Poor people bear the brunt of climate change since they live in those regions most affected by fluctuating temperatures, sea level rise, flooding and drought. Far from behaving as victims, however, they use the assets and resources at their disposal to adapt and survive. Understanding Climate Change Adaptation combines studies from south Asia, Africa and Latin America. The analysis demonstrates that although communities' adaptation strategies may be varied and depend on local context, social networks play a pivotal role in accessing appropriate climate knowledge and resources and communicating useful approaches to other communities.
The key activities of reducing vulnerability, fostering resilience and developing the capacity to experiment and learn are combined as appropriate. Understanding Adaptation to Climate Change asks, how can agencies assist local communities adapting to change? By what mechanisms can communities make the most of emerging information? Can effective community-based approaches be scaled up?
Understanding Adaptation to Climate Change is essential reading for NGO practitioners, students and government and NGO policy makers who wish to gain an understanding of what adaptation means in theory and practice.
Prelims (Preface, Acknowledgements)
1. Introduction: understanding community-based adaptation
2. Erosion and flooding in northern Bangladesh
3. Changing seasons and flash flooding in the foothills of the Nepal Himalaya
4. Desert and floodplain adaptation in Pakistan
5. Increasing paddy salinity in coastal Sri Lanka
6. Increasing drought in arid and semiarid Kenya
7. Multiple pressures on pastoralism in semi-arid Niger
8. Declining water resources in Sudan's Red Sea coastal belt
9. Extreme weather in the Peruvian high Andes
10. Conclusion: community-based adaptation in practice
Back Matter (References, Index)
Jonathan Ensor is a Researcher for Practical Action working on the relationship between climate change and international development. Rachel Berger is climate change Policy Advisor with Practical Action.