The study assesses the spatial patterns of vulnerability to climate change in Nigeria as a backdrop to highlighting the security implications of the patterns as well as to underscore the need to mainstream climate change adaptation into the rural development process. This is necessary because policies on climate change adaptation in the country have often been made without empirical underpinnings—and, thus, without sufficient analytic rigor—on the spatial patterns of vulnerability to climate change. To achieve this aim, an integrated vulnerability assessment approach was employed by classifying socio-economic and biophysical indicators of vulnerability into adaptive capacity, sensitivity, and exposure to ascertain the degree of vulnerability of each state in Nigeria based on rural household data. The states were then grouped on the basis of similarity using hierarchical cluster analysis and mapped using 3.20a GIS software. The data for the research were obtained from Annual Abstract of Statistics 2006, General Household Survey 2006, and the Nigerian Core Welfare indicator Questionnaire Survey (CWIQ) 2006. The analysis of the patterns show that there are four classes of vulnerability to climate change in the country: high, moderate, low and very low, with average vulnerability indices of -0.01, 1.02, and 2.70 and 5.04 respectively. The analysis also shows that the most vulnerable households are in the northern states that experience frequent drought and are characterized by a high degree of rurality and poor socio-economic development. Based on the spatial picture of vulnerability to climate change and the security implications to the country, measures to mainstream climate change adaptation into rural development process were recommended including improvement in farming technology and development of grazing reserves.
|Keywords:||Climate Change, Cluster Analysis, Rural Development Process, Spatial, Patterns and Vulnerability|
Senior Lecturer, Geography and Geology, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
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