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Vulnerability and Adaptation - A Regional Synthesis of the Vulnerability and Adaptation Component of Caribbean National Communications

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R. Moore
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A review of the initial national communications of Antigua and Barbuda, the Commonwealth of the Bahamas, Barbados, Commonwealth of Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, St Christopher and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent, and the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago was undertaken focusing on the vulnerability and adaptation component ofthe national communications. The overall objective of this initial study was to identify key vulnerability and adaptation concerns from the national communications which would focus the basis for future studies in the area of vulnerability and adaptation. The vulnerability concerns in the region are quite similar, with countries identifying coastal resources, agriculture, human settlements and infrastructure, human health, extreme events, forestry and waterresources as the major concerns. There was little scientific work done in the area of vulnerability assessments, with most of the vulnerability studies carried out being informed by expert judgement Adaptation options identified involved sustainable development practices which would include climate change concerns such as water resource management and the development of hazard maps and building codes. There was a lack of specific adaptation projects due to the limited scientific analysis which has been used in the area of vulnerability assessment Future work in the region should focus on closing the scientific data gap which is prevalent in the region. Research and monitoring will be key in the region putting effective adaptation measures in place. The document argues that continual capacity building is needed in the region as well as a comprehensive public awareness programmes to supportregional efforts at developing suitable adaptation responses to global climate change.