Villagers in Ba change way of living due to climate change – Uni Fiji Lecturer

Villagers in Ba change way of living due to climate change – Uni Fiji Lecturer

By Mansi Chand
Thursday 29/02/2024
University of Fiji, Lecturer in Science, Priyatma Singh Photo:Supplied

Coastal villagers in Ba are implementing changes in their agriculture, farming, fishing and way of living due to the impacts of climate change.

University of Fiji, Lecturer in Science, Priyatma Singh who led the Local Indicators of Climate Change Project in Fiji, highlighted this in the Local Indicators of Climate Change Impacts Project which was a globally coordinated study by the Institute of Environmental Science and Technology of the Autonomous University of Barcelona.

Singh says advancing climate change research and policy demands knowledge from indigenous people and local communities is one of the key findings from the project.

She says several coastal villages in Fiji are facing the wrath of sea-level rise, coastal erosion and salt inundation.

Singh says they conducted their research in 3 coastal villages in the Ba Province and in response to the reported climate change impacts, coastal villagers are implementing changes in their agriculture, livestock farming, fishing, and ways of living.

She further says reported measures include efforts that range from short-term coping strategies, including sharing necessities, such as food and water, during and in the aftermath of a disaster, but also incremental long-term adaptation measures, such as planting trees around riverbanks and even transformative adaptations.

She says the Local Indicators of Climate Change Impacts Fiji-based study recommends a nationwide participatory exercise to understand the traditional and local knowledge and kinship that forms the basis of any adaptation strategy at the community level.

Singh adds their findings suggest a clear delineation of roles and responsibilities for the monitoring and evaluation plan that is stipulated as the next stage in the National Adaptation Plan implementation.

She says this includes responsibilities for sharing, monitoring and evaluation responsibilities amongst relevant stakeholders, such as NGOs and academic institutions, which could undertake community-based surveys and relay the findings to national authorities.

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