This is a report of the 7th Annual Regional meeting of One World South Asia (OWSA). The purpose of the 2008 meeting was to establish the relevance of climate change and development. The document underlines the need for enhanced Southern participation and activism on climate change and development and explores new avenues for engagement on the subject.The deliberations brought into sharp contracts the dichotomy between global demands for mitigation and the more urgent local imperative for survival and adaptation to unprecedented disasters.The session discussions came to an agreement that:
decentralised environmental planning is critical in effectively responding to climate change
regional and local indicators should be developed to assess specific climate change impacts
ICT and its range of tools are relevant for supporting sharing of knowledge experiences by multi- stakeholder groups that span sectors and domains in the development-climate justice space.
Three key areas are listed for possible action.
Developing and documenting knowledge on adaptation and using the ICTs to catalyse the process
Influencing policy through intensified advocacy
Working in partnerships by engaging different sectors in mitigation measures and adaptive mechanisms at the grassroots
The following recommendations were made as a way forward for OWSA and other South Asia stakeholders:
OWSA can leverage its key ICT niche to engage and amplify people’s voices from South Asia in the world debate on climate change by using its online platforms for leading discussion, collaboration and multi stakeholder consensus on climate change, and the realisation of the MDGs
OWSA should create a community knowledge repository on climate change
OWSA needs to redirect its energy to the creation of community media tools and to build the capacity of the grassroots communities to make use for these tools
governments in South Asia should set regulatory standards for carbon emissions and support low carbon use research, development and deployment
the rich and developed countries should spare substantial resources for mitigation measures including technology development and its transfer to the public domain.