Climate Change Adaptation in Belize

Topic: Assessing Alternative Resiliency Strategies in Under-resourced Coastal Communities in Belize Impacted by Climate Change and Vulnerable to Environmental Risk.

Team: I2UD, Elizabeth Hamin, Jan Meerman

Sponsor: Lincoln Institute of Land Policy

Project Duration: November 2014 – December 2015

I2UD, in partnership with Dr. Elizabeth Hamin from UMass Amherst and environmentalist and GIS specialist Jan Meerman, are researching and formulating alternative resiliency strategies for Dangriga, an at-risk coastal community in Belize, limited in its financial and institutional capacity to address impacts of flooding and rising sea levels due to climate change. Supported by the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, this project builds on the Institute’s work on developing Municipal Development Plans in seven municipalities through the Belize Municipal Development Project, funded by the World Bank and implemented by the Social Investment Fund of Belize.

In collaboration with the Dangriga Local Planning Working Group (LPWG), the project team, led by Jim Kostaras, will incorporate local knowledge into the design of resiliency strategies for a targeted at-risk neighborhood. An important objective will be to consider strategies to integrate resiliency planning into local land use planning and management. Through the research process, the team will formulate an outline of a decision making framework for investments in resiliency for use by municipalities in Belize that considers public and private investments and instruments to finance, implement, and maintain these investments, including community partnerships and land policy mechanisms. The study will include a workshop attended by municipal officials, members of the LPWG, and members of civil society and the business community to discuss proposed strategies and engage the community to inform final products of the study.

Learn more about I2UD’s previous capacity building work in Belize here.