Vulnerability and Adaptation

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Vulnerability and Adaptation. Kristie L. Ebi, Ph.D., MPH Executive Director, WGII TSU PAHO/WHO Workshop on Vulnerability and Adaptation Guidance 20 July 2010. Exposure Vulnerability. Impacts = ƒ. Vulnerability = the degree to which - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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  • Vulnerability and AdaptationKristie L. Ebi, Ph.D., MPHExecutive Director, WGII TSUPAHO/WHO Workshop on Vulnerability and Adaptation Guidance20 July 2010

  • Impacts = ExposureVulnerabilityVulnerability = the degree to whicha system is susceptible to or unable to cope with the adverse effects of climate change, including climate variability and extremes

    Sensitivity = the degree to which a system is affected by climate variability and change

  • Definitions of Vulnerability Vary Across SectorsIPCC definition also states that vulnerability is a function of the character, magnitude, and rate of change and variation to which a system is exposed, its sensitivity, and its adaptive capacityThis views vulnerability as the expected net damage after all possible adaptation / mitigation and not current situationThis definition is from natural hazards researchVulnerability determines adaptive capacity vs adaptive capacity determine vulnerability

  • Multi-Hazard Map of Africa

    2009 Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction

  • Multi-Hazard Map of Asia

    2009 Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction

  • Number of Drought DisastersEMDAT (1974-2004)

    2009 Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction

  • People Exposed to Drought

    2009 Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction

  • Mortality Risk for Tropical Cyclones

  • VulnerabilityFor human systems, vulnerability relates to the consequences of exposure, not to the exposure itself (i.e. people and communities are vulnerable to damage and loss rather than to specific exposures such as flooding)Highly dependent on context and scaleVulnerability changes over spatial and temporal scalesSocioeconomic and biophysical dimensions

  • Sri Lanka Extensive and Intensive Loss Reports 1970-2007

    2009 Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction

  • Everyone is Vulnerable, HoweverVulnerability is not evenly distributedVulnerability to one hazard is often quite different from vulnerability to anotherVulnerability varies over time and locationVulnerability can depend on a wide range of socioeconomic and biogeophysical factors and trendsNational level indicators of vulnerability aggregate across significant differences

  • Defining levels of vulnerability for intervention is a social and political process that depends on the question being asked

  • Prerequisites for ActionAwareness that a problem existsUnderstanding of the causesA sense that the problem mattersThe capability to influenceThe political will to deal with the problemLast 1998

  • Future vs Current VulnerabilityFuture and current vulnerability do not necessarily map directlyCurrent climate vs. climate change in the absence of adaptation/ mitigation vs. residual vulnerabilitySome regions and communities will be particularly affected by changing climate variability, others by gradual changes in climateIdentifying emerging vulnerability hot spots depends on projections of development pathways and of climate change impacts

  • BaselineEbi et al. 2005

  • 2025Ebi et al. 2005

  • 2050Ebi et al. 2005

  • Tropical Cyclones Over a 30-Year Period

    2009 Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction

  • Adapting to climate change is not a problem to be solved, but a process to be managed

  • Responding to climate change involves an iterative risk management process that includes both adaptation and mitigation and takes into account climate change damages, co-benefits, sustainability, equity and attitudes to riskIPCC 2007 Synthesis Report

  • Addressing Changing RisksExisting risksModifying existing strategies and programsReinstitute effective programs that have been neglected or abandonedApply win/win or no-regrets strategiesNew risksDesign and implement strategies and programs that take into account a changing climate and changing vulnerabilities

  • Adaptation Measures to Reduce Health Outcomes from FloodsLegislative policies: Improve land use planning Decision support tools: Early warning systems and emergency response plans Surveillance and monitoring: Alter health data collection systems to monitor for disease outbreaks during and after an extreme eventInfrastructure development: Design infrastructure to withstand projected extreme eventsOther: Conduct research on effective approaches to encourage appropriate behavior

  • Prioritizing Adaptation OptionsEvaluate effectiveness of adaptation options by certainty, timing, severity, and importance of impactsEvaluate effectiveness of adaptation options under the following scenariosCurrent climateA hotter and drier climateA hotter and wetter climateHotter with more variable precipitation

  • What Does This Mean?We look for:Adaptations that make sense anywayAnd make even more sense considering climate changePolicies that reduce vulnerability to climate variability will generally reduce risk to climate changeMarginal adjustments and low costTarget of opportunityNo regrets

  • Thank-you

  • Observed summer (Dec-Feb) rainForecast (November- modelled) summer rainHighest malaria incidence yearsLowest malaria incidence years

  • Climate InformationAdaptation

    *The threshold was established at 50 deaths or 500 houses. Those loss reports with 50 deaths or 500 destroyed houses or more are characterized intensive risk and those with less than 50 deaths and 500 destroyed houses are characterized as extensive risk. ********