Project Description

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This Social and Economic Assessment complements the other sectoral reports in the USAID Mekong ARCC Climate Change Impact and Adaptation Study by assessing the vulnerability to climate change of two critical sectors of household livelihood systems: health and rural infrastructure. Human health is critical to livelihoods because it is the foundation of productivity in all activities. Inadequate health access limits the capacity of individuals to farm, fish, gather NTFPs, or attend to livestock. Moreover, adequate health ensures the nutritional benefits of food consumption are realized and is an important, but often forgotten, component of food security. The inability of one working member of a household to work due to poor health reduces household income and therefore impacts on the income and food security of all members of a household and potentially the broader community.

The countries of the Lower Mekong Basin (LMB) have seen significant advances in socio-economic development over recent decades. The overall incidence of poverty and food insecurity has declined in response to rising incomes, rural-urban migration, improved health conditions, and the expansion of rural infrastructure. Despite this progress, however, there remain tens of millions of rural poor who are dependent on the LMB’s natural resources and, by consequence, are highly exposed to climate change.

About Sector Analysis Reports

Sector analysis reports were prepared to describe anticipated climate change impacts on key livelihood sectors of the LMB, including agriculture, capture fisheries and aquaculture, livestock, and non-timber forest products, as well as on protected areas and socio-economics. These reports served as important references and contributed substantively to the analysis and results of the Climate Change Impact and Adaptation Study for the Lower Mekong Basin.

Other reports in the series include:

The Mekong Adaptation and Resilience to Climate Change (ARCC) project was carried out by ICEM in partnership with DAI and SEA START for U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to generate new data, new approaches and to spur adaptive change in the Mekong River Basin.