Local Climate Adaptive Living (LoCAL) Facility

United Nations Capital Development Fund


The Local Climate Adaptive Living (LoCAL) Facility was designed and launched in 2011 by the of the UN Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) with the aim of promoting climate change–resilient communities and local economies by establishing a standard and internationally recognized country-based mechanism to channel climate finance to local government authorities in LDCs and to increase local resilience, thereby contributing to achievement of the Paris Agreement and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly the goals of poverty eradication (SDG 1), sustainable cities and communities (SDG11) and climate action (SDG 13). LoCAL increases awareness and capacities to respond to climate change at the local level, integrates climate change adaptation into local governments’ planning and budgeting systems in a participatory and gender-sensitive manner, and increases the amount of finance available to local governments for climate change adaptation.

LoCAL combines performance-based climate resilience grants (PBCRGs) with technical and capacity-building support. PBCRGs ensure programming and verification of climate change expenditures at the local level and offer strong incentives for general performance improvements targeting areas of importance for enhanced resilience. The PBCRG can be seen as an earmarked cross-sectoral grant with conditions attached to the use of its funding for climate change adaptation beyond business as usual. Combined with regular grant allocations, PBCRGs enable 100 per-cent of the investments in climate-sensitive sectors to become climate resilient over time. They include a set of minimum conditions, performance measures and a menu of eligible investments.

The Programme operates in three distinct phases:
Phase I: Piloting, consists of an initial scoping analysis, followed by testing in two to four local governments. As of 2020, The Gambia, Lesotho, Tanzania and Tuvalu are in Phase I; Nepal, Lao PDR and Mali are preparing to enter Phase II.
Phase II: Consolidating, takes place in 5–10 local governments in a country. It involves collecting lessons and demonstrating the mechanism’s effectiveness at a larger scale. As of 2020, Ghana, Mozambique, Niger, Bangladesh and Benin are in Phase II.
Phase III: Scaling-up, is full national roll-out of LoCAL based on the results of the previous phases and lessons learned. LoCAL is gradually extended to all local governments, with domestic or international climate finance, and becomes the national system for channeling adaptation finance to the local level. Bhutan and Cambodia are in Phase III.

Since its global scale up in 2014, LoCAL has engaged 293 local governments in 14 countries representing over 11 million people. Since then, it delivered close to USD 27.9 million, mostly as grants and technical assistance to countries, and mobilized close to USD 94.2 million through LoCAL. During the same period, 1276 climate change adaptation interventions were finalized across 12 countries using grants.

Assistance Criteria

LoCAL uses the existing systems and processes (e.g. intergovernmental fiscal transfer systems) in the country to channel the PBCRGs to sub-national governments. Once the funds are transferred to the sub-national governments, they will use the existing public planning and budgeting processes to identify and select the projects to be financed with the PBCRGs. LoCAL will provide capacity building and technical assistance to sub-national governments to help them better assess climate risks and vulnerabilities and integrate climate change adaptation into their planning and budgeting processes – thus improving preparedness for, awareness of and resilience to climate change. The projects selected by local governments and communities are to be informed by local climate risk assessments and aligned with a menu of eligible investments (itself informed by national climate risk assessments, and aligned with NDCs and NAPs).



The size of the grants or PBCRGs will vary in each country. PBCRGs need to be large enough to provide an incentive, cover the additional costs of adaptation, and have an impact in terms of investments and service delivery in areas key to enhanced climate resilience. On the other hand, they must also be small enough to match the absorptive capacities of local governments and be fiscally sustainable and scalable. Funding availability also influences the size of grants, especially during the pilot phase.

Support Type

  • Grants
  • Technical Assistance


Project Stage

  • Local Government Capacity Building
  • Concept/design/scoping
  • Pre-feasibility
  • Feasibility
  • Implementation


  • Renewable Energy
  • Water, Sanitation, and Waste
  • Transportation/Mobility
  • Urban Public and Green Space
  • Energy Efficiency
  • Land Use and Nature-based Solutions
  • Adaptation and Resilience
Photo Credit: Lize Festers-