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Strengthening the resilience of vulnerable groups to disasters and climate change: sustainable energy solutions in Quy Nhon City

This paper investigates the relationship between disasters and energy supply in the coastal city of Quy Nhon, Vietnam. Although increasing attention is being paid to this issue, there are few studies that investigate the impacts of energy perturbations following extreme weather events. Drawing on multiple methods, including survey questionnaires, focus groups and key actor interviews, this research focuses on the coastal communes of Nhon Ly and Nhon Hai, Quy Nhon. The principal livelihoods in these communes are fishing and seafood processing, livelihoods which are likely to be particularly affected by climatic changes. The research finds that while all participants were connected to the electricity grid, they also experienced disruptions to their supply which were exacerbated during times of water stress and natural disasters, including typhoons. The impacts of perturbations in the energy supply include higher costs for alternative energy sources, the need to hire additional labour and worsened working conditions. This research also finds that, in spite of awareness of climate change and its impacts, adaptation measures are not being considered either by households or the commune. Instead, commune authorities and residents rely on coping mechanisms after the disasters have struck. Vulnerable groups, including women, fishermen and seafood processors, who have less access to financial capital, are particularly affected by disasters. Small-scale renewable energy (SSRE) technologies could provide major benefits for these communes. SSREs include micro-wind and biogas energy-generation technologies, as well as improved cooking stoves and solar-powered lanterns. However, the adoption of these technologies is limited by financial constraints and unfavourable energy markets. The paper concludes with recommendations for how to increase energy resilience in the face of increased disaster risks, which include changes to the energy market, adequate financing mechanisms and participatory local energy planning to help the poorest households.

Publication information

  • IIED code: 10710IIED
  • Published: Jun 2014 - IIED
  • Area: Vietnam
  • Theme: Urban
  • ISBN: 978-1-78431-064-6
  • Language: English

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The Asian Cities Climate Change Resilience Network (ACCCRN) is an eight-year, multi-country initiative working with cities across the world to increase resilience to climate change. IIED is a regional partner within ACCCRN.

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