Research on climate change impact on Chilika
In its bid to understand the impact of climate change on Chilika lagoon, the Chilika Development Authority and Wetlands International-South Asia (WISA) will launch a three-year research programme.
The programme, with focus on livelihood resilience, aims at enhancing climate preparedness of wetland management by developing response options and strategies for reducing climate-related risks as well as increasing community preparedness for changes in wetland ecosystem services.
Chilika being a coastal wetland, the CDA has been, for quite some time, seeking to carry out the study to assess the probable impact of the climate change on the brackish water lagoon. Sanctioned under the Climate Change and Water Programme of International Development and Research Centre (IDRC), the project will be implemented by WISA and CDA with expert support from the Institute of Land, Water and Society, Charles Sturt University, Australia.
Through the project, CDA and WISA look at building climate scenario modelling, participatory risk assessments with the communities. The initiative is first of its kind to be implemented for a wetland system and would be of immense use to wetland managers in the country, Chief Executive of CDA Ajit Kumar Patnaik said.
The three-year research would focus on scenario of change in ecosystem components, processes and services of Chilika due to climate change. Besides, assessment of current coping and adaptation mechanisms within wetland communities and enhancement of livelihood resilience in changing climate through pilot interventions will be taken up. Agro-climate plan for wetland management identifying adaptation options, intervention strategies, priority actions and investment will also be part of it.
The research findings will be used to guide investment planning for climate change mitigation and adaptation. The project, which will be launched on Thursday, would be a platform for knowledge sharing among wetland managers across the country.
Stephen McGurk, Regional Director (South Asia and China) of International Development Research Centre, also a noted development economist with experience in leading a wide range of projects, will unveil the project.