Browse by Theme: Climate Change

Climate change impacts involve three defining features that are not always a part of other development challenges: they are diverse, long-term and not easily predictable. Adapting to these three traits is difficult because they require making contextspecific and forward-looking decisions regarding a variety of local climate impacts and vulnerabilities when the future is highly uncertain. The 2010 World Development Report: Development and Climate Change, echoes this by stating that, “Climate change adds an additional source of unknowns for decision makers to manage” and planners must accept “uncertainty as inherent to the climate change problem.

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The Adaptation Coalition Toolkit was developed to promote the World Bank’s strategic priority to empower people by creating more inclusive, cohesive, and accountable societies in the face of climate change. The framework for this Toolkit was developed from testing its implementation over a two-year period in 24 Latin American case study communities in five countries. The results from this study are presented in the companion publication Building Community Resilience to Climate Change: Testing the Adaptation Coalition Framework in Latin America produced by the World Bank’s Social Development Unit of the Latin America and Caribbean Region. The methodology has been refined and strengthened through the case study process with this Toolkit as the final product.

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Over 40 participants from 12 organisations and institutions working on climate change adaptation in Africa participated in a learning workshop on Gender and Community-Based Adaptation (CBA) in Ghana. The event was organized and supported by the Adaptation Learning Programme in Africa (ALP), implemented by CARE International in Mozambique, Kenya, Niger, Ghana, and brought together gender and climate change practitioners from these four countries, France, Denmark, Austria and Morocco.

Through the workshop and community visits to Farfar, Saamini, Zambulgu and Kugri communities in Northern and Upper East regions, the participants deliberated on the gender related issues that impact on successful adaptation to climate change and the methods available for mainstreaming gender into CBA.

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A snapshot of the climate change impact on the Munyo Yaya community.

Abdi Turura is a 56 year old man from the Munyo Yaya (commonly referred to as Munyo) ethnic group in Balich, a settlement 45kms north of Garissa town in Northern Kenya. He is married to three wives and has 17 children, 8 sons and 9 daughters. Abdi lives with his family on Baad farm, a ‘community’ farm owned by a group of 47 members (10 women and 37 men).

The community has traditionally relied on small scale rain fed agriculture for subsistence. ‘However, now times have changed’ points out Abdi, ‘we used to have two planting seasons in a year, we call it ‘ganna’ and ‘hagaya’ (long and short rain seasons respectively). This has recently changed to either one season or none at all in a year.’

With the change in the rainfall patterns, it has become difficult for the Munyo community to practice rain fed agriculture.

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Anabig Ayaab is a 50 year old farmer from Tariganga, Garu-Tempane District, in the Upper East Region of Ghana. Tariganga is in the dry savannah zone of northern Ghana where vegetative cover is sparse, especially during the dry season. The village and surrounding landscape is flat and dusty at this time, with the few trees that still stand, including shea-nut used for cosmetics and dawadawa, a local medicinal tree, shedding their leaves. The landscape will become increasingly green with the June rains. These rains will only last until October when the dry season, with varying temperatures and wind conditions, will set in again and last for the remainder of the year, guaranteeing a hungry period from March or April until the next rains.

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Borders, in the pastoral context of the drylands of the Horn of Africa with high levels of human and animal mobility, have little relevance and meaning to the populations living in border areas in Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia, Somalia and Somaliland. As international borders do not follow ethnic or eco-system lines, pastoral populations move freely across them. As a result, in the Horn of Africa’s border areas, it is essential to take these cross border movements and dynamics into consideration when implementing drought risk reduction programs as what happens on one side of the border affects the other.

Although cross border programming maybe across intra-country borders; ecosystem borders or ethnic borders, the discussion here is focused on international borders.

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Human and natural systems are influenced by climate variability and hazards, though the negative impacts are most severely felt in developing countries. Increased climate variability, such as the occurrence of more frequent droughts and storms and more erratic or intense rainfall patterns, is associated with climatic change. Such climate change effects will intensify significantly in the future.

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