Least Developed Countries, we know, will be heavily impacted by climate change. Indeed, drought, storm-caused flooding, rising sea levels, and heat waves are already taking their tolls in those 50-some nations. But LDCs don't have enough resources to adapt adequately to adverse weather that regularly devastates communities and their ecosystems, reinforcing poverty. The International Institute for Environment and Development details this mounting problem on its website. It's not just the costs of adaptation for LDCs, but also a shortage of human resources, which, as the Institute says, are needed for "pressing and clearly definable issues such as health, employment, housing and education."
One way out of this bind is what the Institute is doing through its climate-change initiative -- "supporting, increasing and utilising the capacity of development practitioners, government agencies, NGOs and community-based organisations to enhance resilience to climate change."
DM2009 and its finalists are a perfect fit.
The IIED was founded in 1971 by economist Barbara Ward, a pioneer in promoting sustainable development, who frequently wrote about the disparities she saw in global wealth distribution.
The above graphic -- from the IIED -- lists LDCs, including Small Island Developing States (SIDS), which are especially vulnerable to rising sea levels.