Surat Municipal Corporation (SMC) with The Southern Gujarat Chamber of Commerce & Industry initiated, in the year 2008, the process of
(i) assessing the likely impacts of climate change on the socioeconomic life of Surat ;
(ii) identifying the probable challenges in future and
(iii) initiating the formulation of viable and thoughtful strategies to address the same.
This process included analysis of some of the critical sectors of the socio-economic life of Surat, such as water, energy, environment, transportation, flood risk management and health. More significantly, for perhaps the first time, an assessment was made of the vulnerability of different sections of the population to the changing weather patterns that may result in, increased precipitation, frequent flooding, changes in disease patterns, sea level rise, increasing energy demand etc.
In year 2012 a Special Purpose Vehicle, Surat Climate Change Trust (SCCT) a city level public trust registered under Bombay Public Trust Act 1950 (Registration No. E-7266/Surat) was formed which was promoted by SMC, which comprises of members from various institutions including SMC, SGCCI, Sardar Vallabhbhai National Institute of Technology (SVNIT), Center for Social Studies (CSS) and state level stakeholders such as NWRWS as well GSDMA and others at Surat,
The work under SCCT and the Asian Cities Climate Change Resilience Network (ACCCRN) initiative in Surat over the past more than two years establishes the nexus between urban systems, poverty related challenges, underlying city vulnerabilities and
the overriding phenomena of climate change and the risks posed thereby. Vulnerability of the city, if not recognized and addressed, will only exacerbate with accelerated incidence of extreme weather events and rising sea levels.
Therefore, the process of formulation of a city resilience strategy was initiated in Surat. Realizing the cross-sectoral nature of the impacts, the City Advisory Committee adopted an interactive and holistic approach entailing engagement with a wide array of stakeholders. A number of Risk to Resilience workshops were held.
The City Resilience Strategy (CRS) is an attempt to assess the key city vulnerabilities, the risks and challenges likely to be posed to the city of Surat by the processes associated with climate change, the likely impacts on crucial sectors of city’s socio-economic life and the kind of adaptation interventions which can be taken to address the same.
SMC and SCCT have jointly, in year 2013, collaborated to participate an initiative, 100 Resilient Cities, Pioneered by The Rockefeller Foundation
About 100 Resilient Cities—Pioneered by The Rockefeller Foundation
100 Resilient Cities - Pioneered by The Rockefeller Foundation (100RC) helps cities around the world become more resilient to social, economic, and physical challenges that are a growing part of the 21st century. 100RC provides this assistance through: funding for a Chief Resilience Officer in each of our cities who will lead the resilience efforts; resources for drafting a resilience strategy; access to private sector, public sector, academic, and NGO resilience tools; and membership in a global network of peer cities to share best practices and challenges. 100RC currently has 67 member cities. For more information, visit: www.100ResilientCities.org.
Surat is one of the fastest growing cities in the world, experiencing rapid industrialization and migration. According to World Bank Sustainable Development Network, it’s also one of the world’s most climate change affected cities. In the past 100 years, Surat has experienced 23 floods, including a significant one in 2013, and an outbreak of the plague in 1994. The city’s most pressing urban resilience priorities are: learning lessons from past events; building community and social resilience for early response to floods; preventing vector-borne diseases; and improving nutrition, water management and the electric grid.