Cities in the Global South - Whose Development? (Climate Adaptation…
Cities in the Global South - Whose Development?
Local-Level Climate Adaptation Decision Making
Things to consider on local-level decision making
Uncertainty: What resources do we prepare if we don't know what's coming
Learning: If we've taken measures once, how can we learn from what happened?
Scale: How do we move from getting groups to consider the city as a whole and not just their own locality?
Politics: How to we overcome the reality that some neighbourhoods and groups have much more political weight than others (allowing them to secure a disproportionate amount of resources)
Reorganisation: How do we organise in situations where resources are needed at the same time in different places for different things after the onset of a natural disaster/climate event
Resilience: This is the main concept to be discussed
Folke (2016) created the Interconnected Principals for Enhancing Resilience:
Maintaining diversity and redundancy
Don’t know what’s going to happen so need to ensure we have enough resources for what may happen – may not be efficient but need to keep options open
Allowing neighbourhoods to connect to each other – mobile networks are involved here – what if the network goes down? Or what if physical bridges go down across a river say?
Manage slow variables and feedbacks
If you use resources for one thing, you can’t also use them for another at the same time
Foster an understanding of socio-ecological systems as complex adaptive systems
Encourage learning and experimentation
Going through exercises to help people think about which resources to invest in – let neighbourhoods learn from each other
Local, scientific, technical, leadership knowledge etc
Promote polycentric governing systems
What happens at policy-level is also important
Climate Adaptation Measures in Cities in the Global South
Lots of literature says that local-scale initiatives don't really work when scaled up to national/global level (Adger)
Red Cross (2008): Stress the importance of international donors and agencies and national governments in establishing effective, enabling environments/channeling resources and support
Community led process – based on communities’ needs, priorities, knowledge and capacities empower people and allow then to plan/cope with the impacts of CC
Monitoring of river levels
E.g. in Jakarta – have poles to let them know where things are when everything’s submerged – simple and can be easily implemented – same w/ rainwater harvesting
The International Institute for Environment and Development held CBA10 in Dhaka, Bangladesh from 21-28 April, was 'enhancing urban community resilience'
It concluded with a call for governments, NGOs and infrastructure investors to work with urban community federations to mainstream and finance local adaptation
City Level Adaptations
Ford et al 2015:
Delivery of government services
Regulations in response to predicted CC
Example: Delhi rainwater-harvesting made mandatory in building plots >200sqm
Example: Floating Roads - Netherlands
Linking Climate Adaptation to Development Issues in Cities in the GS
Interconnectedness with Wider Urban issues:
CC isn’t happening in isolation to all the other process going on within cities
SDG11: Less developed regions of the world are projected to account for around 90% of the urban population growth between 2005-2030 – very important to figure out how to incorporate understands in developing areas
o Large contrast between images of what development means in Delhi
o They have a modern metro system that’s expanding
o Then there’s transport issues found whenever there’s lots of differnet modes of transport
o Still 50% of population in slum conditions
o City grew by 17% from 1997 to 2008
o Car ownership doubled between 2000 and 2010
o Electricity shortages every year
o 18% living below poverty line (India’s definition)
o Flooding: next to large river – on flood plain
o Heat island effect
o Issue of waste generation – 250,000-300,000 waste pickers in the city
o Issues are held by many other developing cities
o Theresa May’s 3 day trip shortened her life by several hours
o 550 micrgrams per cubic metres – compared to 150 in London
Discourse in Delhi:
♣ Dehi doing well at promoting world-class city image
♣ Technology, clean, easy ways to travel – averages 2.6m passengers per day (half of London underground)
♣ Does this system benefit the poor?
♣ Homes disappearing to make way for metro
♣ Metro too expensive for poor to afford
♣ Commonwealth Games (2010) – emphasised their ‘world class’ status
♣ Games will help the government turn their noses up in pride, but what about us (poor families)
♣ 300,000 street vendors at least temporarily lost their jobs during the games
♣ Legacy of the games – stadiums used occasionally but not for sporting events – a lot of stuff no longer used – waste of money?
♣ Athletes village stands largely empty
♣ Should there be considerations for child labour, working conditions etc.?
♣ How do we deal with all of this with CC on top of it?
Views on how CC fits in with other Urban Issues:
CC as an additional special type of project, along with many other ongoing development projects
Adger (2003): Not the same as other projects due to uncertainties and additional vulnerabilities such as the wider scale of implementation needed
Reed et al (2015): can’t implement CC defense through a ‘project’ – the interwoveness of issues means we need to look further, look at structural changes to change vulnerabilities
Ramalingham (2013): Climate change adaptation challenges linear thinking used previously
CC as an integrated part of current project
Mainstream the idea of CC within current systems – rather than as something separate
Bird (2017): Believes changes in donor priorities and funding behaviours can make a big change – more and more people looking at issues through a climate change lens
Political will: What happens when CC and development issues don’t align with current political will of incoming politicians? E.g. in Bangkok, politicians aligned with construction companies – not bothering with full socio-environmental impacts – how can we expect these short term processes align with long term CC adaptations?
Need to mainstream at city level: Through zoning plans etc. – using current institutions – but the criticism of using them is that they’re not aligned with the CC goals and thus don’t have the incentives to do anything about it (Lankao, 2007)
CC as a positive side effect of other projects:
E.g. Increasing green space may also help meet CC goals
E.g. in India, National Green Tribunal decided to ban forms of single-use plastic – issue was 3 plants around the city that burned the plastic for energy were causing a lot of air pollution + clogging of drains occurring due to the plastic leaking
If you use it for energy generation, you’ll be fined – as will supermarkets if they give out plastic bags – in the capital city therefore hoped to be replicated in other cities
Is this feasible? Can implementation issues really be overcome?
• Disproportionately hurts poorer people who depend on these cheap resources – is there a backup/alternative for these people? SJ issues.
• Inequality in terms of the fact that there were jobs provided by finding and collecting plastic – will these be replaced?
• Questions on the effect on drainage – how is the rubbish going to be removed from the drains – plastic hangs around for about 400 years – is the ban well considered?
• Issues in terms of corruption and also enforcement – will authorities go round and check all the markets?
• Knock on effect for other SDGs – negative effects on some of them – maybe some positives – may help reduce raw materials (CC mitigation) – what about adaptation? Unblocked drainage may help with flooding issues - negative effects: people may think they’ve ‘done their bit’ once they stop using plastic bags
CC as a way to project a certain image
Things like smart cities – CC fits in very well with their discourse
E.g. Rotherdam in the Netherlands using CC adaptation as a marketing tool for the city
CC as a window of opportunity
Reed et al (2015): CC adaptation helps bring about other kinds of change – talking about how it’s the networks build around projects that are important – e.g. building communication networks to deal with flooding may have many other ways for which they can be used
Opens up an opportunity for more pro-poor development as CC often addresses the most vulnerable – need to be careful though, that you don’t just relabel projects as CC adaptation