Mitigating Climate Change in Sundarbans: Role of Social and Solidarity Economy in Mangrove Conservation and Livelihood Generation

Abstract - EN

This paper sheds some light on the role of SSE actors in meeting regional specific needs (Gosaba community block of Indian Sundarbans) in the context of the SDGs. Mapping of the ‘conditions of necessity’ in the study region enables us to specify regional specific needs of Gosaba block (viz. mangrove restoration works, exploration of non-farm sectors (specifically pisciculture) in providing livelihood of asset deprivation households), which warrants SSE intervention. In the post Aila scenario, effective intervention of SSE change agents in mitigating climate change in Gosaba block ultimately rests on the generation of alternative livelihood opportunity of the forest dependent population so as to reduce biotic pressure of the mangrove forests. An assessment of the current practice of SSE actors in the light of shared vision principles (socially responsible governance, edifying values, social development services, ecological conservation measures and economic sustainability measures) reveals that non-governmental organizations (NEWS, SANGRAM, PEHC) secured higher performance score than state sponsored voluntary organizations (EDCs). Interestingly, scale of operation, level of financial assistance and range of activity levels can significantly determine the variation in the performance score of SSE initiatives in this regional context.