Climate researchers are increasingly using the term “maladaptation” to describe adaptation measures that bring unforeseen negative consequences to local communities.
From building levees that inadvertently increased flood risk in Bangladesh to a hydroelectric dam that cut off land access in Vietnam, examples of maladaptation are popping up all over the world.
In the U.S., Miami has invested hundreds of millions of dollars in stormwater pumps and elevated roads to combat flooding from rising seas. And it will need to invest billions more to save the city from chronic flooding. But the UN report says those early investments might have caused unintended impacts.
This week: the story of how Miami’s flood investments might be leading to maladaptation – and what other cities around the world can learn from it.
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