Climate-Fragility Profile: Lake Chad Basin

Lake Chad Climate-Fragility Profile - adelphi
Nagarajan, Chitra; Benjamin Pohl, Lukas Rüttinger, Florence Sylvestre, Janani Vivekananda, Martin Wall and Susanne Wolfmaier 2018: Climate-Fragility Profile: Lake Chad Basin. Berlin: adelphi.

Climate change is increasingly recognised as a ‘threat multiplier’ that interacts with and compounds existing risks and pressures. When climate change converges and interacts with other environmental, economic, social, and political shocks and pressures, it can increase the likelihood of instability or conflict. This threat is particularly virulent in fragile and conflict-affected situations where governments and societal institutions already struggle to achieve security and equitable development. At the same time, conflicts and fragility often contribute to environmental degradation and undermine the ability to adapt to climate change, thus creating a vicious circle of increasing vulnerability and fragility.

The Lake Chad Basin region is currently experiencing one of the world’s greatest humanitarian crises. More than 10 million people are in need of immediate humanitarian assistance and 3.7 million people are expected to face severe food insecurity in north-east Nigeria during the upcoming lean season. The crisis was triggered by violence linked to armed opposition groups, such as ‘Boko Haram’ and ‘Islamic State West Africa’. But the underlying causes for the insecurity go beyond the current violence and are rooted in the region’s historical context. In addition, an increasingly changing climate exacerbates the challenges already faced by the predominantly rural population around Lake Chad, most of whom rely on farming, fishing, and raising livestock.

This Climate-Fragility profile summarises the key challenges the Lake Chad region is experiencing as a consequence of the interplay between climate change and fragility. The Climate-Fragility profile is envisaged as a first component of the Lake Chad Risk Assessment project. The project aims at identifying climate-fragility risks in the Lake Chad region and providing recommendations for policy-makers and donors engaged in the region to plan, design, implement and evaluate policies and programmes to respond positively to these risks.

For further information on the profile, please contact Janani Vivekananda.