This artlcle, published on the weADAPT platform in March 2016, is based on insights shared at a COP21 side-event on integrating ecosystem- and community-based adaptation co-hosted by SEI and CIRAD, and aims to shed light to a few lessons learnt over the years from researchers and practitioners based on on-the-ground adaptation practice that can inform the future adaptation practice in a 1.5C warmer world.
Climate adaptation planning requires an integrated approach that can address different local needs, priorities and knowledge to build adaptive capacity, while also being contextualised to wider landscapes or ecosystems as well as different geographical scales. Failing to integrate these aspects has resulted in isolated interventions that lose impact or legitimacy over time, or generate negative cascading effects at different scales.
Ecosystem- and community-based adaptation are two approaches that have gained wide attention in the past years but are largely disconnected. This fragmentation can only be addressed through strong collaborative efforts and by bringing different adaptation communities of practice together. It is then when we can meet the challenges we face. Communities are important, but so are ecosystems.
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