Lao PDR is extremely vulnerable to climate change, particularly the impacts of floods and droughts. Since the 1960s, the country has experienced an increase in the frequency and severity of these events, resulting in increased impacts on, and risks to, vulnerable communities in Lao PDR. These impacts include, for example, damage to crops, thereby decreasing food and financial security. The severity of climate change impacts is further compounded by non-climate change-related factors such as increasing urbanisation, ecosystem degradation and deforestation. 


risk, in addition to threatening assets and infrastructure of urban communities in Luang Prabang city. Anthropogenic drivers such as increasing urbanization, ecosystem degradation and deforestation exacerbate the vulnerability of these communities to climate hazards — specifically floods and droughts. As ecosystems are destabilized by unsustainable use, impacts from extreme climate events disrupt the delivery of ecosystem services and further reduce natural hazard protections provided by these ecosystems.  

The vulnerable communities of the Xe Bang Hieng River Basin do not have the capacity, or the mandate, to reduce the risks and vulnerabilities to climate change-induced floods and droughts they are exposed to. Communities in the Xe Bang Hieng River Basin also lack the capacity to respond to and recover from climate-induced disasters, such as floods and drought. Local-, district- and provincial-level interventions are required to address the numerous vulnerabilities, and drivers of vulnerabilities, of these communities. In addition, officials in Luang Prabang city do not have the sufficient institutional and technical capacity to effectively plan for and respond to flood events, while communities in the city do not have sufficient awareness of the risks from floods or the drivers of increased flooding in urban areas to take adaptive action. 


The proposed project will strengthen the climate resilience of communities in two particularly vulnerable areas of Lao PDR – namely Savannakhet Province and Luang Prabang city – particularly focussing on the impacts of floods and droughts.

This improved resilience will be achieved through three complementary project components, specifically:

i) Developing national and provincial capacities for Integrated Catchment Management (ICM) and integrated urban Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EbA) for climate risk reduction;

ii) Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EbA) interventions, with supporting protective infrastructure and livelihood enhancement; and iii) Knowledge management and Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E). 

Project Outcome:

  • Enhanced national and provincial capacities for integrated catchment management and integrated water resource management in target rural and urban communities. 

  • Reduced flood risk through headwater conservation, restoration, and protective infrastructure, supported by climate-resilient and alternative livelihoods. 

  • Effective knowledge management and monitoring and evaluation (M&E) through awareness/advocacy and monitoring of climate change impacts and adaptation opportunities in target rural and urban communities. 

Project details:

  • Status: Ongoing
  • Duration: December 2022 – November 2026 
  • Geographic coverage: Savannakhet Province and Luang Prabang City  
  • Project Office: UNDP in Lao PDR
  • Focus Area: Climate change, Disaster Risk Reduction, Natural Resource Management    
  • Collaborating Partners: Department of Water Resources (DWR), Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MoNRE) 
  • Total project budget: 32,792,037 USD 

  • Donors: 

    GEF/LDCF:  5,329,452 USD 

    UNDP (TRAC): 250,000 USD