Untold Stories: Women's Resilience and Climate Change Adaptation in Bangladesh

Mumita Tanjeela, University, My, Giorel Curran, Elizabeth Van Acker
Climate change is now an issue of critical concern throughout the world. In 2014, the Fifth Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change proclaimed that the 21st century will pose some of the most acute challenges due to the accelerating impacts of climate change. Bangladesh, a South Asian developing country, is considered the sixth most vulnerable nation in the world due to its geographical settings (GCRI, 2015). The country faces extreme climatic events including sea level rise, salt water
more » ... ion into arable lands, and the increased risk of severe storms, cyclones, floods, flash floods and drought in coming decades (IPCC, 2014; BCCSAP, 2009). The nexus between poverty and climate change is also a major concern, especially in a country like Bangladesh where lack of resources is a significant problem in both rural and urban areas. Therefore, climate vulnerability in Bangladesh is strongly associated with poverty, which in turn shapes its adaptation capacity. Climate change affects a wide range of communities in Bangladesh such as peoplew living in coastal zones, drought prone areas, settlers on unstable slopes and climate refugees in urban slums. However, among those affected, women are more vulnerable than men to climate change impacts, as is evident from the history of climate-induced disasters in the country. In Bangladesh, climate change increases women's socio-economic vulnerabilities by directly impacting on their families' food security, water consumption and traditional livelihood. According to Jahan (2008), any type of environmental degradation causes more suffering to women because their family's survival, for which they are responsible, depends directly on the natural resource base. In the quest for a new livelihood, men migrate while women are often left behind to support their families and households. Thus women have had to develop a wide range of coping and resilience strategies in order to survive climate change impacts, and they have developed strategies and knowledge that can be particularly usef [...]
doi:10.25904/1912/2881 fatcat:2pzdgdo3k5gpphp75uxwjz5pfu