Australian rangelands and climate change – guidance to support adaptation: Addressing climate adaptive capacity, resilience and vulnerability of people in remote and marginalised regions

Australian rangelands and climate change – guidance to support adaptation: Addressing climate adaptive capacity, resilience and vulnerability of people in remote and marginalised regions Report

Climate Change in Australia – Impacts & Adaptation Information for Australia’s NMR Regions

  • Author(s): Measham, T.G.
  • Published: 2014
  • Publisher: Rangelands NMR Cluster, Ninti One Limited and CSIRO

Abstract: This report brings together information and methods that will be of practical use in addressing adaptive capacity, resilience and vulnerability of people in the rangelands. To date, most adaptation responses to climate impacts have tended to develop in urban areas where relatively dense populations are concerned about specific and localised threats, such as coastal inundation. In practical terms, a main focus of climate adaptation has been concerned with prioritising assets and estimating impacts on those assets. Priority is given to defending those assets against impacts such as related tidal surge and storm events. Although this report draws on those approaches, they have limited value in rangelands due to the dispersed nature of climate impacts, the already highly variable climate in rangeland s regions and the distinct character of rangeland s populations. The people of the rangelands are not only more sparsely distributed compared to people in higher rainfall areas, they have different social networks. Moreover, they are accustomed to bouncing back from adversity, are highly resourceful and rely more on their local knowledge. For this reason, rangeland s researchers have developed a unique framework tailored to remote areas, and this framework is summarised in this report. Importantly, it brings together two different sides to adaptation, vulnerability reduction and enhancing resilience, in a single coordinated framework. Rangeland s populations tend to think long term – and this is exactly the approach put forward in the remote area framework – using some types of management strategies to ‘buy time’ while other types of strategies are coming into effect. This framework is illustrated with case studies drawing on past research, including research about human responses to heatwaves, to show how different strategies for reducing vulnerability and building resilience can be combined over time (Maru et al. 2014). The framework is also considered in relation to buffel grass management, drawing on one of the other cluster research projects (Davis 2014). The report was developed in collaboration with rangelands NRM planners, biophysical scientists and social scientists to provide an appropriate level of detail in an accessible format. Key points • Rangelands have distinct ecologies and social systems such that conventional approaches to climate adaptation may not always work in these remote areas. • This report draws on those approaches but presents a rangeland - specific approach to information and guidance to support climate change adaptation. • The approach balances resilience and vulnerability reduction and draws on the existing capacity of rangeland s residents.

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Suggested Citation
Measham, T.G., 2014, Australian rangelands and climate change – guidance to support adaptation: Addressing climate adaptive capacity, resilience and vulnerability of people in remote and marginalised regions, Report, viewed 09 August 2022, https://www.nintione.com.au/?p=2823.

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