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04 April 2019

In a recently released research brief, CEPSA Researcher and Strauss Distinguished Scholar, Dr. Joshua Busby and his team discuss climate change vulnerability in South and Southeast Asia. CEPSA Research Brief No. 12, titled “Climate Security Vulnerability in Asia V2”, presents the updated findings of the Asian Climate Security Vulnerability model version 2 (ACSV V2), an attempt to map sub-national climate security vulnerability in 11 countries in South and Southeast Asia. South Asian countries include Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka. Southeast Asian countries include Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam.

Climate security vulnerability, as measured in the report, corresponds to four markers – physical exposure, population density, household and community resilience, and governance – each of which is generated from a number of indicators. Research Brief No. 12’s findings, using ACSV version 2 are largely synonymous with findings from version 1, released in 2016. However, by accounting for heat waves as an indicator for physical exposure, version 2 highlights exposure in Pakistan and Northwestern India.

Busby and his team hope the maps can be used to inform local decision and to guide external actors’ interventions and priorities in the region, but they warn that these maps must be applied critically. Ultimately the report concludes, “these climate vulnerability maps are meant to serve as preliminary focal points for discussion and research with country and regional experts. They will inspire a reaction and critical conversation. However, if policymakers blithely embrace them as guides for investment decisions, that itself would be a disservice. Decision-makers need to be aware and critical of the assumptions of any model meant to inform their choices.”

Explore the maps and read the full report here.

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