Sahelian West Africa has recovered from the disastrous droughts of the 1970s and 1980s. People have learned to adapt to risk and uncertainty in fragile dryland environments. They, as well as global change scientists, are worried about the impact of climate change on these West African drylands. What do the experiences of the last thirty years say about the preparedness for higher temperatures, lower rainfall, and even more variability? Detailed studies on Dryland West Africa as a whole, and on Burkina Faso, Mali and Northern Ghana in particular show an advanced coping behaviour and increased adaptation, but also major differences in vulnerability and coping potential. Climate change preparedness programmes have only just started and require more robust support, and more specific social targeting, for a population which is rapidly growing, even more rapidly urbanising, and further integrating in a globalised economy.
This book is the first of its kind with a comprehensive analysis of climate change experiences in West African drylands, with attention for pathways of change and the diversity of adaptation options available. This book is of interest to scientists studying global and climate change, especially dealing with issues of adaptation. Social scientists, economists, geographers and policy makers concerned with West Africa should also read this book.
Contributing Authors.- `Voices from the Sahel'.- Foreword.- Climate Change in the Sahel Region.- The ICCD Research; T. Dietz, J. Verhagen.- The World's Drylands: A Classification; T. Dietz, E. Veldhuizen.- Climate Change in Dryland West Africa; M. Put, J. Verhagen, E. Veldhuizen, P. Jellema.- Uncertainties in Modelling Climate Change; J. van Boxtel.- Climate Change Scenarios for Dryland West Africa, 1990-2050; G. van den Born, R. Leemans, M. Schaeffer.- Climate Change and Drought Risks for Agriculture; J. Verhagen, M. Put, F. Zaal, H. van Keulen.- Sahelian Livelihoods on the Rebound; F. Zaal, T. Dietz, J. Brons, K. van der Geest, E. Ofori-Sarpong.- Population Dynamics; T. Dietz, E. Veldhuizen.- Driving Forces for Changes in Land Use; J. Brons, R. Ruben, M. Toure, B. Ouedraogo.- Cotton and Climate Change in West Africa; P. Ton.- A Literature Survey about Risk and Vulnerability in Drylands, with a Focus on the Sahel; K. van der Geest, T. Dietz.- Cases from the Sub-humid and Semi-arid Zones in the West African Sahel.- Climate and Livelihood Change in North East Ghana; T. Dietz, D. Millar, S. Dittoh, F. Obeng, E. Ofori-Sarpong.- Pathways to Mitigate Climate Variability and Climate Change in Mali: The Districts of Douentza and Koutiala Compared; H. van Dijk, M. de Bruijn, W. van Beek.- Responses to Climate Variability in the Kaya Region, Burkina Faso; M. Breusers.- Change and Adaptation in a Livestock-producing Region: Northeastern Burkina Faso; F. Zaal, A. Diallo.- Livelihood Strategies and Development Pathways at Household and Village Level; J. Brons, F. Zaal, L. Kersbergen, R. Ruben.- Some Comments on Portfolio Diversification, Rural Pathways and Farm and Household Analyses; T. Hilhorst, C. Reu.- Urban-rural Linkages and Climate Variability; A. Broekhuis, M. de Bruijn, A. de Jong.- Climate Deterioration and Regional Specificity; T. Dietz.- The Importance of Socio-cultural Differences and of Pathway Analysis for Understanding Local Actor's Responses; M. de Bruijn, H. van Dijk.- Consequences for Policy.- Climate Variability, Risk Coping and Agrarian Policies in Sub-Saharan Africa; R. Ruben, A. Kuyvenhoven, K. Sissoko, G. Kruseman.- Climate Change and Management of Catastrophic Risk; P. Hazell.- Climate Variability and Early Warning Systems; M. Konaté.- Climate Change Preparedness in West Africa; T. Dietz, R. Ruben, J. Verhagen, S. Dittoh, M. Konaté, D. Millar, E. Ofori-Sarpong, H. Saley, N.C. Sylla.- References.- Index