This is a recorded seminar on the topic of Climate Change, Inequality, and Adaptation which took place online last May 19, 2021, with guests Dr. Karen Wong-Perez and Prod. Patrcia Balvanera, hosted by Dr. Rachel Carmenta.
Rural communities in tropical forest landscapes of the global South carry little responsibility for climate change, and yet disproportionately suffer the impacts – which include extended droughts, increased risk of uncontrolled fires and disease. The conservation agenda typically targets communities in these same landscapes with site-level interventions that are increasingly blended with responses to climate change. Such efforts include REDD+, forest and landscape restoration programmes, integrated landscape initiatives and other nature-based solutions. Rural small scale subsistence farmers are thereby affected by not only climate change, but also responses to it. Whilst climate conservation interventions present an opportunity for tackling climate change, conservation and development, they may also pose risks to local communities. Given the increasing interest in nature-based solutions in the international policy arena, it is imperative that interventions do not extenuate the vulnerabilities of rural populations and instead enhance the resilience and well-being of the communities they impact. Ensuring that the pursuit of climate-related conservation delivers equitable outcomes demands the design of bundles of interventions that resonate with the ecological context as well as the place-based realities of local communities. This seminar will address and critically reflect on some of the challenges posed, and harvest lessons learned from past and present experiences in climate conservation interventions.