The negative impacts of climate change and urbanization on water security in South Asia are escalating. Their combined effects are increasingly being felt in peri-urban areas, which tend to bear the burden of intensifying water and land pressures associated with urbanization. But, even as processes of climate change and urbanization are raising concerns related to water and land security and equitable distribution of scarce natural resources for peri-urban centres, critical knowledge gaps still persist.
A consortium of north-south institutions brings together experience, skills and know-how in research, capacity-building and knowledge generation in its project Climate Policy, Conflicts and Cooperation in Peri-Urban South Asia: Towards Resilient and Water Secure Communities. This collaborative endeavour, spanning four years and four cities (Khulna in Bangladesh, Kathmandu in Nepal, and Gurgaon and Hyderabad in India), seeks to fill two major knowledge gaps by researching:
-How urbanization and climate change interact in inducing water insecurity in specific settings, creating potential for conflict or even cooperation
-How current water, climate change and other relevant policies influence the potential for water‐related cooperation and conflict
The project evaluates how the processes of climate change and urbanization are creating growing problems of water insecurity in the peri-urban areas of these four rapidly expanding cities. It seeks to improve mutual learning, strengthen institutional and community capacities to optimally manage water insecurity, and bolster resilience. It also aims to support and empower communities to effectively use, manage and govern their water resources against a backdrop of water insecurity caused by the dual impact of climate change and urbanization.