Reflections from Kuakata Seashore: Developing a Local Climate Adaptation Plan (LCAP)

The first time I heard the name Local Climate Adaptation Plan (LCAP), I didn’t understand what it meant and I asked one of my colleagues about it. After her explanation, I found the topic to be genuinely intriguing and I felt a desire to delve deeper into it. Fortunately, just one week after this conversation I got an opportunity to attend a Training of Trainers (ToT) focus on LCAP at Kuakata. It was an unexpected and pleasantly surprising opportunity for me that came at very short notice.

The purpose of our visit to Kuakata was to facilitate a ToT. This training initiative was part of the project titled “Building Climate Resilient Migrant-Friendly Towns through Locally Led Adaptation (LLA) in Bangladesh”. This project is financially supported by UKAID, where ICCCAD is collaborating with the Global Centre for Adaptation (GCA), BRAC and SPARC (Society for the Promotion of Area Resource Centres) as partners. The ToT aims to build the knowledge and capacity of BRAC’s implementation Team regarding CRMFT. It is a four-day long training programme with our sessions allocated for the last two days. Our primary focus for the training was Climate Change Literature, processes of Community Climate Vulnerability Assessment (CCVA) and Development of  Climate Adaptation Plans (Community level, Ward level and Town level).

On the road to Kuakata

It was the second week of August and the four of us from ICCCAD started the trip towards Kuakata early in the morning. Despite it being a 10-hour journey, I enjoyed the truly captivating scenery along the way. We finally reached our destination around 4pm and upon arrival, I had the pleasure of meeting the most charming person on this entire tour, Rukshar Sultana, a manager at BRAC. She welcomed us with a warm greeting.

Witnessing a ravishing sunset at Kuakata Beach

Daughter of the sea, Kuakata offered a truly mesmerizing experience with its ravishing sunset. Although it was not my first time at Kuakata sea beach, every time I set foot on its shore, it feels as if it was my first encounter there. We met some of our BRAC Colleagues at the beach area and together we enjoyed the timeless and everchanging beauty of the sunset with a cup of Tandoori tea.

First day at Training of Trainers (ToT)

The next day, ICCCAD’s training session started. It was a very tight schedule to cover all the topics and our team did excellent in time management and delivered all the topics effectively. Juel Mahmud, Programme Coordinator, Climate Change and Displacement, started the session with a basic summary of climate change. In his session, he highlighted the basic causes and impacts of climate change. He also highlighted the national and international policies on climate change and humanity’s role in saving our planet.

After that, I got the chance to take a session titled “Climate Change Vulnerability and Adaptation” where I introduced the participants to some basic climate change terminology such as ‘hazard’, ‘disaster’, ‘vulnerability’, ‘exposure’, ‘adaptive capacity’ and so on.  The session included group work and ended with the participants giving a poster presentation on different climate terminologies.

In turn, Sumaiya Binte Selim, Programme Coordinator Gender, presented on climate change adaptation and explained the different stages along with the definition of maladaptation. After that, our Coordinator Locally Led Adaptation (LLA) Programme, Savio Rousseau Rozario, conducted an online session where he highlighted the importance of leadership in LLA. His session also included group work requiring the participants to develop their own plan considering the eight principles of LLA.

Photo Credit: Nazmus Sakib

Local Climate Adaptation Plan (LCAP):

In the second half of the first day, the long-awaited LCAP session started. At the beginning of the session Nazmus Sakib, Project Officer, explained the roadmap to develop a local adaptation plan (LAP). Juel Mahmud then started the main session with the primary concept of LCAP. Here he mentioned that,

The Local Climate Adaptation Plan (LCAP) is a guiding document for the local communities to undertake and implement climate adaptation measures at the local level (Community Level)”.

He also explained the necessity of the LCAP to build climate-resilient cities as well as the necessity of community participation in the overall process. Creating an LCAP is completely a community-led process, where project staff only facilitate the process. At the beginning, the project management team identify the climate-vulnerable migrant hotspots within the working area and then the team perform a community climate vulnerability assessment (CCVA) with community leaders. The first day of the workshop ended with the participants developing a draft CCVA.

On the second day of training, participants got hands-on experience in developing comprehensive local climate adaptation and implementation plans. Participants learnt to identify and prioritize interventions within an implementation timeframe. At the end of this session all the participants, including me, had a clear understanding of LCAPs and the process to develop them.

Photo Credit: Nazmus Sakib

Afternoon Delights at the Sea Shore and Joubon

After the session, we went to visit Joubon. about two or three kilometres from our hotel. We started our journey in a local vehicle called a ‘van’. On the way to Joubon, the livelihood of fisherman and their family engagement in fishing and natural resource extraction left a profound feeling on me. Witnessing their isolation, particularly the women and children (who are often marginalized due to their dependency on nature and the ocean) reminded me of the struggle of life. Just for a moment, I felt sad for them but at the same time, I realized nature knows the best way to treat its creatures. We took many pictures and came back to our hotel in the evening.

We started our journey back home at 6pm, finishing our field trip with countless memories, a deep sense of gratitude and a fervent desire to return in the future.

Photo Credit: Rukshar Sultana

About the Authors:
Naznine Nahar is working as a Project officer-CAPRES at International Centre for Climate Change and Development (ICCCAD).