Climate Change in Asia and the Pacific: How can Countries Adapt? V Anbumozhi, M Breiling, S Pathmarajah, VR Reddy (Eds), Sage Publications India Pvt Ltd, Pp 363, Rs 1195.00
As an outcome of the two workshops held on climate change in Tokyo and Colombo respectively, this book is a compilation of papers presented to focus on the vulnerability of the developing countries of Asia and Pacific region to the impact of climate change. The poor in these countries are at especially high risk, given their dependence on agriculture, reliance on ecosystem services, rapid growth and concentration of populations and relatively poor health services. As it is, developing countries are usually characterised by insufficient capacity to adapt to the impact of climate change due to their inadequate infrastructure, meagre household incomes and savings and limited support from public services. So adaptation through adjustments in natural or human systems in response to actual or expected climate stimuli becomes a key strategy for sustaining economic growth. At the same time, failure to adapt could stall development, particularly in countries that depend on natural resources.
The book examines the framework conditions for integrating climate change adaptation measures into agriculture, water and natural resources management activities. This constitutes the main premise of the book, but we find the book divided into six parts for addressing these issues in greater detail.
Part I identifies the main risks associated with extreme weather events, quantifies their impacts and reviews the available risk management tools and planning instruments. The Asia and Pacific region is likely to face a reduction in the average annual gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate and negative impacts on agriculture and natural resources sectors. The authors suggest that the first step towards adaptive capacity should be to predict climate change impacts by assessing the likely exposure of natural resources and examining the follow-on impacts of changes on human, economic and social systems.
Part II discusses various driving forces to strengthen resilience to climate change.
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