People's cure to climate woes
Ecologically vulnerable Nepal has framed its climate change adaptation plan with the help of communities
Tdistricts in one of the most HE POOREST poor countries of the world have suggested ways to mitigate the problems they face due to climate change. Nepal, which is going through a political transition and drafting a Constitution, has made the most vulnerable sections of its population a part of climate change adaptation planning.
High poverty rates and fragile ecology make Nepal extremely susceptible to climate change impacts.As per assessments done by the government, the mid-western and farwestern regions, where small-scale agriculture is the main occupation,are highly prone to drought, landslides and changing rain patterns (see ‘Precariously balanced’). Compared to the rest of the country, the adaptation capability of these regions is also quite low. But despite the turmoil it is going through, Nepal became the first country in the world to develop a bottom-to-top planning approach when it announced the National Framework on Local Adaption Plans for Action in November 2011. The implementation started in 2013 and is to be completed by the end of 2015.
Local Adaptation Plans of Action, or lapa, identify local needs, options and priorities, and incorporate them in national policy. The programme was conceptualised to ensure better implementation of Nepal’s National Adaptation Programme of Action (napa), which was launched in September 2010.
Local plans are prepared with inputs from the village/municipality level, using community wisdom.“They are the wish documents of communities,” says Som Lal Subedi,secretary,Ministry of Federal Affairs and Local Development (mofald), Nepal. For instance, drought-prone village Vishala in Dailekh district wanted the authorities to provide drought-tolerant seed varieties and construct a pond. These suggestions were accepted. A total of 70 local plans were prepared for 69 villages development committees (vdcs) and one municipality in 14 of Nepal’s poorest and vulnerable districts for implementation in 2013-14. The plan