3.1. Technical Details

For a deeper exploration of the details included in the Paris Agreement Rulebook, the following content seeks to probe the decisions reached by the CMA on adaptation communications. To structure this exploration and provide some guidance for implementation, the discussion is focused on the key questions of who, what, when, and where; for more on this approach, please see the associated methodology.


The Annex of decision 9/CMA.1 lists the information which may be included in an adaptation communication. The full list is copied below. 

  • a) National circumstances, institutional arrangements and legal frameworks;
  • b) Impacts, risks and vulnerabilities, as appropriate;
  • c) National adaptation priorities, strategies, policies, plans, goals and actions;
  • d) Implementation and support needs of, and provision of support to, developing country Parties;
  • e) Implementation of adaptation actions and plans, including:
    • i. Progress and results achieved;
    • ii. Adaptation efforts of developing countries for recognition;
    • iii. Cooperation on enhancing adaptation at the national, regional and international level, as appropriate;
    • iv. Barriers, challenges and gaps related to the implementation of adaptation;
    • v. Good practices, lessons learned and information-sharing;
    • vi. Monitoring and evaluation;
  • f) Adaptation actions and/or economic diversification plans, including those that result in mitigation co-benefits;
  • g) How adaptation actions contribute to other international frameworks and/or conventions;
  • h) Gender-responsive adaptation action and traditional knowledge, knowledge of indigenous peoples and local knowledge systems related to adaptation, where appropriate;
  • i) Any other information related to adaptation.
  • j) Parties have asked the Adaptation Committee and Working Group II of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change to develop draft supplementary guidance by 2022. This guidance could be voluntarily used by Parties (19/CMA.1, para. 15).

Once Parties communicate their adaptation communications, the communications will be stored in a public registry (Paris Agreement, Article 7.12). In 2018, Parties adopted modalities and procedures for such a public registry (10/CMA.1, Annex).

Adaptation communication will also serve as an important input to the global stocktake. For the global stocktake, the Secretariat will prepare a synthesis report on the state of adaptation efforts, experience and priorities (19/CMA.1, para. 23b). This synthesis report will be based, in part, on the adaptation communications (19/CMA.1, para. 36c).


Article 7.10 of the Paris Agreement notes that “each Party should, as appropriate” prepare an adaptation communication.


Neither the Paris Agreement nor the Paris Rulebook provide a deadline for submitting adaptation communications. The Paris Agreement says that Parties should “submit and update periodically…without creating any additional burden for developing country Parties” (Paris Agreement, Article 7.10). In 2018, Parties decided to invite adaptation communications to be submitted “in time to inform each global stocktake” (9/CMA.1, para. 6).


The Agreement notes that, as appropriate, the adaptation communication can be submitted with other documents, such as a national adaptation plan, NDC, or national communication (Paris Agreement, Article 7.11). NDCs are to be communicated every five years and national communications every four years.

3.2. Linkages with Other Elements of the Paris Agreement

Various elements of the Paris Agreement Rulebook are linked together, both implicitly and explicitly. These linkages build the Agreement’s plan-implement-review cycle and will support the implementation of the Agreement. This discussion details some of the linkages with adaptation communications, building on the efforts first elaborated in Dagnet et al. (2017) and Dagnet et al. (2018), and including updated information from the final decisions reached by the CMA.

Ex-ante Finance Information. These elements are linked because developing countries may take into account the information provided by contributor countries in order to inform their adaptation plans and actions, which could be captured in adaptation communications or the adaptation components of NDCs. Article 7.13 of the Paris Agreement also speaks to “continuous and enhanced international support” provided to support implementation of adaptation communications, inter alia.

Enhanced Transparency Framework. These elements are linked because Parties may submit their adaptation communication “as a component of or in conjunction with other communications or documents. . .” (Paris Agreement, Article 7.11). This means Parties could submit their adaptation communication as part of their biennial transparency reports. Further, decision 9/CMA.1 solidified a linkage between adaptation communications and the enhanced transparency framework in deciding that “Parties may, as appropriate, also submit and update their adaptation communication as a component of or in conjunction with the reports on impacts and adaptation as stipulated in Article 13, paragraph 8” (9/CMA.1, para. 4). However, if a Party submits its adaptation communication as part of the biennial transparency report, “it should clearly identify which part of the report is the adaptation communication” (18/CMA.1, para 13).

Global Stocktake. The global stocktake is to consider the “state of adaptation efforts, support, experience and priorities,” specifically including the information from the adaptation communication (19/CMA.1, para. 36c). Further, Party reports and communications under the Paris Agreement are a key source of inputs to the global stocktake (19/CMA.1, para. 37a).


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