities of various partners and their interests. Project design incorporated lessons learned from several relevant projects in Mongolia and other countries. The roles and responsibilities of the implementing partners and other institutions were clearly defined in the project design. Hence to address the identified problem, the project was designed to apply the following approaches:

  • Institutionalize Policy framework and guidelines to address water and land management risk;
  • Develop and systematically apply guidelines and criteria for water and land degradation to enable priority allocation of risk reduction efforts and investments;
  • Engage with global, regional and national research networks and centres working on water and land issues;
  • Develop EbA related knowledge management for supporting evidence based planning.
  • Establish and strengthen institution for river basin management.
  • Strengthen community capacity to monitor natural resources and climate change impacts and adaptive management of watershed.
  • Develop land use and pasture management plan.
  • Mainstream river basin management in national resource use planning and implementation mechanism in sector policies.
  • Strengthen rural economy by diversifying, value addition and addition of alternative income sources for developing climate change resilient livelihood. Document technical knowledge and project lessons for use in future initiatives; and
  • Disseminate project experiences to policy makers and development planners in Mongolia

Tag: Climate Change Adaptation Resilience building Natural Resouce management River basin management Water resources Communication Implementation Modality Programme/Project Design Jobs and Livelihoods Institutional Strengthening

8.

UNDP Comparative Advantage

During the inception workshop, UNDP’s project assurance role was presented and discussed in detail. The participants endorsed the assurance role described in the approved project document. Enhancement of capacities at the national and sub-national levels has been considered by UNDP to be essential for promoting sustainable water and land management. Accordingly, and in line with the government’s national priorities, support to enhance capacities and make planning evidence based in the fields of River basin management was also a priority area. The sustainable land and water management is deemed to be congruent with these priorities as elaborated in the Millennium Development Goal 7 where ensuring environment sustainability is the first priority programme areas for Mongolia; second, UNDAF priority for improved living conditions through environmental management for Sustainable Development and the third UNDP Country Program Action Plan (2012-2016). The project is in line with the pillars of technical and financial assistance which form the foundation from which risks of land and water degradation can be reduced in the Mongolia. Specifically, the project will help realise four pillars identified by UNDP:

• Development of the capacity of the rural population to adapt best adaptation practices on land and watershed management;

• Knowledge management to encourage evidence based planning;

• Engagement of communities and local government and NGOs to reduce risk of land and water degradation; and

• Networking with national and regional organisations working in the field of Ecosystem based Adaptation


Tag: Ecosystem based adaption Environment Policy Natural Resouce management River basin management Water resources Regional Rural Knowledge management Capacity Building Civil Societies and NGOs

9.

UNDP has been working in the field of environment protection, disaster risk reduction, SLM, biodiversity conservation, sustainable use of natural resources for economic development and poverty alleviation and adaptation/mitigation. UNDP has a lot experience from these areas. The project has benefited from UNDP’s experience during the project development phase through to implementation. This project aimed to encourage national and local authorities and communities in Ecosystem based adaptation by enhancing their capacities for addressing climate change and land and water degradation. In addition, the project also aimed to establish knowledge base and provide economic development opportunity for rural communities. The project also benefited from UNDP in mobilizing additional funds, building capacity at the local level from its past experiences and supporting a policy review.


Tag: Disaster Risk Reduction Biodiversity Environment Policy Green Economy Natural Resouce management Resource mobilization UNDP Management UNDP management Poverty Alleviation Capacity Building

10.

Linkages between Project and other Interventions within the Sector

The project has collaborated on the following interventions with other projects that share similar objectives and activities to create synergy for overall benefit to the country: With WWF the project collaborated to organize trainings and awareness raising activities among officers of River Basin Administration on defining the river bed zone as it is requires professional expertise. Provincial and soum level governments were highly appreciated to have the support.

With SPAN (Strengthening Protected Area) of UNDP project collaborated through sharing experiences and information on protected area proposal development and preparing application to the Ministry. SPAN project also supported identifying geographical area when EbA worked on interventions like relocation of marmots. As it was successfully re-introduced communities now took initiative to protect and manage this particular species.

The project had worked with Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Light Industry to support small farmers to obtain tractors under soft loan agreement. Also seed for community greenhouse such as strawberry was identified and distributed to the local pilot areas was collaborated with the same ministry using their expertise and outreach services.

With TNC and WWF, the project collaborated on conducting the assessment of wetlands. The assessment aimed to amend to the “long named law” which is law on Prohibiting Mineral Exploration and Extraction near Water resources, Protected Area and Forests.

More particularly, with TNC the project collaborated to conduct the assessment of identifying the areas that need to be protected under internationally significant biodiversity (KBA). With the scope of work TNC worked in close collaboration with Mongolian National land Agency and UNDP. As a result of it over 1,1 million hectares of area in the Kharkhiraa and Turgen subriver basins was registered into the Land data base as a locally protected area, where no more exploration licenses will be given.


Tag: Biodiversity Environmental impact assessment River basin management Wildlife Conservation Harmonization Partnership Programme Synergy Donor Awareness raising Operational Services Data and Statistics Civil Societies and NGOs

11.

Best practices and experiences of EbA project is already being shared and taken into account by different newly proposed projects. For instance, UNDP/GEF, ENSURE (Ensuring Sustainability and Resilience of Green landscapes in Mongolia) project at its PPG stage is highly considering to use some of the approaches and activities used by EbA. For instance, the local communities got strong awareness raising through on-site activities about CBNRM and learned by doing that through conserving the local nature using different adaptation technologies can have an economic gain on harvest and yield animals in return.

The other newly emerging projects such as BIOFIN and ‘Improving the Adaptive Capacity and Risk Management of Rural Communities in Mongolia’ project of UNDP are learning from EbA project for their successful implementation.

For the use of alternative energy source in rural areas the solar water collector was installed at local hospital of Bukhmurun soum, Uvs aimag that is abled providing warm water for shower and washing rooms. In this case women are benefited more since most of hospital workers are women and most of users of shower room are baby expecting mothers.


Tag: Ecosystem based adaption Energy Site Conservation / Preservation Women's Empowerment Harmonization Programme Synergy UNDP Management UNDP management Awareness raising Civil Societies and NGOs

12.

Management Arrangements 

UNDP National Execution Modality (NEX) was applied in the beginning but due to political transition during 2014-15 again it is switched to National Implementation Modality (NIM) to ensure broad stakeholder participation and to create both high flexibility and an enabling environment for innovation. The Ministry of Environment and Tourism (MET) was responsible for implementing UNDPCCC and water resource management and had the responsibility of senior supplier. MET was responsible for the timely delivery of inputs and outputs and coordinate with other responsible partners including line ministries, NGOs and local government authorities. The MET had also appointed the National Project Director. The ministry’s name was also change twice. In the beginning it was Ministry of Nature, Environment and Tourism (MNET), then it was changed to Ministry of Environment and Green Development (MEG) and then it was changed again to Ministry of Environment and Tourism (MET).

Project had a Project Board (PB) with responsibility of making management decisions for the project and play a critical role in project monitoring and evaluations to assure quality of process and products and use finding from the M&E for performance improvement, maintain accountability and upscale learnings. The PB was composed of designated senior-level representatives of MET, Ministry of Food and Agriculture, UNDP and local Governor’s Offices.

The project had a Project Management Unit headed by the Programme Manager who was responsible for the preparation of work plans and budgets and for supervising implementation of activities to deliver project results. The procurement of major inputs was directly done by UNDP on behalf of the project. Project had a National Project Manager with responsibility of ensuring the effective implementation for producing results specified in the project document without compromising quality within the specified time and budget.


Tag: Tourism Water resources Local Governance Implementation Modality Innovation Project and Programme management Country Government UNDP Management UNDP management Civil Societies and NGOs

13.

Regular meetings were conducted to discuss progress and the constraints faced by the project. UNDP maintained quality technical and financial implementation of the project through its local office in Mongolia. UNDP CO also assured activity implementation, monitoring and ensured proper use of AF funds to assigned activities, timely reporting of implementation progress as well as undertaking of mandatory and non-mandatory evaluations. All services for the procurement of goods and services, and the recruitment of personnel were conducted in accordance with UNDP procedures, rules and regulations.

Project established technical committee which provided continuous technical feedback filling the technical gaps. Excellent reputation of NPC and PIU among all stakeholders was blessing to the project. Appreciation from the local government and presence of local coordinators was helpful in facilitating inter-sectoral collaboration and capacity enhancement on climate change adaptation.

The Project’s management and implementation focused on the revised log-frame throughout. The project team made an effort to raise awareness and develop capacity amongst stakeholders to provide a solid baseline of understanding the project’s main goals and activities. The roles and responsibilities of executing and implementing parties were made clear and negotiated prior to signing the project document. A thorough review of relevant legislations was carried out to assure an enabling environment for the project implementation. Similarly, agreement on co-funding was made before signing the project document and staff, equipment and logistics arrangements were in place by the time of initiation of the project.


Tag: Climate Change Adaptation Government Cost-sharing Local Governance Implementation Modality Monitoring and Evaluation Procurement Project and Programme management Results-Based Management UNDP Management UNDP management Awareness raising Capacity Building

14.

Project Implementation

Two project sites Altai Mountains and Great lakes basin, Turgen and Khahiraa river basins and Ulz river basin in Eastern Steppe were selected by the project to implement policies, plans and investments that prevent soil degradation, maintain ecological integrity and support economic development of local communities.


Tag: Ecosystem based adaption Natural Resouce management River basin management Site Conservation / Preservation Implementation Modality Inclusive economic growth Operational Services Policy Advisory

15.

Adaptive Management

The Project’s adaptive management was good. The project was driven by the capable management team, backed by good decision-making by the Project Board, support and advice from the UNDP-CO. Adaptive management has operated effectively at both the strategic level and the tactical level. As suggested in the inception report, economic valuation of the ecosystem based adaptation strategies was conducted. Also activities like EbA approaches were introduced in ongoing planning of Soum level land-use and annual pasture management plan. A change in circumstances due to new amendment to the Law on Water led to further revision of Component 3. As the new legislation calls for establishment of Administrations and Councils for the river basins in Mongolia, and revised logframe adjusted to support the establishment and strengthening of these institutions and enhance capacity of staff/member. Some minor adjustments to indicators were made during inception workshop.

The MTE made 22 recommendations (see 3.2.4) and positive responses were made to all of them Recommendation to modify few target indicators was approved by the project board and forwarded to UNDP which sent it to UNDP-AF Regional Coordination Unit.

Most of the project activities including baseline study on biophysical and socio-economic situation were conducted within planned timeframe as this was stressed in Inception workshop. The project was designed to pilot in two areas based on the recommendation of the vulnerability assessments. Adoption of inception report recommendations and the recommendation from MTR by the project management is described under the heading “Feedback from M&E activities used for adaptive management”.

No major change was made in the project design and no new outputs were added but one output of component 2 was dropped and prioritisation of outputs was done according to recommendations from the MTR


Tag: Environmental impact assessment Implementation Modality Monitoring and Evaluation Programme/Project Design Project and Programme management Results-Based Management UNDP Regional Bureaux

16.

Partnership Arrangements

The UNDP CO provides technical and financial support and also fulfils the role of monitoring. The Ministry of Nature, Environment and Tourism is the lead implementing partner. It has the clear technical mandate related to EbA strategies, including knowledge of the international developments and networks related to EbA. Ministries (Food, Agriculture and Light Industry, Mineral Resources and Energy) Local Government (Aimags and Soums in the two target eco-regional landscapes), Administration for Land Affairs, Construction, Geodesy and Cartography, State Specialized Inspection Agency, River Basin Councils, Mongolian Academy of Science and research institutes, Communities, National Meteorology Association, National Media are key partners of the project. Similarly, donors and NGOs like IFAD, World Bank, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, The Nature Conservancy, Wildlife Conservation Society, World Wildlife Fund.

The project focussed efforts on building local capacity for Monitoring Natural Resources and Climate Change Impacts and adaptive management of river basin. The research findings and experience from working with local stakeholders provided the project with information for the formulation and amendment of legislations, development of guidelines for river basin management, EbA strategy document, knowledge management strategy and also increase household economy. Awareness generation, networking between community groups, exchange visits for knowledge sharing, involvement of various organisations specialised on specific technical fields related to the subject and involvement of local government staffs have significantly contributed to creating an enabling environment for the progress of the project. These capacity enhancements, commitment from government agency and policy back up is likely to make the project intervention sustainable in the longterm.

The project reached a wider audience through awareness generation through brochure distribution, media coverage, web-pages of UNDP and Ministry of Environment and tourism. The TECs found that stakeholder engagement and participatory approaches have been of good order throughout.

The project has worked closely with many stakeholders throughout and the active engagement of stakeholders has been vital to fulfilling its achievements, hence stakeholder participation is evaluated as Highly Satisfactory.


Tag: Climate Change Adaptation Environmental impact assessment Natural Resouce management Local Governance Monitoring and Evaluation Multilateral Partners Partnership Project and Programme management Sustainability Country Government UN Agencies Awareness raising Capacity Building Technical Support Civil Societies and NGOs

17.

Gender

Women and children are the ones who are most vulnerable to climate change impacts. Baseline studies accounted gender in baseline studies. Project incorporated activities to address economic need of women particularly the women-headed households were properly addressed through enhancing and diversifying income generation from processing product and from horticultural products. Women were also provided opportunity to bring their voice and thoughts by involved in all committees and improved their skills in business planning. There are still room for further improvement of women’s income level by improving access to more lucrative income generation activities. Similarly, assessing current incomes of women under current conditions and stock-taking exercise of income generation opportunities for women in rural areas would be helpful in developing and future implementation. As already pointed out in MTR that vulnerability of women to low temperature was not adequately addressed by the project.


Tag: Climate Change Adaptation Gender Equality Women's Empowerment Jobs and Livelihoods Vulnerable Women and gilrs

18.

Feedback from M&E Activities used for Adaptive Management

The project’s adaptive management has been good throughout but monitoring technical aspects of the project was weak and feedback on such areas was weak. The MTR made 22 recommendations and positive responses were made to all of them – the management response, justifications and actions were taken as follows:


Tag: Implementation Modality Monitoring and Evaluation Project and Programme management

19.

Project Finance

The total project cost as per project document was US$10,569,124 which includes US$5,569,124 in cash and US$5,000,000 in kind. Of these, the AF contribution was expected to be US$5,069,124 in cash, UNDP contribution US$500,000 in cash, and Government of Mongolia’s (GoM) contribution US$5,000,000 in kind. But as per the balance sheet provided by the UNDP, the total project cost (revised) was US$13,674,108.74 including US$5,569,091.74 in cash and US$8,105,017 in kind (Table 2 and 3). Of these, US$4,792,069.34 was as AF contribution with a UNDP contribution of US$499,999.66 in cash. In-kind contribution from the Government of Mongolia was increased in the project document i.e. US$8,105,017. If project spending is used as a basis of measure of the progress of implementation, then the Project has achieved most of the progress originally envisaged, only approval of one guidelines and two proposal (PA extension) were left and was on the process. Co-financing was well planned and clearly mentioned in the project document. Co-financing ratio and amount was changed latter while revising project finance. There was difference between committed contribution and actual contribution from the AF, UNDP as well as GoM. The UNDP as well as AF contribution was same as committed. Similarly, committed amount from UNDP was US$5000,000 but actual spent amount was and US$499,999.66. The committed amount of Government of Mongolia was US$5,000,000 while the actual contribution was US$8,105,017 i.e. 62.1% more than committed amount. The executing and implementing agencies made close monitoring of financial transactions and program implementation.


Tag: Government Cost-sharing Human and Financial resources Operational Efficiency Country Government UNDP Management UNDP management

20.
  • Project management costs were proposed at US$480,000 and funded by AF, but actual cost covered by AF was 557,232.67 (97%) and UNDP US$22,191.93(3%) while actual amount spent by Govt. of Mongolia in Management is not clear and it is believed that 100% contribution of the GoM was for management. AF contribution to management was increased and UNDP also contributed in management though it was not committed earlier. The actual management cost (US$576,424.6) of the project was more than projected i.e. increased by nearly 20%;
  • Project management costs comprised about 4.1% of the total spend. Original closing date of the project was October 2017 but it is going to be December 2017 as closing of some activities and administrative and financial work need some time. But this is not increasing any cost to the project.
  • The project was co-financed by the UNDP and GoM. The final AF co-finance ratio in terms of monies spent was 1:1.7 (US$5,069,092.08 (AF)) to US$8,681,016.68 (UNDP+GoM), This is a very good result as AF requirement is at least 1:1 ratio;
  • Spending on Component 1, 2 and 3 (US$ 1,000,203.21, US$3,194,769.5 and US$796,694.43) accounted for 7.3%, 23.4% and 5.8% of the total spend respectively, while management costs (US$8,681,441.6 i.e. 63.5%) was much higher than component 1,2 and 3. Government contribution was mainly management type so calculated in management cost
  • AF funding was distributed among all four components while UNDP funding was mainly allocated to component 1, 2 and 3 (Table 2) earlier but latter some contribution made for component 4 also. GoM support was through in-kind contribution and for implementation of activities (management). Of the total AF fund, 13.6% was spent on component 1, 61% on component 2, 15% on component 3 and 11% on component 4. UNDP funds were allocated mainly for component 1, 2 and 3 and small amount for 4 and of these comparatively less was spent on project management.

Tag: Government Cost-sharing Human and Financial resources Operational Efficiency Project and Programme management Country Government UNDP Management UNDP management

21.

Analysis of budgeted and actual expenditure shows difference in all components. Similarly, it is also observed that in some components (component 1 and 2, Table 3) less expenses made than budgeted but in some it exceeded. In the initial two years, due to slow implementation expenses was less than budgeted but in the following years covered some of the activities of the previous years and in some cases though activities started in the initial years payment was made in the latter years so latter years showed exceeded expenses than budgeted amount. The planned management cost as per project document was US$480,000 and as per revised budgeted amount was US$529,104.37while actual management cost was US$8,681,441.6. The cost increase a lot compared to budgeted in project document or revised budget.

Tables 3-5 show the disbursement of AF and UNDP funds. Breakdown of the GoM was not available but it was learned that GoM contributed in kind i.e. technical manpower for management of project implementation. GoM’s in-kind contribution covers cost of office rooms in field offices and in center, cost of electricity, telecommunication, government staffs’ salary, and costs of the time contribution by NPD and chair of the project board and district board members. UNDP’s in-kind contribution covers costs of vehicles, fuel and maintenance of vehicles, PMU staff salary, office equipment, office running expenses including stationary, internets, board meetings and monitoring costs.

Personnel from all ministries involved in this project, local government and research institute, NGOs, UNDP CO, community based organisations and community members were found satisfied with some reservations and they were advocating achievement of the project. Ministry officials, local government authorities, UNDP CO and local communities also expressed commitment to continue support to the project activities. Similarly, they also noted that the ministry as well as UNDP already has some projects which will complement some of the activities under this project and also replicate lessons learned. UNDP and government is also working on new project proposals to replicate lessons from these piloting.


Tag: Government Cost-sharing Local Governance Human and Financial resources Operational Efficiency Country Government Operational Services Technical Support Civil Societies and NGOs

22.

Table 3 shows the actual funds spent for each component by year for the AF funds. These show clearly that the management cost from AF i.e. component 4 exceeded budgeted amount in the years 2013 to 2016. UNDP didn’t had provisioned management cost but except the year 2016, it contributed some in management. Component 1 funded by AF, peaked disbursement in 2014 and Component 2 in 2015. Component 3 funding by AF peaked disbursement in 2014 and component 4 peaked in the year 2014. UNDP funding for component 1, 2 and 3 were not made in years from 2014 to 2017 but only in year 2012 and 2013. Component 1, 2 and 3 funding by UNDP peaked disbursement in 2013, component 3 fund was not spend in 2012. No detail breakdown figures for GoM contributions for each components were available and assumed it is only for management i.e. component 4 and started from 2014. These expenses correspond to the work accomplishment in respective years. Financial planning was not able to provide a real figure for each of the activities for different years. At all times, the chair of the Project Board has been kept abreast on the project’s progress though good reporting and this has allowed the necessary budget revisions to be made on a sound basis. Similarly, the link between Ministry of Environment and Tourism and the UNDP-CO has been efficient in ensuring that budget replenishments have been timely.


Tag: Human and Financial resources Operational Efficiency Oversight Country Government UNDP Management UNDP management

23.

Monitoring and Evaluation: Design at Entry and Implementation

M&E Design

The project design included good monitoring and evaluation (M&E) plan which is comprehensive in its depth and scope. The project had a log-frame to monitor achievement and the log-frame had clear objectives, components and appropriate to the issues and also designed considering the timeframe of the project. Output targets were realistic to the budget and timeframe. A detailed survey was conducted following the standard scientific methods to identify the most vulnerable sites which helped to judge impact of interventions. Roles and responsibilities of the partners were made clear from the project design phase. The indicators of the log-frame were all Specific; Measurable; Attributable; Relevant, Achievable Realistic and Time-bound. At the stage of the inception, clarifications and updates were made to the M & E plan but no major change was made. MTR also did not make any changes to the outputs. All activities were listed and explained, and a table was included determining responsibilities, budgets and timeframe for each. M&E budgets were not set realistically, with a total proposed amount of US$90,000 (Ninety Thousand) being set aside specifically for M&E activities. Baselines were already set in the Project Document. The inclusions of indicators for each activity were appropriate and useful for evaluation and also good for management purposes.

The design of M&E included fully itemised and costed plan in the Project Document covering all the various M&E steps including the allocation of responsibilities; but provision for monitoring of technical aspects and feedback mechanisms need improvement. Similarly targets were appropriate and realistic for the time frame, hence monitoring and evaluation design has been evaluated as Highly Satisfactory.

 


Tag: Human and Financial resources Monitoring and Evaluation Programme/Project Design Results-Based Management

24.

M&E Implementation

Monitoring and evaluation of project activities has been undertaken in varying detail at three levels:

  • Progress monitoring
  • Internal activity monitoring
  • Impact monitoring

Progress monitoring has been good and was being done through quarterly and annual reporting to the UNDPCO. The annual work plans have been developed at the end of each year with inputs from Project staff and the UNDP-CO. The annual work plans have been developed at the end of each year with inputs from project staff and the UNDP-CO. The annual work plans were then submitted for endorsement by the Project Board, and subsequently sent to UNDP for formal approval. The implementing team has also been largely in regular communication with the UNDP-CO regarding progress, the work plan, and its implementation. The indicators from the logframe were effective in measuring progress and performance. Project management has also ensured that the UNDP-CO received quarterly progress reports providing updates on the status of planned activities, the status of the overall project schedule, deliverables completed, and an outline of the activities planned for the following quarter. The reports’ format contained quantitative estimates of project progress based on financial disbursements. The UNDP-CO generated its own quarterly financial reports from Atlas. These expenditure records, together with Atlas disbursement records of any direct payments, served as a basis for expenditure monitoring and budget revisions, the latter taking place bi-annually following the disbursement progress and changes in the operational work plan, and also on an ad hoc basis depending upon the rate of delivery.


Tag: Implementation Modality Monitoring and Evaluation Oversight Project and Programme management Results-Based Management Risk Management UNDP Management UNDP management Technology Coordination Data and Statistics

25.

Internal activity monitoring undertaken by UNDP CO, Ministry of Nature, Environment and Tourism and the Project Manager appears to have been good comprising a range of mechanisms to keep informed of the situation and to respond quickly and effectively to any areas of concern. These comprised many of the methods used to track progress, and implementation has been guided by the Annual Work Plan and the quarterly plans submitted to release funds. Generally the project was not in need of formalised communication or monitoring procedures as members being in almost daily contact. Unusually, impact monitoring has been well-developed, with formal protocols in place to measure the change in level of functioning of improved population of wildlife and coverage of forest, level of water and condition of pasture, increased in production and income from income generation activities, and change in awareness among community members. Undoubtedly this has arisen from the scientific background of the project design team, enhanced by the same of its technical staff and managers. As is most often the case, adaptive management of the project has been influenced to a much greater extent by external variables and overcoming the problems (or taking opportunities) that these have presented than by responding to internal monitoring.

M&E implementation has been satisfactory, with progress monitoring and internal activity monitoring. Responses have also been made to the mid-term review and the risk assessments (though some room for improvement in technical aspects of the activities remains) and the TECs considers it to be “best practice”, hence the implementation of monitoring and evaluation has been evaluated as Highly Satisfactory


Tag: Environmental impact assessment Natural Resouce management Water resources Wildlife Conservation Implementation Modality Monitoring and Evaluation Policies & Procedures Project and Programme management Country Government UNDP Management UNDP management Poverty Alleviation

26.

UNDP and Implementing Partners Implementation / Execution, Coordination and Operational Issues

Project Oversight

The project was implemented following National Implementation Modality (NIM) to ensure broad stakeholder participation and to create both flexibility and an enabling environment for innovation. The project execution was coordinated by the Ministry of Nature, Environment and Tourism in close coordination with UNDP. There was very good communication and coordination between implementing and executing agencies. Regular meetings were conducted to discuss progress and constraints of the project. UNDP had ensured high-quality technical and financial implementation of the project through its local office in Mongolia. UNDP CO was responsible for monitoring and ensuring proper use of AF funds, timely reporting of implementation progress as well as undertaking of mandatory and non-mandatory evaluations. All services for the procurement of goods and services, and the recruitment of personnel were conducted in accordance with UNDP procedures, rules and regulations. The project Management Unit was formed to coordinate and manage project activities and it facilitated the achievement of targeted results on time, adequate and appropriate management practices, program planning and proper implementation and timely reporting. PIU had one National Project Director, National Project Manager, Technical Advisor and support staffs (admin/finance staff, driver and office helper). A risk management strategy was developed involving all partners and experts through detailed analysis of issues and was effectively implemented. Local government provided office spaces in the field and also nominated Project Board members representing the local governments involved in the project. The project hired qualified experts to conduct studies and conduct demonstrations at sites levels.

 


Tag: Local Governance Communication Human and Financial resources Implementation Modality Oversight Project and Programme management Risk Management Country Government UNDP Management UNDP management Coordination

27.

The capacity of the communities and Institution established to manage river basin was enhanced for strengthening performance. Since MNET (now MET), other ministries and local governments institutions’ involvement was on behalf of Government of Mongolian government ownership in the project was assured.

The technical management of the project was of the highest standards. The project has deployed expertise of the highest calibre, whether international or national, and 9 outputs/deliverables which have been developed have also been excellent, whether these were specialist material, e.g. various study reports, EbA strategy, knowledge management strategy, development of land-use and pasture management plan, river basin management plan, database, brochures or legal documents, Policy Recommendations and EbA Guidelines.

The Project has been planned and managed (except in some cases which were delayed and remained incomplete) providing products of good quality and within budget, while responding effectively to several internal and external challenges through good adaptive management, hence the implementation approach has been evaluated as Satisfactor.


Tag: Natural Resouce management River basin management Implementation Modality Ownership Project and Programme management Country Government Institutional Strengthening

28.

UNDP Supervision and Backstopping

UNDP supervision was accomplished through standard procedures and undertaken competently. Terminal Evaluator received no complaints from interviewees about excessive UNDP bureaucracy or delays in procurement, and UNDP’s heavy requirements for reporting.

Key aspects of supervision were made through UNDP’s involvement in communication with the Ministry of Finance, Economic Development and Planning and other stakeholders. Members of the Energy and Environment Cluster of UNDP CO were heavily involved in regular issues such as the review and approval of work plans and budgets, review of progress and performance against such work plans, and completion of the tracking tools. It appears that the CO was helpful and supportive throughout the implementation period, responding adequately to provide good guidance, honest and constructive criticism, and help to overcome particular problems as necessary. UNDP support was focused towards achieving targeted results and support was appropriate, adequate and timely and the project staffs were satisfied by the quality of UNDP support. Annual planning was done on time with active participation of stakeholders. Similarly, risk management options were identified in close consultation of partners and experts and the project was able to manage risk efficiently. To avoid long bureaucratic process that delayed payment disbursements, and therefore delayed activity implementation, alternative ways to pay directly were made. The project was slow in the beginning but by changing the Project Manager improved implementation. Despite the slow start in the initial year, project accomplished all its targeted activities without compromising quality.

UNDP has provided an adequate level of supervision and backstopping to the project, and its performance has benefitted as a direct result, hence UNDP’s supervision and backstopping role is evaluated as Highly Satisfactory.


Tag: Communication Implementation Modality Oversight Policies & Procedures Risk Management Country Government UNDP Management UNDP management

29.

Project Results 

Overall Results

Attainment of Objectives:

The project continued to reducing land and water degradation risk by addressing policy gaps, enhancing capacity of the local government and community based institutions, generating awareness among community members from the project sites and supporting evidence based planning and mainstreaming river basin management in national resource use planning in sector policies. The following EbA related outputs were delivered:

  • Developed 22policies and plans including 3 IWRMPs and 2 EbA strategies.
  • Mainstreamed IWRM plan in all key sectors and intitutions (both public and private) involving water users at all levels.
  • Facilitation of community-level adaptation planning.
  • Facilitation of community participation in construction of physical structures like water reservoir, protection springs, construction of dams, well, canals, greenhouses, meteorological stations etc. Such direct involvement helped communities to have first-hand experience and therefore better understand what is required to address land and water degradation.
  • Influenced National Climate Change Adaptation Programs for Agriculture, water and forest sectors.
  • Contributed in establishment of River Basin Administration (RBA).
  • Conducted studies on various subjects related to water basin management, sustainable utilisation of natural resources, capacity assessment (to develop capacity enhancement strategy), status and distribution of glacial, economy of EbA etc.
  • Developed guidelines for management of water resources.
  • Capacity of 9soum units of the project were strengthened in the field of climate change, EbA, environmental monitoring and evaluation.
  • Capacity and knowledge of 8 different fields of the local staffs was strengthened.
  • Established various community groups on subjects like water user groups, sustainable agriculture groups, herders groups etc.
  • Promoted inter-sectoral collaboration and also strengthened River Basin Councils (RBC).

Tag: Natural Resouce management River basin management Site Conservation / Preservation Water resources Local Governance Awareness raising Capacity Building Institutional Strengthening Policy Advisory Civil Societies and NGOs National Institutions

30.

Summary of Achievements

Project results were measured against achievement indicators guided by evaluation questions (tracking tools, Annex XI). The EbA Project has been well designed, managed and implemented. The project team has managed to deliver a series of interventions that have reduced the threats of pasture land degradation and water scarcity and contributed to the improved livelihoods of local communities from the project provinces of Mongolia. In the process, the project has demonstrated some innovative approaches particularly in improved agricultural practices, water harvesting, weather monitoring, bio-briquette production for energy and income generating activities that could be expanded within the region or be replicated elsewhere in the country. One of its biggest strengths has come about through a design-decision to work directly with the community groups through the local government institutions rather than parallel project structures. Since the project is implemented by Ministry of Environment and Tourism (MET) involving ministry of Finance, Agriculture and Provincial and Soam governments, all government agencies are taking full ownership for most of the project’s outputs/outcomes. Some very good work in the pilot sites brought benefits to many community members thereby laying a foundation for improved understanding of, and cooperation on, river basin management. As will be seen below, the achievement of the outputs and activities under each of the three Outcomes has been evaluated as Highly Satisfactory, and the evaluation of achievements against indicators (provided in Annex IV) show that all of the activities have been accomplished. The project helped to address threats to local communities from land and water degradation, and climate change through awareness-raising, strengthening capacity of relevant communities groups and institutions, promoted the use of weather information, water harvesting technologies, improved sustainable cultivation practices and supporting evidence based development planning.

Overall, the project has achieved many of its major global and local environmental objectives, and yielded substantial global environmental benefits, with minor shortcomings. The project can be presented as “good practice”, and hence its attainment of objectives and results is evaluated as Highly Satisfactory.


Tag: Agriculture Resilience building Drinking water supply Energy Site Conservation / Preservation Water resources Innovation Ownership Jobs and Livelihoods Civil Societies and NGOs

31.

Key project achievements include:

The major outcomes of the project is generation of awareness or change in thinking (transformation) from local to the national level regarding issues climate change and seriousness of the impact and various solutions to address them, mainstreamed EbA in development planning through developing provincial level Green Development plans, created a knowledge base and facilitated access to it for promoting evidence based planning and development of policy framework to support EbA. Other Outputs are as follows:

A. Institutional and Financial Arrangements for Community Based DISERTIFICATION RISK REDUCTION (DRR):

1. Community groups established in both project provinces.

2. Enhanced knowledge and capacity of the local governments.

3. Enhanced knowledge and capacity of community groups.

4. Established separate women’s groups in villages of both provinces.

5. Provided financial support to groups to initiate various enterprises that increase household income and strengthen resilience to climate change impacts.

 

 


Tag: Climate Change Adaptation Disaster Risk Reduction Resilience building Natural Resouce management Women's Empowerment Local Governance Awareness raising Capacity Building Civil Societies and NGOs National Institutions

32.

B. Adaptation Structures in selected areas for Sustainable Natural Resource Management:

1. Water reservoirs constructed.

2. Rooftop rain water harvest and reservoir for rainwater harvest.

3. Bio-briquette production supported.

4. Solar technology for fruits drying introduced.

5. Green houses constructed for sustainable agriculture practices.

6. Dry well and engineered Wells constructed for extended drought situation. 5 of them were equipped with solar pump.

7. Irrigation canals constructed.

8. Snow and rain water harvesting structures constructed.

9. Meteorological stations established, equipped and staffs trained.

10. Permanent glacier monitoring station established and equipped.

11. Existing meteorological stations upgraded.


Tag: Agriculture water resources Drinking water supply Energy Natural Resouce management Water resources

33.

C. Non-structural interventions: (awareness raising, exposures, trainings, linkages development etc):

1. Conducted various trainings for awareness raising.

2. Conducted training programs to train locals on skills on various enterprises.

3. Various training for bio-briquettes production.

4. Awareness programs on climate change impact for decision makers and local communities.

5. Exposure visits to various sites to provide first-hand information to community members on various efficient water management and agriculture practises.

6. Conducted studies on various subjects related to Climate change, agriculture, economic aspects of adaptation programs, water harvest, glacier, protected areas, surface and ground water status etc.

7. Developed Green Climate Development plan for Provinces.

8. Several linkages development meetings were conducted with NGOs and line organisations followed by exposure visits to target project sites.

9. Conducted biophysical and socio-economic baseline studies at the project sites.

10. Conducted several capacity building activities (training on financial management, provided knowledge on water management, sustainable agriculture, marketing and also provided equipment) for women and men.

11. Supported eco-clubs of the local schools with awareness materials and also practical activities to generate awareness.


Tag: Agriculture Climate Change Adaptation Green Climate Awareness raising Capacity Building Data and Statistics Civil Societies and NGOs

34.

INTERVENTION AT THE LOCAL AND NATIONAL LEVEL

A. Activities with local, and National Stakeholders:

1. Conducted several coordination/consultation meetings.

2. At the beginning of the project to improve project component for implementation an inception workshop was conducted which refined indicators, approaches and also outlined specific activities.

3. Organised capacity needs assessment studies.

4. Strengthened Provincial and Soum level Local Government Environment Cells in project district offices.

5. Strengthened community groups.

6. Organised exposure visits (in country) for representatives of community groups and government representatives.

7. Prepared Provincial level and Soum level Green Development Plan for both project provences.

8. Project manager participated in 23rd COP in Poland and also in Workshop on developing guidelines on flood prevention based on natural approaches in Netherlands and shared lessons from EbA project.

 


Tag: Local Governance Capacity Building Coordination Institutional Strengthening National Institutions

35.

B. Intervention at the Policy Level:

1. Reviewed land conservation, land and water use and agrculture policies and recommendation developed.

C. Awareness, Communication and Documentation:

1. Awareness programs on local FM Radio and TV and in webpages.

2. Used print/electronic media for conducting campaign through news clips, articles etc.

3. Uploaded program information on websites of UNDP, MET and other agencies involved in the project.

4. Lessons learned is being developed for distribution.

5. Produced project brochure and other publications and disseminated to various audiences/stakeholders


Tag: Agriculture Natural Resouce management Site Conservation / Preservation Water resources Communication Awareness raising Policy Advisory

36.

The main problem areas identified by the TECs are:

• Ministries and Local Governments of both provinces expressed their support to project activities but funds were not committed to replicate lessons from this project to other areas;

• At the time of conducting the TE, no guaranteed commitment from any non-governmental/development partners was available to replicate lessons from this project to other vulnerable areas of Mongolia. But three proposals were being developed to upscale lessons from this project.

Objective Indicators

A single “Project Objective” was articulated in the log frame with a development objective. The overall project objective is to maintain the water provisioning services supplied by mountain and steppe ecosystems by internalizing climate change risks within land and water resource management regimes. The project aims to achieve its stated objective through three Components. Furthermore, during the log-frame’s revision, a series of 10 indicators were defined for 9 outputs. Full details and an evaluation of achievements against targets are provided in Annex IV. Project was able to accomplish most of the targeted activities (leaving few incomplete). The TECs believes this to be a creditworthy performance.


Tag: Climate Change Adaptation Water resources Challenges Sustainability Resource mobilization Local Governance Results-Based Management Country Government

37.

Relevance

EbA project is relevant with the Mongolia’s national policies and programmes. It contributes to manage and protect of pastureland, water and forest resources, rain and snow water harvesting and basin-based integrated water resources management. With the ecosystem based integrated approach contribute to sectoral programs and policies covering climate change adaptation, water management, forest management, biodiversity conservation, and combating desertification. The importance of these two landscapes are also stated in programme documents such as NAPCC, NAPCD and National Programme on water.

The 2010 State Policy on herders specially requires that Government to improve national preparedness to natural disasters and climate-related emergencies. MDD Goal 7 of Mongolia state to ensure environmental sustainability. The 2005 MDG-based National Development Strategy Section 3.5calls for the creation of “a sustainable environment for development by promoting capacities and measures on adaptation to climate change, halting imbalances in the country’s ecosystems and protection them”. Strategic Objective 6 states: “promote capacity to adapt to climate change and desertification to reduce their negative impacts”. Mongolia also ratified the Kyoto protocol in 1993 and to fulfil its commitment government of Mongolia has initiated some activities. The National Action Programme for Climate Change was also updated whose objective 2 ask to ensure ecological balance and reduce socio economic vulnerabilities and risks step by step through strengthening of national adaptive capacity to climate change. EbA programs are in line to these commitments and also support achievement of the 2010 National Programme on Water Section 3.2.10 which states “Determine impacts of climate change and land use to the water ecosystem in large river basins, ecosystem biological indicators and monitor according to the international standards”. Project is also in line with the 2010 NAP for combating desertification, the Alai Mountains Biodiversity Conservation Strategy and the Eastern Steppe Biodiversity Conservation Strategy, the Government Plan of Action, the National Adaptation Strategy and the National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan.

The project intervenes to reduce land degradation, contribute to human lives and property and safeguard critical river basin of Mongolia and is congruent with GEF and national priorities, and remains pertinent in light of the current levels of threats; hence it is evaluated as Relevant.


Tag: Climate Change Adaptation Biodiversity Drinking water supply Environment Policy Natural Resouce management River basin management Site Conservation / Preservation Water resources Relevance Global Environment Facility fund MDGs Capacity Building

38.

Effectiveness and Efficiency

Cost-effectiveness

The UNDP Guidance for Conducting Terminal Evaluations of UNDP-supported projects defines the criteria of “efficiency” as:

“The extent to which results have been delivered with the least costly resources possible; also called cost effectiveness or efficacy.”

The project has not exceeded the budgeted figures and all of the planned deliverables were completed by the time of terminal evaluation so the cost-effectiveness is satisfactory. Activities of all three components were accomplished without exceeding the budgeted amount and achievement indicates no lack of quality. Publication of few good practices, approval of Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM) plan and proposal of two protected areas are due but project personnel have done their job efficiently and completed all preparation and submission of guidelines and proposals and lobbing for approval is done well and as a result it is in the priority list of the coming parliament session. Overall management cost is more than initially budgeted and this could be due to shortcoming in calculation of some management costs. Total expenses of the project were 100% of the total budgeted amount and some additional expenses (US$3,104,984.74) also took place mainly in management but this is due to additional management expenses which is born by the GoM and beard by the GoM. Hence project is highly cost effective


Tag: Effectiveness Efficiency Government Cost-sharing Human and Financial resources Operational Efficiency Project and Programme management Country Government

39.

Project generated support from the government which helped to reduce cost of project office space in the field and the project also used national consultants to provide technical advice, helping to reduce the cost of project management that otherwise could be very high. Involvement of local communities in implementing project activities helped to increase their knowledge and skills. Income from project activities and water harvesting improved the livelihood of communities comfortable. Construction of rooftop and reservoir water harvest and replacement of coal and wood use by bio-briquette reduced drudgery of women and herders that helped to generate interest of government and other like-minded institutions to be involved in such activities.

The project was able to achieve several of expected outputs, and cost-effectiveness has been a priority of the implementing agency throughout, amongst their priorities. This, combined with significant levels of additional co-financing leveraged by the project’s activities, means the overall cost-effectiveness of the project has been Highly Satisfactory, hence it is evaluated as Highly Satisfactory.

 


Tag: Energy Water resources Effectiveness Government Cost-sharing Local Governance Human and Financial resources Operational Efficiency Jobs and Livelihoods

40.

The project was able to achieve expected outcomes and objectives. Evaluation team evaluated the achievements following the log frame indicators (revised indicators) and judged achievement effectiveness in activities and efforts made by the project team efficiently. The initial delays in implementation were caused by initial preparations. Stakeholders expressed satisfaction with the accomplishments of the project and are of the view that the project will have significant impact and will meet its objectives.

The project has facilitated changes in management practice and development planning processes and has increased the level of awareness about the long term positive impacts of EBA, especially in the context of climate change. Similarly, project delivery modalities have been efficient and project has been able to contribute to the AF and UNDP objectives and also to national priorities. Since some of the interventions of the project showed impact (impact on planning processes, impact in policy amendment and formulation, development of green development plan (GDP) by provincial governments, increase in household income, increased availability of water during drought periods, increased awareness on cause of environmental problems, reduced use of firewood, development and approval of local managed protected areas, increased in population of the translocated Marmet etc.) while others are yet to show impact, the effectiveness of the project is rated as Highly Satisfactory.

The project followed standard scientific methods and used qualified, experienced and dedicated technical manpower which made implementation of activities efficient and helped to achieve many targets on time and with quality outcomes.

The project maintained good relations with all stakeholders and worked in close cooperation and this helped to execute activities efficiently with their cooperation and also made impact effective.


Tag: Climate Change Adaptation Effectiveness Implementation Modality Results-Based Management Policy Advisory

41.

Impacts

TECs found local people very much aware of the climate change impact and also sustainable management of water resources. Also the local and central government officials were very much sensitized on the issues of water basin management and made future plans and programs to address water basin management and green development. Awareness generated among the community members was resulted in them planting trees, protecting springs, proper management of water, practicing sustainable agriculture methods and participation in sustainable and environment friendly activities. This project also helped to initiate coordination between different government agencies and community organisations which is very important for promoting an integrated approach and helps to bring together expertise from diverse fields. Similarly, TECs observed that water saving techniques were helping to reduce use of water and becoming adopted by many households, water harvesting helped to resolve water scarcity and reduced localized grazing by livestock and yielded and income increased from the sustainable agriculture practices and handicrafts promotion helped to improve household economy, livelihoods and also built leadership among the women. These indicate that the expected impact is taking place in the project areas.

 


Tag: Agriculture Climate Change Adaptation Natural Resouce management River basin management Water resources Impact Women's Empowerment Local Governance Country Government Jobs and Livelihoods Awareness raising Coordination

42.

Implementation of SLM activities in each project site, increased awareness among the local government and community based organisations and helped to initiate evidence based management (using information on weather and information from baseline study) that help to address water related problems, degradation of pasture lands and risks to agriculture practices. During field visits, TECs observed awareness among local communities and local government and CBOs conforming impact of these interventions to improve status of sustainable was and ecosystem management.

Implementing EbA activities through communities increases awareness and builds capacity and improves the likelihoods of sustainability of initiatives.

Documentation and dissemination of information on EbA best practices helped to share knowledge for benefit of large population from various countries with water related risks. Similarly, improvement in legislation addressing water basin management issues will help to mainstream EbA in development practices for mitigation of such risks.

As a result of the review of outcomes to impacts, the overall likelihood of impacts being achieved is all Likely, hence the project is expected to achieve most of its major environmental objectives, and yield satisfactory environmental benefits by managing land degradation risk and its effectiveness is evaluated as Highly Satisfactory


Tag: Agriculture Natural Resouce management Water resources Sustainability Local Governance Communication Awareness raising Capacity Building Data and Statistics Civil Societies and NGOs

43.

Achievement of Project Output & Outcome

This section provides an overview of the main achievements of the project. Considering the results achieved under each of the outcomes, and the progress towards the overall objective, the project effectiveness is rated as Highly Satisfactory. The EBA project generated numerous significant results, meeting several of the planned accomplishments. The project objective was stated as “Ecosystem Based Adaptation Approach to Maintaining Water Security in Critical Water Catchments in Mongolia”.

The project supported community based- river basin management and climate change risk management by incorporating activities like policy reform, evidence based planning, infrastructure development, awareness generation, capacity enhancement of institutions involved in EbA, reducing energy consumption, increasing agricultural yields and improving household economy and decreased land degradation. It also applied in three pilot provinces (aimags) and successfully demonstrated a participatory approach of implementation with cooperation from government staff and local to national institutions. Most the project outputs are ranked individually as Highly Satisfactory; hence overall the achievement of outputs and activities is evaluated as Highly Satisfactory. Many of the project outcomes are also achieved as per planned, hence achievement of outcomes of the project is also rated as Highly Satisfactory and overall project is also rated as Highly Satisfactory.


Tag: Agriculture Crop production Climate Change Adaptation Disaster risk management Drinking water supply Ecosystem based adaption Energy River basin management Water resources Effectiveness Local Governance Implementation Modality Country Government Infrastructure Awareness raising Capacity Building Policy Advisory

44.

Component 1: Landscape Level integrated land use and water resources monitoring and planning system focused upon reduction of ecosystem vulnerability to climate change:

To achieve the component 1, project had identified three outputs. Activities and achievements of outputs are listed below

Output 1.1.: Ecological and Socio-economic Assessments (Baseline studies) as a basis for the development of Ecosystem-based Adaptation strategies for the target landscapes and for the development of River Basin Management Plans (Kharkhira/Turgen Ulz).

 


Tag: Climate Change Adaptation Ecosystem based adaption Environmental impact assessment Natural Resouce management River basin management Water resources

45.

Output 1.2.: Economic Valuations completed comparing the landscape level costs and benefits of EbA.

The economic valuations comparing costs and benefits of EbA is completed for Stage I and II study and Stage III study report will be submitted within this month and review will complete in the remaining time of the project. The project is expected to receive the final product by October, 2017.

  • Economic valuation; Stage I: Economic valuation of the ecosystem services and natural resources under climate change conditions in the Kharkhiraa, Turgen and Ulz river basins (phase I)
  • Economic valuation; Stage II: Cost and benefit analyses (CBA) to assess impacts of ecosystem based adaptation measures
  • Economic valuation; Stage III: Methodological guidance of identifying environmental, social and economic impacts of EbA measures in project in target eco-regions and mainstreaming best practices

Tag: Technical Support Data and Statistics

46.

Output 1.3.: Ecosystem-based Adaptation strategies for the target landscapes and River Basin Management Plans (Khakhira/Turgen, Ulz) completed and operational.

22 policy plans were developed and are operational, including 3 IWRMPs and 2 EbA strategies for 2 target basins and 17 Soum. EbA programs were developed providing plans for adaptation measures on the landscape level for each target areas. The project mainstreamed IWRM plans in all key sectors and institutions (both public and private) involving water users at all levels, so that one Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM) plan was officially adopted by all three target Aimags. The IWRM plan of Uvs lake – Tes River is approved by the Ministry of Environment and Green Development (MEGD) in compliance with the Article 4.8 of the “Law on Water” and submitted to cabinet for approval. After cabinet approval this will be send for approval by the parliament. Furthermore, concrete legal, institutional, financial and technical measures were defined for ensuring water security.

The outputs has achieved almost all of its major targets, and yielded some global environmental benefits, without shortcomings. These outputs can be presented as “best practice” and is rated as Highly Satisfactory. The project has accomplished most of the activities that were required to make EbA management sustainable by providing a viable long-term security to livelihoods and local ecology from climate change impacts; hence the outcome achievement is rated as Highly Satisfactory.


Tag: Ecosystem based adaption Natural Resouce management River basin management Water resources Country Government Jobs and Livelihoods Policy Advisory

47.

Component 2: Implementing landscape level adaptation techniques to maintain Ecosystem Integrity and Water Security under Conditions of Climate Change

To achieve the component 2, project had identified three outputs. Activities and achievements of outputs are listed below:

Output 2.1. Capacities of rural communities for monitoring natural resources and climate change impacts and for adaptive management in two watersheds strengthened

Capacity of local coordinators from 9 Soum units of the project was strengthened in the fields of climate change, EBA, environmental monitoring and evaluation. This helped to prepare human resource to work as environment expert at the local level.

Capacity and knowledge of the local staffs was strengthened in 8 different fields through 36 trainings. Similarly, more than 60 journalists also received this kind of training and joined advocacy events and received knowledge on climate change adaptation, EbA measures, IWRM, effective and efficient water use and water resource increase. After training and other events, journalist disseminated knowledge to general public through electronic and printing Medias.

Established Water User Groups (WUG) to establish sustainable means of protection, use and management of water resource in Ulaangom, Tarialn, Naranbulag soums of Uvs aimag and BayanDun Soum of Dornod aimag.


Tag: Climate Change Adaptation Ecosystem based adaption Environmental impact assessment Monitoring and Evaluation Capacity Building

48.

Output 2.2. Suite of physical techniques to improve ecosystem resilience established in two critical watersheds.

Spring protection: Total of 44 natural springs were rehabilitated with the project support. It helped to make clean water available for the local community and also livestock. This also helped herders to move back to their previous locations as this helped to abandon almost 450,000ha pasture land with flow of clean water. Approximately 10,000 rural population with 490,000 livestock benefitted from this activity. This helped to protect approximately 120,000ha important riparian zones from excessive grazing impact. Regular monitoring on streams, water quality, vegetation and use of springs, water points and wild animals is being conducted since 2014.

Agriculture activities: 15 small scale tree nurseries covering 25ha areas were established in cooperation with local EbA community groups. More than 300 locals trained though series of on-site trainings on tree and strawberry planting, greenhouse farming, irrigation technologies etc. The project trainers and local adaptation groups actively involved in these programs. Similarly, several reforestation and forest management activities covering 811.4ha in Kharkhiraa, Turgen river basin and 1359ha in Ulz river basin were conducted in target areas with the State funding.


Tag: Livestock Resilience building Drinking water supply Ecosystem based adaption Natural Resouce management River basin management Water resources Rural Capacity Building Civil Societies and NGOs

49.

Rehabilitation of wells: A total 23 engineered wells were repaired in Ulz river basin. Wells for repairing were selected based on their location of importance for endangered species such as White-naped Crane and Mongolian Gazelle in eastern region. Through repaired wells, a total of 10,000 ha of abandoned and remote pasture emerged to be re-used for livestock husbandry and a total of 138,000 ha were freed for grazing of wild animals. The number of beneficiaries are more than 103 herders.

Surface water accumulation: Small scale water reservoir with the volume of 18854cubic meters was constructed in Bayandun Soum of Dornod to irrigate 10ha of agricultural lands. The rain and snow water harvesting small reservoirs contracted on the west bank of Turgen River which can provide water for livestock in dry season. Water channel in Sagil soum of Uvs aimag was repaired for efficient water supply and this provide water to over 20,000 livestock of 80 households and also helped to improve 3400ha of degraded pasture land. Similarly, an innovative water reservoir called “dry well” with capacity of 55tonnes was established in Naranbulag soum of Uvs aimag to collect snowmelts and rain water. This (dry well) will be used to address water shortage during intensive irrigation period for 3 households (~3 ha). A traditional water reservoir of 9000 cubic meters capacity was constructed in Batnorov soum of Khentii aimag in Ulz river basin with local cofunding for snow and rain water harvesting and irrigating 12ha agricultural area during extended dry season without affecting its natural flow.


Tag: Agriculture Crop production Drinking water supply Natural Resouce management River basin management Water resources Wildlife Conservation

50.

Output 2.3. Regulatory and financial mechanisms for supporting climate change resilient livelihoods strategies.

Project conducted 21 trainings on processing wool and making woolen products to enhance skills of 300 local women. Similarly, project also conducted 7 trainings on handicrafts and small household items making (device for ritual milk and tea offering, pastry mold etc.) from wood and 205 people benefited from this training.

Project also initiated small grand program to improve and diversify the local livelihoods of local communities through income generation in all target soums and surrounding areas during 2014-2017. Similarly, 102 small projects are being implemented by local institutions including adaptation groups, cooperatives, environmental NGOs to improve agricultural production and increasing water use efficiency and restoring ecosystem resilience through rehabilitation of riparian area and reforestation.

Value added-eco felt product “Sonohon” brand was newly released.

Greenhouses with the area of 45x120m2 were built with support from the project. Mainly women headed households were given priority in this program. With introduction of strawberry and other vegetables income of the household compare to past increased by 7-8 times. 10,000 locals were involved in this training.

The outcome of Knowledge based natural resource use planning for improving sustainable economic development is achieved to some extent and the outcome is rated as Highly Satisfactory. Similarly, outputs under this outcome have achieved all of its targets, and yielded substantial environmental benefits of local and global value through capacity enhancement and knowledge based planning, without shortcomings. The outputs can be presented as “best practice”, hence is evaluated as Highly Satisfactory.


Tag: Agriculture Crop production Climate Change Adaptation Resilience building Women's Empowerment Jobs and Livelihoods Micro-credit Capacity Building Civil Societies and NGOs

51.

Component 3: Strengthening capacities/Institutions to support EbA strategies and integrated river basin management, their replication and mainstreaming in sector policies.

To achieve component 3, the project had identified 3 main outputs that need to be achieved. Activities and achievements of outputs are listed below.

Output 3.1: Ecosystem-based adaptation approaches/integrated river basin management mainstreamed in national resource use planning and implementation mechanisms in sector policies

Recommendation from EbA strategic priorities were reflected in the draft National Climate Change Adaptation programs for Agriculture, Water resource & Forest sectors. Mainly strategy of supporting socio-economic activities and ecological goods and services from rivers and wetlands, forest and rangeland ecosystems are reflected in these policies. Riverbed reforestation is highlighted as one of the emerging issues in Forest national program in relation to maintaining water services. In addition, data and information of the Risk and Vulnerability assessments reports of 2 ecoregions and Economic valuation of natural resource in context of climate change were used in the Mongolia’s second assessment report on climate change-2014 (Chapter II&III of MARCC-2014).

EbA principles & concepts were disseminated to Soum Governors through the EbA policy document distributed during National workshop of Soum Governors held in 30 October, 2014 in the Parliament House of Mongolia. Similarly, strategic priorities of EbA measures were disseminated through guidelines and advocacy materials during the national discussions of Governor’s administration offices of target Soums and Aimags and capacity building trainings organized for local stakeholders between 2014-2017.


Tag: Agriculture Agriculture policy Forestry Climate Change Adaptation Ecosystem based adaption Natural Resouce management River basin management Communication Institutional Strengthening Policy Advisory National Institutions

52.

Project organized several training, meetings/discussions to strengthen the capacity building of different stakeholders and also support EBA strategies and integrated river basin management, future replication and mainstreaming. All together more than 500 individuals were participated in these trainings. The types of training and number of participants were as follows:

  • Regional trainings on “Adaptation to Climate Change” with involvement of secondary school teachers (84 participants of which 90% female).
  • Training on introduction and, guidance to map natural borderlines wetlands around lakes (30 participants).
  • 1st level national training for experience sharing of wetland coordinators (52 participants).
  • Regional trainings for officers of the Eastern River basin administrations (68 participants).
  • Capacity building training for River basin councils and River basin administrations (182, 125male/57female).
  • Trainings on building and strengthening the capacity of Water Users Association members (110, male-88, female-22)

Tag: Climate Change Adaptation River basin management Capacity Building Civil Societies and NGOs National Institutions Regional Institutions

53.

Output 3.2.: Institutional structure for river basin management integrating climate change risks (Administration and Council) established and operation in the target areas as model for replication

In 2014 a set of environmental laws were amended which also included establishment of River Basin Administration (RBA). RBA management plans introduced in the Law on Water and Law on Water Pollution

Capacities of the RBAs have been improved through the development of Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM) plan, trainings on water harvesting, water use efficiency and software skills and equipment support. Integration of IWRM plan development and the formation of water user associations RBAs has been effective in the western areas to resolve the serious conflict (violent) among vegetables growers regarding use of water resources. Since IWRM has been successfully integrated as a planning method at governmental levels, institutions are also now capacitated to handle upcoming water conflicts in future.

IWRM itself promoted inter-sectoral collaboration, which hardly existed on Aimag levels before. Since intersectoral collaboration is also essential for the implementation of climate policies and other projects will also benefit from the structures established by this project. The project strengthened River Basin Councils (RBC) to ensure civil society participation in water management monitoring.


Tag: Climate Change Adaptation Environment Policy River basin management Water resources Technology

54.

Output 3.3.: Best practices are identified and program for up-scaling best practices developed and implemented

The best practices are identified by the project and the dissemination of it is under process as some of the printed materials are still under editing process. Some of the best practices are as follows:

A. A total of 13 springs were rehabilitated applying an innovative so called “double protection” techniques for recovery of overgrazed and degraded areas near springs. For the double protection, portable fences with wooden poles were constructed around the springs surrounding all degraded water catchment zone, in order to ensure natural regeneration of soil and vegetation. Within the fences, bushes and trees including Caragana (Caragana sp.) and willow (Salix sp) are planted to serve as a biological fences. Once the bushes and trees grow and reach certain height, the portable fences and wooden poles will be removed and used for other area. In addition, the construction techniques of established fences are considered as environmentally safe and sound. Three legged poles are placed on the subsoil without digging or making any damages to the earth. On the other hand, established legs are very tolerant to freezing and melting of snow and spring water. As a result of spring protection, water flow improved making water available for local community and their livestock. This enabled herders to move back to their previous locations. Through this activity, almost 40,000 ha of abandoned pasture land is being utilized through improved water flow. Approximately 6600 rural populations with 184,000 livestock benefitted. Most importantly, a total of 80,000 ha of essential riparian zones became free of excessive grazing impact. Rehabilitated natural springs and creeks are starting to flow and feed Ulz River water discharge, which is essential for the eastern steppe. Volume of four lakes has increased as well. The activity encouraged local people to learn the rehabilitation method and protect other springs. In addition, it triggered behavior change towards pasture use, including rotational use of pasture and promoting investment in implementing similar measures to improve their resilience.

B. Technology transfer site on ecological oriented agriculture/small scale tree nurseries with water saving and soil conservation techniques. With support of the project, local adaptation groups established 10 small scale tree nurseries covering 28.5 ha areas. The community members were involved in series of on-site trainings including tree and strawberry planting, greenhouse farming, irrigation technologies etc. In addition, several reforestation and forest management activities were conducted in target areas with the government funding covering 811.4 ha in Kharkhiraa, Turgen river basin and 1359 ha in Ulz river basin.


Tag: Agriculture Livestock Resilience building Natural Resouce management Site Conservation / Preservation Water resources Capacity Building

55.

C. Rehabilitation of Engineered wells: 20 wells were repaired since 2013. Wells for repairing were selected based on their location and importance for endangered species such as White-necked Crane and Mongolian Gazelle in eastern region. Through repaired wells, a total of 147.000 ha of abandoned and remote pasture land improved to use for livestock husbandry and a total of 138.800 ha were freed for grazing of wild animals. 103 herders benefited from this activities.

D. Within the scope of piloting water saving techniques, an innovative water reservoir called “dry well” to potentially collect snowmelts and rain water of about a volume of 55 tons was established in Naranbulag soum of Uvs aimag. The dry well will be used to overcome water shortage during extended drought period for at least 3 households’ lands (~3 ha). Based on the assessment on usefulness of the facility, this simple “dry well” is identified as good practice to replicate in other areas. All these practical approaches show benefits of overcoming water shortage, collecting water, increase of water efficiency following watering norms on types of plants and in return get economic gain on harvest and yields from animals. This also provided opportunity for locals to learn from each other, who obtained knowledge and skills and local governments to support replication of best practices within its Soums or beyond. Total area of irrigated is 3-4 ha.

E. Two traditional rain and snow melts catchments were constructed in Turgun soum according to the pilot design and drawings developed in 2014 which is not required to be approved by the Technical Committee of Ministry of Construction and Urban Development (MCUD). The established catchments with the total volume of 3000m3 is estimated to provide 10 thousand heads of livestock with drinking water for 2 months during the extended dry season.

The project was able to achieve the outcome of Local economic development strengthened through diversification, hence outcome is rated as Highly Satisfactory. Similarly, the outputs under this outcome have achieved all of the targets, and yielded substantial environmental benefits by establishing community enterprises, establishing water reservoirs, supporting sustainable bio-briquette production and sustainable Agriculture. The outputs can be presented as “best practice”, hence it is evaluated as Highly Satisfactory.


Tag: Livestock Drinking water supply Energy Natural Resouce management Water resources Wildlife Conservation Innovation

56.

Country Ownership

This project was developed with the lessons from several projects related to Climate Change and water managements. The project was implemented by the Ministry of Environment and Tourism (MET). Besides, other ministries like Ministry of Mineral Resources and Energy, Local Government, Administration for Land Affairs, construction, Specialized Inspection Agency and River Basin Councils. These government agencies were not only executing and implementing project activities but also involved from the project development stage. Moreover, the project outcomes and outputs identification was also carried out involving relevant government agencies. The result of the project complemented Government of Mongolia’s priorities and development strategy. Therefore Government of Mongolia has ownership in this project. Local Governments and national government have expressed their commitments to support continuation of the outcomes of this project.

Finally, the project will contribute to safeguarding the ecosystem and environment by enforcing Ecosystem Based Adaptation and addressing risks related climate change by creating an environment for economic development in the area. The project outcomes will bring Mongolia a step closer to achieving MDG Goal 7: Ensure environmental sustainability.


Tag: Ecosystem based adaption Environment Policy Local Governance Ownership Project and Programme management Country Government Agenda 2030

57.

Mainstreaming

The mainstreaming of River basin Management in natural resource use planning and implementation mechanism in sector policies is one of the main output of the project. Enhancing knowledge and involving local government and community based institutions in project implementation has helped to mainstream climate change and river basin management. Development of a knowledge base and information supports evidence based planning. Enhancing knowledge and making communities aware of climate change impacts help in decrease risks and safeguard livelihoods and is in line with the UNDP Country Program Action Plan (CPAP).

As per project document, the project development process involved analysis of various options of management by utilising scientific knowledge, indigenous knowledge and lessons learned from past projects. The project’s efforts were focused on identifying policy gaps and recommending policy needs, enhancing capacity of local’s to monitor natural resources and climate change impacts and management of river basins, establish institution for river basin management, networking with like-minded national, regional and international institutions for fostering EBA mainstreaming in resource planning and sector policies. The EbA approach to address land and water management was relevant as people had a clear vested interest due to the direct contribution to their livelihoods.

The fundamental principle of the project was to address policy gaps, knowledge management, economic development of local communities and mainstreaming river basin management into development planning.


Tag: Climate Change Adaptation Natural Resouce management River basin management Sustainability Local Governance Knowledge management Monitoring and Evaluation Policy Advisory

58.

Sustainability

The project results are likely to be sustainable beyond the project life. As will be seen below, the sustainability at the project level is actually very strong and it is difficult to see what more those involved could have done.

Financial: The outlook for the long-term financial sustainability of the project appears unusually good but it is connected to the interest of the local government and the national government. MNET mentioned that they are committed to continue their support to these project activities. Similarly, the local government mentioned that they will continue their support and will utilise information in planning exercises help to mitigate risks from climate change and River basin management. There are several other projects being implemented in these areas which will be utilising the community groups formed by this project to implement their activities so this will directly or indirectly support the continuation of some of the project activities. Similarly, some projects are in the pipeline or being developed. These also assure financial sustainability at project site level. Financial sustainability is therefore Likely.

Socio-economic: The social sustainability of the project appears very promising. The awareness-raising activities have certainly been beneficial and undoubtedly changed people’s minds at the community level and at local and national government levels as regards river basin management and climate change impacts. The empowerment of local communities through awareness raising and involvement in river basin management and monitoring of natural resources and climate change impacts has been one of the lynchpins upon which all behavioural change has occurred. For many others, this has been matched by provision of safety measures and knowledge base establishment directly linked to land and water degradation risk management and these arrangements are particularly strong. This has created a supportive environment and as a result enjoys a very wide support base which is being used to help in replicating the approach in other vulnerable areas. As a result, the socio-economic sustainability is adjudged to be Likely.


Tag: Climate Change Adaptation Natural Resouce management River basin management Sustainability Government Cost-sharing Local Governance Country Government Awareness raising Capacity Building

59.

Institutional and Governance: The institutional sustainability of the project is good. Those agencies directly involved appear strongly committed towards its aims and the impacts that it has had. Clearly, the decision to route all activities directly through local government institutions and local communities has paid dividends in this respect, and the local government officials at the pilot sites are not only extremely supportive of what has been accomplished but are also strong advocates of its achievements. Project also contributed to establish institution and enhanced their capacity and activities was to support legal provision made in the new laws of the government of Mongolia. Moreover, government authorities are sensitised on land and water degradation issues and also river basin management is mainstreamed in natural resource use planning in sector policies so they may prioritise future outputs of this project. Therefore, the institutional sustainability is ranked as Likely.

Environmental: Environment sustainability is one of the important elements of the project strategy. The project achievements will directly reduce vulnerability of life and property and also ecological resources of Mongolia. The capacity development, policy formulation and evidence based planning to mainstream river basin management and climate change will make project outcomes sustainable. Moreover, involvement of local communities and community based organisations assures adaptation to river and land degradation and makes the project achievements sustainable. Possible precautions are taken to safeguard water harvesting and manage catchments The activities of this project address potential environmental risks so there is less possibility of environmental risks associated with the sustainability of this project, hence the environmental sustainability is deemed to be Likely.

The overall sustainability of the regional component is ranked as Likely.


Tag: Environment Policy Sustainability Local Governance Country Government Capacity Building Institutional Strengthening

60.

Catalytic Role and Replication

Discussion of replication in relation to the EbA Project has to be undertaken at two levels – the macro-level of replicating it as a national-scale project to cover a wide area, and the micro-level with regard to replication at site-based interventions. Success of EbA in addressing environmental and water related issues in the project sites has indicated that the approach can work in Mongolia and could be replicated in broad area including all other vulnerable parts of the country. The integrated nature of the policy-level mainstreaming, awareness generation on EbA, climate change and river basin management and generation of knowledge among local communities and development planers, promotion of increased enforcement, research and monitoring provide a solid model of success and that it may influence future project design in the country.

At the micro-level, the project’s performance was good. Most outputs of the project fall under the middle two levels of catalytic role, i.e. demonstration and replication. It also creates environment for economic development in these areas. Creation of environment for economic development will also provide incentives for mainstreaming EbA into National Development Plans.


Tag: Climate Change Adaptation River basin management Sustainability Knowledge management Programme/Project Design Sustainability Civil Societies and NGOs

61.

Lessons learned with up-scaling needs to be replicated in other vulnerable areas of Mongolia. The project contributed to development of legislation and trained local government staffs and community members. These will help to strengthen EbA efforts and also make replication easier. Government agencies, local government institutions and community based organisations and local communities expressed interest to replicate lessons from this project in wide areas.

Besides Mongolia, the learning from this project could be useful for other countries with similar land degradation problems. Hence for the benefit of projects and for replication in other areas, the project disseminated lessons learned to a wide audience through various means like report distribution, information sharing through different networks, shared with other AF and UNDP projects, international networks and other institutions.

The project conducted meetings and workshops with government officials and other stakeholders. Similarly, exposure visits were conducted for line departments and stakeholder representatives. The awareness generation among line department, government agencies and other stakeholders will play a catalytic role to replicate lessons in other vulnerable areas. In addition, three projects are being developed to submit to GEF, AF and GCF and expected to build on the outcomes of this project, especially to support issues around River basin management. The project also developed an exit strategy.


Tag: Natural Resouce management River basin management Global Environment Facility fund Local Governance Country Government Capacity Building Institutional Strengthening Policy Advisory

Recommendations
1

Recommendation 1: Corrective actions for the design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of the project

  1. The project provided support to rural schools to establish rain water harvest. But most of the water running from the roof was dropping down due to low height of the collecting canal. Similarly, to store collected water only one drum was available. School had big roof and that could help to collect large quantity of water and for that they need bigger reservoir. Also, the height of the canal on which water from the roof drop need to be height then the edge of the roof.
  2. The project target areas have a large number of livestock which supply large amounts of dung. The dung could be used for bio-briquette production. Project supported only one bio-briquette. Briquette production program could be supported in all areas of these soum to decrease pressure on wood for energy.
  3. Solar technology was used for meteorology activities, food drying, water pumping and heating. Out of 23 well only 5 were equipped with solar pump and few household heating piloted using solar technology so using these experiences future replication should give more priority to solar technology. Use of solar generator reduce cost of fossil fuel. Introducing solar generator and training locals on maintenance of them will reduce cost for irrigation and also provide income generation opportunity by repairing generators.
  4. Snow water collection and rain water collection canals are not cemented so water loss from seepage is high. Such canals should be made concrete using locally available stones and pebble.
  5. In some areas, within 100m distance from the irrigation canal, farmers were irrigating agriculture field by pumping water using fossil fuel. Extension of irrigation canal in such areas could help to improve agriculture and also reduce farmers farming cost by reducing cost of fossil fuel.
2

Recommendation 2: Actions to follow up or reinforce initial benefits from the project

 

VI. The project developed integrated river basin management guidelines and also proposed two protected areas. These are approved by the local government and also approved by ministry. Follow up should be made to approve it from cabinet and thereafter by parliament.

3

Recommendation 3: Proposals for future directions underlying main objectives

VI.      It is recommended to upscale and replicate lessons learned from this project by UNDP, Government of Mongolia and other agencies working in similar issues. There could be many potential donors willing to invest in such activities, so it is also recommended that lessons learned should be disseminated to a large audience including other areas of the water basin and beyond. UNDP and AF could use its network for dissemination.

4

Recommendation 4: Proposals for future directions underlying main objectives

VII. It is recommended to promote insurance mechanism in pastoralism and agriculture to safeguard farmers. Due to climate change weather became very unpredictable. If farmers whose economy is not so strong have to take risk of climate change then their situation will further worsened. Hence to encourage farming and pastoralism, insurance mechanisms should be promoted. Considering the economic situation of the farmers, premium of such insurance should not be high or be subsidised.

1. Recommendation:

Recommendation 1: Corrective actions for the design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of the project

  1. The project provided support to rural schools to establish rain water harvest. But most of the water running from the roof was dropping down due to low height of the collecting canal. Similarly, to store collected water only one drum was available. School had big roof and that could help to collect large quantity of water and for that they need bigger reservoir. Also, the height of the canal on which water from the roof drop need to be height then the edge of the roof.
  2. The project target areas have a large number of livestock which supply large amounts of dung. The dung could be used for bio-briquette production. Project supported only one bio-briquette. Briquette production program could be supported in all areas of these soum to decrease pressure on wood for energy.
  3. Solar technology was used for meteorology activities, food drying, water pumping and heating. Out of 23 well only 5 were equipped with solar pump and few household heating piloted using solar technology so using these experiences future replication should give more priority to solar technology. Use of solar generator reduce cost of fossil fuel. Introducing solar generator and training locals on maintenance of them will reduce cost for irrigation and also provide income generation opportunity by repairing generators.
  4. Snow water collection and rain water collection canals are not cemented so water loss from seepage is high. Such canals should be made concrete using locally available stones and pebble.
  5. In some areas, within 100m distance from the irrigation canal, farmers were irrigating agriculture field by pumping water using fossil fuel. Extension of irrigation canal in such areas could help to improve agriculture and also reduce farmers farming cost by reducing cost of fossil fuel.
Management Response: [Added: 2018/11/01] [Last Updated: 2021/01/16]

This recommendation is partially accepted. Some of these recommendations are specific to the beneficiary or the area. With the closure of the project, there is no fund available for such detailed and extended activities suggested. However, the recommendations related to the small scale-fixing of the roof and cementing the rain water collection canals were suggested to the beneficiaries. The recommendation related to the briquette production program in all areas of the soum is not supported as it is not in line with the project/programme overall focus, therefore no funding earmarked.  

For programming purpose, the recommendations are taken in general terms to be applied throughout the programme when similar activities are planned for relevant component.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
The lessons learnt and recommendations are disseminated in the programme for consideration and integration into the similar project/programme components.
[Added: 2018/11/01]
CO M&E officer 2018/11 Completed
2. Recommendation:

Recommendation 2: Actions to follow up or reinforce initial benefits from the project

 

VI. The project developed integrated river basin management guidelines and also proposed two protected areas. These are approved by the local government and also approved by ministry. Follow up should be made to approve it from cabinet and thereafter by parliament.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/11/01] [Last Updated: 2021/01/16]

Recommendation partially supported.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Consultation with NDP, Mr. Battulga and hand over the follow-up action as part of the Exit Strategy to the Division of River Basin Management, MET
[Added: 2018/11/01]
NPC 2017/12 Completed Consultation done and the exit strategy approved and accepted. Current status: Steering committee was established to develop a comprehensive regulation on the integrated water resources management at the MET. Draft document completed and submitted for the discussion of Minister’s Council. History
3. Recommendation:

Recommendation 3: Proposals for future directions underlying main objectives

VI.      It is recommended to upscale and replicate lessons learned from this project by UNDP, Government of Mongolia and other agencies working in similar issues. There could be many potential donors willing to invest in such activities, so it is also recommended that lessons learned should be disseminated to a large audience including other areas of the water basin and beyond. UNDP and AF could use its network for dissemination.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/11/01] [Last Updated: 2021/01/16]

Lessons learned from the project was widely disseminated through several publications and advocacy materials. Another event to disseminate the lessons learned is the project’s closing workshop. Potential donor funding is sought and a soft pipeline project (EBA Phase II) is under formulation.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Lessons learned to be discussed and raised among different stakeholders during the Closing Workshop.
[Added: 2018/11/01]
NPC 2017/12 Completed Closing workshop was organized on 8th December, 2017
4. Recommendation:

Recommendation 4: Proposals for future directions underlying main objectives

VII. It is recommended to promote insurance mechanism in pastoralism and agriculture to safeguard farmers. Due to climate change weather became very unpredictable. If farmers whose economy is not so strong have to take risk of climate change then their situation will further worsened. Hence to encourage farming and pastoralism, insurance mechanisms should be promoted. Considering the economic situation of the farmers, premium of such insurance should not be high or be subsidised.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/11/01] [Last Updated: 2021/01/16]

Recommendations will be considered in formulation of the new programming documents such as GCF and/or EBA II.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Recommendation will be reflected in the GCF proposal.
[Added: 2018/11/01]
UNDP CO 2018/09 Completed The proposal includes a review of current livestock policy and related public/private programmes (e.g. dzud relief programmes, insurance schemes, etc.)

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