Download Climate Variability, Climate Change and Social Vulnerability by Jesse C. Ribot, Antonio Rocha Magalhães, Stahis Panagides PDF

By Jesse C. Ribot, Antonio Rocha Magalhães, Stahis Panagides

Weather adjustments can set off occasions that bring about mass migration, starvation, or even famine. instead of specialise in the affects that consequence from climatic fluctuations, the authors examine the underlying stipulations that reason social vulnerability. after we comprehend why members, families, international locations, and areas are weak, and the way they've got buffered themselves opposed to climatic and environmental shifts, then current and destiny vulnerability may be redressed. through the use of case experiences from around the globe, the authors discover earlier stories with weather variability, and the most probably results of--and the prospective coverage responses to--the forms of climatic occasions that international warming may perhaps deliver.

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Purposeful adaptation to climate variation will save costs and 'buy time' needed to develop and implement greenhouse gas reduction strategies (Burton and Cohen 1992). The real opportunity in adaptive strategies, however, lies in their coincidence with long-term development aims. Sustainable development does not have to mean sacrificing increased wellbeing in order to preserve resources. Rather, it can mean insuring wellbeing through measures that conserve and improve productive capacity. Long-term adaptation versus short-term crisis response as droughts come and go, left behind are .

Diversification of local economies also buffers against severe climatic events. In some regions this may mean fostering existing local productive activities or small-scale enterprises, and in others, encouraging regional pockets of industrialization. Such development is aimed at relieving the local pressures on the resource base and building a buffer against the inherent climatic variability of these regions. But diversification and development will accomplish little if the profits they generate are extracted from the regions and/or concentrated in the hands of a few.

In short, the object of vulnerability analysis is to link impact analysis to an understanding of the causes of vulnerability in order to facilitate a meaningful policy process. But, in carrying out such an analysis, one must be extremely careful not to mix correlation with causality. To map out the proximate vulnerability factors, such as location, livelihood, education and income level, tells only part of the story. Without looking at structural causes, such as the way in which the farm economy is embedded within a larger extractive economy, it is difficult to target extractive mechanisms, such as rent structures, sharecropping contracts, usurious credit arrangements, terms of trade and tax structures as causes of vulnerability and environmental decline (de Janvry and Kramer 1979; Deere and de Janvry 1984; Bitoun et ai, this volume).

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