The Importance Of Climate Change Adaptation
Last month we wrote about the importance of shifting the agricultural paradigm in developing nations: that "green revolution " of the 1950's and 60's is history - count it gone with the Beats.
Green Revolution II - based on a strategy of resilience rather than growth - means a circumspect look at how to adapt to climate extremes and less focus on ways to increase yields. Why change the focus? Unlike during the post-WWII era, extreme weather and energy prices are becoming more deterministic factors in agriculture.
Climate adaptation will require a great many paradigm shifts beyond just agriculture just to hold the line on economic progress and public health. World Resources Institute is among the first to tackle this subject in an organized manner.
A new report entitled Weathering the Storm: Options for Framing Adaptation and Development, released today by the World Resources Institute, reviews ways that adapting to climate change intersects with economic development.
The report analyzes 135 projects, policies, and other initiatives from the developing world that may help communities and nations adjust to the changing climate. A companion database makes the case studies publicly available online. The release is timed as part of "Development and Climate Days" here during the annual U.N. climate negotiations.
Here's one case-study abstract from the 135 included:
6. LIVELIHOOD ADAPTATION TO CLIMATE VARIABILITY AND CHANGE IN DROUGHT-PRONE AREAS: DEVELOPING INSTITUTIONS AND OPTIONS, BANGLADESH (FAO AND THE ASIAN DISASTER PREPAREDNESS CENTRE (ADPC)):
The project, implemented under the Comprehensive Disaster Risk Management Programme and in close collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture Department of Agricultural Extension (DAE), specifically looks at: characterization of livelihood systems; profiling of vulnerable groups; assessment of past and current climate impacts; and understanding of local perceptions of climate impacts, local coping capacities, and existing adaptation strategies. It also is developing a good practice adaptation option menu, evaluating and field testing locally selected options, and introducing long-lead climate forecasting, capacity building and training of DAE extension staff and community representatives. The options in the menu include: (1) improving crop security through agronomical management; (2) improving irrigation efficiency; (3) rainwater harvesting; (4) crop diversification and intensification; (5) promotion of alternative entreprise; and (6) improving access to credit. The next step was working with farmers to test various options, followed by a sound economic and marketing analysis of the successfully tested options. Dissemination and extension strategies being considered include: demonstrations, orientation meetings, field days, farmer field schools, and community rallies.