This week the Climate Asia
team are travelling to Warsaw where negotiators from around 190 countries are
meeting to try to advance steps towards a global climate agreement.
It's the 19th
annual Conference of the Parties (COP) to the UN Framework Convention on
Climate Change (UNFCC) and the latest opportunity for us to share the
findings of our research project which paints a picture of how people are
living and dealing with climate change in seven Asian countries.
Over the past month, our team has met with media, civil
society organisations, governments, businesses and academics across Asia to
show them how they could know their audiences better and improve the way
climate change is communicated.
We've been fascinated to see how people are responding to
and what they plan to use them for.
The Climate Asia data portal
In our research we not only found that people had noticed
changes in temperature, rainfall and extreme weather, but that many were
already taking action.
Saleemul Huq, Executive Director of
Bangladesh Centre for Advanced Studies, emphasised the importance of this focus
on action: "This survey has done us a great service in providing the
voices of the poor. This issue is no longer about people’s vulnerability
but how they are taking action," he said.
Abetnego Tarigan from
Indonesia's oldest and largest environmental advocacy group WALHI, also saw in our data an opportunity to change the
conversation about climate change in his country.
Instead of just concentrating on how to reduce emissions of
greenhouse gases, he said the Climate Asia findings threw into focus the issue
of how people adapt to changes in climate.
“I should admit, in Indonesia discussion on adaptation is limited,” he said.
“These research results bring us back to the
fact that we should be expanding our talk beyond mitigation.”
Duong Thi Thu Huong, a media expert in Vietnam,
told us she was excited about the possibility of examining more of the data
can see the potential for additional data analysis in
order to understand in more detail different target
audiences of climate change communication in the future.”
The Antenna Foundation in Nepal, meanwhile, is already planning
to use the data to target and reach audiences: "The survey data is
comprehensive,” they told us, “and this will help prepare communication
materials for targeted communities."
Our data is just the beginning of
the story - by sharing it with a global audience at events such as COP2013, we
hope it will inspire new opportunities to communicate with people across Asia,
to inspire more action and
improve people’s live as they respond and adapt to climate change.