Large parts of Africa are already affected by extreme climatic events such as droughts and floods resulting from the highly variable climate. This process is expected to become worse as a consequence of longterm changes in the climatic system. Whenever they occur, these extreme events negatively impact livelihoods, especially those of the poor. Local economies also get negatively affected due to the population’s high and direct dependence on natural resources. For instance, over ninety percent of agriculture in Sub-Saharan Africa is rain fed. Indeed, Africa has been identified as one of the most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change.
It is now widely accepted that climate change is a development and environmental challenge. Climate change poses additional problems to degraded environments, high levels of poverty, food insecurity and HIV/AIDS that are already affecting large parts of Africa. Unless this situation is addressed, many vulnerable populations could find their situations worsening, and many countries may not make any progress towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). There is also a risk that the gains made in development thus far may be lost, as climaterelated disasters cause damage and result in myriad losses.
Implementing relevant, effective, and timely climate change adaptation is particularly important for African countries, as it would decrease human suffering, improve livelihoods, human and environmental health, as well as socio-economic development.
In response to these challenges and issues, the African Centre for Technology Studies, in partnership with colleagues in Eastern and Southern Africa, Europe and South Asia are undertaking an action research, testing tools for community adaptation, knowledge generation and capacity building project on Community-Based Adaptation to Climate Change in Africa (CBAA) project. This three year project is being implemented with selected vulnerable communities in Kenya, Malawi, Sudan, South Africa, Tanzania,Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
General objective:- To help communities in the countries identified above, adapt to climate change and share lessons learned from project activities with key stakeholders at local, national, regional and international levels in order to elicit their support for climate change adaptation.
Specific Objectives are to:
• Test the efficacy of Local Options for Communities to Adapt and Technologies to Enhance Capacity (LOCATE) methodology.
• Develop a tried and tested methodology for setting baselines, monitoring and evaluating changes in climate adaptation capacity.
• Reduce the vulnerability and enhance the capacity to adapt to climate change of particularly vulnerable communities in 8 African countries.
• Develop the capacity of relevant stakeholders to mainstream climate change adaptation into plans and activities through knowledge exchanges and information provision.
• Strengthen existing networks to enhance understanding of the climate adaptation needs of vulnerable communities.
• Enlarge the body of knowledge and information on vulnerability and adaptation.
LOCATE methodology, formerly known as the South South North Adaptation Project Protocol (SSNAPP), recognises context specificity of adaptation. It focuses on natural, human and social capital, and disaggregates climate change, vulnerability and adaptation for analysis.
It emphasises the relationship between different income streams of households and the impacts of climate change on these streams, while assessing their vulnerability and adaptation needs. Based on the outcomes of applying the LOCATE methodology pilot community based adaptation projects will be designed and tested. The efficacy of these pilots will be assessed through articipatory monitoring and evaluation methods, focusing on changes in adaptation capacity of the vulnerable. The pilot projects may include dry land livestock and agricultural production, water and forest resource management, environmental services provision and protection from desert encroachment, coastal resources, human health, early warning systems and energy access initiatives.
An assessment of local indigenous knowledge, sociocultural factors and dynamics that affect vulnerability among certain groups in the community, and their capacities to adapt to climate change will be conducted. LOCATE methodology will be tested, adaptation projects designed and pilot projects mobilized in each country.
Implementation of selected community based adaptation projects and dissemination of scientific and nonscientific outputs.
Evaluation. The project will be monitored and evaluated continuously, in a participatory manner.
Expected outcomes of the CBAA project include:
Improved capacity of vulnerable communities in different ecosystems in 8 African countries to understand and appropriately adapt to climate change
Improved capacities of African scientists, research organizations, local and national nongovernmental organizations, decision-makers and policy institutes to conduct action research on climate change vulnerability and adaptation, and appropriate communication of research results to other stakeholders.
Products and tools for integrating climate information into development activities including workshops and dialogues with policy makers and other stakeholders in the 8 countries developed
Targeted and timely information on Community Based Adaptation provided to selected national and international policy processes through the National Adaptation Plans of Action (NAPA) in the pilot project countries, as well as at regional, continental and global levels
Strong and lasting partnerships built among southern organizations to address climate change and trust built with and between vulnerable communities.
PV M&E Training Report
Community Based Adaptation in Africa (CBAA) Project Planning Meeting 4th and 6th March 2008
Community Based Adaptation to climate change workshop proceedings 19th and 20th February 2010
CBAA Annual Report march 2009-April 2010
South African National Networking Meeting on Climate Change Adaptation
Adapting with Enthusiasm: Climate Change Adaptation in the Context of Participatory Action Research
Community based adaptation to climate change (CBAA) workshop proceedings 14th-18th september 2008
Communities and Climate Change: Building Local Capacity for Adaptation in Goromonzi District, Munyawiri ward,Zimbabwe
Locals Adapting to effects of Climate change in Kenya
Community Based Adaptation to Climate Change in Africa (CBAA) Brochure
Farmers moving towards resilience Suid Bokkeveld case study on Climate Change Adaptation (South Africa)
First general meeting: The Adaptation Network, cape Town 4th November 2009