Authors:Edna Alencar (Federal University of Pará - UFPA)
Isabel Sousa (Instituto de Desenvolvimento Sustentável Mamirauá - IDSM)
Paper short abstract:
For the last 20 years in the floodplains of the RDS Mamirauá, Amazonas, Brazil, recurring extreme climatic events such as floods and droughts are changing the landscapes and the ways of life. This article points out some responses of local populations when faced with these changes in the landscapes.
Paper long abstract:
In the floodplains of the RDS Mamirauá lapped by the Solimões River, in the state of Amazonas, the seasonal variation in water level followed a regular calendar, set in two periods: the flood (rainy season) and the drought (dry season). The local population of the villages along this river made diverse use of this ecosystem for their livelihood, and developed strategies to inhabit this changing environment and face its seasonality. Their cumulative ecological knowledge, techniques and skills allowed them to identify patterns and to elaborate forecasts to carry out agriculture, fishing and logging. In the last 20 years, climate variability and climate warming caused extraordinary hydrological events such as extreme floods and droughts, changing the timing of seasonality and the depth and duration of flooding. The floods of 1999, 2009, 2012 and 2014 and the droughts of 1995, 2005 and 2010 affected the lives of riverine people by changing the calendar of production and altering the landscapes, drawing attention to the effects of climate change on the ecosystem. Based on a case study of the village of San Francisco, this paper analyzes the responses of local people to address events that transform their landscapes, modify the frequency and duration of flooding and alter their way of life and interactions with their environment. The implementation of new strategies to develop forecasts, organize agricultural and fishing calendars or replace their stilt houses for houseboats, indicates a new regime of coexistence strategies when facing climate and landscape unpredictability.
Amphibious dwelling: exploring life between wet and dry