The Bangladeshi floodplains, which stretch out from the Padma, Jamuna and Meghna Rivers, are the lifeblood of communities throughout the densely-populated nation. Bangladesh has a turbulent tropical climate that brings annual monsoons as well as tropical cyclones that occasionally devastate the region. The increased variability and unpredictability of weather patterns threatens to make life on the Bangladeshi waterways more precarious than ever before. The FAO-NAPA Climate Change Adaptation Concept Note Development project is a step towards increasing resilience and reducing the vulnerability of Bangladeshi fisheries and the aquaculture sector to climate change.
In developing countries like Cambodia, riverine and coastal waters are the lifeblood of many communities, and have been for millennia. Small-scale fisheries operations feed the local populace, employ local workers, and are a way of life for millions. With demand for fish products’ soaring worldwide, aquaculture in developing nations is seen as a tantalizing opportunity to tap into a growing global market. But cashing in on this global boom is easier said than done for the predominantly poor fishers working in low-tech aquaculture operations. The Pro-poor Business Models for Small-scale Aquaculture (BMSA) project aims to alleviate poverty by identifying innovative business models and finance options that will help small-scale aquaculture enterprises take their produce from catch to market.
This project is fundamentally concerned with maintaining the flow of environmental goods and services to benefit human wellbeing, with improved human wellbeing proposed as a desirable outcome of ‘development’. The novelty of the approach is to address the challenges of environmental sustainability and resilience from a gender-sensitive wellbeing perspective, rather than from the more usual “resource-rent maximisation” perspective of fisheries economic policy.