Metro Media/IWMI

WLE at COP26


The UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) will bring parties together to accelerate action toward the goals of the Paris Agreement and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). WLE is co-hosting four sessions at the Water Pavilion, a multimedia platform located in the COP26 Blue Zone which will optimize virtual interactions between the COP26 venue in Glasgow and different locations (satellite hubs) around the world.

Organized by the Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI), the Pavilion will promote ideas and solutions, consolidate thinking on the role water can play to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement and support ambitious and science-based global climate action. WLE will be reflecting on its research and experience to suggest sustainable, inclusive and proven land and water management solutions that can help countries and communities in the Global South adapt to and mitigate the effects of climate change.

In addition, WLE will also be participating in an event in the WWF Panda Pavilion to present the results of its research on soil health. 

Details of each session are provided below.

All sessions are free and will be livestreamed at

Read this IWMI/WLE brief on the imperative of transforming water systems for climate change adaptation and resilience in the context of COP26.


WLE sessions

From the ground up: Soil health for climate change mitigation, resilience and food system transformation  

Date and time: November 3 (4.00 PM – 5.30 PM GMT)

Despite the multiple proven benefits that improved soil health provides, for food security, carbon sequestration and climate resilience, significant challenges remain in advancing action on the ground.

This event will highlight the perspectives of different actors on soil health, how they are taking action to contribute, and the impacts that their soil-focused work is having for productivity, climate, nature and people.

It will also highlight some of the key gaps and challenges that need to be overcome and showcase a burgeoning initiative borne out of the UN Food Systems Summit process: the Coalition of Action for Soil Health (CA4SH), which will bring together actors to mobilize investment and strengthen the enabling environment for soil health to help simultaneously meet the goals of the Paris Agreement, Agenda 2030 and Land Degradation Neutrality targets.

Organizers: World Wildlife Fund (WWF), World Agroforestry, Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR), the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA), the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification and Drought (UNCCD), World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), and the Alliance of Bioversity International and International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT).

For more information click here

Gender and social inclusion across the water-food-climate nexus 

Date and time: November 9 (9.15 AM – 10.15 AM GMT)

How is climate change reshaping the water–food–gender nexus? What lessons have emerged to inform water, land and ecosystem restoration approaches that are intentionally designed to strengthen the resilience of climate-vulnerable communities and livelihoods across the Global South? This session brings together researchers and practitioners from Asia and Africa to discuss ongoing interventions – which range from gender-inclusive to gender-transformative. 

Organizers: WLE and Global Water Partnership Central Africa (GWP-CAf) 

For more information, speakers and to watch the session live click here.

Water and climate-smart agriculture for adaptation

Date and time: November 9 (10.15 AM – 11.15 AM GMT)

Scientific evidence can help improve the sustainability of water use in agriculture and enhance climate adaptation and resilience. This event will present potential agricultural water management (AWM) practices that have a proven ability to enhance water resilience, increase yields and, where possible, reduce emissions. The event will highlight:  

  • The approaches used to prioritize a location-specific portfolio of smart AWM practices and improve investment decisions. 
  • Lessons learned from convergence and co-financing mechanisms that can mobilize resources for specialized development programs targeting the adaptation of climate-smart agriculture at scale. 
  • Socio-technical innovations for accelerating investment and collective action in small-scale irrigation as an adaptation/mitigation measure in Africa. 
  • Upscaling innovations.

Organizers: WLE and CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS)

For more information and to watch the session live click here

Integrated land and water solutions for climate change mitigation

Date and time: November 9 (11.30 AM – 12.30 PM GMT)

Severe land degradation limits the ability of a system to deliver vital ecosystem services, including sequestering carbon, regulating water cycles and strengthening food and nutrition security. With over 40% of the Earth’s surface degraded, impacting over 3.2 billion people, business as usual is not an option. This session will bring together multiple stakeholders to strategize integrated land and water solutions for climate change mitigation. This includes understanding the current state of an area of land so that interventions can be prioritized, and progress tracked over time, and ensuring that integrated interventions are tailored to local conditions, deliver multiple benefits and are reflected in global frameworks and policies. Specifically, the session will address key questions, including:

  1. What can we do to reduce greenhouse gas emissions for food/water systems?
  2. What can we do to increase sequestration? 
  3. How will these interventions be implemented and what is needed to drive them to scale?
  4. Who will pay for the interventions?

Organizers: WLE, Rabobank, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, and the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) 

For more information and to watch the session live click here

Reinforcing climate resilience through integrated climate solutions

Date and time: November 10 (12.00 PM – 12.45 PM GMT)

Droughts and floods are the most destructive natural hazards, endangering agricultural production systems and threatening food and nutritional security in Asia and Africa. Malnutrition and famine due to droughts impact vulnerable communities the most severely, especially women, children and the elderly. Meanwhile, the threat of drought often prevents farmers from investing in advanced water management technologies and practices; many smallholder farmers often prepare for the possibility of climatic shocks by engaging in conservative risk management strategies that result in low yields and limits to profitability. Innovative technologies and gender-responsive climate risk insurance schemes can provide risk protection among vulnerable and marginal smallholder farmers, including women and youth.

This side event will showcase possibilities for innovative solutions, policy developments and best practices for more effectively navigating the impacts of future climate shocks. These will include drawing on the power of big data analytics and on-the-ground interventions to develop an improved understanding of scale-dependent challenges related to tackling food security while minimizing water-use conflicts and environmental impacts.

The event will discuss/answer the following questions:

  1. What are some of the innovative approaches being employed by governments and the private sector to strengthen resilience and mitigate the effects of climate change?
  2. How are farming communities creating viable livelihood opportunities under changing climatic conditions?
  3. How can we promote a water-systems approach to help manage risks from water-related disasters and build resilience to climate change for wider system transformation?
  4. How can digital technologies and gender-responsive solutions be integrated into different models of climate risk insurance to help some of the most vulnerable communities cope with the impacts of climate shocks such as floods and droughts?
  5. How can we better invest in climate insurance in developing countries, providing valuable lessons for impact investors, insurers and policymakers to strengthen resilience using insurance as a tool to mitigate the effects of climate change?

Organizers: WLE, International Water Management Institute (IWMI), Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS), and Japan's Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (MAFF). 

For more information and to watch the session live click here.