Strengthening good governance and democratic process in National Climate Change Adaptation Planning

Strengthening good governance and democratic process in National Climate Change Adaptation Planning

Many people often think of organic farming as a completely chemically free farming. In fact organic farming is an approach that is able to cope and self-revived through a supportive network of members that provides a collective marketing mechanism. This means that if the production is impacted by external factors such as climate change, crops grown through organic approach are resilient to harsh climate condition such as drought and hence are able to rejuvenate..."

Ms Poonpetch Siluer-oon, 54 years old Field coordinator, Sanam Chai Khet Organic Farmer Group

CONTEXT

Thailand's per capita emissions now rank the 22nd among the world's top 30 carbon emitters. As part of the global effort to address climate change, Thailand ratified the Paris Agreement and has made considerable progress with its policies and plans for climate change mitigation and adaptation, including the masterplan, the National Determined Contributions roadmap, and the National Adaptation Plan (NAP). However, the Government's efforts had been considered insufficient, mainly due to: i. the absence of effectively engage civil society organisations (CSOs), local authorities (LAs) and the general public in the planning process; and ii. the adaptation emphasis was on important economic sectors, overlooking the communities vulnerable to climate change impacts. Against the above background, the project seeks to strengthen the capacity of environmental CSOs to ensure good governance in the NAP planning and bring about sustainable development and inclusive growth.

OBJECTIVES

  • To build the capacity of environmental CSOs and local authorities (LA) to conduct vulnerability and capacity assessments and develop innovative adaptation measures.
  • To strengthen the network of environmental CSOs and LA to promote inclusive, representative and participatory planning in the National Adaptation Plan (NAP) process.

RESULTS

  • Capacity of environmental CSOs and local authorities (LA) to conduct vulnerability and capacity assessments and develop innovative adaptation measures built.
  • Network of environmental CSOs and LAs to promote inclusive, representative and participatory planning in the National Adaptation Plan (NAP) process strengthened.

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FACTS AND FIGURES

  • Thailand is ranked 10th among the countries most affected by extreme weather conditions (1996-2015)

TESTIMONY

Small-scale fisheries communities of Songkla lake adapt to climate change

The middle zone of Songkla is linked to the Gulf of Thailand. It covers 182 square kilometres with an average depth of 1.5 metres.  The area is occupied with seawater although turns brackish during rainy season.

The small scale fisherfolks whose livelihoods are heavily dependent on the Lake commonly agree that the Lake’s ecology has definitely changed. 

"If you ask us about global warming or climate change, most small-scale fisher-folk will find it difficult to answer you, because we don't really understand these phenomena. But if you ask us whether the weather has changed over the past 30 to 40 years, we will tell you yes, it has definitely changed. For example, the water in the lake has become much hotter, we can feel it with our hands and on our skin.

Seaweed growth is something else which has changed a lot in recent years. In the past, Songkhla Lake had many different varieties of seaweed, but not in large quantities. However, over the past 5 years or so, some types of seaweed have become very abundant, resulting in all sorts of problems. The seaweed has become tangled in our fishing gears, damaging them in the process, and we have often ended up catching more seaweed than fish! Usually, during the season when freshwater enters the lake, most of the seaweed dies off. But in some recent years the volume of freshwater entering the lake has been very low, allowing the seaweed to accumulate and degrading overall water quality. This has affected the development of aquatic animals and impacted upon the Songkhla Lake ecosystem as a whole. All of this, of course, impacts upon our livelihoods." Miss Yainab Ridtoe, 51 years old - Small-scale Fisher-folk, Songkhla Lake

This phenomenon was uncommon in the past but has become more frequent nowadays due to an increasingly poor water circulation and decrease depth of the lake, which in turns has a knock on impact on boat navigation for the small-scale fisherfolks, making it more difficult for them to take their boats out to fish and subsequently impacting their livelihoods. Meanwhile, the climate change prediction between 2006- 2040 conducted by Ramkhamhaen University forecasts that volume of seawater in the lake will be increased and it will directly impact the ecology of the lake.

The community finds that their approach in preparing for the adaptation of climate change is to increase community's capacity in terms of knowledge and skills, particularly basic scientific knowledge and accompanied it with local traditional knowledge. With this capacity the community will be able to cooperate with the government agencies in collectively developing a better management plan to improve and protect Songkla Lake. This kind of cooperation is a vital approach to address climate change adaption and they must seek to build a development plan correspond to local ecosystem and in line with the current situation and ensure the risk reduction of the community’s livelihoods.