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Impact of Climate Change and Food Security on Poverty

Partner: CUTS international

Duration: 2010-2011

Locale: Badin, Bahawalpur and Gilgit

Team Members: Mome Saleem

In Badin fishermen were severely affected due to receding water in the river and increased saline water. The number of fish caught by these fishermen drastically diminished moreover the vanishing fish species resulted in a decreased income for the farmers. Some of the small farmers were forced to leave their profession and look for other ways of generating income. The fishermen lacked other skills and ultimately failed to secure sufficient food for their families. Being a coastal area of the Arabian Sea, Badin was hit by the floods and the intensity and frequency of the floods is increasing with time; increasingly affecting livelihood of the local residents. In the mountainous region of Gilgit, increased frost in the fields and melting glaciers are becoming impediments in the yield of crops making marginalised and small farmers vulnerable to food security.

Decreased livestock, production of crops and decreased numbers of fish resulting from catastrophes such as the floods have resulted in poverty and have attributed to the loss of livestock and crops during these calamities. On the contrary there has been no planning at the policy level to help these people adapt to the changing climate thus making survival difficult for them. Farmers suggest that training based on the adoption of climate friendly technologies & use of climate change resistant seeds can help alleviate the problem of poverty.

The study “Impact of Climate Change and food security on poverty” in Pakistan was conducted by SDPI in collaboration with the Consumer Unity and Trust Society (CUTS International). SDPI with its nationwide established network and skills in the field of research facilitated in data collection and data management of the information gathered from three of the eleven agro ecological zones in Pakistan. The three agro ecological zones included Badin, Bahawalpur and Gilgit selected on the basis of the difference in geographical features, climate and agricultural practices thus presented a difference in the resultant impact of climate change on indigenous agriculture, food security and livelihood. The study enhanced an understanding of the impact that climate change has on agriculture, so that required measures can be taken to raise awareness and suggest measures for coping with climate change induced problems.

The first round of the study entailed a survey of small and marginal farmers, and fishermen, whose livelihoods are highly dependent on natural resources and local climatic conditions. It aimed at understanding their perceptions about climate change and its occurrence, and the impact on their incomes and food security. The second round encompassed a survey of professionals studying issues of climate change, either through scientific tools of measurement and observation or through their work on communities affected by climate change. The overall objective was to aggregate the perceptions of these stakeholders, both national and international, and establish the impact of climate change on agriculture, fisheries, and livestock.

For More Information, Contact the Following Person:

Mome Saleem