Theme:

Climate Change Adaptation in Mountains

Mountains cover roughly one quarter of the Earth’s land surface but host an impressive array of natural resources – 25% of terrestrial biodiversity, 60% of all biosphere reserves, freshwater supplies for lowland irrigation and domestic use, and important raw materials such as minerals and timber. They provide essential ecosystem services for livelihoods as well as opportunities for recreation and tourism.

Mountains are also currently home to about 1 billion people. And both the people and the mountains are particularly vulnerable to climate change.

Rising temperatures and changing precipitation patterns are disrupting water flows and affecting ecosystems, creating and worsening natural hazards and threatening livelihoods across the globe. But mountain ecosystems are more sensitive to climate change compared to other terrestrial ecosystems, and mountain dwellers have less income on average compared to people living downstream. As a result, the effects of climate change in the mountains fall disproportionately on both ecosystems and people.

This theme provides a space for knowledge and experience sharing and discussions on climate change adaptation in mountains, with the aim of supporting and connecting international actors working in this space. It is hosted by the Adaptation at Altitude project, funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), which aims to enhance knowledge and support knowledge transfer and exchange to increase the climate change resilience and adaptation capacities of mountain communities and ecosystems.

Examples of SDC’s work on Sustainable Mountain Development can be found here.

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Category:

Agriculture in Mountains

For mountain communities who rely on land and natural resources for their livelihoods, agriculture has been the main source of income. This category aims to present good practices of adaptation strategies for climate-smart agriculture at altitude. These also include mountain resources management that have an impact on agriculture, such as water management and irrigation. For more information on water management in mountains, see also the water stress and hazards category. Find more content on climate smart agriculture in the adaptation and mitigation synergies theme.

irrigation in nepal
Case Study

Framework for effectiveness and resilience of small- and medium-scale irrigation systems in Nepal

This paper synthesises the findings from a CDKN-funded project and is intended for policy-makers and implementers working in Nepal’s irrigation sector under uncertain conditions.

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culture land
Article

Equitable Payments for Watershed Services (EPWS) in the Uluguru Mountains, Tanzania

In the subcatchment of the Mfizigo River, a joint CARE-WWF Programme (2006-2011) promoted a PES scheme between the downstream buyers and the upstream sellers from Lukenge, Kibungo, Lanzi, Dimilo and Nyingwa villages.

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mountain agriculture
Article

The Mitigation of Climate Change in Agriculture (MICCA) project in the South Uluguru Mountains, Tanzania

This article will provide an overview of the MICCA Tanzania project initiative, which mainly focuses on the promotion of conservation agriculture and agroforestry at the community level and has a lifespan of 3 years.

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Category:

Biodiversity & Ecosystem Services

Mountains are complex and fragile environments. They heavily influence regional climate systems, are often rich in highly specialised species and numerous natural resources, and provide various ecosystem services. This category illustrates the importance of mountain landscapes and biodiversity, and the ecosystem services they provide. It features good practice examples of how these landscapes, biodiversity and services are being protected. Find more information on ecosystem-based approaches here.

Ecosystem-Based Adaptation - PANORAMA
Article

SOLUTIONS IN FOCUS: Ecosystem-Based Adaptation from Mountains to Oceans

This publication by GIZ illustrates a selection of applied EbA measures in a variety of landscapes and ecosystems - from mountain to ocean, that can be found online at the PANORAMA platform.

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EVO case study Peru
Case Study

Mountain EVO Case Study - Huamantanga district, Peru

Living with change in Huamantanga, Peru- one of the research project Mountain-EVOs case studies

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mountain-evo
Case Study

Mountain EVO Case Study: Upper Kaligandaki basin, Mustang, Nepal

This Mountain-EVO case study focuses on the Upper Kaligandaki basin in Nepal due to its relative accessibility and the strategic links with local development actors. 

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Mountain-EVO
Article

MOUNTAIN-EVO: Adaptive governance of mountain ecosystem services for poverty alleviation enabled by environmental virtual observatories

This project is about how to govern mountatin ecosystems for poverty alleviation enabled by environmental virtual observatories.

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Restoration of Páramo native vegetation near Papallacta, Ecuador.
Case Study

Protecting high mountain wetlands in Ecuador

Between 2009 and 2013, CARE worked as a strategic partner for the government of Ecuador as part of a Latin American regional project – Adaptation in Communities Facing Rapid Glacier Retreat.

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Category:

Mountain Communities

Mountains can be harsh places to live. The vulnerability of mountain communities is exacerbated by additional factors such as isolation from public services. This category brings together work relevant to understanding and promoting community resilience, including community-based adaptation, community-driven development, and urban mountain development. See the themes on community-based adaptation and vulnerability for related work and resources.

tree planting on hillside Moroccan village
Case Study

Scaling up Community-based Adaptation in Morocco's High Atlas Tifnout Valley

The Tifnout Valley's unique approach to climate change adaptation scales up the successes of individual projects through the coordinated efforts of local associations across an entire landscape.

 
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The view of Majhi community after the earthquake in 2015
Case Study

Impacts of Climate Change on the indigenous Majhi community in Nepal

This study looks at the impacts of climate change on the indigenous Majhi people in Sindhupalchowk district in Nepal, and provides important details for the design of future projects.

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Sajama
Case Study

Adaptación al Cambio Climático en Comunidades Andinas dependientes de Glaciares Tropicales

El proyecto propuso analizar los niveles de vulnerabilidad de la población al cambio climático en dos lugares afectados por el deshielo de glaciares en el Andes.

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cover
Case Study

High Mountains Adaptation Partnership: Lessons Learned in Nepal and Peru

The following report details the lessons learned during the implementation of the High Mountains Adaptation Partnership (HiMAP) (www.highmountains.org) project between March 2012 and June 2015.

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Climate knowledge in Nepal's mountainous regions
Case Study

Climate knowledge in Nepal's mountainous regions

In May 2012, the Nepal Climate Change Knowledge Management Center (NCCKMC) organized a Climate Change Awareness program in Simkot, Humla.

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Morocco
Case Study

Local Development Solutions for People, Nature and Resilient Communities

The Community-Based Adaptation project in Morocco “Land and Water protection, conservation farming and climate risk management to increase the resilience of the El Mouddaa High Altitude mountain ecosystem and reinforcement of the adaptive capacities of the local community, in the face of increasingly erratic and violent rainstorms and more and more frequent droughts” has been chosen as one of the winners of the 2012 Equator Prize (UNDP).

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Moutain women
Article

Mountain Women - Key Drivers of Change

This article focuses on understanding the functioning of mountain ecosystems in the context of livelihoods and women.

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Community mapping exercise in Lesotho: Photo Anna Taylor
Article

Climate adaptation in the mountains of Lesotho

Anecdotal evidence collected from community members in the Highlands of Lesotho indicate a keen awareness of longer term changes in the local climate and the need to adapt in response to these.

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Vietnamese community in an upland area
Case Study

Building Community Resilience to Disasters in Upland Areas of Vietnam (BCRD)

The highland areas of Vietnam are particularly vulnerable to the consequences of climate change. This study describes a far-reaching prevention program in the Kon Tum province undertaken in 2007.

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Category:

Water Stress and Hazards

Mountains often act as water towers for the low-lying regions surrounding them. In particular, the slow melt of glaciers perched at high altitudes provides a precious, steady source of water. However, the extensive lakes it collects in also present a hazard. The loss of glaciers and changes in climate are contributing to water stress. This category brings together work around water stress and water-related hazards in mountains. See the Transforming Development and Disaster Risk theme for more on reducing disaster risk.

screenshot of publication
Case Study

Hazard Assessment of Glacial Lake Outburst Flood and Potential of ICTs for Coping: A Case of Tiptala Glacial Lake, Taplejung, Nepal

This poster is one of the posters featured at the 9th International Conference on Community-Based Adaptation (CBA9) which took place in Nairobi, Kenya, from April 24-30 2015.

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The Greater Himalayan Region ©indiawaterportal.org
Case Study

Adaptation strategies to climate induced water stress and hazards in the Greater Himalayan Region

This project contributes to improved understanding of the consequences of climate change for the livelihoods of mountain people and downstream communities, particularly regarding access to water resources and vulnerability to water-induced hazards.

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Titicaca
Article

Building Capacity in two vulnerable semi-arid Mountain Regions in Bolivia

The project will focus mainly on human subsistence systems by assessing food security and human health in Bolivia.

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Road in mountain region in Bolivia
Case Study

Building Capacity in Vulnerable Mountain Regions

Climate change effects can also provoke an emergence and expansion of vector transmissible diseases such as Malaria and Chagas. To evaluate this situation and find possible preventive measures, two vulnerable semi-arid mountainous regions in Bolivia were selected as case studies: the Lake Titicaca region and the region of Vallegrande.

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Nepalese Mountains
Case Study

Nepalese Glaciers (Videos)

This programme focuses on the impact of climate change on the glacial ecosystem in the Himalayas and its people.

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