ANALYSIS STEP 3: Analysing climate and disaster risks
The analysis of climate and disaster risks gives us a greater understanding of the impacts of climate variability and climate change on important livelihood resources and activities in the project area. Data and information on the main livelihood resources, as well as seasonal and perennial activities undertaken by the community in the project area, are needed.
This data and information should be disaggregated by gender and other characteristics that are important to vulnerability, in order to identify key climate risks affecting the area and the community, as well as particularly vulnerable livelihood groups and economic sectors. This process will ideally use a combination of secondary research and primary research, including participatory analysis.
Climate Vulnerability and Capacity Analysis (CVCA) Handbook
The vulnerability matrix (p39) is a valuable tool to gather this information. It can be applied in a range of ways to better understand the impact of climate on different income sources, food sources and resources. The coping strategies that are used in response to the impacts can also be draw out of this discussion.
Community-based Risk Screening Tool – Adaptation and Livelihoods (CRiSTAL)
CRiSTAL is a screening tool designed to help project designers and managers integrate risk reduction and climate change adaptation into community-level projects. CRiSTAL was developed by the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD), the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI-US) and Intercooperation. Module 1 is useful for analysis, as it helps project planners and managers understand the links between livelihoods and climate in their project areas.
Analysis Step 3.1: Identify resources important to livelihoods
To sustain their livelihoods, people use a wide range of social, physical, natural, financial and human resources. To analyse livelihoods-climate linkages, those resources most important to livelihoods and adaptation must be identified, keeping in mind different groups in a community will rely on different resources in varying degrees.
Analysis Step 3.2: Analyse impact of current and future climate hazards (events and conditions) on livelihoods
An analysis of the impact of current and future climate hazards on livelihoods, drawing on the climate context completed in the previous step, gives us important information about the priority impacts to be addressed in designing adaptation strategies. This analysis must be considered for different economic and social groups within the community. Climate change should not be treated in isolation. Communities are likely to be facing a range of hazards which include non-climate hazards, and these hazards can interact to increase vulnerability. Therefore, analysis of non-climate-related hazards is also important at this stage and, where appropriate, addressing these can be incorporated into the CBA project design.
Analysis Step 3.3: Evaluate current coping strategies for effectiveness and sustainability
Adaptation strategies should be designed to build on existing coping strategies where appropriate. However, in many cases, the most vulnerable people are employing coping strategies which are neither effective nor sustainable. This step of the analysis must incorporate identification of current coping strategies, and an evaluation of their effectiveness and sustainability (particularly in terms of their effects on ecosystems). This will serve to identify those positive coping strategies which can be used as a foundation for adaptation, and to better understand the types of alternatives that are needed to adapt to a changing climate. In fact, this part of the analysis may highlight options for livelihood diversification, including strategies that are not highly dependent on natural resources.
It is important to note that coping is typically a short-term action during and immediately following a shock. Adaptation on the other hand is a long-term process of planning and management of livelihood resources, either before or during recovery from a climate event, or in response to changing climate conditions (see p. 7 of the CVCA Handbook for a discussion of the differences between coping and adaptation). As with vulnerability and adaptive capacity, coping strategies vary between different communities and groups within communities, so it is important to factor these differences into the analysis.
Analysis Step 3.4: Identify livelihood groups or economic sectors that are particularly vulnerable to climate change
Particularly vulnerable economic sectors may include, but not be limited to, agriculture, fisheries and pastoralism. These sectors are highly dependent on the natural resource base, and are therefore highly sensitive to climate variability and longer term climate change. Within these sectors, specific livelihood groups may be more vulnerable than others. For example, subsistence farmers that are completely dependent on rain-fed agriculture are more susceptible to drought than those with irrigated crops. Pastoralists with a mix of livestock, including more drought-resilient breeds such as camels, may have more capacity to manage drought than those with a single type of animal. In order to ensure that these differences are accounted for, and adaptation activities are targeted appropriately, analysis within sectors is very important.
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