Integrating social–ecological vulnerability assessments with climate forecasts to improve local climate adaptation planning for coral reef fisheries in Papua New Guinea

Maina, Joseph, Kithiia, Justus, Cinner, Josh, Neale, Ezra, Noble, Sylvia, Charles, Daniel, and Watson, James E.M. (2016) Integrating social–ecological vulnerability assessments with climate forecasts to improve local climate adaptation planning for coral reef fisheries in Papua New Guinea. Regional Environmental Change, 16 (3). pp. 881-891.

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Abstract

A major gap exists in integrating climate projections and social–ecological vulnerability analyses at scales that matter, which has affected local-scale adaptation planning and actions to date. We address this gap by providing a novel methodology that integrates information on: (i) the expected future climate, including climate-related extreme events, at the village level; (ii) an ecological assessment of the impacts of these climate forecasts on coral reefs; and (iii) the social adaptive capacity of the artisanal fishers, to create an integrated vulnerability assessment on coastal communities in five villages in Papua New Guinea. We show that, despite relatively proximate geographies, there are substantial differences in both the predicted extreme rainfall and temperature events and the social adaptive capacity among the five fishing-dependent communities, meaning that they have likely different vulnerabilities to future climate change. Our methodology shows that it is possible to capture social information and integrate this with climate and ecological modeling in ways that are best suited to address the impacts of climate-mediated environmental changes currently underway across different scales.

Item ID: 49312
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1436-378X
Keywords: climate change, adaptation, socioecological vulnerability, coral reef fisheries, Papua New Guinea
Funders: AusAID, John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, Tiffany Foundation
Date Deposited: 12 Jun 2017 00:13
FoR Codes: 05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0501 Ecological Applications > 050101 Ecological Impacts of Climate Change @ 50%
16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1608 Sociology > 160801 Applied Sociology, Program Evaluation and Social Impact Assessment @ 30%
16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1608 Sociology > 160802 Environmental Sociology @ 20%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9603 Climate and Climate Change > 960301 Climate Change Adaptation Measures @ 30%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9603 Climate and Climate Change > 960311 Social Impacts of Climate Change and Variability @ 70%
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