Building urban resilience to climate change: a review of South Africa

Building urban resilience to climate change: a review of South Africa

This assessment examines the legal and regulatory environment, intergovernmental coordination, information generation and information sharing, climate change adaptation (CCA) capacity (and urban management capacity more generally), and financial resources and financial mechanisms available in South Africa to address urban CCA priorities. 

South Africa has an established, robust and transparent governance structure that includes well-defined national, provincial and municipal jurisdictions, with government entities at each level whose responsibilities are codified in law and regulation. This framework creates a solid foundation for municipal governance and service delivery to residents and commercial enterprises. 

However, South African municipalities face substantial challenges to maintaining and improving municipal governance as the country continues to address apartheid-era economic, spatial, political and social inequities while simultaneously facing the global rural-to-urban migration trend and its implications for basic service delivery and overall economic development. These challenges are compounded by increased climate change risks such as rising temperatures and increased frequency of extreme events such as droughts, floods and storm surges.

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