Rocinha (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) is the largest favela in South America. It is located on a steep mountain slope in the Tijuca National Park with a population of over 160,000 living in poor environmental, health and hygiene conditions. The geomorphological and urban setting of Rocinha makes it vulnerable to natural hazards, with the greatest risk posed by flooding or landslides, compromising the precarious balance between ecosystem services (ES) provision and human well-being. The paper aims to assess and map ES provision in a context where available data to identify areas vulnerable to natural risks is limited. The ES analyses were adapted to the specific socio-economic and environmental context of favelas, which are characterized by dense, continuously built-up environment and a high proportion of impervious surfaces, leading to deteriorating environmental, health and hygiene conditions over time. The ES-based approach was pivotal for setting out strategies – including nature-based solutions (NBS) – to mitigate disaster risk and increase local resilience. These strategies were selected taking into account the context of Rocinha and feasibility. The research shows that ES assessment can be the starting point for projects based on NBS with a view to increasing resilience even in environmentally critical contexts.

Adopting an Ecosystem Services-Based Approach for Flood Resilient Strategies. The case of Rocinha Favela (Brazil)

S. Ronchi;A. Arcidiacono
2019-01-01

Abstract

Rocinha (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) is the largest favela in South America. It is located on a steep mountain slope in the Tijuca National Park with a population of over 160,000 living in poor environmental, health and hygiene conditions. The geomorphological and urban setting of Rocinha makes it vulnerable to natural hazards, with the greatest risk posed by flooding or landslides, compromising the precarious balance between ecosystem services (ES) provision and human well-being. The paper aims to assess and map ES provision in a context where available data to identify areas vulnerable to natural risks is limited. The ES analyses were adapted to the specific socio-economic and environmental context of favelas, which are characterized by dense, continuously built-up environment and a high proportion of impervious surfaces, leading to deteriorating environmental, health and hygiene conditions over time. The ES-based approach was pivotal for setting out strategies – including nature-based solutions (NBS) – to mitigate disaster risk and increase local resilience. These strategies were selected taking into account the context of Rocinha and feasibility. The research shows that ES assessment can be the starting point for projects based on NBS with a view to increasing resilience even in environmentally critical contexts.
Ecosystem Services; Nature-based solutions; flood resilience strategies; Rocinha Favela; water upstream
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11311/1071024
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