Perceptions of Climate Change Across Different Climate-Risk Zones in Bangladesh

Public perceptions of vulnerability to climate change across different climate-risk zones in Bangladesh are explored through a nationally representative sample of 33,554 households across all districts, from zones of vulnerabilities (as identified from national policy reports) and regional impacts of climate change (as identified by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Remarkably, considering that the impacts of climate change to date are much less strongly expressed in Bangladesh than at higher latitudes, a significant proportion of respondents perceived changes in the climatic variables identified by the IPCC. Moreover, the increased risk is perceived by a greater proportion of respondents from vulnerable districts. There is a weaker perception of change for some other issues such as riverbank erosion and regional reduction in precipitation, which suggest that these hazards are not well communicated to communities at risk. On the other hand, certain changes reported have not been included in policy reports, indicating the importance of finding better ways to reflect on-the-ground experiences in the policy. As climate impacts are often indistinguishable from risks arising from localized human activities and environmental degradation, the findings call for a more nuanced analysis of how risks associated with climate change interact with natural hazards and social and economic issues. There is a need for pathways to enable ground-up, evidence-based experience to inform policy.

Authors: Kamal, Rohini; Islam, Md. Saiful; Risha, Adeeba Nuraina
Type: Journal article
Year: 2022