The Adaptation Tracking Collaborative was officially launched today, funded by a Partnership Development Grant from SSHRC. Based out of McGill―with partner institutes at Wageningen University, University of California Los Angeles, and the Universities of Notre Dame & Minnesota―the ATC brings together an interdisciplinary international team of academics, practitioners, and decision makers who are interested in developing conceptual, methodological, and empirical approaches for tracking adaptation across scales. Initial goals include creating an adaptation index version 2.0 that will link into efforts around global adaptation stocktaking and progress tracking. The ATC will work closely with collaborators, including environmental think tanks (IIED, IISD, ICCCAD), boundary organizations (UKCIP), the private sector (Deloitte), and organizations developing environmental indices (EPI, ND-GAIN). For the official announcement, go to: http://www.sshrc-crsh.gc.ca/news_room-salle_de_presse/press_releases-communiques/2016/partnerships_insight-partenariats_savoir-eng.aspx
Austin, S.E., Biesbroek, R., Berrang-Ford, L., Ford, J., Parker, S., Fleury, M.D. (2016). Public Health Adaptation to Climate Change in OECD Countries. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 13(9), 889.
Climate change is a major challenge facing public health. National governments play a key role in public health adaptation to climate change, but there are competing views on what responsibilities and obligations this will—or should—include in different nations. This study aims to: (1) examine how national-level public health adaptation is occurring in Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries; (2) examine the roles national governments are taking in public health adaptation; and (3) critically appraise three key governance dimensions of national-level health adaptation—cross-sectoral collaboration, vertical coordination and national health adaptation planning—and identify practical examples suited to different contexts. We systematically reviewed publicly available public health adaptation to climate change documents and webpages by national governments in ten OECD countries using systematic web searches, assessment of self-reporting, and content analysis. Our findings suggest national governments are primarily addressing infectious disease and heat-related risks posed by climate change, typically emphasizing capacity building or information-based groundwork initiatives. We find national governments are taking a variety of approaches to public health adaptation to climate change that do not follow expected convergence and divergence by governance structure. We discuss practical options for incorporating cross-sectoral collaboration, vertical coordination and national health adaptation planning into a variety of contexts and identify leaders national governments can look to to inform their public health adaptation planning. Following the adoption of the Paris Agreement and subsequent increased momentum for adaptation, research tracking adaptation is needed to define what health adaptation looks like in practice, reveal insights that can be taken up across states and sectors, and ensure policy orientated learning.
@ccadapt would like to congratulate former postdoc Dr Ashlee Cunsolo on her appointment as Director of the Labrador Institute. Ashlee has pioneered work on the mental health effects of climate change and in the north, and the @ccadapt team looks forward to working with her in this new role. Read more here.
@ccadapt lead Dr James Ford will be participating in the scoping meeting for the IPCC special report on the impacts of global warming of 1.5C in Geneva this week (Aug 15th – 18th). The meeting aims to develop an outline for the assessment, which was requested by Parties to the Paris Agreement.
The @ccadapt team would like to congratulate Lewis on completing his MA thesis: “a decadal re-analysis of climate change vulnerability in the Canadian arctic: a case study from Arctic Bay”.
The @ccadapt team would like to congratulate Dylan on completing his MA thesis: “Vulnerability to Injury: assessing biophysical and social determinants of land-user injuries in Nunavut, Canada.” One peer reviewed article has been published from his thesis, and one is the in the later stages of review.
Find out more about Dylan here.
Congratulations to former lab member Joanna on winning the 2016 Robin P. Armstrong Memorial Prize for Excellence in Native Studies
@ccadapt is delighted to announce that former MA student and lab member Joanna Petrasek MacDonald won this year’s Robin P. Armstrong Memorial Prize for her work on climate change and participatory videography in Nunatsiavut. Great work Joanna and all our fantastic collaborators in Rigolet and Nunatsiavut. To find out more click here.
Find Joanna’s publications and reports here.
@ccadapt would like to welcome Frances Wang to the lab. Frances did her undergraduate at McGill and completed her MSc at Oxford, and will be working on the recently launched Adaptation Tracking Collaborative.
@ccadapt would like to welcome new team member Cheenar Shah to the lab. Cheenar did her undergrad at McGill and has experience working with UNEP. She will lead a project examining the current state of adaptation in northern Quebec
The @ccadapt and TRAC3 team would like to congratulate Malcolm on completing his MA thesis: “Adaptation to climate change in urban areas: A global assessment and a case study of Dhaka, Bangladesh.” Three peer reviewed articles were published from his thesis which examined the state of adaptation in cities >1m people globally, and also examined how one city (Dhaka) is grappling with the adaptation challenge.
Articles and media pieces on Malcolm’s work can be read here:
- Araos, M., Berrang-Ford, L., Ford, J., Austin, S.E., Biesbroek, R., Lesnikowski, A. (2016). Climate change adaptation planning in large cities: A systematic global assessment. Environmental Science & Policy. DOI 10.1016/j.envsci.2016.06.009.
- Araos, M., Austin, S., Berrang-Ford, L., and Ford, J.D. (2016). Public Health Adaptation to Climate Change in Large Cities: A Global Baseline. International Journal of Health Services. 46(1), 53-78.
- Malcolm Araos featured on Motherboard, Vice.
Clark, D.G., Ford, J.D., Berrang-Ford, L., Pearce, T., Kowal, S., Gough, W.A. (2016). The role of environmental factors in search and rescue incidents in Nunavut, Canada. Public Health Journal. DOI 10.1016/j.puhe.2016.06.003.
Unintentional injury is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality in Nunavut, where the importance of land-based activities and reliance on semi-permanent trails create unique risk profiles. Climate change is believed to be exacerbating these risks, although no studies have quantitatively examined links between environmental conditions and injury and distress in the Canadian Arctic. We examine the correlation between environmental conditions and land-based search and rescue (SAR) incidents across Nunavut.
Drawing the line between adaptation and development: a systematic literature review of planned adaptation in developing countries
Sherman, M., Berrang-Ford, L., Lwasa, S., Ford, J.D., Namanya, D., Llanos-Cuentas, A., Maillet, M., Harper, S., IHACC Research Team. (2016). Drawing the line between adaptation and development: a systematic literature review of planned adaptation in developing countries. WIREs Climate Change. 7(5): 707-726.
Climate change adaptation is increasingly considered an urgent priority for policy action. Billions of dollars have been pledged for adaptation finance, with many donor agencies requiring that adaptation is distinct from baseline development. However, practitioners and academics continue to question what adaptation looks like on the ground, especially in a developing country. This study examines the current framing of planned adaptation amidst low socioeconomic development and considers the practical implications of this framing for adaptation planning. Three overarching approaches to planned adaptation in a developing country context emerged in a systematic review of 30 peer-reviewed articles published between 2010 and 2015, including: (1) technocratic risk management, which treats adaptation as additional to development, (2) pro-poor vulnerability reduction, which acknowledges the ability of conventional development to foster and act as adaptation, and (3) sustainable adaptation, which suggests that adaptation should only be integrated into a type of development that is socially and environmentally sustainable. Over half of ‘sustainable adaptation’ articles in this review took a critical adaptation approach, drawing primarily from political ecology and postdevelopment studies, and emphasizing the malleability of adaptation. The reviewed articles highlight how the different framings of the relationship between adaptation and development result in diverse and sometimes contradictory messages regarding adaptation design, implementation, funding, monitoring, and evaluation. This review illustrates the need to continually interrogate the multiple framings of adaptation and development and to foster a pragmatic and pluralistic dialogue regarding planned adaptation and transformative change in developing countries.