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How do local communities adapt to climate changes along heavily damaged coasts? A Stakeholder Delphi study in Ky Anh (Central Vietnam)

Nguyen, AnThinh, Vu, AnhDung, Dang, GiangT. H., Hoang, AnhHuy, Hens, Luc
Environment, development and sustainability 2018 v.20 no.2 pp. 749-767
Delphi method, agricultural land, aquaculture, climate, climate change, coasts, drought, ecosystems, farmers, fish, fishermen, floods, irrigation systems, land use, livelihood, mining, population growth, renewable energy sources, rural planning, stakeholders, storms, Vietnam
The Central Vietnamese coast faces increasing impacts on the local livelihoods of coastal communities as a result of the increasing natural hazards which include tropical storms, heavy rains, and floods. A challenge for the local populations is improving their adaptation capacity to climate change hazards in a sustainable way. This study deals with the impacts of climate change-associated hazards and adaptation capacity in coastal communes of the Ky Anh district, Ha Tinh province along the coast in Central Vietnam. A combination of the Stakeholder Delphi technique and the DPSIR (drivers–pressures–states–impacts–responses) framework was used. Delphi questionnaires allowed assessing the consensus among the respondents of a stakeholder group. Twenty questions and 20 statements were listed reflecting the DPSIR components. Thirty-six panel members, which were randomly selected from four stakeholder groups which included local authorities, farmers, fishermen, and fish traders, were involved in a two-round Delphi process. The results show that, both agricultural and non-agricultural sectors are main drivers (D); migration, calamities, population growth, mineral mining, aquaculture processing, and agriculture are main pressures (P); changes in the frequency of extreme weather events, increasing intensity of storms, floods, and droughts indicate main states (S); changes in agricultural land use and productivity are main impacts (I); construction of and upgrading dykes and irrigation systems should be the principal responses (R) in the vision of the local stakeholders. The Kendall’s W value for the second round is 0.681, indicating a high degree of consensus among the panel members and confidence in the ranks. Overall, the study advocates developing sustainable ecosystems, an upgraded New Rural Planning, and renewable energy strategies as the main local adaptations to climate change hazards in this area.