Tanzania hosts a variety of ecosystems, including mountain, drylands, wetlands, coastal and marine ecosystems, many of which are trans-boundary (e.g. the Lake Tanganyika ecosystem, which is shared between four countries). These ecosystems directly support the livelihoods of many Tanzanians and much of the country’s economy as a whole, providing goods and services including food, water, medicine, building materials, fuel and numerous natural attractions that support tourism.

The pressure placed on Tanzania’s ecosystems has been steadily growing as the human population increases, the economy expands, and more ecosystem goods and services are appropriated, traded and consumed. At the same time, there are signs of climate change, including a roughly 1°C increase in mean annual temperature, as well as decreasing annual rainfall. Global climate models project further mean annual temperature increases, of 1° to 2.7°C by the 2060s, while precipitation projections show significant uncertainties, with likely increases but also seasonal changes. All these changes have impacts on agro-ecological systems as well as cities.

This study, commissioned by WWF-UK, explores questions around integrating ecosystem-based approaches to climate adaptation into national policies and plans, focusing on the links between ecosystems, climate adaptation, and poverty alleviation, and the governance arrangements needed to support this.

The key questions addressed are:

1. How do ecosystem goods and services support human well-being and the reduction of climate risks and social vulnerability?
2. To what extent have environmental considerations and ecosystem-based adaptation strategies been
integrated into development policies and plans?
3. What are the opportunities for, and constraints to, further integration?

The project involved three country studies, in Belize, Nepal and Tanzania. This report is based on a review of existing literature and documentation, interviews with key stakeholders, and a participatory workshop convened in Dar es Salaam in November 2010.

Download the report (PDF, 800KB; external link)