eSwatini nationals: Assessment of Climate Change Impact on Water Resources in Eswatini

United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

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The Government of the Kingdom of Eswatini has ratified the Paris Agreement that seeks to hold the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2 °C above preindustrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 °C above preindustrial levels. In addition, Eswatini has submitted its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The NDC is considered as a policy document which has an overall objective of putting the country on a Low carbon climate resilient pathway and aimed at assisting the country to contribute towards the achievement of the global temperature goal.  As a developing country with about 69% of the population living on less than $1, the Nationally Determined Contribution for Eswatini to Paris Agreement on Climate change emphasizes adaptation measures while at the same time reducing greenhouse emissions by 20% by 2030 from the business as usual baseline of 2010. eSwatini’s development challenges are exacerbated by its vulnerability to external and climate-related shocks, including floods and droughts which negatively impact on health, food security and productive economic activity while disproportionately affecting the rural poor. Mitigation and adaptation measures are important given the strong role of the agriculture sector, as well as the large share of the population in rural areas relying on subsistence agriculture.  

The surface water resources of eSwatini are estimated at 4.5 km3/year with 42 percent originating from South Africa. The five main river systems in the country are the Komati, the Lomati, the Mbuluzi, the Usutu and the Ngwavuma. The Komati and the Lomati river systems are found in the north of the country and both originate in South Africa and flow out of eSwatini back into South Africa before entering Mozambique. The Mbuluzi River rises in eSwatini and flows into Mozambique. The Usutu River, together with major tributaries originate in South Africa, and flows out into Mozambique, forming the border between Mozambique and South Africa. The Ngwavuma River lies in the south of the country. It rises in eSwatini and flows into South Africa before entering Mozambique. The sixth river system contributing to surface water in eSwatini is the Pongola River, which is found on the South African side south of Swaziland. The Jozini dam, built on the South African side, floods some land on the eSwatini side and its water is available for use in eSwatini.   

Most recently, in 2015/16 eSwatini experienced a severe El Niño-induced drought, characterized by below normal rainfall, prolonged dry spells and above normal temperatures. The drought was the worst experienced by the country in 50 years, leading to a 30-40 percent drop in production of maize (the staple food crop), extremely low water levels in the main Hawane dam serving the capital, drying up of rural boreholes and forcing the closure of many schools (affecting nearly 200,000 students and teachers, in rural and urban areas).   

During the drought, persistent severe water shortages both in rural and urban areas (affecting many of the 300,000 people facing food shortages) caused the Government to ration water and many communities to rely on external water supply support. The drought had long-term impacts on ground water supply (of which 78 percent of the rural population depends on) due to the poor recharge of aquifers. Health facilities and schools experienced compromised service delivery or temporary closure due to lack of water, and an increase in the number of diarrhea cases was reported. Climate change in Swaziland is expected to lead to overall warming and drying, with a greater frequency and intensity of droughts as well as floods. The negative impacts on the agricultural and water sector are likely to be considerable.

Following COP-21, attention has turned from developing and submitting NDCs to revising and updating the NDCs for a more ambitious and inclusive effective implementation of the contributions. UNDP plays a central role in building countries’ capacity to strengthen and implement NDCs, given its previous INDC support experience, its technical expertise in related areas, and its on-the-ground presence in over 170 countries.  As part of enhancing climate action in Eswatini in line with her commitment to Paris Agreement,  Government has embarked on the NDC revision process under the Climate Action Enhancement Package (CAEP) with support from development partners that include, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), Commonwealth Secretariat, Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), World Resources Institute (WRI); and NDC Partnership Support Unit.  UNDP through its Climate Promise Initiative is supporting Eswatini to revise her NDC commitment including; i) Building Political Will, whole of government and whole of society ownership; ii) Review, align and update existing targets, policies and measures; iii) Incorporate new sectors and/or GHGs; iv) Assess costs and Investment opportunities for attaining targets; v) establish mechanisms to monitor progress & strengthen transparency; and vi) Preparing the revised NDC document.

It is against this background that UNDP is seeking a competent consultant to support Ministry of Tourism and Environmental Affairs in collaboration with other NDC Partnership members undertake situation analysis of climate change impact on water resources including water usage to enhance adaptation ambition in the NDC.





Scope of work

The Climate Change Impact on Water Resources Assessment Consultant will perform, the following tasks:

  • Review relevant literature on water resources and how they have been impacted by climate change
  • Conduct gender inclusive stakeholder consultations
  • Develop scenarios for water resources under different conditions to support designing of interventions for sustainable water resources management and climate change interventions.
  • Review capacity needs of different players in the water resources space to identify and recommend capacity development programme for climate smart water resources management
  • Make presentations during NDC review sessions inter alia to sensitize and guide participants on climate change impact on water resources for a more sustainable water resources management programme in the context of climate change and its effects.

Outputs and Deliverables

  • Inception Report detailing a workplan and the methodologies/processes to be used in performing the tasks in the scope of work
  • Assessment Report for the water resources and the effects of climate change
  • A detailed final report covering outputs for all the tasks in the scope of the assignment

Duty Station, Institutional Arrangement:

 Duty station: Home based 

  • The Climate Change Impact on Water Resources Assessment Consultant will be given access to relevant information necessary for execution of the tasks under this assignment;
  • Travel within Eswatini may be requested;
  • The Climate Change Impact on Water Resources Assessment Consultant will carry out his/her tasks under the overall guidance of the Ministry of Tourism and Environmental Affairs;
  • The Climate Change Impact on Water Resources Assessment Consultant will be reporting to the UNDP Deputy Resident Representative and Climate Change Coordinator in the Ministry of Tourism and Environmental Affairs.



Corporate Competencies:

  • Demonstrate commitment to UNDP’s mission, vision and values.
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability.
  • Highest standards of integrity, discretion and loyalty

Functional Competencies:

  • Substantive experience conducting research and analysis in the area of climate change and water resources management.
  • Demonstrated substantive experience in working with developing countries and undertaking policy and programmatic work in the area of expertise mentioned above.
  • Demonstrated experience in development of climate change mitigation and adaptation water resources in developing countries.
  • Demonstrated experience working on water resources with national and local governments and civil society organizations.
  • Experience or strong familiarity with the work of Government of Eswatini, academia, UNDP and/or other multilateral, bilateral and civil society development partners.
  • Excellent analytical, writing, and communications skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to work in an independent manner.
  • Demonstrated project management experience including administrative and logistical is preferable.




  • An advanced degree in Integrated Water Resources Management, Environmental Sciences, Engineering or any other related field.


  • Work experience for at least 5 years in climate change adaptation and mitigation in the water sector.
  • Proven ability to develop analytical reports on water and climate change adaptation and mitigation;
  • Demonstrated understanding of climate change;
  • Experience in designing and facilitating capacity building processes;
  • Ability to produce quality reports
  • An understanding of monitoring and evaluation systems is an asset.

Language Requirement:

  • Proficiency in written and spoken English and Siswati.

Additional Information:

Scope of Price Proposal and Schedule of Payments

The Financial Proposal shall specify a total lump-sum amount all-inclusive; and payment shall be in installments based on specific and measurable (qualitative and quantitative) specified in the TOR.

Application Procedure

Interested individuals must submit the following documents /information to demonstrate their qualification, experience and suitability to undertake the assignment. All supporting documents (ad) must be part of the detailed CV and uploaded as one document 

a) Duly accomplished Letter of Confirmation of Interest and Availability using the template provided by UNDP; 

b) Personal CV or P11, indicating all experience from similar projects, as well as the contact details email and telephone number) of the Candidate and at least three (3) professional references; 

c) Brief description of why the individual considers him/herself as the most suitable for the assignment; and a methodology on how they will approach and complete the assignment 

d) Financial Proposal that indicates the all-inclusive fixed total contract price supported by a breakdown of costs, as per template provided. If an Offeror is employed by an organization/company/institution, and he/she expects his/her employer to charge a management fee in the process of releasing him/her to UNDP under Reimbursable Loan Agreement (RLA), the Offeror must indicate at this point, and ensure that all such costs are duly incorporated in the financial proposal submitted to UNDP

Incomplete proposals may not be considered. The short-listed candidates may be contacted, and the successful candidate will be notified.  All applications must be made on-line.

Criteria for Selection of the Best Offer

The best evaluated offers will be based on a combined Scoring method –qualifications and methodology will be weighted a max. of 70% and combined with the price offer which will be weighted a max of 30%.






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