2nd International Conference on Community-Based Adaptation (CBA2)

Article, 14 April 2016

Leading climate experts discuss climate change and adaptation at a major conference in Dhaka.

Conference organiser Saleemul Huq receives the "Burtoni" award: from left to right: Ian Burton (IPCC lead author), Roger Jones (CSIRO), Atiq Rahman (BCAS), Saleemul Huq (IIED) and Richard Klein (SEI) (Photo: IISD)

More than 110 policymakers and representatives from non-governmental organisations, research and policy institutes, as well as development practitioners and media, attended the 2nd International Conference on Community-Based Adaptation (CBA2) to climate change in Dhaka in February 2007.

Organised jointly by the Bangladesh Center for Advanced Studies (BCAS), IIED and the RING Alliance of Policy Research Organisations, the conference included two days of field trips to sites across Bangladesh, followed by three days of discussions about the latest developments in CBA programmes, priorities and solutions.

The first day of the formal conference programme focused on the issue of how to integrate climate science into CBA while maintaining a community-driven process.  

Ian Burton, lead author of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) spoke at the opening plenary. Burton said information on adaptation had "filtered down" since the signing of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in 1992. He added that a reverse process of "flooding up" was needed, to allow adaptation information to be brought to the UNFCCC.

Burton said this process might be achieved by synthesising and generalising information, developing models of adaptation, and calculating adaptation costs. 

The first day also saw IIED's Saleemul Huq receive an award for his work on linking adaptation and development and on capacity building. The Burtoni Award was created by a group of leading experts in climate change and is named after its first recipient, Ian Burton.

The final day of the conference included an address by Sri Lankan economist and vice-chair of the IPCC, Mohan Munasinghe. Munasinghe discussed the most recent IPCC findings. He said climate change would exacerbate problems related to development, poverty and food security.

Munasinghe said there was a lack of certainty over what level of mitigation should be the target to keep CO2 concentrations below dangerous levels. He said even with mitigation efforts, the temperature would continue to rise, and adaptation would be required. 

He added that climate change policies should combine both adaptation and mitigation. He suggested that the high profile gained by climate change should be used for maximum benefit, and called for the integration of climate change into sustainable development policy.

Conference materials

IISD reporting services prepared a report on CBA2 (PDF).

IISD also published a selection of photos from the CBA2 field trips to different sites across Bangladesh.

Following the conference, IIED's Huq and Hannah Reid prepared a briefing on CBA, entitled Community-Based Adaptation. A vital approach to the threat climate change poses to the poor.

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