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Waiting for the Water to Come? – Poverty Reduction in Times of Climate Change

Authors:
  • Leibniz Center for Tropical Marine Research

Abstract and Figures

It is the poor who suffer most under the impact of climate change. They are often directly dependent on the natural environment and have few options to escape the consequences of change such as poor harvests, water shortages and illness. Their survival strategies and livelihoods are endangered, in some cases acutely. Climate change makes poverty reduction more difficult. First, it is harder to help people out of poverty when conditions are increasingly uncertain: but climate projections are often uncertain, making it difficult to assess the effectiveness of adaptation measures. Second, there is the danger that climate change will reduce more people to poverty, increasing the numbers of those who need assistance while the resources of those tackling poverty are limited. This paper presents the consequences of climate change, the ways climate change is anticipated to develop in future and aspects which make the poor particularly vulnerable. The focus is on the measures people themselves can take to maintain and adapt their livelihood strategies to the changing climate conditions. We show how poverty reduction is linked to climate change, the fundamental goals and criteria of poverty alleviation and concrete examples of how it can include adaptation to climate change impacts. Various case studies from Tanzania, India and Indonesia illustrate in detail how both people’s own adaptation strategies and the work of organizations like CARE can constitute successful reactions to the consequences of climate change. Finally, conclusions are drawn in the form of recommendations for organizations like CARE.
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Waiting for the water to come?

Dr. Fabian Scholtes, ZEF
Dr. Anna-Katharina Hornidge (Case study Indonesia), ZEF
EDITOR:
CARE DEUTSCHLAND-LUXEMBURG, CENTER FOR DEVELOPMENT RESEARCH (ZEF) 2009
Waiting for the water to come?


Foreword 4
  Abstract 6
I. Introduction: climate change and poverty reduction are inseparable 7
II. Climate change 9
 II.1 Climaticeffectsofglobalwarming 9
 II.2 Physicaleffectsbeyondclimatechange 11
 II.3 Consequencesandextremeeffectsofclimatechange:feedbackandtippingelements 13
 II.4 Economicandhealthimpacts 14
III. What climate change impacts are anticipated in future? 15
 III.1 Globalprojections:impacts 18
IV. Climate change and poverty reduction 18
 IV.1 Climatechange,povertyandpovertyreduction:howaretheyrelated? 18
 IV.2 Adaptingtotheimpactsofclimatechange 21
 IV.3 Supportingresilience 22
 IV.4 Criteriaforsuccessfuladaptationmeasures 23
 IV.5 Measures 25
V. Poverty reduction and strategies to secure livelihoods: case studies and lessons learned 27
 V.1 SmallholderfarmersinTanzania:specialisingandreducingdependenceonagriculture 27
 V.2 MicroinsuranceinIndia:thepoorprotectthemselvesagainstrisks 29
VI. Case study West Timor, Indonesia 31
 VI.1 Impactsofclimatechangein(East)Indonesia 31
 VI.2 Toineke,WestTimor:economyandsociety 31
 VI.3 Perceptiblelocalimpactsofclimatechange 32
 VI.4 Copingandadaptationstrategies 35
 VI.5 Toineke:anexampleoflifeinpovertyinconditionsofclimatechange 41
VII. Recommendations: poverty reduction in times of climate change 42
  Bibliography 44
 Imprint 46


limatechangeisaglobal riskforhumanity,asUlrichBeck, well-knownGerman sociologist and
globalizationexpert,hassaid;itwilldetermineourpresentandfutureonascalenotyetforeseen.
Itisprimarily causedbythecountriesoftheNorth,yetthecountries of the Southaremoreseverely
impactedbysomeoftheconsequences.Thisdisproportionateeffectispartlyduetothefactthatlarge
numb ers of pe ople in d eveloping countr ies are highly depend ent on th e natural  environment. A s a
result,thepopulationswhobearthebruntofparticularrisksarethosewhohaveneithercausedclimate
change, nor benefitedfrom the achievementswhich contribute to it. Poorpopulations in developing
countriesareforcedtoreacttoenvironmentalproblemssuchasdroughtsandflooding,watershortages
andchangingrainyseasons:problemswhichtheycanhardlypredictandwhicharecausinganincreasing
senseofuncertainty.Allthisleadstoagrowingneedforinterdisciplinaryandtransdisciplinaryresearch,
whosefindingscanprovideabasisforplanning.
TheCenterforDevelopmentResearch(ZEF)attheUniversityofBonncarriesoutinterdisciplinaryresearch,
aimingtocontributetopovertyreductionandsustainabledevelopment.TheZEF’sgoalistofindlocal
solutions to problemscaused globally andtocombine current researchfindings withthe experience
oflocalpeople.Thispaperfocusesonpreciselythisintegrationofinterdisciplinaryresearchinadevel-
opment context (ZEF) and pract ical, poverty- oriented cooperative development (C ARE).It ef fectively
presentsthecurrentstateofresearchonclimatechangeandpovertyreductionandcombinesthiswith
thelocalknowledgeandinnovationsdevelopedbythepeopleofEastIndonesia.
CAREandZEFaimtopointthewayforfutureresearchincollaborationwithorganisationswhichtackle
poverty.Onlyifpracticalandscientific,localandcross-borderknowledgecanbebroughttogetherwill
theinevitableadaptationstoclimatechangeimpactshaveachanceofsuccess.
Prof.Dr.SolvayGerke
DirectorZEF,DepartmentofPoliticalandCulturalChange

C

C

limat e change  is tak ing pla ce world wide; i ts impa cts ar e direc t and se vere – es pecial ly for th e
poorest,whoareleastresponsiblefor thecauses.Climatechange acceleratedbyhumanactivity
isalteringtherhythmofnaturalweathereventssuchasdroughts,floodsandhurricanes.Itisgenerally
assumedthatclimatechangeisexacerbatingpoverty,butwhatistheevidenceforthisassumption?How
exactlyare thesephenomenarelated and whatdoes that mean for an organisationlike CARE, which
combatspovertyworldwide?
Thispaperaimstoprovide anoverview ofthestateofthedebate onpovertyreductioninthe faceof
climatechange.Theauthorshaveinvestigatedthelinksbetweenpovertyandclimatechangeinpractice
andexaminedtheissuesinthelightofacasestudyinIndonesia.Theyhavedeliberatelyselectedacoun-
trywhichisbothparticularlyaffectedbyclimatechangeandalsooneofthosecausingglobalwarming.
Thefindingsareclear:climatechangedoesmaketacklingpovertymoredifficult.Anditseemsthatmore
andmorepeopleareindangerofslippingintopovertyduetochangingenvironmentalconditions.
Thecentralthemeofthispaperisthehumanitariantaskofsecuringpeople’slivelihoods,sinceindividuals
andtheirimmediateenvironmentarethelowestcommondenominatorofglobalclimatechangeandits
consequences.Allovertheworld,inAsia,AfricaorLatinAmerica,thepoorestofthepoorareaffected
by climate change andare forced to adapt to the consequences. Their success will dependpartly on
theirknowledge,theircapitalandontheassistancetheyreceive.ForanorganisationsuchasCARE,the
challengeofsustainablepovertyreductionintheeraofclimatechangewilldemandallourstrength.
CAREsupportsmillionsaroundtheworldwhoaresufferingtheeffectsofclimatechange.Forthem,itis
aquestionofsurvival.Thisdailyexperienceshouldremindusthatclimatechangehasahumanface.
Dr.AntonMarkmiller
NationalDirector,CAREDeutschland-Luxemburg


Itisthe poorwho suffermost underthe impactof climate
change.Theyareoftendirectlydependentonthenaturalen-
vironmentandhavefewoptionstoescapetheconsequences
ofchangesuchaspoorharvests,watershortagesandillness.
Theirsurvivalstrategiesandlivelihoods are endangered,in
somecasesacutely.
Climatechangemakespovertyreductionmoredifcult.First,
itishardertohelppeopleoutofpovertywhenconditionsare
increasinglyuncertain:butclimateprojectionsareoftenun-
certain,makingitdifculttoassessthe effectivenessofad-
aptationmeasures.Second,thereisthedangerthatclimate
change willreduce morepeople to poverty,increasing the
numbersofthosewhoneedassistancewhiletheresourcesof
thosetacklingpovertyarelimited.
Thispaperpresentstheconsequencesofclimatechange,the
waysclimatechangeisanticipatedtodevelopinfutureand
aspectswhichmakethepoorparticularlyvulnerable.Thefo-
cusisonthemeasurespeoplethemselvescantaketomain-
tain and adapt their livelihood strategies to the changing
climateconditions.
Weshowhowpovertyreductionislinkedtoclimatechange,
thefundamentalgoalsandcriteriaofpovertyalleviationand
concrete examples of how it can include adaptati on tocli -
mate change impacts. Various case studies from Tanzania,
India and Indonesia illustrate in detail how both people’s
ownadaptationstrategiesandtheworkoforganisationslike
CAREcanconstitutesuccessfulreactionstotheconsequences
ofclimatechange.Finally,conclusionsaredrawnintheform
ofrecommendationsfororganisationslikeCARE.
RECOMMENDATIONS FOR ORGANISATIONS ON
POVERTY REDUCTION
 Povertyreductionshouldprioritizeadaptationtochang-
ing climatic conditions (not merely coping with them)
andbebasedonexistinglocalstrategies.
 Local knowledge of relations between climate change
eventsandlocaladaptationoptionsshouldbesystemati-
callyincluded;localpopulationsshould alsobeencour-
agedtodeveloptheirknowledge.
 However, existing practices as well as new strategies
should be crit ically examined applying ve criteria (ef-
fectiveness, exibility, fairness, efciency and sustain-
ability).
 Tackling poverty should promote awareness of and in-
dependentlocaladaptationtothoseclimatechangeim-
pactswhichhavesofarattractedlessattention.
 Theactualimpactsofclimatechangeareextremelyhard
topredict. This fact should not beignored andcurrent
projectionstakenas“certain”whenplanningadaptation
measures.
 Theurgencyofadaptationtoclimatechangeshouldnot
beusedtojustifymeasures(suchasforcedresettlement)
withouttheagreementofthelocalpopulation.
 Poverty reduct ion measures should be realistic and or-
ganizationsshouldconcentratetheirenergies,aimingto
preservethepoorestpeople’sgeneralresilienceandca-
pacitytoact.
 Profound,broad-basedandcriticalanalysisoftheextent
ofclimatechangeimpactsandadaptationmeasuresises-
sential.Common recommendationssuchas diversifying
incomehavesometimesprovedunproductiveorcounter-
productiveintacklingpoverty.


THE POOR ARE PARTICULARLY AFFECTED BY CLIMATE
CHANGE AND VULNERABLE TO ITS IMPACTS
Thepoorarebothparticularlyexposedtotheeffectsofcli-
matechange and havefewresourcestocombatit.Thisisa
frequenttopicintheclimatechangediscourse.Butwhatex-
actlydoesitmean?Andhowdoesthisfactaffecttheworkof
organisationswhichtacklepoverty?Thesethoughtswerethe
startingpointforthispaper.Theauthorsassumethefollow-
inghypotheses:
I. Climate change and poverty reduction are inseparable
Howfarclimatechangeanditsconsequencesactuallyaffect
individual lives depends on how vu lnerable they are to its
impacts.Severalfactorsinuencethis:
 Globalclimatechangeimpactsvaryaccordingtolocality.
Theimpactonpeopledepends onlocal climaticeffects
such as rising temperatures or changing precipitation
patterns.Local climatic changes such as heatwaves can
haveanimmediate,directimpactonthepopulation.
 Localecologicalandsocialsystemsarenotequallysensi-
tivetolocalclimaticchanges.Alterationstotheenviron-
mentaffect peopledirectly:if the ground driesoutbe-
cause of rising temperatures,agricultural production is
moredifcult.Therobustnessofthelocalinfrastructure
isalsoasignicantfactor–forexample,whetherroads
canwithstandheavyrainfall.Theseeffectscanreinforce
eachotherandcreateaviciouscircle.
 Theextenttowhichindividualsareactuallyharmedby
these effects depends on how exposed they areto the
consequences(e.g.howdependent they are on agricul-
ture)and howthey resist, cope with or adapt to them.
These coping oradaptationcapacities may include fac-
torssuch as whetherthe localpopulation has accessto
thetechnologyrequiredtomaintainagriculture,wheth-
er they have sufcient cash to impor t food instead or
whethertheycanutilizeothersourcesofincome.
Tosumup,thegreater thescale oflocal climatechangeef-
fectsforthepopulationandthelesstheyareabletoadaptto
theimpacts,thegreaterthedamagethatcanbewroughtby
climatechangeontheirlives.Thepooroftenliveinparticu-
larlyvulnerableareas(regionswithextremeclimates,coastal
areas,regions affectedbyregularriverooding).Thelikeli-
hoodofbeingaffectedbyaclimatedisasterisaroundeighty
timeshigherin developingcountriesthaninmembercoun-
triesoftheOECD(HDR2008:20/21).Inaddition,itistheru-
ralpoorwhoselivelihoodsaredirectlydependentonnatural
resourcesandwhoaremostaffectedbyclimatechange.
Climatechangeisnotthesolecauseofpoverty,butitworks
withotherfactorstointensifytheviciouscirclewhichtraps
peopleinpoverty.Thismakesithardertohelppeopleoutof
thedownwardpovertyspiral.Itisalsolikelythatmorepeo-
plewillfallintopoverty ifclimatechangeunderminestheir
current livelihood strategy. The Stern report (Stern 2006)
statesthat145to220millionpeopleinAfricaandSouthAsia
couldbecomepoorby2100.“Climatechangeisundermining
internationaleffortstoreducepoverty“(HDR2008:10).
Thesetwofactors,theincreaseinnumbersofthepoordueto
climatechangeandtheincreaseddifcultyofassistingthem,
reinforceeachother;thisiswhyclimatechangehasasigni-

                                      
cantinuenceonaidorganisations’work.Thispaperdenes
climatechangemoreprecisely,tracesitsphysicalandsocio-
economiceffectsonpovertyandexamineswhatthismeans
foreffortstotackle poverty.Weshow how climate change
inuencespeople’s opportunities andlivelihood strategies,
soindicatinghowaidorganisationscanreacttoalterations
causedbyclimatechange.Thisisillustrated byexamplesof
howpeoplehaveattemptedtoadapttoclimatechange.The
casestudyofthevillageToinekeshowsverypracticalstrate-
giesandindividual cases and reveals how aid and develop-
mentorganisationscancontributetothereductionofpover-
ty.Thisprovidesabasisforrecommendationsforsuccessful
povertyreductioninthemoredifcultconditionscausedby
climatechange.
Anoutlinepapercannotcoverallaspectsofthetopic.Migra-
tionandconictovernaturalresourceshavebeendiscussed
indetaile.g.in the German Government’sAdvisory Council
onGlobalChange’sreport (WBGU2007)andtherefore are
not dealt with here. Technological advances such as early
warningsystemsarementionedbutnotdescribedindetail.
Thecasestudieswereselectedinviewofthefocusonliveli-
hoodstrategiesandpeople’sadaptationmeasures,especially
thoseofthepoor.




II. Climate change
CONSEQUENCES AND PROJECTIONS OF CLIMATE
CHANGE
Firstofall,thetermclimatechangereferstotherisingatmos-
phericandoceantemperaturesobservedinrecentdecades.
The global climate has alwaysbeen subject tochange, but
todaytheemissionofgreenhousegasescausedbyhumanac-
tivity–inparticularcarbondioxide,butalsomethaneandni-
trousoxide-reinforcesthenaturalgreenhouseeffectandso
causeglobalwarming.In2004,31%oftheseemissionswere
causedbyagricultureandforestry,40%byindustry,transport
andbuildingsand26%byenergysupply(IPCC2007c:29).The
natural greenhouse effect produces an air temperature at
groundlevelofapprox.15°C,thusenablinglifeasweknow
ittoexist. The additionalanthropogenic greenhouseeffect
iscausingadangerousincreaseinthistemperature.Thisoc-
cursbecauseastheconcentrationofgreenhousegasesinthe
atmosphereincreases, they areheatedby the earth’sinfra-
redradiation andthusproduce more radiation themselves.
This“atmosphericradiation“isreecteddowntoreachthe
earth’ssurfaceinadditiontothesun’senergy,soheatingthe
earthadditionally(Philiponaetal.2004).
II.1.CLIMATIC EFFECTS OF GLOBAL WARMING
Theinitialimpactofclimatechangeisthereforeglobalwarm-
ing.Thisislinkedtoprocesseswherebyclimatechangeaffects
thenaturalenvironmentandthehumanpopulation,particu-
larlyincausingalterationstoweatherpatterns.Climate,inthe
senseofthe“averageweather”inaregion,comprisesrstof
alltemperature,precipitationandwindconditions.
Not only are average air temperatures rising; temperature
extremesmay alsobecomemore frequent.Thereare more
extremely hot days, heat waves occur more often and
extremely cold perio ds will probably occur less frequently.
Risingtemperaturesarealreadyaffectingpeopledirectly,for
examplethosewithcoronaryorbloodpressureproblems.The
poorinhotcountriesareparticularlyaffectedandvulnerable;
they usually have no access to preventive technology
such as air conditioning. They are often malnourished or
undernourishedandcannotcopewiththeheat.
The indirect consequences of r ising temperatures can take
variousforms.Therhythmoftheseasonsalters,sothewarmer
seasons s tart earlie r and last lon ger. In many  regions, this
iscoupled with changes in precipitationpatterns,resulting
inlongerdryperiodsandleadingtomorewatershortages,
curt ailment of grow ing seasons  and reduced har vests. T he
people of Toineke, West Timor, are confronted w ith these
effects, as the case study shows. Geographically, climate
zones and thus vegetation zones are shifting; for example,
previouslytropicalareasarenowthreatenedwithentirelynew
regionalclimates.Theactualadvantagesanddisadvantages
thismay bringtothelocalpopulationareoftenimpossible
toestimate.However,itisalreadyclearthatthereplacement
of forest by savannah and savannah by desert will cause
particul ar problems for people whose livelihood is directly
dependentonnaturalresources.Thiscanbeseeninthearid
zonesofsouthernAfrica(Scholz/Bauer2006).
Climatechangealsoleadstochangingprecipitationpatterns.



 
Inawarmerclimate,globalprecipitationquantitiesincrease,
as rising temperatures cause more evaporation of water,
whichthenfallsasrain.Iftheraindoesnotfallasquicklyas
neartheequator,cloudscarrythewaterintohigherlatitudes.
ThiseffecthasreducedrainfallintheSahelregion,aroundthe
Mediterranean,insouthernAfricaandinpartsofsouthAsia
(IPCC2007a).Thisisleadingtoashiftinareasofrainfall,so
subtropicalregionsarebecomingdrierandhigherlatitudes
wetter.Rainfallwillincreasinglytendtobelessfrequentbut
more intensive. There will be fewer days wi thr ainfall, but
heavyrainfallwillbemorecommonanddryperiodslonger.
Thiscanleadtoextremeweatherconditionssuchasooding
orhighriverlevelsduetoheavyrainfall,orontheotherhand
todroughts.
These effec ts are very different in different locations. The
likelihood of drought is increasing in the Mediterranean,
in southern Africa and in the Brazilian Amazon region in
particular.However,inareaswhererainfallisincreasing,the
amountofsurfacewateravailabletothepopulationwillalso
decrease–becauseofhighlevelsofevaporation.Increasing
rainfallalso tends tooccurinthe rainy season,whichdoes
notimprove water availability in dry periods(Arnell 2004).
Thepooraremostaffected:theyarethersttoloseaccessto
reducedwatersupplies,arelessabletotreatcontaminated
waterandarethusmorevulnerabletodisease.
Thesechangingweatherpatternsliterallydeprivepeopleof
their economic base. Firstly, the dried- out ground is more
subject to erosion; heavier rainfall also contributes to this
effect. Deforestation and overgrazing make the land even
more vulnerable. Secondly, soil degradation will increase,
forexamplethroughsalination,inareaswhereirrigationis
overusedtocompensateformorerapidevaporation(WBGU
2007:74).Agriculturalproductionwillfallasaresult.People
who depend on subsistence farming will be particularly
affected,buttheurbanpoorwillalsofacerisingfoodprices
whentheamountofagriculturallandisreduced.
Changingprecipitationpatternsareveryhardtopredict.This
istypicalforthecentralproblem climatechange causes for
povertyreduction:ontheonehand,futuredevelopmentsare
predeterminedbecauseprocesseshavebeenirrevocablyset
in motion and people must cop e with them. On the other
hand, the future is dangerously uncertain, since previous
knowledge,forexampleaboutwateravailability,isnolonger
applicabletothefuture.Knowledgeofthenewsituationisstill
beinggatheredandisnotcertain;thepeopleaffectedoften
lackawarenessoftheglobalprocessesinvolved.Thisreduces
theircapacityfor action. Previously,variations occurredon
alimitedscaleandcouldbecopedwithbymeasuressuchas



 


watermanagement. However,climatechange haschanged
the scale to such an extent that these coping mechanisms
arenolongersufcient(Millyetal. 2008).Thecombination
ofinevitablityandunpredictabilitymakeitmoredifcultto
plan for the future. The people of Toineke, Indonesia, for
example, do not know whether the ooding will recur in
future,sotheychoosecheaper provisionalmeasuresrather
thanlong-term adaptations. Instead ofraising their houses
onstiltsasalong term solution,theysimplyraise sleeping
andcookingaccommodationandanimalquarters;however,
thisstillleavesthemvulnerabletoooding.Thecoreofthe
problemisthereforethe“deteriorationoftheplanningbase
inthenaturalenvironment”(WBGU2007:70)–bothforthe
people’sownlivelihoodstrategiesandfortheorganizations
workingtoreducepoverty.
Discussions about wind focus above all on the increasing
frequencyandintensityoftropicalhurricanescausedbyrising
seatemperatures.However,itisdifculttoestablishaclear
relationshipbetweenclimatechangeandincreasingnumbers
of storms (WMO 2006). Future temperature increases are
likelyto boosttherisein numbers ofstorms(WBGU2007),
butsomestudiesdisputeeventhispoint(Knutsonetal.2008).
Thepopulationsofendangeredcoastalareasareincreasing,
sothestormswillhaveincreasingsocietalimpacts.
II.2 PHYSICAL EFFECTS BEYOND CLIMATE CHANGE
Risingtemperaturesaffectnotonlytheclimatebutalsoother
systems,suchastheoceans.Thebest-knowneffectistherise
insealevels,causedbytwofactors:
the expansion of the water as it heats up and the increas-
ingquantityofwaterasglaciersandinlandicesheetsmelt.
Thisprocessendangerslow-lyingislands,coastalregionsand
riverdeltasinparticular.Floodserodethecoastline,damage
infrastructure and alter groundwater and drinking water,
sometimes als o causing disease through water contamina-
tion.Thiswillinevitablyaffectlargenumbersofpeople,be-
cause approx. 70% ofthe world’spopulationlive inthese
areas.Thepoorwillfeeltheeffectsevenmore,becausethey
tendtoliveinlessshelteredareasininadequatehousingand
aredependentonnaturalresourceswhicharedestroyedby
ooding. Even if they are able to move away from the af-
fected areas, they lose their livelihoods and do not always
succeedin nding newlivelihoodsevenincities(IISD2003:
14).An annualsea levelriseof only40 centimeters would
oodtheregionswhicharehometo95millionpeople,afth
ofwhomliveinsouth-eastAsia(Wassmannetal.2004).
Risingocean temperatures enablethe seas to absorbsome
oftheexcesscarbondioxideintheatmosphere;theyactas
carbonsinks,thuscounteractingclimatechange.However,as
theCO2isabsorbedbythewater,theoceansbecomemore
acidic,endangeringthecoralreefswhichatpresentsheltera
richvarietyofmarinelifeandtheminuteseacreaturesatthe
bottomoftheoceanfoodchains(WBGU2006).
Oceancurrentsarealsochanging.Uptonowtherehavebeen
fearsthattheconstantcirculationprovidedbytheNorthAt-
lanticDriftmightbeweakenedoreveninterruptedbyclimate
change.Thiswouldcausea massive drop in temperature in
western and northern Europe. However, it is also possible
thatoceancurrentswillbecomestronger(Toggweiler/Russel
2008). Both acidi cation and changing currents affec t sh-
 
ery,another areawhere thepoor arethe rst to suffer,as
their small boats do not allow them to follow the remain-
ing sh reserves. In the end, climate change w ill affect all
ecosystems.Ahugelossofbiodiversityislikely,thoughthis
effect w ill also vary from place to place. In polar regions,
warmingcouldincreasebiodiversity(Weller2007:1017).The
increasedspeedof change inbiodiversity,especiallyextinc-
tions,canunbalanceecosystems.Thisaffectsnotonlynature
lovers,butthewholeofhumanity,sincewearealldepend-
entonthesesystems.

BOX 1: CASCADE EFFECTS:
A DAM BURST SCENARIO
Apaper bytheFeinsteinInternationalCenter(2008)illus-
tratesthecascadeeffectwithadisasterscenarioinwhich
global warmin g causes the Tibet an glaciers to me lt. The
water combines with extreme rainfall to ll the Three
GorgesDamsothatthewatertriggersseismicactivity.The
earthquakesandwater pressure break thedam,ooding
citiesdownriverwith2.5millioninhabitants.Politicalun-
restfollows;investorswithdraw;theresultisaneconomic
crisis etc.Attheend of thecascade, 1 millionpeopleare
dead,4milliondisplacedandtheeconomiccostrunsinto
hundredsofbillionsofUSdollars.
Climate change also lies behind less dramatic chains of
eventswhichalso have disastrous effects, e.g.failedhar-
vests,leadingtomigrationofworkers,increasingpopula-
tionpressureinthecitiesanddepopulationofruralareas.
Thismaycausemorepressureonurbaninfrastructureand
thecollapseoftheruraleconomy.


 
Otherconsequenceswhichaffectpoorercountriesinparticu-
lararethe reductionofmonsoonrainfallinIndiaandWest
AfricaortheincreasingfrequencyandseverityoftheElNiño
phenomenon, which causes various effects including ex-
tremelyheavyrainfallinthecountriesontheeasternPacic
rim(Lentonetal.2008).
II.3 CONSEQUENCES AND EXTREME EFFECTS
OF CLIMATE CHANGE: FEEDBACK AND TIPPING
ELEMENTS
Risingtemperaturesdue toclimatechangenotonlycausedi-
rectalterationsintheweatherortheoceans.Feedbackeffects
also occur, where climate change impacts themselves affect
theclimate,oftenreinforcingtheeffects.
Forexample,themeltingoftheArcticicecapmeansthatless
solar energy is reected ba ck into space, so increasing at-
mospheric temperature. The ice b ecomes sea water, which
isdarker,absorbs more solarenergy,becomes warmer and
causestheicetomeltfaster–negativefeedback,infact.And
ifthehugemethane reserveslockedasgashydratesinthe
Siberianpermafrostordeepintheoceanshouldbereleased
by climate change, they will give the greenhouse effect a
massiveboost.
Theconsequencesaffectnotjusttheglobalclimatebutalso
havesocietaleffects.Achangeintheweathercantriggeran
uncontrollablecascadeofeconomicandsocietaleffects(see
box1).Oneofthedifcultieswithcascadeeffectsisthatitis
oftenunclearwhat willhappen next.Simultaneouseffects,
whereseveraleventsoccuratonetime,areanotherproblem.
Ifa heatwaveand ooding occursimultaneously, a society
maynotbeabletocopewiththesubsequentdoubledisrup-
tionofwaterreserves.
Climate change impacts are not all gradual: they can also
triggerdevelopmentswhichaltertheglobalsystemabruptly
anddrastically.Theclimatesystemhastippingpointswhere
eventsachieve anuncontrollable momentum; for example,
theAmazon rain forestwill dry out irreversibly once ithas
reached a certain threshold; the North Atlantic Drift may
weaken;theGreenland icesheetwillmeltirreversibly once
certaintemperatureshavebeenreached(WBGU2007:77ff).

 


 
II.4 ECONOMIC AND HEALTH IMPACTS
Theclimatechangeeffectsdescribedimpactthepoorinpar-
ticular.Around60–70%ofthepoorworldwideliveinrural
areas,mainly fromagriculture.This isthe economic sector
mostaffected(seeFig. 1, from:HDR2008:23).Subsistence
farmersaremostendangerediftheyhavenoalternativein-
comesources.
IItisimpossibletosayatpresenthowfarothereconomicsec-
torswillbeaffected(WBGU2007:75).Itisforeseeablethat
long-term energydemands willincrease as rising tempera-
turesleadtoincreasedcoolingrequirements,whichwillnot
be entirely compensated for by reduced heating d emands.
An upsurge in energy prices w ill have a corresponding ef-
fect on effor ts to reduce poverty. Extreme weather events
willalsoaffecttheinsuranceindustry,withconsequencesfor
attemptstogivethepooraccesstomicroinsurances,tohelp
themsafeguardthemselvesagainstlossesduetotheweather
(seealsothecasestudyonIndia,page29).Tourismmayalso
beaffectedwithknock-oneffectsonthepoor;itispredicted
thattourism,andthusasourceofincome,willshiftfromde-
velopingcountriestomorenorthernlatitudes.
Apartfromthesetrends,itisuncleartowhatextentindividu-
alsectorswillbeaffected.Discussionisfocussingincreasing-
lyonclimatechange’soveralleffectsonnationaleconomies.
Thebest-knowncalculationisprobablythatpresentedinthe
Sternreport(Stern 2006), where an inevitable lossof 5%,
possiblyupto20%,ofglobalgrossdomesticproduct(GDP)
ispredictedifclimatechangeisnotsloweddown.Theseare
controversialgures. According to theIPCC, however,most
calculationsagreethatariseofafewdegreescelsiusinglo-
baltemperatures would causeglobal GDPlosses of several
percent.This effect,too,willhitsomecountriesdispropor-
tionatelyhard,especiallythoseinlowerlatitudes.Reductions
ofupto30%insomesmallnationaleconomiesarealready
beingpredictedforaglobaltemperatureriseof2°C(WBGU
2007:76).Thepoorarenotonlygeographicallymorevulner-
abletonegativegrowth;anothereffectwillbethatshrinking
taxincomeswillleavestateswithevenlessfundingforsocial
anddevelopmentpolicy(Cordetal.2008).
Increasesinrainfall,oodinganddroughtarealsoaccompa-
niedby a higherincidence ofwater-borne diseases,in par-
ticulardiarrhoea,choleraandtyphus.Accordingtothepeo-
pleofToineke,diarrhoealillnessesspreadwithinweeks.The
incidenceofthesediseasesispredictedtoriseespeciallyin
East,SouthandSoutheastAsia,duetoacombinationoflack
ofcleanwater,pollutionofexistingwatersources, general
livingconditionsandlevelsofhygiene.Changesinthelocal
watersituationcanalsoleadtomosquito-bornediseases;the
insectsbreedwherever(contaminated)surfacewatercollects,
e.g.throughincreasedrainfallorthewideruseofirrigation
systems.Theregionsandperiodsaffectedbytheseillnesses
willexpand.SouthernAfrica,theHornofAfrica (Cordetal.


Changes in agricultural production potential
(2080s, in % of the potential of 2000)
     
 
2008)and Central Asia(IPCC2007b:408)arethreatenedby
thespreadofmalaria.Theincidenceofdenguefeverwillin-
creaseinurbanareaswherethelackofwastewaterdisposal
systemsprovidesmosquitoes with breeding grounds. Most
ofthe victims will be the urban poor,subsistence farmers,
groupswith weaker immune systems(theelderly,children)
andcoastaldwellers(WBGU2007:77).
Fig. 2 (after Cord et al. 2008) summarises some effects of
climatechangeandtheirdiverse,complexinteraction.Italso
illustrates the particul ar vulnerability of the poor to these
impacts.
At present it is hardly possible to predict how the climate
changeeffectsdescribedabovewill actuallyplay out inin-
dividualregions.Thisismainlyduetotwofactors(C.Müller
2009:9ff).First,theglobalclimateissocomplexthatallmod-
elsofitare verysimplied,i.e.only partialand/orapproxi-
mate.Retrospectivemodellingofglobaltemperaturesinthe
twentiethcenturyarerelativelygood;however,precipitation
patterns and regional detail s areina ccurately represented.
TemperaturerisesshowninhalfthemodelsforAfricawere
lowerthanwereactuallyobserved.Rainfallwas30%under-
or 79 % overestimated in the models compared to actual
III. What climate change
impacts are anticipated in
future?



Climatechangeand
climaticimpacts
Directimpacts
Degradationandlossof
naturalresources
Spreadofenvironmen-
tallycauseddiseases
Lossofnaturalhabitats
andbiodiversity
Reducedincomefrom
agriculture,fisheryandna-
ture-dependenteconomy
Deterioratinghealth;
decliningcapacitytoact
andadapt
Migrationtriggered
byenvironmental
developments
Alterationstorelativeprices:
foodpricesrise,affecting
thepoorinparticular
Slowergrowth:f iscal
marginfore.g.socialpolicy
declines
Growingriskofconflict
Impactsonhouseholds Socialimpacts
Renewed,additionalandworseningpovertyandpovertytraps
 
projected development of total CO2 emis-
sionsintheatmosphereduringthe21stcen-
turyaccordingtoeachofsixIPCCscenarios.
Italso illustrates the maximum total emis-
sions and the climate-friendly CO2 budget
requiredforthiscenturyifdisastrousclimate
change is tobe avoided.The conclusion is
thatdangerouslevelsofclimatechangecan
only be prevented if future emissions are
halvedby2050comparedto1990levelsand
subsequentlyreducedevenfurther.
amounts(ibid.,p.17).Projectionsbasedonthesemodelsare
correspondinglyunreliable.
Second,thedriversofclimatechange,aboveallgreenhouse
gasemissions,varydependingonhumandecisions–which
areunpredictable.Thisiswhyscenariosareusedtodescribe
alternative emissions processes. Another important func-
tionofthescenariosisthattheyalsoindicatewhatalterna-
tivecoursesofactionarenecessarytoavoidclimatechange
reachingdangerousproportions.TheIPCC’sscenariosshow
projected future situations with variations in population
growth, technological change, energy use, energy sources
andlanduse(Nakicenovic/Swart2000),factorswhichsigni-
cantlyaffectthescaleofemissionsandofclimatechange.
TheCarbonBudget2007reportpublishedinSeptember2008
(TheGlobalCarbonProject2008)showshowCO2emissions
haveincreasedinrecentyears,risingfourtimesfastersince
2000 than before. Th e following diagram from the Human
Development Report 20 07/20 08 (HDR 2008: 20) shows the

 

7.000
6.000
5.000
4.000
3.000
2.000
1.456
1.000
2000 2032 2042 2100
0
Fig.3


1IPCCscenarioA1FI
2IPCCscenarioA2
3IPCCscenarionA1B
4IPCCscenarioB2
5IPCCscenarioA1T
6IPCCscenarioB1
7Sustainableemissionscurve
CO2budgetwhichwould
preventdangerousclimate
change
Explanation: the   describe plausible future global developments in population,
economicgrowth,technologicalchangeandrelatedCO2emissions. The assumestrong
populationandeconomicgrowth,linkedtodependencyonfossilfuels(A1FI),non-fossilfuels(A1T)or
acombinationof both (A1B). The   assumes weaker economic growth,a lesserdegreeof
globalizationandmuchhigherpopulationgrowth.Theandincludeacertainreduction
in emissions due to increasingly efc ient useof resources and technological improvements(B1)or
increasinglydecentralizedsolutions(B2)
Source:Meinshausen20 07
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
 
Inthe long term,very differentrisingtemperaturepatterns
arepossible, depending onwhich emissions scenario actu-
allyoccurs. Ifgreenhouse gasconcentrations are stabilised
atbelow 450 ppm (partsper million,the usual measureof
greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere), global
warmingcouldbeheldatatotalof2°Cabovepre-industrial
levels.Increasesbeyondthisraisetoover50%theprobabil-
ity of climate change reaching dangerous levels. If the cli-
mateisnotprotected,risesofupto7°Carepossible.These
areglobalaverages;theguresonthecontinents,especially
inthemostvulnerableareas,aremuchhigher.IntheIPCC’s
twomostextremescenarios,thetemperatureispredictedto
rise2.4–6.4%(worstcase)or1.1to2.9°(bestcase)by2100
(IPCC2007a:749).
Alterationstoprecipitationpatternsaremuchmoredifcult
topredict.Sometendenciesarerelativelyclear,forexample

Afurthertemperatureincreaseofbetween0.4to0.6°Cisex-
pectedtooccurbetween2005and2030.Thiswillbecaused
byexisting emissionsofgreenhouse gases, independentof
howemissionsdevelopin the nearfuture.Accordingtothe
WBGU (2007: 60), only adrasticevent suchas ameteorite
impact could alter this prognosis. The cont inents will heat
up more than the oceans; higher latitudes will also warm
upmoreasmeltingsnowandicecoverresultsinmoresolar
radiationbeingabsorbedinsteadofreected.
Inhabitantsofpolarareaswillbeparticularlyaffectedastem-
peraturestherewillriserapidly.Itismuchharderfornature
andhumanstocope witha rapid risethan a gradual,slow
increase.Theeffectswillalsobesevereonthepopulationin
areaswheretheclimateisalreadyhot.Heatwaveslikethat
in2003inEuropewillbethenormin2050.


 
that arid subtropical zones, the Medi terranean region and
southernAfricawillbecomedrier,whereasareasofhighrain-
fallinthe tropics andinhigher latitudes willbecome even
wetter(WBGU2007:62).However,itisnotclearhowrainfall
patterns will develop in the Sahel zone. The long-term de-
velopmentsinhurricaneoccurrencearealsoveryuncertain.
Thetotalriseinsealevelsisalso difculttopredict,mainly
becauseitdependslargelyonhowmuchinlandicemelts.If
noactionistaken,thesealevelisprojectedtorisebyupto
halfametrecomparedto1990levels,possiblyevenupto140
centimetres(Rahmstorf2007).Ifglobalwarmingisstabilised
at3°Ccomparedtothepre-industrialaverage,thesealevel
mayriseby3to5metresby2300(WBGU2007:38).
Looking at specicregional projections (e.g.inIPCC2007a:
ch.11,2007b:ch.9-16;WBGU2007:ch.7),itmustbenoted
that,atbest, changesin the weathercan be projected. Re-
gional or even national project ions of how vulnerable the
populationwillbeinthefaceofthesechangesarestillvery
uncertain atpresent and are sometimeseven dismissedas
“purespeculation”(FeinsteinIC2008:7).
III.1 GLOBAL PROJECTIONS: IMPACTS
Thefollowingdiagram(Fig.4)fromtheGermanAdvisoryCoun-
cilonGlobalChange(WBGU2007:176)showspossibleeffects
ofrisingglobaltemperatures.
An update of the IPCC’s Reasons for Concern from 2001
was published in March 2009 (Smith et al. 2009). These
climateconcerns includethreatened systems (island states,
tropicalglaciersetc),extremeweatherevents, theunequal
distributionofclimatechangeimpactsandmassivealterations
to the earth system (tipping elements). The update shows
thatecosystemsarereactingmorequickly,extremeweather
eventsarehappeningmorefrequentlyandaremoresevere
than anticipated. Greater risks and severe consequences
followingevenslighttemperaturerisesaretobeexpectedin
allaspects.TheinternationalScienticCongressonClimate
Change conrms that the IPCC’s worst case scenarios are
occurringandthatsocietiesareextremelyvulnerabletoeven
moderatechangesinclimate.
IV.1 CLIMATE CHANGE, POVERTY AND POVERTY
REDUCTION: HOW ARE THEY RELATED?
Wehavealreadyshown themostimportantlinkbetween cli-
matechangeandpovertyreduction:climatechangecausesand
exacerbates poverty, while also impeding development and
povertyreductionbymakingthefutureavailabilityofnatural
resourcesdoubtful.However,povertyandlackofdevelopment
alsoreducepeople’sabilitytoreacttoclimatechange;inother
works,povertyitself aggravates the consequencesofclimate
changeforthoseaffected.
Therearehoweverotherlinksbetweenclimatechange,pov-
erty reduc tion and development. Does povert y also play a
part in causing climate change? That would be the case
wherepovertycontributestonon-sustainablelanduseprac-
tices,producinghighgreenhousegasemissions.IntheAma-
zonregionof Brazil,for example, poor smallholderfarmers
areinvolvedinthedestructionoftherainforest,butonlyas
theweakestlinkinachainmainlyconsistingofmorepower-
fulactors–thetimber,beefandsojaindustries.Soeachcase

IV. Climate change and poverty
reduction
 




Food
Water
Ecosystems
Extreme weather conditions
Risk of rapid climate
change and large-scale
irreversible effects
Final temperature levels (compared to preindustrial levels
0° C 1° C 2° C 3° C 4° C 5° C
Disappearance of small
glaciers worldwide – potential
threat to water supply in
many areas
Considerable changes in water availability
Over 30% increase on flowing
away of surface water in the
Mediterranean region and in
southern Africa
Rising sea levels threaten large
cities such as London, Shanghai,
New York, Tokyo or Hong Kong
Coral reef ecosystems
extensively damaged;
damage finally irreversible
Possible start of breakdown
of parts of or all the Amazon
rain forest
Large proportion of ecosystems which cannot preserve their present form
Many species threatened
with extinction
Increasing intensity of storms, forest fires, flooding and heatwaves
Slight increase in hurricane
intensity causes twice as much
damage in dollars in the USA
Danger of weakening of natural carbon dioxide sinks and the Atlantic
thermohaline circulation; possible increase in release of natural methane
Start of irreversible melting
of Greenland icecap
Increased risk of abrupt, large-scale climate shifts
(e.g. collapse of Atlantic thermohaline circulation or
western Antarctic icesheet)
Severe effects
in the Sahel
zone
Increasing harvests in many
developed regions due to
CO2 fertilizer effect
Decline of harvests in many developed
regions despite CO2 fertilizer effect
Decreasing harvests in many developing regions
Rising number of people threatened
by hunger. Biggest increase in Africa
and West Asia
Severe decline of harvests in
whole regions
(e.g. up to one third of Africa)
 
mustbeconsideredcarefullyindeterminingwhetherpoverty
causesemissions.
Doespovertyreductionalsoreduceemissions?Ifso,itwould
betrueto saynotonlythat“climateprotection equalspov-
erty reduction”, in that reducing climate change would at
leastbenetthepoorofthefuture,butalsothat“povertyre-
ductionequalsclimateprotection”.However,reducinglarge-
scaleemissionsonanationallevel,whetherinindustrialised,
emerging or developing economies, is themore important
task.
Ispoverty reduction ratherthanclimateprotection thepri-
mary goal? By boosting and industrialising the economy,
development and poverty re duction themselves could con-
tribute to climate change. On the other hand, some argue
thatclimateprotectionwillimpedepovertyreductioninthat
avoidingemissionswillslowdown thegrowth necessaryto
overcomepoverty.
Sometimes a w in-win option bene ting all sides makes it
possible to implement sustainable development, reducing
bothpovertyandemissionsatthesametime.Oneexample
would be strategies to enable the poor to benet d irectly
fromeconomicprotsfromclimateprotection.Inthiscase,
climateprotectionandpoverty reductiongohandinhand,
preventingpovertyarisingfromclimatechangeandreduc-
ingexistingpoverty.Thepoor canoften reduce CO2emis-
sionsorbindtheminbiomass(e.g.byplantingtrees)inrela-
tivelysimpleways.Iftheyarethengivenaccesstomarkets
where they can sell these savings, they can actually earn
more,especiallyiftheyalreadygainanincomefromthese
activities(seebox2).

BOX 2: MI BOSQUE. CLIMATE PROTECTION =
POVERTY REDUCTIONG
The CAREproject Mi Bosque(myforest)in westernGua-
temalacombinescommunity-based adaptationtoclimate
changeimpactswithavoidanceoffurtherclimatechange.
Treeplantinghelps preventerosion,producesfruittobe
eatenand marketedand improvessoilquality.Reforesta-
tionalsocounteractsdeforestation,itselfthecauseofCO2
emissions,aswellasbindingadditionalCO2whichwould
otherwisereinforcethegreenhouseeffect.
Currently,treeplantingbindsover200tper hectare.Ad-
ditionalbenetsofthissustainablelanduseareimprove-
mentsinagriculturalproductivity,acorrespondingreduc-
tioninmigrationtoseekpaidworkandincomefromselling
thewood. Efforts are beingmade to measureandcertify
theCO2savingsmoreeffectivelyandtomarketthem.
TheprojectexempliestheconceptofReducingEmissions
fromDeforestationandDegradation(REDD).Deforestation
anddamagetoforestscauseupto25%oftotalanthropo-
genicgreenhousegases.Protectingforeststoavoidthese
emissionsisacost-effectiveclimatechangestrategy(Stern
2006).Atpresentitisstillunclearhowforestpreservation
canbe rewardednancially.Possible alternatives are rec-
ognition of CO2 avoidance on the emissions certicates
marketsorvoluntarynancingthroughfunds.
 
IV.2 ADAPTING TO THE IMPACTS OF CLIMATE
CHANGE
As the CARE projec t Mi Bosque (Box 2) shows, it is possible
tocombineefforts to avoid climate changewith adaptingto
itsimpacts.Foryears,thefocushasbeenonavoidance;more
recently,adaptationhasbeguntotakecentrestage.Thereare
severalreasonsforthis(Füssel/Klein2002):
 The effec ts of greenhouse gases already in the atmos-
phere willbe feltin the future;in otherwords, climate
changeisunavoidable.Theglobalpopulationmustadapt
toitinanycase.Equally,thepositiveeffectsofsuccessful
emissions avoidance strategies will not be felt for dec-
ades.
 Adaptationmeasuresat local,regionalornationallevel
can protec t the population  directly from the ef fects of
climatechange.Avoidancemeasuresaremore depend-
entoninternationalcooperation.
 Adaptation measures also protec t the population from
theeffects ofclimatic variations- short-term variations
which currently have damaging effects par ticularly on
thelivesofthepoor.
Avoidingemissionsisindisputablynecessary,butthiswillnot
besufcienttopreventnegativeimpactsofclimatechange.
The suggestions for combining poverty reduction and cli-
mateprotectiondescribedbelowfocusonadaptationatlo-
callevel,sustainedbythelocalcommunityandsupportedby
projectsandorganisationswhichtacklepoverty.
Adaptationtoclimatechangeisalreadyhappening,notjust
inorganisedform.Thismakesitessentialfororganizations
to take into account the ways in which people are already
adaptingtoenvironmentalchangesandlocalclimatechange
effects.The population may beforcedby their situation to
takeunsustainablemeasures.InToineke,somefamilieshave
increasedtheirsaltproductionby“saltboiling”.Thisusesup
alargeamountofwood,leadingtoover-useofthesurround-




 
ingforestwhich otherwiseprovideserosionprotectionand
asourceoffood.Thistypeofmaladaptationcanbeavoided
bysuitablesupport.Ontheotherhand,thelocalpopulation
usuallyknowtheirlocalenvironmentwell.Measurestosup-
port them in theiradaptation strategiesshouldbe compat-
iblewiththisknowledgeandcangainfromit.
IV.3 SUPPORTING RESILIENCE
People must be viewed as ac tive agents in connection with
climatechange, for the reasonsshownabove.Thisviewpoint
isthebasisofthelivelihoodconcept,whichiswidespreadin
developmentresearchandinorganizationswhichworktore-
ducepoverty.
It covers the strategies people use to ensure their surv ival
and full their needsbased on their capabilities and avail-
ableresources.Someofthesestrategiesinvolvemaintaining
accesstocertainresources,includingsocialcapital(e.g.inte-
gration in thecommunity),human capital(e.g.knowledge,
health),physicalcapital (housing)andnancial capital(sav-
ings).Themost importantfactor isnaturalcapital – fruitful
land,regularrainfallandotherecosystemservices.
Thelivelihoodsperspectiveincludesthewaypeople’sability
toactivelyensuretheirsurvivalisaffectedbychangestothe
availableresources.Italsocoversthreeotheraspectsofpov-
erty.Therstoftheseispeople’svulnerabilitytotheimpacts
ofclimatechangeasmentionedabove.Vulnerabilitymeans
theextent to which people’sopportunities tosustain their
livelihoodaredamagedbythese impacts.In this case, pov-
ertyreductionmeansovercomingthisvulnerability.
Thesecondaspectisresilience.Apopulation’svulnerability
dependson how itcan react whenclimatechange impacts
affectitsmeansoflivelihoodintheformofsporadicshocks



 
(e.g.astorm)orlong-termpressuressuchasdwindlingwater
resources.Resilienceincludesrst,solvingtheproblemand
second, adapting to the new conditions (Handmer/Dovers
1996).If people can onlyreact byabsorbing thechanges –
e.g.eatingevenlessifharvests fail – thiswill notdecrease
theirvulnerability.Inthelongterm,therefore,absorbingor
copingstrategiesarenotsustainable(Davies1993).Adapta-
tiontothechangedconditions,however,canreducevulner-
ability.Onthe other hand, reducing vulnerabilitycan open
upnewopportunitiesforapopulationtoadaptintheirown
waystothenewconditions(Kelly/Adger2000).Forexample,
ifwateraccessisensuredandstoragefacilitiesimprovedby
external suppor t, it mayb ecome possible to increase food
production, which ac ts as a buffer. So resilience draws on
availablelocalresources, but alsoonaccesstoexternal aid
(IISD2003:6).
Strengtheningresilienceiscentraltoanapproachtopoverty
reduction. Measures may be specically tailored to a par-
ticular threat: if climate change reduces rainfall, drought-
resistanttypesofgraincanbeprovidedforsmallholders. A
prerequisiteforthisisdeniteknowledgeofboththethreat
itselfandtheefcacyofthemeasuresagainstit. Thisisnot
thecaseifthenewlyintroducedgrainsaredroughtresistant,
but growing them is incompatible w ith the farmers’ other
activities.
However,strengtheningthepopulationgenerallywillcontin-
uetobeveryimportant.Becauseitissohardtopredictthe
consequencesofclimatechangeandhoweffectivestrength-
eningresilienceina particular aspectwillbe,itisessential
tomaintain people’sgeneral capacity toact and react.This
includestheir health as a prerequisiteaswell as incometo
enableaccesstoadditionalresourcesandsocialnetworksto
compensateforunforeseenvulnerability(IISD2003:7).
Finally, security must be mentioned. Poverty reduction as
practised by CARE and other organizations involves more
thansimplyensuring thatpeoplehaveadequate and effec-
tive access to resources which provide theirlivelihood and
fulltheirneeds.Itisalsonecessarytoensurethatthisaccess
isguaranteedforthelongterm.However,climatechangeim-
pactsunderminetheseefforts.Sothestrategiesandactivities
ofthepeoplethemselves,aswellasthoseaimedatpoverty
reduction, must beclimate secure:they muststillfunction
eveniftheeffectsofclimatechangearemoresevereordif-
ferentfromthoseanticipated.Theyshouldalsobenoregret
measures,usefulevenwithoutclimatechange.
IV.4 CRITERIA FOR SUCCESSFUL
ADAPTATION MEASURES
A2007paperanalysed130casestudiesofadaptationandde-
velopmentpolicyinreactiontoclimatechange.Themeasures
wereplacedonaspectrum(McGrayetal.2007:18,cf.Fig.5).
At one end are activities which concentrate on structural
causes of poverty and v ulnerability in general (left). At the
other end are those related toclimate change itself (right).
Inbetweenaremeasureswhichstrengthenpeople’scapacity
toreacttoclimatechangeimpactsandthosewhichintegrate
foreseeable climate risks into economic, polit ical and other
decision-makingprocesses.
Theaimof this arrangementisnotso much totmeasures
correctlyinto one category or another;the spectrumshows
variousaspectsandapproaches which ideally shouldbeim-
plementedtogether.Ifalltheseaspectsaretakenintoaccount
inasingle project,it may belessfocussed on particularas-
pects.However,thiscanbeanadvantageoverconcentrating
tooexclusivelyonasingleaspect.Aholisticapproachismore
effectivethan precision, since local climate change impacts
thepopulationindifferentwaysatthesametime.


 
Effectivenessisoneofseveralcriteriawhichadaptationmeas-
ures, in the sense of livelihood- oriented poverty reduc tion,
aimtofull.Asurveyevaluatingpreviousformsofadaptation
(IDS2008:27f.)proposesvecriteria,asfollows:
Thesecriteriaarenotonlyimportantattheplanning stage.
The local population’s own ways of adapting to climate
change impac ts, and the effe ct these have at a soc ial level
(e.g.increased energy requirementsduetoincreaseduseof
airconditioning),canbetestedagainstthem.Nationaladap-
tationpoliciesshouldalsotakethemintoaccount.


1 2 34
Providingwomen
withcrossbredgoatsand
instructioningraze-freefeed-
ing(KaramojaAgropastoral
DevelopmentProgramme)
Diversication
oflivelihoodstrategiesin
areasvulnerabletoooding
(SouthSouthNorth)
Vaccinationprogram
toeradicatediseasesinlow-
incomeareas(CubanMinistry
ofHealth)








Participatoryrefor-
estationinRiodeJaneiro’s
hillsidefavelastocombat
ood-inducedlandslides(City
ofRiodeJaneiro)
Reinstating
pastoralnetworkstofoster
appropriaterangelandman-
agementpracticesinarid
regions(NationalUniversityof
Mongolia)
Revivingtradi-
tionalenclosurestoencour-
agevegetationregeneration
andreducelanddegradation
(MinistryofNaturalResources
andTourism,Tanzania)
Monitoringsalini-
zationofdrinkingwaterand
drillingnewwellstoreplace
thosethatarenolongerus-
able(SouthSouthNorth)
Teachingfarmerstocol-
lectclimatedataandintegrate
itintotheirplantingdecisions
(GovernmentofMali/Swiss
Agenc yforDevelopmentand
Cooperation)
Usingnation-
allystandardizedriskassess-
mentprocedurestodevelopa
communityadaptionplanof
action(localgovernment)
Managingcoral
reefsinresponsetowide-
spreadcoralbleaching(WWF)
Reducingther iskof
glaciallakeoutburstoods
fromTshoRolpaLake(Govern-
mentofNepal)
 
   
 
IV.5 MEASURES
CARE differentiates between measures for (1) support, (2)
protectionand(3)livelihoodprovision,accordingtourgency.
The third type compr ises emergency aid designed to keep
peoplealiveinanacutesituation.
Longer-termadaptation to climate change involvesthe rst
twocategories.Thefollowingtableshowsthesedistinctions;
measurestoensurefood security havebeen supplemented
toincludegeneraladaptationtoclimatechange(CARE1998,
Cordetal.2008,IDS2008).


CRITERION DESCRIPTION
EFFECTIVE-
NESS
FLEXIBILITY
FAIRNESS
EFFICIENCY
SUSTAINA-
BILITY
Thepopulation’svulnerabilityisreallyreduced,theirresiliencestrengthened,theiraccesstoresources
secured.Effectivenessalsodependsonmeasuresbeingcompatiblewiththepopulation’scircumstances,
strategies and culture. Therefore it is essential that people participate in the development and
implementationofmeasures.Themeasuresshouldnotconictwitheachother.
Because thefuture isso unpredictable, measures shouldbe exible enough to havepositiveeffects
whateverclimatechangebrings(noregretmeasures).Theyshouldalsoinvolvelowlevelsofsunkcosts
(i.e.costswhichcannotberecovered).
Povertyreductionmeasuresaiddifferentgroupstovaryingextents;theyshouldnotreinforceexisting
inequalities–eventhoughitissometimeseasiertostrengthenlessvulnerablegroups.Povertyreduction
effortsshould be distributed fairlyanyway, for ethicalreasons – butalso forstrategic reasons,since
otherwisethemeasureswilllacksupportandlong-termeffectswillnotbeachieved.
Maladaptati on also occurs when the most cost-e ffective measures are not used and/or the costs of
adaptation are higherthan itsusefulness. However,itisdifcult to quantifyusefulness: how muchis
itworthtoenablepeopletomaintaintheirlivelihoods?Thisperspectiveisknownastheeconomicsof
adaptation.
Beforemeasuresareadopted,theirlong-termeffectsshouldbeconsidered:whethertheywillbestable
andare efcientinthelongterm.Sustainability also requiresthat measureshavenonegativeeffects
onlocalecosystems,socialcohesionetc.Themainfactoristhatmeasuresshouldbesormlyrootedin
people’severydaylivesthattheyaresustainedoncetheaidorganizationhaswithdrawnitssupport.
 

 
PROTECTION AND MAINTENANCE OF LIVELIHOODS SUPPORTING LIVELIHOODS
• General:protection/restorationofsecureaccessto
resourcesormeansofproduction.
• Basicraisingofawareness:whatishappeningdueto
climatechangeandhowdoesitaffectthepopulation?
Enablelocalstoparticipateandcombinetheir
knowledgeabouteffectswithexternalknowledge.
• Ensurethatdealingwithclimatechangebecomesthe
newnorm,sopeopleareawareofitandadapttheir
livelihoodstrategiesontheirowninitiative.
• Applyaidpaymentstoensurepeopledonotselltheir
meansofproductioninacrisis.
• Setupearlywarningsystemsandtrackclimate
change;makeriskprognosisandinformationabout
possibleimpactsavailable(radioetc.).
• Emergencyplanstoenablequick,effectivereactionto
unexpectedevents.
• Managementofremainingrisks,e.g.intheformof
microinsurancesagainstweatherevents.
• Materialinfrastructuretodefendagainstimmediate
effectsofclimatechange(e.g.dykes,building
regulations/technologies,irrigationsystems,water
reservoirsinaridareas).
• Improvementofsoil,forestandwatermanagement
e.g.tomaintainagriculture(e.g.treeplantingto
protectagainsterosion).
• Healthandothermeasurestoensurethatpeopleare
notsoweakenedbydiseaseorundernourishmentthat
theylosethecapacitytoactandreact.
• Institutionalizingand„automating“localprotective
measures:whoisresponsibleforwhat,ensuring
communicationbetweenthesepeopleandinstitutions
etc.
• Relatedtothis:traininglocalindividualsresponsible
fortheseparticularroles.
• Stabilizingharvestsbydiversifyingcropsandadapting
themtotheprojectedclimateconditions.
• Developingalternativeincome- generatingactivities,
esp.thoselessdependentonthenaturalenvironment
(e.g.notagricultural)orlesslikelytobeaffectedby
climatechange.
• Providingconditionsandincentivestoadoptthese
alternativestrategies.
• Ensuringaccesstonewtechnologies,graintypesand
otherinnovationsasprerequisitefornewpractices.
• Strengtheningstrategieswhichhaveprovedsustainable,
notmaladaptationse.g.seasonaljobmigration.
• Improvingstoragecapacitiesforreservesincaseof
failedharvests.
• Improvedmanagementofcommunityassetswhich
areaffectedbyclimatechangebutcannoteasilybe
protectedbyindividualowners.
 Educationtoimprovepeople’scapacitytoactandreact.
• Improvingaccesstopoliticaldecision-making,so
communityadaptationisdesignedtomeetactualneeds.
• Empowermente.g.ofwomentoenablethemtotake
morepartindecisionmaking.
 
V. Poverty reduction and strate-
gies to secure livelihoods: case
studies and lessons learned
AsTable2shows,theinstrumentsofthelivelihoodapproach
topovertyreductioncanbeappliedtopromoteadaptation
toclimatechangeimpacts.Itisnotnecessarytoinventnew
formsofpovertyreduction;however,existingstrategiesmust
bemadeclimatesecure.Ifthiscanbeachieved,theseinstru-
mentsareparticularlysuitable,becausetheystrengthenthe
self-preservationcapacityofpoorpopulations.Thiscapacity
isendangered by climate change, but is also an important
partofthesolution.Decentralized,community-basedadap-
tationcannotonlycoveractualneeds,butalsomakeuseof
localadaptationcapacities.
Wenow describesome cases of reactiontoclimatechange
impacts. People oftenreactontheir own initiative.Climate
variationsarenotanewphenomenontomostofthem,but
theunusualextentandspeedofcurrentclimatechangechal-
lengetheiradaptationcapacity.However,adaptationistak-
ingplace,sopovertyreductioneffortsmustsupportthisor,
ifnecessary,offeralternatives.Hereweshowinmoredetail
how these reactions and adaptations combat poverty and
whatcan be learnedfrom this. We relatethis tothe crite-
riamentionedabove–effectiveness, exibility,fairness, ef-
ciency andsustainability.The casestudy on thevillage of
ToinekeinWestTimor,Indonesia,wascarriedoutespecially
forthispaperbyZEFincooperationwithCARE.
V.1 SMALLHOLDER FARMERS IN TANZANIA: SPECIAL-
ISING AND REDUCING DEPENDENCE ON AGRICULTURE
The livelihood approach to poverty reduction emphasises
diversicationofeconomicactivities(Ellis1998).Thisreduc-
esthepopulation’svulnerability,inthattheycanfallbackon
otherincomesources.
Thedisadvantageisthattheymustmaintainbothactivities
simultaneouslyandso can investlesseffortineach.Some-
times it seems more advantageous to specialise. This was
observedamongsmallholderfarmersinKenyaandTanzania
(Eriksen/Brown/Kelly2005).
CARE carried out a country-wide study of climate change
impacts and adaptat ion in Tanzania (Ehrhar t/Twena 200 6).
Tanzaniais the l argest, most densely populated country in
EastAfrica,but also the poorest. Theprimary threat is the
anticipated increase in frequency and severity of extreme
weatherevents.About80%ofthepopulationisdependent
onrain-fedsubsistenceagriculturewhichissusceptibletocli-
matevariations.Undernourishmentiswidespreadand food
aidisoftennecessary.
The study investigated smallholder farmers in the Saweni
district in northeast Tanzania,to see howthey coped with
droughtand maintainedfoodsecurity(Eriksen/Brown/Kelly
2005).Harvestsinthisareaoftenfailduetodrought.Water,
grazingland andrewood are inshort supply.Smallholder
farmerscultivateafairlywiderangeofcrops,themostpopu-
larbeingmaize.Animalhusbandryhasdiminisheddrastically
in recent decades. Impor ts of additional produce from the
surroundingareahavebeenincreasingsincethelate1970s.
Non-agricultural income is becoming more important, al-
though most households continue to practise agriculture.
Youngpeopleseekpaidwork;youngmenoftenmigrate.
Inthepast,fruitandtubersweregatheredandanimalsand
poultrysoldduringperiodsofdrought.Othercopingmecha-


 
nisms included occasional work, family support and emer-
gencyaid.Thelocalpeopledifferentiatebetweenmainand
secondary strategies.The formerare regular activities pro-
ducingareliableincome overlongerperiods;these replace
agriculture. Small businesses (e.g. shops) or crafts such as
carpetweavingarecommonstrategies.Secondarystrategies
entail using individual opportunities, e.g.making and sell-
ingrope,whenthemainstrategy isnot possible.Themain
strategiesareintensive,specialisedandbringacashincome.
Moneyhasbecomeimportant,aboveallforpurchasingad-
ditionalfoodandhealthservices.
Theauthorsidentiedincreasingmonetarizationanddwin-
dlingsignicanceoflocalproduceasreasonswhylocalpeo-
plespecialiseinafewactivitiestocopewithdroughts.This
includesthepossibilitythatseveralpeopleinonehousehold
– not the whole household – concentrate on one activity.
Although agriculture is still the preferred activity, people
continue to practise the specialised, cash- oriented activit y
sotheydonotlosetouchwithitandcancontinueitduring
phasesofdrought(Eriksen/Brown/Kelly2005).
Thisresponsetoclimatechange impactshasbeen initiated
bythelocalpopulation.Accesstopreferredmethodsofgain-
ingaspecialised,cash-bringinglivelihoodisunequal;e.g.it
iseasierforthebetterqualied.Thisformofcopingiseffec-
tive because the popul ation is more dependent on money
anywaythanin thepast.Money mayalsomakethemmore
exible,becauseitcanbeusedforavarietyofpurposes,un-
likeagriculturalproduce.
However,coping isnot thesame asadaptation.Constantly
copingwithenvironmentalstressandpressureonlivelihood
activitiesisnotsustainableanddoesnotreducethepopula-
tion’sstructuralvulnerability.Itmaybethatthecopingstrat-
egiesfordroughtobservedinTanzaniaarenot“maladapta-
tions”.Howeverbecauseoflowgrowth,localjobmarketscan
                                         



 
onlyabsorbalimitedamount of non-agricultural activities.
Thegreaterthenumberofpeopleconcentratingonthiscop-
ing strategy, the less effective it is, because the potential
income declines. People who spec ialise in non-agr icultural
activ ity also lose the food secur ity which subsistence agri-
culturecanprovide despiteclimatechangeimpacts. Acash
income may fail or lose its purchasing power, for example
whenglobal food prices rise.The strategyofgaining inde-
pendencefromagricultureandnaturalresourcesinresponse
toclimatechangeisrisky;othereconomicsectorswillalsobe
affectedbyclimatechange,sothepopulation’svulnerability
mayonlybepostponed,notreduced.
V.2 MICROINSURANCE IN INDIA:
THE POOR PROTECT THEMSELVES AGAINST RISKS
Micronancialserviceshavebeenusedformanyyears now
tosupportpeopleinbreakingoutofthepovertytrap.Micro-
loans,forexample,enablethebeneciariestosetupsmall
businesses.
Recently, microinsurance has also been initiated, to insure
peoplewhohavefewpossessionsandcanonlyaffordsmall
premiums. This provides a form of livelihood protection:
if sudden or long-term events - storms, drought – destroy
meansofproduction,thethreatenedincomecanbesecured
byinsurancepayments.
Insurances,especiallyindex-basedinsurances,alsohavethe
advantagethat they rewardrisk provision.Payment is trig-
geredbyaphysicalfactor,e.g.acertainlevelofrainfall,not
bytheactualdamageafarmersuffers.Hecanreducetherisk
bycultivatingmorerobustcrops(Arnold2008).Inthisway,
theinsurance isalso an incentiveto make one’slivelihood
climatesecure.
Riskreductiongivesthepoorscopetoadapttoclimatechange
impacts (Lemos/Tompkins 2008). Because microinsurance
secures existing livelihoods and encourage improvements,
theyare a good instrumenttoprotect peoplefromslipping
(back)intoorenablethemtoriseoutofpoverty.Thepoor,
however,often cannot affordthisinsurance(Reiner 2008).
Onlyasmallnumbers of insurances reach the poor(Arnold
2008,Pierro/Desai2008).Thiscouldbecounteredbyassist-
ance in paying premiums – this could be taken on by the
BOX 3: MICROINSURANCES AND
WEATHER-RELATED DISASTERS:
CARE INDIA AND BAJAJ ALLIANCE
CAREIndiaandtheIndianinsurancecompanyBajajAlliance
together provide microinsurance for about 92,000 peo-
pleinthe coastalregionsofthe Indianstate TamilNadu.
AccordingtoRNMohanty,headofCAREIndiaMicroinsur-
ance,themainchallengetheconceptentailsisconvincing
peopletoincluderiskprovision in their livelihoodstrate-
giesandtodevelopacultureofmakingprovisionforthe
future:“Almost90%ofourcustomersarerst-timeinsur-
ancetakers.[…]The hardesttaskistoteachandtrain the
people.”
Tosucceed,thesystemmustgainpeople’strust,soitisof
primeimportancetoregulateclaimssatisfactorily.Thesys-
temwasputtothetestinNovember2008,whentropical
storm Nishahit theTamilNadu coast, making thousands
homeless. Project workers went at once to the affected
areastoassessthedamageandmakepaymentsasquickly
aspossible.Thatshowedpeoplehowusefulitwastoinvest
ininsurance,leadingtogrowinginterest.


 
countries primarily responsible for anthropogenic climate
change. To suit these users, insurance must be straightfor-
wardand easy to understand; it shouldalso bepossible to
payexiblepremiums,sinceotherwisepeoplewithirregular
incomeswouldsoondropoutofthesystem.
Insurancesare not theonlywayinwhichthepoorcandeal
withclimate change risks, such aslossescaused by natural
disasters. Financial and social capital (savings, knowledge
andtraining,familysupport)arealsoimportantcomponents
oflivelihoodresources.However,thesecanbeoverstretched
whenonedisasterfollowsanothertooquickly.Inthatcase,
peoplecanbeforcedtosellpossessions,takeoutloansand
sofallbackintopoverty(Arnold2008).Naturaldisastersalso
tend to affect all member s of a community,s o in order to
function,insurancesmustspreadtherisk;otherwise,thepre-
miumswillbecometooexpensiveortheinsurerwillnotbe
abletoaffordtomakepayment.
Climate change is also making it more difcult to sustain
thissystem.Potentialdamagefromextremeweatherevents
isbecoming morefrequentandextensive,sosomeinsurers
arewithdrawingfromthemarket.Thishasalreadybeenob-
servedincoastalareas.Thesystemwillonlybe worthwhile
inthelongterm,onascalelargeenoughtospreadtherisk.
Reinsurance must also be built up and investments in im-
provedinfrastructure are necessary, to reduce the demand
forinsurance.
Finally,newtypesofinsurancetailoredtolocalneedsarebe-
ingtested,tolimitinsurers’costs.BajajAllianceIndia’shealth
insuranceisoneexample.WorkingwithCARE,acooperative
system has been developed in which the local community
itself administers the insurance, retaining 67 % of the pre-
miums.Thisissufcienttocovermostclaims.BajajAlliance
onlytakesoverwhenacaseexceedsthecommunity’scapac-
ity.Afterayear,it appearsthat80 to90 %ofcasescanbe
coveredinthecommunity(Alliance2009).

                                         

 
 
VI. Case study West Timor,
Indonesia
The following example of the village of Toineke in West
Timor,Indonesia,showsclearlyhowclimatechangeimpacts
people’ssurvivalstrategiesandhowtheydealwiththesitu-
ation–moreorlesssuccessfully.

VI.1 IMPACTS OF CLIMATE CHANGE IN
(EAST) INDONESIA
Inpart1,wereferredtotheuncertaintyofmakingconcretepre-
dictionsabouttheeffectsofclimatechangeonlocalweather
conditions.However,regionalprojectionsdoexist(IPCC2007a:
ch.11,2007b:ch.9-16;WBGU2007:ch.7).
Warmingin SoutheastAsia will beat 2.5°C, similar to the
globalaverage.Rainfallwillincreasebyabout7%,butwith
concentrationsinparticularregions(Boer,Faqih2004).Indo-
nesiawill probably be badlyaffected by risingsealevels:a
riseofonemetrewouldleadtothelossof2,000islandsand
400,000 hectares ofland (IPCC2007b:485).Local develop-
mentscouldbeverydifferentfromtheseregionaltrends,due
tothe complex geographyof theregion;temperaturesmay
risemuchmoreininlandareas.EastIndonesiainparticular
isaffected by the El Nino southern oscillation (ENSO)phe-
nomenon,wherereducedrainfallleadstolongerdryseasons
and droughts. This happened, for example, in 1982/1983,
1991, 1994 and 1997/1998 (Hulme/Sheard 1999). Where
rainfallincreases, thetrendtosudden,heavyrainfallisalso
strengthened,resultinginerosionandooding(IPCC2007a:
886).Littleisknownabout the development of the tropical
stormswhichoccurespeciallyinEastIndonesia,buttheyare
expectedtoincreaseinintensity(byabout10–20%ifthe
seasurfacetemperaturerisesbetween2to4°C,IPCC2007b:
479),whiletheirfrequencymayactuallydecrease.Indonesia,
thethirdlargestglobalemitterofgreenhousegases,isusu-
allyperceivedasdamagingtheclimate(Weck2007,J.Müller
2008).ThiscasestudyshowsthatinIndonesia,asintherest
oftheworld,itisthepoorwhousuallyprotleastfromthe
overexploitationofthenatural environmentbutwhosuffer
mostfromitseffects.
VI.2 TOINEKE, WEST TIMOR: ECONOMY AND SOCIETY
ToinekeisavillagelocatedatthemouthofRiverNoemukein
theIndianOcean.Itcomprises680households(approx.3,000
inhabitants),twoprimaryschools,vechurchesandfourlocal
healthcentres.

GENERAL DATA ON WEST TIMOR, INDONESIA
NusaTenggaraTimur
Kupang
Timor
14,394.90km²
1.7m.
AtoinMeto,Tetum,Bunak,Kemak
Indonesian,UabMeto,Helong,Rotinese,
Tetum
55%Catholic,34%Protestant,8%Muslim;
ancestorworshipandbeliefinspiritsarewidespread
Agriculture(40%GNP;68,5%of
workingpop.),trade(15,9%;6,5%),construction(7%;
2,4%),transportandcommunications(6,2%;4%),
manufacturingindustry(1,7%,8,2%),mining(1,3%;
0,8%),electricity,gas(0,4%;0,1%)



Westmonsoon/rainyseason(Nov.oApril),
eastmonsoon/Dryseason(MaytoOct).
 
The population has lived from subsistence farming for
generations, making them very dependent on the natural
environment. They also have vegetables gardens and
orchards,keepanimals,trade on a smallscaleandpractise
home industries. Very few families sh in the nearby sea.
Apart from agricultural and animal produce, goods are
manufactured for sale, including woven goods, palm leaf
containers,artsandcrafts,coconutoilandsweets.Carpentry
products and construction material from the putak palm,
rewood, coconut seedlings, betel nuts and cigarettes are
alsotraded.Afewfamiliesusetheelectricitysupplyavailable
atnight toproduceicecream.Otherssellsalt,producedby
boiling sea water for hours. This method of “boiling salt”
entailschoppingdownlargenumbersoftreesforrewood.
Originally thesoil wasvery fertile,attracting acontinually
increasingpopulation sincethe 1960s. In 1960, there were
78householdsinthevillage;within10years,thegurehad
risen to 180. As a result,Toineke’spopulation is amixture
ofethnicgroupsfromdifferentplaces.Thegreatmajorityof
thevillagers live in smallone tothreeroom houses,made
ofwood (frame and roof timbers),dried putakpalm twigs
(walls) and palm stalks (roong). The oor is usually of
tampedearth.Cookingtakesplaceonthreestonesinthere
ontheoor.Moremodernwooden,stoneorconcretehouses
aretheexception.

VI.3 PERCEPTIBLE LOCAL IMPACTS OF
CLIMATE CHANGE
Untilthe1980s,the WestTimorese climate was typiedbya
relativelyreliable divisionintoa dryseason from May toOc-
toberandarainyseasonfromNovembertoApril.Thestartof
therainyseasonwasmarkedbyseveraldaysofconstantrain.
Farmersstartedplanting aftertwoorthreedays of continual
rain.
However,sincetheearly1990s,Toineke’spopulationhasob-
served massive local alteratio nsin th e climate. Since then,
thedryseasonhasbeengetting longer and the villagesuf-
feredseveralprolongeddroughts,lastingthewholeyear(in
1992,1994,1995,1997,1998,2006,2007and2008).Fourof
thesevenvillagewellsdriedoutbetween1992and1995,so
fetchingwater involved farmore effort. The extratime re-
quiredhadnegativeeffectsonhomeindustries,watershort-
ages reduced harvests in vegetable and fruit gardens and
damaged the health of people and animals. Field har vests
werealsobadlyaffected.Peoplesoldtheirsmalleranimals,
oodingthemarketandresultinginfallingprices.Thesitu-
ationforagriculturerecoveredsomewhatbetween1997and
2006, w ith a pattern of two years of extended dry season
followedbyayearwithagoodrainyseason.
Onthe eveningof16May2000,a rapidlyrisingoodinun-
datedthevillage.Thehousesatgroundlevelwerestanding
inwatercontainingloamandsomesaltysedimentsforupto
two months. The ooddestroyed elds,vegetable gardens



 
and home industries, damaged houses and washed away
possessions; many animals drowned. The standing water
broughtmosquitoesanddiseases,inparticular malariaand
diarrhoealdiseases,butalsodenguefever.Inpartsofthevil-
lage,wellsandsoilwerecontaminatedwithsalt.
Thevillagehadpreviouslyonlyexperiencedoodingin1972
and1990;villagersstatedthattheearlieroodswerenothing
incomparisonwiththatof2000.Sincethen,thevillagehas
beeninundatedseveraltimeseveryyearbetweenDecember
andMay,thoughnotonthescaleofthe2000ood.Thewa-
terandsedimentremainforuptothreeweeksinsomeparts
ofthevillage.Thevillagersdifferentiatebetweenwaterand
sedimentfromthemountain and from the riverintheiref-
fectsfor agriculture.Mountainwaterisconsideredpositive
andfruitful,whereasriverwaterismixedwithseawaterand
damagesagriculture.
Comparedtothe dryperiodsinthe1990s,therainyseason
hasbeenmorereliablesince2000.However,theprecisetim-
ing and duration are not reliable. In some years, the rain


CASE STUDY: IBU YANSE TON
Since2000,thefamilyhasgotusedtotheoodsbutdoes
notat temptanypreventivemeasuresorp ursueanylonger-
termadaptivestrategy.Instead,IbuYanseleavesherhouse
whenthewaterrisesandstayswithrelativeswholiveon
higherground.Whenthewaterlevelfallsandherhouseis
nolongerooded,shereturnsandgetsridofthesediment
andanywaterleft.IbuYanseexplainsthiswiththelackof
nancial andhumancapital.“It’salreadyhardenoughto
get food eachday. How could we plan tobuilda secure
houseaswell?”Sheusedtokeepsmallanimals(particu-
larly chickens).“Now the oods makeit moredifcult to
earnalittlemoremoney.”Whenthewaterandsediment
destroytheharvestyetagain,shegatherswildcassavaand
tamarindseedsintheforestasfoodsubstitutes.However,
thatisalsobecomingmoredifcult.Thereislessandless
wildcassavaintheforest,shereports.
Ibu Yanse Ton (age unknown, 2 years primary school,
widowed,4adultchildren)liveswithherson,hiswifeand
twochildreninabadlydamagedhousebuildoflocalma-
terialsatgroundlevel,intheregularlyoodedpartofthe
village. In2000, the ood washedaway all their posses-
sions,theiranimalsweredrownedandpartsofthehouse
collapsed . Her family fell ill wi th malaria and diarr hoea,
necessitatingaweekinhospital.
     
     
 
startsinOctoberbutthenstops.PakMartinusTaneosays,“In
thepast,whenthe rainy season started,it didn’t stop rain-
ing.Nowitrains,weplantoureldsandthentherainstops,
sometimesuntilJanuary orFebruary”.Thesubsequentheat
kills the newly sown plant s, so that when the rains return
inDecember or January,newseedshaveto be boughtand
planted.TheBircheffect,theincreasedrelease of nutrients
toplantsaftertherstrain,whichisresponsiblefor30%of
theharvest,islost(Wood1995:76).Inotheryears,therain
doesnotstartuntilthesecondweekinDecemberorinJanu-
ary and thencontinues untilMay.Since2005, thevillagers
haveobservedthattherainyseasonisgettinglongeragain,
sometimeslastingfromOctobertoMay.However,duringthis
periodtherainfallsinshort,abruptphases,followedbydays
withoutrain.Thisisoftencombinedwithooding.Inthelast
threeyears,incontrast,thedryseasonswereextremelylong
andhot, like the droughtsin the 1990s.However,it rained
occasionally,whichisunusualforthedryseason.

 


  
 
VI.4 COPING AND ADAPTATION STRATEGIES
The increasing irregularity of the weather endangers agri-
cultureand solivelihoodsecurity.However,thelocalsdonot
seethesealterationsinthe context ofglobalclimatechange.
Theyperceivethemasconcrete changes inthelocalenviron-
mentandweatheranddiscussthem in these terms.Twofre-
quently heard sentences are, “alam sudah berubah” (nature
haschanged)and“musimsudahberubah”(theseasonshave
changed).Some villagers also see the changes as God’sway
ofchallengingthem to ndwaystolivein future withthese
changes.
Sofarthevillagershaveundertakenavarietyofcollectiveef-
fortstostemtheooding,butwithverylittlesuccess.There
is no long-term adaptation strategy for the whole vill age,
thoughpossibilitiesarebeingdiscussedwiththesupportof
thirdparties.
At an individual level, a number of successful short-term
copingstrategieshavebeendeveloped,measurestopredict
changes in the weather and some longer-term adaptation
strategies.Amongtheshort-termmeasures,thepopulation
falls back on tradit ional ways of securing food in times of
hunger. However, because this has been more frequently
necessaryinrecentyears,theresourcesusedforthisstrategy
arebeingoverstretched.
Preventive measures to avert the
impacts of climate change
The villagers haveattempted toundertakesome measures
to inuence their surroundings and the vill age location so
thattheyarelessaffectedbycurrentclimatechangeimpacts
–suchastoprotectthe villagefromooding.Forexample,
inJuly2000thevillageelders attempted toarrangeforthe
villagetoberelocated.However,thisfailedbecauseitwould
havebeennecessarytonegotiatewiththeministryforagri-
CASE STUDY: PAK AUGUSTINUS LEBISA UND
IBU NAEMA BANOET
Pak Augustinus Lebisa and
Ibu Naema Banoet (age
unknown,married,no chil-
dren) live in a small, one-
roomedhousemadeoflocal
materials, furnished with
a wooden bench, wooden
bed andopen cooking re.
Theystoremaizeunderthe
roof in the traditional way.
They originally come from
Kollbana and Nununamat, but set up home in Toineke.
Unfortunatelytheyhadnochildren.Today,IbuNaema(no
schooling)has been blind for two years andPakAugusti-
nus(threeyearsprimaryschool)ishardofhearing.Distant
relativescultivate theirone hectare of landon the hillin
exchangefor 20 kilogrammesofmaizeayear.Thisisnot
enoughtoliveon,butPakAugustinusandIbuNaemacan
nolongercultivatethelandthemselves.Instead,theykeep
animals.Theirvecowsdrownedin2000.Nowadaysthey
keepapigandtwohens.
Ibu Naemasays: “When we wereyoung, we grew maize
anditourished.Nowadaysit’stoohotanddry,followed
by oods.” When Pak Augustinus senses that the rains
arecoming, he buildsa stable onstilts. Heand his wife,
however,waituntilthewatercomesandthenclimbonto
their roof. The sediment the water brings is often over
theirknees,soIbuNaemacooksontherooffordays.They
wouldliketobuildahouseonstilts,buttheyhaveneither
thematerialsnorthestrength.
PakAugustinusandIbuNaemahavenoaccesstostatesys-
temsofsocialsecurity,nordotheyhavefamilytoprovide
forthem.Theiropportunitiesofadjustingtothechanged
conditionsareminimal.PakAugustinusexplains,“Weare
old.Wehavenomoney.Wearewaitingtodie.
     
 
cultureandforestry in Jakarta, which is responsibleforthe
land they hoped touse. Thecurrent village head explains:
“Forone thing, wehaven’tenoughmoney toytoJakarta
andfor another,we are littlepeople without much educa-
tion. We can’t meet with rich, intelligent people.“ In the
sameyear,thedistrictgovernmentbegantodredgetheriver
annually.Howeverthesedimentllsuptheriverbedagain,
sothisdoesnotpreventooding.
In2004,thevillagebuilta5,600metrelongcanalabovethe
village,topreventthesediments and waterbroughtbythe
oodsfromreachingthevillage.Theyreceivedfundingfrom
anIndonesianNGOforthisproject.Theone-meterdeepbar-
rierwasbuiltbyhand–butoneoodwassufcienttollit
in.Thepresentvillageheadconsidersthatitwasbuiltinthe
wrongdirection,sothewatercollectedinitinsteadofow-
ingawaytowardstheriver.
In2006/2007,thevillagersplantedabout20,000treesatthe
foot of the mountain behind the vill age, where the forest
hadbeengraduallyclearedinthepreviousdecades.Thenext
dryperiodkilledhalfthetrees.Sincethen,thevillageelders
havenotplannedtoplantanymoretreesaboveToineke.
Short-term reactive coping strategies
Other measures were reactive, consisting of immediate,
short-term responses to acute dangers. M ost of the strate-
gies mentioned here are traditional coping measures for
periodsofshortages.Theyarerootedintraditionalpractices
andlocalknowledge.Tosomeextent,theyarethesameas
theeverydaylivelihoodstrategiesbut are used moreinten-
sivelywhenfoodisscarce:
If ooding occurs, climbing onto the roof or staying
withrelativeswhoarenotaffected;
 lookingforfoodintheforest(e.g.Putakpalmpith,tam-
arindseeds,wildcassava);
 sellinganimalstobuyfood–sacricinglong-termcapi-
talforshort-termsurvival;
 productionandsaleofcoconutoil,saltandpalmwine
(IrisTuak),kapok(plant-derivedmattresslling)andpe-
lepah(constructionmaterialfromtheputakpalm);
 shinginthesea
 searchingfortemporaryworkinsurroundingtowns(as
householdworkers,motorcycletaxidrivers,tofusellers
etc.);
 takingchildrenoutofschool;spendingtheschoolbook
moneyonfood;
 duringoods:notsendingchildrentoschoolforfearof
furtheroodwavesanddrowning.
Future oriented coping strategies
Future oriented coping strategies are implemented before
oodingordrought,tobepreparedforthesetimesofscarci-
ty.However,theyarealsochosenbecausetheyarerelatively
easyandcheaptocarryout.Thelocalsdonotknowwhether
orwhentheoodsordroughtsmayreturnandwhetherthe
newclimatewill stabilizeorchangefurther,sotheychoose
thecheaper provisionalmeasuresrather than themore ex-
pensiveadaptation.Relativelyshort-termreactivestrategies
arementionedaboveallinconnectionwithdrought,whereas
thelonger-termcopingstrategiesaremoreimportantwhen
facingtheoods:
 “WhenIseeblackclouds,Iputallourpossessionsupin
theroof: tax return,marriagecerticate,baptism and
conrmationcerticates,schoolreportsandclothes.”
 Elevatingthecookingandsleepingaccommodationand
theanimals’quarters;
 Keepingcleantominimizethedangerofcontagion;
 Laying in stocksofKayuular(snakewood,Lat.:Strych-
noslucida)for malariaoutbreaks (boiled inwater; the
liquidisdrunk);

 

 Stockinguponrewood,drinkingwaterinclosedcon-
tainers,waterforwashing,lamppetroleum;
 Plantingvegetablesinpartsofthegardenwhichdonot
becomeooded;
 Takinganimals(torelatives)tohigherground.
Long-term adaptation strategies
Long-termadaptationstrategies(asopposedtocopingstrat-
egies) for climate change impacts are more expensive, so
people’s ability to adopt these strategies depend on many
factors: income, social networks, access to other land, re-
quiredknowledge,aswellaspersonalreadinesstomakede-
cisionsandadoptinnovations.Tousethevocabularyofthe
vulnerabilityperspective(seeSectionIV.3),itdependsonthe
availablenancial,social,physicalandnaturalcapital.
ThemostcommonadaptationstrategyinToinekeistoadopt
differentcropsandplantingtimes.Insteadofthetraditional
maize,riceisincreasinglyoftensown.Maizeplantsgrowwell
intheoods, buttheharvest ispoor.Riceseed(paddy go-
rah),ontheotherhand,ourishedlastyear;asaresult,some
villagersareconsideringterracingandirrigationsystems.
Maizeisstill cultivatedon higherground. Green beansare
alsocentralto food security.Inthe last fewyear,thebeans
plantedintherainyseason either drowned in theoods or
weredestroyed by sediments orsalt water.Toprevent this
happening again, the vill agers are planting a fast-growing
beanvariety at thestartof and during therainy season in
areaslessaffectedbyooding.Theycanharvesttheseplants
beforetherstoods,soprotectingthemfromsediments.
Thewomendescribediversication of varieties in fruitand
vegetable production. Fruit varieties which grow on tall
plants or trees, such asbananas, coconutsand sugarcane,
arebecomingmoreimportant.Vegetablesdonotsurvivethe
oods, so they are only grown during the r ainyseason by
farmerswhoselandislocatedhigherup,andinthedrysea-
 


       
 
sonby those whohaveaccessto good water.Tospreadthe
riskinthedryseason,awiderrangeofdifferentvegetables
iscultivated.
Thevillagershavealsoextendedtherangeofitemsproduced
inhomeindustries,particularlyintheuseofproductsgained
fromresources not affected by theoods (e.g.coconut oil,
coconutseedlings,coconutlampshadesetc.).
Finally,some villagers have beguntoestablishasecondary
source of income as carpenters, motorcycle tax i drivers or
openingakiosk,inadditiontosubsistenceagriculture.This
showsthatsomeofthelocalpopulationalreadyperceivethe
impacts of climate changesoclearly that their dependence
on agriculture seems too r isky. Pract ising small scale trad-
ingandhome industriestogenerate income inaddition to



CASE STUDY: IBU YANSE LAK ABU
havehergardenterracedandtousethewaterowingpast
herhouseforricegrowing.
Inherview,thealterationsinthenaturalenvironmentare
go d - givenandit isthev il l agerstasktor eactappro pr iatel y.
Terracing the village could make use of the god-given
oodwatertocultivaterice,whichisalsothegoaldened
byBupati.
IbuYanseseesitasessentialtoretainherabilitytoactin
thefaceofdroughtsandooding.Thepriorityistosecure
foodforpeopleandanimals.Knowledgeiscentral,inher
view.“Ihaveplentyofthingstosell,butifIdon’tknowthe
prices,I will be cheated by theJavanese or people from
Flores.”In her opinion, knowledge enables people to act
andndsolutions;sheseesthisasmuchmoreimportant
intheattempttoadaptsuccessfullyandtosurviveunder
the changed conditions than nancial resources (e.g. to
raisehousesonstilts)orpersonalnetworks(e.g.toaccess
landinhigherlocations).
IbuYanseLakabu(62),daugh-
ter of a Protestant pastor,
widowoftheformervillage
policeman, retired teacher
and mother of the current
villageschoolteacher,isone
of the better-educated and
better-offvillagers.Shelives
with her daughter and two
grandchildreninahouseon
“jalanair”,oneofthewater-
ways created by the an nual
oods. She plans to pay to
     
     
 
subsistence farming is not a new strategy, but the increas-
ingimportanceoftheseincomesourcesindicatestheoften
predictedexodusfromagriculturalproduction.Thistypically
beginswiththedevelopment ofalternative income sources
inruralareas(initiallyastrategytoavoidimmediatemigra-
tion)andendswiththelarge-scalemigrationofyoungpeo-
plefromruralareasintothelargecitiesoftheircountry.
In contrast to the situation described in Tanzania, the vil-
lagersinToinekeseemtoconcentratemoreon diversifying
crops,varyingplantingtimesandseekingalternativeincome
sourcesratherthanspecialisinginafew protablebutalso
risky income sources. Three other long-term adaptation
strategieswere observed:rst, moving house, animalsand
cultivatedland;second,raisingthehouseandthird,protect-
ingcultivated land byfencing. The prerequisiteformoving
house,animalsandcultivatedlandisaccesstohigherground
inthevillage.However,mostvillagersdonothaveaccessto
higherground forconstruction, so they concentrate onse-
curing higher land for cult ivation or ask owners to permit
themtocultivatetheirlandforthemandsharetheharvest.
Successinthesecasesdependsonsocialcapitalsuchasfam-
ilyrelationshipsandpersonalnetworks.Toraisethehouses,
localconstructionmaterials(woodenpillars)orhome-made
cementblocks are useddepending onincome.Fencing the
vegetable gardens is intended to protect the cultivated ar-
easfromoodwater,sedimentsandbranchescarriedbythe
oods.
As well as these positive adaptation measures, there are
some negative adapt ations or maladaptations (see Sec tion
IV.2). One example is salt boiling, as already mentioned,
whichrequireslargeamountsofrewood.PakNohHun(45)
describes howhisfamilycarriesout traditionalsubsistence
agricultureaswellassaltproduction.However,oodinghas
made agriculture so dif cult that they are increasingly de-
pending on salt production fortheir livelihood. The use of
the forest around the village for  rewood not only causes






 

     
     
     
 
additionalCO2emissions;thelocalecosystemisalsofurther
stressedandthevillagehaslesserosionprotection.Another
maladaptionwithseriousconsequencesistakingthechildren
out of school, in order to buy food w ith the money saved
fromthefees.Thisreduces the children’sabilitytofacethe
challengesofthefuture;knowledgeandinnovativethinking
areofcentralimportancewhendealingwiththeimpactsand
uncertaintiescausedbyclimatechange.
CASE STUDY: PAK YANDRI A. NENO
UND IBU ANTONIA MISA
ometerstohigherground.HecalledhisnewdaughterAiti
Mena,whichinUabMetomeans,“whowillcarryher?”The
ooddestroyedtheirhouse andtheircow,calf,hensand
goats were drownedor died later from the after-effects.
Pak Yandri turn ed to the village chi ef to ask permission
tobuildanewhouseabovethevillageonlandwhichhad
oncebe-longed tohisfather.Todayhehasaquarterhec-
tareofvegetablegardenaroundhisnewhouse,ahectare
on thehill for maize and a quarterhectare near the old
house.Heplanstoplantriceonthelower-lyinglandnext
rainyseason.Hissocialcapitalintheformofconnections
andfamilypossessionshasenabledhimtosecurealong-
termincomeforhisfamily.
It is a recurr ing problem for Pak Yandr i to nd the cash
forschoolfees.Forsomereason,hereceivesnothingfrom
thestatefund (KeluargaHarapanprogramme)set upfor
such situations (114 of the 680 households receive Rp.
200,000.00 per childper quarter). SoPak Yandri andIbu
Miasellcassavarootsandleavesattheweeklymarketand
PakYandrialsoworksintheeldsandasacarpenter.The
move away from the village centre makes the job hunt
moredifcult.Hehastovisitpossibleemployersregularly,
whereaspreviouslyhesawthemeverydayanyway.
P a k Ya n d r i A . N e n o (4 7, c o m -
pleted grammar school),
Ibu Antonia Misa (43) and
their four children were
caught by surprise in their
house by the ood on the
evening of 16 May 2000,
threedaysafterthebirthof
theirfourthchild.Withina
fewminutes,thewaterrose
chest high. Pak Yandri lift-
edhiswifeandthebabyto
safetyonatwo-meterhigh
roof beam. Next morning
he carried them three kil-




     
     
 
VI.5 TOINEKE: AN EXAMPLE OF LIFE IN POVERTY IN
CONDITIONS OF CLIMATE CHANGE
The people of Toineke are currently living under constantly
changing climatic conditions which have direct, immediate
conseqencesforagriculture,thebasisoftheirexistence.Their
methodsofdealing withthesituationexemplifymanyofthe
linksmentionedbetweenpovertyandclimatechange.
Likesubsistencefarmersinmanyothercountries,thefarmers
of Toineke aree xtremely dependent on their natural envi-
ronment.Climatechange signiesdirectdamagecausedby
droughtandoodingaswellasincreasingclimaticuncertain-
ty.Theyarebecomingevermorevulnerable,bothbecauseit
isnotclearhowtheyshouldbestreactandalsobecausethey
simplylackthemoney.Theyonlyachievepartialsuccesses:
smallinnovations(suchastheprotectivefencesaroundtheir
elds),lesseningtherisksbyplantingmoreordifferentcrops
etc.
Variousformsofknowledge arecrucialtoenablepeopleto
maintaintheircapacitytoactandcope withtheuncertain-
tiescausedbyclimatechange.Localknowledgeoftraditional
strategiestobeusedintimesofscarcityareimportant(e.g.
using the putak palm for food). Local innovati ons (such as
protective fencing around the gardens, raising houses on
stilts) and external knowledge (e.g. new varie ties of seed)
arealsosignicant.Inaddition,thepopulationrequiresthe
basicunderstandingorawarenessthatchangesintheirliving
conditionsaremore extensiveandlonger-lastingthanthey
have ever experienced. Lack of knowledge about climate
changeasa global process delaysthe developmentof local
adaptation strategies and makes it more dif cult, because
thelocalsconcentratetheirfewresourcesonshort-termpro-
visionalcopingstrategies.
These various forms of knowledge are combined in daily
dealingswithimpacts of climate change withmoreorless
success,workingtogethertoenablepeopletodevelopcop-
ingandadaptationstrategies.In this way,local knowledge
adjuststothedemandsofclimatechangeimpacts.Thekey
factorishowexibleandinnovativepeopleareinthinking
abouttheirsituation.Thecasestudiespresentedshowclearly
thatsuccessiscloselyrelatedtothedegreeofformaleduca-
tionreceived;themajorityofthosewhohavedevelopednew
strategiesandtechniqueshadbeentosecondaryschool.This
meansthatpovertyreductioneffortsshouldmakeeducation
availabletoenablepeopletoimplementtheknowledgethey
alreadyhave,newideasandtheircapacitytochange.
People’s ability to react to climate change also depend on
howprosperoustheyalreadyare.Inthisway,climatechange
deepens the gulfbetweenthe poor and thebetter-off and
leadsto new inequalities, both withinvillage communities
andbetweenvillages,regionsandcountries.Thebetter-off
familieswereoftenabletoutilizetheircapital–social,nan-
cial (see section IV.3)–to counter thechanging conditions
successfullyandinsomecases,eventousethempositively.
Others, such asIbu Yanse Ton and PakAugustinus andIbu
Naema,loseeventhelittlelivelihoodbasetheyhad.Insuch
cases, climate changeimpactsresult in a huge overload of
people’slivelihoodstrategiesandcopingcapacity.


 
Thefollowingrecommendationsareprimarilyrelatedtothe
workoforganizationssuchasCAREinternational.Although
theyweremainlyimplementedaslocalmeasuresandprojects
carriedoutdirectlyincooperationwithpoorerpopulations,
variousconclusionscanbedrawnfromthemforthenational
orinternationallevel.
Community-basedadaptation.Povertyreductionshould
encourageadaptationtonewlivingandeconomiccondi-
tions.Thisshouldtakeplaceatlocallevelandwithlocal
participation, and, aboveall,shouldbe basedonexist-
inglocalcopingandadaptationstrategies.Thesemay(or
maynot)begoodstartingpointsforlocalmeasuresand
“homegrown”bestpracticesforotherorganizationsand
projects.
 Supportinglocalknowledge.Detailedlocalknowledge
ofecosystems andalternative options shouldbe gath-
eredandupdated.Itisimportanttogainnewknowledge
aboutadaptation optionsonthe spot. It isalsoimpor-
tanttocreateawarenessthatcurrentweathervariations
arepartofaglobalprocesswhichissettocontinue.Vil-
lage communitieslike Toineke must be encouraged to
test the ir knowledge to  see how far it w ill help the m
to deal with climate change impacts. The experience
of other regions with ooding or drought should be
shared. “Global”knowledge, e.g.ndingsfromclimate
research,must be madeavailable, soit can berelated
tolocal knowledge. Theremust be a continuous proc-
ess of updating local climate managementknowledge,
becausetheclimate isnotlikelytostabilizeinthenear
future.
 Criticalanalysisofexistingpractices.Existingcopingand
adaptation mechanisms may have become widespread
and may be assumed to be in the interests of at least
somegroups.However,theyshouldbeexaminedinthe
contextofthevecriteriamentionedabove–effective-
ness, exibility, fairness, ef ciency and sustainability –
particularly in relation tothe poorest.For example, an
adaptationmechanismmaybesuccessfulandalso“home
grown”.However,itmayatthesametimeexacerbatein-
equalityandsoincreaseabsolutepoverty.Itmaybewell
established,butpossiblybymorepowerfulgroupsandto
thedisadvantageofwomenormarginalsocialgroups.
 Raisingawarenessforclimatechangeimpactswhichare
notyetacute.Finally,adaptationprocessesshouldbeena-
bled,evenwheretheydonotappearurgent.Itisessential
toraiseawarenessofthefactthatclimatechangeisnot
alwaysdramatic;itcanalsotakeplacegradually.People
arealreadyawareofsomeclimatechangeimpacts.Oth-
ersarenotyetknownordealingwiththemispostponed
infavourofothertaskswhichseemmoreurgent.
 Recognizinguncertainties.Projectionsofclimatechange
processesand impactsgive theimpressionthat poverty
reduction can be based on concrete weather develop-
ments. However this cannot be taken for granted, be-
causethemodelsareuncertainandtheclimatechange

VII. Recommendations:
poverty reduction in times of climate change
 
process depe nds on humanity’s futur e actions. Mak ing
poverty reduction measures climate secure does not
meanbasingthemononeprojection.First,itisnotclear
howpeoplewillreacttothemeasuresandwhetherthey
willbeeffective,eveniftheclimatepredictionsareful-
lled. Second,the climatemight developinunforeseen
ways. Poverty reduction strategies are climate secure
onlyiftheyhavepositiveeffectsinvariousscenarios(no
regretcriterion).
 Carefulhandlinginthefaceoftheurgencyofadaptation
to climate change imp acts. The pressur e to implement
adaptationmeasuresis enormous:however,thisshould
notleadtoimposingstrategiesonthelocalpopulation,
ignoring their local knowledge and existing adaptation
practices.Nor shoulditleadto hastyxingonparticular
scenariosasabasisforquickandapparentlysuitablemeas-
ures.Thisdoesnotmeanunderestimatingtheurgencyof
climate change; on the contrary, it means guaranteeing
thatmeasuresarereallyeffectiveandsustainable.
 Poverty reductionmeansmaintainingbasiccapacityfor
action.Inordertoberealisticandtoconcentrateefforts,
povertyreductionshouldconcentrateonthepoorestand
onmaintainingtheirbasiccapabilityofaction.Thepopu-
lation’sresilienceshouldbestrengthenedgenerally,not
just in relat ion to specic r isks. It is likely that climate
change will cause even morerapidreactions in future,
soitisimportanttofocusontheshort-sightedmaladap-
tations. Governments must al so maintain room to ma-
noeuvre,tocopewithclimatechangeandpoverty.The
economiceffectsofclimatechangemustnotbeallowed
tocausefurtherreductionsinstatefundingforpoverty
reduction.Development aid canbe a temporarysource
ofassistanceduringtheglobaleconomicdownturnand
nancialcrisis.
 Broad-based, in-depth analysis of climate change im-
pacts and measures. As the c ase studies show,climate
changeimpactsandadaptationmechanisms oftenhave
unexpectedconsequences.Someapparentlyappropriate
suggestions such as diversifying income sources have
turnedouttobecounter-productive.Organizationstack-
lingpovertyshouldinvestsufcientlyinresearchtoesti-
matethecomplexconsequences.Theyshouldtakeeven
more careful accountof particular local conditions and
thewaysin which ecosystemsandsocialsystems inter-
act.Holisticanalysisis essential to cover alltheinterac-
tionsasfully,evenifnotasprecisely,aspossible.





 
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 

IMPRINT
CAREDeutschland-Luxemburge.V.
CenterforDevelopmentResearch(ZEF)
Dr.FabianScholtes,
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Article
The present research paper provides background information for the upcoming Human Development Report 2011 "Sustaining Equitable Progress". It has been written for Human Development Report Office, UNDP, and thus presupposes some basic knowledge of both the so-called Human Develop-ment and Capability Approach (HDCA) and of sustainability. The contribution of this paper lies in analysing HDCA as a conceptual background. This paper was written on commission by, and with support from, the Human Development Report Office of UNDP and was approved in the present version.
Article
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We discuss approaches to the assessment of vulnerability to climate variability and change and attempt to clarify the relationship between the concepts of vulnerability and adaptation. In search of a robust, policy-relevant framework, we define vulnerability in terms of the capacity of individuals and social groups to respond to, that is, to cope with, recover from or adapt to, any external stress placed on their livelihoods and well-being. The approach that we develop places the social and economic well-being of society at the centre of the analysis, focussing on the socio-economic and institutional constraints that limit the capacity to respond. From this perspective, the vulnerability or security of any group is determined by resource availability and by the entitlement of individuals and groups to call on these resources. We illustrate the application of this approach through the results of field research in coastal Vietnam, highlighting shifting patterns of vulnerability to tropical storm impacts at the household- and community-level in response to the current process of economic renovation and drawing conclusions concerning means of supporting the adaptive response to climate stress. Four priorities for action are identified that would improve the situation of the most exposed members of many communities: poverty reduction; risk-spreading through income diversification; respecting common property management rights; and promoting collective security. A sustainable response, we argue, must also address the underlying causes of social vulnerability, including the inequitable distribution of resources.
Article
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Increasing sea surface temperatures in the tropical Atlantic Ocean and measures of Atlantic hurricane activity have been reported to be strongly correlated since at least 1950 (refs 1, 2, 3, 4, 5), raising concerns that future greenhouse-gas-induced warming could lead to pronounced increases in hurricane activity. Models that explicitly simulate hurricanes are needed to study the influence of warming ocean temperatures on Atlantic hurricane activity, complementing empirical approaches. Our regional climate model of the Atlantic basin reproduces the observed rise in hurricane counts between 1980 and 2006, along with much of the interannual variability, when forced with observed sea surface temperatures and atmospheric conditions. Here we assess, in our model system, the changes in large-scale climate that are projected to occur by the end of the twenty-first century by an ensemble of global climate models, and find that Atlantic hurricane and tropical storm frequencies are reduced. At the same time, near-storm rainfall rates increase substantially. Our results do not support the notion of large increasing trends in either tropical storm or hurricane frequency driven by increases in atmospheric greenhouse-gas concentrations.
Article
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1] The Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change (IPCC) confirmed concentrations of atmospheric greenhouse gases and radiative forcing to increase as a result of human activities. Nevertheless, changes in radiative forcing related to increasing greenhouse gas concentrations could not be experimentally detected at Earth's surface so far. Here we show that atmospheric longwave downward radiation significantly increased (+5.2(2.2) Wm À2) partly due to increased cloud amount (+1.0(2.8) Wm À2) over eight years of measurements at eight radiation stations distributed over the central Alps. Model calculations show the cloud-free longwave flux increase (+4.2(1.9) Wm À2) to be in due proportion with temperature (+0.82(0.41) °C) and absolute humidity (+0.21(0.10) g m À3) increases, but three times larger than expected from anthropogenic greenhouse gases. However, after subtracting for two thirds of temperature and humidity rises, the increase of cloud-free longwave downward radiation (+1.8(0.8) Wm À2) remains statistically significant and demonstrates radiative forcing due to an enhanced greenhouse effect.
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This article reviews the recent literature on diversification as a livelihood strategy of rural households in developing countries, with particular reference to sub-Saharan Africa. Livelihood diversification is defined as the process by which rural families construct a diverse portfolio of activities and social support capabilities in order to survive and to improve their standards of living. The determinants and effects of diversification in the areas of poverty, income distribution, farm output and gender are examined. Some policy inferences are summarised. The conclusion is reached that removal of constraints to, and expansion of opportunities for, diversification are desirable policy objectives because they give individuals and households more capabilities to improve livelihood security and to raise living standards.
Article
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Article 2 of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change [United Nations (1992) http://unfccc.int/resource/docs/convkp/conveng.pdf. Accessed February 9, 2009] commits signatory nations to stabilizing greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that "would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference (DAI) with the climate system." In an effort to provide some insight into impacts of climate change that might be considered DAI, authors of the Third Assessment Report (TAR) of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) identified 5 "reasons for concern" (RFCs). Relationships between various impacts reflected in each RFC and increases in global mean temperature (GMT) were portrayed in what has come to be called the "burning embers diagram." In presenting the "embers" in the TAR, IPCC authors did not assess whether any single RFC was more important than any other; nor did they conclude what level of impacts or what atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases would constitute DAI, a value judgment that would be policy prescriptive. Here, we describe revisions of the sensitivities of the RFCs to increases in GMT and a more thorough understanding of the concept of vulnerability that has evolved over the past 8 years. This is based on our expert judgment about new findings in the growing literature since the publication of the TAR in 2001, including literature that was assessed in the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report (AR4), as well as additional research published since AR4. Compared with results reported in the TAR, smaller increases in GMT are now estimated to lead to significant or substantial consequences in the framework of the 5 "reasons for concern."
Article
In 1995, nearly 1400 million people lived in water-stressed watersheds (runoff less than 1000 m3/capita/year), mostly in south west Asia, the Middle East and around the Mediterranean. This paper describes an assessment of the relative effect of climate change and population growth on future global and regional water resources stresses, using SRES socio-economic scenarios and climate projections made using six climate models driven by SRES emissions scenarios. River runoff was simulated at a spatial resolution of 0.5×0.5° under current and future climates using a macro-scale hydrological model, and aggregated to the watershed scale to estimate current and future water resource availability for 1300 watersheds and small islands under the SRES population projections. The A2 storyline has the largest population, followed by B2, then A1 and B1 (which have the same population). In the absence of climate change, the future population in water-stressed watersheds depends on population scenario and by 2025 ranges from 2.9 to 3.3 billion people (36–40% of the world's population). By 2055 5.6 billion people would live in water-stressed watersheds under the A2 population future, and "only" 3.4 billion under A1/B1. Climate change increases water resources stresses in some parts of the world where runoff decreases, including around the Mediterranean, in parts of Europe, central and southern America, and southern Africa. In other water-stressed parts of the world—particularly in southern and eastern Asia—climate change increases runoff, but this may not be very beneficial in practice because the increases tend to come during the wet season and the extra water may not be available during the dry season. The broad geographic pattern of change is consistent between the six climate models, although there are differences of magnitude and direction of change in southern Asia. By the 2020s there is little clear difference in the magnitude of impact between population or emissions scenarios, but a large difference between different climate models: between 374 and 1661 million people are projected to experience an increase in water stress. By the 2050s there is still little difference between the emissions scenarios, but the different population assumptions have a clear effect. Under the A2 population between 1092 and 2761 million people have an increase in stress; under the B2 population the range is 670–1538 million, respectively. The range in estimates is due to the slightly different patterns of change projected by the different climate models. Sensitivity analysis showed that a 10% variation in the population totals under a storyline could lead to variations in the numbers of people with an increase or decrease in stress of between 15% and 20%. The impact of these changes on actual water stresses will depend on how water resources are managed in the future.
Article
In this article, we explore some of the factors that have led to reductions in risk to climate-related hazards in two very distinct sites: the Cayman Islands in the Caribbean and the state of Cearé in NE Brazil. We find that a range of factors have been critical to reduce risk in both regions. These include: (a) flexible, responsive governance; (b) committed and politically active actors; (c) disaster risk management integrated into other social and economic policy processes, and (d) a long-term commitment to managing risk, The authors argue that reducing risk is an important foundation for building adaptive capacity among the poorest segments of society. The features of good disaster risk reduction can act as markers of good governance that are conducive to the design and implementation of deeper structural reform needed to address the root causes of vulnerability.
Article
The idea of coping strategies needs to be regarded with caution, especially when used to identify famine early warning indicators. There is a tendency for "coping strategies' to become shorthand for a complex web of processes at work, making for great confusion in identifying what is being talked about. In the quest to incorporate coping strategies into policymaking and planning, hard choices have to be made between operational feasibility and confronting the intricacies of, indigenous response, close to where the action is; and it is essential to be clear as to what they are. A first step is to distinguish at a conceptual level between coping and adapting. -from Author
Article
In this study, we assessed the impact of sea level rise, one of the most ascertained consequences of global climate change, for water levels in the Vietnamese Mekong Delta (VMD). We used a hydraulic model to compute water levels from August to November - when flooding is presently critical- under sea level rise scenarios of 20 cm (= 20) and 45 cm (= 45), respectively. The outputs show that the contour lines of water levels will be shifted up to 25 km ( 20) and 50 km ( 45) towards the sea due to higher sea levels. At the onset of the flood season (August), the average increment in water levels in the Delta is 14.1 cm ( 20) and 32.2 cm ( 45), respectively. At the peak of the flood season (October), high discharge from upstream attenuates the increment in water level, but average water level rise of 11.9 cm ( 20) and 27.4 cm ( 45), respectively, still imply a substantial aggravation of flooding problems in the VMD. GIS techniques were used to delineate areas with different levels of vulnerability, i.e., area with high (2.3 mio ha =60% of the VMD), medium (0.6 mio ha = 15%) and low (1 mio ha =25%) vulnerability due to sea level rise. Rice production will be affected through excessive flooding in the tidally inundated areas and longer flooding periods in the central part of the VMD. These adverse impacts could affect all three cropping seasons, Mua (main rainfed crop), Dong Xuan (Winter-Spring) and He Thu (Summer-Autumn) in the VMD unless preventive measures are taken.