By Tom Crowley, Programme Leader: Sustainable Livelihoods and Environmental Justice
Last week saw 30 Bolivian professionals earn a Diploma in Risk Management and Adaptation to Climate Change.
This important initiative between Trócaire, Practical Action, the University of San Andres and the Bolivian Civil Defense is part of critical capacity-building work to help the country cope with the enormous challenge that climate change poses. There are already plans to roll out programmes in three other universities there.
Graduating class, Diploma in Risk Management and Adaptation to Climate Change. Photo: Practical Action Bolivia
Bolivia is one of the most vulnerable countries to natural disasters and climate change in the world.
The combination of Bolivia’s physical geography and its socio-economic profile, with a third of the population living in extreme poverty, leaves the country and its people particularly vulnerable. Bolivia’s receding tropical glaciers are symbolic of the increasing challenge of water availability across many regions of the country as climate change advances.
Yet, it only contributes to 0.01% of world’s greenhouse gas emissions.
To reduce its vulnerability it’s necessary for both the private and public sector to increase their technical capacity to incorporate risk management and climate change adaptation into their work and development plans.
In Bolivia there is a still a shortage of professionals with the necessary knowledge and skills required. This education programme goes some way to addressing that – empowering people within the country and within communities.