The Environments of the Poor in Southeast Asia, East Asia and the Pacific

Publication | May 2014

This book introduces a spatial approach to poverty, and argues that a triple win-reducing poverty, protecting the environment, and responding to climate change-is possible.

The Southeast and East Asia regions have made major progress in reducing income poverty by bringing down the level of poverty incidence from 57% in 1990 to 16% in 2008 for the US$1.25 international poverty line and from 81% to 28% for the US$2 international poverty line, over the same period. However, living standards for many poor people remain a major challenge due to worsening environmental degradation and increasing vulnerability to climate change.

This book is first in a series of a three-volume publication on the environments of the poor, and contains selected papers on Southeast Asia, East Asia, and the Pacific from a conference organized in 2010 by ADB, in cooperation with various development partners and think tank institutes in Asia. The book introduces a spatial approach to poverty, and argues that a triple win—reducing poverty, protecting the environment, and responding to climate change—is possible.

It is published jointly jointly by ADB and the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies (ISEAS), with cofinancing from the ADB Institute.


  • Contents 
  • Preface 
  • List of Contributors 
  • Overview
    • A New Triple-Win Option for the Environment of the Poor
  • East Asia (People's Republic of China and Republic of Korea)
    • Poverty, Environment, and Climate Change in the Grasslands of the People's Republic of China
    • Climate Change, Food Security, and Poverty in the People's Republic of China
    • The Physical and Social Environment of the Chinese Urban Poor
    • Benefiting the Poor, the Environment, and the Private Sector with Small Enterprises and Green Jobs in the People's Republic of China
    • Environment, Economic Growth, and Poverty in the Republic of Korea
  • Pacific Islands
    • Climate Change Adaptation and Poverty Reduction in the Small Islands of the Pacific
    • The Role of Development Organizations in Pro-poor Adaptation to Global Warming in the Pacific Islands
  • Mainland Southeast Asia (Cambodia, Thailand, Viet Nam)
    • Poverty and the Environment in Rural Cambodia
    • Conservation Agriculture in Cambodia - A Triple-Win Option
    • Voices of the Poor on Climate Change in Thailand and Viet Nam
    • Poor Thai Farmers' Adaptation to Climate Change
  • Archipelagic Southeast Asia (Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines)
    • The Political Economy of Environmental Policy in Indonesia
    • Prospering in Environmental Degradation - An Illustration from an Upland Area, South Kalimantan, Indonesia
    • Making a Living in the Face of Environmental Change - A Case in an Indigenous Community in Sarawak, Malaysia
    • The Respnose of Rural Coastal Households to Typhoon Milenyo in the Philippines
    • Life Along Manila's Flooding Rivers
    • Quantifying the Health Risks from Pathogens in the Flood Water in Metro Manila
    • Slum Poverty in the Philippines - Can the Environment Agenda Drive Public Action?

Additional Details

  • Agriculture and natural resources
  • Climate change
  • Economics
  • Environment
  • Poverty
  • Cambodia
  • China, People's Republic of
  • Indonesia
  • Korea, Republic of
  • Malaysia
  • Philippines
  • Thailand
  • Viet Nam
  • 312
  • 6 x 9
  • BKK146450-3
  • 978-981-4517-99-7 (print)
  • 978-981-4519-00-7 (electronic)

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