Living change: Adaptive housing responses to climate change in the town camps of Alice Springs

Horne, R, Martel, A, Arcari, P, Foster, D and McCormack, A 2013, Living change: Adaptive housing responses to climate change in the town camps of Alice Springs, National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility, Gold Coast, Australia


Document type: Commissioned Reports
Collection: Commissioned Reports

Title of report Living change: Adaptive housing responses to climate change in the town camps of Alice Springs
Author(s) Horne, R
Martel, A
Arcari, P
Foster, D
McCormack, A
Year of publication 2013
Publisher National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility
Place of publication Gold Coast, Australia
ISBN 9781925039573
Subjects Urban and Regional Planning not elsewhere classified
Abstract/Summary This project focussed upon adaptive housing responses to climate change in the town camps of Alice Springs. It particularly examined household practices of staying cool and keeping warm in the context of increasing extremes of temperatures and climate. The research found that town camp residents involved in the study deal with heat and cold in a diverse variety of ways, and we conclude from this that diversity is a sign of adaptive capacity. Town camp residents retain variants of previous practice and embrace new practice variants, which have emerged since the refurbishments and provision of new housing over the couple of years prior to the study. Moreover, town camp residents have a clear understanding and many experiences of dealing with extreme weather events, and are (at least) bilingual, bi-cultural, and have strong cultural identities in Indigenous practice while participating in 'mainstream' economic and social life in Alice Springs and throughout Australia. As such, the town campers are well placed to adapt to changing circumstances, including changing climate conditions. However, there exists a capacity imbalance arising from poverty and both chronic and periodic overcrowding, which remains an entrenched problem and cause of community stress, so adaptive practices need to be actively monitored and nurtured. The emerging tenancy management regime is partially supporting tenant initiated sustainable living practices and there is a need for further work in this regard, as indicated in the following recommendations emerging from this research.
Commissioning body National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility (NCCARF)
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