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Fostering coastal resilience to climate change vulnerability in Bangladesh, Brazil, Cameroon and Uruguay: a cross-country comparison

Leal Filho, W and Modesto, F and Nagy, GJ and Saroar, M and YannickToamukum, N and Ha’apio, M (2017) Fostering coastal resilience to climate change vulnerability in Bangladesh, Brazil, Cameroon and Uruguay: a cross-country comparison. Mitigation and Adaptation Strategies for Global Change, 23 (4). pp. 579-602. ISSN 1381-2386

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Abstract

© 2017, Springer Science+Business Media B.V. This paper describes a comparative study of four different cases on vulnerability, hazards and adaptive capacity to climate threats in coastal areas and communities in four developing countries: Bangladesh, Brazil, Cameroon and Uruguay. Coastal areas are vulnerable to sea-level rise (SLR), storm surges and flooding due to their (i) exposure, (ii) concentration of settlements, many of which occupied by less advantaged groups and (iii) the concentration of assets and services seen in these areas. The objective of the paper is twofold: (i) to evaluate current evidence of coastal vulnerability and adaptive capacity and (ii) to compare adaptation strategies being implemented in a sample of developing countries, focusing on successful ones. The followed approach for the case evaluation is based on (i) documenting observed threats and damages, (ii) using indicators of physical and socioeconomic vulnerability and adaptive capacity status and (iii) selecting examples of successful responses. Major conclusions based on cross-case comparison are (a) the studied countries show different vulnerability, adaptive capacity and implementation of responses, (b) innovative community-based (CBA) and ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA) and (c) early warning systems are key approaches and tools to foster climate resilience. A recommendation to foster the resilience of coastal communities and services is that efforts in innovative adaptation strategies to sea-level rise should be intensified and integrated with climate risk management within the national adaption plans (NAPAs) in order to reduce the impacts of hazards.

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