Emerging case for immediate action

The impacts and vulnerabilities highlighted in the preceding parts of this report have given greater urgency to the need for concerted international action. Indeed, there has been an observable shift in policy perspectives onto the economic basis for accelerating mitigation responses. The Stern Review on the Economics of Climate Change in the UK (Stern, 2006), made a compelling statement that significant early action was vital in tackling climate change and the costs to the global economy would...

The role for public policy in adaptation

Given the combined public and private good nature of the benefits of adaptation in agriculture and related sectors, what is the role for public policy in tackling these climate change risks This chapter considers rationales for public intervention in adaptation. The public-private issue is important since it represents real trade-offs in policy. Governments in Europe, for example, continue to intervene in agricultural markets to reach public policy objectives of conservation, food security and...

Bibliography

McEvoy, R. Mechler, H. Neufeldt, A. Patt, P. Watkiss, A. Wreford, Z. Kundzewicz, C. Lavalle and C. Egenhofer, (2008), Adaptation to climate change why is it needed and how can it be implemented , CEPS Policy Brief, 161, www.ceps.eu. Abildtrup, J., E. Audsley, M. Fekete-Farkas, C. Giupponi, M. Gylling, P. Rosato and M. Rounsevell (2006), Socio-economic scenario development for the assessment of climate change impacts on agricultural land use a pairwise comparison...

Adaptation in agriculture observed

Not all adaptation actions require conscious knowledge of climate change risks (see Reilly and Schimmelpfenning, 2000). In the UK, Tompkins et al. (2005) have described over 340 adaptations to climate currently underway. Their inventory includes examples of adaptation to climate change in the public and private sectors, as well as community groups, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), other associations and networks (including, for example, trade associations) and individuals. In the United...

Policy instruments for adaptation

In agriculture, possible policy instruments may include price signals and market mechanisms insurance instruments microfinance and R& D incentives (Fankhauser et al., 2008). The insurance sector (risk sharing) is likely to play a key role in future adaptation decisions, whether through traditional indemnity-based insurance, or through other options that may be more suitable for climate-based insurance, such as index-based schemes, weather derivatives or catastrophe bonds. For more detail on...

The scope of adaptation

The chapters above have reviewed estimates of the major impacts of climate change on agriculture and related resources at the global scale. Faced with these threats and challenges, there are two major responses for policy intervention in agriculture. The first strategy is to reduce the rate and magnitude of climate change itself through reducing the human causes of climate change i.e. mitigation of greenhouse gases, which is discussed in detail in Chapter 5. The second (and complementary)...

Estimating the costs and benefits of adaptation

It is only recently that studies examining the cost of adaptation have begun to emerge. Some, such as a report on the costs of adaptation to the global economy by the UNFCCC (UNFCCC, 2007), produce large-scale global costs, based on the investment and financial flows required to address climate change. For all sectors studied (which include agriculture) the investment and financial flows required to adapt to projected climate changes could be more than USD 100 billion per year several decades...

Pastures and livestock production

It has been known since the third IPCC assessment (TAR) that the combination of increases in CO2 concentration, together with changes in rainfall and temperature were likely to have significant impacts on grasslands and rangelands, with production generally increasing in humid temperate grasslands, but decreasing in arid and semi-arid regions. Since the TAR research has found that plant community structure is altered by elevated CO2 and climate change (Easterling et al., 2007). This means there...