Climate Change Response Strategies and Implications on Sustainable Development Goals in Mutirikwi River Sub-Catchment of Zimbabwe

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Chenjerai Ziti
Lazarus Chapungu
Godwell Nhamo


Sub-catchment level water sector response strategies to climate change in Zimbabwe have not been adequately analyzed to determine their impact and connectedness with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In this study, the mixed methods research design is used to examine the implications of water sector climate change response strategies (CCRS) on SDGs in Mutirikwi sub-catchment in Masvingo, Zimbabwe. Results show that the climate is changing, with a statistically significant (p = 0.031; α = 0.05) increase in the annual mean temperature and a declining rainfall trend, though not statistically significant (p=0.753; α = 0.05). Views from local communities and stakeholders confirm the existence of climate change. There is a deluge of response strategies to the changing climate, including borehole drilling, roof rainwater harvesting, surface storage, water reuse and water transfers. These strategies have directly contributed to the achievement of SDG 6 (Clean Water and Sanitation), SDG 11 (Sustainable Settlements), and SDG 13 (Climate Action). They have also indirectly contributed to the achievement of SDG 3 (Health), SDG 5 (Gender), SDG 9 (Infrastructure) SDG 12 (Sustainable Consumption) and SDG 15 (Life on Land). The study concludes that there is an inextricable link between CCRS and SDGs. However, implementation of the response strategies is riddled with challenges that are threatening the sustainability matters. There is a need to design community-driven response mechanisms synergized with national and international climate adaptation initiatives to ensure sustainability of the strategies through guaranteed policy and resource support from the national government and non-governmental agencies.


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Ziti, Chenjerai, Lazarus Chapungu, and Godwell Nhamo. 2023. “Climate Change Response Strategies and Implications on Sustainable Development Goals in Mutirikwi River Sub-Catchment of Zimbabwe”. Journal of Environmental Geography 17 (1-4):1-14.
Author Biographies

Chenjerai Ziti, Great Zimbabwe University

Department of Physics, Geography and Environmental Science

Lazarus Chapungu, University of South Africa

Exxaro Chair in Climate and Sustainability Transitions

Godwell Nhamo, University of South Africa

Exxaro Chair in Climate and Sustainability Transitions


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