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Community-based adaptation against climate change

Update: 2016-10-18 00:48:17
Community-based adaptation against climate change

COLOMBO, SRI LANKA: Climate change is affecting all level of people and natural resources. In the changing world, natural renewable resources based adaptation can be identified as a great solution. Poor people in the world, especially in the South Asia, are facing most severe impacts of climate change because of economic instability and lack of knowledge on adaptation.

Climate change has impacts on agriculture, animal husbandry, water resources including safe drinking water, energy, health, access to information and others.

It impacts the species diversity of crops. Changing weather patterns such as, irregular rainfall and increase of temperature are affecting yield of seasonal crops badly. In the case of agriculture, South Asian countries can develop adaptation through improving agricultural livelihoods, agro products, market avenues, training and capacity building on sustainable farming practices and technology.

Dumindu Herath, project manager, Integrated development association, Kundasale, Sri Lanka said that, “Because of indoor air pollution, 4 million premature deaths occur in Sri Lanka.”

On the other hand, 50 percent of Sri Lankan population demands energy for their daily activities.

Herath also highlights that, “Improved cook stoves, household industrial stoves, biogas, kitchen improvement, combustion improvement in rural industries or livelihoods in brick making bakeries can be used as solutions to sustainable energy use.”

Atiq Rahman, executive director, Bangladesh Center for Advanced Studies, Dhaka, said “In Bangladesh, 4.5 million people use solar energy.”

In same line about energy management, Zareen Myles, founder member and executive director of women’s action for development, India, stated that, “Five villages in Tehri, Ganhwal, Uttarkhand, Bharatpur and Rajasthan implemented eco village development in biogas technology, solar cooking and solar drying.”

Use of renewable energy skips the impacts of burning fossil fuels. Available renewable sources can be used in community level to ensure sustainable use of resources such as solar energy and make environment pollution free.

Solar energy on the roof of house in Sri Lanka

As community based measures, composting kitchen and garden, production of organic vegetables etc. can be implemented in South Asian countries. In this region, women use to stay inside the house and most of the male members do not support female to go out for earning. House-based or community-based initiatives also could enhance women empowerment.

Mrs. Zareen also stated that, “The Eco-Village Development (EVD) approach in India achieved several goals of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) such as, good health and well being (goal 3), gender equality (goal 5), sustainable energy by using clean biogas plant and new cook stove (goal 5), and climate action because women are applying knowledge and disseminating among all aged people (goal 13).”

Limited or no assessment of community, culture, local knowledge, relationship and resources mapping etc. hinders the proper development and interventions of rural programs with sustainability. Initiating of implementing rural village development program without conducting village dialogue, Pressure and Release Access (PRA) tools and integrated approach remain as obstacles to success.

On the basis of problems, Mr. Dumido recommends using the potentiality of local levels available resources; it may be local budget and strengthening of linkage with development official at grassroots.

Mr. Rahman also highlights that, “Policy is the most acceptance way for making decisions.”

National planning policies in rural development, sustainable planning with mandatory tags can be initiated in rural areas. National policy on biomass development and efficient may help community to run through sustainable way.

Writer MD. Arif Chowdhury, Climate Tracker, Asia Pacific Climate Change Adaptation Forum, 2016.Colombo, Sri Lanka, Contact: +01837304210, email: [email protected]

BDST: 1024 HRS, OCT 18, 2016

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