Local knowledge and adaptation to climate change in Ouémé Valley, Benin
R.A.B. Kpadonou, P.Y. Adégbola and S.D. Tovignan
African Crop Science Journal vol. 20, Issue Supplement s2, 2012

This paper highlights the local dimension of adaptation to climate change and the importance of local knowledge in adaptation planning. A case study of farmers’ strategies for adapting to climate vulnerability in the low valley of Ouémé showed that local people have developed a remarkable ability to adapt to climate threats, or in some cases have turned threats into opportunities. From fishing practices to agricultural techniques through agro-fishing practices, they managed to take advantage of their natural vulnerability through adaptation strategies mainly based on local knowledge. The trend of these local strategies confirms the dynamic nature of adaptation to climate change mainly determined by the extent of vulnerability caused by continued depletion of the environment. But given that this dynamic can sometimes lead to maladaptation, it is necessary that local people are assisted in their coping strategies, through synergies between local institutions and national and international adaptation frameworks. Download the article [pdf] …