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Climate Resilience: Adaptation Measures That Ensure Effective Community Climate Action

Climate change impacts on the local communities are high because they depend primarily on natural resources.

Their dependence on agriculture, forestry, and fishing sectors makes them more vulnerable to climate-related impacts such as droughts, floods, and extreme weather events.

These impacts can lead to significant economic losses, such as crop failure, livestock damage, and indeed food insecurity; threatening the agricultural and water ecosystems, with intensified competition for natural resources.

With climate change and rising natural resource competition, providing food to a growing population has become increasingly challenging.

Thus, a need for the adoption of a locally adapted response that ensures climate resilience practices to ensure adjustments in ecological, social or economic systems in response to actual or expected climatic stimuli and their effects.

To protect people, livelihoods, and ecosystems from climate change, adaptation is a crucial component.

In other words, it means altering processes, practices, or structures to minimise potential damages or to take advantage of climate change opportunities.

Local communities are developing indigenous adaptation solutions and implementing actions to respond to current and future climate change impacts.

The climate resilience of the agroecosystems and socioeconomic livelihood is strengthened by community initiatives for collective action to improve the surrounding natural resources and ecosystems so that it advances the effectiveness of climate-smart agricultural practices and initiatives for a sustainable future.

Local communities approach climate adaptation response in a way that uses several traditional knowledge and indigenous solutions.

Their adaptation capabilities and resilience against climate change can be increased using methods specific to their environment. While national adaptation strategies feature a great deal of high-level planning and policy-making, adaptation at the local level is usually fast-paced and iterative.

Adaptation practices and initiatives of these communities are primarily controlled by different agroecological zones, indigenous/traditional knowledge systems and cultural values.

These adaptation practices have been underway for decades, albeit at a small scale.

Communities are using Indigenous solutions and local knowledge to inform decisions influencing the implementation of the adaptation responses; with evidence increasing of human responses to the impacts of climate change in Africa.

However, understanding the effectiveness of these responses for adaptation to climate change across the diversity of African contexts is still limited.

Despite the high reliance on climate-smart agriculture for climate adaptation by local/rural communities, the potential of indigenous solutions and local knowledge to contribute to adaptation through reducing climate risk or supporting transformative locally-led adaptation responses is yet to be established.

Local People in highly vulnerable areas are up to 15 times more likely to die in floods, droughts, and storms (compared to those in most resilient areas), thus, the need to scale up practices and infrastructure to enhance resilience, via mainstreaming effective and equitable climate action now will reduce losses and damages for nature and people.

Community by community, the impact of climate change and the vulnerability of the locals differ, according to the different regions and environment/weather conditions.

Contextually, they must develop relevant responses to climate risks, with solutions specific to cities and rural areas and the priorities of indigenous peoples. These solutions must be implemented with community priorities and governance at the forefront.

With the environment around us changing in unpredictable ways, people are reinventing their relationship with nature.

This has come with immense creativity that can be tapped into climate-smart adaptation solutions, via learning from local and indigenous knowledge for climate adaptation response.

Local and indigenous solutions add to our understanding of how to manage environmental change. Integrating and valuing the various indigenous knowledge and local solutions will not only enhance communities’ ability to respond to climate challenges but will also promote a more equitable and effective adaptation and resilient response to climate challenges while ensuring the preservation of traditional practices and cultural heritage in the face of change.

Climate-resilient development within the agroecosystem by integrating measures to adapt to climate change will not only sustain growing food locally to fight hunger but also provide wider benefits, including improving people’s health and livelihoods, with attendant emission and pollution reduction.

This will require local research, led by local researchers, to inform law and policy developments that are evidence-based and reflect the lived experiences of affected communities as well as provide opportunities for collaboration and dialogue on climate resilience between researchers and policymakers.

There is also the need to develop and implement relevant international and regional frameworks to ensure that all climate adaptation measures to address climate vulnerabilities take into account the specific needs of the locals: farmers, women, children, youth, persons with disabilities and other marginalised groups following relevant human rights and other instruments.

Therefore, there is a need to make locally-led adjustments to the actual or expected climate and its effects to moderate harm or exploit beneficial opportunities. Such adjustment will be intended to build the resilience of people, economies and natural resources to the impacts of climate events.

The paper also calls for community advocacy for climate actions that prioritise climate-smart practices that enshrine the principles of locally-led adaptation measures in providing indigenous solutions to build required Climate Resilience.

Therefore, for climate action efforts to be effective, they must be seen to involve adaptation measures that integrate locally-led climate resilience.


Timothy Ogenyi

Research Fellow, Centre for Climate Change and Development, Alex Ekwueme Federal

University Ndufu-Alike Nigeria (timothyogenyi2708@yahoo.com)

Dare Akogun

Dare Akogun is a dynamic media innovator, strategic communication professional, and seasoned climate and environmental sustainability journalist with over 10 years of influential contributions to the media industry.

He Currently serving as the Head of Digital Media, Senior News Editor, and a presenter at Sobi FM 101.9, a leading radio station in Ilorin, Nigeria.

Dare is on a mission to leverage his media innovation expertise and project management skills to produce high-quality, accurate, and engaging content, while advocating for reduced fossil fuel consumption, especially coal, to combat effect of global warming.

He has covered comprehensively environmental issues and COP conferences, including COP28 in Dubai last year , COP 27 in Egypt, and the United Nations Least Developed Countries conference in Doha, in 2023.

He is a recipient of fellowship to be part of a 15 team of journalists selected worldwide to cover the Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue 2024.

He has a Master's Degree in Mass Communication, from the University of Lagos, a Bachelor's Degree in Journalism from the Lagos State University and also a
Certification in Business Administration and Management, from the Babson College, Massachusetts, United States of America.

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