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Ecosystem-Based Adaptation to Climate Change in Caribbean Small Island Developing States: Integrating Local and External Knowledge
33 Gravel Close, Downton, Salisbury, SP5 3JQ Wiltshire, UK
Center for International Climate and Environmental Research (CICERO), P.O. Box 1129, Blindern, N-0138 Oslo, Norway
UNEP/GRID-Arendal, Postboks 183, N-4802 Arendal, Norway
UNEP/GRID-Arendal, 360 Albert Street, Suite 1710, Ottawa, ON K1R 7X7, Canada
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 12 July 2012; in revised form: 6 August 2012 / Accepted: 10 August 2012 / Published: 22 August 2012
Abstract: Caribbean Small Island Developing States (SIDS) are vulnerable to climate change impacts including sea level rise, invasive species, ocean acidification, changes in rainfall patterns, increased temperatures, and changing hazard regimes including hurricanes, floods and drought. Given high dependencies in Caribbean SIDS on natural resources for livelihoods, a focus on ecosystems and their interaction with people is essential for climate change adaptation. Increasingly, ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA) approaches are being highlighted as an approach to address climate change impacts. Specifically, EbA encourages the use of local and external knowledge about ecosystems to identify climate change adaptation approaches. This paper critically reviews EbA in Caribbean SIDS, focusing on the need to integrate local and external knowledge. An analysis of current EbA in the Caribbean is undertaken alongside a review of methodologies used to integrate local and external expertise for EbA. Finally key gaps, lessons learnt and suggested ways forward for EbA in Caribbean SIDS and potentially further afield are identified.
Keywords: adaptation; Caribbean; climate change; ecosystem; local knowledge; Small Island Developing States
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Cite This Article
MDPI and ACS Style
Mercer, J.; Kelman, I.; Alfthan, B.; Kurvits, T. Ecosystem-Based Adaptation to Climate Change in Caribbean Small Island Developing States: Integrating Local and External Knowledge. Sustainability 2012, 4, 1908-1932.
Mercer J, Kelman I, Alfthan B, Kurvits T. Ecosystem-Based Adaptation to Climate Change in Caribbean Small Island Developing States: Integrating Local and External Knowledge. Sustainability. 2012; 4(8):1908-1932.
Mercer, Jessica; Kelman, Ilan; Alfthan, Björn; Kurvits, Tiina. 2012. "Ecosystem-Based Adaptation to Climate Change in Caribbean Small Island Developing States: Integrating Local and External Knowledge." Sustainability 4, no. 8: 1908-1932.