EnvironmentDec 13, 2022
Meeting the Climate Challenge: A Call for Responsible Land Governance in the Arab Region
- Mona Khechen
The convergence of climate-related and human-induced environmental hazards in the Arab region is expected to displace record numbers of people; increase conflicts over access to, and control of, land and water resources; threaten food security; and pose new security risks that jeopardize the region’s development, peace, and stability.
Droughts, floods, Sea Level Rise (SLR), and other climatic phenomena are imminent threats in many countries, impacting directly or indirectly rural and urban areas and their economies. Poor land management, privatization of public and communal lands, and overexploitation of natural resources are key anthropogenic factors accelerating land degradation and increasing people’s and land’s susceptibility to climatic risks.
How are Arab countries responding to the impact of climate change on land and land-based livelihoods? What priority actions do they need to take to ensure that smallholders and socially vulnerable groups are not disproportionally harmed by climate-related natural processes and hazards? How can they address soaring inequalities in access to land and natural resources owing to unabated changing climate patterns?Mona Khechen is an independent urban and regional development planner and researcher, a Senior Fellow at LCPS (2019-2021), and a part-time faculty member in the Department of Landscape Design and Ecosystem Management at the American University of Beirut (AUB). She has provided consultancy services to various international organizations (AFD, UN-ESCWA, UNDP, UN-Habitat, World Bank) and worked with the private and the non-profit sectors in Lebanon and abroad. She holds BArch from AUB, MSc in Development and Planning from University College London, and a Doctor of Design (PhD equivalent) with a focus on urban heritage and development from Harvard University.