ACT Alliance members from eight Asian countries met last week in Nepal to share their experiences and develop strategies on how to better influence governments to address climate change.
Some of the countries that suffer the most visible and tangible immediate effects of climate change are located in Asia.
Foezullah from ACT Bangladesh explains that in her country, “we experience the horrific effects of climate change already today. People are still missing a place to live four years after the last big cyclone. Our possibilities for development are hindered by climate change.”
ACT is engaged in many projects in the region to help people most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change adapt. In Vietnam, for example, the alliance is working at the grassroots level to address systemic flooding.
“Central Vietnam’s low-lying, rural, coastal communities experience frequent and intense floods made worse by climate change,” says Mel Phadtare, Climate Policy Advisor for Norwegian Church Aid Vietnam, who works with other ACT members to promote the Swim Towards DRR [disaster risk reduction] initiative in the country.
“Vietnam has one of the highest rates of child drowning in the world. Through ‘Swim Towards DRR’, we’re teaching kids how to swim and survive when the floods come.”
Preparation for climate-related disasters at the local level, though, is not enough. The challenges of climate change are linked to global emissions and a pro-growth economic model, which demand political solutions.
ACT’s Climate Change Policy and Advocacy Officer, Isaiah Toroitich, sums it up. “Climate change is induced by humans, so humans have the capacity to address it. As an international alliance, ACT has the moral authority and global reach to advance climate justice. Meetings like the one in Nepal help us do just that.”
Started in year 2010, ‘Climate Himalaya’ initiative has been working on Mountains and Climate linked issues in the Himalayan region of South Asia. In the last five years this knowledge sharing portal has become one of the important references for the governments, research institutions, civil society groups and international agencies, those have work and interest in the Himalayas. The Climate Himalaya team innovates on knowledge sharing, capacity building and climatic adaptation aspects in its focus countries like Bhutan, India, Nepal and Pakistan. Climate Himalaya’s thematic areas of work are mountain ecosystem, water, forest and livelihood. Read>>