Adaptation and mitigation trade-offs or synergies

Processes and consequences for adaptation and mitigation

GHG concentrations and global climate change Climate change impacts, damages avoided and residual risk Development status

Illustrative examples organised according to the scale of action

Global / Policy

Awareness of limits to adaptation motivates negotiations on mitigation

CDM trades provide funds for adaptation through surcharge

Assessment of costs and benefits in A and M in setting targets for stabilisation

Allocation of MEA funds or Special Climate Change Fund

Regional I national strategic I sectoral planning

( \ Watershed planning e.g. hydroelectricity and land cover, affect GHG emissions

Fossil-fuel tax increase cost of adaptation through higher energy prices

{ ■ \ Testing project sensitivity to mitigation policy, social cost of carbon and climate impacts r \

National capacity (e.g., self-assessment) supports A and M in policy integration

Local I biophysical community and individual actions

Increased use of air-conditioning (homes, offices, transport) raises GHG emissions

Community carbon sequestration affects livelihoods

Corporate integrated assessment of exposure to mitigation policy and climate impacts f

Local planning authorities implement criteria related to both A and M in land use planning

Figure 18.2. Typology of inter-relationships between climate change adaptation and mitigation. MEA = Multilateral Environmental Agreements.

• strategic planning related to development pathways, for example scenario and visioning exercises with urban governments that include climate responses (mainstreaming responses in sectoral and regional planning);

• allocation of funding and setting the agenda for UNFCCC negotiations and funds (e.g., the Special Climate Change Fund);

• stabilisation targets that include limits to adaptation (e.g., tolerable windows);

• analysis of global costs and benefits of mitigation to inform targets for greenhouse-gas concentrations (see Section 18.4.2);

• large-scale mitigation (e.g., geo-engineering) with effects on impacts and adaptation.

Some actions result from the simultaneous consideration of adaptation and mitigation. These concerns may be raised within the same decision framework or sequential process but without explicitly considering their trade-offs or synergies (labelled adaptation and mitigation, AflM). Examples include:

• perception of impacts and the limits to adaptation (see Chapter 17) motivates action on mitigation, conversely the perception of limits to mitigation reinforces urgent action on adaptation;

watershed planning where water is allocated between hydroelectricity and consumption without explicitly addressing mitigation and adaptation;

cultural values that promote both adaptation and mitigation, such as sacred forests (e.g., Satoyama in Japan);

management of socio-ecological systems to promote resilience;

ecological impacts, with some human element, drive further releases of greenhouse gases, legal implications of liability for climate impacts motivates mitigation;

national capacity-building increases the ability to respond to both adaptation and mitigation (such as through the National Capacity-Building Self Assessment); insurance spreads risk and assists with adaptation, while managing insurance funds has implications for mitigation; trade liberalisation may have economic benefits (increasing adaptive capacity) but also increases emissions from transport;

monitoring systems and reporting requirements may cover indicators of both adaptation and mitigation; management of multilateral environmental agreements may benefit both adaptation and mitigation.

Table 18.1. Types of inter-relationships between climate change adaptation and mitigation.





Individual responses to climatic hazards that increase or decrease greenhouse-gas emissions

More efficient energy use and renewable sources that promote local development

Public-sector funding and budgetary processes that allocate funding to both A and M

Perception of impacts (and limits to A) motivates M; perception of limits to M motivates A

More efficient community use of water, land, forests

CDM projects on land use or energy use that support local economies and livelihoods

Strategic planning related to development pathways (scenarios) to mainstream climate responses

Watershed planning: allocation of water between hydroelectricity and consumption

Natural resources managed to sustain livelihoods

Urban planning, building design and recycling with benefits for both A and M

Allocation of funding and setting the agenda for UNFCCC negotiations and funds

Cultural values that promote both A and M, such as sacred forests (e.g., Satoyama in Japan)

Tourism use of energy and water, with outcomes for incomes and emissions

Health benefits of mitigation through reduced environmental stresses

Stabilisation targets that include limits to adaptation (e.g., tolerable windows)

Management of socio-ecological systems to promote resilience

Resources used in adaptation, such as large-scale infrastructure, increase emissions

Afforestation, leading to depleted water resources and other ecosystem effects, with consequences for livelihoods

Analysis of global costs and benefits of M to inform targets

Ecological impacts, with some human element, drive further releases of greenhouse gases

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