The United Nations system is working to help people and communities in countries, especially those most vulnerable, to adapt to the adverse effects of climate change while continuing to grow and achieve their development goals and aspirations.

The UN system's work in this area is governed by the stipulations of COP decision 1/CP.10 and the Nairobi Work Programme on Impacts, Vulnerability and Adaptation to Climate Change. Moreover, a large number of sectoral activities mandated by the system's governing bodies in areas such as agriculture and food security, disaster risk reduction, health, water, tourism are central to the challenge of adaptation work. Adaptation strategies are being developed including these areas as climate change considerations get further streamlined in UN system activities. The Least Developed Countries, Small Island Developing States and countries in Africa are the main focus of such activities, as they face the most difficult challenges and urgently need the assistance of the international community.

UN system action in the adaptation area includes:

Operational activities in key sectors and support for adaptation at the local level

Scaling up sustainable land management in Sub-Saharan Africa within the TerrAfrica framework; Pan-African Land Policy Framework; MENARID umbrella programme for sustainable management of the drylands of the Middle East and North Africa region; decreasing vulnerability to climate variability in African river basins;