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Symposium 2011

Proposal - Managing Adaptation to Climate Change in the Developing World

The Challenge

In policy discussions of climate change, mitigation has been the main focus to date but adaptation to climate change is moving up the policy agenda. Simulation models suggest that the negative effects ...

In policy discussions of climate change, mitigation has been the main focus to date but adaptation to climate change is moving up the policy agenda. Simulation models suggest that the negative effects of climate change disproportionately fall on the developing world. Some argue that such effects have already started to become visible in the form of agricultural damage, displacement of people by floods, etc.

Solution 1: Put agriculture & food security at the top of development & national security priorities

The multiple challenges of food, energy, and water security, are connected in complex ways, and if not managed well have implications for national and regional security. This requires an integrated policy & management approach by creating a policy environment that implements a cross-sectoral approach to agriculture and food security. This ought to be in the form of a multidisciplinary model of the food system using more integrated approaches to food security in the context of climate change.

Solution 2: Recognize that one-size-fits all solutions cannot achieve food security

Our human and environmental diversity prohibits the commitment to one-size-fits all solutions. Solutions ought to be applied in a manner that is conducive to regional, local, and even site-specific conditions and needs. Overall management of agricultural knowledge, science and technology (AKST) ought to be re-directed to cater to site-specific needs in order to help the poorest farmers, especially women.

Solution 3: Develop specific policies and programs to assist the most vulnerable populations in times of crisis

Develop systems of food reserves targeted to vulnerable countries as a buffer against price volatility in times of crisis. Food price stabilization policy levers ought to be applied by national governments, acting collectively through international agencies, to stabilize global food prices to reduce hunger and starvation.

Solution 4: Intensify agricultural production while reducing green house gas emissions and other unsustainable practices

Promote farming systems that enable more productive and resilient livelihoods while simultaneously restoring agricultural landscapes. Provide access to land, water, finance, insurance, markets, and infrastructure to marginalized food producers, especially women.

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