Melting glaciers, denuded slopes, expanding deserts – these images of environmental change have long captured public attention. With the threat of global climate change, the environment has moved from casual concern to the forefront of the international agenda. The scale of change is so great that society must now address the challenges of adapting to an altered environment while at the same time strengthening efforts to prevent further damage.
In 1990 the Intergovernmental Panel on
Climate Change (IPCC) noted that the greatest single impact of climate
change might be on human migration-with millions of people displaced by
shoreline erosion, coastal flooding and agricultural disruption. Since
then various analysts have tried to put numbers of future flows of climate
migrants (sometimes problematically called 'climate refugees')- the most
widely repeated prediction being 200 million forced climate migrants by
This book provides initial insights from an ongoing ISET programme on disaster risk reduction and adaptation to climate change in South Asia. The study is being undertaken in the Nepal Tarai, Eastern Uttar Pradesh, coastal Tamilnadu and coastal Gujarat of India, and the Lai Basin and Muzaffarabad in Pakistan. The programme is financed by the International Development Research Center (IDRC), the U.K. Department for International Development (DFID) and the U.S. National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). IDRC provided support for the field studies in Nepal and India.
Climate change is affecting everybody, regardless of caste, ethnicity, sex, race or level of income. But it is women like Chandrika who are suffering the most, simply because they are women, and women are poorer. Women make up for 70% of the world's poor. They have less access to financial resources, land, education, health and other basic rights than men, and are seldom involved in decision making processes. Women are therefore less able to cope with the impact of climate change and are less able to adapt.
The number of disasters and the scale of
their impacts continue to grow, driven largely by the increasing vulnerability
to natural hazards, but also by the effects of climate change, threatening
the lives and livelihoods of ever more millions of people and the
achievement of the Millennium Development Goals. There is growing urgency
to increase efforts to implement the Hyogo Framework for Action 2005-2015:
Building the Resilience of Nations and Communities to Disasters. The world
is not on track to achieve the aim of a substantive reduction in disaster
losses by 2015.
The Disaster Risk Reduction: 2007 Global Review contrasts and compares contemporary trends and patterns in disaster risk with the progress being made by countries in implementing the priorities for action outlined by the Hyogo Framework.
This Partnership Agreement is the result of an extensive Government led formulation process that used the Medium Term Development Strategy as its cornerstone and constitutes a single and unified United Nations Country Programme (UNCP) for 2008-2012 for UNFPA, UNICEF, UNDP, WHO, UNHCR, UNAIDS, OCHA, OHCHR, IFAD, UNIFEM, ILO, UNESCO, FAO, and UN HABITAT.