One of the greatest challenges for climate change adaptation is how to build resilience for the billion urban dwellers who are estimated to live in what are termed informal settlements. This paper highlights the importance for climate change resilience of ‘risk reducing’ infrastructure and services and how the lack of provision for such infrastructure and services is at the core of a lack of resilience.
For infrastructure, this lack of provision includes no paved roads and paths to each dwelling, no regular, good quality water piped to homes, inadequate or no provision for sanitation, waste water disposal, electricity, street lights and storm and surface drains. For services, this includes a lack of health care, emergency services, household waste collection and policing.
This paper demonstrates how those living and/or working in informal settlements lack most or all of these – with very serious consequences for the risks they face, for their health and for building resilience to climate change impacts.