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U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)

Overview

USAID is the lead U.S. Government agency that works to end extreme global poverty and enable resilient, democratic societies to realize their potential. We partner to end extreme poverty and to promote resilient, democratic societies while advancing our security and prosperity.

U.S. foreign assistance has always had the twofold purpose of furthering America's interests while improving lives in the developing world. USAID carries out U.S. foreign policy by promoting broad-scale human progress at the same time it expands stable, free societies, creates markets and trade partners for the United States, and fosters good will abroad.

Spending less than 1 percent of the total federal budget, USAID works in over 100 countries to:

Adaptation work: 

USAID’s adaptation work reaches field missions in Africa, Asia and Latin America with projects that support science, governance, and action for adaptation.

Activities build the resilience of countries, communities, individuals, and natural assets to climate change and variability from sudden events such as floods, storms as well as droughts and slower onset impacts such as hotter temperatures and sea-level rise. USAID activities enhance delivery of weather and climate information and tools and pilot new approaches to building resilience. 

Climate Services

USAID works with countries around the world to increase access to climate and weather science, data and tools so that countries and communities can identify vulnerabilities and develop adaptation strategies to build climate resilience. USAID supports the growing global Climate Services Partnership (CSP), which matches decision-makers with information under the international Global Framework for Climate Services system. 

SERVIR-Global

The SERVIR-Global program helps some 30 countries access and use satellite imagery and climate and weather information. A collaborative effort by USAID and NASA, SERVIR provides decision-support tools via global hubs in East Africa, Central America, Hindu Kush/Himalaya region, with more hubs coming soon. 

High Mountain Adaptation Partnership (HiMAP)

The HiMAP Partnership unites scientists, government officials and development practitioners working in glacier-dependent areas, including the Andes and the Himalaya-Hindu Kush and Central Asia regions. The partnership is a community of researchers and decision makers pursuing innovative approaches to lowering risks, for example from glacier lake outburst floods, and increasing development in high mountain areas. 

Insurance for Farmers

Affordable insurance can help poor farmers prepare for and cope with droughts and severe weather events, which may become more common with climate change. Insurance is not a stand-alone solution, but it can be effective when combined with other risk management measures. USAID supports several projects to test these ideas and build the climate resilience of vulnerable households.

Gender and Climate Change 

Women are disproportionately vulnerable to the effects of climate change. At the same time, they possess unique skills for addressing climate change, especially knowledge of local ecosystems, agriculture and natural resources management. USAID adaptation efforts integrate gender perspectives into activities because programs are more effective when women are engaged.